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Volume 17, Number 1 2015


Diversity in practice


s speech pathologists, we work in a large,

diverse, and dynamic field of practice.

We have the privilege of working with

clients and colleagues with different views and

experiences, cultural and linguistic backgrounds,

social and economic resources, and clinical

goals and needs. We are energised and inspired

by this diversity, but also challenged at times.

This issue of the

Journal of Clinical Practice in

Speech-Language Pathology

is aimed at sharing,

better understanding, embracing, and ultimately

celebrating this “Diversity in practice”.

We are fortunate as speech pathologists to be

able to draw upon a growing body of research

literature and a rich accumulation of practice-

wisdom to guide our clinical practice. Verdon

opens the issue with an insightful review identifying

six key principles of practice when working with

families from culturally and linguistically diverse

backgrounds. McLeod illustrates that where gaps

in our knowledge exist, speech pathologists are leading international multidisciplinary

teams to devise innovative solutions, such as through the develo

pment o

f the Intelligibility

in Context Scale. Yet there is clearly much more work to be done. Siyambalapitiya and

Davidson offer a timely review of the complexities speech pathologists face in managing

aphasia in bilingual and culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) individuals in an

Australian context. Pang, Mok, and Rose suggest that common barriers to providing

aphasia assessment and intervention to CALD populations appear to have changed little

over the past decade, and argue for urgent action to address the barriers.

Byrne in her article, and Williams in the “What’s the evidence” column, remind us that it

is not just diversity among our clients that shapes our work, but also diversity in our ranks.

Byrne draws on the findings of the recent Health Workforce Australia report examining the

speech pathology profession in noting that despite some progress in the past 15 years,

speech pathologists are still far from being representative of the Australian population with

respect to gender ratio, participation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, or

cultural and linguistic diversity. Williams reviews the evidence for diversity in both clients

and clinicians, and reminds us that diversification in the practice of speech pathology is an

international phenomenon that presents both challenges and opportunities.

Sokkar and McAllister turn our attention to the preparation of our next generation of

speech pathologists to work effectively in diverse practice settings. They highlight the

fact that although the private practice sector plays a critical role in meeting the needs

of Australians with communication and swallowing problems, few Australian university

programs offer clinical placements in private practice settings. Sokkar and McAllister’s

qualitative study sheds light on benefits and barriers associated with supervising students

in private practice. Golding and Leitão reflect on the ethical decision-making in supervising

students working with CALD clients. McKinley and colleagues present an example of an

innovative approach to service delivery for adults with acquired communication disorders

resulting from stroke that typifies the creative and diverse clinical approaches to practice

that both current and future speech pathologists will likely embrace.

This is my first issue as editor of


, and I look forward to working together with

contributors and the Editorial Committee to sharing timely, innovative, rigorous, and at all

times clinically relevant, findings and practices from all areas of our diverse profession. I

warmly thank Jane McCormack and Anna Copley for their excellent stewardship of the

journal and ongoing and important contribution to the profession.

From the editor

David Trembath


From the editor

2 Enhancing practice with culturally and linguistically diverse families: 6 key principles from the field – Sarah Verdon 7 Intelligibility in Context Scale: A parent-report screening tool translated into 60 languages Sharynne McLeod 13 Managing aphasia in bilingual and culturally and linguistically diverse individuals in an Australian context: Challenges and future directions Samantha Siyambalapitiya and Bronwyn Davidson 20 Time for change: Results of a national survey of SLP practice in CALD aphasia rehabilitation Sonia Pang, Zaneta Mok and Miranda Rose 27 Social conversations for hospital patients with acquired communication disabilities Kathryn McKinley, Renee Heard, Sally Brinkmann, Julia Shulsinger, and Robyn O’Halloran 32 Diversity in speech pathology: Endangered or extinct? – Nicole Byrne 37 Diversifying student placements: Understanding barriers to and benefits of placements in speech pathology private practice – Carl Sokkar and Lindy McAllister 45 Living out diversity in practice: A clinical educator’s reflections on ethical decision-making in a university clinical setting for culturally and linguistically diverse children Shannon Golding and Suze Leitão 48 What’s the evidence: Diversity in practice – Cori Williams 51 Webwords 51: Taking Twitter for a twirl in the diverse world of rotational curation – Caroline Bowen 54 Top ten resources for clinicians on the move or in resource-poor settings Lydelle Joseph 56 Resource review