The interaction between lexicon and phonology - Evidence from an early intervention study

Publikation: Konferencebidrag uden forlag/tidsskriftPosterForskningpeer review


Children tend to learn first words beginning with consonants already in their inventory, a phenomenon known as lexical selectivity (Stoel-Gammon 2011). This is true for both children with and without cleft palate (CP) (Estrem and Broen 1998; Chapman and Hardin-Jones 2013; Willadsen 2013). Furthermore, there is a significant relationship between size of vocabulary and size of consonant inventory in both children with and without CP, meaning that children with small productive vocabularies also have limited phonological systems (Stoel-Gammon 1991; Willadsen 2013). For children with CP, there is some evidence to suggest that as a group, these children have slower lexical growth, compared to their peers without CP. It is speculated that this may be due to phonological constraints (Hardin-Jones and Chapman 2013). For young children with cleft palate presenting with small vocabularies and restricted consonant inventories, early intervention is warranted to avoid a cumulative effect of a delay and related socioemotional problems. Hybrid early intervention approaches can target new words with initial consonants outside a child’s inventory, thereby targeting vocabulary and consonant inventory simultaneously. Results from previous studies of early intervention in children with CP younger than three years indicated positive effect on both domains (Broen et al. 1993; Scherer 1999; Scherer et al. 2008) however; none of these studies included a control group of children with CP. The purpose of the present study is to investigate whether parent-implemented early intervention using a focused stimulation approach has an effect on reported and observed vocabulary size and size of initial target consonant inventory in a group of young children with CP in the early stages of word acquisition as compared to a control group. Method: 20 children with repaired CP (+/- cleft lip) aged 16-22 months participating in a larger intervention study were selected for the present study. Selection was based on reported vocabulary size (<50 words) and reported vocabulary size for age (at or below the 10thpercentile on the CDI). 10 children received parent-implemented focused stimulation while 10 children matched for age and vocabulary size did not. All children were video recorded during natural play with a parent pre intervention and after 4 months (post intervention). CDI questionnaires were also collected pre and post intervention. Inter- and intra rater reliability measures for transcription and word status will be included. Recordings are randomized for pre and post status and the main transcriber is not a part of the project. All reported and observed words will be analysed for word-initial consonants to establish initial target consonant inventories. Results: The intervention study is completed and all data is collected. Data analysis is in progress. Conclusions: Larger growth in vocabularies and target consonant inventories in the intervention group compared to the control group will indicate that parent-implemented focused stimulation can stimulate both vocabulary and phonology simultaneously. Larger growth in vocabularies alone will still suggest an effect of the intervention, but also that phonology may need to be addressed separately. On the other hand, similar growth of vocabulary and consonant inventory in both groups will suggest that parent-implemented focused stimulation does not have an effect in this population, in which case we may need to look into different intervention approaches for this population, or we might consider whether it is more appropriate to await natural development of speech and language for children with CP in this age group.
StatusUdgivet - 2017
Udgivet eksterntJa
Begivenhed13. International Congress of Cleft Lip, Palate & Related Craniofacial Anomalies - Chennai, Indien
Varighed: 8 feb. 201711 feb. 2017


Konference13. International Congress of Cleft Lip, Palate & Related Craniofacial Anomalies


Jørgensen, L. D. (2017). The interaction between lexicon and phonology - Evidence from an early intervention study. Poster session præsenteret på 13. International Congress of Cleft Lip, Palate & Related Craniofacial Anomalies, Chennai, Indien.