Matching Items (5)

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Testing the Limits of a Reading Comprehension Intervention

Description

This study investigates whether children who are Dual Language Learners (DLLs) and who have poor reading comprehension will benefit from participating in the EMBRACE intervention. The reading comprehension program is

This study investigates whether children who are Dual Language Learners (DLLs) and who have poor reading comprehension will benefit from participating in the EMBRACE intervention. The reading comprehension program is based on the Theory of Embodied Cognition, which focuses on the embodied nature of language comprehension. Our understanding of language is based on mental representations that we create through experiences and are integrated with according sensorimotor information. Therefore, by engaging the motor and language system through reading stories on an iPad that prompt the children to manipulate images on-screen, we might improve children's reading strategies and comprehension scores. Fifty-six children participated in reading three stories and answering related questions over a period of two weeks. Results showed that the intervention was successful in increasing reading comprehension scores in the physical manipulation condition but not in the imaginary manipulation condition. Although lower motor skill scores positively correlated with lower comprehension skills, the children's motor deficits did not moderate their performance on the intervention.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2016-12

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Second language proficiency in sequential bilingual Children with and without primary language impairment

Description

Identification of primary language impairment (PLI) in sequential bilingual children is challenging because of the interaction between PLI and second language (L2) proficiency. An important step in improving the accurate

Identification of primary language impairment (PLI) in sequential bilingual children is challenging because of the interaction between PLI and second language (L2) proficiency. An important step in improving the accurate diagnosis of PLI in bilingual children is to investigate how differences in L2 performance are affected by a length of L2 exposure and how L2 assessment contributes to differentiation between children with and without PLI at different L2 proficiency levels. Sixty one children with typical language development (TD) ages 5;3-8 years and 12 children with PLI ages 5;5-7;8 years participated. Results revealed that bilingual children with and without PLI, who had between 1 and 3 years of L2 exposure, did not differ in mean length of utterance (MLU), number of different words, percent of maze words, and performance on expressive and receptive grammatical tasks in L2. Performance on a grammaticality judgment task by children with and without PLI demonstrated the largest effect size, indicating that it may potentially contribute to identification of PLI in bilingual populations. In addition, children with PLI did not demonstrate any association between the length of exposure and L2 proficiency, suggesting that they do not develop their L2 proficiency in relation to length of exposure in the same manner as children with TD. Results also indicated that comprehension of grammatical structures and expressive grammatical task in L2 may contribute to differentiation between the language ability groups at the low and intermediate-high proficiency levels. The discriminant analysis with the entire sample of bilingual children with and without PLI revealed that among L2 measures, only MLU contributed to the discrimination between the language ability groups. However, poor classification accuracy suggested that MLU alone is not a sufficient predictor of PLI. There were significant differences among L2 proficiency levels in children with TD in MLU, number of different words, and performance on the expressive and receptive grammatical tasks in L2, indicating that L2 proficiency level may potentially impact the differentiation between language difficulties due to typical L2 acquisition processes and PLI.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2012

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Dynamic assessment of narratives among Navajo Head Start children

Description

Purpose: Over-identification of Navajo Head Start children into special education on the Navajo Reservation has come to the attention of Tribal leaders, Educational leaders, and parents due to the use

Purpose: Over-identification of Navajo Head Start children into special education on the Navajo Reservation has come to the attention of Tribal leaders, Educational leaders, and parents due to the use of invalid assessment measures. Dynamic assessment (DA) of narratives may be a tool for distinguishing language differences from language disorders. The purpose of this study is to determine whether the Predictive Early Assessment of Reading and Language (PEARL), a dynamic assessment of narratives, accurately classifies Navajo Head Start students with typically developing (TD) language or with language impairment (LI), and to examine which measures best predict children’s overall performances on the PEARL.

Method: Ninety, 4- and 5-year-old Navajo preschoolers with LI and with TD language were selected. Children completed the PEARL, which measured both language comprehension and production using pretest and posttest scores, and a modifiability scale. In addition, children completed the Clinical Evaluation of Language Fundamental, Preschool, Second Edition (CELF – Preschool 2) and language samples. A Navajo Speech Language Pathologist confirmed the diagnosis of the participants. Research assistants pretested, briefly taught the principles of narrative structure (story grammar, language complexity and episode) and evaluated response to learning using an index of modifiability.

Results: Results of discriminant analysis indicated that PEARL pretest differentiated both ability groups with 89% accuracy. In addition, posttest scores discriminated with 89% accuracy and modifiability scores with 100% accuracy. Further, the subtest story grammar was the best predictor at pretest and posttest, although modifiability scores were better predictors of both ability groups.

Conclusion: Findings indicate that the PEARL is a promising assessment for accurately differentiating Navajo preschool children with LI from Navajo preschool children with TD language. The PEARL’s recommended pretest cut score over-identified Navajo children with TD language; therefore, a new recommended cut score was determined.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2017

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Predictors of performance on an iPad-based reading comprehension intervention among Spanish-speaking dual language learners at risk for reading comprehension delays

Description

Purpose: The purpose of this study was to evaluate the efficacy of the EMBRACE Spanish support intervention for at-risk dual language learners and to determine which verbal and nonverbal characteristics

Purpose: The purpose of this study was to evaluate the efficacy of the EMBRACE Spanish support intervention for at-risk dual language learners and to determine which verbal and nonverbal characteristics of students were related to benefit from the intervention. The first study examined oral language and reading characteristics and the second study examined motor characteristics in predicting the children's outcomes on a reading comprehension intervention.

Method: Fifty-six participants in 2nd-5th grade were randomly assigned to one of two groups: 1) Spanish-support intervention, or 2) Spanish-support control. Outcome measures included performance on comprehension questions related to intervention texts, questions on the final narrative and expository text without strategy instruction, and difference scores on alternate forms of the Gates-MacGinitie (GMRT-4, MacGinitie, MacGinitie, Maria, & Dreyer, 2002) reading comprehension subtest administered pre- post-intervention. Multi-level hierarchical linear models were used to account for nesting of question within child within classroom. Regression models were used to examine the power of motor predictors in predicting Spanish and English language performance.

Results: Results from study 1 indicated that the intervention was most effective for narrative (vs. expository) texts and easy (vs. more difficult) texts. Dual language learners (DLLs) with lower initial English reading comprehension abilities benefitted more from the intervention than those with stronger reading skills. Results from Study 2 indicated that oral fine motor abilities predicted Spanish (but not English) oral language abilities in the expected direction (i.e. faster performance associated with higher language scores). The speed of /pata/ productions predicted reading comprehension during the intervention, but not in the expected direction (i.e. slower speeds associated with higher accuracy). Manual fine motor performance on tapping tasks was not related to language or reading.

Conclusions: The EMBRACE intervention has promise for use with at-risk DLLs. Future research should take care to match text difficulty with child skills so as to maximize benefit from the intervention. Oral fine motor abilities were related to language abilities in DLLs, but only for the native language. Slower oral fine motor performance predicted higher accuracy on intervention questions, suggesting that EMBRACE may be particularly effective for children with weak fine motor skills.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2017

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Spanish grammatical gender knowledge in young heritage speakers

Description

Purpose: The present study examined grammatical gender use in child Spanish heritage speakers (HSs) in order to determine whether the differences observed in their grammar, when compared to Spanish monolinguals,

Purpose: The present study examined grammatical gender use in child Spanish heritage speakers (HSs) in order to determine whether the differences observed in their grammar, when compared to Spanish monolinguals, stem from an incompletely acquired grammar, in which development stops, or from a restructuring process, in which features from the dominant and the weaker language converge to form a new grammatical system. In addition, this study evaluated whether the differences usually found in comprehension are also present in production. Finally, this study evaluates if HSs differences are the result of the input available to them.

Method: One-hundred and four typically developing children, 48 HSs and 58 monolingual, were selected based on two age groups (Preschool vs. 3rd Grade). Two comprehension and three production experimental tasks were designed for the three different grammatical structures where Spanish expresses gender (determiners, adjectives, and clitic pronouns). Linear mixed-models were used to examine main effects between groups and grammatical structures.

Results: Results from this study showed that HSs scored significantly lower than monolingual speakers in all tasks and structures; however, 3rd-Grade HSs had higher accuracy than PK-HSs. Error patterns were similar between monolinguals and HSs. Moreover, the commonly reported overgeneralization of the masculine form seems to decrease as HSs get older.

Conclusion: These results suggest that HSs’ do not face a case of Incomplete Acquisition or Restructured Grammatical gender system, but instead follow a protracted language development in which grammatical skills continue to develop after preschool years and follow the same developmental patterns as monolingual children

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2018