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J Speech Hear Res. 1994 Aug;37(4):841-51.

Facilitating prelinguistic communication skills in young children with developmental delay. II: Systematic replication and extension.

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John F. Kennedy Center, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN.


Four children with mental retardation were studied in the context of a multiple baseline across subjects design. Staff members used a modified version of the milieu teaching method to facilitate intentional requesting. The results replicated the finding that a modified version of milieu teaching was effective in facilitating the use of intentional requesting by children with developmental delays in an intervention context (Warren, Yoder, Gazdag, Kim, & Jones, 1993). This study also extended the Warren et al. (1993) work by (a) documenting that increased intentional requesting generalized to sessions with the children's mothers, (b) demonstrating that mothers who were naive to the purposes of the study were more likely to linguistically map their children's prelinguistic communication after the intervention than before the treatment, and (c) that mothers and teachers who were naive to the purposes of the study linguistically mapped the children's intentional communication more than the children's preintentional communication. We discuss implications of these results for early intervention, the transactional theory of development, and the importance of the distinction between intentional versus preintentional communication.

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