The language learning environments deaf children experience are heterogeneous, and often remarkably different from the experiences of hearing children. Some deaf children acquire a signed language from their deaf parents in much the same way that hearing children acquire spoken languages, though in a different modality. Many deaf children are at risk of language deprivation. This is because even with the best hearing interventions deaf children often have restricted or no access to spoken language, and their parents often do not know a sign language. Our lab research looks at how these diverse language learning environments shape language acquisition and development. We ask questions like:
How does modality affect language acquisition and processing?
How does language deprivation affect language acquisition and processing?
How do early language experiences shape development?