A Survey of Screen-Based Device Use by Public School Speech-Language Pathologists



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Limited information is present in the literature concerning the use of technology by speech-language pathologists (SLPs) during direct intervention. The present study addresses that gap by exploring (a) the frequency with which SLPs utilize eight types of screen-based devices during direct intervention, (b) rationales for screen-based device use, and (c) relationships between clinical factors and screen-based device use. The sample consisted of 261 public school SLPs across 43 states providing direct intervention services to students diagnosed with a communication disorder enrolled in preschool (n = 129), elementary (n = 202), secondary (n = 129), and post-secondary settings (n = 21). A purposive sample of respondents completed an internet-based self-administered survey reporting the frequency with which desktop computers, laptops, tablets, e-readers, handheld devices, interactive whiteboards, document cameras, and television, DVR, or DVDs were used. Among the eight types of screen-based devices surveyed, statistical analyses suggest that a majority of SLPs use tablets at a significantly higher rate of use, followed by laptops and handheld devices. Furthermore, results varied significantly when differentiated by student age, type of communication disorder, type of service delivery model, and years of professional experience. Caseload size and funding source did not significantly impact screen-based device use. The current study provides a pivotal step in exploring why and how SLPs utilize technology in a therapeutic manner.



Screen-based devices, Speech-language pathologists