School of Education
Primary Subject Area
speech, intelligence, correlation, aphasia, specific language impairment, Williams syndrome, FOXP2
First and Second Language Acquisition | Psycholinguistics and Neurolinguistics
Sims, Savannah E., "Divorcing Speech Ability and Intelligence: Why the Two Can No Longer Be Strongly Linked Together" (2009). Senior Honors Theses. Paper 96.
Human language is a complex cognitive ability that is still not fully understood by scientists. Except in rare occasions of extreme seclusion or disability, children are able to acquire language without explicitly being taught how. Though animals have the ability to communicate, their “languages” are not comparable to human language. Commonly, people believe that one’s language ability correlates directly to one’s intelligence. It is the purpose of this paper to explore that belief and test its veracity. My hypothesis is that this correlation does not exist or is at best weak. This will be done by looking at several language-related disorders and the effect they have on human speech.