Participate

Would you like to know more about your child’s speech or language abilities?

  • We are in search of children ages 3 years 0 months to 5 years 11 months and their parent(s) to participate in a study about developmental stuttering.  We need children both with and without known or suspected stuttering problems.
  • For your help we will provide, at no cost to you, in-depth assessments of your child’s fluency, pronunciation, vocabulary, and grammar and provide you with that information in a summary sheet you can take home.  We will also pay you for your time and energy!  And, if your child does need further attention, we will work with you to develop a plan of action and provide options for community resources.

Visit Procedures:

  • Our testing is thorough and takes place during two visits (about 2 hours each).  These sessions are designed to be informative for you as well as fun for your child.
  • During the first visit to our Vanderbilt Bill Wilkerson Center location your child will receive a complete speech-language assessment, a hearing test, and participate in play-based conversations.  Parents will fill out some questionnaires and meet with a certified Speech-Language Pathologist to talk about your child's speech and language development.  
  • During the second visit to our Jesup Hall location on Vanderbilt's Peabody campus, children will participate in play-based conversations, watch clips from a movie, do some storytelling, and "drive" our kid-sized Jeep.  
  • If you have any questions about the study, see our Frequently Asked Questions below, watch our video about a visit, or please contact us.

F.A.Q.’s About Participating

How often would I have to visit Vanderbilt?

  • This longitudinal study requires a set of two visits every 8 months (4 sets of visits over 2 years).  Tracking your child’s speech-language progress over time will allow us to learn more about how speech-language changes over time and why some children are able to stop stuttering while others persist.

How long will each visit take?

  • Each visit takes approximately 2 to 2½ hours. 

What can I expect at the visits?

  • The first visit of each set is a diagnostic visit and your child will receive a complete speech-language assessment, a hearing screening, and participate in play-based conversations.  Parents will fill out some questionnaires and meet with a certified Speech-Language Pathologist who will ask and answers questions.  The second visit of each set is to test your child’s emotional reactions to different situations.  He/She will participate in play-based conversations, watch clips from a movie, do some storytelling, and "drive" our kid-sized Jeep.

Is treatment or therapy part of participating?

  • The lab does not provide direct treatment or therapy.  We do provide parents with standardized test scores related to their child’s speech-language abilities.  We also provide a consultation from a certified speech-language pathologist who can assist you in finding the appropriate services for your child should he/she need them.  During the consultation, the speech-language pathologist will also give recommendations of things to work on at home for kids who stutter. 

I’m concerned my child may not want to do the testing or won’t last through a 2½ hour long session.  

  • We modify each visit to fit the child’s needs and, when possible, intersperse more interesting activities among the more challenging ones.  Our research team members help children to warm up to and feel comfortable in the testing environment.  Additionally, during both visits you will have the opportunity to watch your child as they go through the visit procedures and you may stop the procedure at any time if you feel it is necessary.

How do I know whether my child qualifies for the study?

  • We are enrolling children between 3 and 5 years old.  We need both children who do and do not stutter.  Children with certain speech-language disorders or delays may not be eligible to participate.  If you have concerns that your family may not qualify for participation, please contact the lab by phone or submit your information and we will contact you.

What is the compensation?

  • In addition to the free speech-language consultation, participants receive $20 for the first visit and $30 for each additional visit every 8 months.

When does participation take place (e.g., regular business hours)?

  • Most appointments are scheduled to start at 9:30am Monday through Friday, but start times can be adjusted as needed during normal business hours and some weekend appointments are available.

I have another child. Can I bring him/her to the visits or do I have to arrange child care?

  • You can feel free to bring other children to the visits.  You will be able to stay with them the whole time.

What's the parking situation like?

  • Parking is readily available and free at both lab locations.

Is there any form of transportation available to/from your facilities?

  • There are a number of bus routes that service the areas near our labs and other forms of transportation may be arranged with our scheduling coordinator as needed.

Get Started:

We would like to chat with you about scheduling your child for this research project. If you are interested in participating in our research, please fill out the form at the link below to let us know a little bit about you.

Complete an Information Submission Form

If you have any additional questions, or would like more information, please contact us.

Contact the Developmental Stuttering Project: email: stuttering@vanderbilt.edu | phone: 615-936-5126