Illinois Language and Literacy Initiative

Illinois Language and Literacy Initiative

A community studying language and literacy

The Illinois Language and Literacy Initiative allows researchers to share ideas and technological breakthroughs. ILLI researchers interested in language from biological and psychological perspectives collaborate with researchers from Illinois' top-ranked engineering programs to build knowledge, tools, and applications.

An eye tracker measures a research subject's eyes at the Beckman Institute, while an image of the eyes shows up on the computer monitor opposite.

Studies involve:

  • Uncovering the subprocesses involved in both language comprehension and production
  • Studying language in all its forms, like reading, listening, speaking, signing, and in different contexts, from reading single words to conversing to integrating language with other information sources while learning
  • Understanding early language skills in infants and children, all the way through changes in language processing in healthy older adults and those with cognitive impairments
  • Learning about native and second-language users who speak English, Spanish, French, Russian, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Arabic, Hindi-Urdu, and ASL, among others
  • Developing literacy, including in young and middle-aged adults

ILLI researchers look at individual differences, use interventions, and study applications using the fields of education, artificial intelligence, engineering, and brain-machine interfaces.

Their tools involve observational, behavioral, eye-tracking, computational, corpus-based, signal processing and neuroimaging work.

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Group leaders

  • Kara D. Federmeier
  • Kiel Christianson

Latest news

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    Several Illinois research projects result in Best Paper Awards

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    2021 Beckman Institute postdoctoral fellows announced

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    Beckman announces 2020 award, fellowship recipients

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    Testing during studying improves memory and inference

    Prof. Aaron Benjamin with graduate student Jessica Siler review notes on her laptop in the atrium of the Psychology Building.
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    Federmeier to discuss language and the brain Dec. 12 at Director’s Seminar

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