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Child Language Program

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Child Language Graduate Program

The graduate program in child language offers the first specialized degree in this new area of study. The program crosses traditional academic boundaries to give students the theoretical, empirical, and methodological competence necessary to study basic and applied issues in language acquisition. This multidisciplinary program is a cooperative endeavor of faculty members from the Departments of Applied Behavioral Science, Linguistics, Psychology, and Speech-Language-Hearing: Sciences and Disorders.

Students study 4 areas:

  1. Core theoretical and experimental work on language acquisition,
  2. Relevant methods and theories in linguistics and psycholinguistics,
  3. Theoretical perspectives on developmental psychology, and
  4. The nature of disordered language development and methods and techniques for language intervention.

Each student is advised by a support committee of 3 faculty members. Enrollment in a proseminar in language acquisition is required of all students in addition to participation in research activities. Opportunities for individual research projects include the projects of participating faculty members and the research teams of the Schiefelbusch Institute for Life Span Studies, the Speech-Language-Hearing Clinic, and the clinical/research facilities of KU Medical Center.

Graduates are candidates for teaching and research positions, clinical positions providing service to communicatively disabled persons, and research work in business and governmental sectors.

The child language doctoral program reports to the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences in collaboration with participating departments. The 23-member faculty is drawn from the participating departments. The Institute for Life Span Studies provides additional instructional, research, and clinical experiences.

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