Child Language Development

The details
Colchester Campus
Undergraduate: Level 4
Thursday 03 October 2019
Saturday 14 December 2019
27 March 2019


Requisites for this module


LG116, LG215, LG420

Key module for

BA QB36 English Language and Language Development (Including Year Abroad),
BA QQ3C English Language and Language Development,
BA QQ3F English Language and Language Development (Including Placement Year)

Module description

This module provide students with an introduction to a number of contemporary issues in the study of the acquisition of language as well as the study of some developmental language disorders. Topics will include the development of speech sounds, words, and grammar in typically developing children. The module may also introduce topics in bilingual language acquisition and in developmental language disorders, such as dyslexia.

Module aims

This course aims to:
• Provide students with an introduction to contemporary issues in the study of the acquisition of language and developmental language disorders.
• Demonstrate the importance of psycholinguistics to other disciplines, particularly psychology and cognitive science.
• Question and challenge stereotypical views on language acquisition, language processing, and disorders of language.
• Enable students to gain the necessary skills and knowledge to go on to second year courses in linguistics.
• Promote the acquisition of ‘transferable skills’ (e.g., data analysis, report writing, bibliographical referencing, etc.), which will be useful both inside and outside of academic contexts.

Module learning outcomes

On completion of the module, students will be able to:
1. Define key terminology related to first language acquisition and psycholinguistics
2. Understand the basic stages in of the acquisition of linguistic knowledge
3. Critique evidence used to support theories of first language acquisition

Module information

No additional information available.

Learning and teaching methods

This course consists of 10 weekly 2-hour lectures and 1-hour classes taught by a graduate teaching assistant (GTA). Students are expected to attend both lectures and classes regularly, to participate in class work as required, and to actively contribute to discussions. Reading will be expected in advance of lectures.


  • Erika Hoff. (2014) Language development, Belmont, CA: Wadsworth Cengage Learning.

The above list is indicative of the essential reading for the course. The library makes provision for all reading list items, with digital provision where possible, and these resources are shared between students. Further reading can be obtained from this module's reading list.

Assessment items, weightings and deadlines

Coursework / exam Description Deadline Weighting
Coursework Quiz 2
Coursework Essay 1 08/11/2019 40%
Coursework Essay 2 13/12/2019 40%
Practical Quiz 1
Practical Quiz 3
Practical Quiz 4
Practical Quiz 5
Practical Quiz 6

Overall assessment

Coursework Exam
100% 0%


Coursework Exam
100% 0%
Module supervisor and teaching staff
Laurel Lawyer
Dr. Laurel Lawyer, email ll17971@essex.ac.uk, Room 4.340, Telephone 01206 872082



External examiner

Dr Christopher Lucas
University of London
Senior Lecturer in Arabic Linguistics
Available via Moodle
Of 40 hours, 39 (97.5%) hours available to students:
1 hours not recorded due to service coverage or fault;
0 hours not recorded due to opt-out by lecturer(s).


Further information

Disclaimer: The University makes every effort to ensure that this information on its Module Directory is accurate and up-to-date. Exceptionally it can be necessary to make changes, for example to programmes, modules, facilities or fees. Examples of such reasons might include a change of law or regulatory requirements, industrial action, lack of demand, departure of key personnel, change in government policy, or withdrawal/reduction of funding. Changes to modules may for example consist of variations to the content and method of delivery or assessment of modules and other services, to discontinue modules and other services and to merge or combine modules. The University will endeavour to keep such changes to a minimum, and will also keep students informed appropriately by updating our programme specifications and module directory.

The full Procedures, Rules and Regulations of the University governing how it operates are set out in the Charter, Statutes and Ordinances and in the University Regulations, Policy and Procedures.