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Relationships between speech perception, phonological awareness and language in the development of literacy

Kell, H; (2007) Relationships between speech perception, phonological awareness and language in the development of literacy. Doctoral thesis , UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

It is widely accepted that literacy development is associated with phonological awareness, speech perception and language skills. The extent to which speech perception and language contribute to literacy, directly or indirectly via phonological awareness, is however unclear. This study aimed to achieve a more holistic understanding by investigating the contribution of all variables to literacy, simultaneously. Consistent with the Comprehensive Language Approach, it was hypothesised that, along with language and phonological awareness, speech perception would also contribute uniquely to literacy, and that mutually-reinforcing relationships between all variables would be found, such that the pattern of contributions to literacy from all variables would differ as a function of literacy skill. A task battery assessing speech perception, language, phonological awareness and literacy was administered to a sample of fifty-four 6-year old children. Multiple regression analyses revealed only phonological awareness and speech perception to contribute uniquely to the full range of literacy scores, explaining 8% and 20% of the variance respectively. A mean split of literacy scores was used to compute upper and lower halves of the range. No significant contributions were found to either shared or unique variability in the upper half of the literacy range, likely due to restricted sensitivity in measures. In the lower half of the literacy range, unique contributions to literacy were found only for speech perception and language. Results appear to reflect greater stability in the relationship between speech perception and literacy than in relationships between language and literacy and phonological awareness and literacy, where level of literacy skill and experience may be implicated. Clinical implications for instruction and remediation are discussed, as is the need for further research to determine whether mutually-reinforcing relationships may assume different patterns, associated with different developmental stages.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Title: Relationships between speech perception, phonological awareness and language in the development of literacy
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/1570224
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