On Friday 18 September Dr Marina Kalashnikova gave a
keynote address at The challenge of
evidence based policy and practice: Where to now for early language
interventions?(opens in a new window), a conference hosted by the Murdoch Children's Research
Institute(opens in a new window) at the Royal Children's Hospital in Melbourne.
In her keynote, Marina discussed the qualities of infant
directed speech, the special type of speech that we use when addressing young
infants, and its relation to healthy language development in first years of infants'
"The quantity and quality of infant directed speech are
significantly related to infants' early ability to distinguish the speech
sounds of their language, recognise familiar words, and later vocabulary
development," said Dr Kalashnikova.
"However, infant directed speech can be
impacted by several factors including maternal depression and risk for sensory
or cognitive disorders in the child."
Infant directed speech can be impacted by several factors including maternal depression and risk for sensory or cognitive disorders in the child - Dr Marina Kalashnikova
Marina went on to discuss these potential risk factors
and their implications for the development of interventions to promote early
The conference brought together key experts in child
language development from Australia and the UK, and was attended by over 250
speech pathologists, early childhood educators, allied health professionals,
local government personnel, policy makers and researchers.
Thanks to Marina for engaging with the community and
sharing some of her ongoing research.