The following article is reprinted from Speaking Out, Vol. 15, No. 5, May 1998, the newsletter from Speak Easy of Canada. Speak Easy's editorial policy is that reproduction of original material in their newsletter is encouraged, but it is requested that quotations be made plainly in connection with the context. It is not copyrighted.
Electronic Fluency Aids
Electronic fluency aids may be suitable for some people who stutter. They may come with a "trial period" and a money-back arrangement. Those interested should carefully investigate the terms of sale. Purchasing via a credit card may protect your investment. For some, these devices may be a solution. The following information does not signify Speak Easy's official endorsement of any device:
Pacemaster (electronic metronome) - resembles a behind-the-ear hearing aid. The pacing and rhythmic effect of the metronome slows the client's speech, allows him to speak to the rhythmic beat, and leads to increased fluency. ($550 USD) Contact:
Associated Hearing Instruments Inc.
6796 Market Street
Upper Darby, PA
Fluency Master - provides aural enhancement of the vocal tone. A miniature microphone amplifies the "buss" of phonation and returns it to an earpiece that resembles a behind-the-ear hearing aid. ($1500 USD) Contact:
Beaumont Stuttering Center
3601 West Thirteen Mile Road
Royal Oak, MI
Delayed Auditory Feedback (DAF) - devices delay the user's voice to his headphones, shifts the pitch of the voice, masks the sound of the voice, etc. depending on the options selected. Catalogue available. ($350+ USD) Contact:
Casa Futura Technologies
PO Box 7551
Edinburgh Masker - provides a low buzzing to both ears that prevents the wearer from hearing his own voice when speaking, thus promoting fluency. Now being produced by a new manufacturer. (Price unknown) Contact:
Jedcom (UK) Ltd.
5 West Street
Tavistock, Devon PL 19 8AD
Phone 01822 617611
Fax: 01822 617619
added August 8, 1998