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By: Cecilia M. Shore

In: Individual Differences in Language Development

Chapter 4: Explanations for Individual Differences in Language Development

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Explanations for Individual Differences in Language Development
Explanations for individual differences in language development

Why do children show different patterns of language development? Many different explanations have been proposed. Explanations run the entire range of developmental mechanisms, from rate of maturation of brain areas to social class. I discuss several of these in turn, together with whatever relevant data are available. These are organized in a rough sequence from external factors to internal factors. I first consider broad environmental factors and then a variety of possible social influences. A hybrid social/cognitive model then precedes a discussion of potential cognitive underpinnings for language style. Internal factors such as motivation and temperament are considered, and finally, language-specific (biological) bases are discussed.

This chapter is necessarily somewhat speculative because causation ...

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