CSD 367 Ch. 1

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language disorder
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an impairment in comprehension and/or use of a spoken, written, and/or other symbol system May involve (1) the form of language (phonology, morphology and syntax), (2) the content of language (semantics), and/or (3) the function of language in communication (pragmatics) in any combination.
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naturalist perspective
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impairment is characterized as a deviation from the average level of ability achieved by a similar group of people; doesn’t help the clinician decide what differences in language behavior constitute an impairment or at what level of impairment intervention is warranted
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normative perspective
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look at the impact of the language impairment on the child’s overall development and ability to function in everyday situations; takes in society’s values and expectations concerning individual behavior
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what is an example of naturalist and normative criterion as it would be used to identify a child with a language disorder?
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naturalist: how far behind does a child’s language need to be to warrant intervention? normative: does the language disorder interfere with the child’s ability to meet societal expectations now or in the future?
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why are both the naturalist and normative criterion necessary to make a diagnosis?
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explain the differences between speech, language, and communication. how are they related and why are they not always used together
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expressive, poor understanding, odd tangential speech, repetitive, etc. a child can have bad speech, but good language and comm or good language, but bad speech and comm, or good language and speech and bad comm impairments in one area may or may not affect the other areas.
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how do we decide which term to use?
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highlight the child’s most salient difficulty
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developmental language disorder (DLD)
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used to describe children who are not acquiring language as would be expected for their chronological age, for whatever reason.
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primary DLD
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Language impaired No other diagnostic label is appropriate
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language-learning disorders
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children of school age with primary DLDs that co-exist with literacy disorders
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secondary DLD
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children with DLDs that are associated with or secondary to some other developmental disorder such as ASK or intellectual impairment (ID)
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what is the primary hallmark of DLD?
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deficits in grammar
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describe children with DLD
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have a developmental level that is significantly lower than their chronological age
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comorbidity
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a situation in which a child may experience two or more disorders simultaneously
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foxp2
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a supposed “gene for language” that is more of a “CEO” regulating the behavior of other genes
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what field of study gave rise to the study of DLD?
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neurology
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why was the development of theoretical linguistics important for our field?
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how does the history of DLD tie in with issues of terminology?
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we struggle to label a child’s impairments when they are not associated with a more pervasive disorder. could be because there are many names for DLD (SLI, language delay, disability, disorder) and the terms have changed considerably while diagnostic terms have remained stable
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if a child has a deficit in form, what would their conversation look like?
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OMIT morphosyntactic markers of grammatical tense in spontaneous speech where those morphemes are obligatory (/ed, /3s, [copula be]) behave as if grammatical rules are optional
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if a child has a deficit in content, what would their conversation look like?
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impoverished vocabularies, slow to learn new words, difficulty retaining new word labels, encode fewer semantic features of newly learned items, require more exposure to novel words in order to learn them may not realize words can have more than one meaning learning out verbs may be difficult
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if a child has a deficit in use, what would their conversation look like?
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IMMATURE (not abnormal) pragmatic skills topics, clarification, turn-taking, matching communication style to the social context
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which criterion would result in identifying more children with language disorder: the 10th percentile or one standard deviation below the mean?
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one standard deviation below
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are there subtypes to dld?
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yes, but although they appear to exist throughout the school years, the children that make up those subgroups move fluidly between them over time
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what are the key components of the International Classification of Functioning, Disability, and Health? how would you use this in clinical practice?
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considers the biological impairment in body structure or function experienced by the individual and how that impairment interferes with the individual’s activity and participation in daily events and the contextual factors (social attitudes and beliefs about impairment, practical obstacles to well-being) evaluate the impact of the disorder on everyday well-being (also DSM-V and WHO)
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what are the different levels of explanation in a casual model of disorder? how do these apply to dld?
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biological (genetic risk vs neurological structure and function) cognitive (perception vs information processing) behavioral (overt differences) environmental can affect all (increase risk of disorder or are protective against biological risk)
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how do we study language in the brain?
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MRI: measurement of the volume, shape, and position of brain tissues fMRI: brain activity in response to some external stimuli; studies brain function DTI: anatomical connectivity fTCD: cerebral lateralization NIRS: amount and oxygen content of hemoglobin EEG: measure electrical brain activity that is directly related to a specific external event; auditory processing
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why are twin studies important to understanding the biological basis of dld?
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established that dld is highly heritable MZ twins more often resemble each other when it comes to dld than DZ twins
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what are some of the differences in brain structure and function associated with dld?
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hypoactivation in frontal and parietal regions that are implicated in memory and attention and the inferior frontal gyrus
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are genetic disorders impossible to treat?
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what environmental factors should we consider in dld?
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SES (maternel education, interactions)
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is dld a disorder of language or learning?
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what are the differences between top-down and bottom-up processing
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top-down: bottom-up: lower-level processes provide input necessary to the function of higher-level processes
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why is non-word repetition an important test to use in dld?
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deficits on this task are thought to index phonological short-term memory, as children with dld tend to have more difficult at increasing syllable length (acquiring new words requires retaining novel sound sequence in memory) a deficit in this could lead to a host of language deficits
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what have intervention studies revealed about the role of auditory processing in dld?
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when processing demands increase, capacity for recall is reduced; children with dld should have a harder time processing sentences of increasing length and complexity
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is there a single cognitive explanation of dld?
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describe similarities and differences between the language impairments that characterize primary dld and those that characterize ASD
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ASD: more severe, deviant features that wouldn’t be regarded as typical at any age, pragmatic skills DLD: more likely to have impairments in speech production and articulation
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what aspects of literacy development are particularly vulnerable in children with dld?
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will depend on their profile of language impairment;
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what distinguishes children with dld who can read from those who cannot?
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how do we test the mental age of children with dld?
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use cognitive tests that do not involve the production or understanding of speech, or that do so as little as possible; assess aspects of thinking and problem solving that minimize the involvement of language
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why do we use mental age instead of chronological age to decide whether a child has a language disorder?
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we wouldn’t expect a child’s language skills to be better than the general level of development (language level very rarely exceeds nonverbal cognitive level); determine what behaviors are reasonable to target in an intervention program
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standardized tests
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measure a set of skills in a large number of children drawn from the general population and set normative scores based on the average performance of these children
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endophenotypes
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genetic influences on underlying cognitive traits that affect language skills
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Broca’s area
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frontal lobe; inferior frontal gyrus speech motor planning is needed to produce spoken language
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Wernicke’s area
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temporal lobe auditory processing and language comprehension

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