After a bit of deliberation, we agreed that the 30 million word gap was an interesting topic that we'd like to try and tackle (thanks Professor Schuler for the idea!). Now a bit of background on what the 30 million word gap is...


By the time they are 3-4 years old, children of lower socioeconomic status have heard 30 million less words than some other children. Language is the basis of human interaction, and being exposed to less words can cause brain damage, particularly to Broca's area. This disparity in words heard can put children of lower SES at a disadvantage all throughout school.

We're looking to try and solve this problem. This is a problem that needs to be addressed early, so we're considering different solutions that can be applied either from birth or applied in school to "catch up" students of low SES to their peers. We definitely need more research before we can flesh out anything concrete, but we're looking at new technology that can promote vocabulary acquisition and parental engagement, as these are two major avenues that help children get exposed to more words at a young age.