Current Studies

The participants in our studies consist of parent and child volunteers who graciously offer their time and assistance. If you choose to participate, private visits to our lab will be scheduled at times that are convenient for you. Our researchers are committed to making your visit a pleasant and fun learning experience!

We invite you to look around our website. If you have a baby under 24 months of age and are interested in participating in one of our studies, feel free to contact us by phone or email or complete our convenient online form and will will contact you. We look forward to hearing from you!


IMG_4869.JPG

Optimizing Information Processing in Infants Who Have a Relative with Language Impairment, Dyslexia, ASD or ADHD

EEG/ERP, Eye-tracker, and Behavioral Measures

Participants: 4-18 month olds who have a parent or sibling who has been diagnosed with speech/language disorder, reading disorder, Autism Spectrum Disorder or Attention Deficit/ Hyperactivity Disorder

Does auditory training during the first year of life help infants become more efficient at processing the sounds most important for speech and language development? 

Previous research in our lab has shown that infants who are born into a family with a history of language-based learning problems often process sounds differently from children who do not have a relative with such difficulties. Thus, they are at higher risk of having language-learning deficits themselves. Nonetheless, a longitudinal study completed in our lab demonstrated that early auditory training had a positive impact on the accuracy and speed of discrimination of key acoustic cues that are critical for setting up language and ongoing language development. We are studying how this early listening experience might support and enhance acoustic processing for infants in these higher risk categories, thus optimizing later language outcomes.


Spontaneous Sleep in Infants       

EEG/ERP and Behavioral Measures

Participants:  3 - 9 month olds

What’s happening in your child’s brain while he or she sleeps?  How is that different from your (adult) brain while you sleep?  How do these brain waves mature over time? 

The purpose of our study is to measure infant brain wave patterns during natural sleep (naptime) using electroencephalogram (EEG) at 3.5 and 6.5 months of age.  Our objective is to characterize the brain waves occurring in infants during natural sleep, examine how different areas of the brain communicate with one another, and determine if the brainwave patterns identified are associated with behavioral measures, such as temperament, motor, and early cognitive skills.


Complex Auditory Brainstem Processing in Early Development

cABR and Behavioral Measures

Participants:  3 - 24 month olds

How do the brain’s peripheral auditory processing networks develop during infancy, and how are they related to emerging language skills?

The purpose of this study is to help us characterize the developmental trajectory of brainstem responses to speech and speech-in-noise over the first two years of life by measuring auditory brainstem responses (ABRs) via several electrodes placed on the scalp as an earpiece provides auditory stimuli.  From this study we hope to delineate the relevance of brainstem measures to emerging speech and language behaviors.


Dynamic Brain Development: A Resting-State fMRI Study

MRI combined with EEG/ERP and Behavioral Measures

Participants:  6 month olds

How can experiences change brain functions and emerging behaviors in infants? Experience-induced plasticity is a key to successful learning during development. 

This project primarily aims to delineate the effect of short-term auditory exposure on functional brain networks, particularly those involved in auditory processing, in infants.  We combine naturally sleeping MRI with EEG/ERP and behavioral measures.  This approach allows us to deepen our understanding of the development of brain-behavior relationships in infants.