Portland State University. Department of Speech Communication
Term of Graduation
Date of Publication
Master of Science (M.S.) in Speech Communication: Speech and Hearing Sciences
Otitis media in children, Articulation disorders in children, Language acquisition
1 online resource (4, vii, 52 pages)
Researchers have long been concerned with the effects of otitis media on speech and language acquisition because of the high correlation of a mild to moderate hearing loss during the time period that fluid (effusion) may be in the middle ear. Middle-ear effusion would prevent many of the auditory messages from accurately reaching the nervous system (Zinkus, 1986). Deprived of the ability to discern the subtle acoustic differences that provide information for phonetic contrasts, a child's speech acquisition may differ from children who do not experience such losses.
The present study examined the relationship between an early history of otitis media and the speech development of two groups of children: one, a group of 27 "late-talking" toddlers who, while otherwise normal, had not reached normal language milestones by age 2; and a second group of toddlers with normal language development. Within these two diagnostic groups, each of the subjects was placed into one of two subgroups: a subgroup with a reported history of "ear infections" and a subgroup without such a history. When the children were 3 years old, they were seen again and evaluated using the Goldman Fristoe Test of Articulation (GFTA) . A similar group of 25 children who had a history of normal language development was also examined.
1. How does the mean number of reported episodes of "ear infections" in the late-talker group compare to the number in the normal-language group?
2. Are there significant differences between scores on the GFTA between groups of late talkers with and without a history of middle-ear involvement at 3 years of age, suggesting a difference in the acquisition of speech sounds based on history of middle-ear involvement?
3. Are there significant differences between scores on the GFTA between groups of normal talkers with and without a history of middle-ear involvement at 3 years of age, suggesting a difference in the acquisition of speech sounds based on a history of middle-ear involvement?
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Lohr-Flanders, Marla, "The Effect of Otitis Media on Articulation in Expressive Language-Delayed Children" (1991). Dissertations and Theses. Paper 4365.