Infant Language and Perceptual Learning Lab Summer Internship at UTK

The Infant Language and Perceptual Learning Lab (infantlanguagelab.utk.edu), under the direction of Dr. Jessica Hay, is currently looking for highly motivated undergraduates and graduating seniors to take part in our summer internship. The goal of this unpaid internship is to provide hands on research experience to students interested in pursuing graduate work in developmental psychology, cognitive science, normal language acquisition, or a related field. This is our second summer internship and first intern pursued graduate school at her top graduate school.

We have recently received an NIH grant: Infant statistical learning: Resilience, longevity, and specificity. Our lab studies the computational mechanisms that support infants’ ability to acquire language. The current body of statistical learning research literature minimally addresses the complex challenges infants face when learning language. In the grant, we aim to explore statistical learning in a noisy, ecologically valid setting. Secondly, we aim to examine infant’s long term memory for newly learned words extracted from continuous speech. Lastly, we will examine how infants represent newly learned words and how this relates to subsequent language learning.

Applicants should have a background in psychology or related fields. The following skills are desirable but not necessary: computer programming, statistical analysis, experience with young children. The student’s responsibilities include: recruiting participants, running studies, collecting data from participants, and contributing to data analysis. Successful applicants will be mentored by a graduate student or the lab manager, and will play an integral role in our ongoing projects. Students will also have the opportunity to interact with other developmental labs, as our lab is part of the Child Development Research Group at UT (cdrg.utk.edu). The internship lasts 10 weeks and starts late May/early June.

To apply please send a resume, the contact information of two references, and a cover letter detailing relevant coursework and research experience to our lab manager, Rebecca Bauer (rbauer5@utk.edu) byApril 14th.

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