Considerable attention has been paid to such speech defects of childhood as stuttering and dyslalia resulting from cleft palate and other physical malformations. On the other hand, relatively little attention has been given to articulatory defects in children, although such defects are seen frequently in speech clinics. The children often exhibit disorders of articulation so extreme as to cause their speech to be practically unintelligible, and yet they show no obvious physical defect which might account for the speech distortion. In fact, they appear to be alert, to have histories of normal development and to comprehend spoken language. The only abnormality which they present is a failure of good speech to develop. The present study is an investigation of the factor or factors which are associated with this distorted or delayed speech in young children.
The general problem may be approached from a number of points of view. First, the