CLDP Overview

The University of Kansas offers a specialized Ph.D. in Child Language focusing on the interdisciplinary academic preparation and research training of child-language specialists. The faculty represent a wide range of theoretical and methodological approaches to the study of language acquisition and language impairments in children. The content perspective is broad, encompassing possible genetic influences along the pathways to language acquisition and language impairments, theories of language, empirical methods of describing language and symptoms of language impairments, social and environmental influences, and the identification and remediation of atypical patterns of language acquisition.

Students in Child Language have available to them a rich variety of research tools and databases as well as the opportunity to participate in the Child Language Acquisition Studies Lab. They draw upon well-established research facilities and field sites in pursuing their own research. Seminars in child language, a weekly Proseminar, workshops on special issues in language acquisition and intervention, and research practica are regularly offered by university faculty and visiting scholars.

Additional instructional, research, and clinical experiences are provided by the Institute for Life Span Studies. Research sites and practica are provided by the Institute for Life Span Studies, the Language Acquisition Preschool, and the clinical and research facilities of the Speech-Language-Hearing Clinic. Funding resources include trainee support from a NIDCD T32 Training grant, research assistantships in labs of participating faculty, and graduate teaching assistantships. In addition, fellowships including Self FellowshipsHonors Fellowships, and Dissertation Fellowships are available through the Graduate School.

Students Study Four Areas:

  • Core theoretical and experimental work on language acquisition
  • Relevant methods and theories in linguistics and psycholinguistics
  • Theoretical perspectives on developmental psychology
  • The nature of disordered language development and methods and techniques for language intervention