Building vocabulary knowledge and phonological awareness skills in children with specific language impairment through hybrid language intervention: a feasibility study.Int J Lang Commun Disord. 2008 Nov-Dec; 43(6):662-82.IJ
BACKGROUND & AIMS
Preschool and early school-aged children with specific language impairment not only have spoken language difficulties, but also are at risk of future literacy problems. Effective interventions targeting both spoken language and emergent literacy skills for this population are limited. This paper reports a feasibility study of a hybrid language intervention approach that targets vocabulary knowledge and phonological awareness skills within the context of oral narrative, storybook reading, and drill-based games. This study also reports on two novel, experimental assessments that were developed to expand options for measuring changes in lexical skills in children.
METHODS & PROCEDURES
Seventeen children with specific language impairment participated in a pilot within-group evaluation of a hybrid intervention programme. The children's performance at pre- and post-intervention was compared on a range of clinical and experimental assessment measures targeting both spoken language and phonological awareness skills. Each child received intervention for six one-hour sessions scheduled on a weekly basis. Intervention sessions focused on training phonological awareness skills as well as lexical-semantic features of words within the context of oral and storybook narrative and drill-based games.
OUTCOMES & RESULTS
The children significantly improved on clinical measures of phonological awareness, spoken vocabulary and oral narrative. Lexical-semantic and sublexical vocabulary knowledge also significantly improved on the experimental measures used in the study.
The results of this feasibility study suggest that a larger scale experimental trial of an integrated spoken language and emergent literacy intervention approach for preschool and early school-aged children with specific language impairment is warranted.