The Expressive Elaboration of Imaginative Narratives by Children With Specific Language Impairment PurposeThis study investigated the expressive elaboration of narratives from children with specific language impairment (SLI).MethodForty-eight 6- and 8-year-old children with SLI were compared with forty-eight 6- and 8-year-old typical language (TL) children. Two imaginative narratives were scored for 14 elements of expressive elaboration in 3 categories. A subset of simple ... Article
Article  |   August 01, 2009
The Expressive Elaboration of Imaginative Narratives by Children With Specific Language Impairment
 
Author Notes
  • Disclosure Statement
    Disclosure Statement×
    The second author (Ronald B. Gillam) has a financial interest in the Test of Narrative Language (TNL; Gillam & Pearson, 2004) elicitation materials that were used in this study.
    The second author (Ronald B. Gillam) has a financial interest in the Test of Narrative Language (TNL; Gillam & Pearson, 2004) elicitation materials that were used in this study.×
  • Contact author: Teresa A. Ukrainetz, Division of Communication Disorders, University of Wyoming, Dept. 3311, 1000 East University Avenue, Laramie, WY 82071-3311. E-mail: tukraine@uwyo.edu.
Article Information
Language Disorders / Specific Language Impairment / Language
Article   |   August 01, 2009
The Expressive Elaboration of Imaginative Narratives by Children With Specific Language Impairment
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, August 2009, Vol. 52, 883-898. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2009/07-0133)
History: Received June 18, 2007 , Accepted November 29, 2008
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, August 2009, Vol. 52, 883-898. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2009/07-0133)
History: Received June 18, 2007; Accepted November 29, 2008
Web of Science® Times Cited: 19

PurposeThis study investigated the expressive elaboration of narratives from children with specific language impairment (SLI).

MethodForty-eight 6- and 8-year-old children with SLI were compared with forty-eight 6- and 8-year-old typical language (TL) children. Two imaginative narratives were scored for 14 elements of expressive elaboration in 3 categories. A subset of simple elements was analyzed separately. The effect of adult models and context was also considered.

ResultsChildren with SLI (whether 6 or 8 years of age) and younger TL children produced stories with significantly fewer appendages (e.g., Abstract, Coda), orientations (e.g., name, personality feature), and evaluations (e.g., interesting modifier, dialogue) than older TL children. The children with SLI and younger children showed significantly poorer performance even on simple elements such as character names and repetition (He ran and ran). Children with SLI, although performing lower than their TL age peers, demonstrated improvements from the 1st to the 2nd fictional story. Children with SLI were not differentially affected by the adult models.

ConclusionThis study shows that expressive elaboration of narratives is sensitive to age- and language-level differences. The results suggest that children with SLI need guidance on artful storytelling, even for simple story elements.

Acknowledgments
Thanks to Katrina Fisher, Heide Harm, and Amanda Woods for narrative coding. We would like to acknowledge Laura Justice, Joan Kaderavek, and Sarita Eisenberg for contributing narrative samples from typically developing children in their respective locations.
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