Word-Learning by Preschoolers With Specific Language Impairment What Predicts Success? Research Article
Research Article  |   February 01, 2003
Word-Learning by Preschoolers With Specific Language Impairment
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Shelley Gray, PhD
    University of Arizona, Tucson
  • Contact author: Shelley Gray, PhD, Department of Speech and Hearing Science, P.O. Box 870102, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ 85287-0102.
    Contact author: Shelley Gray, PhD, Department of Speech and Hearing Science, P.O. Box 870102, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ 85287-0102.×
  • Corresponding author: E-mail: Shelley.Gray@asu.edu
  • * Currently affiliated with Arizona State University, Tempe
    Currently affiliated with Arizona State University, Tempe×
Article Information
Development / Language Disorders / Specific Language Impairment / Language / Research Articles
Research Article   |   February 01, 2003
Word-Learning by Preschoolers With Specific Language Impairment
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, February 2003, Vol. 46, 56-67. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2003/005)
History: Received December 18, 2001 , Accepted July 30, 2002
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, February 2003, Vol. 46, 56-67. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2003/005)
History: Received December 18, 2001; Accepted July 30, 2002
Web of Science® Times Cited: 97

Thirty preschool children with specific language impairment (SLI) and 30 agematched controls with normal language (NL) participated in a study to compare group performance and to examine the relationship between fast mapping and word learning and between comprehension and production of new words. The groups performed similarly on the fast-mapping task. The NL group comprehended and produced significantly more words than the SLI group, and did so in fewer trials. Language test scores did not predict word-learning performance for either group. Some children with SLI may need to hear a new word twice as many times as their NL peers before comprehending it and may need twice as many opportunities to practice producing the word before using it independently.

Acknowledgments
This research was funded, in part, by a Student Research Grant in Early Childhood Language Disorders from the American Speech-Language-Hearing Foundation and by the Tucson Scottish Rite Charitable Foundation. I thank Linda Swisher, Barbara Kiernan, Richard Curlee, LouAnn Gerken, and Theodore Glattke for their review of this research; Wendy Kulin and Val Hughes for assistance with materials preparation; and the undergraduate students from the University of Arizona Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences who served as research assistants.
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