For the Curious Mind: What Do Babies Know About Language? with Dr. Catherine Anderson

Presented on: Thursday, March 28th at 12:00 PM EDT

For The Curious Mind

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This session is entitled What Do Babies Know About Language? (And how can we know what they know?) with Dr. Catherine Anderson, Assistant Professor, Linguistics and Languages Most children speak their first word around age one, but babies know a great deal about their language before they start to speak. In this short talk Dr. Anderson will show how we can draw conclusions about infants’ language knowledge by observing their behaviour in carefully-designed experiments. The results reveal that babies are already learning their native language even before birth! Dr. Catherine Anderson '98 is a Teaching Professor in the Department of Linguistics and Languages. She completed her (Hons) B.A. at McMaster before receiving her Ph.D. in Linguistics from Northwestern University. She teaches classes in Introductory Linguistics, Psycholinguistics, and Child Language Acquisition, and is the author of the new, free, open-access eBook, Essentials of Linguistics. Her ten-year-old twins cheerfully endured the occasional language acquisition experiment in their first few years of life.