Partner Age as a Variable in the Conversational Performance of Specifically Language-Impaired and Normal-Language Children The language used by a group of 4 ½–6-year-old specifically language-impaired (SLI) children, a group of same-aged normal-language (NL) children, and a group of younger NL children were observed in three dyadic contexts: with an adult female, with a peer, and with a toddler. Ten measures were selected to analyze ... Research Article
Research Article  |   September 01, 1984
Partner Age as a Variable in the Conversational Performance of Specifically Language-Impaired and Normal-Language Children
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Marc E. Fey
    University of Western Ontario, London
  • Laurence B. Leonard
    Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN
Article Information
Research Articles
Research Article   |   September 01, 1984
Partner Age as a Variable in the Conversational Performance of Specifically Language-Impaired and Normal-Language Children
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, September 1984, Vol. 27, 413-423. doi:10.1044/jshr.2703.413
History: Received July 5, 1983 , Accepted April 11, 1984
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, September 1984, Vol. 27, 413-423. doi:10.1044/jshr.2703.413
History: Received July 5, 1983; Accepted April 11, 1984

The language used by a group of 4 ½–6-year-old specifically language-impaired (SLI) children, a group of same-aged normal-language (NL) children, and a group of younger NL children were observed in three dyadic contexts: with an adult female, with a peer, and with a toddler. Ten measures were selected to analyze the children's performance across partner contexts. The results revealed that the SLI children were as assertive in the conversations as were the children in the same-aged NL group. Further, the SLI children modified their language in the same manner and to the same extent as the same-aged NL children on all but three measures: use of internal state questions, mean length of utterance, and mean preverb length. Their ability to adapt their speech based on the age-related characteristics of the partner appeared at times to be greater than that of the younger NL children.

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