Articles  |   June 1989
Memory Scanning Speed in Language-Disordered Children
Article Information
Articles   |   June 1989
Memory Scanning Speed in Language-Disordered Children
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 1989, Vol. 32, 289-297. doi:10.1044/jshr.3202.289
History: Received January 4, 1988 , Accepted August 24, 1988
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 1989, Vol. 32, 289-297. doi:10.1044/jshr.3202.289
History: Received January 4, 1988; Accepted August 24, 1988

Twelve students from classrooms for children with severe language disorders and 12 age-matched controls were evaluated for short-term memory scanning speed using the Sternberg task. Sets of two, three, and four digits were presented via earphones as memory sets, followed by single-probe digits. Reaction time was measured for a verbal response of "yes" or "no" indicating whether the probe was a member of the initial set. Average per-item scanning speed for the normal children was 66 ms, which was significantly different from the 253-ms average scanning speed of the language-disordered group. Many similarities were noted in the performance of the two groups on the memory scanning task. No differences were found in estimates of encoding and response speed, in percentage of errors or in serial or numerical position effects across groups. Results indicate that children with developmental language disorders may demonstrate reduced processing speed or memory retrieval time, which could contribute to linguistic deficits.

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