Honors Program Theses


Open Access Honors Program Thesis

First Advisor

Ken Bleile


This paper investigates central issues surrounding poverty and how it influences a child's language development and academic achievement. It examines the differences in amounts of language input in the home environments of children from varying socioeconomic statuses and how this shapes their language acquisition. The research also explores the exposure to prenatal teratogens in addition to environmental toxins associated with poverty that may play a role in disparities in development, such as lead exposure. Furthermore, the issue of unequal healthcare and educational access between individuals of differing income levels is addressed. Ultimately, the purpose of this research is to call attention to the widening achievement gap and the unjust circumstances that impoverished children face, which have the potential to significantly impede their language skills and performance in school.

Year of Submission



Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders

University Honors Designation

A thesis submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the designation University Honors


If you are the rightful copyright holder of this thesis and wish to have it removed from the Open Access Collection, please submit a request to scholarworks@uni.edu and include clear identification of the work, preferably with URL.

Date Original


Object Description

1 PDF file (46 pages)