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Therapy for Articulation Errors

The Motor/Phonetic (Traditional) Approach

Background Information:
-early clinicians in our field (early 1900s) developed this approach
-Van Riper (1939) was one of most well-known developers/proponents of this approach

What is the focus of this approach?

When is it appropriate to use this approach?

Therapy involves three stages:

Establishment, Generalization, Maintenance
-each stage involves a series of short-term objectives, that are developed to
meet a clients individual needs
Objective: to elicit the correct production of error sounds/phonological contrasts
and achieve consistent spontaneous production
You begin therapy at the establishment stage if the client has difficulty with the
production of a sound.
Two techniques for establishing sound production:
1. Perceptual/Speech Discrimination Training (Van Riper - "Ear Training")

In some cases discrimination training is good

2. Production Training - establish sound in isolation or nonsense syllables

Techniques for establishing production include:
Imitation-immediate model
Use of phonetic placement cues (modalities: auditory/verbal, visual,
tactile/proprioceptive kinetic, taste)
Use of facilitative contexts (sounds around the phoneme)-ex child cnt produce phoneme
alone, give a word that helps them produce that sound which is close to the placement
for the phonemeexample /s//see/, /stu/
Successive approximation/shaping-start with something the child can produce
Childs goal: /s/
Child is able to produce /t/-----trying to use /t/ to produce /s/
---trying to prolong, aspirate, while producing ttss
Another example--- /l/ /r/ evoke, to help bunch up tongue to shape /r/
Do not leave this stage until child produces the sound, voluntarily on their own.

Generalization (Transfer)
Objective: To facilitate/encourage carryover/transfer of the therapy target to a variety of
-if the client is able to produce the target at the beginning of the therapy process,
therapy may begin with this stage, rather than the Establishment Stage
-clients differ in their ability to generalize/transfer behavior, so the clinician structures
therapy to meet each clients needs
-amount of training needed for generalization to occur depends on the client
Types of Generalization: 2 aspects

1. Contextual Generalization
Transfer cross positions in word- facilitate transfer to all positions of the word,
transfer across all word positions
Transfer across phonetic contexts

2. Sound and Feature Generalization

by working on one sound, it encourages production of another sound (more
working on feature of voicing, voicing contrasts can carry over to other
phonemes to other phonemesfeature is generalizing

3. Linguistic Unit Generalization-increasing complexity of a target..ex on blackboard

3. Situational Generalization-everyday life

-homework, should be what child is good at in therapy, should not be time
consuming, and go over it when child comes back

Additional concepts:


Maintenance (Retention)
Objective: Consistent and spontaneous use of therapy targets in conversational speech