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dc.contributor.authorBurns, Frances A. ( )en_US
dc.contributor.authorMarks, Rachel L. ( )en_US
dc.identifier.citationBurns, F., & Marks, R. (2008, April). Identifying morphological impairment in young African American English speakers: Phase 1. Presented at the National Black Association for Speech-Language and Hearing Convention, Washington, D.C.

Purpose: Copula/auxiliary verb forms were examined for differences in the production rates between typically-developing (TD) and specific language impaired (SLI) children who spoke African American English (AAE).

Method: The narratives of TD (n=38) and SLI (n=20) children, who spoke "some" and "strong" variations (V) of AAE were examined for auxiliary/copula verb forms (is, are, am, was, were). The verbs and allomorphs were coded as present/absent, and the prephoneme for each form was identified. Proportions of present/absent forms and preceding phonemes were calculated using sample proportion statistics.

Results: No significant differences were found between TD and SLI participants for combined auxiliary/copula forms for any preceding phonemes; no difference was found between "strongV" TD and SLI" auxiliary/copula form production for any phoneme; nor for "someV" TD and SLI" auxiliary/copula form production for any consonant. Participants in the "someV-TD" and "strongV-SLI" groups outperformed the "someVSLI" group in the production of auxiliaries when there was a preceding vowel. The "someV-TD" group produced copula forms at a higher rate than the "strongV-TD and "someV-SLI" groups when there was a preceding vowel.

Conclusion: Dialect variation appears to play a role in distinguishing TD and SLI groups when the preceding phoneme is considered. Use of the preceding phoneme is thought to be influenced by the type of pronoun (i.e. first-person singular "I’m" and third-person singular neuter pronoun "it’s") that precedes the verb form. Both pronoun types are obligatory in AAE, thus typically-developing AAE speaking children are expected to produce auxiliary/copula forms when they are preceded by a vowel, at a higher rate than AAE speaking children with SLI.

dc.format.extent53 pages
dc.format.medium1 file (.pdf)
dc.sourceNational Black Association for Speech-Language and Hearing Convention, April 18, 2008, Washington, D.C., United States
dc.subjectAfrican American Englishen_US
dc.subjectSpecific language impairmenten_US
dc.subjectMorphological disordersen_US
dc.subject.classificationMedicine and Health Sciencesen_US
dc.titleIdentifying Morphological Impairment in Young African American English Speakers: Phase 1en_US
txstate.departmentCommunication Disorders



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