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Int J Pediatr Otorhinolaryngol. 2017 Oct;101:117-122. doi: 10.1016/j.ijporl.2017.07.034. Epub 2017 Jul 27.

Working memory span in Persian-speaking children with speech sound disorders and normal speech development.

Author information

1
Department of Speech Therapy, University of Social Welfare and Rehabilitation Sciences, Tehran, Iran; Department of Speech Therapy, School of Rehabilitation Sciences, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran. Electronic address: mohamad.afshar@gmail.com.
2
Department of Speech Therapy, School of Rehabilitation Sciences, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.
3
Tehran Psychiatric Institute, School of Behavioral Sciences and Mental Health, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.
4
Department of Basic Sciences in Rehabilitation, School of Rehabilitation Sciences, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

The aim of this study was to compare working memory span in Persian-speaking preschool children with speech sound disorder (SSD) and their typically speaking peers. Additionally, the study aimed to examine Non-Word Repetition (NWR), Forward Digit Span (FDS) and Backward Digit Span (BDS) in four groups of children with varying severity levels of SSD.

METHODS:

The participants in this study comprised 35 children with SSD and 35 typically developing (TD) children -matched for age and sex-as a control group. The participants were between the age range of 48 and 72 months. Two components of working memory including phonological loop and central executive were compared between two groups. We used two tasks (NWR and FDS) to assess phonological loop component, and one task (BDS) to assess central executive component. Percentage of correct consonants (PCC) was used to calculate the severity of SSD.

RESULTS:

Significant differences were observed between the two groups in all tasks that assess working memory (p < 0.001). In addition, the comparison of the phonological loop of working memory between the various severity groups indicated significant differences between different severities of both NWR and FDS tasks among the SSD children (p < 0.001). Nevertheless, comparison of the central executive between various severity groups, which was assessed with the BDS task, did not show any significant differences (p > 0.05). The result showed that PCC scores in TD children were associated with NWR (p < 0.001), FDS (p = 0.001), and BDS (p < 0.001). Furthermore, PCC scores in SSD children were associated with NWR and FDS (p < 0.001), but not with BDS (p > 0.05).

CONCLUSION:

The working memory skills were weaker in SSD children, in comparison to TD children. In addition, children with varying levels of severity of SSD differed in terms of NWR and FSD, but not BDS.

KEYWORDS:

Central executive; Persian; Phonological loop; Severity; Speech sound disorders; Typically developing; Working memory

PMID:
28964281
DOI:
10.1016/j.ijporl.2017.07.034
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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