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Short-term longitudinal study of a child with Williams syndrome

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Deborah James


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Background: The superiority of language and communication skills in children and adults with Williams syndrome (WS) is currently being debated. Whilst there have been a number of reports of precursors of language in WS in children who have already developed language, there have not been many studies that have prospectively investigated precursors of language in pre-verbal children with WS. Aims: To investigate the development of early social communication skills before the onset of language in WS. Methods & Procedures: A short-term longitudinal single case study was carried out spanning 10 months. The child was assessed five times using parent report, observation of mother-child interactions and by administering the Pre-verbal Communication Schedule, the Pragmatics Profile of Early Communication Skills and the Pre-School Language Scale - 3. Outcomes & Results: Longitudinal comparisons showed that the level of verbal communication in the child with WS always lagged behind the level of motor and cognitive development. Conclusions: The results indicate that rather than being a strength, social communication was an area of weakness relative to other aspects of development in this case. This case raises the potential desirability for early speech and language assessment and intervention in infants with WS. © 2006 Royal College of Speech & Language Therapists.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Stojanovik V, James D

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: International Journal of Language and Communication Disorders

Year: 2006

Volume: 41

Issue: 2

Pages: 213-223

ISSN (print): 0963-7273

ISSN (electronic): 1460-6984

Publisher: Informa Healthcare


DOI: 10.1080/13682820500138382

PubMed id: 16546896


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