The Stocker Probe


Rebecca Fredrickson and Sarah Vines


-developed by Beatrice Stocker and Robert Goldfarb

-a diagnostic tool used for both fluency and language assessment

-first published in 1976 and is currently in its 3rd edition


The Stocker Probe Technique

Initial Evaluation

Administration of the I Probes (I=initial)

                  These probes include objects with which the child is familiar

                  There are 5 levels of demand that are presented in random order

                  Each level asks a question associated with the probe (object) at hand

                  Each level elicits a different type of response corresponding to difficulty level

Level I brief one word response

                  Level II short response

                  Level III response requiring prepositional phrase

                  Level IV list a series of attributes

                  Level V elicits creative and lengthy responses


                  The child either stutters (-) or s/he does not (+)

Severity Ratings

                  1-10 disfluencies is normal to mild

                  11-20 disfluencies is moderate

                  21-30 disfluencies is severe

                  31 or more disfluencies is very severe

Determine a starting level for which to begin treatment

Find the lowest level at which the child stutters and then begin treatment one level below this point 


Use a stop watch and begin timing as soon as child begins to speak and once the child stutters stop the clock (this gives you a fluency count)

Take the average of three fluency counts to determine the baseline

Begin Treatment

                  During treatment use the O Probes as ongoing evaluation


                  This is done at the end of 25 weeks

                  Uses R Probes (which are the same as the I Probes)

                  Even though you are using the same objects you ask the questions in a different