Short-term memory in children with Williams syndrome: A reduced contribution of lexical-semantic knowledge to word span

Stefano Vicari, Giovanni Carlesimo, Daniela Brizzolara, Grazia Pezzini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Williams syndrome (WS) is a genetic syndrome of abnormal neurodevelopment, characterised by a specific linguistic pattern. Comparing performances of WS subjects with those of normal children in a word span task, we found that WS subjects revealed normal phonological similarity and length effects but a reduced frequency effect. Our results suggest comparable phonological encoding mechanisms in WS and normal controls and, at the same time, it provides evidence for an impaired access to lexical-semantic knowledge in WS subjects. This dissociation fits well with the particular pattern of linguistic abilities of these subjects.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)919-925
Number of pages7
JournalNeuropsychologia
Volume34
Issue number9
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 1996

Keywords

  • Short-term memory
  • Williams syndrome
  • Working memory's mental retardation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Behavioral Neuroscience
  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology

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