Is the Syntax Development of Dysphasic Children Deviant and Why? New Findings to an Old Question The present study addresses three main issues: First, it considers whether the syntax development of dysphasic preschoolers is adequately described as being a purely quantitative retardation or whether there are qualitative differences as well. Second, the suggestion put forward by Grimm (1987) that the syntactic deficits of dysphasic children result ... Research Article
Research Article  |   June 01, 1990
Is the Syntax Development of Dysphasic Children Deviant and Why? New Findings to an Old Question
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Hannelore Grimm
    University of Bielefeld
  • Sabine Weinert
    University of Bielefeld
  • Requests for reprints should be sent to Hannelore Grimm, Abteilung fur Psychologie, Universitat Bielefeld, Postfach 8640, 4800 Bielefeld 1, Federal Republic of Germany.
Article Information
Research Articles
Research Article   |   June 01, 1990
Is the Syntax Development of Dysphasic Children Deviant and Why? New Findings to an Old Question
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 1990, Vol. 33, 220-228. doi:10.1044/jshr.3302.220
History: Received January 20, 1989 , Accepted September 15, 1989
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 1990, Vol. 33, 220-228. doi:10.1044/jshr.3302.220
History: Received January 20, 1989; Accepted September 15, 1989

The present study addresses three main issues: First, it considers whether the syntax development of dysphasic preschoolers is adequately described as being a purely quantitative retardation or whether there are qualitative differences as well. Second, the suggestion put forward by Grimm (1987) that the syntactic deficits of dysphasic children result from deficient language processing strategies is further explored. Third, it asks whether the language deficits are related to specific structural and interactional aspects of the language input.

We examined two groups of children with comparable levels of language development: 8 dysphasic children, ages 3:9 to 4:8 years, and 8 control children, ages 2:1 to 2:11 years, who showed normal language development. The empirical evidence suggested that the dysphasic children’s syntax development was not only delayed but also deviant, and that the children’s deviant syntax structures were the result of insufficient language processing and could not be traced back to structural characteristics of the sentences used by their mothers.

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
This work was supported by the German Research Council (Research Grant Gr 588/5-6-6).
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