02/01/2018 Linguistics Psychology
DOI: 10.1080/10489223.2016.1192635 SemanticScholar ID: 151889217 MAG: 2520557464

How to identify SLI in bilingual children: A study on sentence repetition in French

Publication Summary

ABSTRACT Identifying specific language impairment (SLI) in bilingual children represents a clinical challenge because of similarities in language behavior between child second language learners and monolinguals with SLI and because of the lack of standardized language tests on bilingual children. This study investigated the relevance of a LITMUS (Language Impairment Testing in Multilingual Settings) sentence repetition (SR) task based on language properties difficult for French-speaking children with SLI for the diagnosis of language impairment in bilinguals. The task was administered to 47 bilingual children aged 5;02 to 8;09, 35 with typical development (TD) and 12 with SLI, and to 50 monolingual controls (37 with TD and 13 with SLI). Percentage of identical repetition significantly distinguished between children with SLI and children with TD in both bilinguals and monolinguals and on all structure types. Moreover, no correlations were found between factors of bilingual development, such as age of onset, length of exposure, and quantity and quality of input, and the low repetition rates of the bilingual children with SLI, suggesting that the LITMUS-SR-French task can be used as an efficient diagnosis tool in bilinguals.

CAER Authors

Avatar Image for Philippe Prévost

Prof. Philippe Prévost

University of Tours - Professor of linguistics

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