Presentation Type

Poster

Abstract

Purpose - To analyze written persuasive language samples of seventh-graders to add to the local normative database by examining the use of literate vocabulary. Literate vocabulary refers to words that have a low frequency of natural occurrence in language, however, tend to appear in formal writing. Specifically, we will be examining the use of adverbial conjuncts (e.g., in conclusion, personally, technically), abstract nouns (e.g., freedom, enjoyment, opinion), and metacognitive/metalinguistic verbs (e.g., persuade, decide, imagine). Through examination of written persuasive essays we will gain further insight into literate vocabulary norms of seventh-graders.

Methods - Written language samples were collected from seventh-grade students from a middle school in Missoula, Montana. All students were prompted to write a persuasive essay on a common topic. Each student’s essay was keyboarded into the Systematic Analysis of Language Transcripts computer program. Each vocabulary variable was coded as either [AC] (adverbial conjuncts), [MTVL] (metalinguistic/metacognitive verbs), [ABN] (abstract nouns). Each writing sample was coded by two separate investigators. Reliability for coding each vocabulary variable reached at least 95%. A correlation analysis will be used to determine whether there is a relationship between literate language usage and standardized reading scores.

Originality - Language sample analysis is under-utilized when assessing older students, since few language norms for this age group have been established.

Significance - Language sample analysis is a widely known preferred clinical practice for speech-language pathologists according to the American Speech-Language Hearing Association, but is seldom used with school-aged clients in the upper elementary grades and beyond. It is important to regularly collect and analyze language samples because language development is continual throughout childhood, adolescence and adulthood. Few studies have used language sample analysis to determine developmental milestones in adolescent language, so this study will contribute to the gap in the literature regarding adolescent language norms. With this information we hope to obtain an understanding of the average productivity and usage of literate vocabulary for adolescents in 7th grade. These writing samples can be used to create a normative database in regards to these measures. Additionally, if literate vocabulary usage is significantly correlated with reading scores, this will further strengthen the argument for language sample analysis in the upper grades.

Category

Social Sciences

Share

COinS
 
Apr 15th, 11:00 AM Apr 15th, 12:00 PM

Literate Vocabulary in the Written Language Samples of Seventh-Graders

Purpose - To analyze written persuasive language samples of seventh-graders to add to the local normative database by examining the use of literate vocabulary. Literate vocabulary refers to words that have a low frequency of natural occurrence in language, however, tend to appear in formal writing. Specifically, we will be examining the use of adverbial conjuncts (e.g., in conclusion, personally, technically), abstract nouns (e.g., freedom, enjoyment, opinion), and metacognitive/metalinguistic verbs (e.g., persuade, decide, imagine). Through examination of written persuasive essays we will gain further insight into literate vocabulary norms of seventh-graders.

Methods - Written language samples were collected from seventh-grade students from a middle school in Missoula, Montana. All students were prompted to write a persuasive essay on a common topic. Each student’s essay was keyboarded into the Systematic Analysis of Language Transcripts computer program. Each vocabulary variable was coded as either [AC] (adverbial conjuncts), [MTVL] (metalinguistic/metacognitive verbs), [ABN] (abstract nouns). Each writing sample was coded by two separate investigators. Reliability for coding each vocabulary variable reached at least 95%. A correlation analysis will be used to determine whether there is a relationship between literate language usage and standardized reading scores.

Originality - Language sample analysis is under-utilized when assessing older students, since few language norms for this age group have been established.

Significance - Language sample analysis is a widely known preferred clinical practice for speech-language pathologists according to the American Speech-Language Hearing Association, but is seldom used with school-aged clients in the upper elementary grades and beyond. It is important to regularly collect and analyze language samples because language development is continual throughout childhood, adolescence and adulthood. Few studies have used language sample analysis to determine developmental milestones in adolescent language, so this study will contribute to the gap in the literature regarding adolescent language norms. With this information we hope to obtain an understanding of the average productivity and usage of literate vocabulary for adolescents in 7th grade. These writing samples can be used to create a normative database in regards to these measures. Additionally, if literate vocabulary usage is significantly correlated with reading scores, this will further strengthen the argument for language sample analysis in the upper grades.