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Assessment of conversational pragmatics: A screening tool for pragmatic language impairment in a control population of children aged 6–12 years

Abstract : Pragmatics can be defined as the way in which language is used to communicate in a given social context. Although there is a lack of a standardized assessment, healthcare professionals find themselves confronted with pragmatic language skill impairments in children with neurodevelopmental disorders or brain injuries. The characterization of language use causes problems in social interactions, which has clinical implications in daily life. However, this is still underestimated because there is currently no quick, easy-to-use screening device to rank these deficits. We have developed a pragmatic deficits screening chart that has been tested on a control population of children aged 6–12 years. The chart comprises 26 items exploring seven areas of pragmatics (intentionality, governance of exchange, organization of information, adaptation strategies, conversational implicit language, nonverbal skills, and paralinguistic aspects). Parents select one of four possible answers to describe how frequently their child demonstrates each type of behavior (“never, rarely, sometimes, often”). We distributed 1666 charts; 760 were returned, of which 552 could be analyzed. Internal consistency as measured with Cronbach's alpha coefficient (0.88) was satisfactory. There was no influence of age on total score, nor of the department/type of schooling. The population distribution was non-Gaussian so the results are presented in percentiles. We propose a first-line screening tool that is quick and easy to complete by family, which facilitates referral to specialists for further investigations into the etiological implications of pragmatic language impairment.
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https://halshs.archives-ouvertes.fr/halshs-03035308
Contributor : Lucie Macchi <>
Submitted on : Wednesday, December 2, 2020 - 10:17:27 AM
Last modification on : Thursday, December 3, 2020 - 3:22:15 AM

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Perrine Gentilleau-Lambin, Jessica Nicli, A.-F. Richard, Lucie Macchi, C. Barbeau, et al.. Assessment of conversational pragmatics: A screening tool for pragmatic language impairment in a control population of children aged 6–12 years. Archives de Pédiatrie, Elsevier, 2019, 26 (4), pp.214-219. ⟨10.1016/j.arcped.2019.03.004⟩. ⟨halshs-03035308⟩

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