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Wilfrid Laurier University
Todd Ferretti

September 13 PS 366  Definitions o Linguistics: the study of language, the rules that describe it and our knowledge about rules of language o Psycholinguistics: study of psychological processes involved in language o How people understand and produce language  Historical Background o Wilhem Wundt  Sentence rather than word is primary unit of language o Cognitive view of speech production  Speech production as the transformation of a complete thought process into sequentially organized speech segments  Early History o Francis Galton  Word associations  Memories retrieved to words  Relationship between memory and language o Merigner and Mayer  Slips of the tongue  Insight into language production  Behavioiurism o John Watson—Skinner o No role for consciousness, introspection, mind o Objective and observable behaviour o Laws relating to stimulus conditions o Associative chain theory  A sentence is a chain of associations between words  Lang acquisition and use explained by reinforcement and conditioning  Family and environment correct errors  Chomsky o Productivity of Language  people produce and understand infinite sentences that we have not heard before  cannot be reduced to stimulus-response o Poverty of Stimulus argument  Info from lang given to children cannot account for complexity of language  Intuitive knowledge of Grammar o Words with few associations can still be syntactically acceptable  Notion of Linguistic Units (Constituents) o Discontinuous constituents show long-range dependencies among words in sentences  Comsky’s Impact o Fall of behaviourism, emergence of cognitive revolution o Study of lang insight into human mind o Attempt to test psychological implications  New grammars  Role of innate mechanisms in acquisition  Linguistic Universal s  What is consistent across different languages  Linguistic information in psycholinguistic research  Early Modern Psycholinguistics o 70’s o Learn mental processes in production of language o Absorbed into cognitive psychology  Computational Metaphor o Mind uses rules to translate input into symbol o Cognition= symbolic processing   What is innate about language o There are some prerequisites enable us to acquire language  How much is innate?  Language Processes independent or interactive o Modular view  Self-contained set of processes  Inside and outside processes independent  Syntax independent from semantics  Serial approach o Interactive View  Different info interest at earliest point  Info from one stage influences at lower and higher levels  Parallel instead of serial processing o Bottom up Processing  Sensory input ends with representation  Lower step is never affected by a higher step in the process  Data driven o Top Down Processing  Concept driven, expectations  Word recognition ends with visual input  Higher levels influencing lower levels o Interactive Processing  Both top down and bottom up  Influences both ways  Do we need specific rules for language processing o Children learning past tense of verbs  Memorize the past tense form of a word  Add ed to end of word  Over-regularization errors  Children treat the verb as following the regular pattern o Pattern shows  Language learning is not just imitation  Not just instruction  Major Debate o Two View Points  Rule based/symbolic approaches: rules are built into language processes. Manipulate symbols by formal rules  Regular forms are produced by linguistic rules  Connectionist models/ Subsymbolic approach: irregular and regular forms of language have one single mechanism sensitive to statistical regularities  Generalized learning mechanisms in everyone  Cognitive Neuroscience o Relates brain function and anatomy to language o Relate brain-damage behaviour to normal models o Aphasia  Any impairment of language o Broca’s Aphasia  Rear frontal lobe damage  Impaired speech is severe  Agrammatical speech  No impairment to comprehension o Wernicke’s Aphasia  Opposite of Broca’s  Rear left temporal lobe  Fluent speech but often meaningless  Invented words  Impaired comprehension  Unaware of incomprehensibility  Methods of Psycholinguistics o Reaction Times  Most used  How long processes actually take o Priming Methodology  If two things are similar to each other, same level of processing, assist or interfere with each other. Unrelated = no effect  Bread-Butter  Doctor- Butter  Cognitive Neuroscience Techniques o CT/CAT scan (Computerized Axial Tomography )  Xray detectors pinpoint sources of each signal  3-d map  Where structures are o PET scan (Position Emission Tomography)  Injected with radioactive substance  Detectors measure level of glucose in certain regions  Learning brain function o fMRI (functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging )  magnetic field in brain created by magnets  track hydrogen atoms  track blood flow/activity  best spatial resolution  limited in temporal resolution o ERP  Measures electrical activity  Best for measuring temporal aspects of language processing in brain  Not as good for spatial resolution Chapter 1 Notes  Main points o Introduction  3 sets of mental processes involved in language use  Language comprehension  Language production  Language acquisition o Scope  Cognitive science  Linguistics o Processes and Knowledge  Tacit knowledge  Knowledge of how to perform various acts  Explicit knowledge  Knowledge of the processes or mechanisms used in acts  Areas of language knowledge  Semantics o Meanings of sentences and words  Syntax o Grammatical arrangement of words in sentence  Phonology o Concerns the system of sounds in a language  Pragmatics o The social rules involved in language use  Four Language Examples o Garden Path Sentence  The subjective impression is one of following a path to a predictable destination until it is obvious that you were mistaken in your original interpretation and are forced to back track o Indirect requests  Rules about the use of language in social settings, including rules of politeness  More polite than direct request  Sociolinguistics o Language in Apashia  Neurolinguistics  Relationship between brain and language o Language in Children  Language acquisition  Children know more than they say  Express themselves with two words  Eliminate closed-class/function word for a openclass/content word  Early Psycholinguistics o Wilhelm Wundt  Theory of language production o Edmund Huey  Studied reading  Eye-voice span and tachistoscope  Behaviourism o Emphasized associations o Semantic differential  Measure the associative meanings of words by asking to rate words o Associative chain theory  A sentence consists of a chain of associations between individual words in a sentence  Later Psycholinguistics o Chomsky  Discontinuous constituents  Separate units  Long range dependencies among words in a sentence  Poverty of stimulus  There is not enough info in language samples to account for richness of language o Rationalism  Role of innate factors in behaviour o Empiricism  Role of experience in behaviour  Current Directions o Interest in phonology, Semantics, and pragmatics o Interest in language production o Techniques to allows us to see images, brain mechanisms o Application in society September 18, 2012 PS 366 Outline  Psycholinguistic Methods  Fundamentals of Psycholinguistics o Four Pervasive properties  Duality of patterning  Morphology  Phrase structure  Linguistic productivity o Fundamental Components of Language System  Sentence—phrase—word—morpheme—phoneme o Duality of Patterning  At one level there is a large number of meaningful elements  At another level there is a small number of meaningless elements that form words  Universal property of language  2 levels  Small number of basic/meaningless sounds o Phonemes  Large number of meaningful sounds o Words o Phonology  Phones: speech sounds that are physically specifiable  Pill—spill  Aspiration o Puff of air  Indicated by [] brackets  Phonemes: smallest differences in sound influencing meaning  Big—dig  Categories of phones  Indicated by //  Allophones: Different phones that are understood as the same phoneme in a language  Languages have different phonemes  Phonetics: the study of speech sounds  Articulatory (how sound is made)  Auditory/Perceptual ( how sounds are perceived )  Acoustic (sound waveform and physical properties )  Phonology: the sound system of language, rules of how phonemes may be arranged in a word o Distinctive Feature Theory  Distinct if presence or absence distinguished speech sound from other sound  Binary contrast  + if present  - if absent  Ex. Voicing: whether or not vocal cords are vibrating when air passes  When errors are made, incorrectly hear a sound that is similar to target sound o Morphology  Morpheme: smallest unit of linguistic meaning  Morphology: study of the structure of words  Morphological rules: rules for combining morphemes to form words  Free Morphemes: units of meaning that do not have to be attached to words  Bound Morphemes (gramattical): attached to word, never alone  Independence  Derivational Morphology  Changes to words that alter meaning  Develop, development, developmental  Inflectional Morphology  Changes to words that do not alter their meaning  Kissing, kissed o Major categories of English Morphology  Number  Singular or plural  Person  First, second third o Verb Inflectional Morphology  Tenses  Indexes time of speaking in relation to time of event  Aspect  Indexes internal temporal properties of event o Verb Aspect and Event Structure  Imperfect – ongoing (was handing)  Perfective – completed (handed)  Perfect – completed (had handed) o Phrase Structure  Different ams structures that have important elements of meaning  Rules  NP- noun phrase  VP- verb phrase  Rewrite rules o How each constituent in a phrase can be expanded  Lexical insertion rules o Put words in the structure that has been built  Derivation: the entire sequence of rules that produce a sentence  Rewrite rules also recursive o A symbol can appear on both sides of the rule equation o No limit for embedding of sentences- productivity  Rules help determine who is doing what to whom  95% of English sentences have this structure o NP, V, NP ( main clause) o First noun is agent o Second is the patient o Word Order Constraints  Languages without tend to have more suffixes and prefixes  English  NP-V-NP  Subject-verb- object order SVO  Agent verb Patient o The dog chased the cat o Syntactic Ambiguity/ Phrase structure ambiguity  Some sentences are completely syntactically ambiguous  They are eating apples o Verb or adjective o Temporally Ambiguous Syntactic Structures  Garden path sentences  Direct object/ sentence complement ambiguity  The author read the book  And decided to sleep o Direct object  Was full of errors o Embedded sentence complement o Linguistic Productivity  Ability to create and comprehend novel utterances  Store rules for creating sentences  Recursive rule  A rule that refers to itself  Unlimited productivity o Grammar  A formal device with finite set of rules that generates the sentences in the language  Chomsky’s 3 criteria  Observational Adequacy o What is and not acceptable to different levels of representation in a language o Phoneme, morpheme, word, phrase, sentence  Descriptive Adequacy o Different relations between structures o Different syntactic structures but similar meaning  Explanatory Adequacy o Children select grammar from others, suggesting mechanisms to deduce correct grammar o Must explain role of linguistic universals in language acquisition o Transformational Grammar—Chomsky  Definition of Language  Language o An infinite set of well-formed sentences  Grammar o Formal device with finite set of rules that generates the sentences in language  Two levels of representation  Deep structure o Underlying structure convey meaning o Ambiguity  Grammar that includes only one level of structure is not descriptively adequate  Surface structure o Arrangement that influences order that the words are pronounced  Transformational rules  Apply to D structure result in S structure  2 step process to sentence derivation o Phrase structure rules generate the D structure o Transformational rules applied to D structure to generate S structure  Particle Movement transformation o A transformational rule that accounts for the movement of particles such as up around noun phrases o Structure dependent o Does not work with pronouns  Passive Transformation o A transformational rule that transforms the deep structure of an active sentence into the passive voice. o Invert subject and object o Insert preposition by o Add auxiliary verb and past principle  Issues in Grammatical Theory o Psychological reality of grammar  Derivational theory of complexity  Distance between surface and deep structure accurate index of the psychological complexity of the sentence o Centrality of Syntax  Lexical functional grammar  Lexical entries include various forms of the word  Explanatory burden onto lexicon and away from transformational rules  Multiple set of formation rules, complete account of grammar requires attention to interfaces  FLB (faculty of language in the broad sense)  FLN (faculty of language in the narrow sense September 20, 2012 PS 366 Grammar  Transformational Grammar: Chomsky o Deep structure  Underlying structure that conveys the meaning of sentences o Surface structure  Arrangement of constituents in a sentence that influences the order in which words are pronounced o Transformational rules  Apply to deep structure result in s structure o 2 step process to sentence derivation  Phrase-structure rules generate deep structure  Transformational rules are applied to deep structure to generate surface o Need for 2 levels of rep in grammar  Deep structure ambiguity  On s structure derived from 2 distinct s structures  Pair of sentences have distincty surface structure, but same deep structure   Case Grammar/ Lexical-functional Grammar o What semantic role is being played by word, construct sentence meaning based on these roles o Underlying semantic relationship o Lexical and semantic knowledge associated with verb subcategorization frames  Verb-subcategorization Frames o Info about different syntactic structures associated with verb  Verbs representation actives information o Info about conceptual roles played by noun in relation to event described by verb o Chase  Syntactic argument: subject/object (grammatical roles)  Thematic/conceptual” agent/ patient o Arrangement in surface structure  The dog chased the cat  The cat was chased by the dog  Thematic Roles o Agent: Instigator of an action o Patient: entity that was influenced by the event o Recipient: person receiving something o Location: where an object is placed, or where event occurs o Source: where something is coming from o Goal: where something is moving to o Instrument: thing used in causing the event  Thematic Role Representation o Traditional Perspective  Role content limited to syntactically relevant features that are conceptually primitive dimensions or sets of general features  Animacy  Cause  Control  Change of state  Thematic Roles as Verb-Specific Concepts o Detailed world knowledge about the set of things a person has experienced filling role o Salient features of roles are general sometimes  Shared by many words o Some may be specific  Shared by fewer words  Thematic Role Representation o Experiences with specific events are stored in memory  Verb’s word form  Event knowledge from semantic memory  Emerging representation gives knowledge of participants o On-line activation  Available immediately Information Processing System  Working memory o The temporary storage of information that is being processed in any range of cognitive tasks  Memory for brief exposure to letters o Whole report  5 letters are usually recalled  Do you only see 5 or do you forget as you are reporting? o Partial report  Recall letters from different layers  3-4 letters recalled  Records sensory experiences automatically  We have large info capacity  Rapid fading sensory store  Iconic- visual sensory  Echoic- auditory  Different Approaches
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