Sadutettu sanasto: puhutun kielen leksikaalinen diversiteetti arviointikohteena
This study analyses lexical diversity (sums of probabilities) in spoken narratives of L1 and L2 school age children (n = 99) and compares the results to the lexical diversity of written narratives of the group of comparison. The key research questions are: a) does the lexical diversity of the spoken narratives systematically differ from the lexical diversity of written narratives and b) does the lexical diversity of spoken narratives systematically differ depending on five individual variables: lexical skills, language proficiency, L1 , gender and age of the speaker? All the narratives are produced in Finnish in storytelling events during the spring semester of the 2d and 3rd school year. Sums of probabilities is an index of lexical diversity. It is based on widely used D (Malvern & Richards ) and can be used with texts that differ in length and genre.
The results reveal a weak but significant difference between the lexical diversity of spoken and written narratives and weak but complex correlations between the lexical diversity of spoken narratives and the proficiency level as well as the lexical skills of the child. However, there is no correlation or other appreciable connection between the lexical diversity and language background (L1 /L2 ), gender or the school grade of the child. In addition, in L2 group there is no connection between the lexical diversity and the length of residence in Finnish speaking environment or, between the lexical diversity and the specific language difficulties observed by their teacher, either. The results are discussed and compared with the individual differences in turns and turn-taking during the storytelling event tentatively.