J. Bruce Tomblin

J. Bruce Tomblin
University of Iowa | UI · Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders

Ph.D.

About

195
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Publications (195)
Preprint
Prior research suggests that real-time word recognition processes are stabilized in early childhood (Fernald et al., 2006). However, recent work suggests that development of these processes continues throughout adolescence (Huang & Snedeker, 2011; Rigler et al., 2015). This study aimed to investigate whether these developmental changes are based so...
Preprint
Classical psycholinguistics seeks a universal set of language processing mechanisms for all people. This relies on the “modal” listener: hearing, neurotypical, monolingual, young adults. Applied psycholinguistics then characterizes differences in terms of their deviation from modal. This approach mirrors naturalist philosophies of health which pres...
Article
Words are fundamental to language, linking sound, articulation, and spelling to meaning and syntax; and lexical deficits are core to communicative disorders. Work in language acquisition commonly focuses on how lexical knowledge—knowledge of words’ sound patterns and meanings—is acquired. But lexical knowledge is insufficient to account for skilled...
Preprint
Full-text available
Language is the foundation of human social interaction, education, commerce, and mental health. The heritability underlying language is well-established, but our understanding of its genetic basis - and how it compares to that of more general cognitive functioning - remains unclear. To illuminate the language-specific contributions of rare and comm...
Article
Background There is extremely limited population-based research on social (pragmatic) communication disorder (SCD). Population-based samples have the potential to better characterize the SCD phenotype by mitigating confounds and biases that are typical of convenience and clinical samples. Aims The aims of this preliminary epidemiologic study were...
Preprint
Words are fundamental to language, linking sound, articulation and spelling to meaning and syntax; and lexical deficits are core to communicative disorders. Work in language acquisition commonly asks how lexical knowledge – the sound pattern and meaning of words – is acquired. This is insufficient to account for skilled behavior. Sophisticated real...
Article
Full-text available
Developmental Language Disorder (DLD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by difficulty learning and using language, and this difficulty cannot be attributed to other developmental conditions. The aim of the current study was to examine structural differences in dorsal and ventral language pathways between adolescents and young adults wi...
Article
Psychometric growth curve modeling techniques are used to describe a person’s latent ability and how that ability changes over time based on a specific measurement instrument. However, the same instrument cannot always be used over a period of time to measure that latent ability. This is often the case when measuring traits longitudinally in childr...
Article
The aim of the current study was to examine microstructural differences in white matter relevant to procedural and declarative memory between adolescents/young adults with and without Developmental Language Disorder (DLD) using diffusion tensor imaging (DTI). The findings showed atypical age-related changes in white matter structures in the cortico...
Article
Objectives: There are very limited data regarding the spoken language and academic outcomes of children with mild to severe hearing loss (HL) during the elementary school years, and the findings of these studies are inconsistent. None of these studies have examined the possible role of aided hearing in these outcomes. This study used a large cohor...
Article
Eight to 11% of children have a clinical disorder in oral language (Developmental Language Disorder, DLD). Language deficits in DLD can affect all levels of language and persist through adulthood. Word-level processing may be critical as words link phonology, orthography, syntax and semantics. Thus, a lexical deficit could cascade throughout langua...
Article
Objectives: To (1) identify the etiologies and risk factors of the patient cohort and determine the degree to which they reflected the incidence for children with hearing loss and (2) quantify practice management patterns in three catchment areas of the United States with available centers of excellence in pediatric hearing loss. Design: Medical...
Article
This study contrasted the early literacy outcomes of children who are hard of hearing (CHH) with children with normal hearing (CNH). At age 5, prereading skills of oral language, phonological processing, and print knowledge were examined in CHH (N = 180) and CNH (N = 80). The CHH had poorer oral language and phonological processing abilities than t...
Preprint
Eight to 11% of children have a clinical disorder in oral language (Developmental Language Disorder, DLD), with pervasive deficits in all levels of language that persist through adulthood. Word-level processing may be critical as words link phonology, orthography, syntax and semantics. Thus, a lexical deficit could cascade throughout language. Cogn...
Article
Full-text available
The authors tested the hypothesis that children with cochlear implants (CIs) experience domain-general deficits in sequential learning. Twenty children with CIs and 40 children with normal hearing (NH) participated. Participants completed a serial reaction time task that measured implicit sequential learning. During random sequence phases, the CI g...
Data
Appendix S2. Background document, with the statements for round 2.
Data
Appendix S1. Background document, with the statements for round 1.
Data
Appendix S4. Report showing quantitative and qualitative responses to Round 1 statements.
Data
Appendix S3. Relationship between Round 2 statements and final statements reported in Results section.
Data
Appendix S5. Report showing quantitative and qualitative responses to Round 2 statements.
Article
Purpose: This study investigates the production of voiceless alveolar and postalveolar fricatives and affricates by bilingual and monolingual children with hearing loss who use cochlear implants (CIs) and their peers with normal hearing (NH). Method: Fifty-four children participated in our study, including 12 Spanish-English bilingual CI users (...
Article
Full-text available
Background: A substantial amount of work has examined language abilities in young children with specific language impairment (SLI); however, our understanding of the developmental trajectory of language impairment is limited. Along with studying the behavioral changes that occur across development, it is important to examine the neural indices of l...
Article
Full-text available
Delayed or impaired language development is a common developmental concern, yet there is little agreement about the criteria used to identify and classify language impairments in children. Children's language difficulties are at the interface between education, medicine and the allied professions, who may all adopt different approaches to conceptua...
Article
Full-text available
Much of our current knowledge regarding the association of FOXP2 with speech and language development comes from singleton and small family studies where a small number of rare variants have been identified. However, neither genome-wide nor gene-specific studies have provided evidence that common polymorphisms in the gene contribute to individual d...
Article
The primary purpose of the epilogue article is to synthesize the key findings from the Outcomes of Children with Hearing Loss (OCHL) study by presenting a set of 10 major conclusions. The conclusion statements provide a concise summary of the main results related to children's auditory and language outcomes and factors identified as moderators of t...
Article
In this brief afterword, we discuss the challenges and lessons learned in the process of implementing a multisite, longitudinal study. Some of the lessons learned by the research team are shared regarding research design and analysis, strategies implemented to reduce threats to validity, and techniques used to promote teamwork and collaboration acr...
Article
This study investigated the developmental time course of spoken word recognition in older children using eye tracking to assess how the real-time processing dynamics of word recognition change over development. We found that 9-year-olds were slower to activate the target words and showed more early competition from competitor words than 16-year-old...
Article
The aim was to explore whether genetic variation in the dopaminergic system is associated with procedural learning and the corticostriatal pathways in individuals with developmental language impairment (DLI). We viewed these two systems as endophenotypes and hypothesised that they would be more sensitive indicators of genetic effects than the langu...
Article
Objectives: The primary objective of this article was to describe recruitment, data collection, and methods for a longitudinal, multicenter study involving children with bilateral mild to severe hearing loss. The goals of this research program were to characterize the developmental outcomes of children with mild to severe bilateral hearing loss dur...
Article
The landscape of service provision for young children with hearing loss has shifted in recent years as a result of newborn hearing screening and the early provision of interventions, including hearing technologies. It is expected that early service provision will minimize or prevent linguistic delays that typically accompany untreated permanent chi...
Article
Objectives: This study examined the language outcomes of children with mild to severe hearing loss during the preschool years. The longitudinal design was leveraged to test whether language growth trajectories were associated with degree of hearing loss and whether aided hearing influenced language growth in a systematic manner. The study also exp...
Article
Although there is considerable evidence that individual differences in language development are highly heritable, there have been few genome-wide scans to locate genes associated with the trait. Previous analyses of language impairment have yielded replicable evidence for linkage to regions on chromosomes 16q, 19q, 13q (within lab), and at 13q (bet...
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Full-text available
Individual differences in vocabulary development may affect academic or social opportunities. It has been proposed that individual differences in word reading could affect the rate of vocabulary growth, mediated by the amount of reading experience, a process refereed to as a Matthew effect (Stanovich, 1986). In the current study, assessments of wri...
Article
In the companion papers this issue we presented the value of research on comorbidity, particularly in complex developmental disorders where the identification of etiology is challenging. As we will document below, Language Impairment (SLI) and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) have been shown to co-occur in a number of studies, and th...
Article
Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a common developmental disorder often associated with other developmental disorders including speech, language, and reading disorders. Here we review the principal features of ADHD and current diagnostic standards for the disorder. We outline the ADHD subtypes, which are based upon the dimensions o...
Article
The aim of the current study was to examine different aspects of procedural memory in young adults who varied with regard to their language abilities. We selected a sample of procedural memory tasks, each of which represented a unique type of procedural learning, and has been linked, at least partially, to the functionality of the corticostriatal s...
Article
Full-text available
Background: The term 'specific language impairment' (SLI), in use since the 1980s, describes children with language impairment whose cognitive skills are within normal limits where there is no identifiable reason for the language impairment. SLI is determined by applying exclusionary criteria, so that it is defined by what it is not rather than by...
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Full-text available
Background There is no agreed terminology for describing childhood language problems. In this special issue Reilly et al. and Bishop review the history of the most widely used label, ‘specific language impairment’ (SLI), and discuss the pros and cons of various terms. Commentators from a range of backgrounds, in terms of both discipline and geograp...
Article
When longitudinal studies are performed to investigate the growth of traits in children, the measurement tool being used to quantify the trait may need to change as the subjects' age throughout the study. Changing the measurement tool at some point in the longitudinal study makes the analysis of that growth challenging which, in turn, makes it diff...
Article
Importance Hearing loss (HL) in children can be deleterious to their speech and language development. The standard of practice has been early provision of hearing aids (HAs) to moderate these effects; however, there have been few empirical studies evaluating the effectiveness of this practice on speech and language development among children with...
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Full-text available
Being able to track dependencies between syntactic elements separated by other constituents is crucial for language acquisition and processing (e.g., in subject-noun/verb agreement). Although long assumed to require language-specific machinery, research on statistical learning has suggested that domain-general mechanisms may support the acquisition...
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Full-text available
Purpose: The authors examined speech perception deficits associated with individual differences in language ability, contrasting auditory, phonological, or lexical accounts by asking whether lexical competition is differentially sensitive to fine-grained acoustic variation. Method: Adolescents with a range of language abilities (N = 74, includin...
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Full-text available
Reading disability (RD) and language impairment (LI) are common neurodevelopmental disorders with moderately strong genetic components and lifelong implications. RD and LI are marked by unexpected difficulty acquiring and processing written and verbal language, respectively, despite adequate opportunity and instruction. RD and LI—and their associat...
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Full-text available
Te studies discussed in this section of the chapter (Nippold et al., 2008, 2009) indicate that adolescents with a history of SLI or NLI, diagnosed in kindergarten, continued to show defcits in syntactic development, as measured by standardized testing and spoken language samples elicited in the expository genre. Although exceptions were observed wh...
Article
Few studies have examined the long-term effect of age at implantation on outcomes using multiple data points in children with cochlear implants. The goal of this study was to determine whether age at implantation has a significant, lasting impact on speech perception, language, and reading performance for children with prelingual hearing loss. A li...
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Full-text available
Though much is known about how words are recognized, little research has focused on how a degraded signal affects the fine-grained temporal aspects of real-time word recognition. The perception of degraded speech was examined in two populations with the goal of describing the time course of word recognition and lexical competition. Thirty-three pos...
Article
Developmental Language Impairment (DLI) is a neurodevelopmental disorder affecting 12% to 14% of the school-age children in the United States. While substantial studies have shown a wide range of linguistic and non-linguistic difficulty in individuals with DLI, very little is known about the neuroanatomical mechanisms underlying this disorder. In t...
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Full-text available
Language impairment (LI) and reading disability (RD) are common pediatric neurobehavioral disorders that frequently co-occur, suggesting they share etiological determinants. Recently, our group identified prenatal nicotine exposure as a factor for RD and poor reading performance. Using smoking questionnaire and language data from the Avon Longitudi...
Data
Distribution of covariates among smoking groups. Values are either percentages or means (SD). *Indicates χ2 two-tailed p-value <0.05 from univariate analyses of each covariate and prenatal nicotine exposure outcome. **Indicates ANOVA p-value <0.05 from comparison of each covariate and prenatal nicotine exposure outcome. (DOC)
Data
Comparison of those included in analyses and the overall ALSPAC cohort. Data are presented as either percentages or mean (SD). (DOC)
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Full-text available
This study investigated the development of tense markers (e.g., past tense –ed) in children with cochlear implants (CIs) over a 3-year span. Nine children who received CIs before 30 months of age participated in this study at three, four, and five years postimplantation. Nine typical 3-, 4-, and 5-year- olds served as control groups. All children p...
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Full-text available
The long-term educational/vocational, affiliation, and quality-of-life outcomes of the first and second cohorts of children with bilateral, profound hearing loss who received cochlear implants under a large National Institutes of Health-funded study was investigated in 41 of 61 eligible participants. Educational and vocational outcomes were collect...
Article
The aim of the study was to examine reinforcement learning (RL) in young adults with developmental language impairment (DLI) within the context of a neurocomputational model of the basal ganglia-dopamine system (Frank, Seeberger, & O'Reilly, 2004). Two groups of young adults, one with DLI and the other without, were recruited. A probabilistic selec...
Article
This paper serves to provide a background for the topic of comorbidity than extends through this issue. Comorbidity is common within developmental disorders. It is shown that there are many possible reasons for comorbidity. Some of these can be viewed as artifacts as simple as chance occurrence or because of the way that the research participants w...
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Full-text available
Purpose: To document the epidemiological characteristics of a group of children who are hard of hearing, identify individual predictor variables for timely follow-up after a failed newborn hearing screening, and identify barriers to follow-up encountered by families. Method: The authors used an accelerated longitudinal design to investigate outc...
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Full-text available
Inspired by the localization, on 15q21.2 of the CYP19A1 gene in the linkage region of speech and language disorders, and a rare translocation in a dyslexic individual that was brought to our attention, we conducted a series of studies on the properties of CYP19A1 as a candidate gene for dyslexia and related conditions. The aromatase enzyme is a mem...
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Full-text available
Some children demonstrate adequate or better reading achievement in early school grades, but fall significantly behind their peers in later grades. These children are often referred to as late-emerging poor readers. In this study, we investigated the prevalence and heterogeneity of these poor readers. We also examined the early language and nonverb...
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Full-text available
Prior work (Guo, Owen, & Tomblin, 2010) has shown that at the group level, auxiliary is production by young English-speaking children was symmetrical across lexical noun and pronominal subjects. Individual data did not uniformly reflect these patterns. On the basis of the framework of the gradual morphosyntactic learning (GML) hypothesis, the autho...
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Full-text available
The Procedural Deficit Hypothesis (PDH) posits that Specific Language Impairment (SLI) can be largely explained by abnormalities of brain structures that subserve procedural memory. The PDH predicts impairments of procedural memory itself, and that such impairments underlie the grammatical deficits observed in the disorder. Previous studies have in...
Article
There has been a long-standing interest in the relationship between specific language impairment (SLI) and autism spectrum disorder (ASD). In the last decade Tager-Flusberg and colleagues have proposed that this relationship consists of a partial overlap between the two. Therefore, among children with ASD there exists a subgroup who have SLI and AS...
Article
Studies on specific language impairments (SLI) have demonstrated that SLI aggregate in families. This may be due to the presence of prenatal and postnatal features of a shared environment, such as parental smoking, that has been associated with lowered cognitive and language outcomes in children of smokers. This study explored the relationship betw...
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Full-text available
In this study, the authors tested the unique checking constraint (UCC) hypothesis and the usage-based approach concerning why young children variably use tense and agreement morphemes in obligatory contexts by examining the effect of subject types on the production of auxiliary is. Twenty typically developing 3-year-olds were included in this study...
Article
The purpose of this feasibility study was to evaluate whether the use of a shorter-length cochlear implant (10 mm) on one ear and a standard electrode (24 mm) on the contralateral ear is a viable bilateral option for children with profound bilateral sensorineural hearing loss. A secondary purpose of this study was to determine whether the ear with...
Article
Brief tonal stimuli and spoken sentences were utilized to examine whether adolescents (aged 14;3-18;1) with specific language impairments (SLI) exhibit atypical neural activity for rapid auditory processing of non-linguistic stimuli and linguistic processing of verb-agreement and semantic constraints. Further, we examined whether the behavioral and...
Article
Technological advances in the last 15 years have resulted in earlier identification of children with mild and moderate hearing loss. Little is known about the impact of early provision of amplification on the development of prosodic speech characteristics such as fundamental frequency (F0). This study aims to address that gap. Children enter this s...