Use and Understanding of Adverbial Conjuncts A Developmental Study of Adolescents and Young Adults Research Article
Research Article  |   February 01, 1992
Use and Understanding of Adverbial Conjuncts
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Marilyn A. Nippold
    University of Oregon, Eugene
  • Ilsa E. Schwarz
    University of Oregon, Eugene
  • Robin A. Undlin
    Corvallis School District, Corvallis, OR
Article Information
Development / Swallowing, Dysphagia & Feeding Disorders / Cultural & Linguistic Diversity / School-Based Settings / Normal Language Processing / Language / Research Articles
Research Article   |   February 01, 1992
Use and Understanding of Adverbial Conjuncts
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, February 1992, Vol. 35, 108-118. doi:10.1044/jshr.3501.108
History: Received November 15, 1990 , Accepted June 5, 1991
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, February 1992, Vol. 35, 108-118. doi:10.1044/jshr.3501.108
History: Received November 15, 1990; Accepted June 5, 1991

The use and understanding of two types of adverbial conjuncts, concordant (e.g., similarly, moreover, consequently) and discordant (e.g., contrastively, rather, nevertheless), was examined developmentally in 120 adolescents and young adults. Four groups of 30 students participated. Mean ages of the groups were 12:9, 15:10, 19:2, and 23:8 (years:months). The results demonstrated an increasing ability to use and understand these words in the written mode. An interesting discrepancy emerged between the use and the understanding of adverbial conjuncts, a finding that resembled the well-documented discrepancy between the use and the understanding of spoken words in young children. Although young adults had mastered the words in terms of their understanding, they continued to show some difficulty using the words correctly. It was also found that the two types of conjuncts were equally difficult, a result that failed to support Piaget's (1928)  hypothesis concerning the greater difficulty of discordant connectives. Factors that may contribute to the development of adverbial conjuncts are discussed.

Acknowledgments
The authors express their appreciation to the students who participated in this study; to the school, college, and university administrators who granted permission to conduct the study; and to the principals, teachers, and secretaries who assisted in scheduling the testing sessions. Appreciation is also expressed to Gary Bricher for his assistance in producing the bar graphs and to the JSHR reviewers for their helpful comments on an earlier version of this article.
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