Tell me your story: Analysis of script topics selected by persons with aphasia

Audrey L. Holland, Anita S Halper, Leora R Cherney

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


Purpose: This study examined the content of 100 short scripts, co-constructed by persons with aphasia (PWA) and a clinician. The PWA subsequently learned the scripts by interacting with a computerized virtual therapist. The goal was to provide clinicians with ideas regarding content for treatment that is meaningful to PWAs. Method: Thirty-three PWAs generated the scripts, typically including 1 monologue and 2 dialogues in which the PWA was either the initiator or the responder. Scripts were analyzed for common topics and themes. Results: Thirty topics were identified and categorized into 10 themes. For the monologues, the largest category was personal stories (68%), with 12 of the 19 addressing their stroke and aphasia. For the dialogues, conversations with family were dominant (21%), followed by seeking or providing information (18%), and discussion of outside interests (14%). Conclusion: PWAs choose to speak about their life experiences, choose to reconnect with their families, and tend to focus on communication that can help them to negotiate mundane normal life. Independent of how this content is used in treatment, materials should emphasize matters of high personal relevance to those treated.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)198-203
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican journal of speech-language pathology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jan 1 2010


  • Aphasia
  • Computer treatment
  • Rehabilitation
  • Script topics
  • Script training

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Linguistics and Language
  • Speech and Hearing

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