Recent Research Explores the Ways Language Develops During an Infant's First Days

In her Psychology Today blog space, Brain-Sense, science writer Faith Brynie reviews recent research on early language development in infants.  New findings suggest that babies are learning to receive and process language much earlier than we had previously suspected. Some examples:

  • Brain activity in the left-hemisphere language centers can be detected in infants as young as five days old.
  • Days -old infants can distinguish the "melody" of their native language from the pitches and rhythms of other languages.
  • Weeks-old infants can perceive a change in speech sounds (such as ba versus ga), even when they hear different speakers.

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