Segmental and suprasegmental properties in nonword repetition - An explorative study of the associations with nonword decoding in children with normal hearing and children with bilateral cochlear implants

Cecilia Nakeva Von Mentzer*, Björn Lyxell, Birgitta Sahlén, Örjan Dahlström, Magnus Lindgren, Marianne Ors, Petter Kallioinen, Elisabet Engström, Inger Uhlén

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

9 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This study explored nonword repetition (NWR) and nonword decoding in normal-hearing (NH) children and in children with bilateral cochlear implants (CI). Participants were 11 children, with CI, 5:0-7:11 years (M = 6.5 years), and 11 NH children, individually age-matched to the children with CI. This study fills an important gap in research, since it thoroughly describes detailed aspects of NWR and nonword decoding and their possible associations. All children were assessed after having practiced with a computer-assisted reading intervention with a phonics approach during four weeks. Results showed that NH children outperformed children with CI on the majority of aspects of NWR. The analysis of syllable number in NWR revealed that children with CI made more syllable omissions than did the NH children, and predominantly in prestressed positions. In addition, the consonant cluster analysis in NWR showed significantly more consonant omissions and substitutions in children with CI suggesting that reaching fine-grained levels of phonological processing was particularly difficult for these children. No significant difference was found for nonword-decoding accuracy between the groups, as measured by whole words correct and phonemes correct, but differences were observed regarding error patterns. In children with CI phoneme, deletions occurred significantly more often than in children with NH. The correlation analysis revealed that the ability to repeat consonant clusters in NWR had the strongest associations to nonword decoding in both groups. The absence of as frequent significant associations between NWR and nonword decoding in children with CI compared to children with NH suggest that these children partly use other decoding strategies to compensate for less precise phonological knowledge, for example, lexicalizations in nonword decoding, specifically, making a real word of a nonword.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)216-235
Number of pages20
JournalClinical Linguistics and Phonetics
Volume29
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2015
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • children
  • cochlear implants
  • nonword decoding
  • nonword repetition
  • normal hearing

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