A structured approach to train text messaging in an individual with aphasia

Mira Fein, Chelsea Bayley, Kindle Rising, Pélagie M. Beeson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Background: Text messaging is an increasingly common communication modality that can present considerable challenges to individuals with aphasia. Not only does “texting” rely on central (linguistic) and peripheral (sensorimotor) abilities but also it requires unique procedural and pragmatic skills. Aim: The purpose of this study was to develop and evaluate a structured treatment protocol to promote mastery of communication via text messaging in an individual with aphasia. Methods & Procedures: This treatment is studied with a 73-year-old woman with anomic aphasia and mild limb apraxia targeted procedural and pragmatic skills for mobile phone use. Beginning 3 years post-stroke, she received a three-phase training sequence that first addressed single-word typing on her mobile phone, followed by script training for text messages, and finally conversational skills for initiating and responding to text messages. Outcomes & Results: Despite some residual language and visual processing impairments, the participant developed functional text messaging abilities at the word, script, and conversational levels. She demonstrated generalization of skills to novel content and situations, and maintained her text-messaging abilities 1 year post-treatment. Conclusions: The treatment protocol to retrain text messaging skills in an individual with aphasia yielded strong positive outcomes, warranting further examination in other suitable individuals.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)102-118
Number of pages17
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2 2020


  • Aphasia
  • aphasia treatment
  • functional communication
  • phonological agraphia
  • text messaging
  • texting

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology
  • Language and Linguistics
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Linguistics and Language
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • LPN and LVN


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