Volume 15, Issue 3 (Autumn 2013)                   Advances in Cognitive Sciences 2013, 15(3): 12-23 | Back to browse issues page

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Ferdosi N, Ashayeri H, Modarresi Y, Rovshan B. The Effects of Melodic Intonation Therapy on 7-10- year, Persian, Autistic, Male Children’s Speech. Advances in Cognitive Sciences. 2013; 15 (3) :12-23
URL: http://icssjournal.ir/article-1-149-en.html
1- PhD student of Linguistics, Center for Post-Graduate Studies. Payame Noor University, Tehran, Iran.
2- Full Professor .Dr, MD, of Neuro-Psychiatry, Faculty of Rehabilitation Sciences, Iran University of Medical Sciences,Tehran, Iran
3- Full Professor of Linguistics, Department of Linguistics, Institute for Humanities & Cultural Studies, Tehran, Iran
4- Assistant Professor of Linguistics, Department of Linguistics & Foreign Languages, Payame Noor University, Tehran, Iran.
Abstract:   (2295 Views)
Introduction: Autism as a developmental disorder of the brain is characterized by difficulties in social interaction, verbal and nonverbal communication and stereotyped or repetitive behaviors and in some cases, cognitive delays. Despite prevalent speech problems in almost one fourth of autistic children, there are few reliable interventions to improve their speech output. This study investigated the effects of the Melodic Intonation Therapy (MIT) (Albert et al.’s model, 1973) on speech output in Persian-speaking autistic children. Although the positive effects of MIT on autistic children’s speech are vastly reported in other languages, no report on its effects based on the characteristics of Persian language has ever been published.
Method: An easy version of MIT, adapted for Persian language was designed by researchers. Then, after a successful pilot study on a 10 year-old boy for one month, 13 subjects were selected for the main study. The subjects were all autistic, male, right-handed 7-10- year old Persian children who underwent MIT for 48 sessions each 20-30 minute during 16 weeks. Background information was gathered from their parents using related questionnaire.
Children’s speech sounds were recorded in a natural linguistic context. As pretest and post-test, some assessments were accomplished, such as NEWSHA; the Persian developmental scale which was used to assessing the speech and expressive language skills. Similarly, to investigate the quality of speech, MLU (Mean Length of Utterance), speech rate, number of verbs and echolalia were assessed after phonetic transcription. Finally, data analysis was done using the SPSS software.
Results: Our findings indicated a significant increase in MLU, speech rate, number of verbs in sentence (P=0.001) as well as a significant decrease in the percentage of echolalia (P=0.007) following MIT. Furthermore, in NEWSHA; Persian developmental scale,there was an apparent post-MIT improvement in speech and expressive language skills in our subjects.
Conclusion: There seem to be convincing evidence for the positive effects of melodic intonation therapy on the Persian autistic children’s linguistic features. It is therefore recommended as a supplementary method in speech rehabilitation of the autistic children.
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Type of Study: Research | Subject: Special
Received: 2013/06/9 | Accepted: 2013/08/23 | Published: 2013/09/23

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