chapter  9
15 Pages

The assessment of cluttering: rationale, tasks, and interpretation: Yvonne van Zaalen, Frank Wijnen, and Philipe Dejonckere


As Ward (2006) has stated, no one speaks 100 percent fluently. Even the most eloquent speakers have occasional speech failures. In all likelihood, Ward continues, most of us make these mistakes more often than we actually want to. Ward notes that different kinds of speech failures exist. For instance, we can add words or sounds to gain time, such as ‘uh’, or ‘well’. It is also possible to reconstruct a sentence during speech when we notice that the formulated sentence does not have the effect we wanted. Word repetitions or stumbling over one’s words are common speech failures. In response to failures like this, the layperson may say, ‘Oh, I am stuttering again.’ Such fluency failures, Ward contends, are not typically characteristic of stuttering but are common in another fluency disorder known as cluttering. When a person produces a high frequency of these slips of the tongue, that happen in different speech situations and often (Ward, 2006), and they are produced in conjunction with irregularities of speech rate, prosody, and/or intelligibility, it may be called cluttering (Ward, 2006).