How do we learn to say new words? This is a question Allison Gladfelter is trying to solve. As an assistant professor of Allied Health and Communications Disorders at Northern Illinois University, Gladfelter is an expert in the field of language acquisition in children with and without language impairments. Her research explores factors that influence how children with autism spectrum disorder and specific language impairment learn new words, with the ultimate goal of developing more evidence-based language interventions.
Gladfelter earned her undergraduate degree from Augustana College and a master’s and doctorate degree in speech, language, and hearing sciences from Purdue University. Her work is featured in various scientific publications, such as the Journal of Speech, Language and Hearing Research, Developmental Science, Evidence-Based Practice Briefs, and Language Learning and Development. In addition, she co-authored a chapter in the Routledge Handbook of Communication Disorders.
Along with teaching undergraduate and graduate courses in phonetics, phonology, language development, and developmental language disorders, Gladfelter is the principal investigator of NIU’s Human Speech Kinematics Experimental Studies (HUSKIES) Lab, which explores factors that influence language learning in children with autism spectrum disorder. She is also a founding member of the NIU Autism Caregiver Group.
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