The Talking Points module is a versatile one that can be used for anything from a conversation starter for indivduals or groups, through to semantic feature analysis to boost word-finding. It consists of a picture conveying a topic, and questions on that topic. You can present the questions in written or spoken form.

Read on to find out how you can configure Talking Points for different purposes.

Question Scope

There are three scopes to the questions in Talking Points:

Personal questions ask about personal experiences, habits, preferences and opinions. These are generally the best for prompting conversation.

Quiz questions tap general knowledge, but can also work well in prompting conversation.

SFA questions are intended for use in Semantic Feature Analysis, a well established therapy technique for improving word-finding.

You can select any combination of these three scopes, depending on what you want to work on. If you choose a mixture, you’ll notice that the personal questions appear in paler blue than the others. This is to allow you to recognise them at a glance without having to read them first.

To use as a conversation starter, select the personal questions. You might also want to include the quiz questions, as these too can prompt conversation.

To work on Semantic Feature Analysis, select SFA. However it can work well to include personal questions as well when doing SFA, since personal experiences and opinions can be considered to be part of an individual’s semantic representations (see section on semantics).

Question Type

Whichever scope(s) you choose to work on, you can decide whether you want the questions to be open questions (wh-questions) or closed questions with a yes/no answer. Limiting the selection to just yes/no questions can make it easier for people with severe aphasia to respond effectively. You can also choose whether to include forced alternative questions (e.g. “Do you prefer a bath or a shower?”), and generative questions, in which there’s a wide range of options (e.g. “How many farm animals can you think of?”).

For more ideas about how to use Talking Points, look at the section on Cued Conversation (insert link to page)

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