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Chapter 11 Overview of chapter notes with lecture notes

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PSYC 2330
Francesco Leri

Chapter 11 – Overview of chapter notes WITH lecture notes/slides Components of Language -Communicative competence refers to how well an individual conveys their thoughts feelings and intentions -language consists of productive and receptive components (a small number of individually meaningless symbols (sounds, letters gestures) that can be combined according to agreed-on rules to produce an infinite number of messages) 1. Phonology: the sound system of a language and the rules for combining these sounds to produce meaningful units of speech - individual sounds used in a specific language - Phonemes are basic units of sound - /p/ and /b/ - vocables are a unique pattern of sound that pre-linguistic infants use to represent objects, actions and events 2. Morphology: the rules governing the formation of meaningful words from sounds - rules for how sounds form words - past tense addes – ed - plural –add ‘s’ 3. Semantics: the expressed meaning of words and sentences - smallest unit of language is a morpheme - meaning expressed - free morphemes: dog – has meaning on its own - bound morphemes: -- s – changes the meaning of ‘dog’ but needs dog to add meaning. Morphemes that cannot stand alone but that modify the meaning of free morphemes (--ed) - modifies meaning of free morpheme 4. Syntax: the structure of a language; the rules specifying how words and grammatical markers are to be combined to produce meaningful sentences -rules for word combinations -the cat chased the dog -different orders of words can make different massages 5. Pragmatics: priciples that underlie the effective and appropriate use of language in social contexts - adjusting your speech for the audience; speak differently to your friend then you would to a professor - knowledge of how language is used to communicate (eg. Speaking to a young child vs a professor) - sociolinguistic knowledge (politeness)  cultural rules of language use please, thank you, etc.. Theories of Language Development - Children all babble by 4 to 6 months of age, utter their first meaningful word by age 12 to 13 months, begin to combine words by the end of the second year, and know the meaning of many thousands of words and are constructing a staggering array of grammatical sentences by the tender age of 4 or 5 - Abstract signifiers words to refer to objects and activities before they can walk Learning (or empiricist) Perspective: - Operant conditioning: (Skinner) adults shape child’s speech through reinforcement. Skinner believed that adults shape a child’s speech by reinforcing those aspects of babbling that most resemble words increasing the probability the sounds will be repeated. Once shaped reinforcement held back until words can be combined. - Imitation: (Bandura) children aquire much of their linguistic knowledge by carefully listening to an imitating the language of older companions - Criticisms:  difficult to reinforce all utterances,  grammer not shaped (grammer error is okay for mothers, but somantically wrong the mother will correct it. Eg. “Look him cow “(okay), “look over there, it’s a dog” (corrected to say that theres a cow).  Early errors creative, not imitated (no adult says ‘juice all gone’) Nativist Perspective: - certain universal feature common to all languages that are innate - humans biologically programmed to acquire language  Noam Chomsky’s Language Acquisition Device (LAD) – processor that is activated by verbal input knowledge grammer rules  Dan Slobins Language-Making Capacity (LMC) – set of cognitive and perceptual abilities that are highly specialized for language learning; allow kids to analyze and detect phonological, semantic, and syntactical relationships o where the child is at linguistically - support for nativist perspective:  linguistic universals  brain specialization  Broca’s area: controls language production  Wernicke’s area interpreting speech  Sensitive-period hypothesis: humans are most proficient at language learning before they reach puberty  Prone to learning language when they are young  If this period is passed then you will be unable to learn it (by the age of 14) - Criticisms:  LAD/LMC concepts are vague – doesn’t explain HOW  Ignores contribution of environment – some placidity in adults  Language learning is a gradual process  Difficult to account for the wide variety of languages  What is the common denominator between language Interactionist Perspective: - nature and nurture - bio factors and environmental influences interact to determine course of language development - learning theorists and nativists partially correct  children are biologically prepared for language but require extensive experience  children play an active role in acquiring language - language acquisition a result of  biological maturation  cognitive development  environmstt  speak 1 words at 1 year; consist not of LAD or LMC but a powerful human brain that slowly matures Interactionist perspective: - explanation for linguistic universals  all children share many common experiences - not LAD or LMC  acquisition depends on cognitive development of the brain - support in the environment  joint activities with parents – focuses and attending to the same thing as the baby  motherese – repetition and high voice (child- directed language/ motherese short, simple, high-pitched sentences that adults use when talking with young children)  negative evidence – stimulates the child by pointing out a grammatical error by saying to back to them the correct way. Eg. “doggy go” mom: “yes, the dog is going away.”  Experience conversing  Parents provide negative evidence that grammatical error occurred  Recast: respond to child ungrammatical utterance with non-repetitive statement that is grammatically correct Prelinguistic Period - period before child utters first meaningful words - early sensitivity to speech  neonates react to human speech  recognize mothers voice at 3 days  prefer mother’s language and voice  young infants can discriminate more phonemes than adults - coos – vowel like sounds that young inf
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