Speech language pathologists' perceptions of services to children from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.
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Chiuri, Grace M.
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The purpose of the current study was to examine SLPs' perceptions of services to children with SLD from CLD backgrounds focusing on: (a) SLPs' perceived competence in providing services to children with SLD from CLD backgrounds (b); SLPs' perceptions on the effect of speech and language intervention on the academic, social, and behavioral performance of children with SLD from CLD backgrounds (c); how SLPs view the children from CLD backgrounds in their caseloads, their culture, beliefs, and languages; and (d) the challenges the SLPs encounter in providing services to children with SLD from CLD backgrounds. A descriptive research process was employed in order to explain the perspectives of the SLPs about the above mentioned issues. The participants in the present study were SLPs practicing in the southwestern area. A survey questionnaire was used to collect data for the present study. Some items in the survey questionnaire were adapted and modified from a survey used by Sanger, Moore-Brown, Montgomery and Hellerich (2004). It also included some items obtained from a document entitled "Cultural competence checklist: Service delivery" developed by ASHA (ASHA, 2010). The current study found that SLPs perceive speech and language therapy to have an effect on the academic, social interaction and peer adjustment, and behavioral performance of the children with SLD from CLD backgrounds. Also, some SLPs reported to not have received multicultural multilingual instruction during their academic or clinical training, and therefore, lack of multicultural and multilingual awareness for the SLPs is still a challenge in assessment and treatment of CLD children. However, SLPs seemed to have the initiative to learn the culture of the children from CLD backgrounds, and they also considered the children’s culture, beliefs, and languages in providing services to children from CLD backgrounds. A discussion of the findings, significance of the study, and suggestions for future research are included.