Article  |   January 2007
Characteristics of Speech Errors Produced by Children With and Without Delayed Phonological Awareness Skills
 
Author Notes
  • Contact author: Dr. Susan Rvachew, Communication Sciences and Disorders, McGill University, 1266 Pine Avenue West, Montréal, Québec, Canada, H3G 1A8. E-mail: susan.rvachew@mcgill.ca
Article Information
Development / Speech, Voice & Prosody
Article   |   January 2007
Characteristics of Speech Errors Produced by Children With and Without Delayed Phonological Awareness Skills
Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools, January 2007, Vol. 38, 60-71. doi:10.1044/0161-1461(2007/006)
History: Received August 3, 2005 , Revised January 2, 2006 , Accepted July 5, 2006
 
Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools, January 2007, Vol. 38, 60-71. doi:10.1044/0161-1461(2007/006)
History: Received August 3, 2005; Revised January 2, 2006; Accepted July 5, 2006
Web of Science® Times Cited: 12

Purpose: The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between the types of speech errors that are produced by children with speech-sound disorders and the children’s phonological awareness skills during their prekindergarten and kindergarten years.

Method: Fifty-eight children with speech-sound disorders were assessed during the spring of their prekindergarten year and then again at the end of their kindergarten year. The children’s responses on the Goldman–Fristoe Test of Articulation (R. Goldman & M. Fristoe, 2000) were described in terms of match ratios for the features of each target sound and the type of error produced. Match ratios and error type frequencies were then examined as a function of the child’s performance on a test of phonological awareness.

Results: Lower match ratios for +distributed and higher frequencies of typical syllable structure errors and atypical segment errors were associated with poorer phonological awareness test performance. However, no aspect of the children’s error patterns proved to be a reliable indicator of which individual child would pass or fail the test. The best predictor of test performance at the end of the kindergarten year was test performance 1 year earlier. Children who achieved age-appropriate articulation skills by the end of kindergarten also achieved age-appropriate phonological awareness skills.

Conclusion: Children who enter kindergarten with delayed articulation skills should be monitored to ensure age-appropriate acquisition of phonological awareness and literacy skills.

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
This research was supported by a research grant from the Canadian Language and Literacy Research Network. We are grateful to the families who participated in this research and to the students who were involved in the collection and transcription of the speech samples, including Genevieve Cloutier, Myra Cox, Meghann Grawburg, Joan Heyding, Debbie Hughes, Alyssa Ohberg, Alysha Serviss, and Rishanthi Sivakumaran. We also thank the SLPs at the Alberta Children’s Hospital and the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario for their assistance with the recruitment of children.
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