Note – After 2000, Petitto is senior/first author and appears in last position, as per standard neuroscience authorship format. Exception: publications in which there is an advance of a new theoretical framework (in which case she is listed as first author).


Scassellati, B., Brawer, J., Tsui, K., Nasihati Gilani, S., Malzkuhn, M., Manini, B., Stone, A., Kartheiser, G., Merla, A., Shapiro, A., Traum, D., & Petitto, L.A. (2018). Teaching Language to Deaf Infants with a Robot and a Virtual Human. In Proceedings of the 2018 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (pp.553; 1-553:13). New York, NY, USA: ACM. ISBN 123-4567-24-567/08/06. DOI: View Document

Stone, A., Petitto, L.A., & Bosworth, R. (2017). Visual sonority modulates infants’ attraction to sign language. Language Learning and Development, 1-19. doi:10.1080/15475441.2017.1404468. View Document

Jasinska, K.K & Petitto, L.A. (2017). Age of bilingual exposure changes the contribution of phonological and semantic knowledge to successful reading development. Child Development. doi:10.1111/cdev.12745. View Document

Petitto, L.A., Langdon, C., Stone, A., Andriola, D., Kartheiser, G., & Cochran, C. (2016). Visual sign phonology: Insights into human reading and language from a natural soundless phonology. WIREs Cognitive Science. doi: 10.1002/wcs.1404. View Document

Jasinska, K.K., Berens, M., Kovelman, I., & Petitto, L.A. (2016). Bilingualism yields language-specific plasticity in left hemisphere’s circuitry for learning to read in young children. Neuropsychologia. DOI: 10.1016/j.neuropsychologia.2016.11.018.  View Document

Stone, A., Kartheiser, G., Hauser, P.C., Petitto, L.A., & Allen, T.E. (2015). Fingerspelling as a novel gateway into reading fluency in deaf bilinguals. PLoS ONE 10(10):e0139610. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0139610. View Document

Kovelman, I., Salah-Ud-Din, M., Berens, M., & Petitto, L.A. (2015). “One glove does not fit all” in bilingual reading acquisition: Using the age of first bilingual language exposure to understand optimal contexts for reading success. Cogent Education. Vol. 2, Iss. 1, 2015. doi: 10.1080/2331186X.2015.1006504. View Document

Jasińska, K. & Petitto, L.A. (2014). Development of Neural Systems for Reading in the Monolingual and Bilingual Brain: New Insights from functional Near Infrared Spectroscopy Neuroimaging. Developmental Neuropsychology. Vol. 39, Iss. 6, 2014. View Document

Kovelman, I., Shalinsky, M. H., Berens, M., & Petitto, L. A. (2014). Words in Bilingual Brain: fNIRS Brain Imaging Investigation of Lexical Repetition in Sign-Speech Bimodal Bilinguals. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience. 8:606. doi: 10.3389/fnhum.2014.00606. View Document

Jasińska, K., & Petitto, L.A. (2013). How Age of Bilingual Exposure Can Change the Neural Systems for Language in the Developing Brain: A functional Near Infrared Spectroscopy Investigation of Syntactic Processing in Monolingual and Bilingual Children. Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience. doi: 10.1016/j.dcn.2013.06.005. View Document

Kovelman, I., Berens, M., & Petitto, L. A. (2013). Learning to read in two languages: Should bilingual children learn reading in two languages at the same time or in sequence? Evidence of a bilingual reading advantage in children in bilingual schools from monolingual English-only homes. Bilingual Research Journal. doi: 10.1080/15235882.2013.779618. View Document

Petitto, L.A., Berens, M.S., Kovelman, I., Dubins, M.H., Jasińska, K. & Shalinksy, M. (2012). The “Perceptual Wedge Hypothesis” as the basis for bilingual babies phonetic processing advantage: New insights from fNIRS brain imaging. Brain and Language, 121 (2), 142-155. doi: 10.1016/j.bandl.2011.05.003. View Document

Shalinsky, M.H., Kovelman, I., Berens, M.S., & Petitto, L. A. (2009). Exploring Cognitive Functions in Babies, Children & Adults with Near Infrared Spectroscopy. Journal of Visualized Experiments, 29., doi: 10.3791/1268. View Document

Kovelman, I., Shalinsky, M. H., White, K. S., Schmitt, S.N., Berens, M.S., Paymer, N., & Petitto, L. A. (2009). Dual language use in sign-speech bimodal bilinguals: fNIRS brain-imaging evidence. Brain & Language, 109, pages 112-123. View Document

Petitto, L. A. (2008).  Arts Education, the Brain, and Language. In the Arts and Cognition Monograph: The Dana Consortium Report on Arts and Cognition. New York: Dana Press, 93-104. View Document

Kovelman, I., Baker, S.A., & Petitto, L. A. (2008). Age of first bilingual language exposure as a new window into bilingual reading development. Bilingualism: Language and Cognition, 11(2), 203-223. View Document

Kovelman, I., Baker, S.A., & Petitto, L. A. (2008). Bilingual and Monolingual brains compared: An fMRI investigation of syntactic processing and a possible “neural signature” of bilingualism. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 20(1), 153-169. View Document

Kovelman, I., Shalinsky, M.H., Berens, M.S., & Petitto, L. A. (2008). Shining new light on the brain’s “Bilingual Signature:” a functional Near Infrared Spectroscopy investigation of semantic processing. NeuroImage, 39, 1457-1471. View Document

Petitto, L. A. (2007). Cortical images of early language and phonetic development using Near Infrared Spectroscopy. In K. Fischer & A. Battro (Eds.), The Educated Brain. England: Cambridge University Press, pages 213-232. View Document

Norton, E.S., Kovelman, I., & Petitto, L. A. (2007). Are there separate neural systems for spelling? New insights into the role of rules and memory in spelling from fMRI. International Journal of Mind, Brain and Education, 1(1), 48-56. View Document

Newman-Norlund, R.D., Frey, S.H., Petitto, L. A., Grafton, S.T. (2006). Anatomical substrates of visual and auditory miniature second language learning using fMRI. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 18(12), 1984-1997. View Document

Baker, S.A., Golinkoff, R. M., & Petitto, L. A. (2006). New insights into old puzzles from infants’ categorical discrimination of soundless phonetic units. Language Learning and Development, 2(3), 147-162. View Document

Baker, S.A., Idsardi, W.J., Golinkoff, R. M., & Petitto, L. A. (2005). The perception of handshapes in American Sign Language. Memory & Cognition, 33(5), 887-904. View Document

Petitto, L. A. (2005). How the brain begets language. Chapter in J. McGilvray (Ed.), The Cambridge Companion to Chomsky. England: Cambridge University Press, 84-101. View Document

Petitto, L.A., Holowka, S., Sergio, L.E., Levy, B., & Ostry, D.J. (2004). Baby hands that move to the rhythm of language: Hearing babies acquiring sign languages babble silently on the hands. Cognition, 93, 43-73. View Document

Petitto, L. A. & Kovelman, I. (2003). The Bilingual Paradox: How signing-speaking bilingual children help us to resolve bilingual issues and teach us about the brain’s mechanisms underlying all language acquisition. Learning Languages, 8(3), 5-18. View Document

Penhune, V., Cismaru, R., Dorsaint-Pierre, R., Petitto, L. A., & Zatorre, R. (2003). The morphometry of auditory cortex in the congenitally deaf measured using MRI. NeuroImage, 20, 1215-1225. View Document

Holowka, S. & Petitto, L. A. (2002). Left hemisphere cerebral specialization for babies while babbling. Science, 297, 1515. View Document

Petitto, L. A. & Holowka, S. (2002). Evaluating attributions of delay and confusion in young bilinguals: Special insights from infants acquiring a signed and a spoken language. Sign Language Studies, 3(1), 4-33. View Document

Holowka, S., Brosseau-Lapré, F., & Petitto, L. A. (2002). Semantic and conceptual knowledge underlying bilingual babies’ first signs and words. Language Learning, 52, 205-262. View Document

Petitto, L. A., Holowka, S., Sergio, L., & Ostry, D. (2001). Language rhythms in baby hand movements. Nature, 413, 35-36. View Document

Petitto, L. A., Katerelos, M., Levy, B., Gauna, K., Tétrault, K., & Ferraro, V. (2001). Bilingual signed and spoken language acquisition from birth: Implications for mechanisms underlying early bilingual language acquisition. Journal of Child Language, 28(2), 453-496. View Document

Petitto, L. A., Zatorre, R., Gauna, K., Nikelski, E.J., Dostie, D., & Evans, A. (2000). Speech-like cerebral activity in profoundly deaf people processing signed languages: Implications for the neural basis of human language. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 97(25), 13961-13966. View Document

Petitto, L. A. (2000). On the biological foundations of human language. In H. Lane & K. Emmorey (Eds.), The signs of language revisited: An anthology in honor of Ursula Bellugi and Edward Klima (pp. 447-471). Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum. View Document

Petitto, L. A. (1999). The acquisition of natural signed languages. In C. Chamberlain, J. Morford, & R. Mayberry (Eds.), Language acquisition by eye (pp. 41-50). View Document

Petitto, L. A. (1998). On the biological, environmental and neurogenetic factors determining early language acquisition: Evidence from signed and spoken languages. ACFOS Neurosciences et Surdité du premier age. Bulletin D’Audiophonologie, XIV(1), 337-348 (France). Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.

Petitto, L. A. (1997). The existence of natural signed languages: Lessons in the nature of human language and its biological foundations. (Esistono linguaggi naturali dei segni?) KOS Rivista di medicina, cultura e scienze umane (similar to Scientific American), 146, 22-29.

Petitto, L. A. (1997). In the beginning: On the genetic and environmental factors that make early language acquisition possible. In M. Gopnik (Ed.), The inheritance and innateness of grammars (pp. 45-69). England: Oxford University Press. View Document

Petitto, L. A. (1994). On the equipotentiality of signed and spoken language in early language ontogeny. In B. Snider (Ed.), Post-Milan ASL and English Literacy: Issues, Trends, & Research (pp. 195-223). Washington, D.C.: Gallaudet University Press.

Petitto, L. A. (1994). Modularity and Constraints in Early Lexical Acquistion: Evidence from children’s early language and gesture. In P. Bloom (Ed.), Language acquisition: Core readings. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. View Document

Petitto, L. A. (1994). Are signed languages “real” languages? Evidence from American Sign Language and Langue des Signes Québecoise. Reprinted from: Signpost (International Quarterly of the Sign Linguistics Association), 7(3), 1-10. After appearing in the above, it was translated into French & Spanish by the “World Federation of the Deaf (WFD)”- an international organization in official liaison with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations, UNESCO, ILO and WHO. The translations were published in 1996 by the WFD and distributed as a monograph to heads of state and government officials throughout the world. French Monograph, (1996). “Les langues des signes sontelles de “vraieslangues? Une réponse probante issue de l’étude de l’American Sign Language et de la Langue des Signes Québécoise.” Spanish Monograph, (1996). “Son Las Lenguas De Senas Lenguas “Verdaderas”? Testimonios de la Lengua des Senas Americanas Y de la Lengua de Senas de Quebec.” In addition, this work has been translated into Japanese by Mr. Soya Mori and edited by Dr. Eiichi Takada and published in the leading Japanese sign language journal. Japanese Journal, (1996). Sign Language Communication Studies, Vol. 21. This work has also been published in India. Indian book chapter, (1996). In D. Deshmukh (Ed.), Sign language and bilingualism in deaf education (pp. 131-146). Maharashtra, India. View ENGLISH Document View SPANISH/ESPAÑOL Document View FRENCH/FRANÇAIS Document

Petitto, L. A. (1993). On the ontogenetic requirements for early language acquisition. In B. de Boysson-Bardies, S. de Schonen, P. Jusczyk, P. MacNeilage, & J. Morton (Eds.), Developmental neurocognition: Speech and face processing in the first year of life (pp. 365-383). Dordrecht, Netherlands: Kuwer. View Document

Petitto, L. A. (1992). Modularity and constraints in early lexical acquisition: Evidence from children’s first words/signs and gestures. In M.R. Gunnar & M. Maratsos (Eds.), Modularity and constraints in language and cognition: The Minnesota symposia on child psychology, Vol. 25. (pp. 25-58). Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum. View Document

Petitto, L. A. & Marentette, P. (1991). Babbling in the manual mode: Evidence for the ontogeny of language. Science, 251, 1483-1496. Translated into German by Von Adelheid Stahnke and published in the German Scientific American, July 1991, 19-20 (“Komplexe fruhe sprachentwicklung bei gehorlosen kindern”), and has been reprinted in many child development and language acquisition books. View Document

Charron, F. & Petitto, L. A. (1991). Les premiers signes acquis par des enfants sourds en langue des signes québécoise (LSQ): Comparaison avec les premiers mots. Revue Québécoise de Linguistique Théorique et Appliquée, 10(1), 71-122.

Petitto, L. A. (1989). The transition from gesture to symbol in language acquisition. In V. Volterra & C. Erting (Eds.), From gesture to language in hearing and deaf children (pp. 153-161). Heidelberg, Germany: Springer-Verlag. View Document

Petitto, L. A. (1989). Knowledge of language in signed and spoken language acquisition. In B. Woll and J. Kyle (Eds.), Language development and sign language. England: University of Bristol. View Document

Petitto, L. A. (1988). “Language” in the pre-linguistic child. In F. Kessel (Ed.), Development of language and language researchers: Essays in honor of Roger Brown (pp. 187-221). Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum. View Document

Petitto, L. A. & Bellugi, U. (1988). Spatial cognition and brain organization: Clues from the acquisition of a language in space. In J. Stiles-Davies, U. Bellugi, & M. Kritchevsky (Eds.), Spatial cognition: Brain bases and development (pp. 299-341). Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum. View Document

Petitto, L. A. (1987). On the autonomy of language and gesture: Evidence from the acquisition of personal pronouns in American Sign Language. Cognition, 27(1), 1-52. View Document

Seidenberg, M. S. & Petitto, L. A. (1987). Communication, symbolic communication, and language in child and chimpanzee: Comment on Savage-Rumbaugh, McDonald, Sevcik, Hopkins, and Rupert (1986). Journal of Experimental Psychology, General, 116(3), 279-287. View Document

Petitto, L. A. (1985). Language structure and language organization in the brain: Evidence from the study of human sign languages, Recherches Sémiotiques/Semiotic Inquiry, 5, 393-40l. View Document

Petitto, L. A. (1985). Pronoun acquisition in another mode. In V. Volterra & W. Stokoe (Eds.), Proceedings of the III International Symposium on Sign Language Research (pp. 55-63). Silver Spring, MD: Linstock Press.

Willbur, R.B. & Petitto, L. A. (1983). Discourse structure in American Sign Language conversations. Discourse Processes, 6(3), 225-241. View Document

Petitto, L. A. (1983). From gesture to symbol: The relationship between form and meaning in the acquisition of personal pronouns in American Sign Language. Papers and Reports on Child Development, 22, 100-107.

Wilbur, R.B. & Petitto, L. A. (1981). How to know a conversation when you see one. Journal of the National Student Speech Language Hearing Association, 9, 66-81. View Document

Seidenberg, M.S., & Petitto, L. A. (1981). Ape signing: Problems of method and interpretations. Annals of the New York Academy of Science, 364, 115-130. View Document

Terrace, H.S., Petitto, L. A., Sanders, R. J., & Bever, T. G. (1980). On the grammatical capacity of apes. In K. Nelson (Ed.), Children’s Language, Volume 2 (pp. 371-495). New York: Gardner Press. View Document

Terrace, H.S., Petitto, L. A., Sanders, R.J., & Bever, T.G. (1979). Can an ape create a sentence? Science, 206, 891-902. View Document

Petitto, L. A. & Seidenberg, M.S. (1979). On the evidence for linguistic abilities in signing apes. Brain and Language, 8, 72-88. View Document

Seidenberg, M.S. & Petitto, L. A. (1979). Signing behavior in apes: A critical review. Cognition, 7, 177-215. View Document

Marmor, G.S. & Petitto, L. A. (1979). Simultaneous communication in the classroom: How well is English grammar represented? Sign Language Studies, 23, 99-136. View Document

Seidenberg, M.S., & Petitto, L. A. (1978). What do signing chimpanzees have to say to linguists? In D. Farkas, W. Jacobsen, & K. Todrys (Eds.), Papers from the 14th Regional Meeting, Chicago Linguistic Society. View Document