Language production abilities of children whose stuttering persisted or recovered

Ruth V. Watkins, Ehud Yairi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study evaluated the language production capabilities of 32 young children whose stuttering followed divergent paths: one group whose stuttering persisted, one group who stuttered relatively briefly and recovered, and one group who stuttered for a longer period prior to recovery. Three indices of language production (mean length of utterance, number of different words, and number of total words) were obtained from spontaneous language samples. Measures of language production were calculated from samples collected at an initial visit near stuttering onset and at a one- year follow-up visit. Results revealed that the majority of the children who stuttered performed within the average range on these measures of language production. One child, a child whose stuttering persisted, consistently performed below the average range on all measures. Comparison of the three groups revealed greater variability, as well as atypical patterns of development, in the language production skills of children whose stuttering persisted. These findings suggest that although language production deficits do not appear to be widespread in children who stutter, examination of individual patterns of performance is central to clarifying the developmental relationship between language proficiency and the production of fluent speech.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)385-399
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1997


  • Language proficiency
  • Persistence
  • Recovery
  • Stuttering

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Linguistics and Language
  • Speech and Hearing


Dive into the research topics of 'Language production abilities of children whose stuttering persisted or recovered'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this