Early predictors of language and social communication impairments at ages 9-11 years: A follow-up study of early-referred children

Chiat, S. & Roy, P. (2013). Early predictors of language and social communication impairments at ages 9-11 years: A follow-up study of early-referred children. Journal of Speech, Language and Hearing Research, 56, pp. 1824-1836. doi: 10.1044/1092-4388(2013/12-0249)

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Abstract

Purpose: In this study, the authors aimed to evaluate hypotheses that early sociocognition will predict later social communication and early phonology will predict later morphosyntax in clinically referred preschoolers.

Method: Participants were 108 children ages 9–11 years who had been referred to clinical services with concerns about language at age 2½–3½ years. Predictors at Time 1 (T1) were measures of sociocognition, word/nonword repetition, and receptive language. Outcome measures at Time 3 (T3) included a social communication questionnaire completed by parents and tests of nonword repetition, morphosyntax, and receptive language.

Results: Group- and case-level analyses revealed early sociocognition to be the strongest predictor of social communication problems, which by T3 affected almost one third of the sample. At the group level, early phonology, which was a significant problem for the majority of children at T1, was a weak predictor of morphosyntax at T3. However, at the case level the majority of children with poor morphosyntax and nonword repetition at outcome had had very low repetition scores at T1.

Conclusions: In early language referrals, it is important to identify and address sociocognitive problems, a considerable risk for later social communication and autism spectrum disorders. The majority of early-referred children had phonological problems, often severe, but these require further investigation to determine their longer term significance for language.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: P Language and Literature > P Philology. Linguistics
Divisions: School of Health Sciences > Department of Language & Communication Science
URI: http://openaccess.city.ac.uk/id/eprint/3353

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