The Competition Model and Language Disorders: Nora Presson and Brian MacWhinney
To understand language disorders, we need to contrast disordered language processing with normal language processing. In one sense, this is easy to do. We see that people with language disorders struggle with articulation, lexical access, syntactic structure, comprehension, and other language functions. But simply observing these behavioral differences is not enough. To understand the dynamics of communication disorders we need to articulate a processing model that explains in mechanistic terms how and why disordered processing differs from normal processing. Moreover, because communication abilities continue to develop throughout the life span, the model must also consider properties of language acquisition.