Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in School Psychology


School Psychology



First Advisor

Susan Brady


The primary aim of this study was to explore the relationships between two oral language abilities, syntax/discourse and vocabulary knowledge, with oral narrative performance of kindergarten children from a middle-income population. The study also investigated whether demographic variables (i.e., age, mother’s education level, and father’s education level) accounted for variance in performance. Kindergarten students (n = 39) from two elementary schools were assessed on measures of receptive vocabulary, syntactic skill, and narrative performance. Results of negative binomial regressions hinted at an association between syntax/discourse and narrative ability, regardless of the inclusion of demographic variables. For this sample, students' vocabulary knowledge was not significantly associated with performance on the narrative measure. This study provides some support for focusing on discourse and syntax as areas for instruction and intervention. Implications for future research are discussed.



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