ERIC Number: EJ1100999
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016-Apr
Abstractor: As Provided
An Investigation of Language Environment Analysis Measures for Spanish-English Bilingual Preschoolers from Migrant Low- Socioeconomic-Status Backgrounds
Wood, Carla; Diehm, Emily A.; Callender, Maya F.
Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools, v47 n2 p123-134 Apr 2016
Purpose: The current study was designed to (a) describe average hourly Language Environment Analysis (LENA) data for preschool-age Spanish--English bilinguals (SEBs) and typically developing monolingual peers and (b) compare LENA data with mean length of utterance in words (MLUw) and total number of words (TNW) calculated on a selected sample of consecutive excerpts of audio files (CEAFs). Method: Investigators examined average hourly child vocalizations from daylong LENA samples for 42 SEBs and 39 monolingual English-speaking preschoolers. The relationship between average hourly child vocalizations, conversational turns, and adult words from the daylong samples and MLUw from a 50-utterance CEAF was examined and compared between groups. Results: MLUw, TNW, average hourly child vocalizations, and conversational turns were lower for young SEBs than monolingual English-speaking peers. Average hourly child vocalizations were not strongly related to MLUw performance for monolingual or SEB participants (r = 0.29, r = 0.25, respectively). In a similar manner, average hourly conversational turns were not strongly related to MLUw for either group (r = 0.22, r = 0.21, respectively). Conclusions: Young SEBs from socioeconomically disadvantaged backgrounds showed lower average performance on LENA measures, MLUw, and TNW than monolingual English-speaking peers. MLUw from monolinguals were also lower than typical expectations when derived from CEAFs. LENA technology may be a promising tool for communication sampling with SEBs; however, more research is needed to establish norms for interpreting MLUw and TNW from selected CEAF samples.
Descriptors: Preschool Children, Bilingual Students, Spanish Speaking, English, Language Patterns, Oral Language, Child Language, Interpersonal Communication, Monolingualism, Comparative Analysis, Economically Disadvantaged, Communication Problems, Assistive Technology
American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. 2200 Research Blvd #250, Rockville, MD 20850. Tel: 301-296-5700; Fax: 301-296-8580; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; Web site: http://lshss.pubs.asha.org
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A