Preliminary study of the prevalence of speech and language difficulties in young offenders

BRYAN, Karen (2004). Preliminary study of the prevalence of speech and language difficulties in young offenders. International Journal of Language and Communication Disorders, 39 (3), 391-400.

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Link to published version:: 10.1080/13682820410001666376


Background: There is no systematic surveys of the UK prison population, but data from several sources suggest that a significant number of prisoners might have limitations in their speech, language and communication abilities.

Aim: To examine the hypothesis that compared with the general population, a significantly larger number of the prison population has speech, language and communication difficulties.

Method and Procedures: A survey of 10% of the young offenders within one young offender's institution was conducted. Tests of naming, picture description, grammatical competency and comprehension were used. Outcomes and Results: Forty-three per cent of participants scored at a level significantly lower than the limits acceptable for their age on the Boston Naming Test; 73% scored significantly below the acceptable limits for their age on grammatical competency; 23% scored signifcantly below the acceptable limits for their age on language comprehension; 47% of participants received more than one rating of moderate impairment on picture description. Conclusion: It was confirmed that high levels of speech, language and communication difficulties are found among the young offender population. The implications for the management of young offender, the limitations of the study and indications for further research are discussed.

Item Type: Article
Research Institute, Centre or Group: Centre for Health and Social Care Research
Identification Number: 10.1080/13682820410001666376
Depositing User: Carole Harris
Date Deposited: 04 Feb 2013 10:37
Last Modified: 04 Feb 2013 10:37

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