Reading and Writing

, Volume 8, Issue 1, pp 61–72 | Cite as

An exploratory study of morphological errors in children's written stories



This exploratory study provides descriptive information about the use of morphologically complex words in the story writing of second and third graders, some with and some without learning disabilities (LD). The purpose was to determine how commonly and how accurately children used inflections, derivations, and compound words spontaneously in their writing. The results showed significant differences by grade level and group (LD and Non-LD) in the frequency with which morphologically complex words are used. The LD second graders were less accurate than their peers in their use of morphological markers; both LD and Non-LD third graders had high levels of accuracy. In addition, examination of morphological markers that children use in written but nor oral language showed growth from second to third grade. The results suggest that the second and third grades may be a transitional period, in which the children are consolidating their knowledge of inflected forms and just beginning to use derived forms in their spontaneous writing. Reasons that children might make morphological errors in writing and problems that might be addressed in future studies are discussed.

Key words

Learning disabilities Morphological errors Second and third graders Story writing 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Northwestern UniversityEvanstonUSA

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