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Speech fluency disorders are among the most frequent regular phenomena of language acquisition in children. Though, if the symptoms are manifest until adolsecence  or adulthood (prevalence of 1%), the symptomatology, i.e. stuttering, frequently represents a heavy psychic burden and a threat to social, academic and professional participation. A timely diagnosis and competent intervention already at early childhood age offer, irregardless of possible remissions, the evidentially best protection against the chronification of stuttering.Though stuttering attracts broad interdisciplinary attention, to date there is no continuously successful therapeutic apporach. Corresponding to the complexity of the clinical picture, an idiographic, logopaedic,  pedagogic, psychotherapeutic and / or systemic treatment approach is necessary. In the department of Language & Communication, three relevant core areas have crystallised.

  • Development, realisation (in the ambulatory for speech-language pathology) and evaluation of speech-language pathology group therapy concepts for stuttering school children. This special format features a wealth of offers and chances to respond to the communication disorder acknowledging the specific dynamics of interpersonal relationships.

  • Countinuous counselling by means of tight personal and spatial networking with the contact and counselling information centre for parents of stuttering children of the city of Dortmund.

  • Systemic work consistently proves significant for the treatment. Therefore this aspect urgently requires deepened research and development.
  • Research project „Families with stuttering children“

Object of our research is the systemic perspective, that is the view of the familiy on the child's stuttering. By means of narrative interviews with parents concerned, the needs concerning their child, therapy / support programmes / school as well as themselves were determined. The so far  quantitatively and descriptively analysed data material is at present being evaluated as to qualitative characteristics, with the aim of transforming the findings into demand-oriented and participative counselling concepts.



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  • Subellok, K., Katz-Bernstein, N. & Vinbruck, C. (2008a). Mastering Bullying?! Research with stammering school children and their parents. Speaking out. BSA’s quarterly magazine, spring edition, 10.
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