Stuttering Frequency on Content and Function Words in Adults Who Stutter A Concept Revisited Research Article
Research Article  |   October 01, 2002
Stuttering Frequency on Content and Function Words in Adults Who Stutter
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Vikram N. Dayalu, PhD
    Stuttering Research Lab East Carolina University Greenville, NC
  • Joseph Kalinowski
    Stuttering Research Lab East Carolina University Greenville, NC
  • Andrew Stuart
    Stuttering Research Lab East Carolina University Greenville, NC
  • Donald Holbert
    Stuttering Research Lab East Carolina University Greenville, NC
  • Michael P. Rastatter
    Stuttering Research Lab East Carolina University Greenville, NC
  • Contact author: Vikram N. Dayalu, PhD, Stuttering Research Lab, Communication Sciences and Disorders, East Carolina University, Belk Annex, Oglesby Drive, Greenville, NC 27858. E-mail: vnd0729@mail.ecu.edu
Article Information
Speech, Voice & Prosodic Disorders / Fluency Disorders / Speech / Research Articles
Research Article   |   October 01, 2002
Stuttering Frequency on Content and Function Words in Adults Who Stutter
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, October 2002, Vol. 45, 871-878. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2002/070)
History: Received November 27, 2001 , Accepted June 14, 2002
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, October 2002, Vol. 45, 871-878. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2002/070)
History: Received November 27, 2001; Accepted June 14, 2002
Web of Science® Times Cited: 15

This study investigated stuttering frequency as a function of grammatical word type (i.e., content and function). Ten adults who stutter participated. Participants recited aloud a list of 126 words consisting of an equal number of content and function words, which were presented individually and visually via a laptop computer. Each word belonged to a single grammatical category. Further, words were matched for initial sound and approximate number of syllables. The results indicated that adults who stutter exhibited significantly greater stuttering frequency on content words when presented in isolation (p=0.018). It was conjectured that the responsible factor contributing to differences in stuttering frequency in adults who stutter resides in word frequency disparities between the two classes of words categories. That is, because the function words are limited in number and are used frequently, repeated use on the part of adults who stutter may lead to a generalized adaptation effect for function words and hence reduced stuttering frequency (as compared with content words).

Acknowledgments
The authors thank Dr. Arthur Abramson for his help in constructing the word list and addressing issues related to the content/function dichotomy. We also thank Dr. Peter Ladefoged, Dr. Caroline Smith, and Dr. Ignatius Mattingly for their valuable suggestions.
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