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Purpose Preschoolers born preterm are at an increased risk for the development of language impairments. The primary objective of this study was to document the expressive language skills of preschoolers born preterm through 2 assessment procedures, language sample analysis, and standardized assessment. A secondary objective was to investigate the role of nonlinguistic factors in standardized assessment scores. Method The language skills of 29 children born preterm (mean gestational age of 31 weeks) were compared to a group of 29 preschoolers born full term. Language samples were collected during free play and objective measures of semantic and grammatical skills were calculated. Likewise, grammatical and semantic measures of language were obtained from a standardized assessment. Information on nonlinguistic factors, including attention, hyperactivity, and nonverbal intelligence quotient, was also collected. Results The results of analyses of variance indicated that the children in the PT group had significantly poorer performance than the children born full term on all of the measures of language skill obtained from the language sample analysis. Group differences were found for only 1 measure of language skill obtained from the standardized assessments. Nonverbal factors were not found to account for group differences in assessment scores. Conclusions Generally, the children born preterm performed more poorly when language skill was measured via language sample analysis than standardized assessment. These findings underscore the importance of using language sample analysis in conjunction with standardized assessment in the evaluation of children's developing language skills.
This article was published in the following journal.
Name: Journal of speech, language, and hearing research : JSLHR
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Tests designed to assess language behavior and abilities. They include tests of vocabulary, comprehension, grammar and functional use of language, e.g., Development Sentence Scoring, Receptive-Expressive Emergent Language Scale, Parsons Language Sample, Utah Test of Language Development, Michigan Language Inventory and Verbal Language Development Scale, Illinois Test of Psycholinguistic Abilities, Northwestern Syntax Screening Test, Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test, Ammons Full-Range Picture Vocabulary Test, and Assessment of Children's Language Comprehension.
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Rehabilitation of persons with language disorders or training of children with language development disorders.
The absence of certain expected and acceptable cultural phenomena in the environment which results in the failure of the individual to communicate and respond in the most appropriate manner within the context of society. Language acquisition and language use are commonly used in assessing this concept.
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