A communication partner training program: Assessing conversational behaviors and attitudes towards communication in Persons with Aphasia and their Communication Partners

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This study examined the conversational behaviors of eleven dyads consisting of a person with aphasia (PWA) and their familiar communication partner (CP), and investigated changes in behaviors as a result of attending a communication partner-training program CPT). Attitudes about communication were examined and related to conversational behaviors observed pre- and post- training. Results indicated that CPs and PWA used significantly more facilitating behaviors than barrier behaviors, although most dyads experienced some barriers. A comparison of pre-and post-CPT conversations revealed a significant interaction between time and type of behavior, with the increase in the number of facilitators approaching significance. Overall, persons with aphasia and their conversational partners expressed positive attitudes about communication. There were no significant correlations between scores on attitude surveys and behaviors pre or post-training. This study demonstrated that these dyads employed facilitative conversational behaviors even before CPT, and that facilitative behaviors can increase after a one-day training workshop.