Notice: In-Person Research Suspended Due to COVID-19

Due to the novel coronavirus pandemic, in-person research has been suspended until further notice. The 2020 Science + Language Summer Camp is cancelled.

We are now conducting some of our studies online. Please visit our Current Studies page for more information.

For Parents

Can my child participate in your studies?

Probably! The characteristics of children for our studies change with each question we are asking. We typically study the language development of children who are between 3 and 9. Some of our studies require that your child’s primary language is English, but other studies we do are specifically looking at children who speak multiple languages. Please let us know what languages your child speaks when you contact us. We are especially interested in children who have been diagnosed with a speech or language impairment or who receive assistance with speech, language, reading, or writing in school. Find out more about our current studies or contact us if you are interested in participating in our research projects.


Do we have to come to the UD STAR Campus?

Exterior photos at dusk of the Health Sciences Complex (HSC) on the Science, Technology, and Advanced Research (STAR) campus.For most of our studies, we can travel to you or meet with you virtually, using Zoom and other secure software.

We recruit children from across the state of Delaware, Eastern Maryland, Southern New Jersey, and Southeastern Pennsylvania. We meet with families in community centers, libraries, schools, daycare centers, and other similar locations. Whenever possible, we are happy to work with you to find a location that is convenient for your family!

For some studies, we have to see families at UD. These studies are equipment intensive or require a special recording setup. It’s easy to get to the the Tower at STAR via state routes or I-95, and there is ample visitor parking.

What if I don’t have the technology to participate online?

We can loan you equipment! If you are interested in one of our online studies, please contact us to learn more. We are happy to help you troubleshoot any technology issues you may have. Our goal is to make participation possible for any family with an eligible child.

What will happen when we come to the lab?

Typically the first day is spent making sure that you and your child are comfortable in the lab. We always begin with some paperwork and talk to you about what we will be doing.  Once you agree for your child to participate in the study we will usually go into a testing room. Parents and siblings can wait in an adjacent waiting room, or watch and listen through video conference software. In our research studies we ask children to do a variety of things.  We will usually play for awhile and listen to how your child talks. Then we will give the child some language tests – kids are asked to describe a series of photographs or point to particular pictures. Sometimes we ask children to watch several short puppet shows or videos and then tell us what they see. Other times children will play hiding and finding games, repeat silly words, and look at lots of picture books.