SpeakinMotion has been created as a useful tool for clinicians working with persistent apraxia and chronic Broca’s aphasia. It is not a therapy approach per se, but brings the VAST program, that is entirely consistent with the underlying principles of other approaches, to apraxia treatment.
The work of Leora Cherney, Audrey Holland, and others in Script Training has been recognized as effective clinical intervention. Typically, scripts created by persons with aphasia are written and repeatedly practiced to facilitate automatization. Script training is an approach being used successfully across a variety of clinical settings.
VAST adheres to this same principle of instance theory of automatization in a unique way. The complete sequence of oral movements speaking a predetermined script is video recorded to be used as a visual example to be followed by a non-fluent speaker. The content of the script is created by the individual (and/or SLP) to meet their communicative needs.
The advantage of using recorded oral movements of a human as a visual example, as opposed to an avatar, is the preciseness of the labial and lingual positioning and movement that is necessary to facilitate continuous speech, particularly in apraxia. Additionally, there is increased opportunity to provide the appropriate phrasing and pausing pattern for individualized needs.
A distinctly unique advantage is the portability of downloading the scripts onto mobile devices (iPods, iPhones, and other mobile devices) such that they can be used in functional communication environments.
The VAST program has potential for use in a variety of motor speech and nonfluent aphasic presentations, and across a wide array of clinical settings. We believe that the the primary drawback has been the time and technical knowledge required to make this work effectively. SpeakinMotion has been created to solve that issue. The SpeakinMotion platform will allow clinicians (and individuals) to make use of existing video, create new video that is tailored to the individual needs of clients and to readily transport scripts onto their mobile devices.