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ERIC Number: ED131926
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1976-Mar
Pages: 25
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: N/A
Describing Children's Linguistic Development.
Wells, Gordon
This is a study of language development utilizing samples of spontaneous speech collected over three years from a representative group of children. The study is part of the Bristol Longitudinal Language Development Research Programme, the aim of which is to describe how children learn to talk; more specifically, to what extent all children develop language in the same way and what environmental factors affect the rate and success of this development. Subjects were 128 children from various socioeconomic backgrounds, half 15 months and half 39 months at the beginning of the study. Each child was observed at three monthly interviews over a period of 2 1/4 years and on each occasion, tests of various aspects of linguistic ability were administered. In addition, recordings were made by a radio-microphone worn by the child throughout the day. Preliminary results suggest that socioeconomic factors are not as strongly related to language development as the qualitative aspects of the child's linguistic experience. If, as is suggested, the ability to take part in dialogue by adapting one's speech to the requirements of the communication situation is important, the linguistic disadvantage experienced by some children on entry into school may not be due so much to lack of formal linguistic resources, differences in dialect or accent, but rather to what their preschool experience has taught or not taught them about what people do with language. (Author/MS)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: N/A
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom (Bristol)