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Journal of Memory and Language

Sara Finley
One of the major questions in the cognitive science of language is whether the perceptual and phonological motivations for the rules and patterns that govern the sounds of language are a part of the psychological reality of grammatical representations. This question is particularly important in the study of phonological patterns - systematic constraints on the representation of sounds, because phonological patterns tend to be grounded in phonetic constraints. This paper focuses on phonological metathesis, which occurs when two adjacent sounds switch positions (e...
February 2017: Journal of Memory and Language
Shelley Gray, Samuel Green, Mary Alt, Tiffany P Hogan, Trudy Kuo, Shara Brinkley, Nelson Cowan
This study investigated the structure of working memory in young school-age children by testing the fit of three competing theoretical models using a wide variety of tasks. The best fitting models were then used to assess the relationship between working memory and nonverbal measures of fluid reasoning (Gf) and visual processing (Gv) intelligence. One hundred sixty-eight English-speaking 7-9 year olds with typical development, from three states, participated. Results showed that Cowan's three-factor embedded processes model fit the data slightly better than Baddeley and Hitch's (1974) three-factor model (specified according to Baddeley, 1986) and decisively better than Baddeley's (2000) four-factor model that included an episodic buffer...
February 2017: Journal of Memory and Language
Tamar H Gollan, Matthew Goldrick
The current study investigated the roles of grammaticality and executive control on bilingual language selection by examining production speed and failures of language control, or intrusion errors (e.g., saying el instead of the), in young and aging bilinguals. Production of mixed-language connected speech was elicited by asking Spanish-English bilinguals to read aloud paragraphs that had mostly grammatical (conforming to naturally occurring constraints) or mostly ungrammatical (haphazard mixing) language switches, and low or high switching rate...
October 2016: Journal of Memory and Language
Viridiana L Benitez, Daniel Yurovsky, Linda B Smith
Three experiments investigated competition between word-object pairings in a cross-situational word-learning paradigm. Adults were presented with One-Word pairings, where a single word labeled a single object, and Two-Word pairings, where two words labeled a single object. In addition to measuring learning of these two pairing types, we measured competition between words that refer to the same object. When the word-object co-occurrences were presented intermixed in training (Experiment 1), we found evidence for direct competition between words that label the same referent...
October 2016: Journal of Memory and Language
Audrey K Kittredge, Gary S Dell
The language production and perception systems rapidly learn novel phonotactic constraints. In production, for example, producing syllables in which /f/ is restricted to onset position (e.g. as /h/ is in English) causes one's speech errors to mirror that restriction. We asked whether or not perceptual experience of a novel phonotactic distribution transfers to production. In three experiments, participants alternated hearing and producing strings of syllables. In the same condition, the production and perception trials followed identical phonotactics (e...
August 2016: Journal of Memory and Language
Kevin D Roon, Adamantios I Gafos
We offer a dynamical model of phonological planning that provides a formal instantiation of how the speech production and perception systems interact during online processing. The model is developed on the basis of evidence from an experimental task that requires concurrent use of both systems, the so-called response-distractor task in which speakers hear distractor syllables while they are preparing to produce required responses. The model formalizes how ongoing response planning is affected by perception and accounts for a range of results reported across previous studies...
August 2016: Journal of Memory and Language
Melinda Fricke, Judith F Kroll, Paola E Dussias
We exploit the unique phonetic properties of bilingual speech to ask how processes occurring during planning affect speech articulation, and whether listeners can use the phonetic modulations that occur in anticipation of a codeswitch to help restrict their lexical search to the appropriate language. An analysis of spontaneous bilingual codeswitching in the Bangor Miami Corpus (Deuchar et al., 2014) reveals that in anticipation of switching languages, Spanish-English bilinguals produce slowed speech rate and cross-language phonological influence on consonant voice onset time...
August 2016: Journal of Memory and Language
Esteban Buz, Michael K Tanenhaus, T Florian Jaeger
We ask whether speakers can adapt their productions when feedback from their interlocutors suggests that previous productions were perceptually confusable. To address this question, we use a novel web-based task-oriented paradigm for speech recording, in which participants produce instructions towards a (simulated) partner with naturalistic response times. We manipulate (1) whether a target word with a voiceless plosive (e.g., pill) occurs in the presence of a voiced competitor (bill) or an unrelated word (food) and (2) whether or not the simulated partner occasionally misunderstands the target word...
August 2016: Journal of Memory and Language
Sudha Arunachalam
This paper introduces a new experimental paradigm for studying children's real-time language processing of their parents' unscripted speech. Focusing on children's processing of referential expressions, or the phrases that parents used to label particular objects, we engaged dyads in a game in which parents labeled one of several objects displayed on a screen, and the child was to quickly identify it as their eye gaze was tracked. There were two conditions; one included a competitor object (e.g., the target was a striped umbrella and the display also included an umbrella with polka dots), while the other one did not (e...
June 1, 2016: Journal of Memory and Language
Ilker Yildirim, Judith Degen, Michael K Tanenhaus, T Florian Jaeger
Linguistic meaning has long been recognized to be highly context-dependent. Quantifiers like many and some provide a particularly clear example of context-dependence. For example, the interpretation of quantifiers requires listeners to determine the relevant domain and scale. We focus on another type of context-dependence that quantifiers share with other lexical items: talker variability. Different talkers might use quantifiers with different interpretations in mind. We used a web-based crowdsourcing paradigm to study participants' expectations about the use of many and some based on recent exposure...
April 1, 2016: Journal of Memory and Language
Tanja Roembke, Bob McMurray
Learning new words is difficult. In any naming situation, there are multiple possible interpretations of a novel word. Recent approaches suggest that learners may solve this problem by tracking co-occurrence statistics between words and referents across multiple naming situations (e.g. Yu & Smith, 2007), overcoming the ambiguity in any one situation. Yet, there remains debate around the underlying mechanisms. We conducted two experiments in which learners acquired eight word-object mappings using cross-situational statistics while eye-movements were tracked...
April 1, 2016: Journal of Memory and Language
Chelsea Voskuilen, Roger Ratcliff
Research examining models of memory has focused on differences in the shapes of ROC curves across tasks and has used these differences to argue for and against the existence of multiple memory processes. ROC functions are usually obtained from confidence judgments, but the reaction times associated with these judgments are rarely considered. The RTCON2 diffusion model for confidence judgments has previously been applied to data from an item recognition paradigm. It provided an alternative explanation for the shape of the z-ROC function based on how subjects set their response boundaries and these settings are also constrained by reaction times...
January 2016: Journal of Memory and Language
Charles Clifton, Lyn Frazier
Mini-discourses like (ia) seem slightly odd compared to their counterparts containing a conjunction (ib). (i) a. Speaker A: John or Bill left. Speaker B: Sam did too. b. Speaker A: John and Bill left. Speaker B: Sam did too. One possibility is that or in Speaker A's utterance in (ia) raises the potential Question Under Discussion (QUD) whether it was John or Bill who left and Speaker B's reply fails to address this QUD. A different possibility is that the epistemic state of the speaker of (ia) is somewhat unlikely or uneven: the speaker knows that someone left, and that it was John or Bill, but doesn't know which one...
January 1, 2016: Journal of Memory and Language
C J Brainerd, Zheng Wang, Valerie F Reyna, K Nakamura
Fuzzy-trace theory's assumptions about memory representation are cognitive examples of the familiar superposition property of physical quantum systems. When those assumptions are implemented in a formal quantum model (QEMc), they predict that episodic memory will violate the additive law of probability: If memory is tested for a partition of an item's possible episodic states, the individual probabilities of remembering the item as belonging to each state must sum to more than 1. We detected this phenomenon using two standard designs, item false memory and source false memory...
October 1, 2015: Journal of Memory and Language
Tuan Q Lam, Viorica Marian
In natural conversation, speakers often mention the same referents multiple times. While referents that have been previously mentioned are produced with less prominence than those that have not been mentioned, it is unclear whether prominence reduction is due to repetition of concepts, words, or a combination of the two. In the current study, we dissociate these sources of repetition by examining bilingual speakers, who have more than one word for the same concept across their two languages. Three groups of Korean-English bilinguals (balanced, English-dominant, and Korean-dominant) performed an event description task involving repetition of referents within a single language (i...
October 1, 2015: Journal of Memory and Language
Cassandra L Jacobs, Loretta K Yiu, Duane G Watson, Gary S Dell
Acoustic reduction for repeated words could be the result of articulation and motor practice (Lam & Watson, 2014), facilitated production (Kahn & Arnold, 2015; Gahl et al., 2012), or audience design and shared common ground (Galati & Brennan, 2010). We sought to narrow down what kind of facilitation leads to repetition reduction. Repetition could, in principle, facilitate production on a conceptual, lexical, phonological, articulatory, or acoustic level (Kahn & Arnold, 2015). We compared the durations of the second utterance of a target word when the initial production was aloud or silent...
October 1, 2015: Journal of Memory and Language
Elizabeth R Schotter, Michelle Lee, Michael Reiderman, Keith Rayner
Semantic preview benefit in reading is an elusive and controversial effect because empirical studies do not always (but sometimes) find evidence for it. Its presence seems to depend on (at least) the language being read, visual properties of the text (e.g., initial letter capitalization), the type of relationship between preview and target, and as shown here, semantic constraint generated by the prior sentence context. Schotter (2013) reported semantic preview benefit for synonyms, but not semantic associates when the preview/target was embedded in a neutral sentence context...
August 1, 2015: Journal of Memory and Language
Neal P Fox, Megan Reilly, Sheila E Blumstein
Two experiments examined the influence of phonologically similar neighbors on articulation of words' initial stop consonants in order to investigate the conditions under which lexically-conditioned phonetic variation arises. In Experiment 1, participants produced words in isolation. Results showed that the voice-onset time (VOT) of a target's initial voiceless stop was predicted by its overall neighborhood density, but not by its having a voicing minimal pair. In Experiment 2, participants read aloud the same targets after semantically predictive sentence contexts and after neutral sentence contexts...
August 1, 2015: Journal of Memory and Language
Laura J Batterink, Paul J Reber, Helen J Neville, Ken A Paller
Statistical learning allows learners to detect regularities in the environment and appears to emerge automatically as a consequence of experience. Statistical learning paradigms bear many similarities to those of artificial grammar learning and other types of implicit learning. However, whether learning effects in statistical learning tasks are driven by implicit knowledge has not been thoroughly examined. The present study addressed this gap by examining the role of implicit and explicit knowledge within the context of a typical auditory statistical learning paradigm...
August 1, 2015: Journal of Memory and Language
Thomas P Urbach, Katherine A DeLong, Marta Kutas
Language interpretation is often assumed to be incremental. However, our studies of quantifier expressions in isolated sentences found N400 event-related brain potential (ERP) evidence for partial but not full immediate quantifier interpretation (Urbach & Kutas, 2010). Here we tested similar quantifier expressions in pragmatically supporting discourse contexts (Alex was an unusual toddler. Most/Few kids prefer sweets/vegetables…) while participants made plausibility judgments (Experiment 1) or read for comprehension (Experiment 2)...
August 1, 2015: Journal of Memory and Language
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