ABC-Kb: A Knowledge base supporting the Assessment of language impairment in Bilingual Children

About 5 to 7% of all children have a language impairment1. Their language acquisition is severely hampered, mostly at the level of sound articulation, word formation and/or sentence building. Diagnosticians (speech language therapists and clinical linguists) face the challenge of diagnosing children as young as possible (2-4 years old), also when their home language (HL) is not Dutch. Their achievements on standard (Dutch) language tests will not be reliable indicators for a language impairment (LI). The earlier a LI is recognized, the better, so there is no time to wait until the children master Dutch well enough to be tested by means of Dutch tests. Since a language impairment is a neurological condition and not a language-specific problem, bilingual children with a language impairment encounter problems in both languages. If diagnosticians had access to information on the language development in the HL of these children, this would be tremendously helpful in the diagnostic process.
This project aims to develop a knowledge base (KB) -in a co-creation design process involving an applied linguistics and computer science student- This KB will collect relevant information on the specificities of 60 different home languages (normal and atypical language development), and on contrastive analyses of any of these languages with Dutch. To this end, we leverage an existing wiki, with content provided by students of the Applied Linguistics MA-programme.

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