Le Normand Corpus

Marie-Thérèse Le Normand
Laboratoire de Psychopathologie et Processus de Santé
Université Paris Descartes


Participants: 7
Type of Study: clinical
Location: France
Media type: audio
DOI: doi:10.21415/T5P021

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Project Description

The children with Specific Language Impairment (SLI) and Epilepsy (EPI) involved in this corpora were participants in a larger project supported by L’Institut National de la Santé et de la Recherche Médicale (INSERM), Paris, investigating the language develop-ment of children with neurogenic disorders. This project may contribute to central issues in developmental psycholinguistics and neurolinguistics, particularly in the understanding of the cerebral involvement in the acquisition of language.

Exclusion criteria for SLI and EPI children were: premature birth, perinatal complications, evidence of obvious damage following a neurological examination, a diagnosed behavior problem, or other psychopathology. Inclusion criteria were: an Apgar score of 10 five minutes after birth, a nonverbal intellect score greater than 90 (MacCarthy, 1976; range: 95-126), intact hearing as assessed in an audiometric evaluation, native speaker of French and uninterrupted participation in the study.

EEG evidenced for both EPI children a clear-cut left temporal focus. MRI evidenced for Sofian a left temporal lesion, most probably dysplastic without destruction of paren-chyme. MRI evidenced no lesion for Benoît. PET scan revealed left temporal hypometab-olism for Sofian. No PET scan was available for Benoît.

The selection of language comprehension tasks included pointing (choosing which items in a set of pictures are named by the experimenter), and understanding of prepositions (positioning play figures; there were 18 requests to assess representation of space, quantity, partition and localization).

The linguistic production tasks included repetition of mono-, bi- and polysyllabic words spoken by the experimenter; naming of pictures of objects; lexical and morpholog-ical categories diversity as measured by the number of type and tokens uttered in a 20 min controlled play session. A JPEG photo of the setup is included with the data files. This is a form of narrative where the subject is asked to verbalize all manipulations and actions with dolls and objects in and around a doll house.


Normative data on the comprehension tasks are found in Chevrie-Muller, Simon and Decante (1981) for ages between 3 years, 9 months and 8 years, and normative data on the production tasks (lexical and morphological category diversity) are found in Le Normand (1997) for ages between 2 and 4.

The video and audio recording sessions lasted approximately 20 minutes and were conducted in the lab with mother or father using the same play Fisher-Price toys materials. All sessions were transcribed in accordance with the guidelines produced by the Codes for Human Analysis of Transcripts (CHAT) which is part of the Child Language Data Exchange system (CHILDES) (MacWhinney, 1995). The computerized transcripts were then compared with the original videotaped data by an independent transcriber in order to verify their accuracy. This process resulted in 97.0% inter-transcriber reliability. Any disagreements concerning the transcription were resolved by re-examination until consensus was reached.

Child with Apraxia

The file here is called consonantless.cha. This study investigated the production of Consonant Free Words (CFW) in three children with apraxia of speech (ASHA, 2007) speaking French as a native language. Their speech data were annotated with CHILDES tools integrating Phon and Praat in order to document their production at the segmental and suprasegmental level. Children have a good perception of consonant and a relatively complete prosodic hierarchy (timing slot, syllable, accentual phrase, intonational phrase). Their deficit concerns only the motor planning of the consonants providing evidence for three dissociations in phonological planning: (i) perception without production of consonants, (ii) production of vowels without consonants and (iii) consonant timing slot in the form of a glottal stop without oral articulatory gestures and challenging phonological account of early speech acquisition.


The children with Specific Language Impairment (SLI) and Epilepsy (EPI) involved in this corpora were participants in a larger project supported by L’Institut National de la Santé et de la Recherche Médicale (INSERM), Paris