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Investigating the relationship between speech discrimination skills in reception class and receptive language ability in year two

Raby, H; (2007) Investigating the relationship between speech discrimination skills in reception class and receptive language ability in year two. Doctoral thesis , UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

Language development is affected by a multitude of factors. Many studies have shown a correlation between auditory discrimination and language ability in children up to three years old (Benasich et al, 2002 Talay, 1996 Tsao et al, 2004). Evidence of a link between auditory discrimination and language abilities in older school-aged children has been less clear. This study investigates the relationship between speech discrimination in 4-5 year olds and receptive language ability at 6-7 years and hypothesises that there will be a relationship between the two. Previous research has shown that children have more difficulties discriminating speech as the level of background noise increases, and that children with language difficulties have greater difficulties than those without (Ziegler et al, 2005 Bradlow et al, 2003 Cunningham et al, 2001). This study also hypothesises that speech discrimination in noise scores at 4-5 years will be a better predictor of receptive language at 6-7 years than speech discrimination in quiet scores. Speech discrimination skills and receptive language were assessed in 54 children when they were in reception class (4-5 years) and when they were in year two (6-7 years). The results showed that there was no significant correlation between speech discrimination at 4-5 years and receptive language at 6-7 years. Regression analyses indicated that speech discrimination scores in quiet and noise at 4-5 years did not add to the predictive value of a language measure at 4-5 years in predicting language outcome at 6-7 years. The study concluded that although there was no significant correlation between speech discrimination at 4-5 years and receptive language at 6-7 years, it is possible that earlier speech discrimination difficulties that have since resolved, contribute to later language difficulties. Measuring speech discrimination skills at 4-5 years could still be a useful clinical tool to identify children that have difficulties that might make understanding language more effortful, even if they do not lead to persisting receptive language difficulties, and who may be at risk for expressive language or literacy difficulties.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Title: Investigating the relationship between speech discrimination skills in reception class and receptive language ability in year two
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Additional information: Thesis digitised by ProQuest.
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences > Language and Cognition
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1569311
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