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Lodz Papers in Pragmatics

Founded by Cap, Piotr

Editor-in-Chief: Chilton, Paul / Kopytowska, Monika

2 Issues per year

CiteScore 2017: 0.35

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2017: 0.249
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2017: 0.074

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Establishing Diganostic Criteria: The Role of Clinical Pragmatics

Louise Cummings,
Published Online: 2012-06-01 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/lpp-2012-0005


The study of pragmatic disorders is of interest to speech-language pathologists who have a professional responsibility to assess and treat communication impairments. However, these disorders, it will be argued in this paper, have a significance beyond the clinical management of clients with communication impairments. Specifically, pragmatic disorders can now make a contribution to the diagnosis of a range of clinical conditions in which communication is adversely affected. These conditions include attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), the autistic spectrum disorders, schizophrenia and the dementias. Pragmatic disorders are already among the criteria used to diagnose some of these conditions (e.g. ADHD), although they are not described in these terms. In other conditions (e.g. the dementias), pragmatic disorders have potential diagnostic value in the absence of reliable biomarkers of these conditions and similar initial presenting symptoms. Using clinical data, and the findings of empirical studies, the case is made for the inclusion and/or greater integration of pragmatic disorders in the formal classificatory systems that are used to diagnose a range of disorders. A previously unrecognised role for pragmatic impairments in the nosology and diagnosis of clinical disorders is thereby established.

Keywords: attention deficit hyperactivity disorder; clinical pragmatics; dementia; pragmatic disorder; schizophrenia; speech-language pathology

About the article

Louise Cummings,

Louise Cummings is Professor of Linguistics at Nottingham Trent University in the UK. Her research interests are largely in pragmatics and clinical linguistics. She is the author of Pragmatics: A Multidisciplinary Perspective, Clinical Linguistics, Clinical Pragmatics, Communication Disorders and Topics in Clinical Pragmatics. Louise Cummings has edited The Routledge Pragmatics Encyclopedia. She has held Visiting Fellowships in the Department of Philosophy at Harvard University and in the Centre for Research in the Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities (CRASSH) at Cambridge University.

Published Online: 2012-06-01

Published in Print: 2012-06-01

Citation Information: Lodz Papers in Pragmatics, Volume 8, Issue 1, Pages 61–84, ISSN (Online) 1898-4436, ISSN (Print) 1895-6106, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/lpp-2012-0005.

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