Degree Name

MA (Master of Arts)



Date of Award


Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

Wallace E. Dixon Jr.

Committee Members

Jill Stinson, Shannon Ross-Sheehy


Relatively few studies have investigated the relationship between early childhood attentional control and later cognitive outcomes, especially language development. The current study is an investigation of the relationship between the executive functioning (EF) component of attentional control and language ability in the second year of life. More specifically, the predictive nature of two aspects of attentional control, attentional focus and resistance to distraction, was be the primary focus of the proposed study. Although it was expected that children both high in attentional focus and resistance to distraction would have significantly superior language development than infants with lower attentional capacities, analyses indicated associations between the postural deviation component of resistance to distraction and language. Attentional focus was also related to infant language ability. Avenues for future research regarding early childhood attentional control, resistance to distraction, and language ability are discussed.

Document Type

Thesis - unrestricted


Copyright by the authors.