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Lecture 6

01:830:271 Lecture Notes - Lecture 6: Speech Delay, Dishabituation, Habituation

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Infant Communication
Speech delay does not mean that a child will stay behind in speech
Anticipatory Head turn through repeated exposure of Ba and Da (when the bunny
appears); he expects the bunny to appear when someone says Da
o By 10 months the baby can no longer differentiate between speech differences
Language Learning
Werker’s “Ba/Da” experiment
6 months old
o Can hear the distinction between universal sounds
10 months old
o Can no longer hear the distinction between the noises in different languages
Newborn Preferences
Habituation decrease in response in response to repeated exposure to stimuli
o Babies who are bored suck at a lower rate than babies who are curious or amused
o Baby hears the same word over and over first the baby is amused by the new word
but then after a while the baby does not respond to the word anymore.
Dishabituation the change in response based on a newly presented stimulus
o Use Gus and Bus the baby will hear Gus a lot and then get bored with it, then say
Bus and the baby will be able to distinctly differentiate between the two words and
get excited again
Brain Development
Head/Brain size
o Birth quarter of a size of their length of body; 20-25% of its adult weight
o 1 year nearly 70% of the weight it will be of adult weight
o 3 years 90% of the adult weight
85-100 million neurons in brain when you’re born with – nearly how much you have now.
Born with most of the neurons you will ever have.
What grows?
o Neurons 5 to 10,000 connections with other neurons
First year of life 2 million connections per second
2 to 3 years you’ll have the most connections you will ever have in life
o Connections between one neuron and another
Axon of a neuron sending signal to dendrite of another neuron
o Plasticity a flexibility to change in environment; can adapt to damage
Synapses that are being unused by the brain start to disappear because it is not
o Cell body
Synaptic Pruning
o Use it or lose it
o If it is not a distinction that is used in your environment than it does not matter to you,
therefore there is no need for the synapse.
o During REM sleep looks like brain activity when awake (paradoxical sleep)
o Infants spend more time in REM sleep than children/adults synapses are being
fired so they are being used and not die off
o Newborns spend 50% of sleep in REM, adults only spend 20%
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