Law, J., Dornstauder, M., Charlton, J., & Gréaux, M. (2021). Tele-practice for children and young people with communication disabilities: Employing the COM-B model to review the intervention literature and inform guidance for practitioners. International journal of language & communication disorders
Aim of the paper:
This study looks at how speech and language therapy for children/young people can be done at a distance using video and telephone methods. These are referred to as tele-practice interventions. This paper focuses on tele-practice interventions due to its increased use as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
This study looks at how previous research can explain the different factors impacting the quality of tele-practice interventions. These factors include the child characteristics (e.g., child’s attention, communication disorders), parent/carer and practitioner characteristics, as well as environment and motivation.
What they found:
Overall, there is not enough consideration of how the characteristics of children, practitioners and parents affect the quality of tele-practice interventions. The paper points out that previous research has assumed these factors are important, but that there was no real discussion surrounding these factors.
Motivation, through measures such as attendance rates, along with the physical environment (e.g., technological equipment used), are highlighted as directly impacting the effectiveness of TPI.
The research has consistently not looked at how the above factors affect practitioners and parents, with a heavy focus on the child/young person instead.
What does this mean?
This paper suggests a lack of focus on children’s, parents’ and practitioners’ experiences using tele-practice interventions in previous research. Moreover, this study highlights the need to consider unequal accessibility to resources, which is something that stops effective tele-practice interventions. These resources include technological equipment, the ability to communicate through these devices, quiet spaces, and support. This review emphasises on the importance of knowing about these problems in clinical practice and working towards reducing their impact on the quality of tele-practice interventions.
Where can I read this paper?
This paper is open access, which means everyone can read it.
Please click here to find the full paper.