Phonological development in some children does not follow the typical trajectory. This may affect their communication processes. The primary aim of this chapter is to characterize the phonological development of Spanish‐speaking children with phonological problems. The characterization is based on the Theory of Natural Phonology, which poses that children with phonological problems produce phonologically simplified words resulting from the application of strategies known as phonological simplification processes. Phonological development implies the progressive elimination of these strategies. It has been observed that children with phonological problems produce phonologically simplified words until advanced age. This chapter focuses on studies involving Chilean children with phonological problems, in an attempt to characterize their phonological performance. Overall, the point can be made that Chilean children with phonological problems have a trajectory of phonological development of their own, with phonological simplification processes equally affecting syllable structure and word structure. Also, these processes tend to consistently decrease with age at a steady rate. Once 5 years of age, however, processes tend to become more persistent and decrease becomes slower. They are also prone to have problems both with the phonological representation of words and lexical comprehension. Finally, they seem to be challenged by phonological awareness and grammar.
Part of the book: Advances in Speech-language Pathology