Author(s): Gray S
Thirty preschool children with specific language impairment (SLI) and 30 age-matched controls with normal language (NL) participated in a study to compare group performance and to examine the relationship between fast mapping and word learning and between comprehension and production of new words. The groups performed similarly on the fast-mapping task. The NL group comprehended and produced significantly more words than the SLI group, and did so in fewer trials. Language test scores did not predict word-learning performance for either group. Some children with SLI may need to hear a new word twice as many times as their NL peers before comprehending it and may need twice as many opportunities to practice producing the word before using it independently.