ERIC Number: ED267616
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1985-Oct
Reference Count: 0
Maternal Speech to Eight Month Old Infants: A Study of Adolescent and Older Mothers.
Van Houten, Lori J.; Coll, Cynthia Garcia
A study was carried out to test the hypothesis that mothers' speech to eight-month-olds differs as a function of maternal age. The subjects were 10 adolescent (mean age 16.5) and 10 older (mean age 24.5 years) mothers, all lower to middle class, first-time mothers, and Caucasian. Each mother and child pair was videotaped in a laboratory setting--first, in three minutes of face-to-face interaction, second, in a teaching situation, and third, in three minutes of free play. The videotapes were transcribed and coded for structural complexity, length of turn, discourse role of the utterance, and number of utterances. Results from repeated analyses of variance demonstrated main effects for maternal age but no significant interactions between maternal age and situation, with adolescent mothers less responsive to their infants and using fewer utterances in all situations. Given the importance accorded to maternal contingency in the acquisition process, the results are consistent with the hypothesis that children of adolescent mothers may be at risk for language development. (MSE)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Boston University Conference on Language Development (10th, Boston, MA, October 26, 1985).