Although some information on very early language development during the first two years of life already exists, there are still many open questions. Detailed knowledge on early language development process in different populations is important to fully understand how the language capacity is acquired.
Due to high variation in typical early language development, early identification of language problems is sometimes challenging. The language development process may also differ in different populations (e.g. prematurely born / bilingual children). Detailed information on early identification is still lacking. Specific information on early identification of language delay/problems would enable to offer timely intervention for those in need.
It is still open to question how language capacity is built up, i.e. how different language domains (e.g. lexicon, phonology, morphology, syntax) are interacting with each other during the childhood years. Recent findings have proposed that there exists continuity in language development process, but further specific information on the longitudinal pathways of different language domains and their possible interaction is still lacking.
During the last ten to fifteen years, knowledge on how to measure very early language development has increased. There is, however, a need for new methods which could be used effectively and economically to measure early language development in the clinical context.