TITLE

A Longitudinal Study of Speech Timing in Young Children Later Found to Have Reading Disability

AUTHOR(S)
Smith, Allan B.; Smith, Susan Lambrecht; Locke, John L.; Bennett, Jane
PUB. DATE
October 2008
SOURCE
Journal of Speech, Language & Hearing Research;Oct2008, Vol. 51 Issue 5, p1300
SOURCE TYPE
Academic Journal
DOC. TYPE
Article
ABSTRACT
Purpose: This study examined the development of timing characteristics in early spontaneous speech of children who were later identified as having reading disability (RD). Method: Child-adult play sessions were recorded longitudinally at 2 and 3 years of age in 27 children, most of whom were at high familial risk for RD. For each speaking turn, the number of syllables was determined and an acoustic analysis measured the time allocated to articulation, pausing before speaking, and pausing during speaking. Results: In grade school, a reading battery identified 9 children with RD and 18 children without RD (9 at high risk, 9 at low risk). Early speaking rate was significantly slower in the group with RD, with significantly different patterns of pausing compared with children without RD. Group differences became more distinct by age 3, as longer speaking turns were attempted. Conclusions: The results are discussed in terms of speech and language formulation. Phonetic plans may be shorter and/or less specified in children with RD, surfacing as slow, short speaking turns with increased pausing relative to articulation. This explanation is consistent with several accounts of RD and provides a perspective on how speech and language deficits may manifest during spontaneous verbal interactions between young children and adults.
ACCESSION #
34789896

 

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