Grammatical Morpheme Effects on MLU "The Same Can Be Less" Revisited Research Note
Research Note  |   August 01, 2003
Grammatical Morpheme Effects on MLU
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Laurence B. Leonard
    Purdue University West Lafayette, IN
  • Denise Finneran
    Purdue University West Lafayette, IN
  • Contact author: Laurence B. Leonard, Department of Audiology and Speech Sciences, Heavilon Hall, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN 47907. E-mail: xdxl@purdue.edu
Article Information
Language Disorders / Specific Language Impairment / Language / Research Note
Research Note   |   August 01, 2003
Grammatical Morpheme Effects on MLU
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, August 2003, Vol. 46, 878-888. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2003/068)
History: Received September 29, 2002 , Accepted February 20, 2003
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, August 2003, Vol. 46, 878-888. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2003/068)
History: Received September 29, 2002; Accepted February 20, 2003
Web of Science® Times Cited: 14

Studies of children with specific language impairment (SLI) often include 2 comparison groups of typically developing children—a group matched according to age and a group matched according to mean length of utterance (MLU). In these studies, both groups of typically developing children often perform better than the SLI group. For many of these investigations, grammatical morpheme use constitutes the dependent measure. The use of grammatical morphemes requires longer utterances than the failure to use these morphemes. If children with SLI show less use of grammatical morphemes than typically developing children matched for MLU, shouldn't they produce some other detail of language more frequently than the MLU-matched group¿ In this article, the authors report 2 studies showing that such offsetting effects are not necessary in principle, given the nature of MLU. The implications of these findings are discussed.

Acknowledgments
The research reported in this article was supported by Research Grant R01–00458 from the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders.
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