Idiom Understanding in Australian Youth: A Cross-Cultural Comparison In this developmental study, idiom understanding was examined in Australian students from Grades 5 and 8 (n = 50 per group; mean ages = 10:7 and 13:8, respectively). Twenty-four idioms with familiarity ratings ranging from high to low (as judged by Australian adolescents) were each presented in a brief story ... Research Note
Research Note  |   April 01, 1996
Idiom Understanding in Australian Youth: A Cross-Cultural Comparison
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Marilyn A. Nippold
    University of Oregon Eugene
  • Catherine L. Taylor
    Curtin University of Technology, Perth, Western Australia
  • Jennifer M. Baker
    South Fremantle, Perth, Western Australia
  • Contact author: Marilyn A. Nippold, Ph.D., Communication Disorders & Sciences, University of Oregon, Eugene, OR 97403. E-mail: nippold@oregon.uoregon.edu
Article Information
Development / Cultural & Linguistic Diversity / Language / Research Note
Research Note   |   April 01, 1996
Idiom Understanding in Australian Youth: A Cross-Cultural Comparison
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, April 1996, Vol. 39, 442-447. doi:10.1044/jshr.3902.442
History: Received February 6, 1995 , Accepted October 28, 1995
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, April 1996, Vol. 39, 442-447. doi:10.1044/jshr.3902.442
History: Received February 6, 1995; Accepted October 28, 1995

In this developmental study, idiom understanding was examined in Australian students from Grades 5 and 8 (n = 50 per group; mean ages = 10:7 and 13:8, respectively). Twenty-four idioms with familiarity ratings ranging from high to low (as judged by Australian adolescents) were each presented in a brief story context. The students read each story and selected the best interpretation of the idiom from a set of four answer choices. Results indicated that performance on the task improved as a function of increasing grade level and that idiom familiarity was significantly correlated to idiom understanding for both groups of students. These results, which were consistent with a previous study of American students of comparable educational levels (Nippold & Taylor, 1995), provide further support for the “language experience” hypothesis of figurative language development. In replicating the previous developmental study, evidence of external validity is provided.

Acknowledgments
The authors express their appreciation to the children and adolescents who participated as subjects in this study and to the teachers and other school personnel who assisted in locating the subjects and scheduling the testing.
Order a Subscription
Pay Per View
Entire Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research content & archive
24-hour access
This Article
24-hour access