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Perseverant responding in children’s picture naming

Booth, Josephine N. and Vitkovitch, Melanie (2008) Perseverant responding in children’s picture naming. Journal of Child Language, 35 (1). pp. 235-246. ISSN 0305-0009

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Abstract

Two groups of children were given pictures of animals to name as quickly as they could. The groups comprised 40 nursery aged children (mean age 3 ;11) and 40 Year 2 children (mean age 6;9) attending primary school in London. The 30 animals were presented one by one, on cards, and any errors made by the children were noted. Consistent with a similar object naming study with adults (Vitkovitch, Kirby & Tyrrell, 1996) and a study with children (Gershkoff-Stowe, 2002), picture naming errors referred to earlier named objects. However, while adults showed below-chance interference from objects that had only just been named (Lag 1), children were most susceptible to interference from very recently named objects (see also Gershkoff-Stowe, 2002). Furthermore, the proportion of younger children making Lag 1 errors was higher than the proportion of older children making Lag 1 errors. The results are discussed in relation to the activation levels of lexical representations.