The acquisition of a child’s first words is described as a process of gradual development from preverbal vocalisations to the first genuine words. In the prelinguistic stage, a child uses phonetically consistent forms that exhibit certain pragmatic and/or semantic characteristics of words. These characteristics have to be lined up for linguistic reference to occur. It is argued that the acquisition of word-use should not be viewed as a discontinuous step: there is a continuous line leading from phonetically consistent forms to genuine words, conceptual development being the driving and enabling source of this development.
How to Cite:
Gillis, S. and De Schutter, G., 1988. De Lange Weg Naar Het Eerste Woordgebruik. Psychologica Belgica, 28(2), pp.105–121. DOI: http://doi.org/10.5334/pb.780