Child Directed Speech

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-       Slower, clearer pronounciation

-       More pauses

-       Higher pitched

-       Exaggerated intonation and stress

-       Repetition and partial repetition of the child's name

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-       Simple constructions

-       Frequent use of imperatives

-       High degree of repetition

-       Frequent questions

-       Use of personal names instead of pronouns (‘Mummy’ instead of ‘I’)

-        Repeated sentence frames

-        Absence of past tense

-       Large number of one word utterances

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-       Simpler, more restricted vocabulary

-       Diminutive forms (‘doggie’)

-       Concrete language

-       Fewer verbs, modifiers and function words

-       Frequent use of the child's name and absence of pronouns

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Gender Differences

Males: Wider vocabulary, ask more direct questions, more physical, less likely to understand the baby.

Female: Opposite of the male, more conversations.

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Effects of CDS

-       More accessible

-       Phonology: Retains attention

-       Questions: improves auxiliary verbs

-       Introduce conventions of conversation


-       Some argue baby talk interferes with language development because it provides children with an inarticulate/inaccurate portrayal of speech.

-       In cultures where adults do not use CDS children seem to acquire their native language at normal rates of development.

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