Suggestions for Improving the Investigation of Gesture in Aphasia


    When we speak, we gesture, and indeed, persons with aphasia gesture more frequently. The reason(s) for this is still being investigated, spurring an increase in the number of studies of gesture in persons with aphasia. As the number of studies increases, so too does the need for a shared set of best practices for gesture research in aphasia. After briefly reviewing the importance and use of gesture in persons with aphasia, this viewpoint puts forth methodological and design considerations when evaluating gesture in persons with aphasia.

    Method & Results

    We explore several different design and methodological considerations for gesture research specific to persons with aphasia, such as video angle specifications, data collection techniques, and analysis considerations. The goal of these suggestions is to develop transparent and reproducible methods for evaluating gesture in aphasia to build a solid foundation for continued work in this area.


    We have proposed that it is critical to evaluate multimodal communication in a methodologically robust way to facilitate increased knowledge about the relationship of gesture to spoken language, cognition, and to other aspects of living with aphasia and recovery from aphasia. We conclude by postulating future directions for gesture research in aphasia.


    Additional Resources