The Chisasibi Child Language Acquisition Study

Picture of Cammi, a Cree child

Updated May 1, 2024

The Chisasibi Child Language Acquisition Study (CCLAS) is a longitudinal naturalistic study of how children acquire (Northern East) Cree. Data-gathering for the study took place 2004-07 in the Cree community of Chisasibi, Quebec, in the Cree territory of Eeyou Istchee. Since this time, data processing and analyses have been ongoing. 

CCLAS would not have been possible without the continuing generosity, patience and understanding of the families who volunteered to participate in this study. Miikwehch! Special thanks also go to the Cree School Board for their support over the years since we began, and for their hospitailty while we are in Chisasibi, and to the many Cree speakers who have shared their knowledge of Cree with us over the years.

For primary funding, CCLAS gratefully acknowledges the Social Sciences and Humanities Council for Canada (SSHRC):

  • 2004-08: SSHRC Standard Research Grant 410-2004-1836
  • 2008-12: SSHRC Standard Research Grant 410-2008-0378
  • 2013-22: SSHRC Insight Grant 435-2013-1297

2004-2022, the core CCLAS research team consisted of Julie Brittain (Project Director), Carrie Dyck, Yvan Rose and Marguerite MacKenzie (Department of Linguistics, Memorial University of Newfoundland).

Current communications regarding CCLAS should be directed to Julie Brittain ( A Community Report on CCLAS Findings is currently being prepared, with an anticipated completion date of summer 2024. 

Past and current areas of enquiry (child and child-directed language):

segmental phonology

word stress

Cree/English mixing (code-mixing)

the passive construction

nominal inflection, obviation

nominal inflection, possession

argument representation/distribution


verb inflection

See Project Output for publications, theses and presentations in these areas.