Gender Differences in Child-Directed Speech

 

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Do mothers and fathers communicate differently with their children?

Since the 1970s, several studies have been conducted to answer this question. This website highlights some recent work in the field, as well as several studies that explore more specific areas of the topic.

 

Child-Directed Speech

When people speak to children, they significantly modify their speech. Child-Directed Speech (CDS) is generally less complex and more exaggerated than normal speech.

Some features of CDS:

bulletphonological
bulletsimplification
bullethigher pitch
bulletemphatic stress
bulletlonger and more frequent pauses
bulletslower rate of speech
bulletlexical
bulletlimited range of words
bulletlocal topics
bulletspecial forms
bulletsyntactic
bulletshorter utterances
bulletless complex utterances

(Field, 2004)

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This site was last updated 03/18/05

Content and site design by Adam Berey, 2005.