Refereed journal article or data article (A1)

Procedural motor learning in children with specific language impairment

List of Authors: Teenu Sanjeevan, Elina Mainela-Arnold

Publisher: American Speech - Language - Hearing Association

Publication year: 2017

Journal: Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research

Volume number: 60

Issue number: 11

Start page: 3259

End page: 3269

Number of pages: 11

ISSN: 1092-4388

eISSN: 1558-9102



Purpose: Specific language impairment (SLI) is a developmental disorder that affects language and motor development in the absence of a clear cause. An explanation for these impairments is offered by the procedural deficit hypothesis (PDH), which argues that motor difficulties in SLI are due to deficits in procedural memory. The aim of this study was to test the PDH by examining the procedural motor learning abilities of children with and without SLI.

Method: Thirteen children with SLI and 14 age-matched typically developing children completed the following procedural measures: (a) a knot-tying task as a measure of motor sequencing and (2) a mirror-drawing task as a measure of visual–motor adaptation.

Results: Although children with SLI produced significantly more errors on certain knot-tying tasks, they performed comparably on others. Also, children with SLI performed comparably with typically developing children on the mirror-drawing task.

Conclusions: The PDH requires reframing. The sequence learning deficits in SLI are modest and specific to more difficult tasks. Visual–motor adaptation, on the other hand, appears to be unaffected in SLI.

Last updated on 2021-24-06 at 10:41