Correlates and Cross-Linguistic Comparisons of Informativeness and Efficiency on Nicholas and Brookshire Discourse Stimuli in Spanish/English Bilingual Adults PurposeThe purpose of this study was to determine (a) correlates of informativeness and efficiency in discourse and (b) potential cross-linguistic and stimulus type (picture vs. nonpicture) differences in measures of informativeness and efficiency in Spanish/English bilingual adults in the United States.MethodEighty-eight Spanish/English young bilingual adults who self-reported being functional in ... Article
Article  |   August 01, 2013
Correlates and Cross-Linguistic Comparisons of Informativeness and Efficiency on Nicholas and Brookshire Discourse Stimuli in Spanish/English Bilingual Adults
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Lisa A. Edmonds
    University of Florida, Gainesville
  • Correspondence to Lisa A. Edmonds: edmonds@ufl.edu
  • Editor and Associate Editor: Janna Oetting
    Editor and Associate Editor: Janna Oetting×
Article Information
Special Populations / Cultural & Linguistic Diversity / Language
Article   |   August 01, 2013
Correlates and Cross-Linguistic Comparisons of Informativeness and Efficiency on Nicholas and Brookshire Discourse Stimuli in Spanish/English Bilingual Adults
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, August 2013, Vol. 56, 1298-1313. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2012/12-0065)
History: Received February 26, 2012 , Revised September 5, 2012 , Accepted December 11, 2012
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, August 2013, Vol. 56, 1298-1313. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2012/12-0065)
History: Received February 26, 2012; Revised September 5, 2012; Accepted December 11, 2012
Web of Science® Times Cited: 1

PurposeThe purpose of this study was to determine (a) correlates of informativeness and efficiency in discourse and (b) potential cross-linguistic and stimulus type (picture vs. nonpicture) differences in measures of informativeness and efficiency in Spanish/English bilingual adults in the United States.

MethodEighty-eight Spanish/English young bilingual adults who self-reported being functional in both languages completed the discourse tasks from Nicholas and Brookshire (1993) . Responses were analyzed with an adapted version of the scoring system that is based on correct information units (CIUs), the variable corresponding to informative words.

ResultsRegression analyses showed that among participant-provided data, self-ratings of proficiency accounted for most of the variance in informativeness over time (CIUs/min), although usage was also important in Spanish. When naming accuracy was added as a variable, verb-naming accuracy superseded all variables as accounting for the most variance in CIUs/min across languages. Overall, participants provided more information more efficiently in English as compared to Spanish.

ConclusionsThe results provide preliminary evidence that Nicholas and Brookshire stimuli and scoring procedures may be appropriate for Spanish/English bilinguals and suggest that self-ratings and usage information collected from participants, as well as naming accuracies, may be predictive of informativeness and efficiency in discourse.

Acknowledgments
I would like to acknowledge and extend my gratitude to the following research assistants in the Aphasia and Bilingualism Lab at the University of Florida who assisted with data collection, management, and analysis: Vanessa Maltby, Maria Sarmiento, Giselle Mena, Joanna Vidal, Ximena Arias, Gabriel Mayora, Danielle Thiemann, Amanda Bruner, and Milena Wong.
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