• Development and Assessment of a Theater Group for People with Aphasia

      DeDe, Gayle; Temple University. Honors Program (Temple University. Libraries, 2020)
      The Philadelphia Aphasia Community at Temple (PACT) utilizes a group therapy approach for people with aphasia (PWA) by providing opportunities for PWA to enhance communication skills in an interest-driven setting. Recent research demonstrates how theater can improve the communication of ideas through both non-verbal and verbal means and can offer a medium through which PWA can interact and share their experiences. The main goal of this project was to examine how theater has been used with PWA and how theater games and experiences can be adapted for PWA at PACT. Existing studies were reviewed in regard to the benefits of theater for people with communication disabilities and the theories underlying different theater games. These concepts were applied to a pilot theater group at PACT. Nine PWA attended six weekly sessions throughout Summer 2019, and eight PWA attended weekly sessions throughout the Fall 2019 semester. Sessions incorporated different theater games and activities to gauge interests and skills, with support from Physical Therapy. Pre-/post-group testing included the Communication Confidence Rating Scale for People with Aphasia and a theater survey examining participant’s interests, skills, and knowledge of theater. Results from pre-test and post-test were compared to determine changes in perception of theater, enjoyment, and overall benefits of a theater group for PWA.