Age, Working Memory, Figurative Language Type, and Reading Ability

Constance Dean Qualls, Joyce L. Harris
2003 American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology  
This study investigated the cognitive and linguistic factors presumed to be associated with adult comprehension of figurative language, including age, working memory (WM), figurative language type, and reading comprehension (RC). Forty younger (M = 22 years) and 40 older (M = 63 years) healthy African American adults completed WM and reading tasks, and the 60-item forced-choice multiplecategory (20 idioms, 20 metaphors, and 20 metonyms) Figurative Language Comprehension Test. After controlling
more » ... After controlling for WM and RC, the older adults outperformed the younger adults on idioms and metonyms. Metaphor comprehension was comparable between the groups. Findings demonstrate that WM and RC underlie adults' comprehension of figurative language and should be considered when interpreting performance on tests assessing figurative language competence in this population. Key Words: figurative language, language comprehension, African American adults, working memory, metaphor in aging Downloaded From: http://ajslp.pubs.asha.org/ by a University of Texas, Austin User on 05/08/2015 Terms of Use: http://pubs.asha.org/ss/Rights_and_Permissions.aspx Downloaded From: http://ajslp.pubs.asha.org/ by a University of Texas, Austin User on 05/08/2015 Terms of Use: http://pubs.asha.org/ss/Rights_and_Permissions.aspx
doi:10.1044/1058-0360(2003/055) pmid:12680816 fatcat:u4mmxazskbdapfmthwssu3e2cq