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Online Journal of Rural and Urban Research

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Speech language pathology deals with the evaluation and treatment of communicative disorders and swallowing disorders. Multiple reasons cause delayed or impaired speech leading to diagnosis or misdiagnosis as a speech disorder. Victor of Aveyron, a French feral child is one such case. He was described as an “incurable idiot and a hopeless case” by Pinel. Jean Marc Gaspard Itard, a young medical student, effectively adopted Victor into his home and published reports on his progress. He used a diary to record his progress in teaching him to speak and communicate human emotion. Victor showed significant early progress in understanding language and reading simple words, but failed to progress beyond a rudimentary level. It would have been beneficial if newer intervention methods such as phonetic transcription or phonetic alphabet were available during Itard’s treatment of Victor. Itard’s methods of treatment set the stage for more advanced techniques in the accuracy of speech analysis and expanded theories in the areas of special education for children with language-learning disabilities.

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