Friday, January 07, 2005

Developmental Changes in Conversational Speech

This article (abstract below) reviewed some noteworthy and practical aspects of the development of childhood conversational ability. With direct questioning, 2 years olds tend to like to answer 'yes' to virtually all yes or no questions - even if the questions themselves were incomprehensible. By 3, a transition seemed to be underway, so that by 4 or 5, comprehensible questions were being answered accurately, but incomprehensible questions were not (they tended to always get the answer "No"). At all ages children are reluctant to say they didn't know the answer even if they were told that such a response was acceptable. Many children also tended to abandon some of their correct answers for questions if context suggested otherwise or the examiner seemed satisfied by a different answer. Children can be difficult test...

ScienceDirect - Trends in Cognitive Sciences : Conceptual development and conversational understanding

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