Word Frequency and Age Effects in Normally Developing Children's Phonological Processing Eleven kindergarten-age students and 11 second-grade students were asked to perform each of four phonological processing tasks: (a) confrontation naming of object drawings, (b) rapid sequential naming of object drawings and letters, (c) segmentation of words into sounds, and (d) blending sounds to produce words. Response accuracy and, for the ... Research Article
Research Article  |   October 01, 1996
Word Frequency and Age Effects in Normally Developing Children's Phonological Processing
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Gary A. Troia
    University of Maryland College Park
  • Froma P. Roth
    University of Maryland College Park
  • Grace H. Yeni-Komshian
    University of Maryland College Park
  • Contact author: Gary A. Troia, Department of Hearing and Speech Sciences, 0100 LeFrak Hall, University of Maryland, College Park, MD 20742
    Contact author: Gary A. Troia, Department of Hearing and Speech Sciences, 0100 LeFrak Hall, University of Maryland, College Park, MD 20742×
Article Information
Development / Speech, Voice & Prosody / Language / Research Articles
Research Article   |   October 01, 1996
Word Frequency and Age Effects in Normally Developing Children's Phonological Processing
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, October 1996, Vol. 39, 1099-1108. doi:10.1044/jshr.3905.1099
History: Received April 17, 1995 , Accepted May 22, 1996
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, October 1996, Vol. 39, 1099-1108. doi:10.1044/jshr.3905.1099
History: Received April 17, 1995; Accepted May 22, 1996

Eleven kindergarten-age students and 11 second-grade students were asked to perform each of four phonological processing tasks: (a) confrontation naming of object drawings, (b) rapid sequential naming of object drawings and letters, (c) segmentation of words into sounds, and (d) blending sounds to produce words. Response accuracy and, for the picture naming tasks, response latency were measured. In addition, single-word reading ability and silent reading comprehension were evaluated. Results indicated that high-frequency stimuli were named faster and, in one task, more accurately than low-frequency stimuli. Blending sounds to produce high-frequency words was less difficult than blending sounds to produce low-frequency words, but word frequency did not affect sound segmentation performance. Children in second grade generally were faster and more accurate than kindergarten children in naming pictures. They also were able to segment more sounds and correctly blend sounds to produce more target words than kindergarten students. Confrontation naming accuracy, rapid object-and letter-naming latency, and sound segmentation and blending accuracy were intercorrelated and were related to word recognition and to reading comprehension. Serial naming speed was highly related to phonological awareness in kindergarten, whereas confrontation naming accuracy was highly related to phonological awareness in second grade. A limited cognitive resources framework was adopted to interpret these findings.

Acknowledgments
This article is based on the thesis of the first author submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the master of arts degree for the Department of Hearing and Speech Sciences at the University of Maryland.
The authors are indebted to the administration, faculty, parents, and students of Fallsmead Elementary School and Montgomery County Public Schools for their assistance in subject selection and task administration. We gratefully acknowledge the contributions of Dr. Nan Bemstein-Ratner during the preparation of the original thesis manuscript.
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