The interactions of young children and their speech-language pathologist during out-of-class and in-class language intervention were compared for 15 children with disabilities attending a mainstreamed childcare center. Children were pair matched and randomly assigned to either in-class or out-of-class special services. After 3 months, treatment sessions were videotaped. The results indicated that some, but not all, aspects of both speech-language pathologists' and children's interactions differed during in-class versus out-of-class treatment sessions. During out-of-class sessions, speech-language pathologists took more turns than during in-class sessions. Children complied more with requests during out-of-class sessions and responded less to requests during in-class sessions. The results suggest that because in-class and out-of-class models have differential effects only on some aspects of clinician and child behavior, selection of service delivery models must be determined by a myriad of factors. Furthermore, these findings suggest that, in the absence of more conclusive data, it is premature to equate a particular mode of service delivery with a higher degree of treatment efficacy.
Key Words: service delivery, language intervention, clinician-child interactions
Submitted on August 2, 1993
Accepted on October 25, 1994
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