Software to Enrich the Noun Lexicons and Lexical Learning of Children with Autism

Award Information
Agency:
Department of Health and Human Services
Branch
n/a
Amount:
$191,819.00
Award Year:
2010
Program:
SBIR
Phase:
Phase I
Contract:
1R43DC010957-01
Award Id:
95982
Agency Tracking Number:
DC010957
Solicitation Year:
n/a
Solicitation Topic Code:
NIDCD
Solicitation Number:
n/a
Small Business Information
LAUREATE LEARNING SYSTEMS, INC., 110 E SPRING ST, WINOOSKI, VT, 05404
Hubzone Owned:
N
Minority Owned:
N
Woman Owned:
N
Duns:
064237621
Principal Investigator:
MARY WILSON
(802) 655-4755
MARYW@LLSYS.COM
Business Contact:
SWEIG WILSON
() -
kathyh@llsys.com
Research Institute:
n/a
Abstract
DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): The objective of this project is to develop a curriculum and prototype software for a research-based vocabulary development program featuring a combined lexical-cognitive approach to noun acquisition. The target populat ion for the curriculum will be children ages 3;0 to 12;0 with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) as well as a broad range of other children with language disorders. The curriculum will use a core noun vocabulary in four sets of training activities to address four interrelated goals: (a) to train a core noun vocabulary using both fast and slow mapping strategies; (b) to enrich the semantic features of lexical entries by associating functional and/or descriptive information with each noun; (c) to enhance lexical organization by using the core vocabulary in a series of categorization activities involving superordinate classification, inclusion, and exclusion; and (d) to expand paradigmatic schemas with training that associates basic level nouns with paradigmatical ly associated concepts. In Phase I, a subset of the curriculum will be developed and used in field-testing with subjects in the target populations. Data collected will be used to guide Phase II development and field-testing of the full curriculum for effic acy with the target populations specified. PUBLIC HEALTH RELEVANCE: Impaired language is recognized as one of the hallmarks of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Despite extensive incidental exposure to language, many children with ASD have a markedly limited vocabulary and are clearly in need of formal remediation. The goal of this project is to develop a curriculum and prototype software for a research-based vocabulary development program featuring a combined lexical-cognitive approach to noun acquisi tion. The curriculum will focus on helping children to develop the learning processes necessary for efficient lexical acquisition and organization, and on laying the groundwork for a rich and semantically well organized conceptual framework. This will prov ide a cost effective means to promote early language and cognitive development in children with ASD as well as a broad range of other children with language disorders.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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