Word Recognition and Nonword Repetition in Children With Language Disorders: The Effects of Neighborhood Density, Lexical Frequency, and Phonotactic Probability Purpose The effects of neighborhood density (ND) and lexical frequency on word recognition and the effects of phonotactic probability (PP) on nonword repetition (NWR) were examined to gain insight into processing at the lexical and sublexical levels in typically developing (TD) children and children with developmental language problems. ... Research Article
Research Article  |   February 01, 2015
Word Recognition and Nonword Repetition in Children With Language Disorders: The Effects of Neighborhood Density, Lexical Frequency, and Phonotactic Probability
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Judith Rispens
    Amsterdam Center for Language and Communication, University of Amsterdam, the Netherlands
  • Anne Baker
    Amsterdam Center for Language and Communication, University of Amsterdam, the Netherlands
  • Iris Duinmeijer
    Amsterdam Center for Language and Communication, University of Amsterdam, the Netherlands
  • 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 Judith Rispens: J.E.Rispens@uva.nl
  • Editor: Rhea Paul
    Editor: Rhea Paul×
  • Associate Editor: Lizbeth Finestack
    Associate Editor: Lizbeth Finestack×
Article Information
Development / Language Disorders / Specific Language Impairment / Language / Research Articles
Research Article   |   February 01, 2015
Word Recognition and Nonword Repetition in Children With Language Disorders: The Effects of Neighborhood Density, Lexical Frequency, and Phonotactic Probability
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, February 2015, Vol. 58, 78-92. doi:10.1044/2014_JSLHR-L-12-0393
History: Received December 11, 2012 , Revised May 30, 2013 , Accepted October 10, 2014
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, February 2015, Vol. 58, 78-92. doi:10.1044/2014_JSLHR-L-12-0393
History: Received December 11, 2012; Revised May 30, 2013; Accepted October 10, 2014
Web of Science® Times Cited: 1

Purpose The effects of neighborhood density (ND) and lexical frequency on word recognition and the effects of phonotactic probability (PP) on nonword repetition (NWR) were examined to gain insight into processing at the lexical and sublexical levels in typically developing (TD) children and children with developmental language problems.

Method Tasks measuring NWR and word recognition were administered to 5 groups of children: 2 groups of TD children (5 and 8 years old), children with specific language impairment (SLI), children with reading impairment (RI), and children with SLI + RI (all 7–8 years old).

Results High ND had a negative effect on word recognition in the older TD children and in the children with RI only. There was no ND effect in the younger children or in the children with SLI, who all had lower receptive vocabulary scores than the age-matched TD children and the RI groups. For all groups, NWR items with low PP were more difficult to repeat than items with high PP. This effect was especially pronounced in children with RI.

Conclusion Both the stage of vocabulary development and the type of language impairment (SLI or RI) impact the way ND and PP affect word recognition and NWR.

Acknowledgments
This research was conducted as part of a Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research Veni research grant, awarded to the first author. The authors would like to thank all children and their parents for participating in this study and the staff at their schools for their help. We furthermore thank Wendy Boelhouwer, Christa Kerkhof, and Martine Jong for their assistance in collecting the data.
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