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Bilingual Education & Research Lab

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The Bilingual Education & Research (BEaR) Lab focuses on finding effective methods to enhance language and literacy skills in Spanish-speaking or bilingual children, whether or not they have language disorders.

The lab achieves this by creating strategies that provide bilingual services to the community and spreading the advantages of bilingual education to professionals and the general public.

The BEaR Lab also collaborates with schools in the Fort Worth Independent School District system as part of its goal to reach the community and meet the communication needs of children.

Student Involvement

The BEaR Lab engages students by offering volunteer opportunities to obtain clinical hours and research experience as part of their thesis, Honors project or undergraduate research project.

Students interested in participating in any of its research studies should

Participate in a Study

The BEST Lab is always recruiting children who speak Spanish, or are bilingual, with or without language disorders to participate in its studies.

If you or someone you know would like to participate in a study, or 817-257-4075.

BEST Lab siempre está reclutando niños que hablen español o sean bilingües, con o sin trastornos del lenguaje, para participar en sus estudios.

Si usted o su niño desean participar en alguno de nuestros estudios de investigación, puede contactar o 817-257-4075.

Research Areas

The BEaR Lab specializes in developing technology tools, i.e., multimedia, to enhance how monolingual (English-speaking) speech language pathologists and instructors deliver vocabulary services. The focus is on facilitating vocabulary acquisition in bilingual children.

BEaR Lab is currently conducting research in the following areas:

Bilingual Population

  • The use of a bilingual eBooks App to promote vocabulary to English Learners. This project will determine the effectiveness of using Spanish audio prompting delivered via iPad by monolingual English-speaking speech-language pathologists (SLPs) to enhance vocabulary growth in children who are English Learners (ELs).
  • Second Language Acquisition: The Effect of Assertiveness and Shyness on Vocabulary Instructions Outcomes for ELs. Shyness may represent a risk factor for language acquisition in English Learners (ELs), but there is limited research regarding the effects of shyness on vocabulary learning with direct instruction. This study examines the relationship between scores on shyness scale, and gains in naming and defining words following English-only instruction or Spanish-English instruction for ELs.
  • Text-to-Speech/Audio Prompting: A strategy to help monolingual SLPs to promote bilingual vocabulary to ELs. This research investigates the effectiveness of using a child’s first language (L1), specifically Spanish, with audio prompting (AP) delivered via a tablet computer by monolingual English-speaking clinicians to enhance vocabulary growth in the L1 and second language (L2) of children who are Els.

Culturally & Linguistically Diverse Population

  • Perspectives of Multiple Minority Identities in COSD. Individuals with multiple minority identities belong to groups that have been historically oppressed. The purpose of this research is to understand the experiences of speech language pathologists with multiple minority identities.

Lead Faculty

Jean F. Rivera-Pérez, Ph.D., CCC-SLP is an assistant professor in the Davies School of Communication Sciences and Disorders at TCU. He holds a bachelor’s degree in elementary education with a minor in special education from Universidad de Puerto Rico in Humacao, a master’s degree in speech language pathology from Universidad del Turabo in Puerto Rico, and a doctorate in communication sciences and disorders from the University of Cincinnati. Rivera Pérez's academic interests include bilingual development, biliteracy, vocabulary intervention, second language theories and the assessment and treatment of bilingual (Spanish/English) preschool children. He teaches courses related to bilingual assessment and intervention and cultural and linguistic considerations in communication sciences and disorders.



Professional Organizations in Communication Sciences & Disorders