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Phonological development in lexically precocious 2-year-olds



To examine interactions between young children's vocabulary size and their phonological abilities, spontaneous language samples were collected from 24-month-olds with precocious lexicons, their age mates (24-month-olds with average-sized lexicons), and their vocabulary mates (30-month-olds with average-sized lexicons). Phonological ability was measured in a variety of ways, such as the number of different consonants that were targeted, the number of different consonants produced correctly, the percentage of consonants produced correctly, and the occurrence of phonological processes. The lexically precocious 24-month-olds were similar to their vocabulary mates on most measures of phonological ability, and both of these groups were generally superior to the 24-month-olds with smaller lexicons. These findings supported a hypothesized relationship between lexicon size and phonological performance, and demonstrated that 2-year-olds' phonological development is more closely related to size of the lexicon than chronological age.


Corresponding author

Bruce L. Smith, Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders, University of Utah, 390 South 1530 East, Room 1201, Salt Lake City, UT 84112-0252. E-mail:


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Phonological development in lexically precocious 2-year-olds



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