Speech development is a process that begins early in childhood. For many children, this process begins early in infancy and unfolds at an appropriate rate. The result, for these typically developing children, is articulate speech by approximately 6 years of age. However, there is a group of children for whom speech does not develop typically. There are a wide range of etiologies for this atypical development. This entry provides information about typical speech development as well as several possible explanations for difficulty acquiring articulate speech.


Speech development begins very early for most typically developing children. Vegetative and physiological vocalizations (e.g., grunting, crying, cooing) quickly become a means of communication. Early in infancy, babies begin to play with their vocalizations by stretching out the length, pitch, and ...

  • Loading...
locked icon

Sign in to access this content

Get a 30 day FREE TRIAL

  • Watch videos from a variety of sources bringing classroom topics to life
  • Read modern, diverse business cases
  • Explore hundreds of books and reference titles