Strength for Today and Bright Hope for Tomorrow

Volume 11 : 11 November 2011
ISSN 1930-2940

Managing Editor: M. S. Thirumalai, Ph.D.
Editors: B. Mallikarjun, Ph.D.
         Sam Mohanlal, Ph.D.
         B. A. Sharada, Ph.D.
         A. R. Fatihi, Ph.D.
         Lakhan Gusain, Ph.D.
         Jennifer Marie Bayer, Ph.D.
         S. M. Ravichandran, Ph.D.
         G. Baskaran, Ph.D.
         L. Ramamoorthy, Ph.D.





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Fast Mapping in Children with Learning Disability

Meghashree, M.Sc. Speech and Hearing, Theaja Kuriakose, M.Sc. Speech and Hearing,
Supriya R. (Intern), and Tejaswini G. (Intern)


Learning disability is a heterogeneous group of disorders manifested by significant difficulties in the acquisition and use of listening, speaking, reading, writing, reasoning or mathematical abilities. These disorders are intrinsic to the individual and presumed to be due to Central Nervous System Dysfunction. Even though a learning disability may occur concomitantly with other handicapping conditions (e.g. sensory impairment, mental retardation, social and emotional disturbance) or environmental influences (e.g. cultural differences, insufficient/inappropriate instruction, psychogenic factors) it is not the direct result of those conditions or influences (National Joint Committee on Learning Disabilities 1980). This disorder can make it problematic for a person to learn as quickly or in the same way as someone who is not affected by a learning disability. People with a learning disability have trouble performing specific types of skills or completing tasks.

Dollaghan (1987) describes fast mapping as "a lexical acquisition strategy in which a listener rapidly constructs a representation of an unfamiliar word on the basis of a single exposure to it. This initial representation might contain information on semantic, phonological, or syntactic characteristics of the new lexical item, as well as non-linguistic information related to the situation in which it is encountered".

Aim: The present study was taken up with the aim of understanding the nature of fast mapping in children with learning disability.

Method: the participants were 30 normal children (15 Males and 15 Females) without any speech and language problems and 15 children (7 Females and 8 Males) diagnosed as having learning disability. The material used for the study was 20 familiar words and 10 novel words. Fast mapping ability for the novel words were compared between the normal children and children with learning disability.

Results: Results indicated that there is a significant difference in fast mapping skills between normal and children with learning disability. Children with learning disability had poorer performance compared to that of normal.

Keywords: Learning Disability, Fast Mapping, Lexicon.


Language is an essential aspect of human interaction and transmission of information. It may be defined as “a socially shared code or conventional system for representing concepts through the use of arbitrary symbols and rule governed combinations of those symbols” (Owens, 1996). The ability to use the vocal apparatus to express the feeling, describe an event and to establish communication is unique to human beings. Language can be divided into three major components: form, content and use (Bloom & Lahey, 1978). Speech is the dynamic production of sounds for oral communication. Van Riper (1990) defines “speech as the audible manifestation of language”.

This is only the beginning part of the article. PLEASE CLICK HERE TO READ THE ARTICLE IN PRINTER-FRIENDLY VERSION.

Meghashree, M.Sc. Speech and Hearing
JSS Institute of Speech and Hearing
Ooty Road
Mysore 570 025
Karnataka, India

Theaja Kuriakose, M.Sc. Speech and Hearing
JSS Institute of Speech and Hearing
Ooty Road
Mysore 570 025
Karnataka, India

Supriya, R.
Intern (B.Sc. Speech and Hearing)
JSS Institute of Speech and Hearing
Ooty Road
Mysore 570 025
Karnataka, India

Tejaswini, G.
Intern (B.Sc. Speech and Hearing)
JSS Institute of Speech and Hearing
Ooty Road
Mysore 570 025
Karnataka, India

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