Jan Edwards


Jan Edwards joined the University of Maryland Fall of 2016 as a faculty member in the Department of Hearing and Speech Sciences and she also serves as an Associate Director of the Maryland Language Science Center. Her research centers on how preschool-aged children learn the sounds and words of language, how this relates to language skills, literacy and school success. She investigates how children learn to talk with a wide range of language experiences - multiple languages, cochlear implants, autism spectrum disorders, and mainstream and nonmainstream dialects of English. For more information on her research, please select the research tab, above.

Areas of Interest:
  • Language acquisition
  • Phonological acquisition
  • Speech and language processing
  • Language diversity and dialect shifting
  • Speech perception and production
  • Language disorders
  • Cochlear implants
  • Ph.D Speech & Hearing Science, Graduate Center, CUNY, 1985
  • MS Linguistics, MIT, 1981
  • BA English Literature, Barnard College, 1980
Course Name Course Title Semester Syllabus
HESP620 Speech Production Disorders Across the Lifespan Spring 2018
HESP818F Seminar in Language Processing: What did you say? Hearing Language in the Real World Fall 2017
HESP620 Speech Production Disorders Across the Lifespan Spring 2017

My research aims to better understand various aspects of language development such as the interactions between vocabulary growth and phonological acquisition, cross-linguistic phonological acquisition, and the impact of dialect mismatch on academic achievement. My research focuses on both typical and atypical language development  (including the language development of children with cochlear implants or autism spectrum disorders). Although most adults take the ability to speak for granted, children who are learning language must acquire and synthesize a complex system of sounds, words, and social understanding. Doing so competently supports future language development, reading ability, and academic achievement. Learning to Talk describes my research on typically developing children and children with cochlear implants. Little Listeners describes my research on children with autism spectrum disorders. Downloadable publications are available on both websites.

Campus Associate Director, Maryland Language Science Center
Former Students
  • Benjamin Munson (Ph.D., 2000)
    Professor, University of MN
  • Shurita Thomas-Tate (Ph.D., 2002)
    Associate Professor, Missouri State University
  • Asimina Syrika (Ph.D., 2009)
    Speech Language Pathologist, Roseville Area Schools
  • Hyunju Chung (Ph.D., 2010)
    Assistant Professor, Louisiana State University
Related Students (Listed by Student on Student's Profile)
0141D Lefrak Hall
Department of Hearing and Speech Sciences
Phone: (301) 405-5237
Email: edwards@umd.edu
Office Hours:
by appointment