Point, walk, talk: Links between three early milestones, from observation and parental report.
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Around their first birthdays, infants begin to point, walk, and talk. These abilities are appreciable both by researchers with strictly standardized criteria and caregivers with more relaxed notions of what each of these skills entails. Here, we compare the onsets of these skills and links among them across two data collection methods: observation and parental report. We examine pointing, walking, and talking in a sample of 44 infants studied longitudinally from 6 to 18 months. In this sample, links between pointing and vocabulary were tighter than those between walking and vocabulary, supporting a unified sociocommunicative growth account. Indeed, across several cross-sectional and longitudinal analyses, pointers had larger vocabularies than their nonpointing peers. In contrast to previous work, this did not hold for walkers' versus crawlers' vocabularies in our sample. Comparing across data sources, we find that reported and observed estimates of the growing vocabulary and of age of walk onset were closely correlated, while agreement between parents and researchers on pointing onset and talking onset was weaker. Taken together, these results support a developmental account in which gesture and language are intertwined aspects of early communication and symbolic thinking, whereas the shift from crawling to walking appears indistinct from age in its relation with language. We conclude that pointing, walking, and talking are on similar timelines yet distinct from one another, and discuss methodological and theoretical implications in the context of early development. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2019 APA, all rights reserved).
Published Version (Please cite this version)10.1037/dev0000738
Publication InfoMoore, Charlotte; Dailey, Shannon; Garrison, Hallie; Amatuni, Andrei; & Bergelson, Elika (2019). Point, walk, talk: Links between three early milestones, from observation and parental report. Developmental psychology, 55(8). pp. 1579-1593. 10.1037/dev0000738. Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10161/19712.
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Crandall Family Assistant Professor
Dr. Bergelson accepts PhD applicants through the Developmental and Cog/CogNeuro areas of P&N and the CNAP program.In my research, I try to understand the interplay of processes during language acquisition. In particular, I am interested in how word learning relates to other aspects of learning language (e.g. speech sound acquisition, grammar/morphology learning), and social/cognitive development more broadly (e.g. joint attention processes) in the first few
Shannon is a PhD student studying developmental psychology. She received her BA with honors in psychology from the University of Pennsylvania in 2015. She worked as lab manager on the SEEDLingS team at the University of Rochester and as the Bergelson Lab manager at Duke before entering the graduate program here, advised by Dr. Bergelson.
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