Laurence Leonard headshot photo

Pronouns: he, him

Phone: 765-494-3794


LYLE 3132
715 Clinic Drive

Curriculum Vitae Selected Publications Back to Directory

Laurence Leonard

Distinguished Professor, Rachel E. Stark Distinguished Professor, Department of Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences

Areas of Expertise

  • Language Disorders in Children; Cross-Linguistic Research; Language Development; Language Intervention

HHS Signature Research Area(s)

  • Developmental Health and Wellness


My research is directed at understanding the nature of childhood language disorders, with special reference to children with developmental language disorder (DLD). I have been publishing research in this general area for over 40 years and have had NIH funding since 1980. In recent years, my research has covered three areas. First, I have studied the bases of the major grammatical symptoms seen in DLD, through cross-linguistic research and more detailed studies of how children with DLD interpret input sentences. Second, I have conducted treatment studies aimed at facilitating children’s abilities in grammar. Most recently, my colleagues and I have undertaken an R01 project designed to determine the role that retrieval-based learning can play in increasing the word learning ability of children with DLD.  I have served as the major advisor of 21 PhD students and 6 postdoctoral fellows and place such activities at a high priority level.

Language Links Newsletter


  • PhD, 1973, University of Pittsburgh; CCC-SLP; BCS-CL


Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

  • Conduct cross-linguistic research, emphasizing how clinical identification of language disorders is culturally and linguistically specific; dialect variation as related to diagnosis is covered in my classes.

Current Courses

  • SLHS 523 - Language Disorders in Children
  • SLHS 619 - Scientific Writing

Selected Honors/Awards

  • Honors, American Speech-Language-Hearing Association - 2001
  • Callier Prize, University of Texas at Dallas - 2015
  • Fellow, American Association for the Advancement of Science - 2015
  • Honorary Doctorate, Faculty of Medicine, Lund University, Sweden - 2021

Selected Grants

  • Principal Investigator, Retrieval-Based Word Learning in Developmental Language Disorders, National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (R01 DC014708), Period: 08/01/21-07/31/26. Total: $2,556,470.