Javier Aguado Orea

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  4. Javier Aguado Orea

Dr Javier Aguado Orea BSc, PhD, FHEA

Senior Lecturer In Psychology


My main area of expertise is the study of early child language. I have published outputs in academic journals from the cognitive psychology field (e.g., Cognitive Science), from a more linguistic-oriented field, and from a developmental psychology (learning processes) audience and a more education-oriented one. I have applied naturalistic speech analyses (by using the CHILDES system and computational simulations) and experimental procedures (the intermodal preferential looking design, grammaticality judgements and speech elicitation techniques) to the study of first language acquisition in English and Spanish.


I joined Sheffield Hallam University on 2014. Before that, I have worked in a wide range of different universities in Spain: Universidad de Zaragoza, Universidad de Castilla-La Mancha and Universidad Complutense de Madrid. I completed my BSc Psychology undergraduate studies at Universidad Autonoma de Madrid and my PhD in Psychology at The University of Nottingham (2004).

Senior Lecturer

I teach developmental psychology modules for first and second year undergraduate students, as well as research methods. I am also supervising postgraduate projects on topics in relation with early grammatical knowledge and language acquisition.


Department of Psychology, Sociology and Politics

College of Social Sciences and Arts

I am interested in knowing more about early learning mechanisms associated with apparently complex systems, like the use of verbs by two-year-old children. I have applied two main methods for investigating these types of topics. First, I collected, transcribed and coded a longitudinal dataset of spontaneous child-adult linguistic interactions. I then have run different analyses of data in order to test theoretical predictions on the extent to what children are productive on using particular syntactic constructions. 

This early (lack of) productivity has been associated with either innately driven rule-based or constructivist models. Second, I have contributed to building and running different experimental setups, like the preferential looking technique, or studies based on grammaticality judgements.

I teach developmental psychology and research methods at different levels in both undergraduate and postgraduate courses. I am also supervising postgraduate projects on topics in relation with early grammatical knowledge, language acquisition and implicit learning.

I work in three areas/groups: 1) Cognitive and Neuroscience, 2) Language Interest Group, and 3) Education, Lifespan, & Development Research Support and Interest Group.

Courses taught:

I mainly teach MSc Psychology (in Hong Kong and Sheffield) and MSc Developmental Psychology courses, as well as some modules for the BSc Psychology course.

Modules taught:

Research Issues in Applied Developmental Psychology and other modules in relation with Developmental Psychology and Education.


I am currently working on a project entitled "Matching inflectional errors across languages: A study using sentence repetition tasks in Spanish and English".

I work with members of the ESRC International Centre for Language and Communicative Development (Lucid) https://www.lucid.ac.uk/


Mariscal, S., Casla, M., Rujas, I., & Aguado-Orea, J. (2012). Los métodos basados en la duración de la mirada: ¿una ventana a la cognición temprana? Estudios de Psicología, 33 (3), 277-292. http://doi.org/10.1174/021093912803758219

Freudenthal, D., Pine, J.M., Aguado-Orea, J., & Gobet, F. (2007). Modeling the Developmental Patterning of Finiteness Marking in English, Dutch, German, and Spanish Using MOSAIC. Cognitive science, 31 (2), 311-341. http://doi.org/10.1080/15326900701221454

Aguado-Orea, J., & Pine, J.M. (2002). There is no evidence for a 'no overt subject' stage in early child Spanish: a note on Grinstead (2000). Journal of child language, 29 (4), 865-874. http://doi.org/10.1017/s0305000902005263

Aguado-Orea, J., Witherstone, H., Bourgeois, L., & Baselga, A. (n.d.). Learning to construct sentences in Spanish: a replication of the Weird Word Order technique. Journal of Child Language. http://doi.org/10.1017/S0305000919000448

Joyce, H., & Aguado-Orea, J. (n.d.). The divergent nature of language performance and social use of language: An online scale for the Assessment of Language in Adults using Self-reported Skills (ALASS). International Journal of Developmental Science.


Escribano, C.L., Aguado Orea, J.J., & Canales, I.S. (2020). Psicología de la educación. Madrid, Spain: Editorial Sintesis.

Other activities

I have professional qualifications awarded by the Spanish National Academic Agency (ANECA), since most of my teaching experience has taken place in Spain.

I am member of "Language Makers", a Hallam Guild Group interested in raising awareness on Language Development Disorder.

Postgraduate supervision

I postgraduate students in the areas of language acquisition and assessment in children and adults, and in implicit learning.

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