[The Canadian SLP] Language ability, executive functioning and behaviour in school-age children.

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Project Coordinator

Oct 21, 2015, 10:50:22 AM10/21/15
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Karasinski, C. (2015). Language ability, executive functioning and behaviour in school-age children. International Journal of Language & Communication Disorders, 50(2), 144–150.

Executive functions are the complex thinking skills that enable us to use self-control, set goals, track our progress while executing those goals, and adjust our strategies if necessary. We use our executive functions whenever we solve problems or break away from our usual routine. The three most commonly studied components of executive function are inhibition, working memory, and task switching. This paper sought to examine the connections between executive function, language, and behaviour, in school-age children.

A total of 42 children (8–11 years) with a range of abilities completed measures of language, nonverbal intelligence, and executive functioning. In the executive function measure, children were required to sort pictures according to a changing rule. Parents also completed questionnaires about each child’s attention, behaviour, and executive function abilities. Data were analyzed first by looking for correlations between measures, and second by testing possible predictors of language, attention, and behaviour ratings.

Results showed a tenuous connection between language ability and executive functioning. Although both the executive function measures correlated with language, they did not predict language ability as well as nonverbal intelligence did. Behaviour was best predicted by the parent’s responses to questions about their child’s ability to inhibit responses. This finding is consistent with other research showing a relation between poor inhibition and attention difficulties.

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Posted By Project Coordinator to The Canadian SLP at 10/21/2015 10:50:00 AM
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