Pragmatics
The Vessel into which all
other components are
placed!
A Functionalist Model
Language Review

1 Definition of Language
– A socially shared code or conventional system
for representing concepts through the use of
arbitrary symbols and the combination of those
symbols. Bloom and Lahey

2. Perspectives of language
– 1. Components
– 2. Discourse
– 3. Receptive/Expressive
3. 4 views of language development
 4. Communication Circle
 5. Language Fan: Form/Content/Use

Components of Language
Pragmatics
 Phonology
 Semantics
 Syntax
 Metalinguistics
 Emergent Literacy
 Central Auditory Processing (CAP)

Pragmatics

Definition: study of the relationship between
language and the context that are basic to
an account of language understanding
– social use of language

It’s about COMMUNICATION
Pragmatic Concepts
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Sociolinguistic: Culture & Communication
Development: Begins with Cry- ends with the
death sigh
 Theorists
• 1. Dore
2. Halliday
• 3. Roth & Spekman 4. Prutting
• 5. Fey
6. Others
Pragmatics=Intentionality
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Speech Act and Development of Intentionality
• Perlocutionary
• Illocutionary (INTENTIONALITY) @ 6
months
• Locutionary (First Words
Development of Intentionality
Perlocutionary-Caregiver assigns
intentions to infant’s cry, smiles,
vocalizations, gestures
 Illocutionary-Infant begins to initiate
INTENTIONALITY through cry
differentiation, smiles, gestures
 Locutionary-Modality specific: Verbal
Language or Gestures (sign language)
 It’s a PIL,

– what’s a ILP, a LIP?
Theorists: Dore
Prag 3
Studied younger children developing
language
 Taxonomy appropriate for language
below MLU of 3 or through telegraphic
speech
 Taxonomy (p. 242)

Pragmatics: Halliday
Prag. 4
Halliday’s perspective: Language is
used to interact with others, regulate
their behavior and to fulfill speaker’s
needs by having a listener/s respond
appropriately
 Taxonomy Use: older children who are
verbal because it is multi-word
taxonomy
 Taxonomy

– similar to Dore’s except for Heuristic
Dore/Halliday Comparison
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Dore
Label
Repeat
Answer
Request Action
Request Answer
Calling
Protesting
Practice
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Halliday
Personal (that’interesting,
self-talk)

Imitating

Informative (got something
to tell you)
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Regulatory (do as I tell you)
 Interactional (initiation)
 Personal(withdrawal)
 Instrumental (I want)
 Imaginative (let’s pretend)
 Heiristic (why?)
Halliday’s Taxonony
Halliday observed Broad pragmatic
functions instead of individual utterance
functions as observed by Dore BUT
considerable similarity
 Emergence of Speech

• initially speech emerges to accompany action,
not to convey information
• attention is restricted to a single object and
action associated with it
• notes object relations or comments on the
event (recurrence)
Halliday’s Taxonomy, #2

Separated into 3 PHASES
– Phase I
• ages 9 months to 17 months
• initially speech emerges to accompany action,
not to convey information
• communicative functions
–
–
–
–
instrumental
regulatory
interactional
personal
Halliday’s Taxonomy
#3
– Phase II
• characterized by a generalization of the
previous functions into new broader functions
and by the disappearance of isomorphic forms
• two broad functions emerge
– mathetic general learning functions
» includes the Personal and Heuristic
– pragmatic involves needs satisfaction and control
» includes Instrumental and Regulatory functions
• at two-word level, child begins to use structure
independent of function
• in general:
Old Forms (constructions)-New Ideas
New Forms (generalization) - Old ideas
Halliday’s Taxonomy

#4
Phase III
– child attains adult-like functions
– attained by age 2
– ability to combine several language
functions within a single utterance
– -use of a lexicogrammatical (semantic/syntactic)
system makes in possible to fulfill
(perlocutionary) all necessary functions in a
discourse simultaneously
• ex: mommy, cookie hot -interactional,
description, inferential requesting
Pragmatics: Roth & Spekman
prag. 4
Taxonomy use: more comprehensive
 Taxonomy:

• Triangle with points of
» Communication Intention
» Presupposition
» Organization of Discourse
CI
P
OD
Communication Intention

Communication Intention
– Divided into Range and Form
• Range
– Preverbal
– Holophrases
– Multi-Word
• Form
– Gestural
– Gestural + Vocalization
– Verbal/ Sign Language
Communication Intention for Roth and Spekman
PREVERBAL
prag #5
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Preverbal Intentions
– Attention Seeking to self
– Attention seeking to events, others,
– Requesting
• objects
• Actions
• Information
– Protesting/Rejecting
– Responding/Acknowledging
– Informing
– Greeting (social)
Communication Intentions for Roth and Spekman
Holophrases

Holophrases
– Naming
– Commenting
– Request Objects
• Present
• Absent
– Requesting Information
– Responding
– Protesting/Rejecting
– Greetings
#7
Communication Intentions for Roth and Spekman
Multi-Word
#8
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Multiword
– Requesting Information
– Requesting Action
– Responding to Requests
– Stating or Commenting
– Regulating Conversational Behavior
– Other Performatives such as teasing,
warning sarcasm, humor, metaphors, etc
(metalinguistics)
Matrix Example
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Performatives  Examples
teasing
warning
sarcasm
humor
metaphors
Presupposition for Roth and Spekman
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Principle of Informativeness
 Three Aspects
– 1. Topic
• New/Old Information
• Needs of listener
– 2. Listener
• Conversational participants
• Type of language (register)
– 3. Cohesive Devices
• Anaphoric reference -use of pronouns
• Ellipsis
• Conjunctions
• Deictic terms (empty pronouns) this, that, these,
those
Organization of Discourse
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5 Aspects
– 1. Conversational Initiation
– 2. Turn Taking
• conversational speaking time
– 3. Staying on Topic OR Conversational
Maintenance
– 4. Conversational Repairs
– 5. Topic Termination
Conversational Repairs
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Linguistic Structure
– phonologic
poon--spoon
– morphologic he sleep--sleeps
– syntactic
cats--big cats
Linguistic Content
– repetition
– confirmation
– elaboration
Extralinguistic
– pitch change
– stress
– demonstration
Pragmatics’ Assignment Example

Organization of Discourse
 Form
 Range
– items
 Presupposiiton
 -listener
 - topic
 Organization of Discourse
 conversation initiation
 turn taking
 eye contact
 conversation repair
 conversation termination
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Examples
verbal
dyad
familiar:
initiated by conv. Part
example
part. Made eye contact
lasting about __second
repair example
Taxonomy GRID

Organization of
 Examples
Discourse
 Form
 Range
– items
 Presupposiiton
 -listener
 - topic
 Organization of
Discourse
 conversation initiation
 turn taking
 eye contact
 conversation repair
 conversation
termination
Communication Intentions
RANGE
Social
Informing/Commenting
Regulating
Conversational
Behavior
Negating/Protesting
Requesting Info
Requesting Action
Responding to Request
Heuristic
Used
Examples
Presupposition
New/Old Information
Conversational Participants
Register
Anaphoric reference
Ellipsis
Conjunctions
Deictic terms
Used
Examples
Organization Of Discourse
Initiation/Conservation
Conversation Maintenance
Turn Taking
Repair
(EXPAND)
Termination
Used
Examples
Prutting’s Pragmatic Taxonomy

Includes all of Roth and Spekman’s
– Communication Intention
– Presupposition
– Organization of Discourse

ADDS: Proxemics
–)
CI
OD
P
PROX
Proxemic’s Importance
“The eyes of men converse as much as their
tongues, with the advantage that the ocular
dialect needs no dictionary, but is understood
the world over,” Ralph Waldo Emerson
 Skills

– Nonlinguistic elements
• distance from a speaker,
• gaze
• touch
– Paralinguistic elements (fluency, rate,
intonation)
Fey’s Taxonomy
Assertive/ Responsive Matrix
 Definitions

– Conversational Assertiveness
• Definition: ability and/or willingness to take a
conversational turn when none has been
sloicited by a partner.
– Responsiveness• Definition: ability to comply with the speaker’s
range of intent.

Matrix
Fey’s Taxonomy: Assessment/ Intervention Implications
For Assessment: In a PBA determining
the child’s ability in both areas.
 For intervention: Using a
communication modality that
encourages both. Usually SLI children
are better at being “Responsive” than
“Assertive.”
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Reason: therapy usually reinforces
Responsiveness.
– Ex. Question/Answer
Pragmatics’ Questions
 1. Define pragmatics.
 2. How is pragmatics ‘tied to’ the 4 views of
language development?
 3. What is the Speech Act progression of
pragmatic development
 4. Why is pragmatics ‘central’ to language?
 5. Explain Dore’s taxonomy
 6. Explain Halliday’s taxonomy
 7. Explain Roth & Spekman’s taxonomy
 8. Explain Prutting’s taxonomy
 9. Explain Fey’s taxonomy
 10. What is the purpose of knowing these
taxonomies?
End of Lecture Notes
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Pragmatics