specific language impairment; sentence repetition; sensibility; specificity; construct validity; diagnosis
[en] This study assesses the diagnostic accuracy and construct validity of a sentence repetition task that is commonly used for the identification of French children with specific language impairment (SLI). Thirty-four school-aged children with a confirmed, diagnostically based diagnosis of SLI, and 34 control children matched on age and nonverbal abilities performed the sentence repetition task. Two general scoring measures took into account the verbatim repetition of the sentence and the number of words accurately repeated. Moreover, five other scoring measures were applied to their answers in order to separately take into account their respect of lexical items, functional items, syntax, verb morphology, and the general meaning of the sentence. Results show good to high levels of sensitivity and specificity at the three cut-off points for all scoring measures. A principal component analysis revealed two factors. Scoring measures for the respect of functional words, syntax and verb morphology provided the largest loadings to the first factor, while scoring measures for the respect of lexical words and general semantics provided the largest loadings to the second factor. Sentence repetition appears to be a valuable tool to identify SLI in French children, and the ability to repeat sentences correctly is supported by two factors: a morphosyntactic factor and a lexical factor.
Theoretical & cognitive psychology
Author, co-author :
Leclercq, Anne-Lise ; Université de Liège - ULiège > Département de Psychologie : cognition et comportement > Logopédie clinique
Quémart, Pauline; Universite de Poitiers France
Magis, David ; Université de Liège - ULiège > Département Education et formation > Département Education et formation
Maillart, Christelle ; Université de Liège - ULiège > Département de Psychologie : cognition et comportement > Logopédie clinique
The sentence repetition task: A powerful diagnostic tool for French children with specific language impairment
Alternative titles :
[fr] La répétition de phrases : Un outil diagnostique puissant pour les enfants dysphasiques francophones
Allen R.J., Baddeley A.D. Working memory and sentence recall. Interactions between short-term and long-term memory in the verbal domain 2009, 63-85. Psychology Press, New York, NY.
Archibald L.M., Joanisse M.F. On the sensitivity and specificity of nonword repetition and sentence recall to language and memory impairments in children. Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research 2009, 52(4):899-914.
Briscoe J., Bishop D.V., Norbury C.F. Phonological processing, language, and literacy: A comparison of children with mild-to-moderate sensorineural hearing loss and those with specific language impairment. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry 2001, 42(3):329-340.
Chevrie-Muller C., Maillart C., Simon A.-M., Fournier S. Batterie langage oral, langage écrit, mémoire, attention 2010, ECPA, Montreuil. 2nd ed.
Chevrie-Muller C., Plaza M. Nouvelles épreuves pour l'examen du langage 2001, ECPA, Montreuil.
Christensen R.V., Hansson K. The use and productivity of past tense morphology in specific language impairment: An examination of Danish. Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research 2012, 55(6):1671-1689.
Conti-Ramsden G. Processing and linguistic markers in young children with specific language impairment (SLI). Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research 2003, 46:1029-1037.
Conti-Ramsden G., Botting N., Faragher B. Psycholinguistic markers for specific language impairment (SLI). Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry 2001, 42(6):741-748.
Devescovi A., Caselli M.C. Sentence repetition as a measure of early grammatical development in Italian. International Journal of Language & Communication Disorders 2007, 42:187-208.
Donaldson M.L., Reid J., Murray C. Causal sentence production in children with language impairments. International Journal of Language & Communication Disorders 2007, 42(2):155-186.
Dunn L., Thériault-Whalen C., Dunn L. Échelle de Vocabulaire en Images Peabody 1993, Psycan, Toronto.
Franck J., Crolen-Ohayon S., Chillier L., Frauenfelder U., Hamann C., Rizzi L., et al. Normal and pathological development of subject-verb agreement in speech production: A study of French children. Journal of Neurolinguistics 2004, 17:147-180.
Grela B., Rashiti L., Soares M. Dative prepositions in children with specific language impairment. Applied Psycholinguistics 2004, 25:467-480.
Hamann C., Ohayon S., Dube S., Frauenfelder U.H., Rizzi L., Starke M., et al. Aspects of grammatical development in young French children with SLI. Developmental Science 2003, 6(2):151-158.
Hastie T., Tibshirani R., Friedman J. The elements of statistical learning: Data mining, inference, and prediction 2009, Springer, New York.
Jakubowicz C., Nash L., Rigaut C., Gerard C.-L. Determiners and clitic pronouns in French-speaking children with SLI. Language Acquisition: A Journal of Developmental Linguistics 1998, 7(2-4):113-160.
Jefferies E., Lambon Ralph M.A., Baddeley A.D. Automatic and controlled processing in sentence recall: The role of long-term and working memory. Journal of Memory and Language 2004, 51(4):623-643.
Khomsi A. Evaluation du langage oral (ELO) 2001, ECPA, Paris.
Komeili M., Marshall C.R. Sentence repetition as a measure of morphosyntax in monolingual and bilingual children. Clinical Linguistics & Phonetics 2013, 27(2):152-161.
Leonard L.B., Weismer S.E., Miller C.A., Francis D.J., Tomblin J., Kail R.V. Speed of processing, working memory, and language impairment in children. Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research 2007, 50(2):408-428.
McGregor K., Oleson J., Bahnsen A., DuffD. Children with developmental language impairment have vocabulary deficits characterized by limited breadth and depth. International Journal of Language & Communication Disorders 2013, 48:307-319.
Novogrodsky R., Friedmann N. The production of relative clauses in syntactic SLI: A window to the nature of the impairment. Advances in Speech Language Pathology 2006, 8(4):364-375.
Oetting J.B., McDonald J.L. Nonmainstream dialect use and specific language impairment. Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research 2001, 44:207-223.
Paradis J., Crago M. The morphosyntax of specific language impairment in French: An extended optional default account. Language Acquisition: A Journal of Developmental Linguistics 2001, 9(4):269-300.
Petruccelli N., Bavin E.L., Bretherton L. Children with specific language impairment and resolved late talkers: Working memory profiles at 5 years. Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research 2012, 55(6):1690-1703.
Pizzioli F., Schelstraete M.-A. The argument-structure complexity effect in children with specific language impairment: Evidence from the use of grammatical morphemes in French. Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research 2008, 51(3):706-721.
Poll G., Betz S., Miller C.A. Identification of clinical markers of specific language impairment in adults. Journal of Speech, Language and Hearing Research 2010, 53:414-429.
Redmond S.M. Differentiating SLI from ADHD using children's sentence recall and production of past tense morphology. Clinical Linguistics & Phonetics 2005, 19(2):109-127.
Redmond S.M., Thompson H.L., Goldstein S. Psycholinguistic profiling differentiates specific language impairment from typical development and from attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research 2011, 54(1):99-117.
Rice M., Wexler K. Toward tense as a clinical marker of specific language impairment in English-speaking children. Journal of Speech and Hearing Research 1996, 39(6):1239-1257.
Riches N., Loucas T., Baird G., Charman T., SimonoffE. Research report: Sentence repetition in adolescents with specific language impairments and autism: An investigation of complex syntax. International Journal of Language & Communication Disorders 2010, 45(1):47-60.
Schuele C., Dykes J.C. Complex syntax acquisition: A longitudinal case study of a child with specific language impairment. Clinical Linguistics & Phonetics 2005, 19(4):295-318.
Stokes S.F., Wong A.M., Fletcher P., Leonard L.B. Nonword repetition and sentence repetition as clinical markers of specific language impairment: The case of Cantonese. Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research 2006, 49(2):219-236.
Taylor L.J., Maybery M.T., Grayndler L., Whitehouse A.J. Evidence for distinct cognitive profiles in autism spectrum disorders and specific language impairment. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders 2014, 44:19-30.
Thordardottir E., Brandeker M. The effect of bilingual exposure versus language impairment on nonword repetition and sentence imitation scores. Journal of Communication Disorders 2013, 46:1-16.
Thordardottir E., Kehayia E., Mazer B., Lessard N., Majnemer A., Sutton A., et al. Sensitivity and specificity of French language and processing measures for the identification of primary language impairment at age 5. Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research 2011, 54(2):580-597.
Wechsler D. Wechsler Intelligence Scale for children 2005, ECPA, Paris. 4th ed.