Language development and intervention

Language is the use of arbitrary sounds, with accepted referents, that can be arranged in different sequences to convey different meanings. Its basic components are phonology, semantics, syntax, and pragmatics. As children practice and master sounds (phonemes), meanings (semantics), and grammatical rules (syntax), they also learn rules and conventions governing conversation (pragmatics). Language learning is often divided into two main stages: prespeech and speech. In the speech stage, a child progresses from sounds to words, grammar, and pragmatics. In the prespeech stage, meaningful speech sounds are gradually developed; this stage lasts from birth to about the end of the first year or early part of the second and ends with the appearance of single words. Achievements in the prespeech stage include the appearance of the intention to communicate, evident in signals and gestures that have meaning from infant and caregiver; and the discovery of symbols--that things have names. The ability to use and understand words grows out of a complex series of interactions between infants and parents, including eye contact, directing attention through eye movements and gestures, and turn-taking. Language delays are an early sign that a child is not receiving and processing information properly. Underlying language and communication problems appear to be major factors in reading disorders, behavior disorders, and learning disabilities. Of the 35% U.S. children who enter kindergarten unprepared to learn, most lack the necessary language skills to participate fully in school. Some of the causes of speech or language disorders are related to hearing loss, cerebral palsy and other neuromuscular disorders, severe head injury, stroke, viral diseases, mental retardation, certain drugs, physical impairments (e.g., cleft palate), voice abuse or misuse, and inadequate speech and language models. Frequently, the cause is unknown.

News items related to the topic: Language development and intervention

Kennedy Center Lectures on Development and Developmental Disabilities: "Grammar Markers and Other Speech and Language Phenotypes: New Twin Heritability Estimates at 4, 6, and 16 Years"
Kennedy Center Lectures on Development and Developmental Disabilities: "Grammar Markers and Other Speech and Language Phenotypes: New Twin Heritability Estimates at 4, 6, and 16 Years"

Clinical & Translational Research Lecture: "Team Science in the Study of Pregnancy-Related Infections"
Clinical & Translational Research Lecture: "Team Science in the Study of Pregnancy-Related Infections"

Clinical & Translational Research Lecture: "Managing the Risk of Language Delay for Preverbal Children with Autism and their Siblings"
Clinical & Translational Research Lecture: "Managing the Risk of Language Delay for Preverbal Children with Autism and their Siblings"

Clinical & Translational Research Lecture: "Multisensory Function and Associated Brain Networks: Theory, Development and Autism"
Clinical & Translational Research Lecture: "Multisensory Function and Associated Brain Networks: Theory, Development and Autism"

VKC researchers pioneer Down syndrome speech and learning interventions
VKC researchers at Peabody College are blazing new trails in language and learning programs designed to ensure that children with Down syndrome have the brightest possible futures.

Researchers explore links between grammar, rhythm
A child’s ability to distinguish musical rhythm is related to his or her capacity for understanding grammar, according to a recent study by Reyna Gordon, Ph.D., a research fellow in the Department of Otolaryngology and the Vanderbilt Kennedy Center.

Studies related to the topic: Language development and intervention

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Grants related to the topic: Language development and intervention

  • Interactive Specialization in Language Impairment
    PI: Booth, James
  • Phenotypic Specific Communication Intervention for Children with Down Syndrome
    PI: Kaiser, Ann
  • Comprehensive Communication Intervention for Minimally Verbal Children with Autism
    PI: Kaiser, Ann
  • EMT En Espanol: Caregiver-Implemented Language Intervention For Young Spanish-Speaking Children
    PI: Kaiser, Ann
  • An Efficacy Trial of Enhanced Milieu Teaching Language Intervention for Toddlers with Autism
    PI: Kaiser, Ann
  • An Efficacy Trial of J-EMT: Enhanced Milieu Teaching Language Intervention Plus Joint Attention, Engagement and Regulation Intervention for Toddlers with Autism
    PI: Kaiser, Ann

People related to the topic: Language development and intervention

JoAnne Bachorowski, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Psychology, College of Arts and Science

Amy Booth, Ph.D.
Professor of Psychology & Human Development

Stephen M. Camarata, Ph.D.
Professor of Hearing & Speech Sciences and Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences

Edward Conture, Ph.D.
Professor of Hearing and Speech Sciences Emeritus

David Dickinson, Ed.D.
Margaret Cowan Chair and Professor of Teacher Education, Department of Teaching and Learning; Associate Dean for Research and Strategic Planning

Melissa Duff, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Hearing & Speech Sciences

Reyna L. Gordon, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Otolaryngology and Psychology
Director, Music Cognition Lab
Associate Director, Program for Music, Mind and Society at Vanderbilt

Benjamin Hornsby, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Hearing and Speech Sciences

Ann P. Kaiser, Ph.D.
Susan Gray Chair in Education and Human Development; Professor of Special Education and Psychology

Sasha Key, Ph.D.
Research Associate Professor of Hearing & Speech Sciences and Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences; Associate Director, IDDRC Translational Neuroimaging Core C; Director, VKC Psychophysiology Lab

Miriam Lense, Ph.D.
Research Instructor in Otolaryngology

Sarika Peters, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Pediatrics and Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences

Megan Saylor, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Psychology and Human Development

C. Melanie Schuele, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Hearing and Speech Sciences

Tedra A. Walden, Ph.D.
Professor of Psychology and Human Development

Tiffany Woynaroski, Ph.D., CCC-SLP
Assistant Professor of Hearing & Speech Sciences

Paul J. Yoder, Ph.D.
Professor of Special Education

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