The evaluation of an app-based therapy program for auditory processing disorder: a pilot study
Links to Fileshttp://library.towson.edu/cdm/ref/collection/etd/id/50900
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Type of Workapplication/pdf
xi, 122 pages
DepartmentTowson University. Department of Audiology, Speech-Language Pathology and Deaf Studies
Individuals with auditory processing disorder (APD) have listening difficulties despite normal hearing thresholds (Chermak, 2002; Moore, 2006). This population presents heterogeneously. They can have deficits in one or more different areas of auditory processing, and commonly have co-occurring disorders (AAA, 2010; Chermak, 2002; Witton, 2010). This variability in presentation and symptoms can make it challenging to develop intervention strategies to treat this population. Throughout the years there have been computer-based programs that claim to treat APD (e.g., Earobics, and Fast ForWord), and more recently, an application (app)-based therapy has been developed. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the potential benefit of a new app-based therapy for children with APD . Five children, aged 7 to 11 years with confirmed or suspected APD were recruited for this study. Prior to starting therapy, their language, nonverbal intelligence, and hearing levels were screened. They were also administered two clinically used tests of auditory processing (the Frequency Pattern Test and the Dichotic Double Digits Test) and an app based diagnostic evaluation . Each participant was seen twice a week for 6 weeks of therapy. All participants engaged in the two app therapies regardless of their auditory weakness (temporal and/or dichotic listening deficits). Each therapy session lasted approximately 30-45 minutes in duration. After completion of the 6 week therapy, each participant was re administered the same tests of auditory processing and the app-based diagnostic evaluation again. Statistical analyses revealed there were no significant differences in test scores pre vs. post-therapy for either the tests of auditory processing or the app-based diagnostic evaluation for all participants. Improvements in test scores and therapy progress were variable among participants. The results from the pilot data indicated the benefit of the app was difficult to predict and results were conflicting at times (e.g., the app indicated a need for therapy, yet the participant completed therapy in one week). The findings from this study indicate the need for a larger scale study to more accurately determine the efficacy of this app-based therapy for the treatment of APD.