Speech competence of children vulnerable to psychopathology

Philip D. Harvey, Sheldon Weintraub, John M. Neale

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Scopus citations


Verbal productivity and cohesion and reference patterns of children of schizophrenics (N=23), unipolars (N=43), bipolars (N=38), and normals (N=53) were assessed using the Rochester and Martin (1979) evaluation system. Children of all offspring groups could be discriminated from one another, with children of schizophrenics showing the most deviant speech performance across all dependent measures. Children of schizophrenics were less verbally productive and had poorer patterns of cohesion between ideas than children of normals. In addition, they produced more unclear and ambiguous references to previously mentioned ideas than did children of normals. The consistency of deviance and performance on specific dependent variables in these children at risk for schizophrenia was similar to the speech performance of thought-disordered schizophrenics. Possible explanations for these similarities were discussed and evaluated.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)373-387
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Abnormal Child Psychology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 1982
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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