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Phonological development and speech intelligibility in preschool children

Vlatka Kolar (2017) Phonological development and speech intelligibility in preschool children. MSc thesis.

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    Children start to develop phonological system from their birth. In preeschool period there are possible deviations in phonological system. In my master’s thesis, I will research the frequency of phonological processes which occur in preschool children with speech and language disorders. Our goal of this thesis was to find out what phonological processes occur in children with speech and language disorders and how they impact speech intelligibility. This thesis will include reviews from parents and teachers in kindergarten so that we could compare them with my results I got from phonological tests. I am also interested in whether there is a difference in comprehension of a child depending on how good person knows the child and what those phonological processes are that minimize speech intelligibility. Children participating in the study were aged between 4.6 and 7 years of age and they are included in preschool programme with additional expert assistance. Within the framework of the international project “Cross-linguistic study of protracted phonological (speech) and development of children”, I interviewed five children in central Slovenia: a girl and four boys and made a speech transcript of each interview. Given the difficulty of speech and language disorders, children participated in the study are a child with multiple disabilities (moderate speech-language disorder), two children with moderate speech and language disorder, a child with mild speech and language disorder and a girl suffering from hard loss of hearing.Two children are bilingual: that also affects the intelligibility of speech and the other two have had frequent ear infections. In order to determine what the actual speech intelligibility is, we acquired information fromthe parents and the teachers of these children. We handed them the questionnaire ICS – Intelligibility in Context Scale. The results obtained in a transcript of speech were compared with the results of the teachers and the parents, and that is how we acquired information on speech intelligibility. I also analyzed which phonological disorders have the greatest impact on speech intelligibility. The results show that more phonological processes occur in children with mild speech and language disorder and in two children with moderate speech and language disorder, but not in children with multiple disabilities and children with a hearing loss where we would expect more phonological processes due to the difficult diagnosis. More phonological processes occur in the processes of the system, namely: sliding, palatalization of affricates, palatalization of fricatives, vocal changes, anteriorization of fricatives and then some processes in structure: omission of consonants in consonant structure and epenthesis. The results of the teachers and parents were generally similar. We can conclude that phonological processes and other development factors reduce intelligibility. If there are a lot of phonological processes in speech, the speech intelligibility is lower.

    Item Type: Thesis (MSc thesis)
    Keywords: delayed phonological development, speech and language disorders, speech intelligibility, phonological processes, preschool children
    Number of Pages: 182
    Language of Content: Slovenian
    Mentor / Comentors:
    Mentor / ComentorsIDFunction
    doc. dr. Martina OzbičMentor
    Link to COBISS: http://www.cobiss.si/scripts/cobiss?command=search&base=50126&select=(ID=11764809)
    Institution: University of Ljubljana
    Department: Faculty of Education
    Item ID: 4828
    Date Deposited: 09 Oct 2017 13:28
    Last Modified: 09 Oct 2017 13:28
    URI: http://pefprints.pef.uni-lj.si/id/eprint/4828

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