Parents may be able to provide language therapy more consistently within a child’s routines than their SLP because they are with their child all the time. But families have many pressures and demands which might make providing home supports difficult. In this study we want to learn what strategies work best at home with families, and what works best with an SLP.

Parents: Click here to sign up!

(Link will bring you to the website of our study partners at the University of Delaware.)

SLPs: Click here to help us spread the word!

(Link will bring you to a form to request fliers to hand out to families who may be interested.)

Does a child in your life have a language disorder?

We study children who have difficulty learning or using language, with no known cause. This condition is called Developmental Language Disorder.

DLD affects ~2 kids in every classroom. Some symptoms of DLD include difficulty using little parts of speech like prepositions and pronouns, using the correct verbs/tenses, saying and understanding longer sentences, and learning and using new vocabulary words.

In this study we want to know:

  • What types of language supports can parents consistently provide within home routines?
  • Do children learn language better from their caregiver than when an SLP provides the same language supports?

Frequently Asked Questions

Where is this study?

Online! This is a national, virtual study. You can participate from a device in any quiet location in your home. This study is being conducted by researchers at the University of Delaware and University of Maryland.

Who can participate?

Children may be eligible if they:

  • Are 4 to 9 years old
  • Have language impairment, delay, or disorder as their primary diagnosis
  • Hear and speak English at home and school
  • Do not have a diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder, hearing loss, intellectual disability, motor disability, brain injury, chromosomal disorder, motor disability, and/or psychiatric disorder
  • Have technology that will allow us to work over the internet

What happens during this study?

We will meet with you to review paperwork related to the study, complete questionnaires about eligibility, and confirm your internet connection. Then we will meet with you and your child at your convenience for 1-3 screening visits via Zoom to determine if your child fits the criteria for participating in the study. If your child is eligible for the study we will ask if you wish to continue into the intervention phase of the study and review the time commitment for that again. We will meet 1-3 more times to complete pretesting and then your child will be randomly assigned to one of four conditions:

  • Recast therapy provided by an SLP
  • Book reading provided by SLP
  • Recast therapy provided by parents
  • Book reading provided by parents

Children will receive language supports through completion of their assigned condition for 10 weeks. During this period some parents will be trained and coached to learn the language support strategies. All parents will use their phone or computer to record language samples on 16 days. Then, children complete 2 – 3 post-test visits so we can see what they have learned. Though many children can participate semi-independently, we find that it is helpful to have a caregiver present to support participation, particularly during the testing visits.

Families will be paid between $15 and $380 for participating in the study, depending on how many visits they complete.

How can I learn more?

Once you have completed the survey, someone from our lab will follow-up. You can also call us at (301) 405-3730 or send an email to! If you are an SLP who would like to help us spread the word about our study, please consider handing out fliers or sharing this website with interested families. Thank you!