INSTRUCTING NOVEL NAMES TO A CHILD WITH DOWN SYNDROME USING PRINCIPLES OF FAST MAPPING

Open Access
Author:
Pu, Helen
Area of Honors:
Communication Sciences and Disorders
Degree:
Bachelor of Science
Document Type:
Thesis
Thesis Supervisors:
  • Krista M Wilkinson, Thesis Supervisor
  • Carol Anne Miller, Honors Advisor
Keywords:
  • language
  • disambiguation
  • exclusion
  • Down syndrome
  • fast mapping
  • novel nouns
Abstract:
Fast mapping is a phenomenon in which children rapidly acquire language based on a limited number of exposures. Children accomplish fast mapping through exclusion, or choosing novel things over familiar things when given a novel referent. In this study, we examined whether exclusion will be effective as a means of instruction to teach a young boy with Down syndrome novel animal names. We used a computer program to design various teaching sessions that contain unknown animals contrasted with known animals. With this program, we tested his ability to a) correctly choose the animal’s name given a photograph of the animal b) choose the animal’s photograph given the name c) generalize the animals’ photographs, and d) remember the animals over an extended period of time.