Promoting consistent use of the communication function classification system (CFCS)

Barbara Jane Cunningham, Peter Rosenbaum, Mary Jo Cooley Hidecker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Purpose: We developed a Knowledge Translation (KT) intervention to standardize the way speech-language pathologists working in Ontario Canadas Preschool Speech and Language Program (PSLP) used the Communication Function Classification System (CFCS). This tool was being used as part of a provincial program evaluation and standardizing its use was critical for establishing reliability and validity within the provincial dataset. Method: Two theoretical foundations - Diffusion of Innovations and the Communication Persuasion Matrix - were used to develop and disseminate the intervention to standardize use of the CFCS among a cohort speech-language pathologists. A descriptive pre-test/post-test study was used to evaluate the intervention. Fifty-two participants completed an electronic pre-test survey, reviewed intervention materials online, and then immediately completed an electronic post-test survey. Results: The intervention improved clinicians understanding of how the CFCS should be used, their intentions to use the tool in the standardized way, and their abilities to make correct classifications using the tool. Conclusions: Findings from this work will be shared with representatives of the Ontario PSLP. The intervention may be disseminated to all speech-language pathologists working in the program. This study can be used as a model for developing and disseminating KT interventions for clinicians in paediatric rehabilitation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)195-204
Number of pages10
JournalDisability and Rehabilitation
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 16 2016

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 Informa UK Ltd.


  • Communication function classification system
  • innovations
  • program evaluation
  • speech-language pathology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Rehabilitation


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