Equipment provided by the trust is continuing to reap benefits across Suffolk according to Peta Cook and Paula Hughes, Professional Managers, Paediatric Speech & Language Therapy, Suffolk PCT. All clinics now have laptops and video recorders, on loan since 2008 and unavailable through the NHS, which means that as soon as the SLT sees a child for assessment/ therapy, they can start parent child interaction straightaway. For parents, it helps themto understand the complexity of their childʼs stammer and find ways of interacting with the child in order to facilitate fluency.
Louise Helliker has been using a system called Semantria, which performs sentiment analysis of samples of speech transcriptions collected during the Longitudinal study. Sentiment analysis aims to determine the attitude of a speaker or writer – such as his or her judgement or evaluation, emotional state, or the emotional effect the author/speaker wishes to have on the reader/listener. The results are being incorporated into a report for Sarah Costelloe. It is hoped that this type of analysis will reveal factors about the linguistic development of children who stammer, which may be different from other children of the same age. For example, they might have smaller or larger vocabularies, express their emotions less or more, use a wider or narrower range of bi-grams (word pairs) or have different levels of self-awareness – all information which may be useful for teachers or therapists. This work has been made possible thanks to British Telecom’s (BT’s) volunteering programme which actively supports employees’ efforts to get involved in their local communities.