Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Communication Sciences & Disorders


The purpose of this study was to investigate the relationship between changes in oral stereognostic ability and changes in articulation proficiency in elementary-school children. The subjects for this investigation were seventeen normal-speaking children, with a mean age of seven years four months, and seventeen articulatory- defective children, with a mean age of seven years three months.

All of the subjects were administered the Arizona Articulation Proficiency Scale: Revised (AAPS) (Fudala, 1970) and a test of oral stereognosis twice in the 1977 school-year--both prior and subsequent to a period of articulation treatment with the speech-defective group. The interval between the measures was eight weeks.

The oral stereognostic task consisted of the subject identifying ten geometric shapes placed successively in his mouth by pointing to corresponding shapes presented visually before him.

Results of the study did not support former research which found a relationship between oral stereognostic ability and articulation proficiency.

The experiment failed to demonstrate that an improvement in oral stereognostic ability accompanied the refinement of articulation skills which occurred in the speech-defective group. A significant relationship was not found between oral stereognostic ability and severity of articulation defectiveness in either test situation in the speech-defective group. A moderate correlation was found between age, grade, and oral stereognosis in the pre-test situation; however, the results of the post-test failed to demonstrate such a relationship. The experiment failed to show any significant difference between sexes on either the task of oral stereognosis or on the AAPS within either the normal-speaking group or the speech-defective group, in either test situation. No significant difference was found between the pretest and post-test performance by the speech-defective subjects on the AAPS.

It could not be concluded from the results of this study that oral sensory perceptual processes develop as a result of articulation refinement. However, the low correlation observed between pre-test and post-test oral stereognostic performance by the normal-speaking subjects and speech-defective subjects raises question as to whether the oral stereognostic measure used in this study was a reliable research tool. Therefore, further research, to identify the nature of the interactions which underlie oral sensory perception and to determine the function of oral stereognosis as a component of articulation, is recommended.