Flashcards in Chapter Eleven - Language Deck (95):
What is language?
-system of communication using sounds/symbols
What does language enable us to do?
-express feelings, thoughts, ideas, experiences
-provide way of arranging a sequence of signals to transmit info from one person to another
What is the hierarchical system?
-components that can be combined to form larger units
How is language governed?
-specific ways components can be arranged
Why is language called "universal?"
-occurs wherever there are people
What does it mean that languages are "unique but the same?"
-different words, sounds, rules
-all have nouns, verbs, negatives, questions, past/present tense etc.
What are general characteristics of language?
1. deaf children invent sign language that is all their own
2. all humans develop a language
3. language is universal across cultures
4. language development is similar across cultures
What are Broca + Wernicke?
-areas in frontal + temporal lobes related to different aspects of langauge
What did BF Skinner believe about language?
-language learned through reinforcement
What did Noam Chomsky argue about language?
-human language coded in genes
-underlying basis of all language is similar
-studying language as way to study properties of the mind
What is support that language is inherent?
-children produce sentences that they have never heard/never been been reinforced
What field Noam Chomsky's studies start?
-language as bridge to properties of the mind
What are psycholinguists?
-discover psychological process by which humans acquire + process language
What is comprehension?
-how people understand spoken + written language
What is speech production?
-how do people produce language
What is representation?
-how is language represented in mind and in brain?
what is aquisition?
-how do people learn language?
What are 4 things that psycholinguisitcs are concerned about?
2. speech production
What is a lexicon?
-our knowledge of words
-how they sound + what they mean
What are the 2 smallest units of language?
What are Phonemes?
-shortest segments of speech that, if changed, changes the meaning of the word
What are morphemes?
-smallest units of language that have meaning/grammatical function
When does the phonemic restoration effect occur?
-occurs when phonemes are perceived in speech when sounds of phoneme is covered up
Phonemic restoration effect
-"fill in" missing phonemes based on context of sentence/portion of word presented
What were the results of the experiment testing the phonemic restoration effect?
-subjects can't tell when cough takes place
-able to fill in
What kind of processing is phonemic restoration effect?
top down processing
What is speech segmentation?
perceiving individual words in a sentence
What is context?
-when taken out of context, presented alone
-words become must more difficult to understand
What happens when subjects are presented with their own speech but segmented?
-they could only identify half of the words
What does it mean to understand sound and syntactic rules?
-certain sounds are more likely to be separated by space between two words
What is the Word Superiority Effect experiment?
-stimulus that is either a word, letter, or non-word is flashed briefly
-followed by a mask
-two letter are represented rapidly
-s task is to pick flashed letter that is presented
What is the result of the Word Superiority Effect experiment?
-letters are easier to recognize when they are contained in a word
-rather than when they appear alone/contained in a nonword
How are words used in a particular language?
-create a large representative sample of utterances or written text (corpus)
What is the purpose of a corpus?
-indicates frequency of:
words, different meanings, grammatical constructions
Why are corpuses useful?
-a lot of what goes on during language comprehension can be traced to prediction
-our ability to perceive written words depends on how frequently they appear in our lexicon
What is the word frequency effect?
-respond more rapidly to high-frequency words
EX: respond more rapidly to "home" vs. "hike"
What is the lexical decision task?
-read list of words and non-words silently
-say "yes" when you read a word
-faster for words that are more frequent
What happens to eye movements during reading?
-look at low-frequency words longer
What is lexical ambiguity?
-words have more than one meaning
-some meanings of words are more likely
How is the ambiguity of words resolved?
-context clears up ambiguity after all meanings of a word have been briefly accessed
What is meaning dominance?
some meanings of words are used more frequently than others
What is biased dominance?
-when words have two or more meanings with different dominance
What is balanced dominance?
-when words have two or meanings with about the same dominace
Why are biased and balanced dominance significant?
-influences the wya people access the meanings of words
How did the understanding words task work?
balanced dominance word = CAST, CAST
biased dominance word = TIN, tin
-no prior context, speed determined by dominance
Are components of language processed in isolation?
What are 2 things we must distinguish between in order to understand how words create meaning in a sentence?
What are semantics?
-meanings of words and sentences
What is syntax?
rules for combining words into sentences
What are the two areas of the brain that syntax and semantics are processed?
1. Broca's area (frontal lobe)
2. Wernicke's area (temporal lobe)
What is Broca's aphasia?
-slow, labored, ungrammatical speech, have problem understanding some types of sentences
-problems with syntax
What is Wernicke's aphasia?
-produce meaningless speech
-unable to understand speech + writing
-problems with semantics
What have Event-related potential studies shown about syntax + semantics?
-associated with different mechanisms
What is ERP?
-occurring on a time scale of a fraction of a second
-consists of a number of waves that occur at different delays after a stimulus is presented which can be linked to different functions
What is the N400 response associated with? (4)
1. semantic manipulation
3. structures in temporal lobe
4. damage to temporal lobe reduces N400
What is the P600 response associated with?
1. syntactic manipulation
2. form of a sentence
3. structures in the frontal lobe
4. damage to frontal lobe reduces P600
What are garden path sentences?
-sentences that begin by appearing to mean one thing
-then end up meaning something else
What is temporary ambiguity?
-when initial words are ambiguous
-meaning is made clear by the end of the sentence
What is the syntax-first approach to parsing?
-as people read a sentence, their grouping of words into phrases is governed by number of rules that are based on syntax
-if reader realizes something wrong with parsing, they take other info into account to interpret sentence
What is late closure?
-parser assumes new word is part of the current phrase
interactionist approach to parsing
-semantics + syntax both influence processing as one reads a sentence
What does semantics influence
the way we interpret the relationship between the words in a sentence
What else might our interpretation of a sentence be influenced by?
the meaning of a scene we are observing
What was Tanenhaus and coworkers's experiment?
visual world paradigm
What is the visual word paradigm
involves determining how S processes infomation as they are observing a visual scene
What is the result of Tanenhaus and coworkers's experiment?
-eye movements change when info suggests revision of interpretation of sentence is necessary
-syntactic + semantic information used simultaneously
Besides syntax and semantics, what else do we use to understand/make predictions about language?
-knowledge about the environment
EX: "Getting himself and his car to work on the neighboring island was time consuming. Every morning he drove for a few minutes, and then boarded the ..."
What did Fine et al. study?
-investigated whether readers can learn to change their predictions based on experience with new constructions
-used moving window paradigm
What is the moving window paradigm?
-S reads one word at a time on computer screen
-pushed space bar to view next word
What is an important part of the process of creating a coherent/creative story?
How do we make inferences?
-determining what the text means by using our own knowledge
-unconscious inference, constructive nature of memory
What is one role of inference?
-create connections between parts of a story
What is coherence?
representation of the text in one's mind so that info from one part can be related to info in another part
What are 3 types of inference
connecting objects/people in one sentence to objects/people in other sentences
-inferences about tools or methods
events in one clause caused by events in previous sentence
What is the situation model?
-mental representation of what text is about
-represent events as if experiencing the situation
-POV of protagonist
-does not consist of info about phrases, sentences, or par.
mental representation sas simulations
we simulate the perceptual and motor characteristics of the objects/actions in a story
What does physiology have to do with simulations?
-approximately same areas of cortex activated by actual movements + by reading related action words
-activation more extensive for actual movements
What did Ross Metusalem's experiment test?
-ERP experiments as people read short passages
-looked at amplitude of N400 response (semantic response)
What did Ross Metusalmen's experiment result in?
-"guitar" generates smaller N400 tha barn: guitar is least slightly activated by scenario
-barn is unrelated
-guitar is related
-stage is expected
What is the most common form of language production/
What are conversations?
-2 or more people talking to each other
-dynamic + rapid
-involves shared knowledge
-need to take into account what other person is saying
What is the given-new contract?
-speaker constructs sentences so they include:
-new can then become given
What is common ground?
-the speakers' mutual knowledge, beliefs, and assumptions
-each person needs to understand the knowledge that the other person brings to the conversation
How is common ground established?
-back and forth exchanges in the conversation
What is syntactic coordination/
using similar grammatical constructions
What is syntactic priming?
-production of a specific grammatical construction by one person increases chances that other person will use that construction
What is the benefit of syntactic priming?
-reduces computational load in conversation
Explain syntactic priming experiments
-2 people engage in convo about some task
-experimenter determines whether spec. grammatical construction used by one person causes another to use it
-one of the 2 S could be a conferderate to prime construct
-S picks matching card, S describes card to other person
What are the results of syntactic priming experiments?
-78% of trials, form of S description matches for of confederate's priming statement
-supports idea that speakers are sensitive to linguistic behavior of other speakers
What is the Sapir-Whorf hypothesis?
-language influences thought
-nature of a culture's language can affect the way poeple think
What is the Winawer experiment?
-two cultures had differences in how particpants respnoded to blue squares based on how they were categorized