Language Development

Running Words Together: The science behind cross-cultural linguistics

While communication may be recognized as a universal phenomenon, distinctions—ranging from word-order to naming—undoubtedly remain as they help to define culture and develop language. Yet, little is understood about the similarities and differences in languages around the world. Recently, however, two studies have emerged that aid in our understanding of More

Baby Talk is Universal

A major function of speech is the communication of intentions. In everyday conversation between adults, intentions are conveyed through multiple channels, including the syntax and semantics of the language, but also through nonverbal vocal cues such as pitch, loudness, and rate of speech. The same thing occurs when we talk More

Internationally adopted children shed light on how babies learn language

Each year, about 40,000 children are adopted across national lines, primarily by families from North America and Western Europe. These joyful occasions mark the growth of new families and also provide the framework for a natural experiment in language development.  Although most are infants and toddlers, thousands of older children More

Kids Are the Champs at Learning Language

It’s a given that some kids are better than others at throwing a baseball or memorizing a Shakespearean soliloquy.  Whether it’s due to inherent talent or education, or some combination of both, might be open to question.  But there is one thing that all children are amazingly good at, no More