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Early Childhood Communication Lab


Early Childhood Communication Lab

The Early Childhood Communication Lab studies how young children develop the ability to communicate and learn language. The lab studies gestures and language skills in very young children that could be signs that the child may have autism spectrum disorder. 

About the Lab

The Early Childhood Communication Lab (ECCo) is focused on research related to the development of communication and language in infants and toddlers. Research conducted at ECCo is dedicated to increasing knowledge and understanding of toddlers’ language development, with particular emphasis on gestural and linguistic markers for children at risk for Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Much of the work is focused on assessment and differential diagnosis for such disorders.

Study Information & Participation

There's no cost to participate in this study

Do you want to be part of our research?! We are currently seeking participants for our latest study investigating language development in toddlers titled, Language Development in Toddlers at-risk for Autism Spectrum Disorder: A Pilot Study. Although most children with language delays do not develop autism, we hope this study will help inform us about how language delays relate to the later development of autism in some children. We are recruiting two groups of children to participate. Your child may be able to participate if he/she falls into one of these two categories:

I’m concerned about my child’s language development:

  • Ages 10-20 months
  • Limited vocalizations/words
  • English language is primarily spoken at home

Typically Developing Toddlers:

  • Ages 10-20 months
  • Typical development
  • English language is primarily spoken at home

Lab Members


Research Assistants

Ashley Stevens

Doctoral Research Assistant

Melissa Delmonte

Graduate Research Assistant

Debbie Weaver

Graduate Research Assistant

Alexandra Cook

Undergraduate Research Assistant

Employment and Volunteer Opportunities

Research conducted in this lab would not be possible without the contribution of our dedicated undergraduate and graduate students, as well as volunteers who work hard to ensure high quality service and comfort for children and their families.

Please contact Dr. Stacy Manwaring if you are interested in learning about working in the lab.

Contact Us

Phone: 801-585-1326
Fax: 801-581-7955

Behavioral Health Science

390 S 1530 E, Suite 1201
Salt Lake City, UT 84112


Behavior Health Science Building