Perceptual Development and Sequencing Skills inChildren with a History of Ear Infections Margaret Adair University of Arkansas firstname.lastname@example.org
Overview • Why? • Early identification of children who are at risk for learning disorders • How? • Looking at perceptual asynchrony across multiple physical systems • Comparing language skills across children with or without one or multiple asynchronic systems
Literature Review • Gibson’s(1966) foundation • Individual sensory units (e.g., vision, hearing, touch) have to function as an active and interactive system • The working combination of senses– the “perceptual organ” • This idea sets the foundation for thinking of the interactive senses as being vital to perceptual development of children
Literature Review • Senses as Systems– more recent studies • Stein & Meredith (1993)– senses merge with each other during processing • Kemeny et al. (2006)– fMRI study showed interaction of visual, auditory & articulatory-perceptual systems during formulation & production of language
Literature Review • Development, Sensory Systems, & Perceptual Deficiencies • Perception via vision, hearing, and oral-tactile systems • Common feature: require coordinated motor action– time/space motor issues frequently cited in literature on learning disabilities • Likely that these motor issues would be a common feature for all physical modalities rather than just for a single sensory system (Getchell, McMenamin, & Whitall, 2005)
Literature Review • Integrated Sensory Systems • Different forms of sensory specific perception depend on each other for complete understanding– McGurk effect (Thesen, Vibell, Calvert, & Osterbauer, 2004) • Insufficient coordination of visual, auditory, and oral-motor modalities are highly suspect for children with learning disorders, which are linked to spoken, heard, and seen symbol systems (Rosner, 1975; Hagstrom, 2003)
Literature Review • PE Tube Controversy • Longitudinal Pennsylvania study– placement versus non-placement of PE tubes DID NOT correlate with the development of language skills or with school failure (Neighmond, 2007) • Is there more to it than JUST the PE tubes? • What if there are more deficient sensory systems than just the ear’s?
Literature Review • How do we identify oral-motor sensory-perceptual problems in preschool children? • Until recently, there has not been an formal measure. • The Preschool Repetition Test is a newly developed oral-motor test for children as young as two years of age (Chait & Roy, 2007)
Purpose of the Study To investigate one particular subset of pre-school children, i.e., those with a history of ear infections, in order to determine if differences in oral-motor functioning co-existed for these young children
Participants 37 Participants Age range: 23 -59 months 6 10 5 16 Ear Status: No Ear Infections: n=9 History of Ear Infections & No Tubes: n=17 History of Ear Infections + Tubes: n=11
Materials • Developmental History Form • Preschool Repetition Test (Chiat & Roy, 2007) • MacArthur-Bates Communicative Development Inventories– measure of language acquisition (Fenson et. al, 2007)
Procedures • Children sought in Preschools throughout Northwest Arkansas • Parents completed Developmental History and MacArhur-Bates Communicative Development Inventories (Vocabulary sections only) prior to data collection • Preschool Repetition Test administered to children
Question 1: Did children with a history of ear infections have poorer language skills than children without a history of ear infections? No History of Ear Infections History of Ear Infections History of Ear Infections & Tubes
Question 2: Do children with oral-motor asynchrony have poorer language skills than children without oral-motor asynchrony? 79% 82% 75% 14% 17% 9% 9% 7% 8% Above age expected Vocabulary Scores Age expected Vocabulary Scores Below age expected Vocabulary Scores
Question 3: Did children with a history of ear infections who also displayed oral-motor asynchrony have poorer language skills? Above and within age expected total Repetition score Below age expected total Repetition score
Question 4: Did children with a history of ear infections who received PE tube have better language skills than children with ear infections who did not received PE tubes or children with no history of ear infections if oral-motor asynchrony was also present? History of Ear Infections, Plus Tubes History of Ear Infections; No Tubes
Discussion • On the surface, same results as Pennsylvania study but variation suggests further research • Two of the four children with oral-motor asynchrony (& ear infections) had poorer vocabulary scores • One child was an exception: history of ear infections & PE tubes and oral-motor asynchrony but above age-expected vocabulary • Only children with a history of ear infections had oral-motor asynchrony
Conclusions • Suggests that combined ear infections and oral-motor asynchrony may provide sufficient reason to evaluate a child’s linguistic development • This may be an issue for a small subset of children • Other factors may contribute to perceptual developmental delay in addition to ear infections and oral-motor asynchrony (i.e., visual focusing)
Limitations & Future Directions • Limited number of participants • Unable to study children in depth • No participants with oral-motor asynchrony and without a history of ear infections • Demographics • Vocabulary inventory alone used to assess language
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