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Duff – Research into Early Vocabulary and Effect on Reading and Literacy
The rationale of this study was to identify if infants who were late in talking and understanding words are at a higher risk of reading and literacy difficulties and whether we can predict children who will struggle to read and comprehend language at primary school.
This was a longitudinal study of children (16 to 24 months) already known to the Oxford University Babylab, who were screened using the Oxford Communicative Development Inventory (OCDI), a checklist of 416 words measuring knowledge of words and meanings. Duff etal followed up 300 of these children (4 and 9 years) and tested their knowledge of vocabulary, phonological awareness, reading accuracy, comprehension and nonverbal ability.
The main finding confirmed a link between infants with a larger vocabulary who go on to higher achievement in literacy standards at primary school level. The study showed a family history of literacy problems is a high-risk factor for their children’s reading ability.
The implications of the study are that early intervention should take account of a broader range issues than just early vocabulary.
I found the statistics confusing particularly the standardised scores.

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