posted on 2020-11-16, 22:07authored byCatherine Stephan, Liv Clasen, Elizabeth Adeyemi, Nancy Raitano Lee
Background: Down syndrome (DS) is a disorder characterized by impairments in global cognitive abilities and adaptive function. In addition, individuals with DS demonstrate pronounced speech and language deficits. However, little is known about the linguistic correlates of impaired adaptive functioning in DS.
Method: Using the Adaptive Behavior Assessment System–Second Edition and the Children’s Communication Checklist–Second Edition (CCC-2), this study investigated the unique variance in adaptive skills accounted for by speech and language impairments in individuals with DS (N = 29, Mage = 13.46).
Results: Pearson correlations revealed that a composite of CCC-2 structural language scales, but not pragmatic language scales, was significantly correlated with the Adaptive Behavior Assessment System–Second Edition Global Adaptive Composite, Conceptual, and Practical domains. Further investigation utilizing hierarchical regression analyses identified only the Speech scale on the CCC-2 as contributing unique variance to the prediction of adaptive behavior scores in the Global Adaptive Composite, Conceptual, and Practical domains.
Conclusion: Speech impairments may serve as flags to identify children with DS who are at risk for adaptive behavior deficits and reinforce the need for speech-language therapies that focus on speech for these individuals.
Supplemental Material S1. Hierarchical regression model of ABAS-II GAC and Composites for participants age 16 and younger (n = 20) for Structural Language subscales.
Supplemental Material S2. Hierarchical regression model of ABAS-II GAC and composites for participants with no hearing loss (n = 20) for structural language subscales.
Stephan, C., Clasen, L., Adeyemi, E., & Lee, N. R. (2020). Speech impairments explain unique variance in adaptive behavior skills in young people with Down syndrome. American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1044/2020_AJSLP-20-00054
Funding for this study was provided to Jay N. Giedd (protocol PI) at the time data were collected by the National Institute of Mental Health (1 ZIA MH002794-13; Protocol ID 89-M-0006).