Auditory Perceptual Impairments in Children with Specific Language Disorders A Review of the Literature Articles
Articles  |   February 01, 1981
Auditory Perceptual Impairments in Children with Specific Language Disorders
 
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Article Information
Articles   |   February 01, 1981
Auditory Perceptual Impairments in Children with Specific Language Disorders
Journal of Speech and Hearing Disorders, February 1981, Vol. 46, 3-9. doi:10.1044/jshd.4601.03
History: Received July 10, 1979 , Accepted March 3, 1980
 
Journal of Speech and Hearing Disorders, February 1981, Vol. 46, 3-9. doi:10.1044/jshd.4601.03
History: Received July 10, 1979; Accepted March 3, 1980

This article reviews the literature on auditory perceptual impairments in children with language disorders. It is suggested that, rather than a higher-order cognitive or "linguistic" deficit, the underlying deficit in childhood language disorders is a perceptual one. The perceptual impairment may consist of a deficiency in detecting acoustic features in the speech wave that normally cue certain phonemes. Support for this hypothesis comes from clinical observations and experimental studies of aphasic adults as well as language-disordered children. The most consistent finding of the studies with language-disordered children has been that they have difficulty making perceptual judgments of the order of rapid sequences of brief sounds, such as synthetic speech and non-speech stimuli. However, these children perceive the sequences more accurately if the duration of the stimuli or the inter-stimulus intervals are extended. This suggests a "rate-specific" auditory perceptual deficit in language-disordered children for rapid acoustic information, such as the distinctive acoustic features of speech sounds. Treatment and future research implications are discussed.

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