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In the past decade, there has been growing recognition of the need to involve clients in decisions about the healthcare they receive and in the evaluation of services offered. In health services research, survey and scaling methods have become important tools for research into 'consumer views' and the perspectives of people receiving healthcare. In spite of the increase in recent years in the participation of parents in their children's Speech and Language Therapy (SLT), there has been little attempt to investigate parents' perceptions and opinions of the services they receive. Moreover, there has been no previous attempt to derive a scale to measure these attitudes. The paper reports a study that explored the attitudes to therapy of 81 parents whose preschool children were receiving SLT intervention. Factor analysis of 12 items on a questionnaire revealed three issues salient in parental attitudes to therapy: practical help, emotional support and the perceived effectiveness of the service. The validity of these factors was supported by other findings from the questionnaire. The properties of the resulting scales are discussed and the ways in which they might be further refined and developed for use in SLT are suggested.

Original publication




Journal article


International journal of language & communication disorders

Publication Date





503 - 513


Speech and Language Therapy Research Unit, Frenchay Hospital, Bristol BS16 1LE, UK.


Humans, Treatment Outcome, Language Therapy, Speech Therapy, Factor Analysis, Statistical, Statistics, Nonparametric, Reproducibility of Results, Attitude to Health, Parents, Child, Preschool, Child Health Services, Patient Satisfaction, Female, Male