Department of Communication Disorders

Megan-Brette Hamilton

Megan-Brette Hamilton

Megan-Brette Hamilton


1143c Haley Center
(334) 844-7916
Lab Website


  • Ph.D. in Speech and Hearing Science, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
  • M.A. in Hearing and Speech Science, University of Maryland
  • B.A. in Communication Sciences and Disorders, Hampton University

Office Hours

  • By appointment

About Megan-Brette Hamilton
Assistant Professor

Dr. Hamilton is an assistant professor and an ASHA-certified speech-language pathologist (although she prefers the term communication specialist/coach). She spent 10 years in New York City schools working primarily with African American and Latino/a students.  During this time, she also hosted a show on Brooklyn cable where she got a taste of the diverse cultures and dialects of the city.  Her research centers on the classroom experiences of African American English-speaking children and speakers of other non-mainstream dialects.  She is curious about the paralinguistic aspects of dialect, teacher-student communication interactions, and the role of dialect and cultural identity in acquiring Mainstream American English literacy.  Megan-Brette has presented her work internationally, consulted with teachers and speech-language pathologists, and maintains a website dedicated to increasing the understanding of cultural-linguistic diversity.  .

Major Research areas

  • Cultural-linguistic differences in children with and without language disorders
  • African American English-speaking children’s classroom experiences
  • Mainstream American English literacy acquisition
  • Cultural-linguistic perspectives and competence in students and professionals
  • Qualitative research methods

Classes Taught

  • CMDS 3000: Introduction to Speech Pathology and Audiology
  • CMDS 4560: Child and Adolescent Language Disorders
  • CMDS 7700: Clinical Problem Solving I
  • CMDS 7720: Clinical Problem Solving II

Recent Publications and Presentations


Recent Publications:

  • Hamilton, M.B., Mont, E., & McLain, C. (accepted). Deletion, omission, reduction: Redefining the language we use to talk about AAE. Perspectives of the ASHA Special Interest Groups. 
  • Pearson, J. N., Hamilton, M. B., & Meadan, H. (2018). “We saw our son blossom” A guide for fostering culturally responsive partnerships to support African American autistic children and their families. Perspectives of the ASHA Special Interest Groups3(1), 84-97.
  • Hamilton, M. B., Angulo-Jiménez, H., Taylo, C., & DeThorne, L. S. (2018). Clinical implications for working with nonmainstream dialect speakers: A focus on two Filipino kindergartners. Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools, 1-12.
  • Hamilton, M-B. (2016). What does it mean to sound African American? Teachers’ perceptions of school age children’s communication (Dissertation, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign). 
  • DeThorne, L.S., Hengst, J., & Hamilton, M-B. (2016).  Communication disorders. In: Howard S. Friedman (Ed.), Encyclopedia of mental health, 2nd Edition, Vol. 1, (pp. 324-329). Waltham, MA: Academic Press.
  • Jarrett, R.L., Hamilton, M-B., & Coba-Rodriguez, S. (2015).  "So we would all help pitch in:" The family literacy practices of low-income African American mothers of preschoolers.  Journal of Communication Disorders.
  • Hamilton, M-B. (2014). “If there’s more than one bus you say…”: Cultural-linguistic mismatch within the context of teacher-child interactions (Thesis, University of Illinois at Urbana- Champaign).


Recent Presentations:

  • Hamilton, M-B. (March 2018). Cultural-linguistic competence in the 21stcentury: Why it matters. CLA Diversity Research Symposium, Auburn University.
  • Hamilton, M-B. (January 2018).  Culture, language, and learning: Considerations for the classroom curriculum. Oral presentation Conversations in Celebration of Teaching conference, Auburn University.
  • Hamilton, M-B. & DeThorne, L.S. (November 2017) From colorblind to color brave: Becoming a culturally-competent clinician. Oral presentation American Speech-Language Hearing Association Convention, Los Angeles, CA.
  • Hamilton, M-B. (September 2017) But what about language? Linking oral language, cultural identity, and literacy. Oral presentation 47th Annual National Black Child Development Institute, Atlanta, GA.
  • Hamilton, M-B., DeThorne, L. (May 2017) “My job is to get them ready for the world that’s out there:” Teachers’ perceptions of AAE. Poster presentation 13th International Congress of Qualitative Inquiry 2017, Urbana, IL.
  • Hamilton, M-B., DeThorne, L. (April 2017) “Street talking”…”another layer of ESL:” Teachers’ perceptions of AAE. Poster presentation National Black Association of Speech Language and Hearing Conference, Atlanta, GA. 
  • Hamilton, M-B. (February, 2017) Expanding cultural competence in your clinical practice: Working with AAE-speaking children and their families. Oral presentation at Speech and Hearing Association of Alabama Convention 2017 Birmingham, AL. 
  • Hamilton, M-B., DeThorne, L. (June 2016) Cultural-linguistic mismatch with an AAE-speaking kindergartner.  Poster presentation at KI@Illinois Summit, Urbana, IL.
  • Hamilton, M-B., DeThorne, L., Dey, A., Weiss, C., & Mitra, P. (November 2015). “I can’t control my English:” Linguistic profiles of two kindergartners from Phillippine English-speaking households. Poster presentation at ASHA, Denver, CO.
  • Hamilton, M-B. & DeThorne, L.S. (July 2015).  Beyond ain’t and be: Cultural-linguistic mismatch in teacher-child interactions.  Poster presented at ASHA Schools Phoenix, AZ. 
  • Hamilton, M-B. & DeThorne, L.S. (June 2015).  Beyond ain’t and be: Cultural-linguistic mismatch in teacher-child interactions.  Poster presented at Symposium on Research in Child Language Disorders (SRCLD) Conference, Madison, WI.
  • Hamilton, M-B.  & DeThorne, L.S. (September 2014).  Translating the Complexity of Cultural-Linguistic Diversity into Research Practices.  Dialogue paper presented at the International Society for Cultural and Activity Research, PhD day, Sydney, Australia. 
  • Jarrett, R.L., Coba, R. S., & Hamilton, M-B. (August 2014).  Who’s ready for school? School readiness perspectives from parents, preschool teachers, and kindergarten teachers.  Paper presented at the American Sociological Association Conference, San Franciso, CA. 
  • Coba R., S., Hamilton, M-B., & Jarrett, R.L. (June 2014).  “We gotta get on the same page and speak the same language!” Partnerships between families, Head Start teachers, and kindergarten teachers.  Poster presented at Head Start’s 12th Annual National Research Conference, Washington, DC.
  • Hamilton, M-B., Coba R., S., & Jarrett, R.L. (May 2014).  “We just talk…” Oral language practices of low-income African American families.  Poster presented at the Qualitative Inquiry conference, Champaign-Urbana, IL
  • Coba R., S., Hamilton, M-B., Jarrett, R.L. (May 2014).  Worlds apart: School readiness beliefs and practices among teachers and low-income African American parents of preschoolers.  Poster presented at Qualitative Inquiry conference, Champaign-Urbana, IL.
  • Coba R., S., Hamilton, M-B., Jarrett, R.L., & Gates, E. (April 2014).  Parents’ perspectives on and preparation for kindergarten school readiness.  Paper presented at American Educational Research Association conference, Philadelphia, PA. 
  • Dey, A., Hamilton, M-B., Dumoulin, B. (April 2014). Dialect or disorder: Use of the DELV in three kindergarten children with distinct language profiles.  Poster presented at Undergraduate Research Symposium Champaign-Urbana, IL 

Last Updated: July 17, 2018