Gal Kaldes

Developmental Psychology (Georgia State University)

Background: Before I began my PhD program, I practiced full-time as a speech-language pathologist in south Florida. I primarily worked in the public school system-my caseload mainly consisted of pre-kindergarteners who were identified with severe language and developmental disabilities. Currently, many of my research interests are extended to this population.

Current Interests: I am interested in toddlers and young children who have special communication needs due to severe developmental and language delays. In particular, I am interested in characteristics and contributors of early grammar development by young children who are beginning to combine words using their AAC devices. In the future, I would like to learn how to implement an eye-tracking paradigm to further understand whether the presence of abstract knowledge of certain grammatical constructs (e.g., word-order, morphology) explains whether children are successful with using AAC to produce early combinations.

Dissertation Chair: Dr. Mary Ann Romski

Presentation Topic:Predictors of Word Combinations by Toddlers who Participated in Parent-coached Language Interventions: Modeling count-data outcomes 

Discussion Topic(s): There are many issues related to studying children who have intellectual disabilities and use AAC (e.g., sample size and, when looking at growth over time, not having enough time-points to accurately model individual growth trajectories). However, I am currently interested in applying alternative analyses to model outcomes of frequency data (collected from transcribed language samples) that are highly skewed.

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