Semantic Abilities in Children With Pragmatic Language Impairment: The Case of Picture Naming Skills PurposeThe semantic abilities of children with pragmatic language impairment (PLI) are subject to debate. The authors investigated picture naming and definition skills in 5-year-olds with PLI in comparison to typically developing children.Method84 children with PLI and 80 age-matched typically developing children completed receptive vocabulary, picture naming, and definition tasks.ResultsThe PLI ... Article
Article  |   February 01, 2011
Semantic Abilities in Children With Pragmatic Language Impairment: The Case of Picture Naming Skills
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Mieke Pauline Ketelaars
    Radboud University Nijmegen, Behavioural Science Institute, the Netherlands
  • Suzanne Irene Alphonsus Hermans
    Radboud University Nijmegen, Behavioural Science Institute, the Netherlands
  • Juliane Cuperus
    Sint Marie Eindhoven, the Netherlands
  • Kino Jansonius
    Sint Marie Eindhoven, the Netherlands
  • Ludo Verhoeven
    Radboud University Nijmegen, Behavioural Science Institute, the Netherlands
  • Contact author: Mieke Pauline Ketelaars, Behavioural Science Institute, Department of Special Education, Radboud University Nijmegen, P.O. Box 9104, 6500 HE Nijmegen, the Netherlands. E-mail: M.Ketelaars@pwo.ru.nl.
Article Information
Language Disorders / Social Communication & Pragmatics Disorders / Language
Article   |   February 01, 2011
Semantic Abilities in Children With Pragmatic Language Impairment: The Case of Picture Naming Skills
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, February 2011, Vol. 54, 87-98. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2010/09-0116)
History: Received June 7, 2009 , Revised November 16, 2009 , Accepted May 24, 2010
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, February 2011, Vol. 54, 87-98. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2010/09-0116)
History: Received June 7, 2009; Revised November 16, 2009; Accepted May 24, 2010
Web of Science® Times Cited: 1

PurposeThe semantic abilities of children with pragmatic language impairment (PLI) are subject to debate. The authors investigated picture naming and definition skills in 5-year-olds with PLI in comparison to typically developing children.

Method84 children with PLI and 80 age-matched typically developing children completed receptive vocabulary, picture naming, and definition tasks.

ResultsThe PLI group scored lower on the receptive vocabulary and picture naming tasks. Word length and frequency affected naming accuracy in both groups. Children with PLI showed higher numbers of semantic errors, nonrelated errors, and omissions and circumlocutions. The error-type distribution differed between groups: PLI children showed disproportionate levels of nonrelated errors. In the definition task, PLI children showed lower information accuracy for accurately named pictures and comparable accuracy for incorrectly named pictures. Qualitative analysis suggested a high incidence of pragmatically inappropriate definitions for the PLI group. Naming accuracy for both groups improved equally after giving semantic cues.

ConclusionsThese findings suggest a deficit in object identification and/or naming selection. It might be premature to conclude that children with PLI show normal semantic abilities. The results are largely consistent with a general language delay; however, there is also some evidence of a qualitative difference between both groups.

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