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Lecture

Psychology 2410A/B Lecture Notes - Xenophobia, Cerebral Cortex, Grey Matter


Department
Psychology
Course Code
PSYCH 2410A/B
Professor
Adam Cohen

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All infants come into the world with linguistic skills
Infants come quipped with these skills, they do not learn them by listening to their parent’s
speech
Non-french infants do not prefer French, and French infants do not distinguish Italian from
English
Babies continue to learn these sounds of their language throughout the first year
By six months, they are beginning to lump together the distinct sounds that their language
collapses into a single phoneme, while continuing to discriminate equivalently distinct ones
that their language keeps separate
By ten months they are no longer universal phoneticians but have turned into their parents
Babies make this transition before they produce or understand words, so their learning
cannot depend on correlating sound with meaning
During the first year, babies also get their speech production system geared up
Between 5-7 months babies begin to play with sounds, rather than using them to express
their physical and emotional states
Between 7-8 months they suddenly begin to babble in real syllables
By the end of the first year, babies vary their syllables and produce that really cute
sentencelike gibberish
Deaf children’s babbling is later and simpler - though if their parents use sign language,
they babble, on schedule, with their hands
By listening to their own babbling, babies learn how much to move which muscle in which
way to make which change in the sound
Shortly before their first birthday, babies begin to understand words, and around that
birthday, they start to produce them
About half of infants first words are for objects: food, body parts, clothing, vehicles,
household items, animals and people
There are words for actions, motions, and routines
Finally, there are routines used in social interaction
Children differ in how much they name objects or engage in social interaction using
memorized routines
Presumably children record some words parents use in isolation or in stressed final
positions
Then they look for matches to these words in longer stretches of speech, and find other
words by extracting the residues in between the matched portions
Around 18 months, language takes off
Vocabulary growth jumps to the new word every 2 hours minimum rate that the child will
maintain through adolescence
And syntax begins with strings of the minimum length that allows it: two
Even before they put two words together, babies can comprehend a sentence using its
syntax
When children do put words together, the words seem to meet up with a bottleneck at the
output end
Children’s two and three word utterances look like samples drawn from longer potential
sentences expressing a complete and more complicated idea
WEEK 7: BABY BORN TALKING
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