First Advisor

Rhea Paul

Date of Publication


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (M.S.) in Speech with Emphasis in Speech Pathology


Speech Communication


Children with disabilities -- Language, Preschool children -- Language, Vocabulary



Physical Description

1 online resource (78 p.)


Children with severe physical disabilities often do not have the capabilities for oral communication. Professionals are frequently faced with selecting vocabulary for children who are unable to use vocal output because of severe motor impairments. A child who is nonambulatory may have additional reasons for communicating and sees the world from a different viewpoint than his ambulatory peers. Selecting appropriate words for an initial lexicon that are useful to nonspeaking disabled children that also meet normal language acquisition standards is a concern. This study specifically addresses this concern by looking at the vocabulary differences of ambulatory and nonambulatory preschool children. The purpose of this research project was to compare expressive vocabulary produced by nonambulatory, speaking children with the expressive vocabulary produced by ambulatory, speaking children. It is suggested that the vocabulary of nonambulatory, speaking children might be more appropriate for selecting a lexicon for AAC systems if indeed, they are different from words produced by ambulatory, speaking children.


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Persistent Identifier