Treatment of Discourse Deficits Following TBI Discourse may be thought of as “continuous stretches of language or a series of connected sentences or related linguistic units that convey a message” (Cherney, 1998, p. 2). The impetus for studying the discourse of individuals with traumatic brain injuries (TBI) emanates from a variety of factors. First, in most ... Article
Article  |   October 01, 2002
Treatment of Discourse Deficits Following TBI
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Michael S. Cannizzaro
    Department of Communication Sciences, University of Connecticut, Storrs
  • Carl A. Coelho
    Department of Communication Sciences, University of Connecticut, Storrs
  • Kathleen Youse
    Department of Communication Sciences, University of Connecticut, Storrs
Article Information
Attention, Memory & Executive Functions / Traumatic Brain Injury / Articles
Article   |   October 01, 2002
Treatment of Discourse Deficits Following TBI
SIG 2 Perspectives on Neurophysiology and Neurogenic Speech and Language Disorders, October 2002, Vol. 12, 14-19. doi:10.1044/nnsld12.3.14
SIG 2 Perspectives on Neurophysiology and Neurogenic Speech and Language Disorders, October 2002, Vol. 12, 14-19. doi:10.1044/nnsld12.3.14
Discourse may be thought of as “continuous stretches of language or a series of connected sentences or related linguistic units that convey a message” (Cherney, 1998, p. 2). The impetus for studying the discourse of individuals with traumatic brain injuries (TBI) emanates from a variety of factors. First, in most instances TBI does not result in a primarily linguistic disorder, such as aphasia. Therefore, the assessment of language at the single word or sentence level does not delineate the nature of the communicative impairment seen in individuals with TBI. Rather, breakdowns in communication of persons with TBI appear pragmatic in nature, that is, related to the social appropriateness of their language or use of language in context. Second, there is consensus that the difficulties these individuals display are the result of general cognitive dysfunction in such areas as attention, memory, organization, and executive functions and that discourse is an important intersection between language and cognition (Ylvisaker, Szekeres, & Feeney, 2001). Finally, changes in the health care environment have prompted an emphasis on functional communicative outcomes, that is, the purposeful use of language in specific environments (Cherney, 1998; Hartley, 1995).
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