Research in Brief: Prematurity May Affect Language Skills, Standardized Test Scores Differently In the absence of neurological impairment, children born prematurely may have relatively intact and sophisticated semantic and syntactic skills in conversational speech but still perform poorly on standardized tests, according to a Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research article published Oct. 1. The results suggest that children born ... Research in Brief
Free
Research in Brief  |   February 01, 2014
Research in Brief: Prematurity May Affect Language Skills, Standardized Test Scores Differently
Author Notes
Article Information
Development / Attention, Memory & Executive Functions / Research in Brief
Research in Brief   |   February 01, 2014
Research in Brief: Prematurity May Affect Language Skills, Standardized Test Scores Differently
The ASHA Leader, February 2014, Vol. 19, online only. doi:10.1044/leader.RIB6.19022014.np
The ASHA Leader, February 2014, Vol. 19, online only. doi:10.1044/leader.RIB6.19022014.np
In the absence of neurological impairment, children born prematurely may have relatively intact and sophisticated semantic and syntactic skills in conversational speech but still perform poorly on standardized tests, according to a Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research article published Oct. 1. The results suggest that children born prematurely with no frank neurological impairment will generally be indistinguishable from their full-term peers in conversation and storytelling by the time they reach school age.
Researchers led by Jamie Mahurin Smith at Illinois State University compared 57 children born prematurely at 32 weeks or at less than 1,500 grams—to 57 full-term children matched for age, gender, race and parental education. Data included discourse-level language samples and standardized test results, which the authors collected at average ages 7, 8 and 10. They analyzed the language samples to yield semantic and syntactic measures that were consolidated via factor analysis (a statistical method used to describe variability).
Regression models showed that children born prematurely performed poorer on standardized tests than full-term children, although the mean score for both groups fell in the normal range. Parents' level of education was significantly associated with improved standardized test scores. For the discourse-level language measures, however, differences never reached statistical significance. From a clinical perspective, these findings suggest that children born prematurely are likely to benefit from multifaceted evaluation strategies that incorporate other tasks besides standardized instruments. For children born prematurely, school success may be more readily attainable when schools and teachers emphasize a broad-based approach to evaluation over scores on standardized measures.
0 Comments
Submit a Comment
Submit A Comment
Name
Comment Title
Comment


This feature is available to Subscribers Only
Sign In or Create an Account ×
FROM THIS ISSUE
February 2014
Volume 19, Issue 2