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Date of Award


Document Type

Thesis - Pacific Access Restricted

Degree Name

Master of Science (M.S.)


Speech-Language Pathology

First Advisor

Michael Susca

First Committee Member

Robert Hanyak

Second Committee Member

Jeannene Ward-Lonergan


Word retrieval difficulties can affect individuals who have had strokes or head trauma (Goodglass & Wingfield, 1997) and to a lesser extent, typically aging adults. This can affect an individual's ability to name pictures accurately and quickly. Cues are used to help individuals with word retrieval difficulties in fmding specific words. Two commonly used cues are semantic and phonological cues. Semantic cues can be information about the word the person is trying to retrieve, such as its definition, and/or its functions. Phonological cues are usually the initial sound of a word that a person is attempting to retrieve. Previous research has suggested that both of these cues, in isolation, are effective in stimulating word retrieval during naming tasks (Li & Williams 1989; Stirnley & Noll 1991 ). However, research has not investigated the effects of combining these two cues during picture naming tasks. The current study observed participants under four different cueing conditions during a picture naming task with the Boston Naming Test.

The four conditions include a control group (received no cues), a semantically cued group (received a semantic cue before being asked to name a picture), a phonologically cued group (received a phonological cue before being asked to name a picture), and a semanticallyphonologically cued group (received a semantic and phonological cue before being asked to name a picture). Each group was compared on number of items correctly named and response times. The results indicated that there was no statistically significant difference between the groups with regard to number of items named. There was a statistically significant difference found between the groups with regards to response times. These findings are discussed and compared to previous research and current word retrieval theories.



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