Date Approved


Graduate Degree Type


Degree Name

Speech Language Pathology (M.S.)

Degree Program

Communication Sciences and Disorders

First Advisor

Dr. Meri Goehring

Second Advisor

Dr. Laure E. Lenkey

Third Advisor

Dr. Teresa Bacon-Baguley

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Cara Singer

Academic Year



The dramatic increase in the aging population and predicted rise in individuals diagnosed with a dementia-related disorder in the next 30 years has sparked an increase in the exploration of gerontology and best practice in dementia care (Curyto & Vriesman, 2016). Additionally, each person living with dementia spends less than two percent of their day engaging in social communication with a care worker (Ward et al, 2005). With a significant increase in the development of dementia-related disorders and minimal social interaction, understanding the manifestations of dementia and methods of effective communication between individuals with dementia-related disorders and direct care workers will be increasingly important as communication is beneficial and necessary for optimal care. In response to this rise in the aging population and reported lack of communication, the purpose of this study is to investigate the effectiveness of pre-recorded, presentation-based training in improving CNA perceived purpose and knowledge of dementia communication. Intended participants in this study were CNAs employed at residential care facilities deriving from differing demographic backgrounds with various levels of previous knowledge of dementia communication. Participants were asked to complete a virtual learning experience about best practice in dementia care and communication. Outcomes for perceived purpose and knowledge were represented on pre-, post-, and post-postquestionnaires and measured before and after exposure to the intended intervention method of pre-recorded, presentation-based learning. One CNA participated in the study with noted subtle changes to perceived purpose and knowledge of dementia communication following completion of pre-recorded, presentation-based learning. This study was largely limited by the co-occurrence of this study with the global pandemic known as COVID-19 with orders for social distancing and contact restrictions. Therefore, Due to limited responses, little is known about the effectiveness of this pre-recorded, presentation-based learning for CNAs working in residential care facilities. Further research with a greater number of participants is warranted to further understand the impact of pre-recorded, presentation-based learning on CNAs’ perceived purpose and knowledge of dementia communication. If found effective, pre-recorded presentation-based learning has the potential for greater utilization with the collaboration of speech-language pathologists (SLPs) and other medical professionals to develop relevant programs.