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Psychology (9,697)
PSYA02H3 (962)
Chapter

Language

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Department
Psychology
Course
PSYA02H3
Professor
Steve Joordens
Semester
Winter

Description
PrologueDo Animals Have Language y We dont really know if animals have languagebut there was a Chimpanzee named Washoe who was a female and learned sign language by the time she was 4 she had a vocab Of more than 130 signs previous attempts failed because chimps used signs not wordsbecause since Chimps dont have vocal cords they cant really produce complex soundsthey kind of leanred like children learn when they learn to sign y Languagesare flexible systems that use symbols to express meanings y Even though species communicate with each other it doesnt mean they have language ie moths release chemical signals when they wish to mate but you wouldnt really say they have language y After Washoe being able to learn sign language a lot of people have tried to teach primates to use sign language and people have realized that true verbal ability is a social behavior y Language helps us with memorywith abstract ideas because it encodes for words which we can manipulate according to logic rules y Psycholinguistics is a branch of psychology devoted to the study of verbal behavior when we speak read write listen etcSPEECH AND COMPREHENSIONPerception of Speechy We speak in a stream with pauses modulated by stress and changes in pitch y We write sentences as sets of words with spaces between thembut we say sentences as a string of soundsthus speech doesnt come to us as a series of individual words we must extract the words from a stream of speechy Recognition of Speech Soundso Like our ability to recognize faces visually the auditory system recognizes the patterns underlying speech rather than just the sounds themselves ie the emphasis put on certain words the accent the stress on certain words which words follow a certain word etc o Belin Zatorre and Ahad did a studyfigured out that the in the temporal lobe the auditory cortex is responsible for language processingalso the split brain operation shows us that the left hemisphere is more responsible fore analyzing detailed information of speechDetailed information usually begins with phoneme the minimum unit of sound that conveys meaning in a particular language such as the word pin consists of three phonemespin We can detect onset times which allows us to distinguish phonemesvoice onset time is the delay bw the initial sound of a constant such as the puffing sound of the constant p and the onset of vibration of the vocal cords y ie when u say pa for p and ba for b the difference in the delay of vocal cords is 006 seconds which allows us to distinguish between the constants y phenomic discrimination begin with auditory processing of the sensory differences and this occurs in both hemisphereso howeverScott Blank Rosen and Wise showed that the left cortex play a special role in recognizing special aspects of speech o Ganong then discovered that the perception of a phenome if disintguished by the words that follow itie if ift was played people would guess gift and if iss was played people would guess kissPhenomes combine to form morpheme which is the smallest unit of meaning in language The syntax of a particular language determines how phenomes can be combined to form morphemesie the word fastest contains two morphemesfast which is a free morpheme and est which is a bound morpheme bound morphemes cant stand on their own and must be attached to other morphemes to provide meaning y A syntax is the arrangement of words and phrases to create wellformed sentences in a language y Recognition of Words in Continuous Speech The Importance of Learning and Context o Larger units of speech are established by learning and experienceSanders Newport and Neville examined brain activity when people listened to a continuous string of soundsthe sounds were composed o short syllabic sounds spliced together such as a string babuputababjausttdutabaababthen if u asked the poepl to learn the word dutaba which is meaningless and the string of letters were presented again a special wave occurred called the N100 wave which occurs after the onset of a wordSanders noticed and her coworkers found that when people learned these nonsense words as words they showed the N100 response despite the fact that there were no additional auditory cues to segment the string of soundsIn addition to learning the units of speech we also learn its content Even though speech is filled with muffled sounds sloppy pronunciation we are able to recognize the sounds because of its context Context affects the perception of words through topdown processingother context KAI ffect word
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