Chapter 9: Language & Communication
1/26/2013 9:12:00 PM
Language: Is a system for communicating with others using signals that are
combined according to rules of grammar and convey meaning.
Grammar: A set of rules that specify how the units of language can be
combined to produce meaningful messages
Phonemes: The smallest units of sound that are recognizable as speech rather
than as random noise are.
Phonological rules: That indicate how phonemes can be combined to
produce speech sounds.
Morphemes: the smallest meaningful units of language
Morphological rules: indicate how morphemes can be combined to form
Content morphemes: refer to things and events (e.g., ―cat,‖ ―dog,‖ ―take‖).
Function morphemes: serve grammatical functions, such as tying sentences
together (―and,‖ ―or,‖ ―but‖) or indicating time (―when‖).
Syntactical rules: indicate how words can be combined to form phrases and
Deep structure: refers to the meaning of a sentence.
Surface structure: refers to how a sentence is worded.
Telegraphic speech: they are devoid of function morphemes and consist
mostly of content words.
Nativist theory: holds that language development is best explained as an
innate, biological capacity
The human brain is equipped with a language acquisition device (LAD)-a
collection of processes that facilitate language learning. Language
processes naturally emerge as the infant matures, provided the infant
receives adequate input to maintain the acquisition process.
A condition is known as genetic dysphasia, a syndrome characterized by an
inability to learn the grammatical structure of language despite having
otherwise normal intelligence
Aphasia, defined as difficulty in producing or comprehending language
Broca’s area is located in the left frontal cortex; it is involved in the
production of the sequential patterns in vocal and sign languages Key Concepts:
The three concepts below indicate what differs us from monkeys;
The complex structure of human language distinguishes it from simpler
Humans use words to refer to intangible things, such
as unicorn or democracy. W
We use language to name, categorize, and describe things to ourselves
when we think, which influences how knowledge is organized in our brains
We naturally develop the phonological rules depending on our language.
These rules combine with the phonemes and morphemes help our brain
recognize certain speech.
All languages have grammar rules that generally fall into two categories:
rules of morphology and rules of syntax.
Morophigical rules fall under two catrogerizies & with that there is function
morphemes and content.
F morphemes; referes to grammatical function which ties senteces together
and C morphemes referes to things and events.
With both of these it helps make the human language.
Babies are very good at picking up a new language in fact they by 9 – 12
months they know about 200 words by 4 years they have learned 10,000
which is 4-6 words per day.
Babies have this concept of overgeneralizing words which allows them to
make grammatically errors as they develop their vocabulary.
Overgeneralizations if children were learning through trial and error or simply
imitating what they hear. That is, it would be difficult to overgeneralize if
language development consisted solely of reinforced individual sentences or
Babies main issue with no understand
Parents don’t spend enough time teaching a child grammar.
children generate many more grammatical sentences than they ever hear.
This shows that children don’t just imitate; they learn the rules for generating
As you read earlier in this chapter, the errors children make when learning to
speak tend to be overgeneralizations of grammatical rules.
Direct Lecture 2 Notes:
Every animal can communicate a lot with there body language. Human language is different in a few ways, its powerful & it shapes us and it
comes with what language allows us to do.
Language is a process where once you learned it you can’t get it out.
Language I the reason why were here right now.
Receptive language for animals is understanding commands not necessary
Consciousness has develop animals to have memory and know which body
language to use in certain situation
The availability bias is that people are more likely to overestimate the
frequency of an event if they are better able to recall that event.
Lecture 3: Chapter 9 Thought & Rational Thinking 1/26/2013 9:12:00 PM
Concept refers to a mental representation that groups or categorizes shared
features of related objects, events, or other stimuli.
family resemblance—that is, features that appear to be characteristic of
category members but may not be possessed by every member
the conjunction fallacy because people think that two events are more likely
to occur together than either individual event. The fallacy is that with more
and more pieces of information, people think there’s a higher probability that
all are true.
representativeness heuristic—making a probability judgment by comparing
an object or event to a prototype of the object or event
framing effects, which occur when people give different answers to the
same problem depending on how the problem is phrased (or framed), can
influence the assignment of value.
sunk-cost fallacy, which occurs when people make decisions about a current
situation based on what they have previously invested in the situation
prospect theory, which argues that people choose to take on risk when
evaluating potential losses and avoid risks when evaluating potential gains.
frequency format hypothesis, our minds evolved to notice how frequently
things occur, not how likely they are to occur
means-ends analysis, which is a process of searching for the means or steps
to reduce the differences between the current situation and the desired
analogical problem solving, we attempt to solve a problem by finding a
similar problem with a known solution and applying that solution to the
Functional fixedness—the tendency to perceive the functions of objects as
fixed—is a process that constricts our thinking
Reasoning is a mental activity that consists of organizing information or beliefs
into a series of steps to reach conclusions.
Practical reasoning is figuring out what to do, or reasoning directed toward
action. Means-ends analysis is one kind of practical reasoning
Theoretical reasoning :Reasoning directed toward arriving at a belief.
Key Ideas: Prototype, which is the “best” or “most typical member” of the category
We all have traits but not all siblings’ processes all the same traits.
Exemplar theory holds that we make category judgments by comparing a
new instance with stored memories for other instances of the category
contrast to the prototype theory.
Exemplar theory is better way to explain traits because it allows you to take
into considerations all species of the same class. Where as prototype just
classify species with very similar traits.
Category-specific deficit, an inability to recognize objects that belong to a
particular category though the ability to recognize objects outside the
category is undisturbed.
Rational choice theory: We make decisions by determining how likely
something is to happen, judging the value of the outcome, and then
multiplying the two
Prospect theory states that people don’t always make decision that best
benefits them for example getting an apartment that living expenses give
you more money in your pocket.
Prospect theory states that people don’t always choose this decision.
These decision processes take place in two phases.
Why will most people take more risks to avoid losses than to make gains?
First, people simplify available information. So, in a task like choosing an
apartment, they tend to ignore a lot of potentially useful information
because apartments differ in so many ways (the closeness of restaurants, the
presence of a swimming pool, the color of the carpet, and so forth).