Fast mapping semantic features: Performance of adults with normal language, history of disorders of spoken and written language, and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder on a word-learning task

Mary Alt, Michelle L. Gutmann

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

Purpose: This study was designed to test the word learning abilities of adults with typical language abilities, those with a history of disorders of spoken or written language (hDSWL), and hDSWL plus attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (+ADHD). Methods: Sixty-eight adults were required to associate a novel object with a novel label, and then recognize semantic features of the object and phonological features of the label. Participants were tested for overt ability (accuracy) and covert processing (reaction time). Results: The +ADHD group was less accurate at mapping semantic features and slower to respond to lexical labels than both other groups. Different factors correlated with word learning performance for each group. Conclusions: Adults with language and attention deficits are more impaired at word learning than adults with language deficits only. Despite behavioral profiles like typical peers, adults with hDSWL may use different processing strategies than their peers. Learning Outcomes: Readers will be able to: (1) recognize the influence of a dual disability (hDSWL and ADHD) on word learning outcomes; (2) identify factors that may contribute to word learning in adults in terms of (a) the nature of the words to be learned and (b) the language processing of the learner.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)347-364
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Communication Disorders
Volume42
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2009

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Linguistics and Language
  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • LPN and LVN
  • Speech and Hearing

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