Questions Raised About Cluttering Definition

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Re: Definition

From: Ken St. Louis
Date: 02 May 2010
Time: 12:13:06 -0500
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Jane, I think you hit the nail on the head here. Certainly, research will miss a few people previously or loosely defined as cluttering with a narrow definition, but I would argue that they probably have other disorders--not cluttering. For example, Weiss described the central language imbalance that underlies cluttering as being the source for another problem, namely disorderliness. If, for example, you believed that every clutterer must also be disorderly (however defined), then you would have a different group of individuals in your sample (and by inference, population) of clutterers than if disorderliness were not an obligatory symptom. Of course, if a person meeting the criteria (e.g., the LCD definition we proposed) also exhibited disorderliness, that would be fine. But individuals who exhibited disorderliness without the rate/disfluency/prosody/coarticulation symptoms would be excluded. I've argued for many years that when a pure clutterer can be found without such coexisting disorders, then the coexisting disorders cannot logically be part of a definition that has only necessary and sufficient conditions. Also, if a meaningful body of research is to be generated, I believe that we must be sure that we are defining the disorder in the same way. Ken

Last changed: 10/10/13