Recent research has raised the hypothesis that brain maturation processes may play an important role in the linkage between infant joint attention and language development. This hypothesis was examined using EEG, joint attention and parent report language measures in a longitudinal study of 29 infants assessed at 14, 18 and 24 months of age. The results indicated that both measures of joint attention and EEG coherence at 14 months were related to language development at 24 months. Furthermore, both EEG coherence measures and joint attention measures made contributions to multiple regression equations predicting individual differences in language development. Finally, coherence data from this study were consistent with Thatcher's (1994) theory of different patterns of neural integration and differentiation in the early maturation of the left and right hemispheres. The implications of these results for understanding the nature of the relations between joint attention and language development, as well as the utility of EEG coherence measures in developmental neuroscience are discussed.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Developmental and Educational Psychology