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ERIC Number: EJ984108
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Aug
Pages: 17
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-1092-4388
Effects of Sampling Context on Spontaneous Expressive Language in Males with Fragile X Syndrome or Down Syndrome
Kover, Sara T.; McDuffie, Andrea; Abbeduto, Leonard; Brown, W. Ted
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, v55 n4 p1022-1038 Aug 2012
Purpose: In this study, the authors examined the impact of sampling context on multiple aspects of expressive language in male participants with fragile X syndrome in comparison to male participants with Down syndrome or typical development. Method: Participants with fragile X syndrome (n = 27), ages 10-17 years, were matched groupwise on nonverbal mental age to adolescents with Down syndrome (n = 15) and typically developing 3- to 6-year-olds (n = 15). Language sampling contexts were an interview-style conversation and narration of a wordless book, with scripted examiner behavior. Language was assessed in terms of amount of talk, mean length of communication unit (MLCU), lexical diversity, fluency, and intelligibility. Results: Participants with fragile X syndrome had lower MLCU and lexical diversity than did participants with typical development. Participants with Down syndrome produced yet lower MLCU. A differential effect of context among those with fragile X syndrome, Down syndrome, and typical development emerged for the number of attempts per minute, MLCU, and fluency. For participants with fragile X syndrome, autism symptom severity related to the number of utterances produced in conversation. Aspects of examiner behavior related to participant performance. Conclusion: Sampling context characteristics should be considered when assessing expressive language in individuals with neurodevelopmental disabilities.
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 - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Assessments and Surveys: Mean Length of Utterance