Journal of Child Language (J CHILD LANG)

Publisher: Cambridge University Press (CUP)

Journal description

A key publication in the field Journal of Child Language publishes articles on all aspects of the scientific study of language behaviour in children the principles which underlie it and the theories which may account for it. The international range of authors and breadth of coverage allow the journal to forge links between many different areas of research including psychology linguistics cognitive science and anthropology. This interdisciplinary approach spans a wide range of interests: phonology phonetics morphology syntax vocabulary semantics pragmatics sociolinguistics or any other recognised facet of language study. In addition to articles and book reviews the journal contains a "Notes" section and a new occasional section has been added which contains a review article plus commentaries by a range of other researchers.

Current impact factor: 1.41

Impact Factor Rankings

2015 Impact Factor Available summer 2016
2009 Impact Factor 1.04

Additional details

5-year impact 1.72
Cited half-life >10.0
Immediacy index 0.10
Eigenfactor 0.00
Article influence 0.64
Website Journal of Child Language website
Other titles Journal of child language
ISSN 0305-0009
OCLC 974793
Material type Periodical, Internet resource
Document type Journal / Magazine / Newspaper, Internet Resource

Publisher details

Cambridge University Press (CUP)

  • Pre-print
    • Author can archive a pre-print version
  • Post-print
    • Author can archive a post-print version
  • Conditions
    • Author's Pre-print on author's personal website, departmental website, social media websites, institutional repository, non-commercial subject-based repositories, such as PubMed Central, Europe PMC or arXiv
    • Author's post-print on author's personal website, departmental website, institutional repository, non-commercial subject-based repositories, such as PubMed Central, Europe PMC or arXiv, on acceptance of publication
    • Publisher's version/PDF cannot be used
    • Published abstract may be deposited
    • Pre-print to record acceptance for publication
    • Publisher copyright and source must be acknowledge
    • Must link to publisher version
    • This policy is an exception to the default policies of 'Cambridge University Press (CUP)'
  • Classification
    ​ green

Publications in this journal

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The purpose of this study was to examine attention allocation in toddlers who were late talkers and toddlers with typical language development while they were engaged in a word-learning task in order to determine if differences exist. Two-year-olds who were late talkers (11) and typically developing toddlers (11) were taught twelve novel pseudo-words for unfamiliar objects over ten training sessions. The toddlers' attention allocation during the word-learning sessions was measured as well as their comprehension of the newly learned words. Late talkers showed reduced attention allocation to objects during word-training sessions, and also comprehended fewer of the novel words than toddlers with typical language development. Attention allocation was found to be a stronger predictor of word learning as compared to cognition and auditory comprehension. Reduced attention allocation may contribute to the early lexical delay characteristic in late talkers.
    Journal of Child Language 07/2015; DOI:10.1017/S0305000915000379
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: This study investigated how Turkish-speaking children and adults interpret negative sentences with disjunction (English or ) and ones with conjunction (English and ). The goal was to see whether Turkish-speaking children and adults assigned the same interpretation to both kinds of sentences and, if not, to determine the source of the differences. Turkish-speaking children and adults were found to assign different interpretations to negative sentences with disjunction just in case the nouns in the disjunction phrase were marked with accusative case. For children, negation took scope over disjunction regardless of case marking, whereas, for adults, disjunction took scope over negation if the disjunctive phrases were case marked. Both groups assigned the same interpretation to negative sentences with conjunction; both case-marked and non-case-marked conjunction phrases took scope over negation. The findings are taken as evidence for a ‘subset’ principle of language learnability that dictates children's initial scope assignments.
    Journal of Child Language 06/2015; DOI:10.1017/S0305000915000306
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Past research suggests that bilingualism positively affects children's performance in false belief tasks. However, researchers have yet to fully explore factors that are related to better performance in these tasks within bilingual groups. The current study includes an assessment of proficiency in both languages (which was lacking in past work) and investigates the relationship between proficiency and performance in a variety of mental state tasks (not just false belief). Furthermore, it explores whether the relationship between language proficiency and performance in mental state tasks differs between bilingual and monolingual groups. Twenty-six Spanish–English bilingual and twenty-six English monolingual preschool-age children completed seven mental state tasks. Findings provide evidence that high proficiency in English is related to better performance in mental state tasks for monolinguals. In contrast, high proficiency in both English and Spanish is related to better performance in mental state tasks for bilinguals.
    Journal of Child Language 06/2015; -1. DOI:10.1017/S0305000915000276
  • Journal of Child Language 03/2015; 42(2):316-322. DOI:10.1017/S0305000914000841
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: When learning their first language, children develop strategies for assigning semantic roles to sentence structures, depending on morphosyntactic cues such as case and word order. Traditionally, comprehension experiments have presented transitive clauses in isolation, and cross-linguistically children have been found to misinterpret object-first constructions by following a word-order strategy (Chan, Lieven & Tomasello, 2009; Dittmar, Abbot-Smith, Lieven & Tomasello, 2008; Hakuta, 1982; McDonald, 1989; Slobin & Bever, 1982). In an act-out study, we replicated this finding with Danish preschoolers. However, object-first clauses may be context-sensitive structures, which are infelicitous in isolation. In a second act-out study we presented OVS clauses in supportive and unsupportive discourse contexts and in isolation and found that five- to six-year-olds' OVS comprehension was enhanced in discourse-pragmatically felicitous contexts. Our results extend previous findings of preschoolers' sensitivity to discourse-contextual cues in sentence comprehension (Hurewitz, 2001; Song & Fisher, 2005) to the basic task of assigning agent and patient roles.
    Journal of Child Language 01/2015; -1:1-30. DOI:10.1017/S0305000914000786
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: This study examined (a) the relationship between gesture and speech produced by children with specific language impairment (SLI) and typically developing (TD) children, and their mothers, during shared book-reading, and (b) the potential effectiveness of gestures accompanying maternal speech on the conversational responsiveness of children. Fifteen preschoolers with expressive SLI were compared with fifteen age-matched and fifteen language-matched TD children. Child and maternal utterances were coded for modality, gesture type, gesture–speech informational relationship, and communicative function. Relative to TD peers, children with SLI used more bimodal utterances and gestures adding unique information to co-occurring speech. Some differences were mirrored in maternal communication. Sequential analysis revealed that only in the SLI group maternal reading accompanied by gestures was significantly followed by child's initiatives, and when maternal non-informative repairs were accompanied by gestures, they were more likely to elicit adequate answers from children. These findings support the ‘gesture advantage’ hypothesis in children with SLI, and have implications for educational and clinical practice.
    Journal of Child Language 01/2015; DOI:10.1017/S0305000914000762
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Conventional implicatures are omnipresent in daily life communication but experimental research on this topic is sparse, especially research with children. The aim of this study was to investigate if eight- to twelve-year-old children spontaneously make the conventional implicature induced by but, so , and nevertheless in ‘p but q’ sentences. Additionally, the study aimed to shed light on the cognitive effort required for these inferences by measuring working memory (WM) capacity. Our results show that children do make these inferences to a certain extent, but are sensitive to the content of the arguments. We found a significant effect of sentence type, but did not observe any developmental effect, nor any effect of WM: a higher age or WM capacity does not result in more pragmatic inferences.
    Journal of Child Language 07/2014; 42(03):1-14. DOI:10.1017/S0305000914000312
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: ABSTRACT Perusing early issues of this Journal from nearly forty years ago, we find many topics on the contents lists that could appear in a current issue. But the resources available to contributors for addressing questions of interest have changed dramatically, not least in the public availability of data. Here we look briefly at two assets which have accrued to the field in the intervening decades, and at the contributions they make. CHILDES provides a level playing field on which debates about the import of language sample data, especially longitudinal data, can be played out. The MBCDI and its offspring encourage the collection of data from large samples of individuals and so promote the exploration of factors that may explain individual differences. Both have been major contributions to the field.
    Journal of Child Language 07/2014; 41 Suppl 1(S1):18-25. DOI:10.1017/S0305000914000191
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: ABSTRACT I first outline three major developments in child language research over the past forty years: the use of computational modelling to reveal the structure of information in the input; the focus on quantifying productivity and abstraction; and developments in the explanation of systematic errors. Next, I turn to what I consider to be major outstanding issues: how the network of constructions builds up and the relationship between social and cognitive development and language learning. Finally, I briefly consider a number of other areas of importance to a psychologically realistic understanding of children's language development.
    Journal of Child Language 07/2014; 41 Suppl 1(S1):48-63. DOI:10.1017/S0305000914000282
  • Article: Editorial.
    Journal of Child Language 07/2014; 41 Suppl 1:v-vi. DOI:10.1017/S0305000914000129
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: ABSTRACT The entry into language via first words and, the acquisition of word meanings is considered from the perspective of publications in the Journal of Child Language over the past forty years. Problems in achieving word meanings include the disparate and sparse concepts available to the child from past prelanguage experience. Variability in beginning word learning and in its progress along a number of dimensions suggests the problems that children may encounter, as well as the strategies and styles they adopt to make progress. Social context and adult practices are vitally involved in the success of this process. Whereas much headway has been made over the past decades, much remains to be revealed through dynamic systems theory and developmental semiotic analyses, as well as laboratory research aimed at social context conditions.
    Journal of Child Language 07/2014; 41 Suppl 1(S1):93-104. DOI:10.1017/S0305000914000154