ERIC Number: EJ1039334
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
Early Communicative Gestures Prospectively Predict Language Development and Executive Function in Early Childhood
Kuhn, Laura J.; Willoughby, Michael T.; Wilbourn, Makeba Parramore; Vernon-Feagans, Lynne; Blair, Clancy B.
Child Development, v85 n5 p1898-1914 Sep-Oct 2014
Using an epidemiological sample (N = 1,117) and a prospective longitudinal design, this study tested the direct and indirect effects of preverbal and verbal communication (15 months to 3 years) on executive function (EF) at age 4 years. Results indicated that whereas gestures (15 months), as well as language (2 and 3 years), were correlated with later EF (fs = 0.44), the effect was entirely mediated through later language. In contrast, language had significant direct and indirect effects on later EF. Exploratory analyses indicated that the pattern of results was comparable for low- and not-low-income families. The results were consistent with theoretical accounts of language as a precursor of EF ability, and highlighted gesture as an early indicator of EF.
Descriptors: Epidemiology, Nonverbal Communication, Longitudinal Studies, Verbal Communication, Toddlers, Young Children, Executive Function, Age Differences, Language Usage, Correlation, Language Acquisition, Low Income Groups, Socioeconomic Influences, Predictor Variables
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NIH); National Institute on Drug Abuse (DHHS/PHS)
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: R01 HD51502|P01 HD39667