Detection of Lexical and Morphological Anomalies by Children With and Without Language Impairment PurposeThe abilities of 5-year-old children with and without language impairment (LI) to detect anomalies involving lexical items and grammatical morphemes in stories were compared. The influence of sentence versus discourse context on lexical anomaly detection rates was explored.MethodThe participants were read 3 story scripts and asked to detect the anomalies ... Research Article
Research Article  |   February 01, 2014
Detection of Lexical and Morphological Anomalies by Children With and Without Language Impairment
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Monika Pawłowska
    University of North Dakota, Grand Forks
  • Sarah Robinson
    University of North Dakota, Grand Forks
  • Amebu Seddoh
    University of North Dakota, Grand Forks
  • Disclosure:The authors have declared that no competing interests existed at the time of publication.
    Disclosure:The authors have declared that no competing interests existed at the time of publication.×
  • Correspondence to Monika Pawłowska: monika.pawlowska@email.und.edu
  • Editor and Associate Editor: Janna Oetting
    Editor and Associate Editor: Janna Oetting×
Article Information
Language Disorders / Language
Research Article   |   February 01, 2014
Detection of Lexical and Morphological Anomalies by Children With and Without Language Impairment
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, February 2014, Vol. 57, 236-246. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2013/12-0241)
History: Received July 31, 2012 , Revised January 15, 2013 , Accepted June 3, 2013
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, February 2014, Vol. 57, 236-246. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2013/12-0241)
History: Received July 31, 2012; Revised January 15, 2013; Accepted June 3, 2013

PurposeThe abilities of 5-year-old children with and without language impairment (LI) to detect anomalies involving lexical items and grammatical morphemes in stories were compared. The influence of sentence versus discourse context on lexical anomaly detection rates was explored.

MethodThe participants were read 3 story scripts and asked to detect the anomalies embedded in them.

ResultsTypically developing (TD) children outperformed their peers with LI across the board. For both groups, lexical anomalies were easier to detect than morphological anomalies. Similarly, anomalous nouns were easier for both groups to detect compared with anomalous verbs. The latter presented a particular challenge to the children with LI. Both groups had greater difficulty with lexical anomaly detection in discourse relative to sentence context.

ConclusionThese outcomes suggest that children's ability to detect anomalies is sensitive to the nature of the anomaly and the linguistic context involved in anomaly detection. Future research may address the relative role of linguistic and cognitive factors in anomaly detection.

Acknowledgments
We are grateful to the families and children who participated in the study. We also appreciate the support of the Grand Forks Head Start director, Priscilla Mitchell; the Head Start speech-language pathologists, Lori LaHaise and Roxanna Jordheim; and the Head Start teachers. We thank our students Ellie Lindsay and Kristen Hughes and colleagues Alycia Cummings, Manish Rami, and John Madden for their help at various stages of the project. Partial reports of the study were presented at the Symposium on Research in Child Language Disorders (June 2011, Madison, WI) and at the Annual Convention of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (November 2011, San Diego, CA).
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