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I have a question about confidentiality and using personal stories pertaining to clinical experiences in my SOP. I don’t plan to go into great detail about a specific patient, but I do want to talk about the patient's disorder and the process of the SLP pointing out the condition to me and then counseling the patient (I want to write it about that generally too). I can’t quite figure out where the line is on confidentiality, but there seems to be overwhelming advice to include personal stories so I'm torn! ?

For example (this would not be the polished finished version, however this shows the level of detail I want to use), I want to say something like, the SLP showed me the patient's video swallow study and explained a patient had X, which I found very interesting and had not previously learned about. Then we went to the patient’s room and I observed the SLP counsel the patient, which helped me understand the human side of the disorder. 

I would not give name, age, gender, or any other identifying characteristics. Just the disorder/condition. However, based on my application/resume, the location and rough timing (within a couple months) would be apparent. 

I’m considering talking about some other clinical experiences too, so my questions are:

- is just disclosing the disorder (and location/vague timing inadvertently through my application) appropriate?

- what would you say in addition, if anything, IS appropriate to include?

- for those in grad school already, did you do this in your SOP?

- for those applying now, will you include clinical examples in your SOP?

Thank you so much for your guidance!



Edited by Rezzy S.
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As long as you do not include their name, you can most definitely write about the patient, just refer to them as the client or patient. I would not even hesitate to do so because that is valuable experience! 

I am in the process of applying now, and will be submitting all applications in the upcoming week. In my letter of intent, I added a brief overview of my clinical experience, and talked about the disorders I have personally worked with in my speech and audiology practicums. 

I would add whatever is necessary to differentiate you from other candidates. 

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