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Procedural learning in children with CAS (Iuzzini-Seigel, 2021)

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posted on 30.03.2021, 16:51 by Jenya Iuzzini-Seigel
Purpose: This case–control study sought to determine if (a) children with childhood apraxia of speech (CAS), other speech sound disorders (SSDs), and typical development would perform differently on a procedural learning assessment and (b) whether grammatical ability would impact group differences.
Method: Communication, motor, and procedural learning abilities were assessed in 48 children with CAS (n = 13), SSD (n = 20), and typical development (n = 15), between 43 and 97 months of age (M = 66 months, SD = 12 months).
Results: On average, children with CAS demonstrated grammatical and motor impairments and required an increased number of exposures to the visuospatial sequence to demonstrate procedural learning, compared to peers with SSD or typical development. A subset of children from each group demonstrated an unanticipated procedural learning pattern wherein they evidenced an uptick in reaction time during the second sequenced block. Children with CAS with this pattern still evidenced procedural learning gains by the fifth sequenced block. In contrast, children with SSD and typical development with this pattern showed poor procedural learning outcomes and were characterized by lower scores on language and motor assessments as well.
Conclusions: This research provides partial support for the procedural learning deficit hypothesis in children with CAS and for a subset of children with SSD as well. Future research should examine the role of a serial reaction time task in identifying children at risk of multisystem communication and motor deficits.

Supplemental Material S1. STROBE Statement—Checklist of items that should be included in reports of case-control studies.

Iuzzini-Seigel, J. (2021). Procedural learning, grammar, and motor skills in children with childhood apraxia of speech, speech sound disorder, and typically developing speech. Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1044/2020_JSLHR-20-00581

Funding

Funding was provided by Apraxia Kids (PI: Iuzzini-Seigel), ASHA’s Advancing Academic Research Careers Award, Once Upon A Time…, and Marquette University’s Summer Faculty Fellowship, Regular Research Grant, and Way Klingler Young Scholar Award.

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