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ERIC Number: EJ1060023
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Apr
Pages: 13
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1092-4388
Effects of Verb Familiarity on Finiteness Marking in Children with Specific Language Impairment
Abel, Alyson D.; Rice, Mabel L.; Bontempo, Daniel E.
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, v58 n2 p360-372 Apr 2015
Purpose: Children with specific language impairment (SLI) have known deficits in the verb lexicon and finiteness marking. This study investigated a potential relationship between these 2 variables in children with SLI and 2 control groups considering predictions from 2 different theoretical perspectives, morphosyntactic versus morphophonological. Method: Children with SLI, age-equivalent, and language-equivalent (LE) control children (n = 59) completed an experimental sentence imitation task that generated estimates of children's finiteness accuracy under 2 levels of verb familiarity--familiar real verbs versus unfamiliar real verbs--in clausal sites marked for finiteness. Imitations were coded and analyzed for overall accuracy as well as finiteness marking and verb root imitation accuracy. Results: Statistical comparisons revealed that children with SLI did not differ from LE children and were less accurate than age-equivalent children on all dependent variables: overall imitation, finiteness marking imitation, and verb root imitation accuracy. A significant Group × Condition interaction for finiteness marking revealed lower levels of accuracy on unfamiliar verbs for the SLI and LE groups only. Conclusions: Findings indicate a relationship between verb familiarity and finiteness marking in children with SLI and younger controls and help clarify the roles of morphosyntax, verb lexicon, and morphophonology.
American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA). 10801 Rockville Pike, Rockville, MD 20852. Tel: 800-638-8255; Fax: 301-571-0457; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: National Institutes of Health (DHHS)
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: T32DC00052; R01DC001803; P30DC005803