Phonological awareness and early intervention

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Glaser, Sharon

Studies have shown that the explicit instruction of phonological awareness (PA), an individual's ability to attend to and manipulate the sound structure of a spoken word, significantly influences later literacy. Current research being conducted is looking at the duration and intensity of PA instruction. The purpose of this study was to examine the effect of low-intensity, short duration PA intervention upon preschool-aged children with the following questions: Is there a difference in the pre-and post-test phonological awareness scores of children in PA intervention? Is there a gain difference made in phonological awareness task scores between typically developing children and children with identified speech and/or language (SL) impairment in PA intervention? Forty children (21 males, 19 females) aged 2:5-5:10 (12 SL impaired) participated in a weekly literacy development class with caregivers, containing fifteen minutes of PA instruction. Paired sample t-tests of pre- and post-scores evidenced significant improvement. Independent sample t-test showed no significant difference between "groups" in gain scores. This suggests that explicit PA instruction, even of short duration and low intensity, yielded positive results, for both typically developing children and children with SL impairments.

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Second place winner of oral presentations at the 14th Annual Undergraduate Research and Creative Activity Forum (URCAF) held at the Hughes Metropolitan Complex, Wichita State University, April 8, 2014.