Dr Iris-Corinna Schwarz

Email: iris-corinna.schwarz@ling.su.se
Phone: +46 8 16 31 57
Address: Stockholm UniversityDepartment of Linguistics, 10691 Stockholm, Sweden


I'm interested in how infants acquire language. My research questions address the development of infant speech perception (native and nonnative speech perception) as well as features of the speech input (for example, infant-directed speech), relating both to one of the earliest measureable language outcomes, vocabulary acquisition. This involves cross-language studies with Swedish and English language environment infants using foreign speech stimuli (for example, Thai, Portuguese) as well as speech-like stimuli such as rotated speech or a phonotactic imitation of Swedish.

The experimental methods I employ in my studies are eyetracking and EEG (electroencephalography), but I also analyse video-observations of spontaneous parent-child interaction, looking for salient features that facilitate language acquisition.
Together with my doctoral students, we run studies in the field of parent-child interaction, the relationship between phonological complexity and vocabulary development, the effect of productive phonology on word learning as reflected in ERPs (event-related potentials), the development of categorical perception of vowels using MMN (mismatch negativity) as measure, and cross-linguistic stress perception features, also measured by MMN.

I collaborate with Inger Uhlén at the Karolinska University Hospital to develop a contingent feedback hearing threshold test for very young infants, partially funded by a VINNOVA Vinnverifiering scheme. I also collaborate with Denis Burnham and Christine Kitamura at The MARCS Institute at the University of Western Sydney to collect norm data for the Australian Communicative Development Inventory (OZI), measuring vocabulary size in 16- to 30-month-olds.


The impact of vocal emotion on early word learning: Behavioural and neural responses to parental IDS in Swedish and Australian English
01/01/2014 - 01/01/2018

The proposed project aims to establish how the affective salience of infant-directed (ID) speech contributes to early language development, specifically word learning. This is the first time this will be directly investigated. It is well known that vocal affect attracts infant...

The influence of attention to phonetic detail in speech perception on vocabulary development: Early prevention of developmental language delay
01/01/2008 - 31/12/2011
Vocabulary size is an important basic language skill and a good predictor for later language development such as reading acquisition. Lexical acquisition relies upon fine-grained perceptual skills such as children’s attention to phonetic detail in spoken words leading to ph...

Collaborating with

De Lacerda, Francisco

My research profile is focused on explaining the infant's acquisition of the ambient language's linguistic structure as an emergent information-structuring process anchored on independently motivated biological and social components. My specific goal is to present a coherent a...

Gerholm, Tove

Research interests
My research interest is language development,pragmatics and in particular pragmatic development; non-verbal communication; emotive expressions and the relation between these expressions and spoken language. More specifically I’m i...

Zora, Hatice
In my PhD research project, I investigate the perceptual correlates of word stress and their contribution to lexical access by carrying out electrophysiological measurements of brain activity (EEG/ERP). The objective is to indicate the activation of long-term memory traces for le...

Last updated on 2018-07-05 at 14:04