The Language Acquisition Lab is a research lab in the Spanish, Italian, and Portuguese Department at Penn State. The lab is directed by Dr. Karen Miller and our research examines language development in children between 2 – 7 years of age.
The current focus of our research is the acquisition of linguistic and extralinguistic variation and how variable input and also how inconsistent input affects the acquisition of the target grammar. Much of our work studies acquisition in different varieties of Spanish, although we have projects that have looked at acquisition of variation in English and Fering. Currently we are studying language acquisition in Chilean, Mexican, Dominican, Andalusian, Argentine, and Puerto Rican Spanish. In addition to experimental studies, we are also collecting and transcribing naturalistic speech data from children and their caregivers – in many of these Spanish dialects – that will eventually be made available online.