Lisa Gershkoff-Stowe

Lisa Gershkoff-Stowe

Adjunct Associate Professor, Psychological and Brain Sciences

Associate Professor, Speech and Hearing Sciences

Departmental Liason to Cognitive Science, Speech and Hearing Sciences


  • Ph.D., Developmental Psychology, Indiana University, 1996

Research interests

My research interests concern the development of language in infants and young children. My primary focus is the study of word retrieval processes. The questions I ask concern how the emerging lexicon is organized, how it operates, and how it changes with vocabulary growth.

In longitudinal studies of children’s vocabulary acquisition, I have found that naming errors are frequent in the beginning word learner. These errors often involve familiar words for familiar objects and suggest a fragility of processes associated with retrieving words from a rapidly expanding lexicon. This discovery may bring coherence to a set of related phenomena that includes the gap between word comprehension and word production, the onset of the vocabulary spurt, and fast-mapping. I use a dynamic systems framework to show how each of these events is likely to be solvable by the same basic mechanism.

Professional Experience

  • Post-doctoral Fellow, University of Chicago 1996-98

Representative publications

Tracking Multiple Statistics: Simultaneous Learning of Object Names and Categories in English and Mandarin Speakers (2016)
Chi‐hsin Chen, Lisa Gershkoff‐Stowe, Chih‐Yi Wu, Hintat Cheung, Chen Yu
Cognitive Science A Multidisciplinary Journal , 41 (6),

Dissertation Committee Service

Author Dissertation Title Committee
Gokcesu, Bahriye S. Metaphor Processing and Polysemy (December 2007) Goldstone, R. (Co-Chair), Gasser, M. (Co-Chair), Gershkoff-Stowe L., Jones, M.
Hanania, Rima Selective Attention and Attention Shifting in Preschool Children (August 2009) Smith, L. (Co-Chair), Gershkoff-Stowe, L. (Co-Chair), Goldstone, R., Jones, S.
Shayan, Shakila Emergence of Roles in English Canonical Transitive Construction (June 2008) Gasser, M. (Co-Chair), Gershkoff-Stowe, L. (Co-Chair), Leake, D., Goldstone, R., Smith, L.