No AccessLanguage, Speech, and Hearing Services in SchoolsResearch Article1 Jul 1996

Social Skills of Children With Specific Language Impairment

    The social skills of 19 elementary school children with specific language impairment (SLI) and 19 chronological age-matched peers were examined. Children in both groups were selected from those children between the ages of 8 and 12 years. Each child with SLI was individually matched to a classmate of the same age. First, the Social Skills Rating System-Teacher Form (Gresham & Elliott, 1990) was administered to provide a general measure of social skill. Following this measure, the quantity of peer relationships was assessed in both groups using an informal picture task. This measure provided an indication of the peers with whom each child interacted while taking part in a variety of activities. The quality of peer relationships was then assessed using the Williams and Asher Loneliness Questionnaire (Williams & Asher, 1992). It was found that children with SLI differed from their peers on all three measures. These results suggested that the children with SLI had poorer social skills and fewer peer relationships, and were less satisfied with the peer relationships in which they participated when compared with their age-matched classmates.

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