The Continuing Relevance of Cause A Reply to Leonard’s "Specific Language Impairment as a Clinical Category" Clinical Forum
Clinical Forum  |   April 01, 1991
The Continuing Relevance of Cause
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Judith R. Johnston, Ph.D.
    University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada
  • Requests for reprints may be sent to Judith R. Johnston, Ph.D., Department of Audiology and Speech Sciences, University of British Columbia, 5804 Fairview Ave., Vancouver, BC Canada V6T 1W5.
Article Information
Development / Language Disorders / Specific Language Impairment / Attention, Memory & Executive Functions / Clinical Forum: Specific Language Impairment as a Clinical Category
Clinical Forum   |   April 01, 1991
The Continuing Relevance of Cause
Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools, April 1991, Vol. 22, 75-79. doi:10.1044/0161-1461.2202.75
History: Received April 9, 1990 , Accepted July 9, 1990
 
Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools, April 1991, Vol. 22, 75-79. doi:10.1044/0161-1461.2202.75
History: Received April 9, 1990; Accepted July 9, 1990

Leonard proposes that many language-impaired children simply represent the low end of the normal distribution of language ability, and further, that this fact has significant research implications. His proposal does not eliminate neuropathology as one possible primary cause of language impairment, nor does it deny the reality of physical differences between children who do and do not learn language easily. Given current trends in population definition, Leonard’s vision of the normal, language-impaired child, seems plausible. Such children may not welcome etiologically oriented research, but they still invite questions about proximal causal mechanisms. Continued research into such causes should illuminate both the nature of the impairment and the nature of language learning.

Order a Subscription
Pay Per View
Entire Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools content & archive
24-hour access
This Article
24-hour access