ERIC Number: ED196548
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1980-Jan
Reference Count: N/A
The Relationship Between Sensorimotor Behaviors and Language in Socioeconomically Depressed Infants.
O'Connell, Joanne Curry; Farran, Dale C.
The purpose of this study was to determine the relationship between high risk infants' sensorimotor development and their use of intentional communications. Twenty-six 20-month-old infants, selected at birth by use of High Risk Index, were studied. At 15 months of age each infant was administered five scales from the Uzgiris-Hunt Ordinal Scales of Psychological Development. Each infant was then observed at 20 months of age with his/her mother in two standardized settings. In the first setting, which consisted of a play interaction situation between the infant and his/her mother, information was obtained on how the infant communicates intentionally to his/her mother using the "showing" function of communication. The "showing" function of communication was measured by the infant's use of nonverbal behavior (pointing, showing off), vocalization and actual words to obtain the mother's attention. In the second setting which consisted of the administration of an experimental task to the infant, again with the mother present, information was obtained on how the infant communicates using the "requesting" function of communication. The "requesting" function of communication consisted of commands or requests by the infant to the mother or experimenter in order to attain an object or to require the mother or the experimenter to act in some way. Results indicated that measures of the "showing" function were significantly related to only one of the Uzgiris-Hunt Scales -- the object permanence scale. Measures of the "requesting" function were significantly related to two of the Uzgiris-Hunt scales -- the vocal imitation scale and the object schemes scale. It is concluded that this study does not provide strong, consistent evidence to support the notion of a relationship between infants' cognition and language. (Author/MP)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Bureau of Education for the Handicapped (DHEW/OE), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: N/A