- Nonword repetition: the relative contributions of phonological short-term memory and phonological representations in children with language and hearing impairment
- Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research
- Volume | Issue number
- 55 | 3
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Humanities (FGw)
- Amsterdam Center for Language and Communication (ACLC)
Purpose: This study investigates the relative contributions of phonological short-term memory and phonological representations to nonword repetition (NWR). This was evaluated in children with specific language impairment (SLI) and/or reading impairment (RI); it was also studied from a developmental perspective by comparing 2 groups of typically developing (TD) children who differed in age.
Method: NWR, digit span, vocabulary, and word and nonword discrimination were tested in 2 groups of TD children: one group matched on chronological age (CA TD group: n = 41, mean age = 7;8 [months;years]), and one language age-matched control group (LA TD group: n = 16, mean age = 5;8). Also, 10 children with SLI, 14 children with RI, and 23 children with SLI and RI (hereafter, SLI + RI) participated and were matched to the age of the CA TD group.
Results: For the TD children, NWR was predicted by discrimination, digit span, and age. The interaction between discrimination ability and age was also significant. Children with SLI + RI were significantly impaired on NWR compared with all other groups. A regression analysis, including the CA TD group and the children with SLI and/or RI, showed that digit span, discrimination ability, and group (SLI + RI) contributed significantly to NWR.
Conclusions: Phonological short-term memory and phonological representations both significantly contribute to NWR. The predictive strength of the quality of phonological representations changes during development.
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