Working memory mediates the effects of gestational age at birth on expressive language development in children

Authors: Riva, Valentina; Cantiani, Chiara; Dionne, Ginette; Marini, Andrea; Mascheretti, Sara; Molteni, Massimo; Marino, Cecilia
Abstract: Objective: This study tested the role of temporary memory, measured by phonological short-term memory (pSTM) and verbal working memory (vWM), as a mediator of the effect of 3 putative risk factors (i.e., socioeconomic status, home literacy environment, birth gestational age) upon expressive and receptive language. Method: A community-based sample of 646 Italian children aged 6–11 years was assessed with a comprehensive battery of language and cognitive tests. A mediation analysis was used to examine whether memory mediates environmental/biological effects on language. Results: The results demonstrated a developmental cascade of effects, whereby the duration of pregnancy drives vWM functioning that, in turn, may affect expressive linguistic outcome Conclusion: Treatments focused on vWM, specifically to preterm children, may improve their language development, with enduring consequences on educational and psychosocial outcomes.
Document Type: Article de recherche
Issue Date: 6 April 2017
Open Access Date: 6 December 2017
Document version: AM
This document was published in: Neuropsychology, Vol. 31 (5), 475-485 (2017)
Philadelphia Clinical Neuropsychology Group
Alternative version: 10.1037/neu0000376
Collection:Articles publiés dans des revues avec comité de lecture

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