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Gestalt Language Processing

Gestalt Language Processing is a form of language acquisition, or development, that moves from whole, memorized phrases to single (and often isolated) words.


Predictable stages within this start with "gestalt-forms." These Gestalts may come from movies, videos, or anything of interest to the individual. At times, the production of these forms end with novel utterances (ASHA, 2023).


Why is Gestalt Language Processing important?

Predictable stages that start with "gestalt-forms", or otherwise known as multi-words, while ending with a production of novel utterances encompasses Gestalt Language Acquisition. 

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As noted by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA), the following process is typical for how one produces this type of acquisition (2023):

  • at first, children produce “chunks” or “gestalt form” (e.g., echolalic utterances), without distinction between individual words and without appreciation for internal syntactic structure

  • as children understand more about syntax and syntactic rules, they can analyze (break down) these “gestalt forms” and begin to recombine segments and words into spontaneous forms

  • eventually, the child is able to formulate creative, spontaneous utterances for communication purposes

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