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Narrative production in monolingual and bilingual children with specific language impairment

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  09 December 2015

Aristotle University of Thessaloniki and University of Reading
Aristotle University of Thessaloniki
Aristotle University of Thessaloniki
ADDRESS FOR CORRESPONDENCE Ianthi Maria Tsimpli, School of English, Department of Theoretical and Applied Linguistics, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Thessaloniki 54124, Greece. E-mail: or


The aim of this study was to identify potential clinical markers of specific language impairment (SLI) in bilingual children with SLI by using the Greek version of the Multilingual Assessment Instrument for Narratives. Twenty-one Greek-speaking monolingual and 15 bilingual children with SLI participated, along with monolingual (N = 21) and bilingual (N = 15) age-matched children with typical development. Results showed differences between typically development children and children with SLI in microstructure, while bilingual children with SLI were found to attain similar levels of performance, and even to outperform monolingual children with SLI, in macrostructure. It is suggested that the retelling coding scheme could permit differential diagnosis of SLI among bilingual children within the scope of narrative assessment.

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