E-books for toddlers and preschoolers with communication disorders: attitude, belief, and practice of speech-language pathologists in India
Keywords:E-books, Shared reading, Emergent literacy skills, language development, Speech-Language Pathologist
Electronic books are a part of the ever-expanding culture and assist children to become a member of a highly digitalized society. While e-books are similar to printed books, they have interactive elements, noises, and other engaging features. E-books are an effective means to engage and entertain young kids and foster the development of language and emergent literacy. Improving the shared reading experience using e-books requires deep comprehension and acceptance of e-books. Nevertheless, there needs to be more research available on shared reading using e-books among toddlers and preschoolers. The present study aimed to assess and analyze the attitude, belief, and practice of Speech-Language Pathologists toward e-books among toddlers and preschoolers with communication disorders. A self-administered online questionnaire with 20 questions was developed and sent to 118 practicing SLPs in India through e-mail and WhatsApp. The attitude and belief scores of most SLPs in the study population regarding e-books were positive, indicating their knowledge about using e-books to support language and literacy skills. However, no association was found between attitude and belief and the working experience or educational qualification of SLPs or their age range of caseload. Only a few SLPs (42.7%) reported using e-books in their intervention sessions. The limited usage of e-books by SLPs during the intervention may be attributed to two factors: firstly, their insufficient knowledge of e-books in general, and secondly, their lack of understanding of the advantages of integrating e-books with language scaffolding. Encouraging SLPs to select the appropriate ones and implementing shared reading would pave the way for many opportunities for an effective, shared reading experience.
Keywords: E-books, Shared reading, Emergent literacy skills, Language development, Speech-Language Pathologist.
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