Alberta Education defines fluency disorder as,
Stuttering, also known as stammering or dysfluency, is a disruption in the normal flow of speech. The term “stuttering” covers a wide spectrum of severity: it may include individuals with barely perceptible difficulties, for whom the condition is largely cosmetic, as well as others with extremely severe symptoms, for whom the problem prevents most oral communication. It is characterized by involuntary sound repetition, the prolongation of certain sounds, syllables or words, or the abnormal hesitation or pausing before speech (referred to as blocks). Individuals who stutter may avoid certain words and substitute others. The impact of stuttering on a person’s functioning and emotional state can include fears of having to enunciate specific vowels or consonants, fears of being caught stuttering in social situations, self-imposed isolation, anxiety, stress, shame or a feeling of “loss of control” during speech.
Some examples of stuttering include:
- "W- W- W- Where are you going?" (Part-word repetition: The person is having difficulty moving from the "w" in "where" to the remaining sounds in the word. On the fourth attempt, he successfully completes the word.)
- "SSSS ave me a seat." (Sound prolongation: The person is having difficulty moving from the "s" in "save" to the remaining sounds in the word. He continues to say the "s" sound until he is able to complete the word.)
- "I'll meet you - um um you know like - around six o'clock." (A series of interjections: The person expects to have difficulty smoothly joining the word "you" with the word "around." In response to the anticipated difficulty, he produces several interjections until he is able to say the word "around" smoothly.)