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ERIC Number: EJ1079391
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Oct
Pages: 14
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1092-4388
Language Ability Groups in Bilingual Children: A Latent Profile Analysis
Kapantzoglou, Maria; Restrepo, M. Adelaida; Gray, Shelley; Thompson, Marilyn S.
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, v58 n5 p1549-1562 Oct 2015
Purpose: Classifying children into two language ability groups, with and without language impairment, may underestimate the number of groups with distinct language ability patterns, or, alternatively, there may be only a single group characterized by a continuum of language performance. The purpose of the current study was to identify the number and characteristics of latent (unobservable) language ability groups in an unclassified sample of predominantly Spanish­speaking children. Method: An unclassified sample of 431 predominantly Spanish-­speaking 5-­ to 7­-year-­olds learning English participated in the study. The groups were identified on the basis of (a) language sample analyses (semantic, grammatical, and sentence-­length measures); (b) language processing tasks (phonological working memory and processing speed measures); and (c) nonverbal cognitive abilities assessed using a standardized measure. All tasks were administered in Spanish. Latent profile analysis was used to examine the number and nature of distinct language ability groups in the unclassified sample. Results: Results indicated that a three-group model best represented the data, characterized by low grammaticality in one group, low phonological working memory in another group, and average skills in a third group. Conclusion: Classifying children into two groups, those with and without language impairment, may lead to misidentification of language impairment.
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: Institute of Education Sciences (ED)
Authoring Institution: N/A
IES Funded: Yes
Grant or Contract Numbers: R324A080024