Year of Publication

2013

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Document Type

Master's Thesis

College

Health Sciences

Department

Communication Sciences & Disorders

First Advisor

Dr. Gilson Capilouto

Abstract

This study investigated the accuracy of healthy aging adults‟ self-rating of communication style, as measured by quantifiable measures of discourse performance. Ninety cognitively healthy adults participated and comprised three age cohorts (20s, 40s, 60s). Participants completed discourse tasks that included recounting a vacation, telling a story, and describing a picture. Participants also self-rated their communication style, placing them in a talkative or reserved cohort. Communication style was measured by discourse performance variables of interest: length of output (TNW) and informativeness (%IU). When presented with an unconstrained task (recounting a vacation), talkative and reserved groups, regardless of age, produced a similar TNW and %IU. When considering age and self-rating, talkative 20, 40, and 60 year olds produced a similar TNW and %IU as reserved 20, 40, and 60 year olds. Overall, adults were found to be inaccurate, due to lack of significant differences between self-rating groups. Results indicated the need for further research on the relationship between age, discourse performance, and accuracy of self-rating of communication style of healthy aging adults.

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