Summary of the Systematic Review

Article Citation

Auditory Processing Disorder and Auditory/Language Interventions: An Evidence-Based Systematic Review

Fey, M. E., Richard, G. J., et al. (2011).
Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools, 42(3), 246-264.
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Sponsoring Body

American Speech-Language-Hearing Association

Article Quality Ratings

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Indicators of Review Quality

  • Yes The review states a clearly focused question/aim.
  • Yes Criteria for inclusion of studies are provided.
  • Yes Search strategy described in sufficient detail for replication.
  • Yes Included studies are assessed for study quality.
  • Yes Quality assessments are reproducible.
  • Yes Characteristics of the included studies are provided.

Article Details

Description

This is a systematic review of peer-reviewed, exploratory and efficacy studies investigating auditory and language interventions for school-aged children with auditory processing disorder or spoken language disorder.

Questions/Aims Addressed

  1. "What are the effects of auditory interventions for children with a diagnosis of APD [auditory processing disorder]?
  2. What are the effects of auditory interventions for children with diagnoses of both APD and spoken language disorder?
  3. What are the effects of language interventions for children with a diagnosis of APD?
  4. What are the effects of language interventions for children with diagnoses of both APD and spoken language disorder?
  5. What are the effects of auditory interventions on children with a diagnosis of spoken language disorder?" (p. 247).

Population

School-aged children, 6 to 12 years old, with an auditory processing disorder and/or spoken language disorder

Intervention/Assessment

Active, direct treatment approaches designed to influence children's ability to process speech and language treatment (e.g., speech-in-noise treatment, auditory recognition/discrimination, auditory system stimulation, or modification of acoustic stimuli)

Number of Studies Included

25

Years Included

1978-2008


Conclusions from This Systematic Review

What are Conclusions?

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Treatment

"AIT [Auditory Integration Training] is not efficacious for school-age children with APD [auditory processing disorder]" (p. 252).

Keywords: Auditory Treatments (i.e. Manipulation of the Acoustic Signal)

Weak evidence suggests that intensive, short-term interventions "may be associated with improved auditory functioning among school-age children who meet broad criteria for APD [auditory processing disorder], with or without accompanying spoken language disorder. There is less evidence that these same interventions affect the spoken and written language performance of children with APD" (p. 252). These intensive, short-term interventions include:

  • traditional auditory intervention (e.g., speech-in-noise training, auditory recognition, and auditory discrimination),
  • Fast ForWord (e.g., computer program that modifies acoustic stimuli to improve the processing of spoken language), and
  • Earobics (e.g., computer program of activities that target listening, memory, and phonological skills in children).

Keywords: Auditory Treatments (i.e. Manipulation of the Acoustic Signal), Language Treatments (i.e. Manipulation of Language Form/Content/Use)

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Treatment

"The evidence suggests that the acoustic modifications found in Fast ForWord and similar speech modification interventions generally are not responsible for improved spoken language performance for children with language disorders" (p. 253).

Keywords: Auditory Processing Disorders, Fast ForWord

With regard to auditory interventions for school-age children with spoken language disorders, though positive auditory outcomes and limited language outcomes were reported, "no firm conclusions can be made concerning the listening/auditory discrimination program" (p. 253).

Keywords: Auditory Processing Disorders, Fast ForWord

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