Helping the AAC User Acquire Grammatical Morphology Grammatical morphemes include prepositions, pronouns, articles, auxiliary verb forms, possessive markers, and tense markers. According to Brown (1973)  grammatical morphemes are described by a partial convergence of anumber of characteristics. They are closed class morphemes with a small, relatively fixed membership, they primarily fulfill structural roles in language and ... Article
Article  |   November 01, 1997
Helping the AAC User Acquire Grammatical Morphology
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Susan Blockberger
    Sunny Hill Health Centre for Children and University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, Canada
Article Information
Articles
Article   |   November 01, 1997
Helping the AAC User Acquire Grammatical Morphology
SIG 12 Perspectives on Augmentative and Alternative Communication, November 1997, Vol. 6, 5-7. doi:10.1044/aac6.4.5
SIG 12 Perspectives on Augmentative and Alternative Communication, November 1997, Vol. 6, 5-7. doi:10.1044/aac6.4.5
Grammatical morphemes include prepositions, pronouns, articles, auxiliary verb forms, possessive markers, and tense markers. According to Brown (1973)  grammatical morphemes are described by a partial convergence of anumber of characteristics. They are closed class morphemes with a small, relatively fixed membership, they primarily fulfill structural roles in language and usually modulate meaning rather than providing entirely new information, and they tend to have low perceptual salience and are often bound or cliticized.
Recently I have presented information that suggests that children who are unable to speak have particular difficulty in the acquisition of grammatical morphology (Blockberger, 1996; Blockberger & Johnston, 1997). The acquisition of three grammatical morphemes, past tense ed possessives, and third person regular s was probed in a group of 20 children with very severe speech impairments (less than 10 words intelligible to strangers) and fairly good comprehension of content vocabulary (Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test scores of 4;0 to 8; 11). These children ranged in chronological age from 5;8 to 17;1. In three different tasks—a comprehension task, a grammatically judgment task, and a fill-in-the-blank structured output task—children who were nonspeaking had more difficulty than typical children of the same PPVT language age (chronological age range 4; 1 to 8;7). They also had more difficulty on these three tasks than a group of speaking children with similar chronological ages and similar delays on the PPVT (Blockberger, in press).
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