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 SRCLD Presentation Details 

    • Vocabulary and dialect density are significant predictors of complex syntax production.  
Bryan Murray - Georgia State University
Julie Washington - Georgia State University

SRCLD Year: 2019
Presentation Type: Poster Presentation
Poster Number: PS1F10
Presentation Time: Fri, Jun 7, 2019 from 8:30a-10:00a
Use of Complex Syntax in Low-Income, School-aged African American Children who Speak AAE

This investigation examines the use of complex syntax in a sample of low-income African American (AA) children enrolled in first through fifth grades. Complex syntax supports academic success in all language-based skill areas (e.g., reading and writing). Among preschool aged AA boys complex syntax has been identified as an area of weakness compared to AA girls and boys are more likely to struggle with early reading and writing skills. Complex syntax has not been systematically studied in African American children enrolled in elementary school. A large sample (n = 891) of low-income African American school-aged boys (430) and girls (461) were administered several measures of complex syntax. Data were analyzed using hierarchical linear regression with age, gender, vocabulary, and dialect density included as predictor variables. No differences in use of complex syntax was evident by gender of the speaker or morphological comprehension. Dialect density was negatively correlated with complex syntax and vocabulary. Vocabulary and dialect density are significant predictors of complex syntax production. This research is supported by NICHD grant 1R24HDO7545-01
Supported in part by: NIDCD and NICHD, NIH, R13 DC001677, Susan Ellis Weismer, Principal Investigator
University of Wisconsin-Madison - Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders