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Research Article Open Access
Purpose: The purpose of this study was to investigate whether school-age observer perceptions of children who stutter varied based upon the presence or absence of a self-disclosure statement. The secondary purpose was to determine if school-age observer perceptions were susceptible to the same gender bias observed in adult males versus females who stutter. Method: Observers (N=130) were randomly assigned to view two of four possible videos (i.e., male selfdisclosure, male no self-disclosure, female self-disclosure, and female no self-disclosure). Immediately after viewing both videos, observers completed a survey assessing their perceptions of the speakers. Results: Observers were significantly more likely to select self-disclosure videos as more friendly and they reported being less distracted when they were viewing videos in which the speakers self-disclosed, when controlling for observer and speaker gender. Additionally, when controlling for self-disclosure and observer gender, observers were more likely to choose the female speaker as more friendly and intelligent compared to the male speaker and they were also more likely to select the male speaker as more unfriendly and unintelligent compared to the female speaker. Conclusion: Results from this study lend further support regarding the effectiveness of self-disclosure as a technique that children who stutter can employ in order to positively influence listener perceptions.
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