Date of Publication


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (M.S.) in Speech Communication


Speech Communication




Speech, Listening, Comprehension, Speech disorders in children



Physical Description

1 online resource (55 p.)


The purpose of this investigation was to determine if performance on a language comprehension task, varying in number of syntactical units (i.e., grammatical complexity) was affected by altered rates of speech. A total of twenty-four language disordered children, aged 7 years, 8 months, through 9 years, 8 months, who were enrolled in language/learning disorders classrooms in the Portland Public Schools served as subjects. The Assessment of Children’s Language Comprehension (Foster et al., 1972) test was administered to each subject via audio-tape at one expanded (100 wpm), one normal (150 wpm), and two compressed rates (200, 250 wpm) of speech.

The results of this investigation showed significant differences between performances at varying rates of speech. The normal speaking rate produced significantly better comprehension scores than the other rates. The fast speaking rate (200 wpm) produced the next best scores, while the slow speaking rate (100 wpm) produced significantly lower scores.

The results also indicated a normal speaking rate appears to be the best overall rate to use among language disordered subjects, regardless of grammatical complexity.


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A thesis submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Science in Speech Communication: Emphasis in Speech Pathology/Audiology

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