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Title:The Relationship of Young Children's Peer Group Status to Their Use of Communication Strategies
Author(s):Rosegrant, Teresa Jane
Department / Program:Education
Discipline:Education
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Degree:Ph.D.
Genre:Dissertation
Subject(s):Education, Early Childhood
Abstract:Problem. The purpose of this study was to investigate the communicative competence of preschool children by examining the relationship between their use of communication strategies and their high or low status within the peer group.
Research Questions. Three research questions guided this investigation: (1) Are peer status differences (high vs. low) among four-year-old children in a preschool setting related to their use of communication strategies in child-child interactions? (2) Do inappropriate communication strategy choices due to a lack of deference by a low status child to a high status child result in problematic situations or negative responses? (3) What adjustments in language use concerning deference of low status child to high status child exist within formal linguistic categories?
Procedure. The social status and communication strategies used by four-year-old preschool boys and girls were obtained through interviews and observations. The high or low peer status of children in the girls' and boys' groups was determined by an interview in which children ranked each other on social attributes (toughness, smartness, and niceness). The verbal data gained during observations of same-sex child-child interactions were categorized into communication strategies. Additionally, negative responses to the use of communication strategies and three linguistic categories (use of stress, mean length of interaction events and number of verbs) were obtained from the observations. Comparisons of both high and low status boys and girls were submitted to analysis of variance.
Findings. The results indicated that twelve of the twenty-seven communication strategies used by boys, were selected significantly more often by high status boys than by low status boys. Thirty communication strategies were used by girls but only one was used significantly more often by low status girls. A significant difference between high and low status boys was also found for three linguistic categories: use of stress, mean length of interaction and number of verbs used. A qualitative analysis of the boys' group indicated that negative responses resulted from the low status boys' use of communication strategies associated with high status. This investigation offered insights into the communicative competence of preschool children.
Issue Date:1980
Type:Text
Language:English
Description:115 p.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1980.
URI:http://hdl.handle.net/2142/65965
Other Identifier(s):(UMI)AAI8026581
Date Available in IDEALS:2014-12-12
Date Deposited:1980


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