The Relationship Between Speech, Language, and Phonological Awareness in Preschool-Age Children With Developmental Disabilities Purpose A number of intrinsic factors, including expressive speech skills, have been suggested to place children with developmental disabilities at risk for limited development of reading skills. This study examines the relationship between these factors, speech ability, and children's phonological awareness skills. Method A nonexperimental study design was ... Research Article
Research Article  |   May 03, 2018
The Relationship Between Speech, Language, and Phonological Awareness in Preschool-Age Children With Developmental Disabilities
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Andrea Barton-Hulsey
    Department of Psychology, Georgia State University, Atlanta
  • Rose A. Sevcik
    Department of Psychology, Georgia State University, Atlanta
  • MaryAnn Romski
    Department of Communication, Georgia State University, Atlanta
  • Disclosure: The authors have declared that no competing interests existed at the time of publication.
    Disclosure: The authors have declared that no competing interests existed at the time of publication. ×
  • Correspondence to Andrea Barton-Hulsey, who is now at the Waisman Center, University of Wisconsin-Madison: andreabarton@waisman.wisc.edu
  • Editor-in-Chief: Krista Wilkinson
    Editor-in-Chief: Krista Wilkinson×
  • Editor: Cynthia Cress
    Editor: Cynthia Cress×
Article Information
Development / Speech, Voice & Prosodic Disorders / Special Populations / Speech, Voice & Prosody / Research Articles
Research Article   |   May 03, 2018
The Relationship Between Speech, Language, and Phonological Awareness in Preschool-Age Children With Developmental Disabilities
American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, May 2018, Vol. 27, 616-632. doi:10.1044/2017_AJSLP-17-0066
History: Received May 17, 2017 , Revised September 5, 2017 , Accepted October 17, 2017
 
American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, May 2018, Vol. 27, 616-632. doi:10.1044/2017_AJSLP-17-0066
History: Received May 17, 2017; Revised September 5, 2017; Accepted October 17, 2017
Web of Science® Times Cited: 1

Purpose A number of intrinsic factors, including expressive speech skills, have been suggested to place children with developmental disabilities at risk for limited development of reading skills. This study examines the relationship between these factors, speech ability, and children's phonological awareness skills.

Method A nonexperimental study design was used to examine the relationship between intrinsic skills of speech, language, print, and letter–sound knowledge to phonological awareness in 42 children with developmental disabilities between the ages of 48 and 69 months. Hierarchical multiple regression was done to determine if speech ability accounted for a unique amount of variance in phonological awareness skill beyond what would be expected by developmental skills inclusive of receptive language and print and letter–sound knowledge.

Results A range of skill in all areas of direct assessment was found. Children with limited speech were found to have emerging skills in print knowledge, letter–sound knowledge, and phonological awareness. Speech ability did not predict a significant amount of variance in phonological awareness beyond what would be expected by developmental skills of receptive language and print and letter–sound knowledge.

Conclusion Children with limited speech ability were found to have receptive language and letter–sound knowledge that supported the development of phonological awareness skills. This study provides implications for practitioners and researchers concerning the factors related to early reading development in children with limited speech ability and developmental disabilities.

Acknowledgments
This research was supported in part by an American Speech-Language-Hearing Association New Century Scholars Doctoral Scholarship, which was awarded to Andrea Barton-Hulsey; a Dissertation Grant from the University Research Services and Administration, Georgia State University, which was also awarded to Andrea Barton-Hulsey; and the Research on the Challenges to Acquiring Language and Literacy Initiative at Georgia State University. Preparation of this article was supported by the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health & Human Development of the National Institutes of Health (T32HD007489 and U54 HD090256).
This article is based on data collected for a dissertation by Andrea Barton-Hulsey as part of the requirements for the PhD degree in Developmental Psychology at Georgia State University. The authors would like to thank the families, teachers, and children who made this research possible.
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