Input Subject Diversity Accelerates the Growth of Tense and Agreement: Indirect Benefits From a Parent-Implemented Intervention Purpose This follow-up study examined whether a parent intervention that increased the diversity of lexical noun phrase subjects in parent input and accelerated children's sentence diversity (Hadley et al., 2017) had indirect benefits on tense/agreement (T/A) morphemes in parent input and children's spontaneous speech. Method Differences in input ... Research Article
Research Article  |   September 18, 2017
Input Subject Diversity Accelerates the Growth of Tense and Agreement: Indirect Benefits From a Parent-Implemented Intervention
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Pamela A. Hadley
    Department of Speech and Hearing Science, University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign
  • Matthew Rispoli
    Department of Speech and Hearing Science, University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign
  • Janet K. Holt
    Illinois Educational Research Council, Southern Illinois University, Edwardsville
  • 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 Pamela A. Hadley: phadley@illinois.edu
  • Editor-in-Chief: Sean Redmond
    Editor-in-Chief: Sean Redmond×
  • Editor: Jan de Jong
    Editor: Jan de Jong×
Article Information
Development / Research Issues, Methods & Evidence-Based Practice / Normal Language Processing / Language Disorders / Specific Language Impairment / Attention, Memory & Executive Functions / Speech, Voice & Prosody / Language / Research Articles
Research Article   |   September 18, 2017
Input Subject Diversity Accelerates the Growth of Tense and Agreement: Indirect Benefits From a Parent-Implemented Intervention
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, September 2017, Vol. 60, 2619-2635. doi:10.1044/2017_JSLHR-L-17-0008
History: Received January 6, 2017 , Revised March 12, 2017 , Accepted April 26, 2017
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, September 2017, Vol. 60, 2619-2635. doi:10.1044/2017_JSLHR-L-17-0008
History: Received January 6, 2017; Revised March 12, 2017; Accepted April 26, 2017

Purpose This follow-up study examined whether a parent intervention that increased the diversity of lexical noun phrase subjects in parent input and accelerated children's sentence diversity (Hadley et al., 2017) had indirect benefits on tense/agreement (T/A) morphemes in parent input and children's spontaneous speech.

Method Differences in input variables related to T/A marking were compared for parents who received toy talk instruction and a quasi-control group: input informativeness and full is declaratives. Language growth on tense agreement productivity (TAP) was modeled for 38 children from language samples obtained at 21, 24, 27, and 30 months. Parent input properties following instruction and children's growth in lexical diversity and sentence diversity were examined as predictors of TAP growth.

Results Instruction increased parent use of full is declaratives (ηp 2 ≥ .25) but not input informativeness. Children's sentence diversity was also a significant time-varying predictor of TAP growth. Two input variables, lexical noun phrase subject diversity and full is declaratives, were also significant predictors, even after controlling for children's sentence diversity.

Conclusions These findings establish a link between children's sentence diversity and the development of T/A morphemes and provide evidence about characteristics of input that facilitate growth in this grammatical system.

Acknowledgments
Funding for this study was supported by National Institute of Child Health & Human Development Grant R21 HD071316 (awarded to Pamela Hadley). Data collection for the quasi-control group was supported by National Science Foundation Grant BCS-08-22513 (awarded to Matthew Rispoli). Portions of this article were previously presented at the 2015 Callier Prize Conference on Children with Specific Language Impairment (SLI): Structuring Language Input to Improve Language Learning, Callier Center, Dallas, TX, and the 2015 Boston University Conference on Language Development. We extend sincere appreciation to the parents, children, and research assistants who made the work possible, as well as to Mary Kubalanza and Megan McKenna for their contributions to parent education and coaching and to Theodora Papastratakos, Ning Hsu, and Colleen Stern for their contributions to data coding.
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