The Department for Education and Child Development, in partnership with the Telethon Kids Institute, has secured $1.38m towards a 5 year study exploring how language impacts child development.
Funded by the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC), the grant will significantly contribute to research into early childhood and parent engagement which will be undertaken by the Fraser Mustard Centre.
Conversations between children aged 6 and 36 months and their carers will be recorded through an unobtrusive device and transferred through speak recognition software that will collect, process, and analyse their language patterns.
The collated data will provide a way of looking at the quantity and quality of conversations across different socioeconomic groups and guide where the focus should be in children’s services and policy in the future.
This significant grant follows a pilot study carried out with generous funding from the department which tested the device on 18 families to determine the validity of the research and what barriers would come about in the process.