Cohesive Adequacy in the Narrative Samples of School-Age Children Who Use African American English Purpose This study explored the type and adequacy of cohesive devices that are produced by school-age children who use African American English (AAE). Method The language samples of 33 African American children, ages 7, 9, and 11 years, were transcribed, analyzed, and coded for AAE use and cohesive ... Research Article
Research Article  |   October 01, 2009
Cohesive Adequacy in the Narrative Samples of School-Age Children Who Use African American English
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • RaMonda Horton-Ikard
    Florida State University, Tallahassee
  • Contact author: RaMonda Horton-Ikard, Florida State University, Department of Communication Disorders, 401 Regional Rehabilitation Center, Tallahassee, FL 32306. E-mail: RaMonda.Horton-Ikard@comm.fsu.edu.
Article Information
Cultural & Linguistic Diversity / Research Articles
Research Article   |   October 01, 2009
Cohesive Adequacy in the Narrative Samples of School-Age Children Who Use African American English
Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools, October 2009, Vol. 40, 393-402. doi:10.1044/0161-1461(2009/07-0070)
History: Received September 1, 2007 , Revised January 7, 2008 , Accepted November 19, 2008
 
Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools, October 2009, Vol. 40, 393-402. doi:10.1044/0161-1461(2009/07-0070)
History: Received September 1, 2007; Revised January 7, 2008; Accepted November 19, 2008
Web of Science® Times Cited: 10

Purpose This study explored the type and adequacy of cohesive devices that are produced by school-age children who use African American English (AAE).

Method The language samples of 33 African American children, ages 7, 9, and 11 years, were transcribed, analyzed, and coded for AAE use and cohesive adequacy (e.g., personal reference, demonstrative reference, lexical, and conjunctive markers).

Results There were 2 AAE features that child speakers used for cohesive purposes. Adequacy rates for personal reference cohesive devices were higher than for the other 3 categories. Age was a significant factor in the use and adequacy of cohesive devices.

Conclusion Typically developing African American children use the same category types of cohesive devices that have been reported for their peers who speak Standard American English. Further examination of cohesive adequacy to identify language impairment in school-age AAE speakers is warranted.

ACKNOWLEDGMENT
The author extends thanks to Jon F. Miller and the Language Sample Analysis II IDEA Project funded by the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction.
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