Classification of Children With Specific Language Impairment Longitudinal Considerations Research Article
Research Article  |   October 01, 1999
Classification of Children With Specific Language Impairment
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Gina Conti-Ramsden
    Centre for the Study of Language Impairments University of Manchester Manchester, United Kingdom
  • Nicola Botting
    Centre for the Study of Language Impairments University of Manchester Manchester, United Kingdom
Article Information
Language Disorders / Specific Language Impairment / Language / Research Articles
Research Article   |   October 01, 1999
Classification of Children With Specific Language Impairment
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, October 1999, Vol. 42, 1195-1204. doi:10.1044/jslhr.4205.1195
History: Received October 24, 1997 , Accepted February 17, 1999
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, October 1999, Vol. 42, 1195-1204. doi:10.1044/jslhr.4205.1195
History: Received October 24, 1997; Accepted February 17, 1999

This paper reports on the longitudinal results of a large project involving 242 seven-year-old children attending language units in England. Following our work outlining 6 subgroups of children with language impairment (Conti-Ramsden, Crutchley, & Botting, 1997), we examine the stability of the 6 subgroups of children with specific language impairment already identified, using data collected from the same children at age 8 years. The findings suggest there is considerable stability in the patterns of difficulties delineated by the classification system involving 6 subgroups. Poorer stability was evident in the classification of the children across time with 45% of children moving across subgroups. The membership stability of the proposed classification system was very similar to that found when the children were classified into 3 subgroups following another well-known system (Rapin, 1996). The findings are discussed with particular reference to issues surrounding the classification of children with SLI.

Acknowledgments
The authors gratefully acknowledge the support of the Nuffield Foundation for Grant AT251 [OD], Educational Transitions of Language-Impaired Children. We would also like to thank Alison Crutchley for help with data collection, Dr. Brian Faragher for statistical advice, and the schools and language units who gave their time and facilities for our assessments.
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