Schmale, Rachel; Hollich, George; Seidl, Amanda
By their second birthday, children are beginning to map meaning to form with relative ease. One challenge for these developing abilities is separating information relevant to word identity (i.e. phonemic information) from irrelevant information (e.g. voice and foreign accent). Nevertheless, little is known about toddlers' abilities to ignore irrelevant phonetic detail when faced with the demanding task of word learning. In an experiment with English-learning toddlers, we examined the impact of foreign accent on word learning. Findings revealed that while toddlers aged 2 ; 6 successfully generalized newly learned words spoken by a Spanish-accented speaker and a native English speaker, success of those aged 2 ; 0 was restricted. Specifically, toddlers aged 2 ; 0 failed to generalize words when trained by the native English speaker and tested by the Spanish-accented speaker. Data suggest that exposure to foreign accent in training may promote generalization of newly learned forms. These findings are considered in the context of developmental changes in early word representations.
Scott P Johnson
Full Text Available Word-learning likely involves a multiplicity of components, some domain-general, others domain-specific. Against the background of recent studies that suggest that word-learning is domain-specific, we investigated the associative component of word-learning. Seven- and 14-month-old infants viewed a pair of events in which a monkey or a truck moved back and forth, accompanied by a sung syllable or a tone, matched for pitch. Following habituation, infants were presented with displays in which the visual-auditory pairings were preserved or switched, and looked longer at the switch events when exposure time was sufficient to learn the intermodal association. At 7 months, performance on speech and tones conditions was statistically identical; at 14 months, infants had begun to favor speech. Thus, the associative component of word-learning does not appear (in contrast to rule-learning, Marcus et al., 2007 to initially privilege speech.
Kjærbæk, Laila; Boeg Thomsen, Ditte; Lambertsen, Claus
Syllables play an important role in children’s early language acquisition, and children appear to rely on clear syllabic structures as a key to word acquisition (Vihman 1996; Oller 2000). However, not all languages present children with equally clear cues to syllabic structure, and since the spec......Syllables play an important role in children’s early language acquisition, and children appear to rely on clear syllabic structures as a key to word acquisition (Vihman 1996; Oller 2000). However, not all languages present children with equally clear cues to syllabic structure, and since...... acquisition therefore presents us with the opportunity to examine how children respond to the task of word learning when the input language offers less clear cues to syllabic structure than usually seen. To investigate the sound structure in Danish children’s lexical development, we need a model of syllable......-29 months. For the two children, the phonetic structure of the first ten words to occur is compared with that of the last ten words to occur before 30 months of age, and with that of ten words in between. Measures related to the sonority envelope, viz. sonority types and in particular sonority rises...
Jaswal, Vikram K.; Hansen, Mikkel
Children tend to infer that when a speaker uses a new label, the label refers to an unlabeled object rather than one they already know the label for. Does this inference reflect a default assumption that words are mutually exclusive? Or does it instead reflect the result of a pragmatic reasoning ...
McDonough, Colleen; Song, Lulu; Hirsh-Pasek, Kathy; Golinkoff, Roberta Michnick; Lannon, Robert
Nouns are generally easier to learn than verbs (e.g., Bornstein, 2005; Bornstein et al., 2004; Gentner, 1982; Maguire, Hirsh-Pasek, & Golinkoff, 2006). Yet, verbs appear in children's earliest vocabularies, creating a seeming paradox. This paper examines one hypothesis about the difference between noun and verb acquisition. Perhaps the advantage nouns have is not a function of grammatical form class but rather related to a word's imageability. Here, word imageability ratings and form class (nouns and verbs) were correlated with age of acquisition according to the MacArthur-Bates Communicative Development Inventory (CDI) (Fenson et al., 1994). CDI age of acquisition was negatively correlated with words' imageability ratings. Further, a word's imageability contributes to the variance of the word's age of acquisition above and beyond form class, suggesting that at the beginning of word learning, imageability might be a driving factor.
Full Text Available Although infants perceptually attune to native vowels and consonants well before 12 months, at 13–15 months, they have difficulty learning to associate novel words that differ by their initial consonant (e.g., BIN and DIN to their visual referents. However, this difficulty may not apply to all minimal-pair novel words. While Canadian English (CE 15-month-olds failed to respond to a switch from the newly learned word DEET to the novel nonword DOOT, they did notice a switch from DEET to DIT (Curtin, Fennell, & Escudero, 2009. Those authors argued that early word learners capitalize on large phonetic differences, seen in CE DEET–DIT, but not on smaller phonetic differences, as in CE DEET–DOOT. To assess this hypothesis, we tested Australian English (AusE 15-month-olds, as AusE has a smaller magnitude of phonetic difference in both novel word pairs. Two groups of infants were trained on the novel word DEET and tested on the vowel switches in DIT and DOOT, produced by an AusE female speaker or the same CE female speaker as in Curtin et al. (2009. If the size of the phonetic distinction plays a more central role than native accent experience in early word learning, AusE children should more easily recognize both of the unfamiliar but larger CE vowel switches than the more familiar but smaller AusE ones. The results support our phonetic-magnitude hypothesis: AusE children taught and tested with the CE-accented novel words looked longer to both of the switch test trials (DIT, DOOT than same test trials (DEET, while those who heard the AusE-accented tokens did not notice either switch. Implications of our findings for models of early word learning are discussed.
Le Corre, Mathieu; Li, Peggy; Huang, Becky H; Jia, Gisela; Carey, Susan
Previous studies showed that children learning a language with an obligatory singular/plural distinction (Russian and English) learn the meaning of the number word for one earlier than children learning Japanese, a language without obligatory number morphology (Barner, Libenson, Cheung, & Takasaki, 2009; Sarnecka, Kamenskaya, Yamana, Ogura, & Yudovina, 2007). This can be explained by differences in number morphology, but it can also be explained by many other differences between the languages and the environments of the children who were compared. The present study tests the hypothesis that the morphological singular/plural distinction supports the early acquisition of the meaning of the number word for one by comparing young English learners to age and SES matched young Mandarin Chinese learners. Mandarin does not have obligatory number morphology but is more similar to English than Japanese in many crucial respects. Corpus analyses show that, compared to English learners, Mandarin learners hear number words more frequently, are more likely to hear number words followed by a noun, and are more likely to hear number words in contexts where they denote a cardinal value. Two tasks show that, despite these advantages, Mandarin learners learn the meaning of the number word for one three to six months later than do English learners. These results provide the strongest evidence to date that prior knowledge of the numerical meaning of the distinction between singular and plural supports the acquisition of the meaning of the number word for one.
Kjærbæk, Laila; Boeg Thomsen, Ditte; Lambertsen, Claus;
acquisition therefore presents us with the opportunity to examine how children respond to the task of word learning when the input language offers less clear cues to syllabic structure than usually seen. To investigate the sound structure in Danish children’s lexical development, we need a model of syllable...
Højen, Anders; Nazzi, Thierry
Previous research showed that French-learning 16- or 20-month-olds could learn pairs of words that differed by a single consonantal but not vocalic feature. Danish has a richer vowel inventory than French, allowing for 31 phonological vowel contrasts, including vowel length and presence/absence o...
Yu, Chen; Smith, Linda B.
Many theories of early word learning begin with the uncertainty inherent to learning a word from its co-occurrence with a visual scene. However, the relevant visual scene for infant word learning is neither from the adult theorist's view nor the mature partner's view, but is rather from the learner's personal view. Here we show that when 18-month…
Larissa K Samuelson
Full Text Available Humans and objects, and thus social interactions about objects, exist within space. Words direct listeners' attention to specific regions of space. Thus, a strong correspondence exists between where one looks, one's bodily orientation, and what one sees. This leads to further correspondence with what one remembers. Here, we present data suggesting that children use associations between space and objects and space and words to link words and objects--space binds labels to their referents. We tested this claim in four experiments, showing that the spatial consistency of where objects are presented affects children's word learning. Next, we demonstrate that a process model that grounds word learning in the known neural dynamics of spatial attention, spatial memory, and associative learning can capture the suite of results reported here. This model also predicts that space is special, a prediction supported in a fifth experiment that shows children do not use color as a cue to bind words and objects. In a final experiment, we ask whether spatial consistency affects word learning in naturalistic word learning contexts. Children of parents who spontaneously keep objects in a consistent spatial location during naming interactions learn words more effectively. Together, the model and data show that space is a powerful tool that can effectively ground word learning in social contexts.
Baek, Min Jae; Kim, Hyun Jung; Kim, Sangyun
Among verbal memory tests, two that are commonly used to measure the ability of verbal memory function in cognitive impairment are story recall tests and word-list learning tests. However, research is limited regarding which test might be more sensitive in discriminating between normal cognitive aging and patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD) in the Korean population. The purpose of the current study was to compare the word-list learning test (Seoul Verbal Learning Test; SVLT) and the story recall test (Korean Story Recall Test; KSRT) to determine which test is more sensitive in discriminating between individuals with normal cognitive aging and patients with mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and early stage of AD in Korea. A total of 53 healthy adults, 127 patients with MCI, and 72 patients with early stage of AD participated in this study. The receiver-operating characteristic (ROC) curve and area under the curve (AUC) were evaluated to compare these two tests. The results showed that the AUC of the SVLT was significantly larger than the AUC of the KSRT in all three groups (healthy adults vs. MCI and early stage of AD; healthy adults vs. MCI; healthy adults vs. early stage of AD). However, in comparison of patients with MCI and early stage of AD, the AUC of SVLT and the AUC of KSRT were not significant. The word-list learning test is a more useful tool for examining verbal memory function for older adults in Korea than the story recall test.
Kuchinke, Lars; Krause, Beatrix; Fritsch, Nathalie; Briesemeister, Benny B
The emotional connotation of a word is known to shift the process of word recognition. Using the electroencephalographic event-related potentials (ERPs) approach it has been documented that early attentional processing of high-arousing negative words is shifted at a stage of processing where a presented word cannot have been fully identified. Contextual learning has been discussed to contribute to these effects. The present study shows that a manipulation of the familiarity with a word's shape interferes with these earliest emotional ERP effects. Presenting high-arousing negative and neutral words in a familiar or an unfamiliar font results in very early emotion differences only in case of familiar shapes, whereas later processing stages reveal similar emotional effects in both font conditions. Because these early emotion-related differences predict later behavioral differences, it is suggested that contextual learning of emotional valence comprises more visual features than previously expected to guide early visual-sensory processing.
With the widespread adoption of new college Englishtextbooks,vocabulary learning seems a more important taskthan ever before for college students.This paper is about aresearch on how to help students learn English words moremeaningfully and enlarge their vocabulary more efficiently.This paper first discusses word meaning,concept,andconcept network,then explores the associative network of wordsand their associations,which corresponds to English lexicalrelations.The lexical network can be realized onto a computer tobenefit students in their learning.
Conner, Peggy S.
A high percentage of individuals with dyslexia struggle to learn unfamiliar spoken words, creating a significant obstacle to foreign language learning after early childhood. The origin of spoken-word learning difficulties in this population, generally thought to be related to the underlying literacy deficit, is not well defined (e.g., Di Betta…
Vihman, Marilyn M
Phonological development is sometimes seen as a process of learning sounds, or forming phonological categories, and then combining sounds to build words, with the evidence taken largely from studies demonstrating 'perceptual narrowing' in infant speech perception over the first year of life. In contrast, studies of early word production have long provided evidence that holistic word learning may precede the formation of phonological categories. In that account, children begin by matching their existing vocal patterns to adult words, with knowledge of the phonological system emerging from the network of related word forms. Here I review evidence from production and then consider how the implicit and explicit learning mechanisms assumed by the complementary memory systems model might be understood as reconciling the two approaches.
Blythe, Richard A; Smith, Kenny
Language learners learn the meanings of many thousands of words, despite encountering them in complex environments where infinitely many meanings might be inferred by the learner as their true meaning. This problem of infinite referential uncertainty is often attributed to Willard Van Orman Quine. We provide a mathematical formalisation of an ideal cross-situational learner attempting to learn under infinite referential uncertainty, and identify conditions under which this can happen. As Quine's intuitions suggest, learning under infinite uncertainty is possible, provided that learners have some means of ranking candidate word meanings in terms of their plausibility; furthermore, our analysis shows that this ranking could in fact be exceedingly weak, implying that constraints allowing learners to infer the plausibility of candidate word meanings could also be weak.
Graf Estes, Katharine
The current research investigated how infants apply prior knowledge of environmental regularities to support new learning. The experiments tested whether infants could exploit experience with native language (English) phonotactic patterns to facilitate associating sounds with meanings during word learning. Infants (14-month-olds) heard fluent speech that contained cues for detecting target words; the target words were embedded in sequences that occur across word boundaries. A separate group heard the target words embedded without word boundary cues. Infants then participated in an object label learning task. With the opportunity to use native language patterns to segment the target words, infants subsequently learned the labels. Without this experience, infants failed. Novice word learners can take advantage of early learning about sounds to scaffold lexical development.
This study explores the relevance of multimedia application in relation to vocabulary acquisition in the classroom of Chinese as a foreign language. The herein depicted application refers to the computer-assisted implicit word-learning, wherein the Danish students built hypertexts to acquire...
Papafragou, Anna; Fairchild, Sarah; Cohen, Matthew L; Friedberg, Carlyn
During communication, hearers try to infer the speaker's intentions to be able to understand what the speaker means. Nevertheless, whether (and how early) preschoolers track their interlocutors' mental states is still a matter of debate. Furthermore, there is disagreement about how children's ability to consult a speaker's belief in communicative contexts relates to their ability to track someone's belief in non-communicative contexts. Here, we study young children's ability to successfully acquire a word from a speaker with a false belief; we also assess the same children's success on a traditional false belief attribution task. We show that the ability to consult the epistemic state of a speaker during word learning develops between the ages of three and five. We also show that false belief understanding in word-learning contexts proceeds similarly to standard belief-attribution contexts when the tasks are equated. Our data offer evidence for the development of mind-reading abilities during language acquisition.
Booth, Amy E.; Waxman, Sandra R.
In this paper we consider the perceptual and conceptual contributions that shape early word learning, using research on the "shape bias" as a case in point. In our view, conceptual, linguistic, social-pragmatic, and perceptual sources of information influence one another powerfully and continuously in the service of word learning throughout…
Davis, Matthew H.; Di Betta, Anna Maria; Macdonald, Mark J. E.; Gaskell, Gareth
Two experiments explored the neural mechanisms underlying the learning and consolidation of novel spoken words. In Experiment 1, participants learned two sets of novel words on successive days. A subsequent recognition test revealed high levels of familiarity for both sets. However, a lexical decision task showed that only novel words learned on…
Ramscar, Michael; Dye, Melody; Klein, Joseph
The question of how children learn the meanings of words has long puzzled philosophers and psychologists. As Quine famously pointed out, simply hearing a word in context reveals next to nothing about its meaning. How then do children learn to understand and use words correctly? Here, we show how learning theory can offer an elegant solution to this seemingly intractable puzzle in language acquisition. From it, we derived formal predictions about word learning in situations of Quinean ambiguity, and subsequently tested our predictions on toddlers, undergraduates, and developmental psychologists. The toddlers' performance was consistent both with our predictions and with the workings of implicit mechanisms that can facilitate the learning of meaningful lexical systems. Adults adopted a markedly different and likely suboptimal strategy. These results suggest one explanation for why early word learning can appear baffling: Adult intuitions may be a poor source of insight into how children learn.
Tillman, Katharine A; Barner, David
Children use time words like minute and hour early in development, but take years to acquire their precise meanings. Here we investigate whether children assign meaning to these early usages, and if so, how. To do this, we test their interpretation of seven time words: second, minute, hour, day, week, month, and year. We find that preschoolers infer the orderings of time words (e.g., hour>minute), but have little to no knowledge of the absolute durations they encode. Knowledge of absolute duration is learned much later in development - many years after children first start using time words in speech - and in many children does not emerge until they have acquired formal definitions for the words. We conclude that associating words with the perception of duration does not come naturally to children, and that early intuitive meanings of time words are instead rooted in relative orderings, which children may infer from their use in speech.
Balass, M.; Perfetti, C.A.; Nelson, J.R.
Adults of varying reading comprehension skill learned a set of previously unknown rare English words (e.g., gloaming) in three different learning conditions in which the type of word knowledge was manipulated. The words were presented in one of three conditions: (1) orthography-to-meaning (no phonol
Ferreiro, Emilia; Pontecorvo, Clotilde
Examines the difficulties children face in word segmentation in early writings. Rules about word separation have evolved over many years and are ow normative in the languages these children are trying to write: Italian, Portuguese, Spanish. Children were asked to write a story well-known in all three cultures. Quantitative analysis was done of…
Kim, Namhee; Davis, Barbara L
The goal of this study was to evaluate movement-based principles for understanding early speech output patterns. Consonant repetition patterns within children's actual productions of word forms were analyzed using spontaneous speech data from 10 typically developing American-English learning children between 12 and 36 months of age. Place of articulation, word level patterns, and developmental trends in CVC and CVCV repeated word forms were evaluated. Labial and coronal place repetitions dominated. Regressive repetition (e.g., [gag] for "dog") occurred frequently in CVC but not in CVCV word forms. Consonant repetition decreased over time. However, the children produced sound types available reported as being within young children's production system capabilities in consonant repetitions in all time periods. Findings suggest that a movement-based approach can provide a framework for comprehensively characterizing consonant place repetition patterns in early speech development.
Yoshida, Katherine; Rhemtulla, Mijke; Vouloumanos, Athena
The roles of linguistic, cognitive, and social-pragmatic processes in word learning are well established. If statistical mechanisms also contribute to word learning, they must interact with these processes; however, there exists little evidence for such mechanistic synergy. Adults use co-occurrence statistics to encode speech-object pairings with…
Riley, Kristine Grohne; McGregor, Karla K.
Purpose: To determine the effects of noise and speech style on word learning in typically developing school-age children. Method: Thirty-one participants ages 9;0 (years;months) to 10;11 attempted to learn 2 sets of 8 novel words and their referents. They heard all of the words 13 times each within meaningful narrative discourse. Signal-to-noise…
Vihman, Marilyn May; DePaolis, Rory A.; Davis, Barbara L.
Analyzed vocalizations/verbalizations from children acquiring English or French in later single-word period to identify trochaic bias. Found that neither language's vocalizations were exclusively trochaic. French/English differences in iambic productions and acoustic realization of accent were traceable to adult input. Distribution of trochaic and…
Frauke van der Ven; Atsuko Takashima; Eliane Segers; Ludo Verhoeven
According to the complementary learning systems (CLS) account of word learning, novel words are rapidly acquired (learning system 1), but slowly integrated into the mental lexicon (learning system 2). This two-step learning process has been shown to apply to novel word forms. In this study, we investigated whether novel word meanings are also gradually integrated after acquisition by measuring the extent to which newly learned words were able to prime semantically related words at two differe...
Junge, Caroline; Cutler, Anne
Recent behavioral and electrophysiological evidence has highlighted the long-term importance for language skills of an early ability to recognize words in continuous speech. We here present further tests of this long-term link in the form of follow-up studies conducted with two (separate) groups of
Clark, E V; Grossman, J B
The present study tested the hypothesis that children as young as two use what adults tell them about meaning relations when they make inferences about new words. 18 two-year-olds (mean age 2;2) and 18 three-year-olds (mean age 3;2) learned two new terms (a) with instructions either (i) to treat one term as a superordinate to the other, or (ii) to replace one term with another; and (b) with no instruction given about how two new words might be related. Children were attentive to both kinds of instructions or pragmatic directions, and made use of them in their word-learning. When they received no instruction relating the two new words, they resorted to a range of coping strategies to assign and relate meanings to each other. These findings support the view that children's learning of new word meanings is guided by the pragmatic directions adults offer.
Højen, Anders; Nazzi, Thierry
The present study explored whether the phonological bias favoring consonants found in French-learning infants and children when learning new words (Havy & Nazzi, 2009; Nazzi, 2005) is language-general, as proposed by Nespor, Peña and Mehler (2003), or varies across languages, perhaps as a functio...
Shneidman, Laura A; Arroyo, Michelle E; Levine, Susan C; Goldin-Meadow, Susan
The talk children hear from their primary caregivers predicts the size of their vocabularies. But children who spend time with multiple individuals also hear talk that others direct to them, as well as talk not directed to them at all. We investigated the effect of linguistic input on vocabulary acquisition in children who routinely spent time with one vs. multiple individuals. For all children, the number of words primary caregivers directed to them at age 2 ; 6 predicted vocabulary size at age 3 ; 6. For children who spent time with multiple individuals, child-directed words from all household members also predicted later vocabulary and accounted for more variance in vocabulary than words from primary caregivers alone. Interestingly, overheard words added no predictive value to the model. These findings suggest that speech directed to children is important for early word learning, even in households where a sizable proportion of input comes from overheard speech.
Vouloumanos, Athena; Werker, Janet F.
In everyday word learning words are only sometimes heard in the presence of their referent, making the acquisition of novel words a particularly challenging task. The current study investigated whether children (18-month-olds who are novice word learners) can track the statistics of co-occurrence between words and objects to learn novel mappings…
Havy, Mélanie; Bouchon, Camillia; Nazzi, Thierry
Infants have remarkable abilities to learn several languages. However, phonological acquisition in bilingual infants appears to vary depending on the phonetic similarities or differences of their two native languages. Many studies suggest that learning contrasts with different realizations in the two languages (e.g., the /p/, /t/, /k/ stops have…
Ven, F. van der; Takashima, A.; Segers, P.C.J.; Verhoeven, L.T.W.
According to the complementary learning systems (CLS) account of word learning, novel words are rapidly acquired (learning system 1), but slowly integrated into the mental lexicon (learning system 2). This two-step learning process has been shown to apply to novel word forms. In this study, we inves
Marchetto, Erika; Bonatti, Luca L
In order to acquire language, infants must extract its building blocks-words-and master the rules governing their legal combinations from speech. These two problems are not independent, however: words also have internal structure. Thus, infants must extract two kinds of information from the same speech input. They must find the actual words of their language. Furthermore, they must identify its possible words, that is, the sequences of sounds that, being morphologically well formed, could be words. Here, we show that infants' sensitivity to possible words appears to be more primitive and fundamental than their ability to find actual words. We expose 12- and 18-month-old infants to an artificial language containing a conflict between statistically coherent and structurally coherent items. We show that 18-month-olds can extract possible words when the familiarization stream contains marks of segmentation, but cannot do so when the stream is continuous. Yet, they can find actual words from a continuous stream by computing statistical relationships among syllables. By contrast, 12-month-olds can find possible words when familiarized with a segmented stream, but seem unable to extract statistically coherent items from a continuous stream that contains minimal conflicts between statistical and structural information. These results suggest that sensitivity to word structure is in place earlier than the ability to analyze distributional information. The ability to compute nontrivial statistical relationships becomes fully effective relatively late in development, when infants have already acquired a considerable amount of linguistic knowledge. Thus, mechanisms for structure extraction that do not rely on extensive sampling of the input are likely to have a much larger role in language acquisition than general-purpose statistical abilities.
This dissertation presents several new methods of supervised and unsupervised learning of word sense disambiguation models. The supervised methods focus on performing model searches through a space of probabilistic models, and the unsupervised methods rely on the use of Gibbs Sampling and the Expectation Maximization (EM) algorithm. In both the supervised and unsupervised case, the Naive Bayesian model is found to perform well. An explanation for this success is presented in terms of learning rates and bias-variance decompositions.
Rosa Kit Wan Kwok
Full Text Available We investigated word learning in university and college students with a diagnosis of dyslexia and in typically-reading controls. Participants read aloud short (4-letter and longer (7-letter nonwords as quickly as possible. The nonwords were repeated across 10 blocks, using a different random order in each block. Participants returned 7 days later and repeated the experiment. Accuracy was high in both groups. The dyslexics were substantially slower than the controls at reading the nonwords throughout the experiment. They also showed a larger length effect, indicating less effective decoding skills. Learning was demonstrated by faster reading of the nonwords across repeated presentations and by a reduction in the difference in reading speeds between shorter and longer nonwords. The dyslexics required more presentations of the nonwords before the length effect became non-significant, only showing convergence in reaction times between shorter and longer items in the second testing session where controls achieved convergence part-way through the first session. Participants also completed a psychological test battery assessing reading and spelling, vocabulary, phonological awareness, working memory, nonverbal ability and motor speed. The dyslexics performed at a similar level to the controls on nonverbal ability but significantly less well on all the other measures. Regression analyses found that decoding ability, measured as the speed of reading aloud nonwords when they were presented for the first time, was predicted by a composite of word reading and spelling scores (‘literacy’. Word learning was assessed in terms of the improvement in naming speeds over 10 blocks of training. Learning was predicted by vocabulary and working memory scores, but not by literacy, phonological awareness, nonverbal ability or motor speed. The results show that young dyslexic adults have problems both in pronouncing novel words and in learning new written words.
Yurovsky, Daniel; Smith, Linda B; Yu, Chen
A key question in early word learning is how children cope with the uncertainty in natural naming events. One potential mechanism for uncertainty reduction is cross-situational word learning - tracking word/object co-occurrence statistics across naming events. But empirical and computational analyses of cross-situational learning have made strong assumptions about the nature of naming event ambiguity, assumptions that have been challenged by recent analyses of natural naming events. This paper shows that learning from ambiguous natural naming events depends on perspective. Natural naming events from parent-child interactions were recorded from both a third-person tripod-mounted camera and from a head-mounted camera that produced a 'child's-eye' view. Following the human simulation paradigm, adults were asked to learn artificial language labels by integrating across the most ambiguous of these naming events. Significant learning was found only from the child's perspective, pointing to the importance of considering statistical learning from an embodied perspective.
Full Text Available This study explores the relationship between word learning and conceptual organization for preschool-aged children. We proposed a bidirectional model in which increases in word learning lead to increases in taxonomic organization, which, in turn, leads to further increases in word learning. In order to examine this model, we recruited 104 4-year olds from Head Start classrooms; 52 children participated in a two-week training program, and 52 children were in a control group. Results indicated that children in the training program learned more words and were more likely to sort taxonomically than children in the control condition. Furthermore, the number of words learned over the training period predicted the extent to which children categorized taxonomically. Additionally, this ability to categorize taxonomically predicted the number of words learned outside the training program, over and above the number of words learned in the program. These results suggest a bi-directional relationship between conceptual organization and word learning.
Peñaloza, Claudia; Mirman, Daniel; Tuomiranta, Leena; Benetello, Annalisa; Heikius, Ida-Maria; Järvinen, Sonja; Majos, Maria C; Cardona, Pedro; Juncadella, Montserrat; Laine, Matti; Martin, Nadine; Rodríguez-Fornells, Antoni
Recent research suggests that some people with aphasia preserve some ability to learn novel words and to retain them in the long-term. However, this novel word learning ability has been studied only in the context of single word-picture pairings. We examined the ability of people with chronic aphasia to learn novel words using a paradigm that presents new word forms together with a limited set of different possible visual referents and requires the identification of the correct word-object associations on the basis of online feedback. We also studied the relationship between word learning ability and aphasia severity, word processing abilities, and verbal short-term memory (STM). We further examined the influence of gross lesion location on new word learning. The word learning task was first validated with a group of forty-five young adults. Fourteen participants with chronic aphasia were administered the task and underwent tests of immediate and long-term recognition memory at 1 week. Their performance was compared to that of a group of fourteen matched controls using growth curve analysis. The learning curve and recognition performance of the aphasia group was significantly below the matched control group, although above-chance recognition performance and case-by-case analyses indicated that some participants with aphasia had learned the correct word-referent mappings. Verbal STM but not word processing abilities predicted word learning ability after controlling for aphasia severity. Importantly, participants with lesions in the left frontal cortex performed significantly worse than participants with lesions that spared the left frontal region both during word learning and on the recognition tests. Our findings indicate that some people with aphasia can preserve the ability to learn a small novel lexicon in an ambiguous word-referent context. This learning and recognition memory ability was associated with verbal STM capacity, aphasia severity and the integrity
Peñaloza, Claudia; Mirman, Daniel; Tuomiranta, Leena; Benetello, Annalisa; Heikius, Ida-Maria; Järvinen, Sonja; Majos, Maria C.; Cardona, Pedro; Juncadella, Montserrat; Laine, Matti; Martin, Nadine; Rodríguez-Fornells, Antoni
Recent research suggests that some people with aphasia preserve some ability to learn novel words and to retain them in the long-term. However, this novel word learning ability has been studied only in the context of single word-picture pairings. We examined the ability of people with chronic aphasia to learn novel words using a paradigm that presents new word forms together with a limited set of different possible visual referents and requires the identification of the correct word-object associations on the basis of online feedback. We also studied the relationship between word learning ability and aphasia severity, word processing abilities, and verbal short-term memory (STM). We further examined the influence of gross lesion location on new word learning. The word learning task was first validated with a group of forty-five young adults. Fourteen participants with chronic aphasia were administered the task and underwent tests of immediate and long-term recognition memory at 1 week. Their performance was compared to that of a group of fourteen matched controls using growth curve analysis. The learning curve and recognition performance of the aphasia group was significantly below the matched control group, although above-chance recognition performance and case-by-case analyses indicated that some participants with aphasia had learned the correct word-referent mappings. Verbal STM but not word processing abilities predicted word learning ability after controlling for aphasia severity. Importantly, participants with lesions in the left frontal cortex performed significantly worse than participants with lesions that spared the left frontal region both during word learning and on the recognition tests. Our findings indicate that some people with aphasia can preserve the ability to learn a small novel lexicon in an ambiguous word-referent context. This learning and recognition memory ability was associated with verbal STM capacity, aphasia severity and the integrity
The ease with which we process the written word belies its complexities and makes it easy to forget that it is a highly skilled behaviour and one that takes time to master. In this paper, I argue that our ability to read words has its roots in our capacity for language. Good progress has been made towards understanding how children discover the systematic relationship between speech sounds and the letters used to represents those sounds, very early in reading development. However, we understand much less about how beginning readers become skilled readers. To understand this, I argue that it is important to view the visual word recognition system within the context of a broader language system, one that incorporates a rich network of semantic and episodic knowledge.
Lederberg, A R; Prezbindowski, A K; Spencer, P E
Word-learning skills of 19 deaf/hard-of-hearing preschoolers were assessed by observing their ability to learn new words in two contexts. The first context required the use of a novel mapping strategy (i.e., making the inference that a novel word refers to a novel object) to learn the new words. The second context assessed the ability to learn new words after minimal exposure when reference was explicitly established. The children displayed three levels of word-learning skills. Eleven children learned words in both contexts. Five were able to learn new words rapidly only when reference was explicitly established. Two children did not learn new words rapidly in either context. The latter seven children were followed longitudinally. All children eventually acquired the ability to learn new words in both contexts. The deaf children's word-learning abilities were related to the size of their vocabularies. The present study suggests that word-learning strategies are acquired even when children are severely delayed in their language development and they learn language in an atypical environment.
Escudero, Paola; Mulak, Karen E.; Vlach, Haley A.
Infants often hear new words in the context of more than one candidate referent. In cross-situational word learning (XSWL), word-object mappings are determined by tracking co-occurrences of words and candidate referents across multiple learning events. Research demonstrates that infants can learn words in XSWL paradigms, suggesting that it is a viable model of real-world word learning. However, these studies have all presented infants with words that have no or minimal phonological overlap (e.g., BLICKET and GAX). Words often contain some degree of phonological overlap, and it is unknown whether infants can simultaneously encode fine phonological detail while learning words via XSWL. We tested 12-, 15-, 17-, and 20-month-olds’ XSWL of eight words that, when paired, formed non-minimal pairs (MPs; e.g., BON–DEET) or MPs (e.g., BON–TON, DEET–DIT). The results demonstrated that infants are able to learn word-object mappings and encode them with sufficient phonetic detail as to identify words in both non-minimal and MP contexts. Thus, this work suggests that infants are able to simultaneously discriminate phonetic differences between words and map words to referents in an implicit learning paradigm such as XSWL. PMID:27708605
Sera, Maria D.; Cole, Caitlin A.; Oromendia, Mercedes; Koenig, Melissa A.
Studying how children learn words in a foreign language can shed light on how language learning changes with development. In one experiment, we examined whether three-, four-, and five-year-olds could learn and remember words for familiar and unfamiliar objects in their native English and a foreign language. All age groups could learn and remember…
Masrai, Ahmed; Milton, James
This study investigates word difficulty and learning among learners of English as a foreign language (EFL) in Saudi Arabia. Difficulty factors examined in the study include repetition of words in learners' EFL textbooks, word length and parts of speech, and adds a further consideration which is underexplored in the literature; word translation…
McLeod, Angela N.; McDade, Hiram L.
This investigation examined the ability of 44 preschool children to acquire novel words embedded in storybook contexts. Previous investigations of word learning have typically consisted of novel words for which synonyms exist. It is argued that the acquisition of unfamiliar words that refer to existing concepts that already have labels is not…
Hamada, Megumi; Goya, Hideki
This study investigated the role of syllable structure in L2 auditory word learning. Based on research on cross-linguistic variation of speech perception and lexical memory, it was hypothesized that Japanese L1 learners of English would learn English words with an open-syllable structure without consonant clusters better than words with a…
Frauke van der Ven
Full Text Available According to the complementary learning systems (CLS account of word learning, novel words are rapidly acquired (learning system 1, but slowly integrated into the mental lexicon (learning system 2. This two-step learning process has been shown to apply to novel word forms. In this study, we investigated whether novel word meanings are also gradually integrated after acquisition by measuring the extent to which newly learned words were able to prime semantically related words at two different time points. In addition, we investigated whether modality at study modulates this integration process. Sixty-four adult participants studied novel words together with written or spoken definitions. These words did not prime semantically related words directly following study, but did so after a 24-hour delay. This significant increase in the magnitude of the priming effect suggests that semantic integration occurs over time. Overall, words that were studied with a written definition showed larger priming effects, suggesting greater integration for the written study modality. Although the process of integration, reflected as an increase in the priming effect over time, did not significantly differ between study modalities, words studied with a written definition showed the most prominent positive effect after a 24-hour delay. Our data suggest that semantic integration requires time, and that studying in written format benefits semantic integration more than studying in spoken format. These findings are discussed in light of the CLS theory of word learning.
van der Ven, Frauke; Takashima, Atsuko; Segers, Eliane; Verhoeven, Ludo
According to the complementary learning systems (CLS) account of word learning, novel words are rapidly acquired (learning system 1), but slowly integrated into the mental lexicon (learning system 2). This two-step learning process has been shown to apply to novel word forms. In this study, we investigated whether novel word meanings are also gradually integrated after acquisition by measuring the extent to which newly learned words were able to prime semantically related words at two different time points. In addition, we investigated whether modality at study modulates this integration process. Sixty-four adult participants studied novel words together with written or spoken definitions. These words did not prime semantically related words directly following study, but did so after a 24-hour delay. This significant increase in the magnitude of the priming effect suggests that semantic integration occurs over time. Overall, words that were studied with a written definition showed larger priming effects, suggesting greater integration for the written study modality. Although the process of integration, reflected as an increase in the priming effect over time, did not significantly differ between study modalities, words studied with a written definition showed the most prominent positive effect after a 24-hour delay. Our data suggest that semantic integration requires time, and that studying in written format benefits semantic integration more than studying in spoken format. These findings are discussed in light of the CLS theory of word learning.
Full Text Available A model of syntactic development proposes that children’s very first word-combinations are already generated via productive rules that express in syntactic form the relation between a predicate word and its semantic argument. An alternative hypothesis is that they learn frozen chunks. In Study 1 we analyzed a large sample of young children’s early two-word sentences comprising of verbs with direct objects. A majority of objects were generated by pronouns but a third of children’s sentences used bare common nouns as objects. We checked parents’ twoword long sentences of verbs with objects and found almost no bare common nouns. Children cannot have copied sentences with bare noun objects from parents’ two-word long sentences as frozen chunks. In Study 2 we raised the possibility that children’s early sentences with bare nouns are rote-learned ‘telegraphic speech’, acquired as unanalyzed frozen chunks from longer input sentences due to perceptual problem to hear the unstressed determiners. To test this explanation, we tested the children’s speech corpus for evidence that they avoid determiners in their word-combinations. The results showed that they do not; in fact they generate very many determiner-common noun combinations as two-word utterances. The findings suggest that children produce their early word-combinations of the core-grammar type by a productive rule that maps the predicate-argument relations of verbs and their semantic arguments to headdependent syntax, and not as frozen word-combinations. Children mostly learn to use indexical expressions such as pronouns to express the variable semantic arguments of verbs as context dependent; they also employ bare common nouns to express specific values of the arguments. The earliest word-combinations demonstrate that children understand that syntax is built on the predicate-argument relations of words and use this insight to produce their early sentences.
Dittinger, Eva; Barbaroux, Mylène; D'Imperio, Mariapaola; Jäncke, Lutz; Elmer, Stefan; Besson, Mireille
On the basis of previous results showing that music training positively influences different aspects of speech perception and cognition, the aim of this series of experiments was to test the hypothesis that adult professional musicians would learn the meaning of novel words through picture-word associations more efficiently than controls without music training (i.e., fewer errors and faster RTs). We also expected musicians to show faster changes in brain electrical activity than controls, in particular regarding the N400 component that develops with word learning. In line with these hypotheses, musicians outperformed controls in the most difficult semantic task. Moreover, although a frontally distributed N400 component developed in both groups of participants after only a few minutes of novel word learning, in musicians this frontal distribution rapidly shifted to parietal scalp sites, as typically found for the N400 elicited by known words. Finally, musicians showed evidence for better long-term memory for novel words 5 months after the main experimental session. Results are discussed in terms of cascading effects from enhanced perception to memory as well as in terms of multifaceted improvements of cognitive processing due to music training. To our knowledge, this is the first report showing that music training influences semantic aspects of language processing in adults. These results open new perspectives for education in showing that early music training can facilitate later foreign language learning. Moreover, the design used in the present experiment can help to specify the stages of word learning that are impaired in children and adults with word learning difficulties.
Stamer, Melissa K.; Vitevitch, Michael S.
Neighborhood density--the number of words that sound similar to a given word (Luce & Pisoni, 1998)--influences word learning in native English-speaking children and adults (Storkel, 2004; Storkel, Armbruster & Hogan, 2006): novel words with many similar sounding English words (i.e., dense neighborhood) are learned more quickly than novel words…
Ortigue, Stephanie; Michel, Christoph M; Murray, Micah M; Mohr, Christine; Carbonnel, Serge; Landis, Theodor
Functional electrical neuroimaging investigated incidental emotional word processing. Previous research suggests that the brain may differentially respond to the emotional content of linguistic stimuli pre-lexically (i.e., before distinguishing that these stimuli are words). We investigated the spatiotemporal brain mechanisms of this apparent paradox and in particular whether the initial differentiation of emotional stimuli is marked by different brain generator configurations using high-density, event-related potentials. Such would support the existence of specific cerebral resources dedicated to emotional word processing. A related issue concerns the possibility of right-hemispheric specialization in the processing of emotional stimuli. Thirteen healthy men performed a go/no-go lexical decision task with bilateral word/non-word or non-word/non-word stimulus pairs. Words included equal numbers of neutral and emotional stimuli, but subjects made no explicit discrimination along this dimension. Emotional words appearing in the right visual field (ERVF) yielded the best overall performance, although the difference between emotional and neutral words was larger for left than for right visual field presentations. Electrophysiologically, ERVF presentations were distinguished from all other conditions over the 100-140 ms period by a distinct scalp topography, indicative of different intracranial generator configurations. A distributed linear source estimation (LAURA) of this distinct scalp potential field revealed bilateral lateral-occipital sources with a right hemisphere current density maximum. These data support the existence of a specialized brain network triggered by the emotional connotation of words at a very early processing stage.
Snoeren, Natalie D.; Gaskell, M. Gareth; Di Betta, Anna Maria
The present study investigated the mechanisms underlying perceptual compensation for assimilation in novel words. During training, participants learned canonical versions of novel spoken words (e.g., "decibot") presented in isolation. Following exposure to a second set of novel words the next day, participants carried out a phoneme…
Mostow, Jack; Gates, Donna; Ellison, Ross; Goutam, Rahul
Vocabulary knowledge is crucial to literacy development and academic success. Previous research has shown learning the meaning of a word requires encountering it in diverse informative contexts. In this work, we try to identify "nutritious" contexts for a word--contexts that help students build a rich mental representation of the word's…
... Early Learning AGENCY: Office of the Secretary, Department of Education. ACTION: Notice of public..., is seeking input from State agencies responsible for early learning and development, families..., researchers of early learning, stakeholders who work with early learning and development for young...
Bijeljac-Babic, Ranka; Nassurally, Khatijah; Havy, Mélanie; Nazzi, Thierry
The present study used an object manipulation task to explore whether infants are able to learn words in a foreign language. French-learning 20-month-olds, who were taught new words in either English or French by a bilingual French-English speaker, succeeded in both language conditions.
Steele, Sara C.
This study examined and compared patterns of errors in the oral definitions of newly learned words. Fifteen 9- to 11-year-old children with language learning disability (LLD) and 15 typically developing age-matched peers inferred the meanings of 20 nonsense words from four novel reading passages. After reading, children provided oral definitions…
Saylor, Megan M.; Carroll, C. Brooke
The present study investigated three-year-olds' sensitivity to direct and indirect cues to others' knowledge states for word learning purposes. Children were given either direct, physical cues to knowledge or indirect, verbal cues to knowledge. Preschoolers revealed a better ability to learn words from a speaker following direct, physical cues to…
Blewitt, Pamela; Langan, Ryan
Shared book reading (SBR) is a valuable context for word learning during early childhood, and adults' extratextual talk boosts the vocabulary building potential of SBR. We propose that the benefits of such talk depend largely on a reader's success in promoting children's active engagement (attention and interest) during SBR. When readers ask children questions about new words, especially if they respond to children in a prompt, contingent, and appropriate (positive) manner, this verbal responsiveness functions as an effective engagement strategy. We randomly assigned 3- and 4-year-olds to three reading conditions (low, moderate, and high) distinguished by the degree to which the reader used extratextual engagement strategies, including verbal responsiveness. Despite equal exposure to unfamiliar target words, children's performance improved on two measures of word learning across the three conditions, demonstrating the value of engagement strategies in extratextual talk. This study provides a strong experimental demonstration that adult verbal responsiveness directly benefits preschoolers' word learning.
Vihman, Marilyn May
Analysis of the first 4 months of word combinations recorded for an Estonian-English learning child suggests that meaning-based generativity may play a role in this important transition in that mixed language utterances, sequence reversals, and errors revealing early attempts at analysis provide clear evidence that distributional learning alone…
Floccia, Caroline; Nazzi, Thierry; Austin, Keith; Arreckx, Frederique; Goslin, Jeremy
To investigate the interaction between segmental and supra-segmental stress-related information in early word learning, two experiments were conducted with 20- to 24-month-old English-learning children. In an adaptation of the object categorization study designed by Nazzi and Gopnik (2001), children were presented with pairs of novel objects whose…
Wasik, Barbara A.; Karweit, Nancy; Bond, Mary Alice; Woodruff, Lannette Burns; Jaeger, Gary; Adee, Sarah
Summarizes research conducted by the Early Learning Program during the first 5 years of operation of the Center for Research on the Education of Children Placed At Risk (CRESPAR). Describes two integrated areas of research: practices that promote the development of language and literacy skills and systemic issues of school policy and teacher…
Casas, Bernardino; Ferrer-i-Cancho, Ramon; Hernández-Fernández, Antoni; Baixeries, Jaume
Here we study polysemy as a potential learning bias in vocabulary learning in children. We employ a massive set of transcriptions of conversations between children and adults in English, to analyze the evolution of mean polysemy in the words produced by children whose ages range between 10 and 60 months. Our results show that mean polysemy in children increases over time in two phases, i.e. a fast growth till the 31st month followed by a slower tendency towards adult speech. In contrast, no dependency with time is found in adults. This suggests that children have a preference for non-polysemous words in their early stages of vocabulary acquisition. Our hypothesis is twofold: (a) polysemy is a standalone bias or (b) polysemy is a side-effect of other biases. Interestingly, the bias for low polysemy described above weakens when controlling for syntactic category (noun, verb, adjective or adverb). The pattern of the evolution of polysemy suggests that both hypotheses may apply to some extent, and that (b) would ...
Wagner, Katie; Kimura, Katherine; Cheung, Pierina; Barner, David
Young children typically take between 18 months and 2 years to learn the meanings of number words. In the present study, we investigated this developmental trajectory in bilingual preschoolers to examine the relative contributions of two factors in number word learning: (1) the construction of numerical concepts, and (2) the mapping of language specific words onto these concepts. We found that children learn the meanings of small number words (i.e., one, two, and three) independently in each language, indicating that observed delays in learning these words are attributable to difficulties in mapping words to concepts. In contrast, children generally learned to accurately count larger sets (i.e., five or greater) simultaneously in their two languages, suggesting that the difficulty in learning to count is not tied to a specific language. We also replicated previous studies that found that children learn the counting procedure before they learn its logic - i.e., that for any natural number, n, the successor of n in the count list denotes the cardinality n+1. Consistent with past studies, we found that children's knowledge of successors is first acquired incrementally. In bilinguals, we found that this knowledge exhibits item-specific transfer between languages, suggesting that the logic of the positive integers may not be stored in a language-specific format. We conclude that delays in learning the meanings of small number words are mainly due to language-specific processes of mapping words to concepts, whereas the logic and procedures of counting appear to be learned in a format that is independent of a particular language and thus transfers rapidly from one language to the other in development.
Macedonia, Manuela; Mueller, Karsten
Vocabulary learning in a second language is enhanced if learners enrich the learning experience with self-performed iconic gestures. This learning strategy is called enactment. Here we explore how enacted words are functionally represented in the brain and which brain regions contribute to enhance retention. After an enactment training lasting 4 days, participants performed a word recognition task in the functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) scanner. Data analysis suggests the participation of different and partially intertwined networks that are engaged in higher cognitive processes, i.e., enhanced attention and word recognition. Also, an experience-related network seems to map word representation. Besides core language regions, this latter network includes sensory and motor cortices, the basal ganglia, and the cerebellum. On the basis of its complexity and the involvement of the motor system, this sensorimotor network might explain superior retention for enactment.
Stamer, Melissa K; Vitevitch, Michael S
Neighborhood density-the number of words that sound similar to a given word (Luce & Pisoni, 1998)-influences word-learning in native English speaking children and adults (Storkel, 2004; Storkel, Armbruster, & Hogan, 2006): novel words with many similar sounding English words (i.e., dense neighborhood) are learned more quickly than novel words with few similar sounding English words (i.e., sparse neighborhood). The present study examined how neighborhood density influences word-learning in native English speaking adults learning Spanish as a foreign language. Students in their third-semester of Spanish language classes learned advanced Spanish words that sounded similar to many known Spanish words (i.e., dense neighborhood) or sounded similar to few known Spanish words (i.e., sparse neighborhood). In three word-learning tasks, performance was better for Spanish words with dense rather than sparse neighborhoods. These results suggest that a similar mechanism may be used to learn new words in a native and a foreign language.
Van Aken, Jerry R
In natural speech, the speaker does not pause between words, yet a human listener somehow perceives this continuous stream of phonemes as a series of distinct words. The detection of boundaries between spoken words is an instance of a general capability of the human neocortex to remember and to recognize recurring sequences. This paper describes a computer algorithm that is designed to solve the problem of locating word boundaries in blocks of English text from which the spaces have been removed. This problem avoids the complexities of processing speech but requires similar capabilities for detecting recurring sequences. The algorithm that is described in this paper relies entirely on statistical relationships between letters in the input stream to infer the locations of word boundaries. The source code for a C++ version of this algorithm is presented in an appendix.
Sullivan, Jessica; Barner, David
When children acquire language, they often learn words in the absence of direct instruction (e.g. "This is a ball!") or even social cues to reference (e.g. eye gaze, pointing). However, there are few accounts of how children do this, especially in cases where the referent of a new word is ambiguous. Across two experiments, we test…
Tenenbaum, Elena J.; Amso, Dima; Abar, Beau; Sheinkopf, Stephen J.
Previous work has demonstrated that patterns of social attention hold predictive value for language development in typically developing infants. The goal of this research was to explore how patterns of attention in autistic, language delayed, and typically developing children relate to early word learning and language abilities. We tracked patterns of eye movements to faces and objects while children watched videos of a woman teaching them a series of new words. Subsequent test trials measure...
Use this step-by-step learning package to master Word 2010 Word 2010 is one of the core applications of Microsoft Office and if you're eager to get started using all it has to offer, this value-packed eLearning Kit is essential to your learning process. This complete Word 2010 course includes a full-color printed book and a Dummies interactive eLearning course on CD. You'll discover the basics of the Word interface, how to navigate it, how to get comfortable with the terminology, and how to use its many features. Detailed instructions walk you through real-world exercises and help to make lear
Ma, Tengfei; Chen, Baoguo; Lu, Chunming; Dunlap, Susan
This paper presents an experiment that investigated the effects of L2 proficiency and sentence constraint on semantic processing of unknown L2 words (pseudowords). All participants were Chinese native speakers who learned English as a second language. In the experiment, we used a whole sentence presentation paradigm with a delayed semantic relatedness judgment task. Both higher and lower-proficiency L2 learners could make use of the high-constraint sentence context to judge the meaning of novel pseudowords, and higher-proficiency L2 learners outperformed lower-proficiency L2 learners in all conditions. These results demonstrate that both L2 proficiency and sentence constraint affect subsequent word learning among second language learners. We extended L2 word learning into a sentence context, replicated the sentence constraint effects previously found among native speakers, and found proficiency effects in L2 word learning.
Laing, Catherine E.
This article analyses longitudinal diary data from one infant acquiring German to seek a better understanding of the role of onomatopoeia in early language development. Onomatopoeic words (OWs) are traced over time in relation to their corresponding conventional forms (CWs), and an analysis of their phonological transitions is considered in…
Full Text Available This study investigates word-learning using a new model that integrates three processes: a extracting a word out of a continuous sound sequence, b inferring its referential meanings in context, c mapping the segmented word onto its broader intended referent, such as other objects of the same semantic category, and to novel utterances. Previous work has examined the role of statistical learning and/or of prosody in each of these processes separately. Here, we combine these strands of investigation into a single experimental approach, in which participants viewed a photograph belonging to one of three semantic categories while hearing a complex, five-syllable utterance containing a one-syllable target word. Six between-subjects conditions were tested with 20 adult participants each. In condition 1, the only cue to word-meaning mapping was the co-occurrence of word and referents. This statistical cue was present in all conditions. In condition 2, the target word was sounded at a higher pitch. In condition 3, random one-syllable words were sounded at a higher pitch, creating an inconsistent cue. In condition 4, the duration of the target word was lengthened. In conditions 5 and 6, an extraneous acoustic cue and a visual cue were associated with the target word, respectively. Performance in this word-learning task was significantly higher than that observed with simple co-occurrence only when pitch prominence consistently marked the target word. We discuss implications for the intentional value of pitch marking as well as the relevance of our findings to language acquisition and language evolution.
the category of L2 lexical learning in computer-adaptive learning environment. The reason to adopt computer-adaptive tool in WPG is based on the following premises: 1. Lexical learning is incremental in nature. 2. Learning can be measured precisely with tests (objectivist epistemology). In the course of WPG...... construction, I stress the design of a test theory, namely, a learning algorithm. The learning algorithm is designed under such principles that users experience both 'elaborative rehearsal’ (aspects in receptive and productive learning) and 'expanding rehearsal, (memory-based learning and repetitive act...
Lee, Soyoung; Davis, Barbara L; MacNeilage, Peter
Korean-learning infant patterns in babbling and single words were compared with those of English-learning infants and with Korean adult-directed and infantdirected speech to evaluate the roles of intrinsic production constraints proposed by the frame dominance hypothesis versus early learning mechanisms based on input regularities. Intrasyllabic patterns in babbling of Korean-learning infants were like those of English-learning infants. These patterns were not present in Korean infant-directed speech, providing evidence for the assertion that they are intrinsic to infants, and not triggered by input. Unlike English-learning infants, however, Korean-learning infants did not show the expected intrasyllabic patterns in their first words, suggesting that the intrinsic constraints can be overcome in first words if they conflict with ambient speech patterns as they do in Korean. Intersyllabic patterns of Korean-learning infants were mostly similar to those of English-learning infants, showing preferences for consonant manner and vowel height variegation in babbling though only a vowel variegation preference in words. Some implications of the results for generative phonology are considered.
Full Text Available The advent of humanoid robots has enabled a new approach to investigating the acquisition of language, and we report on the development of robots able to acquire rudimentary linguistic skills. Our work focuses on early stages analogous to some characteristics of a human child of about 6 to 14 months, the transition from babbling to first word forms. We investigate one mechanism among many that may contribute to this process, a key factor being the sensitivity of learners to the statistical distribution of linguistic elements. As well as being necessary for learning word meanings, the acquisition of anchor word forms facilitates the segmentation of an acoustic stream through other mechanisms. In our experiments some salient one-syllable word forms are learnt by a humanoid robot in real-time interactions with naive participants. Words emerge from random syllabic babble through a learning process based on a dialogue between the robot and the human participant, whose speech is perceived by the robot as a stream of phonemes. Numerous ways of representing the speech as syllabic segments are possible. Furthermore, the pronunciation of many words in spontaneous speech is variable. However, in line with research elsewhere, we observe that salient content words are more likely than function words to have consistent canonical representations; thus their relative frequency increases, as does their influence on the learner. Variable pronunciation may contribute to early word form acquisition. The importance of contingent interaction in real-time between teacher and learner is reflected by a reinforcement process, with variable success. The examination of individual cases may be more informative than group results. Nevertheless, word forms are usually produced by the robot after a few minutes of dialogue, employing a simple, real-time, frequency dependent mechanism. This work shows the potential of human-robot interaction systems in studies of the dynamics of
Wang, Yan; Liu, Zhiyuan; Sun, Maosong
Combined with neural language models, distributed word representations achieve significant advantages in computational linguistics and text mining. Most existing models estimate distributed word vectors from large-scale data in an unsupervised fashion, which, however, do not take rich linguistic knowledge into consideration. Linguistic knowledge can be represented as either link-based knowledge or preference-based knowledge, and we propose knowledge regularized word representation models (KRWR) to incorporate these prior knowledge for learning distributed word representations. Experiment results demonstrate that our estimated word representation achieves better performance in task of semantic relatedness ranking. This indicates that our methods can efficiently encode both prior knowledge from knowledge bases and statistical knowledge from large-scale text corpora into a unified word representation model, which will benefit many tasks in text mining.
Full Text Available Combined with neural language models, distributed word representations achieve significant advantages in computational linguistics and text mining. Most existing models estimate distributed word vectors from large-scale data in an unsupervised fashion, which, however, do not take rich linguistic knowledge into consideration. Linguistic knowledge can be represented as either link-based knowledge or preference-based knowledge, and we propose knowledge regularized word representation models (KRWR to incorporate these prior knowledge for learning distributed word representations. Experiment results demonstrate that our estimated word representation achieves better performance in task of semantic relatedness ranking. This indicates that our methods can efficiently encode both prior knowledge from knowledge bases and statistical knowledge from large-scale text corpora into a unified word representation model, which will benefit many tasks in text mining.
Laine, Matti; Polonyi, Tünde; Abari, Kálmán
In literates, reading is a fundamental channel for acquiring new vocabulary both in the mother tongue and in foreign languages. By using an artificial language learning task, we examined the acquisition of novel written words and their embedded regularities (an orthographic surface feature and a syllabic feature) in three groups of university students with different exposures (Group 1 saw 2 words once, Group 2 saw 20 words once, Group 3 saw 20 words three times). Recognition memory results for Groups 2 and 3 indicated that adults can learn novel written words even with just a single exposure, albeit repeated exposure improved target detection. A generalization task revealed that even the minimal exposure in Group 1 was enough for acquisition of the two embedded regularities. More exemplars and repeated exposure provided more robust effects for the syllable regularity. Finally, post-test interview showed that repeated exposure was needed to become aware of the regularities. The present results show that adults learn novel written words and their inherent regularities in a fast and effective fashion.
Imai, Mutsumi; Miyazaki, Michiko; Yeung, H Henny; Hidaka, Shohei; Kantartzis, Katerina; Okada, Hiroyuki; Kita, Sotaro
Sound symbolism, or the nonarbitrary link between linguistic sound and meaning, has often been discussed in connection with language evolution, where the oral imitation of external events links phonetic forms with their referents (e.g., Ramachandran & Hubbard, 2001). In this research, we explore whether sound symbolism may also facilitate synchronic language learning in human infants. Sound symbolism may be a useful cue particularly at the earliest developmental stages of word learning, because it potentially provides a way of bootstrapping word meaning from perceptual information. Using an associative word learning paradigm, we demonstrated that 14-month-old infants could detect Köhler-type (1947) shape-sound symbolism, and could use this sensitivity in their effort to establish a word-referent association.
Full Text Available Upon fast mapping, children rarely retain new words even over intervals as short as five minutes. In this study, we asked whether the memory process of encoding or consolidation is the bottleneck to retention. Forty-nine children, mean age 33 months, were exposed to eight 2-or-3-syllable nonce neighbors of words in their existing lexicons. Didactic training consisted of six exposures to each word in the context of its referent, an unfamiliar toy. Productions were elicited four times: immediately following the examiner’s model, and at 1-minute-, 5-minute-, and multiday retention intervals. At the final two intervals, the examiner said the first syllable and provided a beat gesture highlighting target word length in syllables as a cue following any erred production. The children were highly accurate at immediate posttest. Accuracy fell sharply over the 1-minute retention interval and again after an additional 5 minutes. Performance then stabilized such that the 5-minute and multiday posttests yielded comparable performance. Given this time course, we conclude that it was not the post-encoding process of consolidation but the process of encoding itself that presented the primary bottleneck to retention. Patterns of errors and responses to cueing upon error suggested that word forms were particularly vulnerable to partial decay during the time course of encoding.
Full Text Available For decades, implicit learning researchers have examined a variety of cognitive tasks in which people seem to automatically extract structure from the environment. Similarly, recent statistical learning studies have shown that people can learn word-object mappings from the repeated co-occurrence of words and objects in individually ambiguous situations. In light of this, the goal of the present paper is to investigate whether adult cross-situational learners require an explicit effort to learn word-object mappings, or if it may take place incidentally, only requiring attention to the stimuli. In two implicit learning experiments with incidental tasks directing participants' attention to different aspects of the stimuli, we found evidence of learning, suggesting that cross-situational learning mechanisms can operate incidentally, without explicit effort. However, performance was superior under explicit study instructions, indicating that strategic processes also play a role. Moreover, performance under instruction to learn word meanings did not differ from performance at counting co-occurrences, which may indicate these tasks engage similar strategies.
Di Bono, Maria Grazia; Zorzi, Marco
It is widely believed that orthographic processing implies an approximate, flexible coding of letter position, as shown by relative-position and transposition priming effects in visual word recognition. These findings have inspired alternative proposals about the representation of letter position, ranging from noisy coding across the ordinal positions to relative position coding based on open bigrams. This debate can be cast within the broader problem of learning location-invariant representations of written words, that is, a coding scheme abstracting the identity and position of letters (and combinations of letters) from their eye-centered (i.e., retinal) locations. We asked whether location-invariance would emerge from deep unsupervised learning on letter strings and what type of intermediate coding would emerge in the resulting hierarchical generative model. We trained a deep network with three hidden layers on an artificial dataset of letter strings presented at five possible retinal locations. Though word-level information (i.e., word identity) was never provided to the network during training, linear decoding from the activity of the deepest hidden layer yielded near-perfect accuracy in location-invariant word recognition. Conversely, decoding from lower layers yielded a large number of transposition errors. Analyses of emergent internal representations showed that word selectivity and location invariance increased as a function of layer depth. Word-tuning and location-invariance were found at the level of single neurons, but there was no evidence for bigram coding. Finally, the distributed internal representation of words at the deepest layer showed higher similarity to the representation elicited by the two exterior letters than by other combinations of two contiguous letters, in agreement with the hypothesis that word edges have special status. These results reveal that the efficient coding of written words-which was the model's learning objective
Lockwood, Gwilym; Dingemanse, Mark; Hagoort, Peter
The existence of sound-symbolism (or a non-arbitrary link between form and meaning) is well-attested. However, sound-symbolism has mostly been investigated with nonwords in forced choice tasks, neither of which are representative of natural language. This study uses ideophones, which are naturally occurring sound-symbolic words that depict sensory…
Norbury, Courtenay Frazier; Griffiths, Helen; Nation, Kate
Successful word learning depends on the integration of phonological and semantic information with social cues provided by interlocutors. How then, do children with autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) learn new words when social impairments pervade? We recorded the eye-movements of verbally-able children with ASD and their typical peers while completing a word learning task in a social context. We assessed learning of semantic and phonological features immediately after learning and again four weeks later. Eye-movement data revealed that both groups could follow social cues, but that typically developing children were more sensitive to the social informativeness of gaze cues. In contrast, children with ASD were more successful than peers at mapping phonological forms to novel referents; however, this advantage was not maintained over time. Typical children showed clear consolidation of learning both semantic and phonological information, children with ASD did not. These results provide unique evidence of qualitative differences in word learning and consolidation and elucidate the different mechanisms underlying the unusual nature of autistic language.
Watkins, R V; DeThorne, L S
Knowledge of word meanings and the ability to use words are fundamental to nearly every interaction of every day. Beginning long before formal schooling, vocabulary skills underpin many aspects of communicative, social, and academic well-being. Thus, evaluation of vocabulary knowledge and use is central to any complete assessment of language proficiency. We have advanced in our use of vocabulary assessment significantly since Binet and Simon first used vocabulary tests to measure cognitive proficiency. We have a repertoire of informative tools and strategies from which vocabulary assessment protocols can be fashioned. Current assessment approaches integrate multiple sources of information. They also look beyond existing word knowledge toward word-learning potential. Integrated and dynamic approaches can provide a rich way to ascertain young children's vocabulary abilities and aptitudes.
This paper outlines four word parts of medical vocabulary—roots，prefixes，suffixes，and linking vowels（usually o）and put forward a systematic approach to medical vocabulary learning.To develop a high degree of proficiency in learning medical vocabulary，it is advisable to learn the basic roots and affixes so as to make informed guesses regarding the meanings of unfamiliar medical vocabulary.
Collins, Peter; Hogan, Michael; Kilmartin, Liam; Keane, Michael; Kaiser, Jochen; Fischer, Kurt
One likely mechanism in learning new skills is change in synchronous connections between distributed neural networks, which can be measured by coherence analysis of electroencephalographic patterns. This study examined coherence changes during the learning of two tasks, a word association task and a figure association task. Although learning…
Maria Grazia eDi Bono
Full Text Available It is widely believed that orthographic processing implies an approximate, flexible coding of letter position, as shown by relative-position and transposition priming effects in visual word recognition. These findings have inspired alternative proposals about the representation of letter position, ranging from noisy coding across the ordinal positions to relative position coding based on open bigrams. This debate can be cast within the broader problem of learning location-invariant representations of written words, that is, a coding scheme abstracting the identity and position of letters (and combinations of letters from their eye-centred (i.e., retinal locations. We asked whether location-invariance would emerge from deep unsupervised learning on letter strings and what type of intermediate coding would emerge in the resulting hierarchical generative model. We trained a deep network with three hidden layers on an artificial dataset of letter strings presented at five possible retinal locations. Though word-level information (i.e., word identity was never provided to the network during training, linear decoding from the activity of the deepest hidden layer yielded near-perfect accuracy in location-invariant word recognition. Conversely, decoding from lower layers yielded a large number of transposition errors. Analyses of emergent internal representations showed that word selectivity and location invariance increased as a function of layer depth. Conversely, there was no evidence for bigram coding. Finally, the distributed internal representation of words at the deepest layer showed higher similarity to the representation elicited by the two exterior letters than by other combinations of two contiguous letters, in agreement with the hypothesis that word edges have special status. These results reveal that the efficient coding of written words – which was the model’s learning objective – is largely based on letter-level information.
Laine, Matti; Polonyi, Tünde; Abari, Kálmán
In literates, reading is a fundamental channel for acquiring new vocabulary both in the mother tongue and in foreign languages. By using an artificial language learning task, we examined the acquisition of novel written words and their embedded regularities (an orthographic surface feature and a syllabic feature) in three groups of university…
Full Text Available Title is a compact representation of a document which distill the important information from the document. In this paper we studied the selection words as title words by using different learning approachesnamely nearest neighbor approach (NN, Naive Bayes approach with limited-vocabulary (NBL, Naive Bayes approach with full vocabulary (NBF and by using a term weighing approach (tf-idf. We compare theperformance of these approaches by using F1 metric. We compare the F1 metric results both on English Script and Indic Script ' Telugu'. We concluded the influence of linguistic complexity in the process of Title word selection.
In several of his papers, Charles S. Peirce illustrates processes of interpreting and understanding signs by examples from second language vocabulary teaching and learning. The insights conveyed by means of these little pedagogical scenarios are not meant as contributions to the psychology of second language learning, but they aim at elucidating…
Neighborhood density refers to the number of similar sounding words to a target word (Luce & Pisoni, 1998) and influences first language word learning in adults learning English (Storkel, Armbruster, & Hogan, 2006). There are two processes in word learning: lexical configuration and lexical engagement (Leach & Samuel, 2007). Lexical configuration…
Zhou, Lulin; Duff, Fiona J.; Hulme, Charles
We report a training study that assesses whether teaching the pronunciation and meaning of spoken words improves Chinese children's subsequent attempts to learn to read the words. Teaching the pronunciations of words helps children to learn to read those same words, and teaching the pronunciations and meanings improves learning still further.…
Guion, Susan G.
Given early acquisition of prosodic knowledge as demonstrated by infants' sensitivity to native language accentual patterns, the question of whether learners can acquire new prosodic patterns across the life span arises. Acquisition of English stress by early and late Spanish-English and Korean-English bilinguals was investigated. In a production task, two-syllable nonwords were produced in noun and verb sentence frames. In a perception task, preference for first or last syllable stress on the nonwords was indicated. Also, real words that were phonologically similar to the nonwords were collected. Logistic regression analyses and ANOVAs were conducted to determine the effect of three factors (syllable structure, lexical class, and stress patterns of phonologically similar words) on the production and perception responses. In all three groups, stress patterns of phonologically similar real words predicted stress on nonwords. For the two other factors, early bilinguals patterned similarly to the native-English participants. Late Spanish-English bilinguals demonstrated less learning of stress patterns based on syllabic structure, and late Korean-English bilinguals demonstrated less learning of stress patterns based on lexical class than native-English speakers. Thus, compared to native speakers, late bilinguals' ability to abstract stress patterns is reduced and affected by the first language. [Work supported by NIH.
Carpe Pérez, Inmaculada Concepción; Pedersen, Hanne
of thoughts and emotions. We work from the constructivism of Vygotsky, taking into account student's opinions to enhance the learning experience, by guiding the pupils in finding their own way to express themselves. Furthermore, to regulate emotions and work on human values such as: resilience, tolerance...... writing at schools. "I believe we need to stress visual literacy in our schools. We need to educate (young people) to understand the difference between moving images that engage their humanity and their intelligence, and moving images that are just selling them something" (Scorsese, Martin. 2013....... The persisting vision). We are aware of the resistance that alternative learning tools suffer from the most traditional school systems, as Sir Ken Robinson claims; we need to change the old teachings paradigms. At the Animated Learning Lab, together, with some of the newest results from other schools...
Webb, Stuart; Kagimoto, Eve
This study investigated the effects of three factors (the number of collocates per node word, the position of the node word, synonymy) on learning collocations. Japanese students studying English as a foreign language learned five sets of 12 target collocations. Each collocation was presented in a single glossed sentence. The number of collocates…
Much of what is communicated in the classroom is through nonverbal means. Sending appropriate nonverbal signals, as well as recognizing and interpreting the nonverbal signals of others, are essential features of the learning process. Students' abilities to encode and decode nonverbal communication have the potential to affect all aspects of their…
Within the communicative approach, often the assumption has been that with the right exposure, students will simply "pick up" the vocabulary required for learning and using English, and thus there is no need to focus on or teach it. Yet, as many teachers can attest, this is frequently not the case, and there have been recent efforts to…
Van den Bosch, A; Daelemans, W; Bosch, Antal van den; Weijters, Ton; Daelemans, Walter
In leading morpho-phonological theories and state-of-the-art text-to-speech systems it is assumed that word pronunciation cannot be learned or performed without in-between analyses at several abstraction levels (e.g., morphological, graphemic, phonemic, syllabic, and stress levels). We challenge this assumption for the case of English word pronunciation. Using IGTree, an inductive-learning decision-tree algorithms, we train and test three word-pronunciation systems in which the number of abstraction levels (implemented as sequenced modules) is reduced from five, via three, to one. The latter system, classifying letter strings directly as mapping to phonemes with stress markers, yields significantly better generalisation accuracies than the two multi-module systems. Analyses of empirical results indicate that positive utility effects of sequencing modules are outweighed by cascading errors passed on between modules.
Twomey, Katherine E.; Ranson, Samantha L.; Horst, Jessica S.
Previous research indicates learning words facilitates categorisation. The current study explores how categorisation affects word learning. In the current study, we investigated whether learning about a category facilitates retention of newly learned words by presenting 2-year-old children with multiple referent selection trials to the same object…
Kittleson, Megan M.; Aguilar, Jessica M.; Tokerud, Gry Line; Plante, Elena; Asbjornsen, Arve E.
Previous language learning research reveals that the statistical properties of the input offer sufficient information to allow listeners to segment words from fluent speech in an artificial language. The current pair of studies uses a natural language to test the ecological validity of these findings and to determine whether a listener's language…
Chan, Ricky K. W.; Leung, Janny H. C.
This article reports an experiment on the implicit learning of second language stress regularities, and presents a methodological innovation on awareness measurement. After practising two-syllable Spanish words, native Cantonese speakers with English as a second language (L2) completed a judgement task. Critical items differed only in placement of…
Some Chinese students have learnt English for many years,however,they still fell hard to learn it well,sometimes it is because they do not have the writing-style awareness and do not pay enough attention to the word partnership.
MacRoy-Higgins, Michelle; Montemarano, Elizabeth A.
The purpose of this study was to examine attention allocation in toddlers who were late talkers and toddlers with typical language development while they were engaged in a word-learning task in order to determine if differences exist. Two-year-olds who were late talkers (11) and typically developing toddlers (11) were taught twelve novel…
Aldaqre, Iyad; Paulus, Markus; Sodian, Beate
While typically developing children can use referential gaze to guide their word learning, those with autism spectrum disorder are often described to have problems with that. However, some researchers assume that the ability to follow gaze to select the correct referent can develop in autism later compared to typically developing individuals. To…
Vihman, Marilyn May; DePaolis, Rory A.; Keren-Portnoy, Tamar
Studies of phonological development that combine speech-processing experiments with observation and analysis of production remain rare, although production experience is necessarily relevant to developmental advance. Here we focus on three proposals regarding the relationship of production to word learning: (1) "Articulatory filter": The…
Gillanders, Cristina; Castro, Dina C.; Franco, Ximena
Vocabulary development plays a critical role in young dual language learners' success in school. As teachers become aware of how they use language in the classroom, systematically teach specific words in a variety of ways, and learn about dual language learners' level of English acquisition and sociocultural experiences, they can help…
This paper reports on a study of twelve 10th grade students using Cognitive Tutor, a math software program, to learn linear algebra word concept. The study's purpose was to examine whether students' mathematics performance as it is related to using Cognitive Tutor provided evidence to support Koedlinger's (2002) four instructional principles used…
Full Text Available Previous work has demonstrated that patterns of social attention hold predictive value for language development in typically developing infants. The goal of this research was to explore how patterns of attention in autistic, language delayed, and typically developing children relate to early word learning and language abilities. We tracked patterns of eye movements to faces and objects while children watched videos of a woman teaching them a series of new words. Subsequent test trials measured participants’ recognition of these novel word-object pairings. Results indicated that greater attention to the speaker’s mouth was related to higher scores on standardized measures of language development for autistic and typically developing children (but not for language delayed children. This effect was mediated by age for typically developing, but not autistic children. When effects of age were controlled for, attention to the mouth among language delayed participants was negatively correlated with standardized measures of language learning. Attention to the speaker’s mouth and eyes while she was teaching the new words was also predictive of faster recognition of the newly learned words among autistic children. These results suggest that language delays among children with autism may be driven in part by aberrant social attention, and that the mechanisms underlying these delays may differ from those in language delayed participants without autism.
Jing, Wei; Fang, Junming
Typically developing (TD) infants could capitalize on social eye gaze and social contexts to aid word learning. Although children with autism disorder (AD) are known to exhibit atypicality in word learning via social eye gaze, their ability to utilize social contexts for word learning is not well understood. We investigated whether verbal AD…
Full Text Available In the biomedical domain, word sense ambiguity is a widely spread problem with bioinformatics research effort devoted to it being not commensurate and allowing for more development. This paper presents and evaluates a learning-based approach for sense disambiguation within the biomedical domain. The main limitation with supervised methods is the need for a corpus of manually disambiguated instances of the ambiguous words. However, the advances in automatic text annotation and tagging techniques with the help of the plethora of knowledge sources like ontologies and text literature in the biomedical domain will help lessen this limitation. The proposed method utilizes the interaction model (mutual information between the context words and the senses of the target word to induce reliable learning models for sense disambiguation. The method has been evaluated with the benchmark dataset NLM-WSD with various settings and in biomedical entity species disambiguation. The evaluation results showed that the approach is very competitive and outperforms recently reported results of other published techniques.
Elgort, Irina; Perfetti, Charles A; Rickles, Ben; Stafura, Joseph Z
New word learning occurs incidentally through exposure to language. Hypothesizing that effectiveness of contextual word learning in a second language (L2) depends on the quality of existing lexical semantic knowledge, we tested more and less proficient adult bilinguals in an incidental word learning task. One day after being exposed to rare words in an L2 (English) reading task, the bilinguals read sentences with the newly-learned words in the sentence-final position, followed by related or unrelated meaning probes. Both proficiency groups showed some learning through faster responses on related trials and a frontal N400 effect observed during probe word reading. However, word learning was more robust for the higher-proficiency group, who showed a larger semantic relatedness effect in unfamiliar contexts and a canonical N400 (central-parietal). The results suggest that the ability to learn the meanings of new words from context depends on the L2 lexical semantic knowledge of the reader.
Tenenbaum, Elena J; Amso, Dima; Abar, Beau; Sheinkopf, Stephen J
Previous work has demonstrated that patterns of social attention hold predictive value for language development in typically developing infants. The goal of this research was to explore how patterns of attention in autistic, language delayed, and typically developing children relate to early word learning and language abilities. We tracked patterns of eye movements to faces and objects while children watched videos of a woman teaching them a series of new words. Subsequent test trials measured participants' recognition of these novel word-object pairings. Results indicated that greater attention to the speaker's mouth was related to higher scores on standardized measures of language development for autistic and typically developing children (but not for language delayed children). This effect was mediated by age for typically developing, but not autistic children. When effects of age were controlled for, attention to the mouth among language delayed participants was negatively correlated with standardized measures of language learning. Attention to the speaker's mouth and eyes while she was teaching the new words was also predictive of faster recognition of those words among autistic children. These results suggest that language delays among children with autism may be driven in part by aberrant social attention, and that the mechanisms underlying these delays may differ from those in language delayed participants without autism.
Kurdziel, Laura B F; Spencer, Rebecca M C
Sleep has been shown to improve the retention of newly learned words. However, most methodologies have used artificial or foreign language stimuli, with learning limited to word/novel word or word/image pairs. Such stimuli differ from many word-learning scenarios in which definition strings are learned with novel words. Thus, we examined sleep's benefit on learning new words within a native language by using very low-frequency words. Participants learned 45 low-frequency English words and, at subsequent recall, attempted to recall the words when given the corresponding definitions. Participants either learned in the morning with recall in the evening (wake group), or learned in the evening with recall the following morning (sleep group). Performance change across the delay was significantly better in the sleep than the wake group. Additionally, the Levenshtein distance, a measure of correctness of the typed word compared with the target word, became significantly worse following wake, whereas sleep protected correctness of recall. Polysomnographic data from a subsample of participants suggested that rapid eye movement (REM) sleep may be particularly important for this benefit. These results lend further support for sleep's function on semantic learning even for word/definition pairs within a native language.
Research on early learning French-English bilinguals suggests that development of segmentation is best characterized by a parameter-setting theory of language acquisition in which French segmentation is marked relative to English segmentation. Reports recent research with late-learning French-English bilinguals that finds evidence for parameter…
Cui, Qing; Gao, Bin; Bian, Jiang; Qiu, Siyu; Liu, Tie-Yan
Neural network techniques are widely applied to obtain high-quality distributed representations of words, i.e., word embeddings, to address text mining, information retrieval, and natural language processing tasks. Recently, efficient methods have been proposed to learn word embeddings from context that captures both semantic and syntactic relationships between words. However, it is challenging to handle unseen words or rare words with insufficient context. In this paper, inspired by the stud...
Chen, Yuchun; Liu, Huei-Mei
Children with SLI exhibit overall deficits in novel word learning compared to their age-matched peers. However, the manifestation of the word learning difficulty in SLI was not consistent across tasks and the factors affecting the learning performance were not yet determined. Our aim is to examine the extent of word learning difficulties in Mandarin-speaking preschool children with SLI, and to explore the potent influence of existing lexical knowledge on to the word learning process. Preschool children with SLI (n=37) and typical language development (n=33) were exposed to novel words for unfamiliar objects embedded in stories. Word learning tasks including the initial mapping and short-term repetitive learning were designed. Results revealed that Mandarin-speaking preschool children with SLI performed as well as their age-peers in the initial form-meaning mapping task. Their word learning difficulty was only evidently shown in the short-term repetitive learning task under a production demand, and their learning speed was slower than the control group. Children with SLI learned the novel words with a semantic head better in both the initial mapping and repetitive learning tasks. Moderate correlations between stand word learning performances and scores on standardized vocabulary were found after controlling for children's age and nonverbal IQ. The results suggested that the word learning difficulty in children with SLI occurred in the process of establishing a robust phonological representation at the beginning stage of word learning. Also, implicit compound knowledge is applied to aid word learning process for children with and without SLI. We also provide the empirical data to validate the relationship between preschool children's word learning performance and their existing receptive vocabulary ability.
McMurray, Bob; Horst, Jessica S; Samuelson, Larissa K
Classic approaches to word learning emphasize referential ambiguity: In naming situations, a novel word could refer to many possible objects, properties, actions, and so forth. To solve this, researchers have posited constraints, and inference strategies, but assume that determining the referent of a novel word is isomorphic to learning. We present an alternative in which referent selection is an online process and independent of long-term learning. We illustrate this theoretical approach with a dynamic associative model in which referent selection emerges from real-time competition between referents and learning is associative (Hebbian). This model accounts for a range of findings including the differences in expressive and receptive vocabulary, cross-situational learning under high degrees of ambiguity, accelerating (vocabulary explosion) and decelerating (power law) learning, fast mapping by mutual exclusivity (and differences in bilinguals), improvements in familiar word recognition with development, and correlations between speed of processing and learning. Together it suggests that (a) association learning buttressed by dynamic competition can account for much of the literature; (b) familiar word recognition is subserved by the same processes that identify the referents of novel words (fast mapping); (c) online competition may allow the children to leverage information available in the task to augment performance despite slow learning; (d) in complex systems, associative learning is highly multifaceted; and (e) learning and referent selection, though logically distinct, can be subtly related. It suggests more sophisticated ways of describing the interaction between situation- and developmental-time processes and points to the need for considering such interactions as a primary determinant of development.
Tamura, Niina; Castles, Anne; Nation, Kate
Children learn new words via their everyday reading experience but little is known about how this learning happens. We addressed this by focusing on the conditions needed for new words to become familiar to children, drawing a distinction between lexical configuration (the acquisition of word knowledge) and lexical engagement (the emergence of interactive processes between newly learned words and existing words). In Experiment 1, 9-11-year-olds saw unfamiliar words in one of two storybook conditions, differing in degree of focus on the new words but matched for frequency of exposure. Children showed good learning of the novel words in terms of both configuration (form and meaning) and engagement (lexical competition). A frequency manipulation under incidental learning conditions in Experiment 2 revealed different time-courses of learning: a fast lexical configuration process, indexed by explicit knowledge, and a slower lexicalization process, indexed by lexical competition.
Bedford, R; Gliga, T; Frame, K; Hudry, K; Chandler, S; Johnson, M H; Charman, T
Children's assignment of novel words to nameless objects, over objects whose names they know (mutual exclusivity; ME) has been described as a driving force for vocabulary acquisition. Despite their ability to use ME to fast-map words (Preissler & Carey, 2005), children with autism show impaired language acquisition. We aimed to address this puzzle by building on studies showing that correct referent selection using ME does not lead to word learning unless ostensive feedback is provided on the child's object choice (Horst & Samuelson, 2008). We found that although toddlers aged 2;0 at risk for autism can use ME to choose the correct referent of a word, they do not benefit from feedback for long-term retention of the word-object mapping. Further, their difficulty using feedback is associated with their smaller receptive vocabularies. We propose that difficulties learning from social feedback, not lexical principles, limits vocabulary building during development in children at risk for autism.
Salvi, Giampiero; Montesano, Luis; Bernardino, Alexandre; Santos-Victor, José
We address the problem of bootstrapping language acquisition for an artificial system similarly to what is observed in experiments with human infants. Our method works by associating meanings to words in manipulation tasks, as a robot interacts with objects and listens to verbal descriptions of the interactions. The model is based on an affordance network, i.e., a mapping between robot actions, robot perceptions, and the perceived effects of these actions upon objects. We extend the affordance model to incorporate spoken words, which allows us to ground the verbal symbols to the execution of actions and the perception of the environment. The model takes verbal descriptions of a task as the input and uses temporal co-occurrence to create links between speech utterances and the involved objects, actions, and effects. We show that the robot is able form useful word-to-meaning associations, even without considering grammatical structure in the learning process and in the presence of recognition errors. These word-to-meaning associations are embedded in the robot's own understanding of its actions. Thus, they can be directly used to instruct the robot to perform tasks and also allow to incorporate context in the speech recognition task. We believe that the encouraging results with our approach may afford robots with a capacity to acquire language descriptors in their operation's environment as well as to shed some light as to how this challenging process develops with human infants.
Angwin, Anthony J; Phua, Bernadette; Copland, David A
This study aimed to investigate whether the addition of meaning (semantics) would enhance new word learning for novel objects, and whether it would influence the neurophysiological response to new words. Twenty-five young healthy adults underwent 4 days of training to learn the names of 80 novel objects. Half of the items were learnt under a 'semantic' condition, whereby the name consisted of a legal nonword and two adjectives denoting semantic attributes. The remaining items were learnt under a 'name' condition, whereby the name consisted of a legal nonword and two proper names. Participants demonstrated superior recognition of names in the semantic condition compared to the name condition during training sessions 1-3. On the 5th day, following training, ERPs were recorded whilst participants performed a picture-word judgement task including familiar items. Analysis of the results revealed an N400 for incongruent items in the semantic condition, whilst no ERP component was observed for the name condition. These findings suggest that items learnt with semantic information form stronger associations than those trained without semantics.
Parents and child care personnel in English-dominant parts of the world often express misgivings about raising children bilingually. Their concerns are based on the belief that dual language learning during the infant-toddler stage confuses children, delays their development, and perhaps even results in reduced language competence. In this…
Steele, Sara C; Watkins, Ruth V
This study investigated whether children with language learning disability (LLD) differed from typically-developing peers in their ability to learn meanings of novel words presented during reading. Fifteen 9-11-year-old children with LLD and 15 typically-developing peers read four passages containing 20 nonsense words. Word learning was assessed through oral definition and multiple-choice tasks. Variables were position of informative context, number of exposures, part of speech, and contextual clues. The LLD group scored lower than same-aged peers on oral definition (p < .001) and multiple-choice (p < .001) tasks. For both groups, there was no effect for position of informative context (p = .867) or number of exposures (p = .223). All children benefitted from contextual clues. The findings suggested difficulty inferring and recalling word meanings during reading and pointed to the need for vocabulary intervention in the upper elementary years for children with LLD.
Parault, Susan J.; Schwanenflugel, Paula J.
Sound-symbolism is the idea that the relationship between word sounds and word meaning is not arbitrary for all words, but rather that there are subsets of words in the world's languages for which sounds and their symbols have some degree of correspondence. The present research investigates sound-symbolism as a possible route to the learning of an…
Ehri, Linnea C.
Orthographic mapping (OM) involves the formation of letter-sound connections to bond the spellings, pronunciations, and meanings of specific words in memory. It explains how children learn to read words by sight, to spell words from memory, and to acquire vocabulary words from print. This development is portrayed by Ehri (2005a) as a sequence of…
Curtin, S.; Fennell, C.; Escudero, P.
Previous research has demonstrated that infants under 17 months have difficulty learning novel words in the laboratory when the words differ by only one consonant sound, irrespective of the magnitude of that difference. The current study explored whether 15-month-old infants can learn novel words th
Burton, Harold; Sinclair, Robert J; Agato, Alvin
We examined cortical activity in early blind during word recognition memory. Nine participants were blind at birth and one by 1.5years. In an event-related design, we studied blood oxygen level-dependent responses to studied ("old") compared to novel ("new") words. Presentation mode was in Braille or spoken. Responses were larger for identified "new" words read with Braille in bilateral lower and higher tier visual areas and primary somatosensory cortex. Responses to spoken "new" words were larger in bilateral primary and accessory auditory cortex. Auditory cortex was unresponsive to Braille words and occipital cortex responded to spoken words but not differentially with "old"/"new" recognition. Left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex had larger responses to "old" words only with Braille. Larger occipital cortex responses to "new" Braille words suggested verbal memory based on the mechanism of recollection. A previous report in sighted noted larger responses for "new" words studied in association with pictures that created a distinctiveness heuristic source factor which enhanced recollection during remembering. Prior behavioral studies in early blind noted an exceptional ability to recall words. Utilization of this skill by participants in the current study possibly engendered recollection that augmented remembering "old" words. A larger response when identifying "new" words possibly resulted from exhaustive recollecting the sensory properties of "old" words in modality appropriate sensory cortices. The uniqueness of a memory role for occipital cortex is in its cross-modal responses to coding tactile properties of Braille. The latter possibly reflects a "sensory echo" that aids recollection.
Nordström, Thomas; Jacobson, Christer; Söderberg, Pernilla
This study, using a longitudinal design with a Swedish cohort of young readers, investigates if children's early word decoding ability in second grade can predict later academic performance. In an effort to estimate the unique effect of early word decoding (grade 2) with academic performance (grade 9), gender and non-verbal cognitive ability were…
Wasserman, Edward A; Brooks, Daniel I; McMurray, Bob
Might there be parallels between category learning in animals and word learning in children? To examine this possibility, we devised a new associative learning technique for teaching pigeons to sort 128 photographs of objects into 16 human language categories. We found that pigeons learned all 16 categories in parallel, they perceived the perceptual coherence of the different object categories, and they generalized their categorization behavior to novel photographs from the training categories. More detailed analyses of the factors that predict trial-by-trial learning implicated a number of factors that may shape learning. First, we found considerable trial-by-trial dependency of pigeons' categorization responses, consistent with several recent studies that invoke this dependency to claim that humans acquire words via symbolic or inferential mechanisms; this finding suggests that such dependencies may also arise in associative systems. Second, our trial-by-trial analyses divulged seemingly irrelevant aspects of the categorization task, like the spatial location of the report responses, which influenced learning. Third, those trial-by-trial analyses also supported the possibility that learning may be determined both by strengthening correct stimulus-response associations and by weakening incorrect stimulus-response associations. The parallel between all these findings and important aspects of human word learning suggests that associative learning mechanisms may play a much stronger part in complex human behavior than is commonly believed.
McGregor, Karla K.; Rost, Gwyneth; Arenas, Rick; Farris-Trimble, Ashley; Stiles, Derek
Background: Many children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) struggle to understand familiar words and learn unfamiliar words. We explored the extent to which these problems reflect deficient use of probabilistic gaze in the
The acquisition of word order has been one of the central issues in the study of child language. One striking finding from the detailed investigation of various child languages is that from the earliest observable stages, children are highly sensitive to the basic word order of their target language. However, the evidence so far comes mainly from…
Beloglovsky, Miriam; Daly, Lisa
Go beyond reading about early learning theories and see what they look like in action in modern programs and teacher practices. With classroom vignettes and colorful photographs, this book makes the works of Jean Piaget, Erik Erikson, Lev Vygotsky, Abraham Maslow, John Dewey, Howard Gardner, and Louise Derman-Sparks visible, accessible, and easier…
Ciantar, Jessica; Finch, Emma; Copland, David A
The present study investigated the effect of performing an intentional non-meaningful hand movement on subsequent lexical acquisition and retrieval in healthy adults. Twenty-five right-handed healthy individuals were required to learn the names (2-syllable legal nonwords) for a series of unfamiliar objects. Participants also completed a familiar picture naming task to investigate the effects of the intentional non-meaningful movement on lexical retrieval. Results revealed that performing this hand movement immediately before linguistic tasks interfered with both new word learning and familiar picture naming when compared with no movement. These results extend previous findings of dual task interference effects in healthy individuals, suggesting that complex, non-meaningful, hand movements can also interfere with subsequent lexical acquisition and retrieval.
Full Text Available The present study investigated the effect of performing an intentional non-meaningful hand movement on subsequent lexical acquisition and retrieval in healthy adults. Twenty-five right-handed healthy individuals were required to learn the names (2-syllable legal nonwords for a series of unfamiliar objects. Participants also completed a familiar picture naming task to investigate the effects of the intentional non-meaningful movement on lexical retrieval. Results revealed that performing this hand movement immediately before linguistic tasks interfered with both new word learning and familiar picture naming when compared with no movement. These results extend previous findings of dual task interference effects in healthy individuals, suggesting that complex, non-meaningful, hand movements can also interfere with subsequent lexical acquisition and retrieval.
Infants at 1;2 demonstrate difficulty in accessing subtle phonetic information about newly learned word-object pairings (Stager & Werker, 1997). In this study, we examined whether or not infants can access subtle prosodic information such as lexical stress in a word learning task. We tested infants younger than 1;2 to see if they could learn two…
Piantadosi, Steven T.; Jara-Ettinger, Julian; Gibson, Edward
We show that children in the Tsimane', a farming-foraging group in the Bolivian rain-forest, learn number words along a similar developmental trajectory to children from industrialized countries. Tsimane' children successively acquire the first three or four number words before fully learning how counting works. However, their learning is…
Hollich, G J; Hirsh-Pasek, K; Golinkoff, R M; Brand, R J; Brown, E; Chung, H L; Hennon, E; Rocroi, C
How do children learn their first words? The field of language development has been polarized by responses to this question. Explanations range from constraints/principles accounts that emphasize the importance of cognitive heuristics in language acquisition, to social-pragmatic accounts that highlight the role of parent-child interaction, to associationistic accounts that highlight the role of "dumb attentional mechanisms" in word learning. In this Monograph, an alternative to these accounts is presented: the emergentist coalition theory. A hybrid view of word learning, this theory characterizes lexical acquisition as the emergent product of multiple factors, including cognitive constraints, social-pragmatic factors, and global attentional mechanisms. The model makes three assumptions: (a) that children cull from multiple inputs available for word learning at any given time, (b) that these inputs are differentially weighted over development, and (c) that children develop emergent principles of word learning, which guide subsequent word acquisition. With few exceptions, competing accounts of the word learning process have examined children who are already veteran word learners. By focusing on the very beginnings of word learning at around 12 months of age, however, it is possible to see how social and cognitive factors are coordinated in the process of vocabulary development. After presenting a new method for investigating word learning, the development of reference is used as a test case of the theory. In 12 experiments, with children ranging in age from 12 to 25 months of age, data are described that support the emergentist coalition model. This fundamentally developmental theory posits that children construct principles of word learning. As children's word learning principles emerge and develop, the character of word learning changes over the course of the 2nd year of life.
Kapnoula, Efthymia C; McMurray, Bob
A hotly debated question in word learning concerns the conditions under which newly learned words compete or interfere with familiar words during spoken word recognition. This has recently been described as a key marker of the integration of a new word into the lexicon and was thought to require consolidation Dumay & Gaskell, (Psychological Science, 18, 35-39, 2007; Gaskell & Dumay, Cognition, 89, 105-132, 2003). Recently, however, Kapnoula, Packard, Gupta, and McMurray, (Cognition, 134, 85-99, 2015) showed that interference can be observed immediately after a word is first learned, implying very rapid integration of new words into the lexicon. It is an open question whether these kinds of effects derive from episodic traces of novel words or from more abstract and lexicalized representations. Here we addressed this question by testing inhibition for newly learned words using training and test stimuli presented in different talker voices. During training, participants were exposed to a set of nonwords spoken by a female speaker. Immediately after training, we assessed the ability of the novel word forms to inhibit familiar words, using a variant of the visual world paradigm. Crucially, the test items were produced by a male speaker. An analysis of fixations showed that even with a change in voice, newly learned words interfered with the recognition of similar known words. These findings show that lexical competition effects from newly learned words spread across different talker voices, which suggests that newly learned words can be sufficiently lexicalized, and abstract with respect to talker voice, without consolidation.
Chen, Shuang; Wang, Lin; Yang, Yufang
This study examined the semantic representation of novel words learnt in two conditions: directly mapping a novel word to a concept (Direct mapping: DM) and inferring the concept from provided features (Inferred learning: IF). A condition where no definite concept could be inferred (No basic-level meaning: NM) served as a baseline. The semantic representation of the novel word was assessed via a semantic-relatedness judgment task. In this task, the learned novel word served as a prime, while the corresponding concept, an unlearned feature of the concept, and an unrelated word served as targets. ERP responses to the targets, primed by the novel words in the three learning conditions, were compared. For the corresponding concept, smaller N400s were elicited in the DM and IF conditions than in the NM condition, indicating that the concept could be obtained in both learning conditions. However, for the unlearned feature, the targets in the IF condition produced an N400 effect while in the DM condition elicited an LPC effect relative to the NM learning condition. No ERP difference was observed among the three learning conditions for the unrelated words. The results indicate that conditions of learning affect the semantic representation of novel word, and that the unlearned feature was only activated by the novel word in the IF learning condition.
Dogan - Ibrahim
Full Text Available There is an increase use of wireless technologies in education all over the world. In fact, wireless technologies such as laptop computers, palmtop computers, and mobile phones are revolutionizing education and transforming the traditional classroom based learning and teaching into anytime and anywhere education. This paper investigates the use of wireless technologies in education with particular reference to the potential of learning new technical English Language words using SMS text messaging. The system, developed by the authors, called Mobile Learning Tool (MOLT, has been tested with 45 first-year undergraduate students. Students’ opinions have been collected after the experiment. Our results show that students enjoyed and be happy used mobile phones to learn new technical English word. We believe that if we add the improvements or modifications students wish to see in the MOLT system, then using the MOLT system as an educational tool will contribute to motivation and success of students.
Norman, Tal; Degani, Tamar; Peleg, Orna
The present study examined visual word recognition processes in Hebrew (a Semitic language) among beginning learners whose first language (L1) was either Semitic (Arabic) or Indo-European (e.g. English). To examine if learners, like native Hebrew speakers, exhibit morphological sensitivity to root and word-pattern morphemes, learners made an…
Suanda, Sumarga H.; Namy, Laura L.
Recent research has demonstrated that word learners can determine word-referent mappings by tracking co-occurrences across multiple ambiguous naming events. The current study addresses the mechanisms underlying this capacity to learn words cross-situationally. This replication and extension of Yu and Smith (2007) investigates the factors…
Parault, Susan J.; Parkinson, Meghan
Sound symbolism is the notion that there is a subset of words in the world's languages for which sounds and their symbols have some degree of correspondence. Two studies assessed 5th and 6th graders' knowledge of word meanings for English sound symbolic and non-sound symbolic words. Both studies found that the meanings of sound symbolic words were…
An implicit word learning paradigm was designed to test the hypothesis that children who came to the task of L2 vocabulary acquisition with poorer L1 phonological awareness (PA) are less capable of extracting phonological patterns from L2 and thus have difficulties capitalizing on this knowledge to support L2 vocabulary learning. A group of Chinese-speaking six-grade students took a multi-trial L2 (English) word learning task after being exposed to a set of familiar words that rhymed with the target words. Children's PA was measured at grade 3. Children with relatively poorer L1 PA and those with better L1 PA did not differ in identifying the forms of the new words. However, children with poorer L1 PA demonstrated reduced performance in naming pictures with labels that rhymed with the pre-exposure words than with labels that did not rhyme with the pre-exposure words. Children with better L1 PA were not affected by the recurring rime shared by the pre-exposure words and the target words. These findings suggest that poor L1 PA may impede L2 word learning via difficulty in abstracting phonological patterns away from L2 input to scaffold word learning.
Kaushanskaya, Margarita; Marian, Viorica
The goal of the present work was to examine the effects of bilingualism on adults' ability to resolve cross-linguistic inconsistencies in orthography-to-phonology mappings during novel-word learning. English monolinguals and English-Spanish bilinguals learned artificially constructed novel words that overlapped with English orthographically but…
McDuffie, Andrea; Kover, Sara T.; Hagerman, Randi; Abbeduto, Leonard
Fast-mapping paradigms have not been used previously to examine the process of word learning in boys with fragile X syndrome (FXS), who are likely to have intellectual impairment, language delays, and symptoms of autism. In this study, a fast-mapping task was used to investigate associative word learning in 4- to 10-year-old boys with FXS relative…
Feldman, Naomi H.; Myers, Emily B.; White, Katherine S.; Griffiths, Thomas L.; Morgan, James L.
Infants begin to segment words from fluent speech during the same time period that they learn phonetic categories. Segmented words can provide a potentially useful cue for phonetic learning, yet accounts of phonetic category acquisition typically ignore the contexts in which sounds appear. We present two experiments to show that, contrary to the…
Kaushanskaya, Margarita; Yoo, Jeewon; Van Hecke, Stephanie
Purpose: The goal of this research was to examine whether phonological familiarity exerts different effects on novel word learning for familiar versus unfamiliar referents and whether successful word learning is associated with increased second-language experience. Method: Eighty-one adult native English speakers with various levels of Spanish…
Frishkoff, Gwen A.; Collins-Thompson, Kevyn; Hodges, Leslie; Crossley, Scott
The present study asked whether accuracy feedback on a meaning generation task would lead to improved contextual word learning (CWL). Active generation can facilitate learning by increasing task engagement and memory retrieval, which strengthens new word representations. However, forced generation results in increased errors, which can be…
Brosseau-Liard, Patricia; Penney, Danielle; Poulin-Dubois, Diane
Children can selectively attend to various attributes of a model, such as past accuracy or physical strength, to guide their social learning. There is a debate regarding whether a relation exists between theory-of-mind skills and selective learning. We hypothesized that high performance on theory-of-mind tasks would predict preference for learning new words from accurate informants (an epistemic attribute), but not from physically strong informants (a non-epistemic attribute). Three- and 4-year-olds (N = 65) completed two selective learning tasks, and their theory-of-mind abilities were assessed. As expected, performance on a theory-of-mind battery predicted children's preference to learn from more accurate informants but not from physically stronger informants. Results thus suggest that preschoolers with more advanced theory of mind have a better understanding of knowledge and apply that understanding to guide their selection of informants. This work has important implications for research on children's developing social cognition and early learning.
Kelly, Spencer D.; Lee, Angela L.
It is now widely accepted that hand gestures help people understand and learn language. Here, we provide an exception to this general rule--when phonetic demands are high, gesture actually hurts. Native English-speaking adults were instructed on the meaning of novel Japanese word pairs that were for non-native speakers phonetically hard (/ite/ vs.…
Comesaña, Montserrat; Soares, Ana Paula; Sánchez-Casas, Rosa; Lima, Cátia
How bilinguals represent words in two languages and which mechanisms are responsible for second language acquisition are important questions in the bilingual and vocabulary acquisition literature. This study aims to analyse the effect of two learning methods (picture- vs. word-based method) and two types of words (cognates and non-cognates) in early stages of children's L2 acquisition. Forty-eight native speakers of European Portuguese, all sixth graders (mean age = 10.87 years; SD= 0.85), participated in the study. None of them had prior knowledge of Basque (the L2 in this study). After a learning phase in which L2 words were learned either by a picture- or a word-based method, children were tested in a backward-word translation recognition task at two times (immediately vs. one week later). Results showed that the participants made more errors when rejecting semantically related than semantically unrelated words as correct translations (semantic interference effect). The magnitude of this effect was higher in the delayed test condition regardless of the learning method. Moreover, the overall performance of participants from the word-based method was better than the performance of participants from the picture-word method. Results were discussed concerning the most significant bilingual lexical processing models.
Wagner, Katie; Dobkins, Karen; Barner, David
Most current accounts of color word acquisition propose that the delay between children's first production of color words and adult-like understanding is due to problems abstracting color as a domain of meaning. Here we present evidence against this hypothesis, and show that, from the time children produce color words in a labeling task they use…
Joseph, Holly S. S. L.; Wonnacott, Elizabeth; Forbes, Paul; Nation, Kate
We know that from mid-childhood onwards most new words are learned implicitly via reading; however, most word learning studies have taught novel items explicitly. We examined incidental word learning during reading by focusing on the well-documented finding that words which are acquired early in life are processed more quickly than those acquired later. Novel words were embedded in meaningful sentences and were presented to adult readers early (day 1) or later (day 2) during a five-day exposu...
Full Text Available We examined the influence of bilingual experience and inhibitory control on the ability to learn a novel language. Using a statistical learning paradigm, participants learned words in two novel languages that were based on the International Morse Code. First, participants listened to a continuous stream of words in a Morse code language to test their ability to segment words from continuous speech. Since Morse code does not overlap in form with natural languages, interference from known languages was low. Next, participants listened to another Morse code language composed of new words that conflicted with the first Morse code language. Interference in this second language was high due to conflict between languages and due to the presence of two colliding cues (compressed pauses between words and statistical regularities that competed to define word boundaries. Results suggest that bilingual experience can improve word learning when interference from other languages is low, while inhibitory control ability can improve word learning when interference from other languages is high. We conclude that the ability to extract novel words from continuous speech is a skill that is affected both by linguistic factors, such as bilingual experience, and by cognitive abilities, such as inhibitory control.
Recognizing the growth of technology use in early learning settings, the U.S. Department of Education and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services collaborated in the development of the "Early Learning and Educational Technology Policy Brief" to promote developmentally appropriate use of technology in homes and early learning…
Korat, Ofra; Levin, Iris; Ben-Shabt, Anat; Shneor, Dafna; Bokovza, Limor
We investigated the extent to which a dictionary embedded in an e-book with static or dynamic visuals with and without printed focal words affects word learning. A pretest-posttest design was used to measure gains of expressive words' meaning and their spelling. The participants included 250 Hebrew-speaking second graders from…
Full Text Available Temporal and frontal activations have been implicated in learning of novel word forms, but their specific roles remain poorly understood. The present magnetoencephalography (MEG study examines the roles of these areas in processing newly-established word form representations. The cortical effects related to acquiring new phonological word forms during incidental learning were localized. Participants listened to and repeated back new word form stimuli that adhered to native phonology (Finnish pseudowords or were foreign (Korean words, with a subset of the stimuli recurring four times. Subsequently, a modified 1-back task and a recognition task addressed whether the activations modulated by learning were related to planning for overt articulation, while parametrically added noise probed reliance on developing memory representations during effortful perception. Learning resulted in decreased left superior temporal and increased bilateral frontal premotor activation for familiar compared to new items. The left temporal learning effect persisted in all tasks and was strongest when stimuli were embedded in intermediate noise. In the noisy conditions, native phonotactics evoked overall enhanced left temporal activation. In contrast, the frontal learning effects were present only in conditions requiring overt repetition and were more pronounced for the foreign language. The results indicate a functional dissociation between temporal and frontal activations in learning new phonological word forms: the left superior temporal responses reflect activation of newly-established word-form representations, also during degraded sensory input, whereas the frontal premotor effects are related to planning for articulation and are not preserved in noise.
Wilson, Jessica K; Baran, Bengi; Pace-Schott, Edward F; Ivry, Richard B; Spencer, Rebecca M C
Sleep benefits memory across a range of tasks for young adults. However, remarkably little is known of the role of sleep on memory for healthy older adults. We used 2 tasks, 1 assaying motor skill learning and the other assaying nonmotor/declarative learning, to examine off-line changes in performance in young (20-34 years), middle-aged (35-50 years), and older (51-70 years) adults without disordered sleep. During an initial session, conducted either in the morning or evening, participants learned a motor sequence and a list of word pairs. Memory tests were given twice, 12 and 24 hours after training, allowing us to analyze off-line consolidation after a break that included sleep or normal wake. Sleep-dependent performance changes were reduced in older adults on the motor sequence learning task. In contrast, sleep-dependent performance changes were similar for all 3 age groups on the word pair learning task. Age-related changes in sleep or networks activated during encoding or during sleep may contribute to age-related declines in motor sequence consolidation. Interestingly, these changes do not affect declarative memory.
Steele, Sara C; Willoughby, Lisa M; Mills, Monique T
Phonological and semantic deficits in spoken word learning have been documented in children with language impairment (LI), and cues that address these deficits have been shown to improve their word learning performance. However, the effects of such cues on word learning during reading remain largely unexplored. This study investigated whether (a) control, (b) phonological, (c) semantic, and (d) combined phonological-semantic conditions affected semantic word learning during reading in 9- to 11-year-old children with LI (n = 12) and with typical language (TL, n = 11) from low-income backgrounds. Children were exposed to 20 novel words across these four conditions prior to reading passages containing the novel words. After reading, a dynamic semantic assessment was given, which included oral definitions, contextual clues, and multiple choices. Results indicated that the LI group performed more poorly than the TL group in phonological and combined conditions, but not in the control or semantic conditions. Also, a similar trend for both groups was suggested, with improved performance in the semantic and combined conditions relative to the control and phonological conditions. Clinical implications include a continued need for explicit instruction in semantic properties of novel words to facilitate semantic word learning during reading in children with LI.
Mooney, R J
This paper describes an experimental comparison of seven different learning algorithms on the problem of learning to disambiguate the meaning of a word from context. The algorithms tested include statistical, neural-network, decision-tree, rule-based, and case-based classification techniques. The specific problem tested involves disambiguating six senses of the word ``line'' using the words in the current and proceeding sentence as context. The statistical and neural-network methods perform the best on this particular problem and we discuss a potential reason for this observed difference. We also discuss the role of bias in machine learning and its importance in explaining performance differences observed on specific problems.
Morrill, Tuuli H; McAuley, J Devin; Dilley, Laura C; Zdziarska, Patrycja A; Jones, Katherine B; Sanders, Lisa D
The distal prosodic patterning established at the beginning of an utterance has been shown to influence downstream word segmentation and lexical access. In this study, we investigated whether distal prosody also affects word learning in a novel (artificial) language. Listeners were exposed to syllable sequences in which the embedded words were either congruent or incongruent with the distal prosody of a carrier phrase. Local segmentation cues, including the transitional probabilities between syllables, were held constant. During a test phase, listeners rated the items as either words or nonwords. Consistent with the perceptual grouping of syllables being predicted by distal prosody, congruent items were more likely to be judged as words than were incongruent items. The results provide the first evidence that perceptual grouping affects word learning in an unknown language, demonstrating that distal prosodic effects may be independent of lexical or other language-specific knowledge.
Beals, D E
This study examines mealtimes of preschoolers' families to determine whether rare words are used in informative ways so that a child could learn their meanings. Is there an association between informative use of rare words and the child's later vocabulary? Each use of rare words in 160 transcripts was coded for whether it was informative or uninformative. Each informative exchange was coded for type of strategy used to provide support: physical or social context, prior knowledge, and semantic support. There were 1,631 exchanges around rare words. About two-thirds of these exchanges were informative uses from which the child could learn the word's meaning. The most frequent strategy used was semantic support, accounting for two-thirds of strategies used. The frequency of use of rare words was positively correlated with age-five and age-seven PPVT scores.
Mechling, Linda C; Gast, David L; Krupa, Kristin
The effects of SMART Board technology, an interactive electronic whiteboard, and a 3s constant time delay (CTD) procedure was evaluated for teaching sight word reading to students with moderate intellectual disabilties within a small group arrangment. A multiple probe design across three word sets and replicated with three students was used to evaluate the effectiveness of SMART Board technology on: (a) reading target grocery words; (b) matching grocery item photos to target grocery words; (c) reading other students' target grocery words through observational learning; and (d) matching grocery item photos to observational grocery words. Results support use of this tool to teach multiple students at one time and its effects on observational learning of non-target information.
This study looks at how much input is needed to gain enough repetition of the 1st 9,000 words of English for learning to occur. It uses corpora of various sizes and composition to see how many tokens of input would be needed to gain at least twelve repetitions and to meet most of the words at eight of the nine 1000 word family levels. Corpus sizes…
Presents some negative aspects of society's dependence on digital transformation of words by referring to works by Walter Ong and Martin Heidegger. Discusses orality, literacy and digital literacy and describes three aspects of the digital transformation of words. Compares/contrasts art with technology and discusses implications for education.…
Christ, Tanya; Wang, X. Christine
Young children learn new vocabulary with great agility and speed, but their learning is dependent on the range of words they are exposed to. Teachers can naturally facilitate children's vocabulary learning using a variety of strategies, including making conversation and posing thoughtful questions. But there is also an important role for direct…
Werchan, Denise M.; Gómez, Rebecca L.
Sleep enhances generalization in adults, but this has not been examined in toddlers. This study examined the impact of napping versus wakefulness on the generalization of word learning in toddlers when the contextual background changes during learning. Thirty 2.5-year-old children (M = 32.94, SE = 0.46) learned labels for novel categories of…
Simons, P.R.J.; Biemans, H.J.A.
In this study the effects of 7embedding regulation questions and regulation hints in a concurrent computer-assisted instruction (CAI) program aimed at learning to use a word processor were examined. This instructional shell WP-DAGOGUE controlled the interaction between the subject and the word proce
Heisler, Lori; Goffman, Lisa
A word learning paradigm was used to teach children novel words that varied in phonotactic probability and neighborhood density. The effects of frequency and density on speech production were examined when phonetic forms were nonreferential (i.e., when no referent was attached) and when phonetic forms were referential (i.e., when a referent was…
Blaiser, Kristina M.; Nelson, Peggy B.; Kohnert, Kathryn
This study examines the impact of repeated exposures on word learning of preschool children with and without hearing loss (HL) in quiet and noise conditions. Participants were 19 children with HL and 17 peers with normal hearing (NH). Children were introduced to 16 words: 8 in quiet and 8 in noise conditions. Production and identification scores…
Ricketts, Jessie; Bishop, Dorothy V. M.; Pimperton, Hannah; Nation, Kate
This study explores how children learn the meaning (semantics) and spelling patterns (orthography) of novel words encountered in story context. English-speaking children (N = 88) aged 7 to 8 years read 8 stories and each story contained 1 novel word repeated 4 times. Semantic cues were provided by the story context such that children could infer…
Case, Julie; Grigos, Maria I.
Purpose: Articulatory control and speech production accuracy were examined in children with childhood apraxia of speech (CAS) and typically developing (TD) controls within a novel word-learning task to better understand the influence of planning and programming deficits in the production of unfamiliar words. Method: Participants included 16…
Bosman, A.M.T.; Hell, J.G. van; Verhoeven, L.T.W.
In 2 experiments, the authors tested the effect of 2 types of reading on the spelling memory of strange or sound-spelling inconsistent words in Dutch students with and without learning disabilities: standard reading and regularized reading. Standard reading refers to reading the word the way it has
Hines, Sara J.
Many adolescents, especially those with learning disabilities, lack basic word identification skills. Finding motivating instructional techniques to improve word-level reading skills is increasingly difficult as students move through the grades. One technique that holds promise in motivating adolescents involves using song lyrics from their…
Imai, Mutsumi; Kita, Sotaro; Nagumo, Miho; Okada, Hiroyuki
Some words are sound-symbolic in that they involve a non-arbitrary relationship between sound and meaning. Here, we report that 25-month-old children are sensitive to cross-linguistically valid sound-symbolic matches in the domain of action and that this sound symbolism facilitates verb learning in young children. We constructed a set of novel…
Ryan, Thomas; Date, Gavin
Herein, we address the reformation of Ontario early learning. Over the next 3 years, all 4- and 5-year-olds in Ontario (Canada) will be able to attend full-day early learning with child care, before and after school provided by the Government of Ontario Ministry of Education. The benefits of such a change are both academic and societal and are…
Axelsson, Emma L; Perry, Lynn K; Scott, Emilly J; Horst, Jessica S
The current study investigated the role of spatial distance in word learning. Two-year-old children saw three novel objects named while the objects were either in close proximity to each other or spatially separated. Children were then tested on their retention for the name-object associations. Keeping the objects spatially separated from each other during naming was associated with increased retention for children with larger vocabularies. Children with a lower vocabulary size demonstrated better retention if they saw objects in close proximity to each other during naming. This demonstrates that keeping a clear view of objects during naming improves word learning for children who have already learned many words, but keeping objects within close proximal range is better for children at earlier stages of vocabulary acquisition. The effect of distance is therefore not equal across varying vocabulary sizes. The influences of visual crowding, cognitive load, and vocabulary size on word learning are discussed.
Macedonia, Manuela; Müller, Karsten; Friederici, Angela D
Vocabulary acquisition represents a major challenge in foreign language learning. Research has demonstrated that gestures accompanying speech have an impact on memory for verbal information in the speakers' mother tongue and, as recently shown, also in foreign language learning. However, the neural basis of this effect remains unclear. In a within-subjects design, we compared learning of novel words coupled with iconic and meaningless gestures. Iconic gestures helped learners to significantly better retain the verbal material over time. After the training, participants' brain activity was registered by means of fMRI while performing a word recognition task. Brain activations to words learned with iconic and with meaningless gestures were contrasted. We found activity in the premotor cortices for words encoded with iconic gestures. In contrast, words encoded with meaningless gestures elicited a network associated with cognitive control. These findings suggest that memory performance for newly learned words is not driven by the motor component as such, but by the motor image that matches an underlying representation of the word's semantics.
Full Text Available The paper presents the effect of a free word association test, content analysis and concept mapping on students’ achievements in human biology. The free word association test was used for revealing the scientific conceptual structures of 8th grade and 12th grade students, around a stimulus word – human being – and for motivating them to study human biology. The stimulus word retrieved a cluster of associations most of which were based on science education and experience. Associations with the stimulus word were analyzed and classified according to predetermined criteria and structured by means of a concept map. The stimulus word ‘human being’ was quantitatively assessed in order to find out the balance between the associations with its different aspects. On the basis of the results some connections between biology and other sciences studying the human being, were worked out. Each new topic in human biology was studied by using content analysis of the textbook and concept mapping as study tools and thus maintaining students’ motivation. Achievements of students were assessed by means of tests, observation and concept maps evaluation. The obtained data was also valuable in clarifying the complex nature of the human being, and confirming the statement that biology cannot answer all questions, concerning human nature. Inferences were made about the word association test combined with content analysis and concept map construction as an educational strategy.
Warren, David E.; Duff, Melissa C.
The human hippocampus is widely believed to be necessary for the rapid acquisition of new declarative relational memories. However, processes supporting on-line inferential word use (“fast mapping”) may also exercise a dissociable learning mechanism and permit rapid word learning without the hippocampus (Sharon et al. (2011) Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 108:1146–1151). We investigated fast mapping in severely amnesic patients with hippocampal damage (N = 4), mildly amnesic patients (N = 6), and hea...
Schiff, Rachel; Nuri Ben-Shushan, Yohi; Ben-Artzi, Elisheva
This study assessed the effect of metacognitive instruction on the spelling and word reading of Hebrew-speaking children with specific language impairment (SLI). Participants were 67 kindergarteners with SLI in a supported learning context. Children were classified into three spelling instruction groups: (a) metalinguistic instruction (ML), (b) ML…
Graf Estes, Katharine; Gluck, Stephanie Chen-Wu; Grimm, Kevin J
Native language statistical regularities about allowable phoneme combinations (i.e., phonotactic patterns) may provide learners with cues to support word learning. The current research investigated the association between infants' native language phonotactic knowledge and their word learning progress, as measured by vocabulary size. In the experiment, 19-month-old infants listened to a corpus of nonce words that contained novel phonotactic patterns. All words began with "illegal" consonant clusters that cannot occur in native (English) words. The rationale for the task was that infants with fragile phonotactic knowledge should exhibit stronger learning of the novel illegal phonotactic patterns than infants with robust phonotactic knowledge. We found that infants with smaller vocabularies showed stronger phonotactic learning than infants with larger vocabularies even after accounting for general cognition. We propose that learning about native language structure may promote vocabulary development by providing a foundation for word learning; infants with smaller vocabularies may have weaker support from phonotactics than infants with larger vocabularies. Furthermore, stored vocabulary knowledge may promote the detection of phonotactic patterns even during infancy.
Thilanga Dilum Wewalaarachchi
Full Text Available Early language acquisition is potentially complicated by the presence of many sources of variability in the speech signal. A frequent example of variability is phonological alternations, which can lead to context-driven changes in the realization of a word. The aim of the current study was to investigate effects of a highly frequent yet scarcely researched type of suprasegmental phonological alternation – tone Sandhi – on early spoken word recognition. The tone Sandhi rule investigated herein involves a tone change of the first syllable in a disyllabic unit. In accordance with third tone Sandhi, when two dipping tone syllables are juxtaposed in connected speech, the first syllable is dissimilated to a high rising tone. For example, ‘flour mill’ (unaltered pre-Sandhi form [fən(214 tʂʰɑŋ(214] undergoes tonal alternation resulting in the altered post-Sandhi form [fən(35 tʂʰɑŋ(214]. In the current study, preschoolers’ sensitivity to the effects of tone Sandhi when processing familiar words was investigated via a preferential looking paradigm. Words varied in their phonological form: words that were labeled with a phonological alternation due to Sandhi (Post-Sandhi; words that were labeled with an unaltered form when tone Sandhi was licensed (Pre-Sandhi; non-Sandhi words correctly produced (Correct Pronunciation; and words labeled with a phonological alternation of tone not associated with Sandhi rules (Mispronunciation. Post-Sandhi forms and correct pronunciations were associated with visual referents with comparable strength, with only a subtle processing cost observed for post-Sandhi forms in the time course of lexical selection. Likewise, pre-Sandhi forms and true mispronunciations were rejected as labels for visual references with comparable strength, with only subtle differences observed in the time course of lexical selection. Findings are discussed in terms of their impact on prevailing theories of lexical representation.
Simon, E.; Escudero, P.; Broersma, M.; Dziubalska-Kołaczyk, K.; Wrembel, M.; Kul, M.
This study examines the effect of proficiency in the L2 (English) and L3 (Dutch) on word learning in the L3. Learners were 92 L1 Spanish speakers with differing proficiencies in L2 and L3, and 20 native speakers of Dutch. The learners were divided into basic and advanced English and Dutch proficienc
Lehtonen, Minna; Hulten, Annika; Rodriguez-Fornells, Antoni; Cunillera, Toni; Tuomainen, Jyrki; Laine, Matti
We investigated the behavioral and brain responses (ERPs) of bilingual word recognition to three fundamental psycholinguistic factors, frequency, morphology, and lexicality, in early bilinguals vs. monolinguals. Earlier behavioral studies have reported larger frequency effects in bilinguals' nondominant vs. dominant language and in some studies…
Heisler, Lori; Goffman, Lisa
A word learning paradigm was used to teach children novel words that varied in phonotactic probability and neighborhood density. The effects of frequency and density on speech production were examined when phonetic forms were non-referential (i.e., when no referent was attached) and when phonetic forms were referential (i.e., when a referent was attached through fast mapping). Two methods of analysis were included: (1) kinematic variability of speech movement patterning; and (2) measures of segmental accuracy. Results showed that phonotactic frequency influenced the stability of movement patterning whereas neighborhood density influenced phoneme accuracy. Motor learning was observed in both non-referential and referential novel words. Forms with low phonotactic probability and low neighborhood density showed a word learning effect when a referent was assigned during fast mapping. These results elaborate on and specify the nature of interactivity observed across lexical, phonological, and articulatory domains.
Nomura, Yoshihiko; Sakamoto, Ryota
In order to get students in engineering courses to acquire a good command of English, a coursework named “English for Engineers” has been offered to senior students in the department of mechanical engineering of Mie University. The authors place much value on the coursework from the viewpoints of acquiring the ability of (1) accurate pronunciations in accordance with phonetic symbols, and (2) a series of translations from a word-for-word translation to a free one. To make the coursework more effective, the authors have developed an e-learning system. The system supports teachers in engineering departments who are normally non-professionals in English education. The results showed that the proposed system is effective for comprehending the importance on the above-mentioned two viewpoints.
Wewalaarachchi, Thilanga D; Singh, Leher
Early language acquisition is potentially complicated by the presence of many sources of variability in the speech signal. A frequent example of variability is phonological alternations, which can lead to context-driven changes in the realization of a word. The aim of the current study was to investigate effects of a highly frequent yet scarcely researched type of suprasegmental phonological alternation - tone Sandhi - on early spoken word recognition. The tone Sandhi rule investigated herein involves a tone change of the first syllable in a disyllabic unit. In accordance with third tone Sandhi, when two dipping tone syllables are juxtaposed in connected speech, the first syllable is dissimilated to a high rising tone. For example, 'flour mill' (unaltered pre-Sandhi form [(214) (214)]) undergoes tonal alternation resulting in the altered post-Sandhi form [(35) (214)]. In the current study, preschoolers' sensitivity to the effects of tone Sandhi when processing familiar words was investigated via a preferential looking paradigm. Words varied in their phonological form: one set of words was labeled with a phonological alternation due to Sandhi (Post Sandhi), one set of words was labeled with an unaltered Sandhi form (Pre Sandhi), one set consisted of non Sandhi words (Correct Pronunciation, and one set were labeled with a tonal alternation not associated with Sandhi rules (Mispronunciation). Post-Sandhi forms and correct pronunciations were associated with visual referents with comparable strength, with only a subtle processing cost observed for post-Sandhi forms in the time course of lexical selection. Likewise, pre-Sandhi forms and true mispronunciations were rejected as labels for visual references with comparable strength, with only subtle differences observed in the time course of lexical selection. Findings are discussed in terms of their impact on prevailing theories of lexical representation.
Full Text Available Learning new words is an increasingly common necessity in everyday life. External factors, among which music and social interaction are particularly debated, are claimed to facilitate this task. Due to their influence on the learner’s temporal behavior, these stimuli are able to drive the learner's attention to the correct referent of new words at the correct point in time. However, do music and social interaction impact learning behavior in the same way? The current study aims to answer this question. Native German speakers (N = 80 were requested to learn new words (pseudo-words during a contextual learning game. This learning task was performed alone with a computer or with a partner, with or without music. Results showed that music and social interaction had a different impact on the learner’s behavior: Participants tended to temporally coordinate their behavior more with a partner than with music, and in both cases more than with a computer. However, when both music and social interaction were present, this temporal coordination was hindered. These results suggest that while music and social interaction do influence participants’ learning behavior, they have a different impact. Moreover, impaired behavior when both music and a partner are present suggests that different mechanisms are employed to coordinate with the two types of stimuli. Whether one or the other approach is more efficient for word learning, however, is a question still requiring further investigation, as no differences were observed between conditions in a retrieval phase which took place immediately after the learning session. This study contributes to the literature on word learning in adults by investigating two possible facilitating factors, and has important implications for situations such as music therapy, in which music and social interaction are present at the same time.
Verga, Laura; Bigand, Emmanuel; Kotz, Sonja A
Learning new words is an increasingly common necessity in everyday life. External factors, among which music and social interaction are particularly debated, are claimed to facilitate this task. Due to their influence on the learner's temporal behavior, these stimuli are able to drive the learner's attention to the correct referent of new words at the correct point in time. However, do music and social interaction impact learning behavior in the same way? The current study aims to answer this question. Native German speakers (N = 80) were requested to learn new words (pseudo-words) during a contextual learning game. This learning task was performed alone with a computer or with a partner, with or without music. Results showed that music and social interaction had a different impact on the learner's behavior: Participants tended to temporally coordinate their behavior more with a partner than with music, and in both cases more than with a computer. However, when both music and social interaction were present, this temporal coordination was hindered. These results suggest that while music and social interaction do influence participants' learning behavior, they have a different impact. Moreover, impaired behavior when both music and a partner are present suggests that different mechanisms are employed to coordinate with the two types of stimuli. Whether one or the other approach is more efficient for word learning, however, is a question still requiring further investigation, as no differences were observed between conditions in a retrieval phase, which took place immediately after the learning session. This study contributes to the literature on word learning in adults by investigating two possible facilitating factors, and has important implications for situations such as music therapy, in which music and social interaction are present at the same time.
Full Text Available When looking for the referents of nouns, adults and young children are sensitive to cross- situational statistics (Yu & Smith, 2007; Smith & Yu, 2008. In addition, the linguistic context that a word appears in has been shown to act as a powerful attention mechanism for guiding sentence processing and word learning (Landau & Gleitman, 1985; Altmann & Kamide, 1999; Kako & Trueswell, 2000. Koehne & Crocker (2010, 2011 investigate the interaction between cross-situational evidence and guidance from the sentential context in an adult language learning scenario. Their studies reveal that these learning mechanisms interact in a complex manner: they can be used in a complementary way when context helps reduce referential uncertainty; they influence word learning about equally strongly when cross-situational and contextual evidence are in conflict; and contextual cues block aspects of cross-situational learning when both mechanisms are independently applicable. To address this complex pattern of findings, we present a probabilistic computational model of word learning which extends a previous cross-situational model (Fazly et al., 2010 with an attention mechanism based on sentential cues. Our model uses a framework that seamlessly combines the two sources of evidence in order to study their emerging pattern of interaction during the process of word learning. Simulations of the experiments of Koehne & Crocker (2010, 2011 reveal an overall patterns of results that are in line with their findings. Importantly, we demonstrate that our model does not need to explicitly assign priority to either source of evidence in order to produce these results: learning patterns emerge as a result of a probabilistic interaction between the two types of cues. Moreover, using a computational model allows us to examine the developmental trajectory of the differential roles of cross-situational and sentential cues in word learning.
Pritchard, Stephen C.; Coltheart, Max; Marinus, Eva; Castles, Anne
Phonological decoding is central to learning to read, and deficits in its acquisition have been linked to reading disorders such as dyslexia. Understanding how this skill is acquired is therefore important for characterising reading difficulties. Decoding can be taught explicitly, or implicitly learned during instruction on whole word spellings…
Højen, Anders; Nazzi, Thierry
The present study explored whether the phonological bias favoring consonants found in French-learning infants and children when learning new words (Havy & Nazzi, 2009; Nazzi, 2005) is language-general, as proposed by Nespor, Peña and Mehler (2003), or varies across languages, perhaps as a function of the phonological or lexical properties of…
Kapantzoglou, Maria; Restrepo, M. Adelaida; Thompson, Marilyn S.
Purpose: Bilingual children are often diagnosed with language impairment, although they may simply have fewer opportunities to learn English than English-speaking monolingual children. This study examined whether dynamic assessment (DA) of word learning skills is an effective method for identifying bilingual children with primary language…
A.M.B. de Groot; R.C.L. van den Brink
This chapter reviews the results of a set of experiments that examined foreign-language (FL) vocabulary learning by late learners, exploiting the paired-associate-learning (PAL) paradigm. The effects on acquisition and retention of the concreteness and frequency of the native-language (L1) words, th
Højen, Anders; Nazzi, Thierry
The present study explored whether the phonological bias favoring consonants found in French-learning infants and children when learning new words (Havy & Nazzi, 2009; Nazzi, 2005) is language-general, as proposed by Nespor, Peña, & Mehler (2003), or varies across languages, perhaps as a function...
Md.Sharif Ullah,; A.H.M. Zadidul Karim,; Munzur-ul-Mamun,; Md.Istiaq Mahbub
The inconvenience encountered by the native learners in learning Bengali is there is no digital Bengali learning system except computer which is costly and not easy to use for all. In this paper we show a low power microcontroller based Multilanguage learning system to overcome the inconvenience mentioned above. This paper depicts the design procedure and the development of its hardware and software.
Bromley, Karen; Vandenberg, Amy; White, Jennifer
Building on the work of an earlier article ["The Word Writing CAFE: Assessing Student Writing for Complexity, Accuracy, and Fluency," Dorothy J. Leal, "Reading Teacher," 59 (4) Dec 2005 (EJ738016)], these authors investigated the use of a simple assessment tool with a different audience to yield similar useful results. (Contains 3 figures and 4…
Gladfelter, Allison; Goffman, Lisa
The goal of this study was to investigate the effects of prosodic stress patterns and semantic depth on word learning. Twelve preschool-aged children with typically developing speech and language skills participated in a word learning task. Novel words with either a trochaic or iambic prosodic pattern were embedded in one of two learning conditions, either in children's stories (semantically rich) or picture matching games (semantically sparse). Three main analyses were used to measure word learning: comprehension and production probes, phonetic accuracy, and speech motor stability. Results revealed that prosodic frequency and density influence the learnability of novel words, or that there are prosodic neighborhood density effects. The impact of semantic depth on word learning was minimal and likely depends on the amount of experience with the novel words.
Cooper, Angela; Wang, Yue
Adult non-native speech perception is subject to influence from multiple factors, including linguistic and extralinguistic experience such as musical training. The present research examines how linguistic and musical factors influence non-native word identification and lexical tone perception. Groups of native tone language (Thai) and non-tone language listeners (English), each subdivided into musician and non-musician groups, engaged in Cantonese tone word training. Participants learned to identify words minimally distinguished by five Cantonese tones during training, also completing musical aptitude and phonemic tone identification tasks. First, the findings suggest that either musical experience or a tone language background leads to significantly better non-native word learning proficiency, as compared to those with neither musical training nor tone language experience. Moreover, the combination of tone language and musical experience did not provide an additional advantage for Thai musicians above and beyond either experience alone. Musicianship was found to be more advantageous than a tone language background for tone identification. Finally, tone identification and musical aptitude scores were significantly correlated with word learning success for English but not Thai listeners. These findings point to a dynamic influence of musical and linguistic experience, both at the tone dentification level and at the word learning stage.
Full Text Available A growing number of studies are addressing methodological approaches to treating anomia in persons with aphasia. What is missing from these studies are validated procedures for determining which words have the greatest potential for recovery. The current study evaluates the usefulness of several word-specific variables and one subject-specific measure in predicting success in re-learning problematic words. Methods: Two participants, YPR and ODH, presented with fluent aphasia and marked anomia. YPR’s Aphasia Quotient on the Western Aphasia Battery was 58.8; ODH’s AQ was 79.5. Stimuli were 96 pictures chosen individually for each participant from among those that they named incorrectly on multiple baselines. Subsequently, participants were presented with each picture and asked to indicate whether they could name it covertly, or “in their head.” Each subject completed a biweekly anomia treatment for these pictures. We performed separate statistical analyses for each subject. Dependent variables included whether each word was learned during treatment (Acquisition and the number of sessions required to learn each word (#Sessions. We used logistic regression models to evaluate the association of (self-reported covert naming success with Acquisition, and linear regression models to assess the relationship between (self-reported covert naming success and #Sessions. Starting with the predictors of covert naming accuracy, number of syllables (#syllables, number of phonemes (#phonemes, and frequency, we used backwards elimination methods to select the final regression models. Results: By the end of 25 treatment sessions, YPR had learned 90.2% (37/41 of the covertly correct words but only 70.4% (38/54 of the covertly incorrect words. In the unadjusted analysis, covert naming was significantly associated with Acquisition, OR=3.89, 95% CI: (1.19, 12.74, p=0.025. The result remained significant after adjustment for #phonemes (the only other predictor
Landi, Nicole; Perfetti, Charles A; Bolger, Donald J; Dunlap, Susan; Foorman, Barbara R
To acquire representations of printed words, children must attend to the written form of a word and link this form with the word's pronunciation. When words are read in context, they may be read with less attention to these features, and this can lead to poorer word form retention. Two experiments with young children (ages 5-8 years) confirmed this hypothesis. In our experiments, children attempted to read words they could not previously read, during a self-teaching period, either in context or in isolation. Later they were tested on how well they learned the words as a function of self-teaching condition (isolation or context). Consistent with previous research, children read more words accurately in context than in isolation during self-teaching; however, children had better retention for words learned in isolation. Furthermore, this benefit from learning in isolation was larger for less skilled readers. This effect of poorer word retention when words are learned in context is paradoxical because context has been shown to facilitate word identification. We discuss factors that may influence this effect of context, especially the role of children's skill level and the demands of learning new word representations at the beginning of reading instruction.
Yu, Chen; Smith, Linda B.
Recent studies show that both adults and young children possess powerful statistical learning capabilities to solve the word-to-world mapping problem. However, the underlying mechanisms that make statistical learning possible and powerful are not yet known. With the goal of providing new insights into this issue, the research reported in this…
Full Text Available In order to acquire their native languages, children must learn richly structured systems with regularities at multiple levels. While structure at different levels could be learned serially, e.g. speech segmentation coming before word-object mapping, redundancies across levels make parallel learning more efficient. For instance, a series of syllables is likely to be a word not only because of high transitional probabilities, but also because of a consistently co-occurring object. But additional statistics require additional processing, and thus might not be useful to cognitively constrained learners. We show that the structure of child-directed speech makes this problem solvable for human learners. First, a corpus of child-directed speech was recorded from parents and children engaged in a naturalistic free-play task. Analyses revealed two consistent regularities in the sentence structure of naming events. These regularities were subsequently encoded in an artificial language to which adult participants were exposed in the context of simultaneous statistical speech segmentation and word learning. Either regularity was sufficient to support successful learning, but no learning occurred in the absence of both regularities. Thus, the structure of child-directed speech plays an important role in scaffolding speech segmentation and word learning in parallel.
Hsiung, C .M.; Luo, L. F.; Chung, H. C.
Cooperative learning has many pedagogical benefits. However, if the cooperative learning teams become ineffective, these benefits are lost. Accordingly, this study developed a computer-aided assessment method for identifying ineffective teams at their early stage of dysfunction by using the Mahalanobis distance metric to examine the difference…
Peled, Shir; Schocken, Shimon
The ability to develop engaging simulations and constructive learning experiences using mobile devices is unprecedented, presenting a disruption in educational practices of historical proportions. In this paper we describe some of the unique virtues that mobile learning hold for early age mathematics education. In particular, we describe how…
Preissler, Melissa Allen
This research investigates whether children with autism learn picture, word and object relations as associative pairs or whether they understand such relations as referential. In Experiment 1, children were taught a new word (e.g. ;whisk') repeatedly paired with a novel picture. When given the picture and a previously unseen real whisk and asked to indicate a whisk, children with autism, unlike typically developing peers matched on receptive language, associated the word with the picture rather than the object. Subsequent experiments respectively confirmed that neither a bias for selecting pictures nor perseverative responding accounted for these results. Taken together, these results suggest that children with autism with cognitive difficulties are learning picture-word and picture-object relations via an associative mechanism and have difficulty understanding the symbolic nature of pictures.
Full Text Available The inconvenience encountered by the native learners in learning Bengali is there is no digital Bengali learning system except computer which is costly and not easy to use for all. In this paper we show a low power microcontroller based Multilanguage learning system to overcome the inconvenience mentioned above. This paper depicts the design procedure and the development of its hardware and software.
Words matter. They are the "atoms" of written and oral communication. Students rely on words in textbooks and other instructional resources and in classroom lectures and discussions. As instructors, there are times when we need to think carefully about the words we use. Sometimes there are problems that may not be initially apparent and we may introduce confusion when we were aiming for clarity.
Nora, Anni; Karvonen, Leena; Renvall, Hanna; Parviainen, Tiina; Kim, Jeong-Young; Service, Elisabet; Salmelin, Riitta
It is commonly thought that phonological learning is different in young children compared to adults, possibly due to the speech processing system not yet having reached full native-language specialization. However, the neurocognitive mechanisms of phonological learning in children are poorly understood. We employed magnetoencephalography (MEG) to track cortical correlates of incidental learning of meaningless word forms over two days as 6–8-year-olds overtly repeated them. Native (Finnish) pseudowords were compared with words of foreign sound structure (Korean) to investigate whether the cortical learning effects would be more dependent on previous proficiency in the language rather than maturational factors. Half of the items were encountered four times on the first day and once more on the following day. Incidental learning of these recurring word forms manifested as improved repetition accuracy and a correlated reduction of activation in the right superior temporal cortex, similarly for both languages and on both experimental days, and in contrast to a salient left-hemisphere emphasis previously reported in adults. We propose that children, when learning new word forms in either native or foreign language, are not yet constrained by left-hemispheric segmental processing and established sublexical native-language representations. Instead, they may rely more on supra-segmental contours and prosody. PMID:28158201
Full Text Available Despite a growing number of studies, the neurophysiology of adult vocabulary acquisition is still poorly understood. One reason is that paradigms that can easily be combined with neuroscientfic methods are rare. Here, we tested the efficiency of two paradigms for vocabulary (re- acquisition, and compared the learning of novel words for actions and objects. Cortical networks involved in adult native-language word processing are widespread, with differences postulated between words for objects and actions. Words and what they stand for are supposed to be grounded in perceptual and sensorimotor brain circuits depending on their meaning. If there are specific brain representations for different word categories, we hypothesized behavioural differences in the learning of action-related and object-related words. Paradigm A, with the learning of novel words for body-related actions spread out over a number of days, revealed fast learning of these new action words, and stable retention up to 4 weeks after training. The single-session Paradigm B employed objects and actions. Performance during acquisition did not differ between action-related and object-related words (time*word category: p = 0.01, but the translation rate was clearly better for object-related (79% than for action-related words (53%, p = 0.002. Both paradigms yielded robust associative learning of novel action-related words, as previously demonstrated for object-related words. Translation success differed for action- and object-related words, which may indicate different neural mechanisms. The paradigms tested here are well suited to investigate such differences with neuroscientific means. Given the stable retention and minimal requirements for conscious effort, these learning paradigms are promising for vocabulary re-learning in brain-lesioned people. In combination with neuroimaging, neuro-stimulation or pharmacological intervention, they may well advance the understanding of
Freundlieb, Nils; Ridder, Volker; Dobel, Christian; Enriquez-Geppert, Stefanie; Baumgaertner, Annette; Zwitserlood, Pienie; Gerloff, Christian; Hummel, Friedhelm C; Liuzzi, Gianpiero
Despite a growing number of studies, the neurophysiology of adult vocabulary acquisition is still poorly understood. One reason is that paradigms that can easily be combined with neuroscientfic methods are rare. Here, we tested the efficiency of two paradigms for vocabulary (re-) acquisition, and compared the learning of novel words for actions and objects. Cortical networks involved in adult native-language word processing are widespread, with differences postulated between words for objects and actions. Words and what they stand for are supposed to be grounded in perceptual and sensorimotor brain circuits depending on their meaning. If there are specific brain representations for different word categories, we hypothesized behavioural differences in the learning of action-related and object-related words. Paradigm A, with the learning of novel words for body-related actions spread out over a number of days, revealed fast learning of these new action words, and stable retention up to 4 weeks after training. The single-session Paradigm B employed objects and actions. Performance during acquisition did not differ between action-related and object-related words (time*word category: p = 0.01), but the translation rate was clearly better for object-related (79%) than for action-related words (53%, p = 0.002). Both paradigms yielded robust associative learning of novel action-related words, as previously demonstrated for object-related words. Translation success differed for action- and object-related words, which may indicate different neural mechanisms. The paradigms tested here are well suited to investigate such differences with neuroscientific means. Given the stable retention and minimal requirements for conscious effort, these learning paradigms are promising for vocabulary re-learning in brain-lesioned people. In combination with neuroimaging, neuro-stimulation or pharmacological intervention, they may well advance the understanding of language learning
Warren, David E; Duff, Melissa C
The human hippocampus is widely believed to be necessary for the rapid acquisition of new declarative relational memories. However, processes supporting on-line inferential word use ("fast mapping") may also exercise a dissociable learning mechanism and permit rapid word learning without the hippocampus (Sharon et al. (2011) Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 108:1146-1151). We investigated fast mapping in severely amnesic patients with hippocampal damage (N = 4), mildly amnesic patients (N = 6), and healthy comparison participants (N = 10) using on-line measures (eye movements) that reflected ongoing processing. All participants studied unique word-picture associations in two encoding conditions. In the explicit-encoding condition, uncommon items were paired with their names (e.g., "This is a numbat."). In the fast mapping study condition, participants heard an instruction using a novel word (e.g., "Click on the numbat.") while two items were presented (an uncommon target such as a numbat, and a common distracter such as a dog). All groups performed fast mapping well at study, and on-line eye movement measures did not reveal group differences. However, while comparison participants showed robust word learning irrespective of encoding condition, severely amnesic patients showed no evidence of learning after fast mapping or explicit encoding on any behavioral or eye-movement measure. Mildly amnesic patients showed some learning, but performance was unaffected by encoding condition. The findings are consistent with the following propositions: the hippocampus is not essential for on-line fast mapping of novel words; but is necessary for the rapid learning of arbitrary relational information irrespective of encoding conditions.
Holliman, A. J.; Gutiérrez Palma, N.; Critten, S.; Wood, C.; Cunnane, H.; Pillinger, C.
This study was designed to examine the independent contribution of prosodic sensitivity--the rhythmic patterning of speech-to word reading and spelling in a sample of early readers. Ninety-three English-speaking children aged 5-6 years old (M = 69.28 months, SD = 3.67) were assessed for their prosodic sensitivity, vocabulary knowledge,…
Full Text Available Many Open and Distance Learning (ODL providers report that their students are prone to lower rates of retention and completion than campus-based students. Against this background, there is growing interest around distance-specific learning support. The current research investigated the experiences of students during their first semester as distance learners at Massey University in New Zealand. The overarching methodology was Design-Based Research, within which phenomenological data gathering methods were used to study the experiences of twenty participants from their own point of view. Using video cameras, over twentytwo hours of self-reflections were gathered between July and November 2011 using a technique adapted from previous studies. A grounded theory approach was applied to the process of thematic data analysis. Results revealed how participants varied in their engagement with learning supports, including orientation events, outreach activity, cultural services, learning consultants, library services, fellow students, lecturers, residential courses, and other people. The discussion reflects on clusters of participants who utilised learning supports effectively, moderately and barely. The paper concludes by summarizing how the current research has had an impact on the design of learning support services at one of the world’s leading providers of distance education.
Van den Bosch, A; Bosch, Antal van den; Daelemans, Walter
Memory-based learning, keeping full memory of learning material, appears a viable approach to learning NLP tasks, and is often superior in generalisation accuracy to eager learning approaches that abstract from learning material. Here we investigate three partial memory-based learning approaches which remove from memory specific task instance types estimated to be exceptional. The three approaches each implement one heuristic function for estimating exceptionality of instance types: (i) typicality, (ii) class prediction strength, and (iii) friendly-neighbourhood size. Experiments are performed with the memory-based learning algorithm IB1-IG trained on English word pronunciation. We find that removing instance types with low prediction strength (ii) is the only tested method which does not seriously harm generalisation accuracy. We conclude that keeping full memory of types rather than tokens, and excluding minority ambiguities appear to be the only performance-preserving optimisations of memory-based learning...
, the aesthetic component seems to have been of less concern to the church fathers. Only at the beginning of the sixth century did the topic of aesthetic value begin to figure in Christian writings. Pseudo-Dionysius the Areopagite made some important observations on aesthetics in his description of the gnoseological function of symbolic images. He felt that visual symbols were the most appropriate instruments for learning about God Himself (who is beyond any definition or description that words can provide because they could at least evoke some idea of His divine nature. However, what was new in the evaluation of symbols in their gnoseological function was the idea that the beauty of these images stimulates the mind to strive to attain knowledge of the divine order that rules the universe. Visual communication and the visual arts thus cease to be regarded as mere aids to the verbal message—a sort of picture-book for the ignorant “who read in them what they cannot read in books”—and begin to be considered autonomous media that by far transcend their didactic religious function.
Henderson, Lisa; Devine, Katy; Weighall, Anna; Gaskell, Gareth
Previous studies using direct forms of vocabulary instruction have shown that newly learned words are integrated with existing lexical knowledge only "after" off-line consolidation (as measured by competition between new and existing words during spoken word recognition). However, the bulk of vocabulary acquisition during childhood…
Smeets, Daisy J H; van Dijken, Marianne J; Bus, Adriana G
Novel word learning is reported to be problematic for children with severe language impairments (SLI). In this study, we tested electronic storybooks as a tool to support vocabulary acquisition in SLI children. In Experiment 1, 29 kindergarten SLI children heard four e-books each four times: (a) two stories were presented as video books with motion pictures, music, and sounds, and (b) two stories included only static illustrations without music or sounds. Two other stories served as the control condition. Both static and video books were effective in increasing knowledge of unknown words, but static books were most effective. Experiment 2 was designed to examine which elements in video books interfere with word learning: video images or music or sounds. A total of 23 kindergarten SLI children heard 8 storybooks each four times: (a) two static stories without music or sounds, (b) two static stories with music or sounds, (c) two video stories without music or sounds, and (d) two video books with music or sounds. Video images and static illustrations were equally effective, but the presence of music or sounds moderated word learning. In children with severe SLI, background music interfered with learning. Problems with speech perception in noisy conditions may be an underlying factor of SLI and should be considered in selecting teaching aids and learning environments.
Pacton, Sébastien; Borchardt, Gaëlle; Treiman, Rebecca; Lété, Bernard; Fayol, Michel
Adults often learn to spell words during the course of reading for meaning, without intending to do so. We used an incidental learning task in order to study this process. Spellings that contained double n, r and t which are common doublets in French, were learned more readily by French university students than spellings that contained less common but still legal doublets. When recalling or recognizing the latter, the students sometimes made transposition errors, doubling a consonant that often doubles in French rather than the consonant that was originally doubled (e.g., tiddunar recalled as tidunnar). The results, found in three experiments using different nonwords and different types of instructions, show that people use general knowledge about the graphotactic patterns of their writing system together with word-specific knowledge to reconstruct spellings that they learn from reading. These processes contribute to failures and successes in memory for spellings, as in other domains.
Song, Jae Yung; Demuth, Katherine
Children's early word productions often differ from the target form, sometimes exhibiting vowel lengthening when word-final coda consonants are omitted (e.g., "dog" /d[open o]g/ [arrow right] [d[open o]:]). It has typically been assumed that such lengthening compensates for a missing prosodic unit (a mora). However, this study raises the…
Fernandez, Thalia; Harmony, Thalia; Mendoza, Omar; Lopez-Alanis, Paula; Marroquin, Jose Luis; Otero, Gloria; Ricardo-Garcell, Josefina
Learning disabilities (LD) are one of the most frequent problems for elementary school-aged children. In this paper, event-related EEG oscillations to semantically related and unrelated pairs of words were studied in a group of 18 children with LD not otherwise specified (LD-NOS) and in 16 children with normal academic achievement. We propose that…
Kim, S.; Cho, T.; McQueen, J.M.
How do Dutch and Korean listeners use acoustic–phonetic information when learning words in an artificial language? Dutch has a voiceless ‘unaspirated’ stop, produced with shortened Voice Onset Time (VOT) in prosodic strengthening environments (e.g., in domain-initial position and under prominence),
Henderson, Lisa; Powell, Anna; Gaskell, M. Gareth; Norbury, Courtenay
Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is characterized by rich heterogeneity in vocabulary knowledge and word knowledge that is not well accounted for by current cognitive theories. This study examines whether individual differences in vocabulary knowledge in ASD might be partly explained by a difficulty with consolidating newly learned spoken words…
Koening, Melissa; Woodward, Amanda
The current study examined monolingual English-speaking toddlers' (N=50) ability to learn word-referent links from native speakers of Dutch versus English, and second, whether children generalized or sequestered their extensions when terms were tested by a subsequent speaker of English. Overall, children performed better in the English than in the…
Liuzzi, Gianpiero; Freundlieb, Nils; Ridder, Volker; Hoppe, Julia; Heise, Kirstin; Zimerman, Maximo; Dobel, Christian; Enriquez-Geppert, Stefanie; Gerloff, Christian; Zwitserlood, Pienie; Hummel, Friedhelm C
Current theoretical positions assume that action-related word meanings are established by functional connections between perisylvian language areas and the motor cortex (MC) according to Hebb's associative learning principle. To test this assumption, we probed the functional relevance of the left MC
Kaefer, Tanya; Neuman, Susan B.; Pinkham, Ashley M.
The goal of the current study is to explore the influence of knowledge on socioeconomic discrepancies in word learning and comprehension. After establishing socioeconomic differences in background knowledge (Study 1), the authors presented children with a storybook that incorporates this knowledge (Study 2). Results indicated that middle-income…
Peake, Christian; Jiménez, Juan E.; Rodríguez, Cristina; Bisschop, Elaine; Villarroel, Rebeca
Arithmetic word problem (AWP) solving is a highly demanding task for children with learning disabilities (LD) since verbal and mathematical information have to be integrated. This study examines specifically how syntactic awareness (SA), the ability to manage the grammatical structures of language, affects AWP solving. Three groups of children in…
The research presented in this dissertation examined changes in brain activity associated with learning, forgetting and using a second language. The first experiment investigated the changes that occur when novice adult second language learners acquire and forget second language words. Event-related brain potentials were measured while native…
Ricketts, Jessie; Bishop, Dorothy V. M.; Nation, Kate
This study compared orthographic and semantic aspects of word learning in children who differed in reading comprehension skill. Poor comprehenders and controls matched for age (9-10 years), nonverbal ability and decoding skill were trained to pronounce 20 visually presented nonwords, 10 in a consistent way and 10 in an inconsistent way. They then…
Kingsdorf, Sheri; Krawec, Jennifer
Solving word problems is a common area of struggle for students with learning disabilities (LD). In order for instruction to be effective, we first need to have a clear understanding of the specific errors exhibited by students with LD during problem solving. Error analysis has proven to be an effective tool in other areas of math but has had…
Hilte, Maartje; Reitsma, Pieter
Spelling pronunciations are hypothesized to be helpful in building up relatively stable phonologically underpinned orthographic representations, particularly for learning words with irregular phoneme-grapheme correspondences. In a four-week computer-based training, the efficacy of spelling pronunciations and previewing the spelling patterns on…
Kirkorian, Heather L.; Choi, Koeun; Pempek, Tiffany A.
Researchers examined whether contingent experience using a touch screen increased toddlers' ability to learn a word from video. One hundred and sixteen children (24-36 months) watched an on-screen actress label an object: (a) without interacting, (b) with instructions to touch "anywhere" on the screen, or (c) with instructions to touch a…
Zhang, Dongbo; Koda, Keiko; Leong, Che Kan
This longitudinal study examined the contribution of morphological awareness to bilingual word learning of Malay-English bilingual children in Singapore where English is the medium of instruction. Participants took morphological awareness and lexical inference tasks in both English and Malay twice with an interval of about half a year, the first…
Mosse, Emma K.; Jarrold, Christopher
Purpose: Three studies investigated novel word learning, some requiring phonological production, each involving between 11 and 17 individuals with Down syndrome, and between 15 and 24 typically developing individuals matched for receptive vocabulary. The effect of stimuli wordlikeness and incidental procedure-based memory demands were examined to…
Beals, Diane E.
Examines mealtimes of preschoolers' families to determine whether rare words are used in informative ways so that a child could learn their meanings. Each use was coded for whether it was informative or uninformative; each informative exchange was coded for type of strategy used to provide support. Frequency of use was positively correlated with…
Houston-Price, Carmel; Goddard, Kate; Seclier, Catherine; Grant, Sally C.; Reid, Caitlin J. B.; Boyden, Laura E.; Williams, Rhiannon
Happe and Loth (2002) describe word learning as a "privileged domain" in the development of a theory of mind. We test this claim in a series of experiments based on the Sally-Anne paradigm. Three- and 4-year-old children's ability to represent others' false beliefs was investigated in tasks that required the child either to predict the actions of…
Niu, Ruiying; Helms-Park, Rena
This study investigates the roles of collaborative output, the modality of output, and word engagement in vocabulary learning and retention by Chinese-speaking undergraduate EFL learners. The two treatment groups reconstructed a passage that they had read in one of two ways: (1) dyadic oral interaction while producing a written report (Written…
Leacox, Lindsey; Jackson, Carla Wood
This study examined preschool and kindergarten English language learners (ELLs) attending a migrant summer programme and their vocabulary word learning during both adult-read and technology-enhanced repeated readings. In a within-subject design, 24 ELLs (four to six years old) engaged in repeated readings in a control and a treatment condition. In…
Nassaji, Hossein; Hu, Hsueh-chao Marcella
This study investigated the relationship between task-induced involvement load and ESL learners' inferencing and learning word meanings from context. Thirty-two ESL learners were randomly assigned to one of three groups, with each group receiving a different version of a text that was assumed to differ from one another in terms of the degree of…
Rowe, Meredith L.; Silverman, Rebecca D.; Mullan, Bridget E.
Previous research suggests that presenting redundant nonverbal semantic information in the form of gestures and/or pictures may aid word learning in first and foreign languages. But do nonverbal supports help all learners equally? We address this issue by examining the role of gestures and pictures as nonverbal supports for word learning in a…
Jessica Ciantar; Emma Finch; David A. Copland
The present study investigated the effect of performing an intentional non-meaningful hand movement on subsequent lexical acquisition and retrieval in healthy adults. Twenty-five right-handed healthy individuals were required to learn the names (2-syllable legal nonwords) for a series of unfamiliar objects. Participants also completed a familiar picture naming task to investigate the effects of the intentional non-meaningful movement on lexical retrieval. Results revealed that performing this...
Ripollés, Pablo; Marco-Pallarés, Josep; Hielscher, Ulrike; Mestres-Missé, Anna; Tempelmann, Claus; Heinze, Hans-Jochen; Rodríguez-Fornells, Antoni; Noesselt, Toemme
The exact neural processes behind humans' drive to acquire a new language--first as infants and later as second-language learners--are yet to be established. Recent theoretical models have proposed that during human evolution, emerging language-learning mechanisms might have been glued to phylogenetically older subcortical reward systems, reinforcing human motivation to learn a new language. Supporting this hypothesis, our results showed that adult participants exhibited robust fMRI activation in the ventral striatum (VS)--a core region of reward processing--when successfully learning the meaning of new words. This activation was similar to the VS recruitment elicited using an independent reward task. Moreover, the VS showed enhanced functional and structural connectivity with neocortical language areas during successful word learning. Together, our results provide evidence for the neural substrate of reward and motivation during word learning. We suggest that this strong functional and anatomical coupling between neocortical language regions and the subcortical reward system provided a crucial advantage in humans that eventually enabled our lineage to successfully acquire linguistic skills.
Storkel, Holly L; Hoover, Jill R
The goal of this study was to examine the influence of part-word phonotactic probability/neighborhood density on word learning by preschool children with normal vocabularies that varied in size. Ninety-eight children (age 2 ; 11-6 ; 0) were taught consonant-vowel-consonant (CVC) nonwords orthogonally varying in the probability/density of the CV (i.e. body) and VC (i.e. rhyme). Learning was measured via picture naming. Children with the lowest expressive vocabulary scores showed no effect of either CV or VC probability/density, although floor effects could not be ruled out. In contrast, children with low or high expressive vocabulary scores demonstrated sensitivity to part-word probability/density with the nature of the effect varying by group. Children with the highest expressive vocabulary scores displayed yet a third pattern of part-word probability/density effects. Taken together, word learning by preschool children was influenced by part-word probability/density but the nature of this influence appeared to depend on the size of the lexicon.
Kaushanskaya, Margarita; Gross, Megan; Buac, Milijana
We examined the effects of classroom bilingual experience in children on an array of cognitive skills. Monolingual English-speaking children were compared with children who spoke English as the native language and who had been exposed to Spanish in the context of dual-immersion schooling for an average of 2 years. The groups were compared on a measure of non-linguistic task-shifting; measures of verbal short-term and working memory; and measures of word learning. The two groups of children did not differ on measures of non-linguistic task-shifting and verbal short-term memory. However, the classroom-exposure bilingual group outperformed the monolingual group on the measure of verbal working memory and a measure of word learning. Together, these findings indicate that while exposure to a second language in a classroom setting may not be sufficient to engender changes in cognitive control, it can facilitate verbal memory and verbal learning.
Kuhl, Patricia K
Explaining how every typically developing child acquires language is one of the grand challenges of cognitive neuroscience. Historically, language learning provoked classic debates about the contributions of innately specialized as opposed to general learning mechanisms. Now, new data are being brought to bear from studies that employ magnetoencephalograph (MEG), electroencephalograph (EEG), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), and diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) studies on young children. These studies examine the patterns of association between brain and behavioral measures. The resulting data offer both expected results and surprises that are altering theory. As we uncover what it means to be human through the lens of young children, and their ability to speak, what we learn will not only inform theories of human development, but also lead to the discovery of neural biomarkers, early in life, that indicate risk for language impairment and allow early intervention for children with developmental disabilities involving language.
Mei, Leilei; Xue, Gui; Lu, Zhong-Lin; Chen, Chuansheng; Zhang, Mingxia; He, Qinghua; Wei, Miao; Dong, Qi
Learning a new language entails interactions with one׳s prior language(s). Much research has shown how native language affects the cognitive and neural mechanisms of a new language, but little is known about whether and how learning a new language shapes the neural mechanisms of prior language(s). In two experiments in the current study, we used an artificial language training paradigm in combination with an fMRI to examine (1) the effects of different linguistic components (phonology and semantics) of a new language on the neural process of prior languages (i.e., native and second languages), and (2) whether such effects were modulated by the proficiency level in the new language. Results of Experiment 1 showed that when the training in a new language involved semantics (as opposed to only visual forms and phonology), neural activity during word reading in the native language (Chinese) was reduced in several reading-related regions, including the left pars opercularis, pars triangularis, bilateral inferior temporal gyrus, fusiform gyrus, and inferior occipital gyrus. Results of Experiment 2 replicated the results of Experiment 1 and further found that semantic training also affected neural activity during word reading in the subjects׳ second language (English). Furthermore, we found that the effects of the new language were modulated by the subjects׳ proficiency level in the new language. These results provide critical imaging evidence for the influence of learning to read words in a new language on word reading in native and second languages.
Silva, Thiago C; 10.1209/0295-5075/98/58001
Complex networks have been employed to model many real systems and as a modeling tool in a myriad of applications. In this paper, we use the framework of complex networks to the problem of supervised classification in the word disambiguation task, which consists in deriving a function from the supervised (or labeled) training data of ambiguous words. Traditional supervised data classification takes into account only topological or physical features of the input data. On the other hand, the human (animal) brain performs both low- and high-level orders of learning and it has facility to identify patterns according to the semantic meaning of the input data. In this paper, we apply a hybrid technique which encompasses both types of learning in the field of word sense disambiguation and show that the high-level order of learning can really improve the accuracy rate of the model. This evidence serves to demonstrate that the internal structures formed by the words do present patterns that, generally, cannot be corre...
Nora, Anni; Hultén, Annika; Karvonen, Leena; Kim, Jeong-Young; Lehtonen, Minna; Yli-Kaitala, Hely; Service, Elisabet; Salmelin, Riitta
Incidental learning of phonological structures through repeated exposure is an important component of native and foreign-language vocabulary acquisition that is not well understood at the neurophysiological level. It is also not settled when this type of learning occurs at the level of word forms as opposed to phoneme sequences. Here, participants listened to and repeated back foreign phonological forms (Korean words) and new native-language word forms (Finnish pseudowords) on two days. Recognition performance was improved, repetition latency became shorter and repetition accuracy increased when phonological forms were encountered multiple times. Cortical magnetoencephalography responses occurred bilaterally but the experimental effects only in the left hemisphere. Superior temporal activity at 300-600 ms, probably reflecting acoustic-phonetic processing, lasted longer for foreign phonology than for native phonology. Formation of longer-term auditory-motor representations was evidenced by a decrease of a spatiotemporally separate left temporal response and correlated increase of left frontal activity at 600-1200 ms on both days. The results point to item-level learning of novel whole-word representations.
Spencer, Mercedes; Kaschak, Michael P.; Jones, John L.; Lonigan, Christopher J.
It has been demonstrated that statistical learning, or the ability to use statistical information to learn the structure of one's environment, plays a role in young children's acquisition of linguistic knowledge. Although most research on statistical learning has focused on language acquisition processes, such as the segmentation of words from…
Pereira, Alfredo; Smith, Linda; Yu, Chen
We measured turn-taking in terms of hand and head movements and asked if the global rhythm of the participants' body activity relates to word learning. Six dyads composed of parents and toddlers (M=18 months) interacted in a tabletop task wearing motion-tracking sensors on their hands and head. Parents were instructed to teach the labels of 10 novel objects and the child was later tested on a name-comprehension task. Using dynamic time warping, we compared the motion data of all body-part pairs, within and between partners. For every dyad, we also computed an overall measure of the quality of the interaction, that takes into consideration the state of interaction when the parent uttered an object label and the overall smoothness of the turn-taking. The overall interaction quality measure was correlated with the total number of words learned. In particular, head movements were inversely related to other partner's hand movements, and the degree of bodily coupling of parent and toddler predicted the words that children learned during the interaction. The implications of joint body dynamics to understanding joint coordination of activity in a social interaction, its scaffolding effect on the child's learning and its use in the development of artificial systems are discussed.
Full Text Available One of the genuine contributions of theoretical linguistics to the interdisciplinary field of applied linguistics is to elucidate the nature of what should be taught and how it should be taught. Traditionally, the input supplied in vocabulary teaching has consisted either of word lists (most often or of words-in-context (more recently. In the first case, words are treated as self-contained receptacles of meaning, and in the second case, they are considered as nodes of semantic relationships. However, recent directions in corpus-driven lexicology are exploring the gulf between the concept of a “word” and that of a “semantic unit”. The main purpose of this paper is to update some implications of this discussion for one of the applied disciplines, namely FL/L2 vocabulary teaching and learning.
Colunga, Eliana; Smith, Linda B; Gasser, Michael
The ontological distinction between discrete individuated objects and continuous substances, and the way this distinction is expressed in different languages has been a fertile area for examining the relation between language and thought. In this paper we combine simulations and a cross-linguistic word learning task as a way to gain insight into the nature of the learning mechanisms involved in word learning. First, we look at the effect of the different correlational structures on novel generalizations with two kinds of learning tasks implemented in neural networks-prediction and correlation. Second, we look at English- and Spanish-speaking 2-3-year-olds' novel noun generalizations, and find that count/mass syntax has a stronger effect on Spanish- than on English-speaking children's novel noun generalizations, consistent with the predicting networks. The results suggest that it is not just the correlational structure of different linguistic cues that will determine how they are learned, but the specific learning mechanism and task in which they are involved.
Kuhl, Patricia K.
Infants are sensitive to the statistical patterns in language input, and exposure to them alters phonetic perception. Our recent data indicate that first-time exposure to a foreign language at 9 months of age results in learning after only 5 h, suggesting a process that is fairly automatic, given natural language input. At the same time, it appears that early phonetic learning from natural language may be constrained by the need for social interaction. Our work demonstrates that infants learn phonetically when exposed to a live, but not a pre-recorded, speaker. This talk will focus on statistical learning in a social context and develop the thesis that this combination provides an ideal situation for the acquisition of a natural language.
Kaczer, Laura; Timmer, Kalinka; Bavassi, Luz; Schiller, Niels O
Our vocabulary is, at least in principle, infinite. We can create new words combining existing ones in meaningful ways to form new linguistic expressions. The present study investigated the morphological processing of novel compound words in overt speech production. Native speakers of Dutch learned a series of new compounds (e.g. appelgezicht, 'apple-face') that were later used as primes in a morphological priming task. In this protocol, primes were compound words morphologically related to a target's picture name (e.g. appelgezicht was used for a picture of an apple, Dutch appel). The novel primes were compared with corresponding familiar compounds sharing a free morpheme (e.g. appelmoes, 'applesauce') and with unrelated compounds. Participants were required to read aloud words and to name pictures in a long-lag design. Behavioral and event-related potentials (ERPs) data were collected in two sessions, separated by 48h. Clear facilitation of picture naming latencies was obtained when pictures were paired with morphological related words. Notably, our results show that novel compounds have a stronger priming effect than familiar compounds in both sessions, which is expressed in a marked reduction in target naming latencies and a decrease in the N400 amplitude. These results suggest that participants focused more on the separate constituents when reading novel primes than in the case of existing compounds.
Koenig, Melissa; Woodward, Amanda L
The current study examined monolingual English-speaking toddlers' (N=50) ability to learn word-referent links from native speakers of Dutch versus English, and second, whether children generalized or sequestered their extensions when terms were tested by a subsequent speaker of English. Overall, children performed better in the English than in the Dutch condition; however, children with high native vocabularies successfully selected the target object for terms trained in fluent Dutch. Furthermore, children with higher vocabularies did not indicate their comprehension of Dutch terms when subsequently tested by an English speaker whereas children with low vocabulary scores responded at chance levels to both the original Dutch speaker and the second English speaker. These findings demonstrate that monolingual toddlers with proficiency in their native language are capable of learning words outside of their conventional system and may be sensitive to the boundaries that exist between language systems.
Foreign language education in the twenty-first century still teaches vocabulary mainly through reading and listening activities. This is due to the link between teaching practice and traditional philosophy of language, where language is considered to be an abstract phenomenon of the mind. However, a number of studies have shown that accompanying words or phrases of a foreign language with gestures leads to better memory results. In this paper, I review behavioral research on the positive effects of gestures on memory. Then I move to the factors that have been addressed as contributing to the effect, and I embed the reviewed evidence in the theoretical framework of embodiment. Finally, I argue that gestures accompanying foreign language vocabulary learning create embodied representations of those words. I conclude by advocating the use of gestures in future language education as a learning tool that enhances the mind.
Melamud, Oren; McClosky, David; Patwardhan, Siddharth; Bansal, Mohit
We provide the first extensive evaluation of how using different types of context to learn skip-gram word embeddings affects performance on a wide range of intrinsic and extrinsic NLP tasks. Our results suggest that while intrinsic tasks tend to exhibit a clear preference to particular types of contexts and higher dimensionality, more careful tuning is required for finding the optimal settings for most of the extrinsic tasks that we considered. Furthermore, for these extrinsic tasks, we find ...
Children's English learning in China attracts more and more people's attention and is on the teidency of starting at an early age. Under the trend of "learning English from childhood", the author has explored the Criical Period Hypothesis and discussed the younger learners' dsadvantages and older learners'advantages when learning Englsh. and concludes that early-age English learning is not feasible.
Grossi, Giordana; Savill, Nicola; Thomas, Enlli; Thierry, Guillaume
We investigated the lateralization of the posterior event-related potential (ERP) component N1 (120-170 ms) to written words in two groups of bilinguals. Fourteen Early English-Welsh bilinguals and 14 late learners of Welsh performed a semantic categorization task on separate blocks of English and Welsh words. In both groups, the N1 was strongly lateralized over the left posterior sites for both languages. A robust correlation was found between N1 asymmetry for English and N1 asymmetry for Welsh words in both groups. Furthermore, in Late Bilinguals, the N1 asymmetry for Welsh words increased with years of experience in Welsh. These data suggest that, in Late Bilinguals, the lateralization of neural circuits involved in written word recognition for the second language is associated to the organization for the first language, and that increased experience with the second language is associated to a larger functional cerebral asymmetry in favor of the left hemisphere.
Bowers, J Michael; Kennison, Shelia M
The present research tested the hypothesis that the age at which one's first language (L1) words are learned influences language processing in bilinguals. Prior research on bilingual language processing by Kroll and colleagues has suggested that memory links between L1 words and conceptual representations are stronger than memory links between one's second language (L2) word and conceptual representations. We hypothesized that the strengths of memory links between L1 words and conceptual representations are stronger for words learned early in life than for words learned later in life. Support for the hypothesis was obtained in bilingual translation experiment with 36 Spanish-English bilinguals. Participants translated L1 words into L2 and L2 words into L1. Half of the L1 words were learned early in childhood (early AoA words), and half were learned later in life (late AoA words). The L2 words were translation equivalents of the L1 words tested; the average age at which L2 words were learned was age 7. Target words were presented either in random order or blocked by semantic category. Translation times were longer when trials were blocked by semantic category (i.e., categorical interference) occurred only when early AoA L1 words were translated into L2. Implications for current models of bilingual memory are discussed.
Wong, Francis C K; Chandrasekaran, Bharath; Garibaldi, Kyla; Wong, Patrick C M
According to the dual stream model of auditory language processing, the dorsal stream is responsible for mapping sound to articulation and the ventral stream plays the role of mapping sound to meaning. Most researchers agree that the arcuate fasciculus (AF) is the neuroanatomical correlate of the dorsal steam; however, less is known about what constitutes the ventral one. Nevertheless, two hypotheses exist: one suggests that the segment of the AF that terminates in middle temporal gyrus corresponds to the ventral stream, and the other suggests that it is the extreme capsule that underlies this sound-to-meaning pathway. The goal of this study was to evaluate these two competing hypotheses. We trained participants with a sound-to-word learning paradigm in which they learned to use a foreign phonetic contrast for signaling word meaning. Using diffusion tensor imaging, a brain-imaging tool to investigate white matter connectivity in humans, we found that fractional anisotropy in the left parietal-temporal region positively correlated with the performance in sound-to-word learning. In addition, fiber tracking revealed a ventral pathway, composed of the extreme capsule and the inferior longitudinal fasciculus, that mediated auditory comprehension. Our findings provide converging evidence supporting the importance of the ventral steam, an extreme capsule system, in the frontal-temporal language network. Implications for current models of speech processing are also discussed.
Reinisch, E.; Jesse, A.; McQueen, J.M.
For optimal word recognition listeners should use all relevant acoustic information as soon as it comes available. Using printed-word eye tracking we investigated when during word processing Dutch listeners use suprasegmental lexical stress information to recognize words. Fixations on targets such a
Newman, Rochelle S; German, Diane J
This investigation studied the influence of lexical factors, known to impact lexical access in adults, on the word retrieval of children. Participants included 320 typical and atypical (word-finding difficulties) language-learning children, ranging in age from 7 to 12 years. Lexical factors examined included word frequency, age-of-acquisition, neighborhood density, neighborhood frequency, and stress pattern. Findings indicated that these factors did influence lexical access in children. Words which were high in frequency and neighborhood frequency, low in neighborhood density and age-of-acquisition, and which contained the typical stress pattern for the language were easier to name. Further, the number of neighbors that were more frequent than the target word also had an effect on the word's ease of retrieval. Significant interactions indicated that age-of-acquisition effects decreased with maturation for typically-learning children whereas these effects continued to impact the lexical access of children with word-finding difficulties across the ages studied, suggesting that these children's difficulties in accessing words may have prevented them from developing strong access paths to these words. These findings support a view of lexical access in which access paths to words become strengthened with successful use.
Huang, Lan; Du, Youfu; Chen, Gongyang
Unlike English, the Chinese language has no space between words. Segmenting texts into words, known as the Chinese word segmentation (CWS) problem, thus becomes a fundamental issue for processing Chinese documents and the first step in many text mining applications, including information retrieval, machine translation and knowledge acquisition. However, for the geoscience subject domain, the CWS problem remains unsolved. Although a generic segmenter can be applied to process geoscience documents, they lack the domain specific knowledge and consequently their segmentation accuracy drops dramatically. This motivated us to develop a segmenter specifically for the geoscience subject domain: the GeoSegmenter. We first proposed a generic two-step framework for domain specific CWS. Following this framework, we built GeoSegmenter using conditional random fields, a principled statistical framework for sequence learning. Specifically, GeoSegmenter first identifies general terms by using a generic baseline segmenter. Then it recognises geoscience terms by learning and applying a model that can transform the initial segmentation into the goal segmentation. Empirical experimental results on geoscience documents and benchmark datasets showed that GeoSegmenter could effectively recognise both geoscience terms and general terms.
Jessica S Horst
Full Text Available Although reading storybooks to preschool children is a common activity believed to improve language skills, how children learn new vocabulary from being to has been largely neglected in the shared storybook reading literature. The current study systematically explores the effects of repeatedly reading the same storybooks on both young children's fast and slow mapping ability. Specially created storybooks were read to 3-year-old children three times during the course of one week. Each of the nine storybooks contained two novel word-object pairs. At each session, children either heard three different stories with the same two novel name-object pairs or the same story three times. All children heard each novel name the same number of times. A four-alternative forced-choice task with pictures of the objects was used to test both immediate recall and retention. Children who heard the same stories repeatedly were very accurate on both the immediate recall and retention tasks. In contrast, children who heard different stories were only accurate on immediate recall during the last two sessions and failed to learn any of the new words. Overall, then, we found a dramatic increase in children’s ability to both recall and retain novel word-object associations encountered during shared storybook reading when they heard the same stories multiple times in succession. Results are discussed in terms of contextual cueing effects observed in other cognitive domains.
Powell, Daisy; Plaut, David; Funnell, Elaine
The Plaut, McClelland, Seidenberg and Patterson (1996) connectionist model of reading was evaluated at two points early in its training against reading data collected from British children on two occasions during their first year of literacy instruction. First, the network's non-word reading was poor relative to word reading when compared with the…
Bice, Kinsey; Kroll, Judith F
Research on proficient bilinguals has demonstrated that both languages are always active, even when only one is required. The coactivation of the two languages creates both competition and convergence, facilitating the processing of cognate words, but slowing lexical access when there is a requirement to engage control mechanisms to select the target language. Critically, these consequences are evident in the native language (L1) as well as in the second language (L2). The present study questioned whether L1 changes can be detected at early stages of L2 learning and how they are modulated by L2 proficiency. Native English speakers learning Spanish performed an English (L1) lexical decision task that included cognates while event-related potentials were recorded. They also performed verbal fluency, working memory, and inhibitory control tasks. A group of matched monolinguals performed the same tasks in English only. The results revealed that intermediate learners demonstrate a reduced N400 for cognates compared with noncognates in English (L1), and an emerging effect is visually present in beginning learners as well; however, no behavioral cognate effect was present for either group. In addition, slower reaction times in English (L1) are related to a larger cognate N400 magnitude in English (L1) and Spanish (L2), and to better inhibitory control for learners but not for monolinguals. The results suggest that contrary to the claim that L2 affects L1 only when L2 speakers are highly proficient, L2 learning begins to impact L1 early in the development of the L2 skill.
Many authors have argued that word-learning constraints help guide a word-learner's hypotheses as to the meaning of a newly heard word. One such class of constraints derives from the observation that word-learners of all ages prefer to map novel labels to novel objects in situations of referential ambiguity. In this paper I use eye-tracking to…
Batterink, Laura; Neville, Helen J
Millions of adults worldwide are faced with the task of learning a second language (L2). Understanding the neural mechanisms that support this learning process is an important area of scientific inquiry. However, most previous studies on the neural mechanisms underlying L2 acquisition have focused on characterizing the results of learning, relying upon end-state outcome measures in which learning is assessed after it has occurred, rather than on the learning process itself. In this study, we adopted a novel and more direct approach to investigate neural mechanisms engaged during L2 learning, in which we recorded ERPs from beginning adult learners as they were exposed to an unfamiliar L2 for the first time. Learners' proficiency in the L2 was then assessed behaviorally using a grammaticality judgment task, and ERP data acquired during initial L2 exposure were sorted as a function of performance on this task. High-proficiency learners showed a larger N100 effect to open-class content words compared with closed-class function words, whereas low-proficiency learners did not show a significant N100 difference between open- and closed-class words. In contrast, amplitude of the N400 word category effect correlated with learners' L2 comprehension, rather than predicting syntactic learning. Taken together, these results indicate that learners who spontaneously direct greater attention to open- rather than closed-class words when processing L2 input show better syntactic learning, suggesting a link between selective attention to open-class content words and acquisition of basic morphosyntactic rules. These findings highlight the importance of selective attention mechanisms for L2 acquisition.
Burt, Jennifer S; Long, Julia
In Experiment 1, 62 10-year-old children studied printed pseudowords with semantic information. The items were later represented in a different format for reading, with half of the items spelled in the same way as before and half displayed in a new phonologically equivalent spelling. In a dictation test, the exposure to an alternative spelling substantially increased the number of errors that matched the alternative spelling, especially in good spellers. Orthographic learning predicted word identification when accuracy on orthographic choice for words was controlled. In Experiment 2, the effects on dictation responses of exposure to a misspelling versus the correct spelling, and the interactive effect of spelling ability, were confirmed relative to a no-exposure control in adults. The results support a single-lexicon view of reading and spelling and have implications for abstractionist and instance-based theories of orthographic representations.
Kapalková, Svetlana; Polišenská, Kamila; Süssová, Martina
A training study examined novel word learning in 2-year-old children and assessed two nonverbal mechanisms, pictures and gestures, which are commonly used as communication support. The aim was to (1) compare these two support mechanisms and measure their effects on expressive word learning and (2) to investigate these effects on word production…
Samuelsson, Ingrid Pramling; Carlsson, Maj Asplund
From children's own perspective, play and learning are not always separate in practices during early years. The purpose of this article is, first, to scrutinise the background and character of early years education in terms of play and learning. Second, to elaborate the findings of several years of research about children's learning in preschool…
Majerus, Steve; Boukebza, Claire
Although recent studies suggest a strong association between short-term memory (STM) for serial order and lexical development, the precise mechanisms linking the two domains remain to be determined. This study explored the nature of these mechanisms via a microanalysis of performance on serial order STM and novel word learning tasks. In the experiment, 6- and 7-year-old children were administered tasks maximizing STM for either item or serial order information as well as paired-associate learning tasks involving the learning of novel words, visual symbols, or familiar word pair associations. Learning abilities for novel words were specifically predicted by serial order STM abilities. A measure estimating the precision of serial order coding predicted the rate of correct repetitions and the rate of phoneme migration errors during the novel word learning process. In line with recent theoretical accounts, these results suggest that serial order STM supports vocabulary development via ordered and detailed reactivation of the novel phonological sequences that characterize new words.
This paper focuses on the development of Prosodic Word shapes in Catalan, a language which differs from both Spanish and English in the distribution of PW structures. Of particular interest are the truncations of initial unstressed syllables, and how these develop over time. Developmental qualitative and quantitative data from seven Catalan-speaking children reveal that maximality constraints are active at two stages, namely, the moraic trochee stage, and the bisyllabic foot stage. One of the noteworthy differences between Catalan and Spanish is the rate of acquisition of weak initial syllables in WS words, as Catalan learners omit initial syllables in WS target iambs for a significantly longer time than Spanish learners, despite the fact that Catalan is a language where the bisyllabic iambic WS pattern is more frequent than in Spanish. We claim that this asymmetry in the course of development of PWs can be attributed to the frequency of exposure to different metrical models. In Catalan (and also in English), the high frequency of CVC structures boosts the availability of the moraic trochee in initial stages. Thus the data provide crucial evidence that children at early stages of PW production are especially sensitive to the frequency distribution of foot structure in the input. In general, the behavior of Catalan PW acquisition significantly supports the idea that the course of PW development is strongly influenced by language-specific distributions of prosodic structures (especially feet) in the target language (see Demuth, 1996a, 2001a, 2003; Lleó, 2002; Prieto, Bosch-Baliarda, and Saceda-Ulloa, 2005; and Zamuner, Gerken, and Hammond, 2004, among others).
Full Text Available To test whether word-level information facilitates the learning of phonetic categories, 40 adult native English speakers were exposed to a bimodal distribution of vowels embedded in non-words. Half of the subjects received phonetic categories aligned with lexical categories, while the other half received no such cue. It was hypothesized that the subjects exposed to lexically-informative training stimuli that were aligned with the target categories would outperform the control subjects on a perceptual categorization task after training. While the results revealed no such group differences, the data indicated that many subjects used the relevant dimension for categorization before having received any training. Implications regarding experimental design and suggestions for future research based on the results are discussed.
Huang, Tzu-Hua; Liu, Yuan-Chen; Chang, Hsiu-Chen
This study developed a computer-assisted mathematical problem-solving system in the form of a network instruction website to help low-achieving second- and third-graders in mathematics with word-based addition and subtraction questions in Taiwan. According to Polya's problem-solving model, the system is designed to guide these low-achievers…
Full Text Available Rapid vocabulary learning in children has been attributed to "fast mapping", with new words often claimed to be learned through a single presentation. As reported in 2004 in Science a border collie (Rico not only learned to identify more than 200 words, but fast mapped the new words, remembering meanings after just one presentation. Our research tests the fast mapping interpretation of the Science paper based on Rico's results, while extending the demonstration of large vocabulary recognition to a lap dog. We tested a Yorkshire terrier (Bailey with the same procedures as Rico, illustrating that Bailey accurately retrieved randomly selected toys from a set of 117 on voice command of the owner. Second we tested her retrieval based on two additional voices, one male, one female, with different accents that had never been involved in her training, again showing she was capable of recognition by voice command. Third, we did both exclusion-based training of new items (toys she had never seen before with names she had never heard before embedded in a set of known items, with subsequent retention tests designed as in the Rico experiment. After Bailey succeeded on exclusion and retention tests, a crucial evaluation of true mapping tested items previously successfully retrieved in exclusion and retention, but now pitted against each other in a two-choice task. Bailey failed on the true mapping task repeatedly, illustrating that the claim of fast mapping in Rico had not been proven, because no true mapping task had ever been conducted with him. It appears that the task called retention in the Rico study only demonstrated success in retrieval by a process of extended exclusion.
Griebel, Ulrike; Oller, D Kimbrough
Rapid vocabulary learning in children has been attributed to "fast mapping", with new words often claimed to be learned through a single presentation. As reported in 2004 in Science a border collie (Rico) not only learned to identify more than 200 words, but fast mapped the new words, remembering meanings after just one presentation. Our research tests the fast mapping interpretation of the Science paper based on Rico's results, while extending the demonstration of large vocabulary recognition to a lap dog. We tested a Yorkshire terrier (Bailey) with the same procedures as Rico, illustrating that Bailey accurately retrieved randomly selected toys from a set of 117 on voice command of the owner. Second we tested her retrieval based on two additional voices, one male, one female, with different accents that had never been involved in her training, again showing she was capable of recognition by voice command. Third, we did both exclusion-based training of new items (toys she had never seen before with names she had never heard before) embedded in a set of known items, with subsequent retention tests designed as in the Rico experiment. After Bailey succeeded on exclusion and retention tests, a crucial evaluation of true mapping tested items previously successfully retrieved in exclusion and retention, but now pitted against each other in a two-choice task. Bailey failed on the true mapping task repeatedly, illustrating that the claim of fast mapping in Rico had not been proven, because no true mapping task had ever been conducted with him. It appears that the task called retention in the Rico study only demonstrated success in retrieval by a process of extended exclusion.
Abbott, Robert D.; Fayol, Michel; Zorman, Michel; Casalis, Séverine; Nagy, William; Berninger, Virginia W.
Two longitudinal studies of word reading, spelling, and reading comprehension identified commonalities and differences in morphophonemic orthographies--French (Study 1, n = 1,313) or English (Study 2, n = 114) in early childhood (Grade 2)and middle childhood (Grade 5). For French and English, statistically significant concurrent relationships…
Salillas, Elena; Wicha, Nicole Y Y
Language and math are intertwined during children's learning of arithmetic concepts, but the importance of language in adult arithmetic processing is less clear. To determine whether early learning plays a critical role in the math-language connection in adults, we tested retrieval of simple multiplication in adult bilinguals who learned arithmetic in only one language. We measured electrophysiological and behavioral responses during correctness judgments for problems presented as digits or as number words in Spanish or English. Problems presented in the language in which participants learned arithmetic elicited larger, more graded, and qualitatively different brain responses than did problems presented in participants' other language, and these responses more closely resembled responses for digits, even when participants' other language was more dominant. These findings suggest that the memory networks for simple multiplication are established when arithmetic concepts are first learned and are independent of language dominance in adulthood.
Full Text Available To construct their first lexicon, infants must determine the relationship between native phonological variation and the meanings of words. This process is arguably more complex for bilingual learners who are often confronted with phonological conflict: phonological variation that is lexically relevant in one language may be lexically irrelevant in the other. In a series of four experiments, the present study investigated English-Mandarin bilingual infants’ abilities to negotiate phonological conflict introduced by learning both a tone and a non-tone language. In a novel word learning task, bilingual children were tested on their sensitivity to tone variation in English and Mandarin contexts. Their abilities to interpret tone variation in a language-dependent manner were compared to those of monolingual Mandarin learning infants. Results demonstrated that at 12 to 13 months, bilingual infants demonstrated the ability to bind tone to word meanings in Mandarin, but to disregard tone variation when learning new words in English. In contrast, monolingual learners of Mandarin did not show evidence of integrating tones into word meanings in Mandarin at the same age even though they were learning a tone language. However, a tone discrimination paradigm confirmed that monolingual Mandarin learning infants were able to tell these tones apart at 12 to 13 months under a different set of conditions. Later, at 17 to 18 months, monolingual Mandarin learners were able to bind tone variation to word meanings when learning new words. Our findings are discussed in terms of cognitive adaptations associated with bilingualism that may ease the negotiation of phonological conflict and facilitate precocious uptake of certain properties of each language.
Mother tongue acquisition starts with words and grammar acquired spontaneously by means of communication, while at school foreign language learning takes place based on grammar. Vocabulary learning is very often neglected or rather it turns into an individual activity. The present study, which is considered to be unique on its own, is to reveal…
Mudiappa, Michael; Kluczniok, Katharina
Studies show the important role of the home learning environment in early childhood for later school success. This article focuses on a particular aspect of the home learning environment: visits to cultural learning places (e.g. museums) as a component of the quality of the home learning environment. Therefore the educational concept of…
Ma, Tengfei; Chen, Ran; Dunlap, Susan; Chen, Baoguo
This paper presents the results of an experiment that investigated the effects of number and presentation order of high-constraint sentences on semantic processing of unknown second language (L2) words (pseudowords) through reading. All participants were Chinese native speakers who learned English as a foreign language. In the experiment, sentence constraint and order of different constraint sentences were manipulated in English sentences, as well as L2 proficiency level of participants. We found that the number of high-constraint sentences was supportive for L2 word learning except in the condition in which high-constraint exposure was presented first. Moreover, when the number of high-constraint sentences was the same, learning was significantly better when the first exposure was a high-constraint exposure. And no proficiency level effects were found. Our results provided direct evidence that L2 word learning benefited from high quality language input and first presentations of high quality language input. PMID:27695432
Ma, Tengfei; Chen, Ran; Dunlap, Susan; Chen, Baoguo
This paper presents the results of an experiment that investigated the effects of number and presentation order of high-constraint sentences on semantic processing of unknown second language (L2) words (pseudowords) through reading. All participants were Chinese native speakers who learned English as a foreign language. In the experiment, sentence constraint and order of different constraint sentences were manipulated in English sentences, as well as L2 proficiency level of participants. We found that the number of high-constraint sentences was supportive for L2 word learning except in the condition in which high-constraint exposure was presented first. Moreover, when the number of high-constraint sentences was the same, learning was significantly better when the first exposure was a high-constraint exposure. And no proficiency level effects were found. Our results provided direct evidence that L2 word learning benefited from high quality language input and first presentations of high quality language input.
Full Text Available Online videos, particularly those on YouTube, have proliferated on the internet; watching them has become part of our everyday activity. While libraries have often harnessed the power of videos to create their own promotional and informational videos, few have created their own teaching and learning tools beyond screencasting videos. In the summer of 2010, the authors, two librarians at York University, decided to work on a video project which culminated in a series of instructional videos entitled “Learning: In Our Own Words.” The purpose of the video project was twofold: to trace the “real” experience of incoming students and their development of academic literacies skills (research, writing and learning throughout their first year, and to create videos that librarians and other instructors could use as instructional tools to engage students in critical thinking and discussion. This paper outlines the authors’ experience filming the videos, creating a teaching guide, and screening the videos in the classroom. Lessons learned during this initiative are discussed in the hope that more libraries will develop videos as teaching and learning tools.
Full Text Available Semantic searching seeks to improve search accuracy of the search engine by understanding searcher’s intent and the contextual meaning of the terms present in the query to retrieve more relevant results. To find out the semantic similarity between the query terms, WordNet is used as the underlying reference database. Various approaches of Learning to Rank are compared. A new hybrid learning system is introduced which combines learning using Neural Network and Support Vector Machine. As the size of the training set highly affects the performance of the Neural Network, we have used Support Vector Machine to reduce the size of the data set by extracting support vectors that are critical for the learning. The data set containing support vectors is then used for learning a ranking function using Neural Network. The proposed system is compared with RankNet. The experimental results demonstrated very promising performance improvements. For experiments, we have used English-Hindi parallel corpus, Gyannidhi from CDAC. F-measure and Average Interpolated Precision are used for evaluation.
Astheimer, Lori B; Sanders, Lisa D
Event-related potential (ERP) evidence indicates that listeners selectively attend to word onsets in continuous speech, but the reason for this preferential processing is unknown. The current study measured ERPs elicited by syllable onsets in an artificial language to test the hypothesis that listeners direct attention to word onsets because their identity is unpredictable. Both before and after recognition training, participants listened to a continuous stream of six nonsense words arranged in pairs, such that the second word in each pair was completely predictable. After training, first words in pairs elicited a larger negativity beginning around 100 ms after onset. This effect was not evident for the completely predictable second words in pairs. These results suggest that listeners are most likely to attend to the segments in speech that they are least able to predict.
Full Text Available Sound symbolism is increasingly understood as involving iconicity, or perceptual analogies and cross-modal correspondences between form and meaning, but the search for its functional and neural correlates is ongoing. Here we study how people learn sound-symbolic words, using behavioural, electrophysiological and individual difference measures. Dutch participants learned Japanese ideophones —lexical sound- symbolic words— with a translation of either the real meaning (in which form and meaning show cross-modal correspondences or the opposite meaning (in which form and meaning show cross-modal clashes. Participants were significantly better at identifying the words they learned in the real condition, correctly remembering the real word pairing 86.7% of the time, but the opposite word pairing only 71.3% of the time. Analysing event-related potentials (ERPs during the test round showed that ideophones in the real condition elicited a greater P3 component and late positive complex than ideophones in the opposite condition. In a subsequent forced choice task, participants were asked to guess the real translation from two alternatives. They did this with 73.0% accuracy, well above chance level even for words they had encountered in the opposite condition, showing that people are generally sensitive to the sound-symbolic cues in ideophones. Individual difference measures showed that the ERP effect in the test round of the learning task was greater for participants who were more sensitive to sound symbolism in the forced choice task. The main driver of the difference was a lower amplitude of the P3 component in response to ideophones in the opposite condition, suggesting that people who are more sensitive to sound symbolism may have more difficulty to suppress conflicting cross-modal information. The findings provide new evidence that cross-modal correspondences between sound and meaning facilitate word learning, while cross-modal clashes make word
Mirman, Daniel; Estes, Katharine Graf; Magnuson, James S.
Statistical learning mechanisms play an important role in theories of language acquisition and processing. Recurrent neural network models have provided important insights into how these mechanisms might operate. We examined whether such networks capture two key findings in human statistical learning. In Simulation 1, a simple recurrent network…
Larochette, Anne-Claire; Harrison, Allyson G
The purpose of this study was to evaluate Word Memory Test (WMT) performances in students with identified learning disabilities (LDs) providing good effort to examine the influence of severe reading or learning problems on WMT performance. Participants were 63 students with LDs aged 11 to 14 years old (M = 12.19 years), who completed psychoeducational assessments as part of a transition program to secondary school. Participants were administered a battery of psychodiagnostic tests including the WMT. Results indicated that 9.5% of students with LD met Criterion A on the WMT (i.e., perform below cut-offs on any of the first three subtests of the WMT), but less than 1% met both criteria necessary for identification of low effort. Failure on the first three subtests of the WMT was associated with word reading at or below the 1st percentile and severely impaired phonetic decoding and phonological awareness skills. These results indicate that the majority of students with a history of LD are capable of passing the WMT, and use of profile analysis reduces the false-positive rate to below 1%.
HU Xiao; XIAO Jun
Traditional ways of English learning such as memorizing a certain couple of words and reciting from the word list seem much easier than developing a useful vocabulary for L2 learners. However, learners complain that they have suffered from couples of difficulties as the words are easy to be forgotten. Compare with the ways of mechanical memorizing, it argues that pro⁃viding L2 learners with the development of useful lexical knowledge such as semantic information and morphological structure is more effective in the process of language acquisition. Moreover, developing a useful lexical knowledge is far more complicated for English learners.
Children can acquire knowledge of their mother tongue easily in a relatively short time,whereas adults are too inferior to bear the comparison in learning a second language.This paper sets out to study the background and process of children’s and adults’ language learning,make comparison and contrast,and find out an effective way to promote adults’ second language learning.
Verhagen, Wim G. M.; Aarnoutse, Cor A. J.; van Leeuwe, Jan F. J.
Effects of phonemic awareness and naming speed on the speed and accuracy of Dutch children's word recognition were investigated in a longitudinal study. Both the speed and accuracy of word recognition at the end of Grade 2 were predicted by naming speed from both kindergarten and Grade 1, after control for autoregressive relations, kindergarten…
Leyla Vakili S AMIYAN
Full Text Available Guessing the meaning of unknown vocabularies within a text is a way of learning new words which is named textual vocabulary acquisition. The main purpose of this study is to investigate the effectiveness of a textual guessing strategy on vocabulary learning at the intermediate le vel. Textual guessing strategy is to guess the meaning of vocabularies with the help of surrounding words or sentences in the co - text without any translation. This paper reports the findings of two quantitative studies conducted on English language learner s with the Intermediate 2 level of proficiency in Kavosh foreign language institute, Mashhad, Iran. Twenty male and female attendants were selected and assigned to ’context’ and ‘non - context’ groups. The context group received an instruction to infer the m eaning of new words while the non - context participants were treated as learning new vocabularies individually (autonomously. The result of the independent sample t - test at the post - test stage revealed that the probability value of t - test with an equality of variances assumption is lower than 0.05 (0.04700. So this result represented that there is a meaningful difference between the experimental group and the control group considering their amount of learning. The results indicated that textual guessing s trategy had more effect on their long term memory. It was also revealed that the words learned through context are used more frequently than those learned in isolation in the speaking repertoire of the participants.
Blair, Clancy; Ursache, Alexandra; Greenberg, Mark; Vernon-Feagans, Lynne
The relation of self-regulation measured prior to school entry to developing math and reading ability in prekindergarten through the second grade was examined in a prospective longitudinal sample of 1,292 children and families in predominantly rural and low-income communities in 2 regions of high poverty in the United States. Direct assessments of executive function, effortful control, and stress response physiology (indexed by resting levels of cortisol and alpha amylase obtained from saliva) were measured at child age 48 months and parents and teachers reported on children’s effortful control using temperament rating scales at child age approximately 60 months. Math and reading ability, as measured by the Woodcock-Johnson III applied problems and letter–word subtests, respectively, were measured at prekindergarten through the second grade. Effects for self-regulation measures were seen primarily for initial level and to some extent growth in both mathematics and reading, even when controlling for family demographic characteristics that represent relevant selection factors into higher levels of both self-regulation and academic achievement. These effects persisted for mathematics but not for reading with the inclusion of child cognitive abilities, vocabulary, and speed of processing measured in prekindergarten, concurrent with the first time point for the academic measures. Results are interpreted as indicating a role for self-regulation in learning ability generally, likely through support for attention and reasoning abilities that are most specific to the assessment of mathematics in this analysis. Implications for instruction and for assessment and the best ways to support the development of early math and reading ability for children at risk for school failure are discussed. PMID:25688999
Quam, Carolyn; Creel, Sarah C
Previous research has mainly considered the impact of tone-language experience on ability to discriminate linguistic pitch, but proficient bilingual listening requires differential processing of sound variation in each language context. Here, we ask whether Mandarin-English bilinguals, for whom pitch indicates word distinctions in one language but not the other, can process pitch differently in a Mandarin context vs. an English context. Across three eye-tracked word-learning experiments, results indicated that tone-intonation bilinguals process tone in accordance with the language context. In Experiment 1, 51 Mandarin-English bilinguals and 26 English speakers without tone experience were taught Mandarin-compatible novel words with tones. Mandarin-English bilinguals out-performed English speakers, and, for bilinguals, overall accuracy was correlated with Mandarin dominance. Experiment 2 taught 24 Mandarin-English bilinguals and 25 English speakers novel words with Mandarin-like tones, but English-like phonemes and phonotactics. The Mandarin-dominance advantages observed in Experiment 1 disappeared when words were English-like. Experiment 3 contrasted Mandarin-like vs. English-like words in a within-subjects design, providing even stronger evidence that bilinguals can process tone language-specifically. Bilinguals (N = 58), regardless of language dominance, attended more to tone than English speakers without Mandarin experience (N = 28), but only when words were Mandarin-like-not when they were English-like. Mandarin-English bilinguals thus tailor tone processing to the within-word language context.
Quam, Carolyn; Creel, Sarah C.
Previous research has mainly considered the impact of tone-language experience on ability to discriminate linguistic pitch, but proficient bilingual listening requires differential processing of sound variation in each language context. Here, we ask whether Mandarin-English bilinguals, for whom pitch indicates word distinctions in one language but not the other, can process pitch differently in a Mandarin context vs. an English context. Across three eye-tracked word-learning experiments, results indicated that tone-intonation bilinguals process tone in accordance with the language context. In Experiment 1, 51 Mandarin-English bilinguals and 26 English speakers without tone experience were taught Mandarin-compatible novel words with tones. Mandarin-English bilinguals out-performed English speakers, and, for bilinguals, overall accuracy was correlated with Mandarin dominance. Experiment 2 taught 24 Mandarin-English bilinguals and 25 English speakers novel words with Mandarin-like tones, but English-like phonemes and phonotactics. The Mandarin-dominance advantages observed in Experiment 1 disappeared when words were English-like. Experiment 3 contrasted Mandarin-like vs. English-like words in a within-subjects design, providing even stronger evidence that bilinguals can process tone language-specifically. Bilinguals (N = 58), regardless of language dominance, attended more to tone than English speakers without Mandarin experience (N = 28), but only when words were Mandarin-like—not when they were English-like. Mandarin-English bilinguals thus tailor tone processing to the within-word language context. PMID:28076400
Full Text Available The article aims at showing how Shakespeare relied on the medical vocabulary shared by his coeval society, which had, for centuries, been witnessing the continuous process of vernacularization of ancient and medieval scientific texts. After outlining the state of early modern medicine, the author presents and discusses the results of her search for relevant medical terms in nine plays by Shakespeare. In order to do this, a wide range of medical treatises has been analysed (either directly or through specific corpora such as Medieval English Medical Texts, MEMT 2005, and Early Modern English Medical Texts, EMEMT 2010, so as to verify the ancestry or the novelty of Shakespearean medical words. In addition to this, the author has also built a corpus of word types derived from seventeenth-century quack doctors’ handbills, with the purpose of creating a word list of medical terms connected to popular rather than university medicine, comparable with the list drawn out of the Shakespearean plays. The results most stressed in the article concern Shakespeare’s use of medical terminology already well known to his contemporary society (thus confuting the Oxfordian thesis about the impossibility for William Shakespeare the actor to master so many medical words and the playwright’s skill in transforming – rather than inventing – old popular terms. The article is accompanied by five tables that collect the results of the various lexicographical searches.
Schindler, Sebastian; Kissler, Johanna
Human brains spontaneously differentiate between various emotional and neutral stimuli, including written words whose emotional quality is symbolic. In the electroencephalogram (EEG), emotional-neutral processing differences are typically reflected in the early posterior negativity (EPN, 200-300 ms) and the late positive potential (LPP, 400-700 ms). These components are also enlarged by task-driven visual attention, supporting the assumption that emotional content naturally drives attention. Still, the spatio-temporal dynamics of interactions between emotional stimulus content and task-driven attention remain to be specified. Here, we examine this issue in visual word processing. Participants attended to negative, neutral, or positive nouns while high-density EEG was recorded. Emotional content and top-down attention both amplified the EPN component in parallel. On the LPP, by contrast, emotion and attention interacted: Explicit attention to emotional words led to a substantially larger amplitude increase than did explicit attention to neutral words. Source analysis revealed early parallel effects of emotion and attention in bilateral visual cortex and a later interaction of both in right visual cortex. Distinct effects of attention were found in inferior, middle and superior frontal, paracentral, and parietal areas, as well as in the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC). Results specify separate and shared mechanisms of emotion and attention at distinct processing stages. Hum Brain Mapp 37:3575-3587, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Powell, Sarah R; Fuchs, Lynn S
According to national mathematics standards, algebra instruction should begin at kindergarten and continue through elementary school. Most often, teachers address algebra in the elementary grades with problems related to solving equations or understanding functions. With 789 2(nd)- grade students, we administered (a) measures of calculations and word problems in the fall and (b) an assessment of pre-algebraic reasoning, with items that assessed solving equations and functions, in the spring. Based on the calculation and word-problem measures, we placed 148 students into 1 of 4 difficulty status categories: typically performing, calculation difficulty, word-problem difficulty, or difficulty with calculations and word problems. Analyses of variance were conducted on the 148 students; path analytic mediation analyses were conducted on the larger sample of 789 students. Across analyses, results corroborated the finding that word-problem difficulty is more strongly associated with difficulty with pre-algebraic reasoning. As an indicator of later algebra difficulty, word-problem difficulty may be a more useful predictor than calculation difficulty, and students with word-problem difficulty may require a different level of algebraic reasoning intervention than students with calculation difficulty.
Full Text Available Empirical studies have shown higher rates of tip-of-the-tongue states for proper nouns, in comparison to common nouns, in non-brain-damaged speakers (e.g., Valentine & Moore, 1995, and higher retrieval failure rates for proper nouns relative to common nouns in people with aphasia (e.g., Semenza, 2009. Some authors suggest the source of these differences lies in logical properties (e.g., Semenza, 2009. That is, common nouns refer to a category of beings or objects that share certain semantic properties, while proper nouns designate specific individual beings or objects with unique features. Other authors attribute the distinction in processing to a number of statistical properties that differ across common and proper nouns (Kay, Hanley, & Miles, 2001. The aims of the present study were: 1 to dissociate the effects of logical and statistical properties by using novel words with equal statistical properties; 2 to determine whether people with aphasia show disproportionate impairments in learning proper nouns relative to common nouns, compared to aged-matched subjects. Methods We tested young (n=16 and elderly (n=14 adult non-brain-damaged participants and people with aphasia (n=2. Items-to-be-learnt were given as representatives of an unknown species (n=10 in the common noun condition, or as individual creatures (n=10 in the proper noun condition. The experiment consisted of 5 sessions. Each session included a learning phase and a test phase with naming and word-picture verification tasks. Results and Discussion Preliminary analysis showed learning of both common and proper nouns for both younger (F(4=140.68, p<.01 and elderly (F(4=34.87, p<.01 non-brain-damaged participants, with learning being significantly better for the younger group (F(4=6.5, p<.01. Contrary to expectations, performance on proper nouns was better than that for common nouns for both young and elderly subjects (F(1=6.47, p=.02 and F(1=9.75, p<.01, respectively, possibly due to
Wilson, Jessica K.; Baran, Bengi; Pace-Schott, Edward F.; Richard B. Ivry; Rebecca M. C. Spencer
Sleep benefits memory across a range of tasks for young adults. However, remarkably little is known of the role of sleep on memory for healthy older adults. We used two tasks, one assaying motor skill learning and the other assaying non-motor/declarative learning, to examine off-line changes in performance in young (20–34 yrs), middle-aged (35–50 yrs), and older (51–70 yrs) adults without disordered sleep. During an initial session, conducted either in the morning or evening, participants lea...
Hu, Chieh-Fang; Schuele, C. Melanie
Although language experience is a key factor in successful foreign language (FL) learning, many FL learners fail to achieve performance levels that were predicted on the basis of their FL experience. This retrospective study investigated early cognitive and linguistic correlates of learning English as a foreign language (FL) in a group of…
Helmich, E.; Bolhuis, S.; Laan, R.F.J.M.; Koopmans, R.T.C.M.
CONTEXT: Early clinical experience is thought to contribute to the professional development of medical students, but little is known about the kind of learning processes that actually take place. Learning in practice is highly informal and may be difficult to direct by predefined learning outcomes.
Fonger, Nicole L.; Stephens, Ana; Blanton, Maria; Knuth, Eric
We detail a learning progressions approach to early algebra research and how existing work around learning progressions and trajectories in mathematics and science education has informed our development of a four-component theoretical framework consisting of: a curricular progression of learning goals across big algebraic ideas; an instructional…
Full Text Available The way in which children learn language can vary depending on their language environment. Previous work suggests that bilingual children may be more sensitive to pragmatic cues from a speaker when learning new words than monolingual children are. On the other hand, monolingual children may rely more heavily on object properties than bilingual children do. In this study we manipulate these two sources of information within the same paradigm, using eye gaze as a pragmatic cue and similarity along different dimensions as an object cue. In the crucial condition, object and pragmatic cues were inconsistent with each other. Our results showed that in this ambiguous condition monolingual children attend more to object property cues whereas bilingual children attend more to pragmatic cues. Control conditions showed that monolingual children were sensitive to eye gaze and bilingual children were sensitive to similarity by shape; it was only when the cues were inconsistent that children’s preference for one or the other cue was apparent. Our results suggest that children learn to weigh different cues depending on their relative informativeness in their environment
Eberhard-Moscicka, Aleksandra K; Jost, Lea B; Raith, Margit; Maurer, Urs
During reading acquisition children learn to recognize orthographic stimuli and link them to phonology and semantics. The present study investigated neurocognitive processes of learning to read after one year of schooling. We aimed to elucidate the cognitive processes underlying neural tuning for print that has been shown to play an important role for reading and dyslexia. A 128-channel EEG was recorded while 68 (Swiss-)German monolingual first grade children (mean age: 7.6) performed a one-back task with different types of letter and false-font strings. Print tuning was indexed by the N1 difference in the ERPs between German words and false-font strings, while the N1 lexicality effect was indexed by the difference between German words and pseudowords. In addition, we measured reading fluency, rapid automatized naming, phonological awareness, auditory memory span, and vocabulary. After one year of formal reading instruction N1 print tuning was clearly present at the group level, and could be detected at the individual level in almost 90% of the children. The N1 lexicality effect, however, could not be reliably found. On the cognitive level, next to word-reading fluency, vocabulary was also associated with N1 print tuning, but not measures reflecting phonological processing. These results demonstrate the presence of print tuning in the first year of reading acquisition and its development at the individual level. Moreover, individual differences in print tuning are not only related to word-reading fluency, but also to semantic knowledge, indicating that at early stages of learning to read the top-down modulation of print tuning is semantic rather than phonological in nature.
Endress, Ansgar D.; Mehler, Jacques
Word-segmentation, that is, the extraction of words from fluent speech, is one of the first problems language learners have to master. It is generally believed that statistical processes, in particular those tracking "transitional probabilities" (TPs), are important to word-segmentation. However, there is evidence that word forms are stored in…
Music listeners have difficulty correctly understanding and remembering song lyrics. However, results from the present study support the hypothesis that young adults can learn African-American English (AAE) vocabulary from listening to hip-hop music. Non-African-American participants first gave free-response definitions to AAE vocabulary items, after which they answered demographic questions as well as questions addressing their social networks, their musical preferences, and their knowledge of popular culture. Results from the survey show a positive association between the number of hip-hop artists listened to and AAE comprehension vocabulary scores. Additionally, participants were more likely to know an AAE vocabulary item if the hip-hop artists they listen to use the word in their song lyrics. Together, these results suggest that young adults can acquire vocabulary through exposure to hip-hop music, a finding relevant for research on vocabulary acquisition, the construction of adolescent and adult identities, and the adoption of lexical innovations.
Zoladz, Phillip R; Clark, Brianne; Warnecke, Ashlee; Smith, Lindsay; Tabar, Jennifer; Talbot, Jeffery N
Stress exerts a profound, yet complex, influence on learning and memory and can enhance, impair or have no effect on these processes. Here, we have examined how the administration of stress at different times before learning affects long-term (24-hr) memory for neutral and emotional information. Participants submerged their dominant hand into a bath of ice cold water (Stress) or into a bath of warm water (No stress) for 3 min. Either immediately (Exp. 1) or 30 min (Exp. 2) after the water bath manipulation, participants were presented with a list of 30 words varying in emotional valence. The next day, participants' memory for the word list was assessed via free recall and recognition tests. In both experiments, stressed participants exhibited greater blood pressure, salivary cortisol levels, and subjective pain and stress ratings than non-stressed participants in response to the water bath manipulation. Stress applied immediately prior to learning (Exp. 1) enhanced the recognition of positive words, while stress applied 30 min prior to learning (Exp. 2) impaired free recall of negative words. Participants' recognition of positive words in Experiment 1 was positively associated with their heart rate responses to the water bath manipulation, while participants' free recall of negative words in Experiment 2 was negatively associated with their blood pressure and cortisol responses to the water bath manipulation. These findings indicate that the differential effects of pre-learning stress on long-term memory may depend on the temporal proximity of the stressor to the learning experience and the emotional nature of the to-be-learned information.
Irby, Beverly, Ed.; Brown, Genevieve H., Ed.
The Research on Women and Education SIG of the American Educational Research Association presents the third book in its series, Gender and Early Learning Environments. Finding after the publication of Gender and Schooling in the Early Years, the second book in the series, that there was and is a paucity of published literature on early childhood…
学习和掌握词汇是学习外语的最基础的部分。韩国语词汇按结构和来源可以分四种：固有词,汉字词,外来词,混合词。其中汉字词占总词汇量的60%以上。可见,汉字词在整个韩国语学习尤其是在韩国语词汇学习中起到举足轻重的作用。可以说,如果要攻破韩国语词汇关,首先要攻破汉字词。%Learning and mastering the vocabulary is the most basic part of learning a foreign language.Korean words can be divided into four categories： structure and sources of inherent word,Chinese character words,foreign words,mixed words.More than 60% of the total vocabulary of Chinese Words.Be seen,the Chinese character word in the entire Korean language learning in particular play a decisive role in the Korean vocabulary learning.It can be said that if you want to break the Korean vocabulary off,first to break the Chinese word.
Marcotte, Karine; Ansaldo, Ana Inés
This study aimed at investigating the neural basis of word learning as a function of age and word type. Ten young and ten elderly French-speaking participants were trained by means of a computerized Spanish word program. Both age groups reached a similar naming accuracy, but the elderly required significantly more time. Despite equivalent performance, distinct neural networks characterized the ceiling. While the young cohort showed subcortical activations, the elderly recruited the left inferior frontal gyrus, the left lingual gyrus and the precuneus. The learning trajectory of the elderly, the neuroimaging findings together with their performance on the Stroop suggest that the young adults relied on control processing areas whereas the elderly relied on episodic memory circuits, which may reflect resorting to better preserved cognitive resources. Finally, the recruitment of visual processing areas by the elderly may reflect the impact of the language training method used.
Full Text Available This study is an early pace in the research development of entrepreneurship learning model for early childhood. This study aims to explore how learning entrepreneurship that has been done in the early childhood; to know whether parents, teachers, and principals support the entrepreneurship learning; and what kind of values of entrepreneurship can be developed for early childhood. The results of this research are useful to create early childhood entrepreneurial learning design. The research conducts in the form of interviews, observation, and documentation. The result shows that the school which has been developing entrepreneurship has no clear guidance of learning to develop the spirit of entrepreneurship; all teachers and principals in the research agree that entrepreneurship learning developed from an early age. However, there are 90.79% of parents agreed that from an early age has begun to develop the spirit of entrepreneurship and 9.21% said they did not agree; and the values of entrepreneurship that are able to be developed since they are in early age are self-confidence, honesty, independence, responsibility, creative, never give up/hard work, caring for the environment, teamwork, discipline, and respect.
Storkel, Holly L.; Bontempo, Daniel E.; Aschenbrenner, Andrew J.; Maekawa, Junko; Lee, Su-Yeon
Purpose: Phonotactic probability or neighborhood density has predominately been defined through the use of gross distinctions (i.e., low vs. high). In the current studies, the authors examined the influence of finer changes in probability (Experiment 1) and density (Experiment 2) on word learning. Method: The authors examined the full range of…
Mattock, Karen; Polka, Linda; Rvachew, Susan; Krehm, Madelaine
English, French, and bilingual English-French 17-month-old infants were compared for their performance on a word learning task using the Switch task. Object names presented a /b/ vs. /g/ contrast that is phonemic in both English and French, and auditory strings comprised English and French pronunciations by an adult bilingual. Infants were…
Chow, Bonnie Wing-Yin
Paired associated learning (PAL) is a critical skill for making arbitrary associations among print, pronunciation and meaning in reading development. Extended from past research of PAL, this study investigated whether PAL operated flexibly to linguistic demands of languages, by examining word reading abilities in Chinese-English bilingual…
Howard, Sue; DaDeppo, Lisa M. W.; De La Paz, Susan
Difficulties with spelling can impact students' reading acquisition and writing, having a critical impact on overall literacy development. Students with learning disabilities (LD) often struggle with spelling. We describe a case study with three elementary-aged students with LD using a mnemonic approach to spelling sight words. Our approach,…
Knight, Melissa G.; Ross, Denise E.; Taylor, Ronald L.; Ramasamy, Rangasamy
This study compared efficacy and efficiency of constant time delay and interspersal of known items to teach sight words to four students with mild mental retardation and learning disabilities. Results support effectiveness of constant time delay and suggest that interspersal of known items was more effective with students with learning…
Leacox, Lindsey; Jackson, Carla Wood
This study examined preschool and kindergarten English language learners (ELLs) attending a migrant summer programme and their vocabulary word learning during both adult-read and technology-enhanced repeated readings. In a within-subject design, 24 ELLs (four to six years old) engaged in repeated readings in a control and a treatment condition. In…
Horst, Jessica S; Parsons, Kelly L; Bryan, Natasha M
Although shared storybook reading is a common activity believed to improve the language skills of preschool children, how children learn new vocabulary from such experiences has been largely neglected in the literature. The current study systematically explores the effects of repeatedly reading the same storybooks on both young children's fast and slow mapping abilities. Specially created storybooks were read to 3-year-old children three times during the course of 1 week. Each of the nine storybooks contained two novel name-object pairs. At each session, children either heard three different stories with the same two novel name-object pairs or the same story three times. Importantly, all children heard each novel name the same number of times. Both immediate recall and retention were tested with a four-alternative forced-choice task with pictures of the novel objects. Children who heard the same stories repeatedly were very accurate on both the immediate recall and retention tasks. In contrast, children who heard different stories were only accurate on immediate recall during the last two sessions and failed to learn any of the new words. Overall, then, we found a dramatic increase in children's ability to both recall and retain novel name-object associations encountered during shared storybook reading when they heard the same stories multiple times in succession. Results are discussed in terms of contextual cueing effects observed in other cognitive domains.
Epidemiology is founded on central concepts and principles, essential for conducting, reporting and critically assessing epidemiological studies. Definitions of the many concepts used in the field can be found in textbooks and via the Dictionary of Epidemiology. However, central epidemiological concepts are labelled and used in multiple ways, leading to potential misunderstanding when communicating in different fora. The aim here is to describe collaborative concept mapping, and illustrate how it can be used in teaching and learning epidemiology. Concept mapping is a cognitive technique that is widely used in the education of medical and allied health professions as a tool for critical thinking, and to assimilate new knowledge, but it is still under-utilised in epidemiology. A specific concept map is defined by the aim and question in focus; it is thus framed by a context. The concept map is constructed using a set of concepts (nodes) that are linked with arrows or lines (links). Words and phrases (connective terms) are used to explain relationships between the concepts linked. Different domains can be interconnected by linking concepts in different areas (cross-links). The underlying structure of knowledge is often complex, and consequently concept maps can be constructed using different topological features. Here we provide an illustrative example of concept mapping, based on a set of 'basic' concepts introduced in a doctoral course in epidemiology. In summary, concept mapping is a compelling, active learning tool, which can promote shared deeper knowledge of concepts and their complex interconnections, thereby facilitating a better understanding of epidemiological research.
Plante, Elena; Patterson, Dianne; Dailey, Natalie S; Kyle, R Almyrde; Fridriksson, Julius
Those who are initially exposed to an unfamiliar language have difficulty separating running speech into individual words, but over time will recognize both words and the grammatical structure of the language. Behavioral studies have used artificial languages to demonstrate that humans are sensitive to distributional information in language input, and can use this information to discover the structure of that language. This is done without direct instruction and learning occurs over the course of minutes rather than days or months. Moreover, learners may attend to different aspects of the language input as their own learning progresses. Here, we examine processing associated with the early stages of exposure to a natural language, using fMRI. Listeners were exposed to an unfamiliar language (Icelandic) while undergoing four consecutive fMRI scans. The Icelandic stimuli were constrained in ways known to produce rapid learning of aspects of language structure. After approximately 4 min of exposure to the Icelandic stimuli, participants began to differentiate between correct and incorrect sentences at above chance levels, with significant improvement between the first and last scan. An independent component analysis of the imaging data revealed four task-related components, two of which were associated with behavioral performance early in the experiment, and two with performance later in the experiment. This outcome suggests dynamic changes occur in the recruitment of neural resources even within the initial period of exposure to an unfamiliar natural language.
Van der Haegen, Lise; Brysbaert, Marc; Davis, Colin J.
It has recently been shown that interhemispheric communication is needed for the processing of foveally presented words. In this study, we examine whether the integration of information happens at an early stage, before word recognition proper starts, or whether the integration is part of the recognition process itself. Two lexical decision…
Crawford, Shauna; Elliott, Robert T.
Six primary school-aged braille students were taught to name 4 to 10 braille letters as phonemes and another 4 to 10 braille letters as graphemes (Study 1). They were then taught to name 10 braille words as onset-rimes and another 10 braille words as whole words (Study 2). Instruction in phonemes and onset rimes resulted in fewer trials and a…
This study examined the abilities of young English as a foreign language (EFL) learners to identify quickly new words from a nonostensive, indirect teaching context (known as fast- mapping) and their ability to commit the words to memory. Seventy-five fourth-grade EFL learners heard novel words embedded in sentences. They were then tested for…
Storkel, Holly L.
The influence of phonological (i.e. individual sounds), lexical (i.e. whole-word forms) and semantic (i.e. meaning) characteristics on the words known by infants age 1;4 to 2;6 was examined, using an existing database (Dale & Fenson, 1996). For each noun, word frequency, two phonological (i.e. positional segment average, biphone average), two…
This paper focuses on the development of Prosodic Word shapes in Catalan, a language which differs from both Spanish and English in the distribution of PW structures. Of particular interest are the truncations of initial unstressed syllables, and how these develop over time. Developmental qualitative and quantitative data from seven…
Jesse, Alexandra; Poellmann, Katja; Kong, Ying-Yee
Purpose: We used an eye-tracking technique to investigate whether English listeners use suprasegmental information about lexical stress to speed up the recognition of spoken words in English. Method: In a visual world paradigm, 24 young English listeners followed spoken instructions to choose 1 of 4 printed referents on a computer screen (e.g.,…
Rispens, J.E.; McBride-Chang, C.; Reitsma, P.
This study investigated the relations of three aspects of morphological awareness to word recognition and spelling skills of Dutch speaking children. Tasks of inflectional and derivational morphology and lexical compounding, as well as measures of phonological awareness, vocabulary and mathematics w
Angelelli, Paola; Marinelli, Chiara Valeria; Putzolu, Anna; Notarnicola, Alessandra; Iaia, Marika; Burani, Cristina
We examined how whole-word lexical information and knowledge of distributional properties of orthography interact in children's spelling. High- versus low-frequency words, which included inconsistently spelled segments occurring more or less frequently in the orthography, were used in two experiments: (a) word spelling; (b) lexical priming of pseudoword spelling. Participants were 1st-, 2nd-, and 4th-grade Italian children. Word spelling showed sensitivity to the distributional properties of orthography in all children: accuracy in spelling uncommon transcription segments emerged progressively as a function of word frequency and schooling. Lexical priming effects emerged as a function of age. When related primes contained an uncommon segment, 2nd- and 4th-graders preferred uncommon segments than common ones in spelling target pseudowords, thus inverting the response trend found in the control condition. A smaller but significant effect was present in 1st- graders, who, unlike 2nd- and 4th-graders, still preferred common segments, only slightly increasing the use of uncommon ones. A larger priming effect emerged for high-frequency primes than low-frequency ones. Results indicate that children learning to spell in a transparent orthography are sensitive to the distributional properties of the orthography. However, whole-word lexical representations are also used, with larger effects in more skilled pupils.
Remmik, Marvi; Karm, Mari; Haamer, Anu; Lepp, Liina
Communities of practice are generally known as places of engagement, learning and development. The current research aims to develop understanding of Estonian early-career university teachers' learning and developing possibilities as teachers in the community of practice (in the university). This paper is based on narrative interviews of 25…
"Early Learning and Development" provides a unique synthesis of cultural-historical theory from Vygotsky, Elkonin and Leontiev in the 20th century to the ground-breaking research of scholars such as Siraj-Blatchford, Kratsova and Hedegaard today. It demonstrates how development and learning are culturally embedded and institutionally defined, and…
Anthony, Glenda; McLachlan, Claire; Lim Fock Poh, Rachel
Narratives that capture children's learning as they go about their day-to-day activities are promoted as a powerful assessment tool within early childhood settings. However, in the New Zealand context, there is increasing concern that learning stories--the preferred form of narrative assessment--currently downplay domain knowledge. In this paper,…
Full Text Available Abstract Background Word sense disambiguation (WSD is critical in the biomedical domain for improving the precision of natural language processing (NLP, text mining, and information retrieval systems because ambiguous words negatively impact accurate access to literature containing biomolecular entities, such as genes, proteins, cells, diseases, and other important entities. Automated techniques have been developed that address the WSD problem for a number of text processing situations, but the problem is still a challenging one. Supervised WSD machine learning (ML methods have been applied in the biomedical domain and have shown promising results, but the results typically incorporate a number of confounding factors, and it is problematic to truly understand the effectiveness and generalizability of the methods because these factors interact with each other and affect the final results. Thus, there is a need to explicitly address the factors and to systematically quantify their effects on performance. Results Experiments were designed to measure the effect of "sample size" (i.e. size of the datasets, "sense distribution" (i.e. the distribution of the different meanings of the ambiguous word and "degree of difficulty" (i.e. the measure of the distances between the meanings of the senses of an ambiguous word on the performance of WSD classifiers. Support Vector Machine (SVM classifiers were applied to an automatically generated data set containing four ambiguous biomedical abbreviations: BPD, BSA, PCA, and RSV, which were chosen because of varying degrees of differences in their respective senses. Results showed that: 1 increasing the sample size generally reduced the error rate, but this was limited mainly to well-separated senses (i.e. cases where the distances between the senses were large; in difficult cases an unusually large increase in sample size was needed to increase performance slightly, which was impractical, 2 the sense distribution
This book focuses upon effective pedagogical leadership and practice in the leadership of learning within early years settings and children's centres. The book and accompanying DVD, containing real-life examples of early years leaders, provides a framework for reflective thinking and learning for those leading practice and working with…
Ricks, Samantha L.; Alt, Mary
Purpose: The purpose of this tutorial is to provide clinicians with a theoretically motivated and evidence-based approach to teaching adjectives to children who struggle with word learning. Method: Given that there are almost no treatment studies to guide this topic, we have synthesized findings from experimental and theoretical literature to come…
Powell, Sarah R.; Fuchs, Lynn S.
According to national mathematics standards, algebra instruction should begin at kindergarten and continue through elementary school. Most often, teachers address algebra in the elementary grades with problems related to solving equations or understanding functions. With 789 2nd- grade students, we administered (a) measures of calculations and word problems in the fall and (b) an assessment of pre-algebraic reasoning, with items that assessed solving equations and functions, in the spring. Ba...
Hotermans, Christophe; Peigneux, Philippe; de Noordhout, Alain Maertens; Moonen, Gustave; Maquet, Pierre
Motor skill learning is a dynamic process that continues covertly after training has ended and eventually leads to delayed increments in performance. Current theories suggest that this off-line improvement takes time and appears only after several hours. Here we show an early transient and short-lived boost in performance, emerging as early as…
Full Text Available Music listeners have difficulty correctly understanding and remembering song lyrics. However, results from the present study support the hypothesis that young adults can learn African-American English (AAE vocabulary from listening to hip-hop music. Non-African-American participants first gave free-response definitions to AAE vocabulary items, after which they answered demographic questions as well as questions addressing their social networks, their musical preferences, and their knowledge of popular culture. Results from the survey show a positive association between the number of hip-hop artists listened to and AAE comprehension vocabulary scores. Additionally, participants were more likely to know an AAE vocabulary item if the hip-hop artists they listen to use the word in their song lyrics. Together, these results suggest that young adults can acquire vocabulary through exposure to hip-hop music, a finding relevant for research on vocabulary acquisition, the construction of adolescent and adult identities, and the adoption of lexical innovations.
Imai, Mutsumi; Gentner, Dedre
Investigated whether learning the distinction between substance names and object names is conceptually or linguistically driven, by repeating Soja et al.'s study with English- and Japanese-speaking children. (Japanese does not make the count-mass grammatical distinction proposed to contribute to learning the distinction.) Found evidence for…
Sherman, Judy; Torres-Crespo, Marisel N.
Capitalizing on preschoolers' inherent enthusiasm and capacity for learning, the authors developed and implemented a dual-language program to enable young children to experience diversity and multiculturalism by learning two new languages: Spanish and American Sign Language. Details of the curriculum, findings, and strategies are shared.
Full Text Available Although number words are common in everyday speech, learning their meanings is an arduous, drawn-out process for most children, and the source of this delay has long been the subject of inquiry. Children begin by identifying the few small numerosities that can be named without counting, and this has prompted further debate over whether there is a specific, capacity-limited system for representing these small sets, or whether smaller and larger sets are both represented by the same system. Here we present a formal, computational analysis of number learning that offers a possible solution to both puzzles. This analysis indicates that once the environment and the representational demands of the task of learning to identify sets are taken into consideration, a continuous system for learning, representing and discriminating set-sizes can give rise to effective discontinuities in processing. At the same time, our simulations illustrate how typical prenominal linguistic constructions ("there are three balls" structure information in a way that is largely unhelpful for discrimination learning, while suggesting that postnominal constructions ("balls, there are three" will facilitate such learning. A training-experiment with three-year olds confirms these predictions, demonstrating that rapid, significant gains in numerical understanding and competence are possible given appropriately structured postnominal input. Our simulations and results reveal how discrimination learning tunes children's systems for representing small sets, and how its capacity-limits result naturally out of a mixture of the learning environment and the increasingly complex task of discriminating and representing ever-larger number sets. They also explain why children benefit so little from the training that parents and educators usually provide. Given the efficacy of our intervention, the ease with which it can be implemented, and the large body of research showing how early
Graf Estes, Katharine; Lew-Williams, Casey
To learn from their environments, infants must detect structure behind pervasive variation. This presents substantial and largely untested learning challenges in early language acquisition. The current experiments address whether infants can use statistical learning mechanisms to segment words when the speech signal contains acoustic variation…
Bemd, van den Eva; Mos, M.B.J.; Alishahi, A.; Shayan, Shakila
This paper examines the semantic consequences of the presence and absence of the verbal particle in Hungarian sentences containing a verb of creation. Since these verbs are Definiteness-Effect verbs, the aspectual interpretation does not depend merely on the verbal particle’s position – or even pres
Nachtigäller, Kerstin; Rohlfing, Katharina J; McGregor, Karla K
We trained forty German-speaking children aged 1;8-2;0 in their comprehension of UNTER [UNDER]. The target word was presented within semantically organized input in the form of a 'narrative' to the experimental group and within 'unconnected speech' to the control group. We tested children's learning by asking them to perform an UNDER-relation before, immediately after, and again one day after the training using familiarized and unfamiliarized materials. Compared to controls, the experimental group learned better and retained more. Children with advanced expressive lexicons in particular were aided in generalizing to unfamiliarized materials by the narrative presentation. This study extends our understanding of how narrations scaffold young children's enrichment of nascent word knowledge.
张积家; 王娟; 刘鸣
level by 7-point scale. Each kind of materials had 16 stimuli including animal, plant,human organs, natural objects and tools. Twenty-six university students participated in this study and they were required to learn and get acquainted with the materials before the experiment. Semantic consistence evaluation task was performed in Experiment 1b. Twenty-five university students participated in this study. Naming and categorizing tasks were performed in Experiment 2. Two-factor within subject design was used: 5 (symbolic types: English words, Chinese words, inscription on oracle bones, Dongba pictograph and pictures) × 2 (tasks:naming, categorizing). During naming task, participants were asked to read the words loudly or name the symbols presented on the screen as quickly and correctly as possible. Naming time was collected by the computer and naming correct percent was recorded by the examiner. During categorizing task, participants were asked to decide whether the item a word or symbol representing belong to a certain category by pressing "F" or "J" on the keyboards. Stimulus-naming were presented in five blocks of 240 trials. Stimulus-categorizing were presented in five blocks of 480 trials. Twenty-four university students participated in this study.The results were as following: (1) Different symbols displayed differently in perceptive similarity judgment task and semantic consistence judgment task. Pictures, inscription on oracle bones, Dongba pictograph and Chinese characters had high similarity in perception, English and other symbols had low similarity; in semantic consistence judgment task, symbols combined with English and Chinese were processed fast. (2) Different kinds of materials were asymmetrical in naming and categorizing: English-reading and Chinese-reading were faster than English -categorizing and Chinese-categorizing, categorizing of inscription on oracle bones, Dongba pictograph-categorizing and picture-categorizing were faster than respective naming
As language and culture are closely related to each other, learning a foreign language means more than mastering the pronunciation, grammar and vocabulary; it is actually inseparable from learning its culture. The changes in word and word usage reveal changes in the development of society as well as in people＇s values and ideas. To learn and use words properly involves cultural elements including associative or emotional connotations of a word. The successful learning of a foreign language and smooth cross- culture communication are almost impossible without a thorough understanding of the culture concerned.%语言和文化密不可分，学一门语言不仅要掌握其语音、语法和词汇，更要学习该语言的文化。词汇是构成语言最基本的要素。词汇的变迁最能反映出社会和价值观的变化，因而词汇蕴涵的文化差异不容忽视。在词汇层次上进行跨文化交际研究主要涉及富含文化内涵的词语、词语的感情色彩及习惯用语。只有在文化中把握词语，才能真正学好外语，顺利地进行跨文化交际。
Purpose: To determine the rate of word learning for children with hearing loss (HL) in quiet and in noise compared to normal-hearing (NH) peers. The effects of digital noise reduction (DNR) were examined for children with HL. Method: Forty-one children with NH and 26 children with HL were grouped by age (8-9 years and 11-12 years). The children…
Four accidents involving the approach to criticality occurred during the period July, 1945, through May, 1996. These have been described in the format of the OPERATING EXPERIENCE WEEKLY SUMMARY which is distributed by the Office of Nuclear and Facility Safety. Although the lessons learned have been incorporated in standards, codes, and formal procedures during the last fifty years, this is their first presentation in this format. It is particularly appropriate that they be presented in the forum of the Nuclear Criticality Technology Safety Project Workshop closest to the fiftieth anniversary of the last of the four accidents, and that which was most instrumental in demonstrating the need to incorporate lessons learned.
Culbertson, Jennifer; Smolensky, Paul
In this article, we develop a hierarchical Bayesian model of learning in a general type of artificial language-learning experiment in which learners are exposed to a mixture of grammars representing the variation present in real learners' input, particularly at times of language change. The modeling goal is to formalize and quantify hypothesized learning biases. The test case is an experiment (Culbertson, Smolensky, & Legendre, 2012) targeting the learning of word-order patterns in the nominal domain. The model identifies internal biases of the experimental participants, providing evidence that learners impose (possibly arbitrary) properties on the grammars they learn, potentially resulting in the cross-linguistic regularities known as typological universals. Learners exposed to mixtures of artificial grammars tended to shift those mixtures in certain ways rather than others; the model reveals how learners' inferences are systematically affected by specific prior biases. These biases are in line with a typological generalization-Greenberg's Universal 18-which bans a particular word-order pattern relating nouns, adjectives, and numerals.
Sohsah, Gihad N.; Ünal, Muhammed Esad; Güzey, Onur
Educational applications for language teaching can utilize the language levels of words to target proficiency levels of students. This paper and the accompanying data provide a methodology for making educational standard-aligned language-level predictions for all English words. The methodology involves expert opinions on language levels and…
Pasquarella, Adrian; Deacon, Helene; Chen, Becky X.; Commissaire, Eva; Au-Yeung, Karen
This study examined the within-language and cross-language relationships between orthographic processing and word reading in French and English across Grades 1 and 2. Seventy-three children in French Immersion completed measures of orthographic processing and word reading in French and English in Grade 1 and Grade 2, as well as a series of control…
Vadasy, Patricia F.; Sanders, Elizabeth A.
In this exploratory study we examine the value of exposure to the spelling and pronunciation of word forms when introducing the meanings of new and difficult vocabulary words. Kindergarten English learners were randomly assigned to one of two types of storybook reading delivered by tutors. Students in both treatments listened to short stories…
Wolsey, Thomas DeVere; Smetana, Linda; Grisham, Dana L.
Students who can use a term conversantly in academic environments know how to use it precisely in their writing and in their interactions with others; they can be said to deeply know, not just the word term in alphabetic or spoken forms, but the connections to ideas the term embodies. When students are intrigued by words and ideas, they want to…
Grosse, Susan J.
Bathtubs and swimming pools provide the ideal learning environment for people with special needs. For young preschool children, the activities that take place through water can help them develop physical fitness, facilitate motor development, reinforce perceptual-motor ability, encourage social development, and enhance self-esteem and confidence.…
CDC recognized the impact of developmental disabilities and invested in a campaign to help parents measure their children's progress by monitoring how they play, learn, speak, and act. . Created: 9/22/2008 by National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities, Division of Human Development and Disability, Child Development Studies Team. Date Released: 9/23/2008.
Jiang, Xuan; Perkins, Kyle
Bruner's constructs of learning, specifically the structure of learning, spiral curriculum, and discovery learning, in conjunction with the Cognitive Load Theory, are used to evaluate the Picture Word Inductive Model (PWIM), an inquiry-oriented inductive language arts strategy designed to teach K-6 children phonics and spelling. The PWIM reflects…
Eve Vivienne Clark
Full Text Available When young children answer questions, they do so more slowly than adults and appear to have difficulty finding the appropriate words. Because children leave gaps before they respond, it is possible that they could answer faster with gestures than with words. In this case study of one child from age 1;4 to 3;5, we compare gestural and verbal responses to adult Where and Which questions, which can be answered with gestures and/or words. After extracting all adult Where and Which questions and child answers from longitudinal videotaped sessions, we examined the timing from the end of each question to the start of the response, and compared the timing for gestures and words. Child responses could take the form of a gesture or word(s; the latter could be words repeated from the adult question or new words retrieved by the child. Or responses could be complex: a gesture + word repeat, gesture + new word, or word repeat + new word.Gestures were the fastest overall, followed successively by word-repeats, then new-word responses. This ordering, with gestures ahead of words, suggests that the child knows what to answer but needs more time to retrieve any relevant words. In short, word retrieval and articulation appear to be bottlenecks in the timing of responses: both add to the planning required in answering a question.
Erbey, Rachel; McLaughlin, T. F.; Derby, K. Mark; Everson, Mary
The purpose of this study was to measure the effects of reading racetrack and flashcards when teaching phonics, sight words, and addition facts. The participants for the sight word and phonics portion of this study were two seven-year-old boys in the second grade. Both participants were diagnosed with a learning disability. The third participant…
Benfield, Jamie Ledsinger
Anson County School District wished to determine the relationship between Fast ForWord Scientific Learning data and North Carolina End of Grade reading scores at Anson Middle School in Anson County, North Carolina. The specific research questions that guided this study include: 1. How does the literacy intervention, Fast ForWord, affect EOG growth…
Bakker, I.; Takashima, A.; Hell, J.G. van; Janzen, G.; McQueen, J.M.
Novel words can be recalled immediately and after little exposure, but require a post-learning consolidation period to show word-like behaviour such as lexical competition. This pattern is thought to reflect a qualitative shift from episodic to lexical representations. However, several studies have
Schwabe, Lars; Bohringer, Andreas; Chatterjee, Monischa; Schachinger, Hartmut
Stress can have enhancing or impairing effects on memory. Here, we addressed the effect of pre-learning stress on subsequent memory and asked whether neutral and emotionally valent information are differentially affected by specific stress components, autonomic arousal and stress-induced cortisol. Ninety-six healthy men and women underwent either a stressor (modified cold pressor test) or a control warm water exposure. During stress, participants showed comparable autonomic arousal (heart rate, blood pressure), while 60 percent showed an increase of cortisol (responders vs. 40 percent non-responders). Ten minutes after the cold pressor test neutral, positive and negative words were presented. Free recall was tested 1 and 24h later. Overall, positive and negative words were better recalled than neutral words. Stress enhanced the recall of neutral words independently of cortisol response. In contrast, the free recall of negative words was enhanced in cortisol responders in the 1-h but not 24-h test which might suggest different effects of cortisol on consolidation and reconsolidation processes. Recall for positive words was unaffected by stress-induced cortisol. To summarize, (i) pre-learning stress can enhance memory for neutral words independently of cortisol and (ii) stress effects on memory for negative words appear to rely on stress-induced cortisol elevations, the absence of this effect for positive words might be at least partly due to differences in arousal evoked by positive vs. negative words.
Full Text Available The initial stages of language learning involve a critical interaction between infants’ environmental experience and their developing brains. The past several decades of research have produced important behavioral evidence of the many factors influencing this process, both on the part of the child and on the part of the environment that the child is in. The application of neurophysiological techniques to the study of early development has been augmenting these findings at a rapid pace. While the result is an accrual of data bridging the gap between brain and behavior, much work remains to make the link between behavioral evidence of infants' emerging sensitivities and neurophysiological evidence of changes in how their brains process information. Here we review the background behavioral data on how salience and familiarity in the auditory signal shape initial language learning. We follow this with a summary of more recent evidence of changes in infants’ brain activity in response to specific aspects of speech. Our goal is to examine language learning through the lens of brain/environment interactions, ultimately focusing on changes in cortical processing of speech across the first year of life. We will ground our examination of recent brain data in the two auditory features initially outlined: salience and familiarity. Our own and others' findings on the influence of these two features reveal that they are key parameters in infants’ emerging recognition of structure in the speech signal. Importantly, the evidence we review makes the critical link between behavioral and brain data. We discuss the importance of future work that makes this bridge as a means of moving the study of language development solidly into the domain of brain science.
In 1803, the most prominent Japanese astronomer of his time, Takahashi Yoshitoki, received a newly imported Dutch translation of J. J. Lalande's 'Astronomie'. He could not read Dutch, yet he dedicated almost a year to a close examination of this massive work, taking notes and contemplating his own astronomical practices. How did he read a book he could not read? Following the clues Yoshitoki left in his notes, we discover that he found meanings not only in words, but also in what are often taken for granted or considered to be auxiliary tools for data manipulation, such as symbols, units, tables, and diagrams. His rendering of these non-verbal textual elements into a familiar format was crucial for Yoshitoki's reading, and constituted the initial step in the process of integrating Lalande's astronomy into Japanese astronomical practices, and the subsequent translation of the text into Japanese.
Eric van Sonderen
Full Text Available OBJECTIVE: We examined the effectiveness of reverse worded items as a means of reducing or preventing response bias. We first distinguished between several types of response bias that are often confused in literature. We next developed arguments why reversing items is probably never a good way to address response bias. We proposed testing whether reverse wording affects response bias with item-level data from the Multidimensional Fatigue Inventory (MFI-20, an instrument that contains reversed worded items. METHODS: With data from 700 respondents, we compared scores on items that were similar with respect either to content or to direction of wording. Psychometric properties of sets of these items worded in the same direction were compared with sets consisting of both straightforward and reversed worded items. RESULTS: We did not find evidence that ten reverse-worded items prevented response bias. Instead, the data suggest scores were contaminated by respondent inattention and confusion. CONCLUSIONS: Using twenty items, balanced for scoring direction, to assess fatigue did not prevent respondents from inattentive or acquiescent answering. Rather, fewer mistakes are made with a 10-item instrument with items posed in the same direction. Such a format is preferable for both epidemiological and clinical studies.
Five years ago, as a way to ensure that students not only learn to decode but also understand what they decode, the Core Knowledge Foundation, the nonprofit that publishes the Core Knowledge curriculum, created a language arts program for kindergarten through second grade. The program includes two 60-minute strands: (1) a "Skills Strand," in which…
Full Text Available Word recognition is a major component of fluent reading and involves an interaction of language structure, orthography, and metalinguistic skills. This study examined reading strategies in isiXhosa and the transfer of these strategies to an additional language, English. IsiXhosa was chosen because of its agglutinative structure and conjunctive orthography. Data was collected at two schools which differed with regards to their language of learning and teaching (LoLT in the first three years of schooling: isiXhosa and English respectively. Participants completed a wordand pseudo-word reading aloud task in each of two languages which hypothetically impose different cognitive demands. Skills transfer occurs to a limited extent when the language of first literacy uses a transparent orthography, but is less predictable when the language of first literacy uses an opaque orthography. We show that although there is transfer of word recognition strategies from transparent to deep orthographies, felicitous transfer is limited to sublexical strategies; infelicitous transfer also occurs when lexical strategies are transferred in problematic ways. The results support the contention that reading strategies and cognitive skills are fine tuned to particular languages. This study emphasises that literacies in different languages present readers with different structural puzzles which require language-particular suites of cognitive reading skills. Keywords: Foundation phase education; multilingual education; reading; word recognition; automaticity; isiXhosa reading
Rumelhart, D.E.; Skokowski, P.G.; Martin, B.O.
In this project we have developed a language model based on Artificial Neural Networks (ANNs) for use in conjunction with automatic textual search or speech recognition systems. The model can be trained on large corpora of text to produce probability estimates that would improve the ability of systems to identify words in a sentence given partial contextual information. The model uses a gradient-descent learning procedure to develop a metric of similarity among terms in a corpus, based on context. Using lexical categories based on this metric, a network can then be trained to do serial word probability estimation. Such a metric can also be used to improve the performance of topic-based search by allowing retrieval of information that is related to desired topics even if no obvious set of key words unites all the retrieved items.
Vitevitch, Michael S; Stamer, Melissa K; Kieweg, Douglas
A number of resources provide psycholinguistic researchers with information about the words that the typical child or adult knows in a variety of languages. What is currently not available is a resource that provides information about the words that a typical adult learning a foreign language knows. We created such a resource for Spanish: The Beginning Spanish Lexicon. The present report describes the words contained in this web-accessible resource, and the information about those words provided by the interface. This information is freely accessible at: http://www.people.ku.edu/~mvitevit/BegSpanLex.html.
Full Text Available The effect of explicit instruction of clustering new thematic vocabulary items into two different categories through hyperlinks of PowerPoint was examined on vocabulary learning of 75 Iranian intermediate EFL learners. The sample was randomly assigned to three groups. Experimental group 1 received the meaning of new words in their First Language (L1 translation via PowerPoint, while experimental group 2 received the meanings in English definition in the same way; control group learned the meanings through a traditional method of instruction without employing any specific strategy. To measure the participants’ vocabulary learning, a pretest and a posttest were administered to all groups. The result of t-test indicated that such explicit strategy instruction enhanced vocabulary learning of the experimental groups. According to the results of One-Way ANOVA, although there was no significant difference between the experimental groups, a significant difference was observed between the experimental groups and the control group in vocabulary learning.Keywords: CALL (Computer-Assisted Language Learning; hyperlinks; explicit strategy instruction; L1 translation, English definition; vocabulary learning
Stella, Massimo; Brede, Markus
Network models of language have provided a way of linking cognitive processes to the structure and connectivity of language. However, one shortcoming of current approaches is focusing on only one type of linguistic relationship at a time, missing the complex multi-relational nature of language. In this work, we overcome this limitation by modelling the mental lexicon of English-speaking toddlers as a multiplex lexical network, i.e. a multi-layered network where N=529 words/nodes are connected according to four types of relationships: (i) free associations, (ii) feature sharing, (iii) co-occurrence, and (iv) phonological similarity. We provide analysis of the topology of the resulting multiplex and then proceed to evaluate single layers as well as the full multiplex structure on their ability to predict empirically observed age of acquisition data of English speaking toddlers. We find that the emerging multiplex network topology is an important proxy of the cognitive processes of acquisition, capable of captur...
Deanda, Stephanie; Arias-Trejo, Natalia; Poulin-Dubois, Diane; Zesiger, Pascal; Friend, Margaret
Although the extant literature provides robust evidence of the influence of language exposure and socioeconomic status (SES) on language acquisition, it is unknown how sensitive the early receptive vocabulary system is to these factors. The current study investigates effects of minimal second language exposure and SES on the comprehension vocabulary of 16-month-old children in the language in which they receive the greatest exposure. Study 1 revealed minimal second language exposure and SES exert significant and independent effects on a direct measure of vocabulary comprehension in English-dominant and English monolingual children (N = 72). In Study 2, we replicated the effect of minimal second language exposure in Spanish-dominant and Spanish monolingual children (N = 86), however no effect of SES on vocabulary was obtained. Our results emphasize the sensitivity of the language system to minimal changes in the environment in early development.
Vihman, M M; de Boysson-Bardies, B
Phonological structure may be seen as emerging in ontogeny from the combined effects of performance constraints rooted in the neuromotor and perceptual systems, individual lexical development and the influence of the particular ambient language. We review here the nature and origins of the earliest ambient language influences. Global effects within the first year of life include both (1) loss of early appearing phonetic gestures not supported by the ambient language and (2) positive effects, reflecting infant attention to prosody and to cues available in the visual as well as the auditory modality. In the course of early lexical development more specific effects become manifest as individual children pursue less common phonetic paths to which the ambient language provides 'sufficient exposure'.
Carpenter, Shana K; Sachs, Riebana E; Martin, Beth; Schmidt, Kristian; Looft, Ruxandra
In the present study, introductory-level German students read a simplified story and learned the meanings of new German words by reading English translations in marginal glosses versus trying to infer (i.e., guess) their translations. Students who inferred translations were given feedback in English or in German, or no feedback at all. Although immediate retention of new vocabulary was better for students who used marginal glosses, students who inferred word meanings and then received English feedback forgot fewer translations over time. Plausible but inaccurate inferences (i.e., those that made sense in the context) were more likely to be corrected by students who received English feedback as compared with German feedback, providing support for the beneficial effects of mediating information. Implausible inaccurate inferences, however, were more likely to be corrected on the delayed vocabulary test by students who received German feedback as compared with English feedback, possibly because of the additional contextual support provided by German feedback.
MacQuarrie, Sarah; Nugent, Clare; Warden, Claire
Nature-based learning is an increasingly popular type of early childhood education. Despite this, children's experiences--in particular, their form and function within different settings and how they are viewed by practitioners--are relatively unknown. Accordingly, the use of nature as a setting and a resource for learning was researched. A…
Learning Languages: The Journal of the National Network for Early Language Learning, 1998
This document consists of the three issues of the journal "Learning Languages" published during volume year 3. These issues contain the following major articles: "A National Network for Early Language Learning (NNELL): A Brief History, 1987-1997;""Juguetes Fantasticos" (Mari Haas); "A Perspective on the Cultural…
Sirinides, Phil; Fink, Ryan; DuBois, Tesla
As states, cities, and communities take a more active role in ensuring that all children have access to high quality experiences and opportunities to learn, many are looking to museums and libraries as part of the early childhood education system. Museums and libraries can play a critical role in these efforts, and there is clear momentum and…
Hedges, Helen; Cullen, Joy
This paper continues scholarly conversations about appropriate theories of development to underpin early childhood pedagogy. It focuses on sociocultural theoretical perspectives and proposes that participatory learning theories (PLTs) underpin pedagogy built on principles specified in three curricular documents. Further, the paper argues that the…
van der Leij, Aryan
Part of the Dutch Dyslexia Programme has been dedicated to early intervention. The question of whether the genetically affected learning mechanism of children who are at familial risk (FR) of developing dyslexia could be influenced by training phoneme awareness and letter-sound associations in the prereading phase was investigated. The rationale was that intervention studies reveal insights about the weaknesses of the learning mechanisms of FR children. In addition, the studies aimed to gather practical insights to be used in the development of a system of early diagnosis and prevention. Focused on the last period of kindergarten before formal reading instruction starts in Grade 1, intervention methods with comparable samples and designs but differences in delivery mode (use of computer or manual), tutor (semi-professional or parent), location (at school or at home), and additional practices (serial rapid naming or simple word reading) have been executed to test the hypothesis that the incidence and degree of dyslexia can be reduced. The present position paper summarizes the Dutch Dyslexia Programme findings and relates them to findings of other studies. It is discussed that the Dutch studies provide evidence on why prevention of dyslexia is hard to accomplish. It is argued that effective intervention should not only start early but also be adapted to the individual and often long-lasting educational needs of children at risk of reading failure.
This bestselling guide to Microsoft Word is the first and last word on Word 2013 It's a whole new Word, so jump right into this book and learn how to make the most of it. Bestselling For Dummies author Dan Gookin puts his usual fun and friendly candor back to work to show you how to navigate the new features of Word 2013. Completely in tune with the needs of the beginning user, Gookin explains how to use Word 2013 quickly and efficiently so that you can spend more time working on your projects and less time trying to figure it all out. Walks you through the capabilit
de Nooijer, Jacqueline A; van Gog, Tamara; Paas, Fred; Zwaan, Rolf A
According to the body-specificity hypothesis, hearing action words creates body-specific mental simulations of the actions. Handedness should, therefore, affect mental simulations. Given that pictures of actions also evoke mental simulations and often accompany words to be learned, would pictures that mismatch the mental simulation of words negatively affect learning? We investigated effects of pictures with a left-handed, right-handed, or bimanual perspective on left- and right-handers' learning of object-manipulation words in an artificial language. Right-handers recalled fewer definitions of words learned with a corresponding left-handed-perspective picture than with a right-handed-perspective picture. For left-handers, there was no effect of perspective. These findings suggest that mismatches between pictures and mental simulations evoked by hearing action words can negatively affect right-handers' learning. Left-handers, who encounter the right-handed perspective frequently, could presumably overcome the lack of motor experience with visual experience and, therefore, not be influenced by picture perspective.
Full Text Available The paper presents outcomes of a longitudinal study on learning motivation in children of early school age. The aim was to reveal the leading motives in first, second, third and fourth grades and to explore the dynamics of some learning motives in children over the whole period of elementary school. As it was found, the learning activity in the children was mostly motivated by social motives, among which the leading ones were the motives of selfdetermination and wellbeing. As for learning motives, over the course of all four years the children were for the most part motivated by the content of the learning activity, and not by its process. The dynamics of certain social motives of the learning activity varied across the sample, with some going through the periods of increase and decrease and others having a oneway dynamics. The study also revealed a decrease in the motivation rooted in the learning activity itself between the second and third year; at the same time, in the second, third and fourth years the children were more motivated by the content of the learning activity than by its process
Aceti, Katherine Jane; Wang, Ye
The study explored the effects of an 8-week intervention in which a teacher/researcher used direct instruction to show the multiple meanings of 7 words to 4 deaf students ages 11-13 years in a school for the deaf. Applying conclusions from emerging research that links knowledge and strategy with metacognitive skills, the teacher/researcher used specific metacognitive strategies to facilitate both the acquisition of the concept of multimeaning words and the ability to distinguish one meaning from another while reading, and thus improved the students' reading comprehension. The study participants were able to increase their vocabulary of multimeaning words as well as their reading comprehension in general, and, overall, experienced an improvement in their observable understanding and confidence when approaching the task of reading.
Ikuma, Yuko; Akahane-Yamada, Reiko
Laboratory training experiment was conducted in order to examine the effect of acoustic and semantic contexts when learning second language phoneme perception. Fifty minimal pairs of English words contrasting in /r/ and /l/ were produced by native speakers of American English in three conditions; in isolation (WD), within semantically neutral carrier sentences (NS), and within semantically contextual carrier sentences (CS). Participants were native speakers of Japanese, and were divided into three groups; each was trained to identify /r/ and /l/ in one of above three conditions. In pretest, identification accuracy varied by condition in the order, NSlanguage education will be discussed. [Work supported by TAO, Japan.
Petersson, Eva; Borum, Nanna
in Varde municipality, Denmark, Varde Library, Denmark, and Aalborg University, Denmark. The project is concerned with preparing young children to enter the digital world and to bridge the digital divide. In doing so, there is a specific interest in how digital technology can foster integration, language......This paper reports on a study exploring the outcomes from young children’s play with digital technology in formal and semi-formal learning practices. The study is part of a bigger project being conducted by IBM KidSmart Early Learning Program, Denmark, the Danish Agency of Culture, 13 kindergartens...... and concept development through an inquiry-based mode of play, learning, and interaction. This study applies a human-centred design approach to learning and play in order to investigate affordances and constraints that emerge from younger children’s engagement with digital technology, particularly focusing...
Caplan, Jeremy B; Boulton, Kathy L; Gagné, Christina L
Early verbal-memory researchers assumed participants represent memory of a pair of unrelated items with 2 independent, separately modifiable, directional associations. However, memory for pairs of unrelated words (A-B) exhibits associative symmetry: a near-perfect correlation between accuracy on forward (A →?) and backward (?← B) cued recall. This was viewed as arguing against the independent-associations hypothesis and in favor of the hypothesis that associations are remembered as holistic units. Here we test the Holistic Representation hypothesis further by examining cued recall of compound words. If we suppose preexisting words are more unitized than novel associations, the Holistic Representation hypothesis predicts compound words (e.g., ROSE BUD) will have a higher forward-backward correlation than novel compounds (e.g., BRIEF TAX). We report the opposite finding: Compound words, as well as noncompound words, exhibited less associative symmetry than novel compounds. This challenges the Holistic Representation account of associative symmetry. Moreover, preexperimental associates (positional family size) influenced associative symmetry-but asymmetrically: Increasing family size of the last constituent increasing decoupled forward and backward recall, but family size of the 1st constituent had no such effect. In short, highly practiced, meaningful associations exhibit associative asymmetry, suggesting associative symmetry is not diagnostic of holistic representations but, rather, is a characteristic of ad hoc associations. With additional learning, symmetric associations may be replaced by directional, independently modifiable associations as verbal associations become embedded within a rich knowledge structure.
Berkel-van Hoof, L. van; Hermans, D.; Knoors, H.E.T.; Verhoeven, L.T.W.
Background: Augmentative signs may facilitate word learning in children with vocabulary difficulties, for example, children who are Deaf/Hard of Hearing (DHH) and children with Specific Language Impairment (SLI). Despite the fact that augmentative signs may aid second language learning in population
Kaufman, Leah; McLaughlin, T. F.; Derby, K. Mark; Waco, Theresa
The purpose of this study was to study the effect of pairing reading racetracks and flashcards for the teaching of sight words. The first participant was diagnosed with a specific learning disability in reading and writing and was also diagnosed with ADHD. The second participant was diagnosed with a specific learning disability in reading,…
Vocabulary acquisition/learning in large quantities withina certain short period of time is of importance for Chinesestudents to learn English acceleratively.This contrast experimentaims at exploring a serial of creative mnemonic systems in wordlearning to develop the super learning of English.The result hasproven the good effect and the possibility of teaching suchcreative mnemonic systems.
Anthony, Glenda; McLachlan, Claire; Lim Fock Poh, Rachel
Narratives that capture children's learning as they go about their day-to-day activities are promoted as a powerful assessment tool within early childhood settings. However, in the New Zealand context, there is increasing concern that learning stories—the preferred form of narrative assessment—currently downplay domain knowledge. In this paper, we draw on data from 13 teacher interviews and samples of 18 children's learning stories to examine how mathematics is made visible within learning stories. Despite appreciating that mathematics is embedded in a range of everyday activities within the centres, we found that the nature of a particular activity appeared to influence `how' and `what' the teachers chose to document as mathematics learning. Many of the teachers expressed a preference to document and analyse mathematics learning that occurred within explicit mathematics activities rather than within play that involves mathematics. Our concern is that this restricted documentation of mathematical activity could potentially limit opportunities for mathematics learning both in the centre and home settings.
Paquette-Smith, Melissa; Johnson, Elizabeth K.
By their second birthday, children have begun using grammatical cues to decipher the meaning of newly encountered words. By 3 years of age, there is evidence that children are more reliant on grammatical than social cues to decipher verb meaning (Nappa, Wessel, McEldoon, Gleitman, & Trueswell, 2009). Here, we investigate children's reliance on…
Okafor, Emmanuel; Pawara, Pornntiwa; Karaaba, Mahir; Surinta, Olarik; Codreanu, Valeriu; Schomaker, Lambertus; Wiering, Marco
Most research in image classification has focused on applications such as face, object, scene and character recognition. This paper examines a comparative study between deep convolutional neural networks (CNNs) and bag of visual words (BOW) variants for recognizing animals. We developed two variants
Fennell, Christopher T.; Waxman, Sandra R.
Past research has uncovered a surprising paradox: Although 14-month-olds have exquisite phonetic discrimination skills (e.g., distinguishing [b] from [d]), they have difficulty using phonetic detail when mapping "novel" words to objects in laboratory tasks (confusing "bin" and "din"). While some have attributed infants' difficulty to immature word…
Schlesinger, Nora W; Gray, Shelley
The purpose of this study was to investigate whether the use of simultaneous multisensory structured language instruction promoted better letter name and sound production, word reading, and word spelling for second grade children with typical development (N = 6) or with dyslexia (N = 5) than structured language instruction alone. The use of non-English graphemes (letters) to represent two pretend languages was used to control for children's lexical knowledge. A multiple baseline, multiple probe across subjects single-case design, with an embedded alternating treatments design, was used to compare the efficacy of multisensory and structured language interventions. Both interventions provided explicit systematic phonics instruction; however, the multisensory intervention also utilized simultaneous engagement of at least two sensory modalities (visual, auditory, and kinesthetic/tactile). Participant's graphed data was visually analyzed, and individual Tau-U and weighted Tau-U effect sizes were calculated for the outcome variables of letter name production, letter sound production, word reading, and word spelling. The multisensory intervention did not provide an advantage over the structured intervention for participants with typical development or dyslexia. However, both interventions had an overall treatment effect for participants with typical development and dyslexia, although intervention effects varied by outcome variable.
Tsesmeli, Styliani N; Koutselaki, Despoina
The study aimed to investigate the spelling performance and the semantic understanding of compound words by 103 Greek primary school children (first through sixth grade). The experimental group comprised of 25 children with spelling difficulties and compared with a control group of 78 children of typical development. Children were asked to spell and define 20 concrete and abstract compounds. They were also asked to spell 20 different compounds after providing their definitions in terms of their morphological constituents. Main results indicated that concrete compounds were spelled and defined better than abstract ones, but the experimental group performed significantly lower than the control group on both word types. Children with spelling disabilities were able to use less etymological information in defining compound words than their typical classmates, suggesting that they understand less the internal structure of morphologically complex words. These results are compatible with the experimental literature and are discussed in terms of the morphophonemic nature of Greek language as a transparent orthography with a rich morphology.
Hemsley, Gayle; Holm, Alison; Dodd, Barbara
This study investigated cross-linguistic influence in acquisition of a second lexicon, evaluating Samoan-English sequentially bilingual children (initial mean age 4 ; 9) during their first 18 months of school. Receptive and Expressive Vocabulary tasks evaluated acquisition of four word types: cognates, matched nouns, phrasal nouns and holonyms.…
Fei Tian; Bin Gao; En-Hong Chen; Tie-Yan Liu
Word embedding, which refers to low-dimensional dense vector representations of natural words, has demon-strated its power in many natural language processing tasks. However, it may suffer from the inaccurate and incomplete information contained in the free text corpus as training data. To tackle this challenge, there have been quite a few studies that leverage knowledge graphs as an additional information source to improve the quality of word embedding. Although these studies have achieved certain success, they have neglected some important facts about knowledge graphs: 1) many relationships in knowledge graphs are many-to-one, one-to-many or even many-to-many, rather than simply one-to-one; 2) most head entities and tail entities in knowledge graphs come from very different semantic spaces. To address these issues, in this paper, we propose a new algorithm named ProjectNet. ProjectNet models the relationships between head and tail entities after transforming them with different low-rank projection matrices. The low-rank projection can allow non one-to-one relationships between entities, while different projection matrices for head and tail entities allow them to originate in different semantic spaces. The experimental results demonstrate that ProjectNet yields more accurate word embedding than previous studies, and thus leads to clear improvements in various natural language processing tasks.
Kasschau, Richard A.
The research reported here was directed at two distinct but related problems: (1) the assumption of bipolarity underlying standard semantic differential scales, and (2) the demonstration of the similarities between D-4 (the square root of the sum of squares of the difference between each word's mean rating and 4.00 on a number of scales) as a…
van Sonderen, Eric; Sanderman, Robbert; Coyne, James C.
Objective: We examined the effectiveness of reverse worded items as a means of reducing or preventing response bias. We first distinguished between several types of response bias that are often confused in literature. We next developed arguments why reversing items is probably never a good way to ad
Janssen, Maarten; Visser, A.
In many disciplines, the notion of a word is of central importance. For instance, morphology studies le mot comme tel, pris isol´ement (Mel’ˇcuk, 1993 ). In the philosophy of language the word was often considered to be the primary bearer of meaning. Lexicography has as its fundamental role to c
Cho, Sookeun; Lee, Miseon; O'Grady, William; Song, Minsun; Suzuki, Takaaki; Yoshinaga, Naoko
Pre-school Korean children typically manifest higher comprehension rates on the 'unmarked' SOV sentences of their language than on the 'scrambled' OSV patterns. To date, however, scant attention has been paid to children's ordering preferences with respect to direct and indirect objects. The results of an act-out comprehension experiment involving 40 subjects (aged 4;0 to 7;0) show a strong, statistically significant preference for the accusative-dative order, despite evidence that the reverse order is more common in mother-to-child speech. Two hypotheses are considered, one involving the relationship between word order and grammatical relations and the other involving the relationship between word order and the types of situations denoted by the sentences in question. The results of a follow-up study involving transitive verbs with instrument arguments provide strong evidence in favour of the latter hypothesis.
Wang, Yuanyuan; Lee, Christopher S; Houston, Derek M
Over the past couple of decades, research has established that (1) infant-directed speech (IDS) facilitates speech, language, and cognitive development; and (2) infants are sensitive to the rhythmic structures in the ambient language. However, little is known about the role of IDS in infants' processing of rhythmic structures. Building on these two lines of research, whether IDS enhances infants' sensitivity to the predominant stress pattern (trochaic) in English was asked. To address this question, 9-month-old American infants were familiarized and tested with both trochaic (e.g., lazy) and iambic (e.g., cartoon) words presented in either IDS or adult-directed speech (ADS). Infants showed listening preference for the trochaic over iambic words when the speech was presented in ADS, but not in IDS. These results suggest that IDS attenuates infants' preference for trochaic stress pattern. Further acoustical analyses demonstrated that IDS provided less salient spectral cues for the contrasts between stressed and unstressed syllables in trochaic words. These findings encourage further efforts to explore the effects of IDS on language acquisition from a broader perspective.
Sigalov, Nadine; Maidenbaum, Shachar; Amedi, Amir
Cognitive neuroscience has long attempted to determine the ways in which cortical selectivity develops, and the impact of nature vs. nurture on it. Congenital blindness (CB) offers a unique opportunity to test this question as the brains of blind individuals develop without visual experience. Here we approach this question through the reading network. Several areas in the visual cortex have been implicated as part of the reading network, and one of the main ones among them is the VWFA, which is selective to the form of letters and words. But what happens in the CB brain? On the one hand, it has been shown that cross-modal plasticity leads to the recruitment of occipital areas, including the VWFA, for linguistic tasks. On the other hand, we have recently demonstrated VWFA activity for letters in contrast to other visual categories when the information is provided via other senses such as touch or audition. Which of these tasks is more dominant? By which mechanism does the CB brain process reading? Using fMRI and visual-to-auditory sensory substitution which transfers the topographical features of the letters we compare reading with semantic and scrambled conditions in a group of CB. We found activation in early auditory and visual cortices during the early processing phase (letter), while the later phase (word) showed VWFA and bilateral dorsal-intraparietal activations for words. This further supports the notion that many visual regions in general, even early visual areas, also maintain a predilection for task processing even when the modality is variable and in spite of putative lifelong linguistic cross-modal plasticity. Furthermore, we find that the VWFA is recruited preferentially for letter and word form, while it was not recruited, and even exhibited deactivation, for an immediately subsequent semantic task suggesting that despite only short sensory substitution experience orthographic task processing can dominate semantic processing in the VWFA. On a wider
Full Text Available Mathematics is one of the most objective, logical, and practical academic disciplines. Yet, in addition to cognitive skills, mathematical problem solving also involves affective factors. In the current study, we first investigated effects of mathematics anxiety (MA and mathematical metacognition on word problem solving (WPS. We tested 224 children (116 boys, M = 10.15 years old, SD = 0.56 with the Mathematics Anxiety Scale for Children, the Chinese Revised-edition Questionnaire of Pupil's Metacognitive Ability in Mathematics, and WPS tasks. The results indicated that mathematical metacognition mediated the effect of MA on WPS after controlling for IQ. Second, we divided the children into four mathematics achievement groups including high achieving (HA, typical achieving (TA, low achieving (LA, and mathematical learning difficulty (MLD. Because mathematical metacognition and MA predicted mathematics achievement, we compared group differences in metacognition and MA with IQ partialled out. The results showed that children with MLD scored lower in self-image and higher in learning mathematics anxiety (LMA than the TA and HA children, but not in mathematical evaluation anxiety (MEA. MLD children's LMA was also higher than that of their LA counterparts. These results provide insight into factors that may mediate poor WPS performance which emerges under pressure in mathematics. These results also suggest that the anxiety during learning mathematics should be taken into account in mathematical learning difficulty interventions.
Lai, Yinghui; Zhu, Xiaoshuang; Chen, Yinghe; Li, Yanjun
Mathematics is one of the most objective, logical, and practical academic disciplines. Yet, in addition to cognitive skills, mathematical problem solving also involves affective factors. In the current study, we first investigated effects of mathematics anxiety (MA) and mathematical metacognition on word problem solving (WPS). We tested 224 children (116 boys, M = 10.15 years old, SD = 0.56) with the Mathematics Anxiety Scale for Children, the Chinese Revised-edition Questionnaire of Pupil's Metacognitive Ability in Mathematics, and WPS tasks. The results indicated that mathematical metacognition mediated the effect of MA on WPS after controlling for IQ. Second, we divided the children into four mathematics achievement groups including high achieving (HA), typical achieving (TA), low achieving (LA), and mathematical learning difficulty (MLD). Because mathematical metacognition and MA predicted mathematics achievement, we compared group differences in metacognition and MA with IQ partialled out. The results showed that children with MLD scored lower in self-image and higher in learning mathematics anxiety (LMA) than the TA and HA children, but not in mathematical evaluation anxiety (MEA). MLD children's LMA was also higher than that of their LA counterparts. These results provide insight into factors that may mediate poor WPS performance which emerges under pressure in mathematics. These results also suggest that the anxiety during learning mathematics should be taken into account in mathematical learning difficulty interventions.
Bakker, Iske; Takashima, Atsuko; van Hell, Janet G; Janzen, Gabriele; McQueen, James M
Novel words can be recalled immediately and after little exposure, but require a post-learning consolidation period to show word-like behaviour such as lexical competition. This pattern is thought to reflect a qualitative shift from episodic to lexical representations. However, several studies have reported immediate effects of meaningful novel words on semantic processing, suggesting that integration of novel word meanings may not require consolidation. The current study synthesises and extends these findings by showing a dissociation between lexical and semantic effects on the electrophysiological (N400, LPC) response to novel words. The difference in N400 amplitude between novel and existing words (a lexical effect) decreased significantly after a 24-h consolidation period, providing novel support for the hypothesis that offline consolidation aids lexicalisation. In contrast, novel words preceded by semantically related primes elicited a more positive LPC response (a semantic-priming effect) both before and after consolidation, indicating that certain semantic effects can be observed even when words have not been fully lexicalised. We propose that novel meanings immediately start to contribute to semantic processing, but that the underlying neural processes may shift from strategic to more automatic with consolidation.
Klahr, David; Nigam, Milena
In a study with 112 third- and fourth-grade children, we measured the relative effectiveness of discovery learning and direct instruction at two points in the learning process: (a) during the initial acquisition of the basic cognitive objective (a procedure for designing and interpreting simple, unconfounded experiments) and (b) during the subsequent transfer and application of this basic skill to more diffuse and authentic reasoning associated with the evaluation of science-fair posters. We found not only that many more children learned from direct instruction than from discovery learning, but also that when asked to make broader, richer scientific judgments, the many children who learned about experimental design from direct instruction performed as well as those few children who discovered the method on their own. These results challenge predictions derived from the presumed superiority of discovery approaches in teaching young children basic procedures for early scientific investigations.
Mohammad Madallh Alhabahba
Full Text Available A rigorous understanding of the use of Smartphones for foreign language vocabulary acquisition is crucial. Employing the technology acceptance model, this study aims to investigate students’ behavioural factors affecting Saudi students’ attitudes towards employing Smartphones for foreign vocabulary acquisition. Two hundred and seventy-three students studying in a preparatory year programme were surveyed. SmartPLS was employed to analyse the data obtained from the study’s sample. The results revealed that perceived usefulness and attitude proved to be significantly and positively related to vocabulary development. In addition, perceived usefulness and perceived ease of use proved to be significant predictors of students’ attitudes towards the use of Smartphone for vocabulary learning. However, the study showed that the relationship between perceived ease of use and vocabulary development is not significant. Thus, publishers of dictionaries may find it necessary to take into account the important role played by the design of dictionaries interfaces in facilitating the use of dictionaries in Smartphones. Furthermore, teachers and educators are encouraged to employ creative activities (e.g., word guessing games that invest students’ use of Smartphones to learn vocabularies. Using Smartphones in learning improves interaction among students and teachers. Discussion and conclusions are also provided.
Suhr, Julie; Demireva, Petya; Heffner, Kathi
A pattern of performance on a word list learning task known as a reduced primacy effect has been shown to be characteristic of Alzheimer's disease (AD) and can distinguish AD from depression. Deficits in memory and hippocampal atrophy seen in AD have been associated with hypercortisolism. The present study evaluated whether the reduced primacy effect is associated with elevated salivary cortisol in a sample of 40 healthy older community-dwelling adults participating in a study of memory and stress. We found that primacy, but not recency, was associated with higher salivary cortisol levels. In addition, participants who showed a reduced primacy had higher salivary cortisol levels than those with a normal serial position curve. Results suggest that there may be value to examining both serial position curves and changes to cortisol patterns over time as potential predictors of cognitive decline in healthy older adults.
Henz, Diana; Schöllhorn, Wolfgang I.
Current research demonstrates increased learning rates in differential learning (DL) compared to repetitive training. To date, little is known on the underlying neurophysiological processes in DL that contribute to superior performance over repetitive practice. In the present study, we measured electroencephalographic (EEG) brain activation patterns after DL and repetitive badminton serve training. Twenty-four semi-professional badminton players performed badminton serves in a DL and repetitive training schedule in a within-subjects design. EEG activity was recorded from 19 electrodes according to the 10–20 system before and immediately after each 20-min exercise. Increased theta activity was obtained in contralateral parieto-occipital regions after DL. Further, increased posterior alpha activity was obtained in DL compared to repetitive training. Results indicate different underlying neuronal processes in DL and repetitive training with a higher involvement of parieto-occipital areas in DL. We argue that DL facilitates early consolidation in motor learning indicated by post-training increases in theta and alpha activity. Further, brain activation patterns indicate somatosensory working memory processes where attentional resources are allocated in processing of somatosensory information in DL. Reinforcing a somatosensory memory trace might explain increased motor learning rates in DL. Finally, this memory trace is more stable against interference from internal and external disturbances that afford executively controlled processing such as attentional processes.
Full Text Available Carefully-constructed field-based experiences in teacher education programs have been recognized as one of the essential conditions for effective teacher learning. Most college/university-based teacher education programs, however, are still dominated by the epistemology that academic knowledge is the authoritative source of knowledge about teaching, while spaces outside the college classroom remain the “practice fields”. This study examines Project CONNECT (PC, an afterschool program designed to create early experiential learning opportunities by bringing together different aspects of expertise from the schools, communities, and universities. Preservice teachers (PSTs in this study were placed to work with children one afternoon a week in school-based sites in their sophomore and junior years. Case study design was adopted to assess the impact of the experience on teacher learning as well as the process created such effects. Multiple data such as open-ended survey, written reflection, and field observation notes were collected and analyzed. Results revealed participants’ transformation of professional identity, and development of professional skills and dispositions. Several factors emerged as important to PSTs’ learning throughout the experience, including connections between the course and the program, quality of faculty supervision, and systematic reflection. Implications for teacher education were discussed.
Full Text Available Carefully constructed field-based experiences in teacher education programs have been recognized as one of the essential conditions for effective teacher learning. Most college/university-based teacher education programs, however, are still dominated by the epistemology that academic knowledge is the authoritative source of knowledge about teaching, while spaces outside the college classroom remain the “practice fields.” This study examined Project CONNECT (PC, an after-school program designed to create early experiential learning opportunities for pre-service teachers (PSTs by bringing together different aspects of expertise from the schools, communities, and universities. Pre-service teachers in this study worked with children one afternoon a week in school-based sites during their sophomore and junior years. Case study was adopted to assess the impact of the experience on teacher learning and the factors contributing to the effect. Multiple data sources, including weekly reflection journals, field observation notes, and an exit survey were collected and analyzed. Results revealed participants’ transformation of professional identity, and development of professional skills and dispositions. Several factors emerged as important to PSTs’ learning throughout the experience, including connections between the course and the program, quality of faculty supervision, and systematic reflection. Implications for teacher education were discussed.
Alkhatib, Bassel; Alnahhas, Ammar; Albadawi, Firas
As text sources are getting broader, measuring text similarity is becoming more compelling. Automatic text classification, search engines and auto answering systems are samples of applications that rely on text similarity. Learning management systems (LMS) are becoming more important since electronic media is getting more publicly available. As…
Knowing the origin of a language helps us to determine the historical background of that language. As language itself is such a system of a society that is continuously evolving as that aforementioned society learns and technologically develops along with its roots or origins. Like many other languages, English is also a language that has roots or…
Vazquez, Maria D.; Delisle, Sarah S.; Saylor, Megan M.
The present study investigates whether four- and six-year-old children use pragmatic competence as a criterion for learning from someone else. Specifically, we ask whether children use others' adherence to Gricean maxims to determine whether they will offer valid labels for novel objects. Six-year-olds recognized adherence to the maxims of…
Zahner, William C.
This study investigates how two groups of bilingual algebra students reasoned about rate, slope, and linear functions during peer discussions. This investigation brings together and advances research that investigates issues at the intersection of collaborative learning, algebraic reasoning, and the use of mathematical discourse practices. A…
Wright, Kristyn; Poulin-Dubois, Diane
The Modified Checklist for Autism in Toddlers (M-CHAT) is a 23-item questionnaire used in primary screening of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). The current studies examine the concurrent validity of the M-CHAT in its ability to predict 18-month-olds' performance on theory of mind and word learning tasks. In Experiment 1, infants' understanding of…
Gray, Shelley; Pittman, Andrea; Weinhold, Juliet
Purpose: In this study, the authors assessed the effects of phonotactic probability and neighborhood density on word-learning configuration by preschoolers with specific language impairment (SLI) and typical language development (TD). Method: One hundred thirty-one children participated: 48 with SLI, 44 with TD matched on age and gender, and 39…
Arnau, David; Arevalillo-Herraez, Miguel; Puig, Luis; Gonzalez-Calero, Jose Antonio
Designers of interactive learning environments with a focus on word problem solving usually have to compromise between the amount of resolution paths that a user is allowed to follow and the quality of the feedback provided. We have built an intelligent tutoring system (ITS) that is able to both track the user's actions and provide adequate…
Poliakoff, Anne Rogers, Ed.
This collection of papers makes the case for early and sustained foreign language education as part of the core K-12 curriculum, and for training teachers prepared to create such an education for their students. "Early Language Learning: A National Necessity" (Christine L. Brown), discusses the importance of early language learning, resources for…
SIGNAL WORDS TOPIC FACT SHEET NPIC fact sheets are designed to answer questions that are commonly asked by the ... making decisions about pesticide use. What are Signal Words? Signal words are found on pesticide product labels, ...
Horst, Jessica S.; Parsons, Kelly L; Bryan, Natasha M.
Although reading storybooks to preschool children is a common activity believed to improve language skills, how children learn new vocabulary from being to has been largely neglected in the shared storybook reading literature. The current study systematically explores the effects of repeatedly reading the same storybooks on both young children's fast and slow mapping ability. Specially created storybooks were read to 3-year-old children three times during the course of one week. Each of the n...
Horst, Jessica S.; Parsons, Kelly L; Bryan, Natasha M.
Although shared storybook reading is a common activity believed to improve the language skills of preschool children, how children learn new vocabulary from such experiences has been largely neglected in the literature. The current study systematically explores the effects of repeatedly reading the same storybooks on both young children's fast and slow mapping abilities. Specially created storybooks were read to 3-year-old children three times during the course of 1 week. Each of the nine sto...
Zora, Hatice; Heldner, Mattias; Schwarz, Iris-Corinna
Perceptual correlates of Turkish word stress and their contribution to lexical access were studied using the mismatch negativity (MMN) component in event-related potentials (ERPs). The MMN was expected to indicate if segmentally identical Turkish words were distinguished on the sole basis of prosodic features such as fundamental frequency (f0), spectral emphasis (SE), and duration. The salience of these features in lexical access was expected to be reflected in the amplitude of MMN responses. In a multi-deviant oddball paradigm, neural responses to changes in f0, SE, and duration individually, as well as to all three features combined, were recorded for words and pseudowords presented to 14 native speakers of Turkish. The word and pseudoword contrast was used to differentiate language-related effects from acoustic-change effects on the neural responses. First and in line with previous findings, the overall MMN was maximal over frontal and central scalp locations. Second, changes in prosodic features elicited neural responses both in words and pseudowords, confirming the brain's automatic response to any change in auditory input. However, there were processing differences between the prosodic features, most significantly in f0: While f0 manipulation elicited a slightly right-lateralized frontally-maximal MMN in words, it elicited a frontal P3a in pseudowords. Considering that P3a is associated with involuntary allocation of attention to salient changes, the manipulations of f0 in the absence of lexical processing lead to an intentional evaluation of pitch change. f0 is therefore claimed to be lexically specified in Turkish. Rather than combined features, individual prosodic features differentiate language-related effects from acoustic-change effects. The present study confirms that segmentally identical words can be distinguished on the basis of prosodic information alone, and establishes the salience of f0 in lexical access. PMID:26834534
Hanna, Jeff; Shtyrov, Yury; Williams, John; Pulvermüller, Friedemann
Humans show variable degrees of success in acquiring a second language (L2). In many cases, morphological and syntactic knowledge remain deficient, although some learners succeed in reaching nativelike levels, even if they begin acquiring their L2 relatively late. In this study, we use psycholinguistic, online language proficiency tests and a neurophysiological index of syntactic processing, the syntactic mismatch negativity (sMMN) to local agreement violations, to compare behavioural and neurophysiological markers of grammar processing between native speakers (NS) of English and non-native speakers (NNS). Variable grammar proficiency was measured by psycholinguistic tests. When NS heard ungrammatical word sequences lacking agreement between subject and verb (e.g. *we kicks), the MMN was enhanced compared with syntactically legal sentences (e.g. he kicks). More proficient NNS also showed this difference, but less proficient NNS did not. The main cortical sources of the MMN responses were localised in bilateral superior temporal areas, where, crucially, source strength of grammar-related neuronal activity correlated significantly with grammatical proficiency of individual L2 speakers as revealed by the psycholinguistic tests. As our results show similar, early MMN indices to morpho-syntactic agreement violations among both native speakers and non-native speakers with high grammar proficiency, they appear consistent with the use of similar brain mechanisms for at least certain aspects of L1 and L2 grammars.
Axelsson, Emma L; Williams, Sophie E; Horst, Jessica S
In the first few years of life children spend a good proportion of time sleeping as well as acquiring the meanings of hundreds of words. There is now ample evidence of the effects of sleep on memory in adults and the number of studies demonstrating the effects of napping and nocturnal sleep in children is also mounting. In particular, sleep appears to benefit children's memory for recently-encountered novel words. The effect of sleep on children's generalization of novel words across multiple items, however, is less clear. Given that sleep is polyphasic in the early years, made up of multiple episodes, and children's word learning is gradual and strengthened slowly over time, it is highly plausible that sleep is a strong candidate in supporting children's memory for novel words. Importantly, it appears that when children sleep shortly after exposure to novel word-object pairs retention is better than if sleep is delayed, suggesting that napping plays a vital role in long-term word retention for young children. Word learning is a complex, challenging, and important part of development, thus the role that sleep plays in children's retention of novel words is worthy of attention. As such, ensuring children get sufficient good quality sleep and regular opportunities to nap may be critical for language acquisition.
Harris, Karen R; Graham, Steve
By the upper elementary grades, writing becomes an essential tool both for learning and for showing what you know. Students who struggle significantly with writing are at a terrible disadvantage. Data from the National Assessment of Educational Progress indicate that only 25% of students can be classified as competent writers; students with learning disabilities (LD) have even greater problems with writing than their normally achieving peers and frequently demonstrate a deteriorating attitude toward writing after the primary grades. In this article, we focus on composing and the writing process, and examine the knowledge base about writing development and instruction among students with LD. We address what research tells us about skilled writers and the development of writing knowledge, strategies, skill, and the will to write, and how this relates to students with LD. Next, we summarize what has been learned from research on writing development, effective instruction, and the writing abilities of students with LD in terms of effective instruction for these students. Finally, we indicate critical areas for future research.
Zinsser, Katherine M.; Dusenbury, Linda
The state of Illinois in the central United States has long been a trendsetter both in the development of learning standards and in addressing social and emotional learning in education settings. With a recent revision to the state's early learning standards, published in 2013, the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) fully aligned its…
Maloney, Erin A; Converse, Benjamin A; Gibbs, Chloe R; Levine, Susan C; Beilock, Sian L
By the time children begin formal schooling, their experiences at home have already contributed to large variations in their math and language development, and once school begins, academic achievement continues to depend strongly on influences outside of school. It is thus essential that educational reform strategies involve primary caregivers. Specifically, programs and policies should promote and support aspects of caregiver-child interaction that have been empirically demonstrated to boost early learning and should seek to impede "motivational sinkholes" that threaten to undermine caregivers' desires to engage their children effectively. This article draws on cognitive and behavioral science to detail simple, low-cost, and effective tools caregivers can employ to prepare their children for educational success and then describes conditions that can protect and facilitate caregivers' motivation to use those tools. Policy recommendations throughout focus on using existing infrastructure to more deeply engage caregivers in effective early childhood education at home.
Yuewu, Lin; Qin, Yang
Culture-loaded words and expressions are loaded with specific national cultural information and indicate deep national culture. They are the direct and indirect reflection of national culture in the structure of words and expressions. The improper use of culture-loaded words often leads to misunderstanding in cross-cultural communication. However,…
Floccia, Caroline; Nazzi, Thierry; Delle Luche, Claire; Poltrock, Silvana; Goslin, Jeremy
Following the proposal that consonants are more involved than vowels in coding the lexicon (Nespor, Peña & Mehler, 2003), an early lexical consonant bias was found from age 1;2 in French but an equal sensitivity to consonants and vowels from 1;0 to 2;0 in English. As different tasks were used in French and English, we sought to clarify this…
Oxfam UK/I sponsored a gender learning workshop in April 1996 for 40 Oxfam staff members from around the world as well as UK-based staff and invited guests. Case studies were presented as examples of good practice, and key issues such as management performance and the use of incentives for developing the best practice on gender were discussed. Major issues generating debate centered around budget cuts versus gender performance and the need for leadership commitment. The workshop provided an opportunity to examine gender practice from the point of view of front-line personnel. The International Director of Oxfam UK/I stressed the importance of focusing the agency's work through a gender perspective.
The paper introduces the basic knowledge of special subject learning website,focuses on the design and function implementation of special subject learning website of Word 2003 language processing based on the instructional design theory and puts forward unique design ideas and strategies through the analysis of the learners'needs,which is the basis of the structural design of the website.The paper also gives a detailed instruction of the home page design, as well as an elaboration of the function implementation of the website,and looks forward to the application prospect of special subject learning website.%介绍了专题学习网站的基本知识,着重介绍Word 2003文字处理专题学习网站的设计与功能实现,专题学习网站以教学设计为基础,通过对网站学习者的需求进行分析,提出了独到的设计思想和设计策略,根据需求目标完成该网站的结构设计,详细介绍了首页的设计,同时也重点阐述了网站功能的实现,并展望专题学习网站的应用前景.
Li, Sheng; Tang, Bo; He, Haibo
As a man-made disease, multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB) is mainly caused by improper treatment programs and poor patient supervision, most of which could be prevented. According to the daily treatment and inspection records of tuberculosis (TB) cases, this study focuses on establishing a warning system which could early evaluate the risk of TB patients converting to MDR-TB using machine learning methods. Different imbalanced sampling strategies and classification methods were compared due to the disparity between the number of TB cases and MDR-TB cases in historical data. The final results show that the relative optimal predictions results can be obtained by adopting CART-USBagg classification model in the first 90 days of half of a standardized treatment process.
'Affect' or 'effect'? 'Right', 'write' or 'rite'? English can certainly be a confusing language, whether you're a native speaker or learning it as a second language. 'The Right Word' is the essential reference to help people master its subtleties and avoid making mistakes. Divided into three sections, it first examines homophones - those tricky words that sound the same but are spelled differently - then looks at words that often confuse before providing a list of commonly misspelled words.
Chung, Kevin Kien Hoa; Ho, Connie Suk-Han
This study examined the relations between reading-related cognitive skills and word reading development of Chinese children with dyslexia in their Chinese language (L1) and in English (L2). A total of 84 bilingual children-28 with dyslexia, 28 chronological age (CA) controls, and 28 reading-level (RL) controls-participated and were administered measures of word reading, rapid naming, visual-orthographic skills, and phonological and morphological awareness in both L1 and L2. Children with dyslexia showed weaker performance than CA controls in both languages and had more difficulties in phonological awareness in English but not in Chinese. In addition, reading-related cognitive skills in Chinese contributed significantly to the ability to read English words, suggesting cross-linguistic transfer from L1 to L2. Results found evidence for different phonological units of awareness related to the characteristics of the different languages being learned, supporting the psycholinguistic grain size and linguistic coding differences hypotheses.
McNichol, Heidi; Davis, Julie Margaret; O'Brien, Katherine R.
In this study, engineers and educators worked together to adapt and apply the ecological footprint (EF) methodology to an early learning centre in Brisbane, Australia. Results were analysed to determine how environmental impact can be reduced at the study site and more generally across early childhood settings. It was found that food, transport…
Hupert, Naomi; Cervantes, Francisco; DeGroof, Emily
As part of the "Ready to Learn" Initiative, Education Development Center, Inc. (EDC), was charged with addressing the evaluation of Technological Enhancements for the outreach efforts of three producers: Out of the Blue's Super WHY! Technology Add-On; Sesame Workshop's The Electric Company School's Initiative Curriculum; and WordWorld's eBook…
Ruth De Diego Balaguer
Full Text Available The initial process of identifying words from spoken language and the detection of more subtle regularities underlying their structure are mandatory processes for language acquisition. Little is known about the cognitive mechanisms that allow us to extract these two types of information and their specific time-course of acquisition following initial contact with a new language. We report time-related electrophysiological changes that occurred while participants learned an artificial language. These changes strongly correlated with the discovery of the structural rules embedded in the words. These changes were clearly different from those related to word learning and occurred during the first minutes of exposition. There is a functional distinction in the nature of the electrophysiological signals during acquisition: an increase in negativity (N400 in the central electrodes is related to word-learning and development of a frontal positivity (P2 is related to rule-learning. In addition, the results of an online implicit and a post-learning test indicate that, once the rules of the language have been acquired, new words following the rule are processed as words of the language. By contrast, new words violating the rule induce syntax-related electrophysiological responses when inserted online in the stream (an early frontal negativity followed by a late posterior positivity and clear lexical effects when presented in isolation (N400 modulation. The present study provides direct evidence suggesting that the mechanisms to extract words and structural dependencies from continuous speech are functionally segregated. When these mechanisms are engaged, the electrophysiological marker associated with rule-learning appears very quickly, during the earliest phases of exposition to a new language.
De Diego Balaguer, Ruth; Toro, Juan Manuel; Rodriguez-Fornells, Antoni; Bachoud-Lévi, Anne-Catherine
The initial process of identifying words from spoken language and the detection of more subtle regularities underlying their structure are mandatory processes for language acquisition. Little is known about the cognitive mechanisms that allow us to extract these two types of information and their specific time-course of acquisition following initial contact with a new language. We report time-related electrophysiological changes that occurred while participants learned an artificial language. These changes strongly correlated with the discovery of the structural rules embedded in the words. These changes were clearly different from those related to word learning and occurred during the first minutes of exposition. There is a functional distinction in the nature of the electrophysiological signals during acquisition: an increase in negativity (N400) in the central electrodes is related to word-learning and development of a frontal positivity (P2) is related to rule-learning. In addition, the results of an online implicit and a post-learning test indicate that, once the rules of the language have been acquired, new words following the rule are processed as words of the language. By contrast, new words violating the rule induce syntax-related electrophysiological responses when inserted online in the stream (an early frontal negativity followed by a late posterior positivity) and clear lexical effects when presented in isolation (N400 modulation). The present study provides direct evidence suggesting that the mechanisms to extract words and structural dependencies from continuous speech are functionally segregated. When these mechanisms are engaged, the electrophysiological marker associated with rule-learning appears very quickly, during the earliest phases of exposition to a new language.
Bunce, John P; Scott, Rose M
While recent studies suggest children can use cross-situational information to learn words, these studies involved minimal referential ambiguity, and the cross-situational evidence overwhelmingly favored a single referent for each word. Here we asked whether 2·5-year-olds could identify a noun's referent when the scene and cross-situational evidence were more ambiguous. Children saw four trials in which a novel word occurred with four novel objects; only one object consistently co-occurred with the word across trials. The frequency of distracter objects varied across conditions. When all distracter referents occurred only once (no-competition), children successfully identified the noun's referent. When a high-probability competitor referent occurred on three trials, children identified the target referent if the competitor was absent on the third trial (short-competition) but not if it was present until the fourth trial (long-competition). This suggests that although 2·5-year-olds' cross-situational learning scales up to more ambiguous scenes, it is disrupted by high-probability competitor referents.
Full Text Available The purpose of this study was to measure the effects of reading racetrack and flashcards when teaching phonics, sight words, and addition facts. The participants for the sight word and phonics portion of this study were two seven-year-old boys in the second grade. Both participants were diagnosed with a learning disability. The third participant was diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder by his pediatrician and with a learning disability and traumatic brain injury by his school’s multi-disciplinary team.. The dependent measures were corrects and errors when reading from a first grade level sight word list. Math facts were selected based on a 100 add fact test for the third participant. The study demonstrated that racetracks paired with the flashcard intervention improved the students’ number of corrects for each subject-matter area (phonics, sight words, and math facts. However, the results show that some students had more success with it than others. These outcomes clearly warrant further research.
Sandahl, L. J.; Cort, K. A.; Gordon, K. L.
Analysis of issues and lessons learned during the early stages of solid-state lighting market introduction in the U.S., which also summarizes early actions taken to avoid potential problems anticipated based on lessons learned from the market introduction of compact fluorescent lamps.
Saçkes, Mesut; Trundle, Kathy Cabe
This study investigated the predictive ability of an intentional learning model in the change of preservice early childhood teachers' conceptual understanding of lunar phases. Fifty-two preservice early childhood teachers who were enrolled in an early childhood science methods course participated in the study. Results indicated that the use of metacognitive strategies facilitated preservice early childhood teachers' use of deep-level cognitive strategies, which in turn promoted conceptual change. Also, preservice early childhood teachers with high motivational beliefs were more likely to use cognitive and metacognitive strategies. Thus, they were more likely to engage in conceptual change. The results provided evidence that the hypothesized model of intentional learning has a high predictive ability in explaining the change in preservice early childhood teachers' conceptual understandings from the pre to post-interviews. Implications for designing a science methods course for preservice early childhood teachers are provided.
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This article presents a word game named"Word Magic",which is effective and efficient inavoiding word forgetting & decaying as well as helping students to improve their abilities in spelling,word building and so on.The procedures and rules of the game are formulated together with the makingof the cards used in it.The advantages of the game are also expounded.
This paper has been commissioned by Arts Council Ireland to inform the development of a national strategy for early childhood arts in Ireland. The paper is based on contemporary thinking and knowledge of child psychology, early learning and development and childhood studies, in particular the theoretical principles and pedagogical approaches to early childhood art-based learning. It begins with an exploration of the concept of pedagogy. International research on the importance of effective pe...
González-Castro, Paloma; Cueli, Marisol; Areces, Débora; Rodríguez, Celestino; Sideridis, Georgios
Problem solving represents a salient deficit in students with mathematical learning difficulties (MLD) primarily caused by difficulties with informal and formal mathematical competencies. This study proposes a computerized intervention tool, the integrated dynamic representation (IDR), for enhancing the early learning of basic mathematical…
There is an ongoing debate as to whether the words in early presyntactic forms of human language had simple atomic meanings like modern words, or whether they were holophrastic. Simulations were conducted using an iterated learning model in which the agents were able to associate words with meanings, but in which they were not able to use syntactic rules to combine words into phrases or sentences. In some of these simulations words emerged that had neither holophrastic nor atomic meanings, demonstrating the possibility of protolanguages intermediate between these two extremes. Further simulations show how increases in cognitive or articulatory capacity would have produced changes in the type of words that was dominant in protolanguages. It is likely that at some point in time humans spoke a protolanguage in which most words had neither holophrastic nor atomic meanings.
This article provides an overview of recent literature and research on word classes, focusing in particular on typological approaches to word classification. The cross-linguistic classification of word class systems (or parts-of-speech systems) presented in this article is based on statements found...... – Adverb, because they have properties that are strongly associated with at least two of these four traditional word classes (e.g. Adjective and Adverb). Finally, this article discusses some of the ways in which word class distinctions interact with other grammatical domains, such as syntax and morphology....
Howard, Ian S; Messum, Piers
Words are made up of speech sounds. Almost all accounts of child speech development assume that children learn the pronunciation of first language (L1) speech sounds by imitation, most claiming that the child performs some kind of auditory matching to the elements of ambient speech. However, there is evidence to support an alternative account and we investigate the non-imitative child behavior and well-attested caregiver behavior that this account posits using Elija, a computational model of an infant. Through unsupervised active learning, Elija began by discovering motor patterns, which produced sounds. In separate interaction experiments, native speakers of English, French and German then played the role of his caregiver. In their first interactions with Elija, they were allowed to respond to his sounds if they felt this was natural. We analyzed the interactions through phonemic transcriptions of the caregivers' utterances and found that they interpreted his output within the framework of their native languages. Their form of response was almost always a reformulation of Elija's utterance into well-formed sounds of L1. Elija retained those motor patterns to which a caregiver responded and formed associations between his motor pattern and the response it provoked. Thus in a second phase of interaction, he was able to parse input utterances in terms of the caregiver responses he had heard previously, and respond using his associated motor patterns. This capacity enabled the caregivers to teach Elija to pronounce some simple words in their native languages, by his serial imitation of the words' component speech sounds. Overall, our results demonstrate that the natural responses and behaviors of human subjects to infant-like vocalizations can take a computational model from a biologically plausible initial state through to word pronunciation. This provides support for an alternative to current auditory matching hypotheses for how children learn to pronounce.
Ian S Howard
Full Text Available Words are made up of speech sounds. Almost all accounts of child speech development assume that children learn the pronunciation of first language (L1 speech sounds by imitation, most claiming that the child performs some kind of auditory matching to the elements of ambient speech. However, there is evidence to support an alternative account and we investigate the non-imitative child behavior and well-attested caregiver behavior that this account posits using Elija, a computational model of an infant. Through unsupervised active learning, Elija began by discovering motor patterns, which produced sounds. In separate interaction experiments, native speakers of English, French and German then played the role of his caregiver. In their first interactions with Elija, they were allowed to respond to his sounds if they felt this was natural. We analyzed the interactions through phonemic transcriptions of the caregivers' utterances and found that they interpreted his output within the framework of their native languages. Their form of response was almost always a reformulation of Elija's utterance into well-formed sounds of L1. Elija retained those motor patterns to which a caregiver responded and formed associations between his motor pattern and the response it provoked. Thus in a second phase of interaction, he was able to parse input utterances in terms of the caregiver responses he had heard previously, and respond using his associated motor patterns. This capacity enabled the caregivers to teach Elija to pronounce some simple words in their native languages, by his serial imitation of the words' component speech sounds. Overall, our results demonstrate that the natural responses and behaviors of human subjects to infant-like vocalizations can take a computational model from a biologically plausible initial state through to word pronunciation. This provides support for an alternative to current auditory matching hypotheses for how children learn to
While research on early simultaneous bilingual acquisition is well-documented, studies on multiple language acquisition in early childhood are still needed. Existing studies have mainly focused on early simultaneous acquisition of three or more languages. Some attention has already been paid to early pragmatic differentiation and cross-linguistic…
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Sandahl, Linda J.; Cort, Katherine A.; Gordon, Kelly L.
The purpose of this report is to document early challenges and lessons learned in the solid-state lighting (SSL) market development as part of the DOE’s SSL Program efforts to continually evaluate market progress in this area. This report summarizes early actions taken by DOE and others to avoid potential problems anticipated based on lessons learned from the market introduction of compact fluorescent lamps and identifies issues, challenges, and new lessons that have been learned in the early stages of the SSL market introduction. This study identifies and characterizes12 key lessons that have been distilled from DOE SSL program results.
Kan, Pui Fong
Children's ability to learn and retain new words is fundamental to their vocabulary development. This study examined word retention in children learning a home language (L1) from birth and a second language (L2) in preschool settings. Participants were presented with sixteen novel words in L1 and in L2 and were tested for retention after…
Farine, Damien R; Spencer, Karen A; Boogert, Neeltje J
Stress during early life can cause disease and cognitive impairment in humans and non-humans alike. However, stress and other environmental factors can also program developmental pathways. We investigate whether differential exposure to developmental stress can drive divergent social learning strategies between siblings. In many species, juveniles acquire essential foraging skills by copying others: they can copy peers (horizontal social learning), learn from their parents (vertical social learning), or learn from other adults (oblique social learning). However, whether juveniles' learning strategies are condition dependent largely remains a mystery. We found that juvenile zebra finches living in flocks socially learned novel foraging skills exclusively from adults. By experimentally manipulating developmental stress, we further show that social learning targets are phenotypically plastic. While control juveniles learned foraging skills from their parents, their siblings, exposed as nestlings to experimentally elevated stress hormone levels, learned exclusively from unrelated adults. Thus, early-life conditions triggered individuals to switch strategies from vertical to oblique social learning. This switch could arise from stress-induced differences in developmental rate, cognitive and physical state, or the use of stress as an environmental cue. Acquisition of alternative social learning strategies may impact juveniles' fit to their environment and ultimately change their developmental trajectories.
Dr. Carlo Ricci
Full Text Available In this paper I want to share how my now six-year-old daughter learned how to write her name, recognize numbers, read some words and draw. By doing so I hope to offer an alternative to a schooling-centered curriculum that would have us believe that the only way to learn these things is to have an expert train young people to do these things. Methodologically, this paper is a narrative. I also consider this paper to be a political piece of writing. For me writing politically in this paper means, in part, engaging the reader in a dialogue about, on the one hand, trusting and respecting young people’s right to learn what they want, when they want, how they want and, on the other hand, imposing an externally directed curriculum on them. I am arguing in favour of the former.
Piasta, Shayne B.; Logan, Jessica A. R.; Pelatti, Christina Yeager; Capps, Janet L.; Petrill, Stephen A.
Because recent initiatives highlight the need to better support preschool-aged children's math and science learning, the present study investigated the impact of professional development in these domains for early childhood educators. Sixty-five educators were randomly assigned to experience 10.5 days (64 hr) of training on math and science or on…
Sulpizio, Simone; Job, Remo
In four reading aloud experiments we investigated the operations occurring at the level of the phonological buffer by manipulating stress and phoneme information. In all experiments we adopted a masked priming paradigm with three-syllable Italian word targets. Experiments 1 and 2 tested the effect of pure segmental (e.g., fe%%%% - FEcola) and pure suprasegmental (CInema - FEcola) overlap, respectively. Experiments 3 and 4 tested the joint manipulation of segmental and suprasegmental information, by using prime-target pairs that shared the first syllable and did or did not share their stress pattern (e.g., FEgato - FEcola vs. feNIce - FEcola). The results showed that both segmental and suprasegmental primes affect reading at an abstract phonological level. Moreover, the joint manipulation of stress and phonemes showed an asymmetric pattern for different stress patterns, suggesting that the phonemic and the stress systems address the articulation planning through a process that starts as soon as the relevant information about the to-be-planned unit is active.
Full Text Available In four reading aloud experiments we investigated the operations occurring at the level of the phonological buffer by manipulating stress and phoneme information. In all experiments we adopted a masked priming paradigm with three-syllable Italian word targets. Experiments 1 and 2 tested the effect of pure segmental (e.g., fe%%%% – FEcola and pure suprasegmental (CInema – FEcola overlap, respectively. Experiments 3 and 4 tested the joint manipulation of segmental and suprasegmental information, by using prime-target pairs that shared the first syllable and did or did not share their stress pattern (e.g. FEgato – FEcola vs. feNIce – FEcola. The results showed that both segmental and suprasegmental primes affect reading at an abstract phonological level. Moreover, the joint manipulation of stress and phonemes showed an asymmetric pattern for different stress patterns, suggesting that the phonemic and the stress systems address the articulation planning through a process that starts as soon as the relevant information about the to-be-planned unit is active.
Ferré, Pilar; Ventura, David; Comesaña, Montserrat; Fraga, Isabel
A processing advantage for emotional words relative to neutral words has been widely demonstrated in the monolingual domain (e.g., Kuperman et al., 2014). It is also well-known that, in bilingual speakers who have a certain degree of proficiency in their second language, the effects of the affective content of words on cognition are not restricted to the native language (e.g., Ferré et al., 2010). The aim of the present study was to test whether this facilitatory effect can also be obtained during the very early stages of word acquisition. In the context of a novel word learning paradigm, participants were trained on a set of Basque words by associating them to their Spanish translations. Words' concreteness and affective valence were orthogonally manipulated. Immediately after the learning phase and 1 week later, participants were tested in a Basque go-no go lexical decision task as well as in a translation task in which they had to provide the Spanish translation of the Basque words. A similar pattern of results was found across tasks and sessions, revealing main effects of concreteness and emotional content as well as an interaction between both factors. Thus, the emotional content facilitated the acquisition of abstract, but not concrete words, in the new language, with a more reliable effect for negative words than for positive ones. The results are discussed in light of the embodied theoretical view of semantic representation proposed by Kousta et al. (2011).
Donato, Flavio; Chowdhury, Ananya; Lahr, Maria; Caroni, Pico
Brain networks can support learning by promoting acquisition of task-relevant information or by adhering to validated rules, but the mechanisms involved are poorly understood. Upon learning, local inhibitory parvalbumin (PV)-expressing Basket cell networks can switch to opposite configurations that either favor or interfere with further learning, but how this opposite plasticity is induced and relates to distinct learning requirements has remained unclear. Here, we show that PV Basket cells consist of hitherto unrecognized subpopulations, with distinct schedules of neurogenesis, input connectivities, output target neurons, and roles in learning. Plasticity of hippocampal early-born PV neurons was recruited in rule consolidation, whereas plasticity of late-born PV neurons was recruited in new information acquisition. This involved regulation of early-born neuron plasticity specifically through excitation, and of late-born neuron plasticity specifically through inhibition. Therefore, opposite learning requirements are implemented by distinct local networks involving PV Basket cell subpopulations specifically regulated through inhibition or excitation.
and interacts and communicates with other people; (2) meaningful activities pave the way for children’s learning; these are activities where the child’s motive aligns with the goal of the activity; and (3) learning is seen as a productive and creative activity characterised by imagination....
Full Text Available Past research has investigated how children use different sources of information such as social cues and word-learning heuristics to infer referential intents. The present research explored how children weigh and use some of these cues to make referential inferences. Specifically, we examined how switching between languages known (familiar or unknown (unfamiliar to a child would influence his or her choice of cue to interpret a novel label in a challenging disambiguation task, where a pointing cue was pitted against the mutual exclusivity (ME principle. Forty-eight 3-and 4-year-old English-Mandarin bilingual children listened to a story told either in English only (No-Switch, English and Mandarin (Familiar-Switch, English and Japanese (Unfamiliar-Switch, or English and English-sounding nonsense sentences (Nonsense-Switch. They were then asked to select an object (from a pair of familiar and novel objects after hearing a novel label paired with the speaker’s point at the familiar object, e.g., Can you give me the blicket? Results showed that children in the Familiar-Switch condition were more willing to relax ME to follow the speaker’s point to pick the familiar object than those in the Unfamiliar-Switch condition, who were more likely to pick the novel object. No significant differences were found between the other conditions. Further analyses revealed that children in the Unfamiliar-Switch condition looked at the speaker longer than children in the other conditions when the switch happened. Our findings suggest that children weigh speakers’ referential cues and word-learning heuristics differently in different language contexts while taking into account their communicative history with the speaker. There are important implications for general education and other learning efforts, such as designing learning games so that the history of credibility with the user is maintained and how learning may be best scaffolded in a helpful and trusting
Hung, Wan-Yu; Patrycia, Ferninda; Yow, W Q
Past research has investigated how children use different sources of information such as social cues and word-learning heuristics to infer referential intents. The present research explored how children weigh and use some of these cues to make referential inferences. Specifically, we examined how switching between languages known (familiar) or unknown (unfamiliar) to a child would influence his or her choice of cue to interpret a novel label in a challenging disambiguation task, where a pointing cue was pitted against the mutual exclusivity (ME) principle. Forty-eight 3-and 4-years-old English-Mandarin bilingual children listened to a story told either in English only (No-Switch), English and Mandarin (Familiar-Switch), English and Japanese (Unfamiliar-Switch), or English and English-sounding nonsense sentences (Nonsense-Switch). They were then asked to select an object (from a pair of familiar and novel objects) after hearing a novel label paired with the speaker's point at the familiar object, e.g., "Can you give me the blicket?" Results showed that children in the Familiar-Switch condition were more willing to relax ME to follow the speaker's point to pick the familiar object than those in the Unfamiliar-Switch condition, who were more likely to pick the novel object. No significant differences were found between the other conditions. Further analyses revealed that children in the Unfamiliar-Switch condition looked at the speaker longer than children in the other conditions when the switch happened. Our findings suggest that children weigh speakers' referential cues and word-learning heuristics differently in different language contexts while taking into account their communicative history with the speaker. There are important implications for general education and other learning efforts, such as designing learning games so that the history of credibility with the user is maintained and how learning may be best scaffolded in a helpful and trusting environment.
Mwalongo, Leopard Jacob
In China the English medium schools are now mushrooming and many parents send their children at very early age. These schools enroll children of pre-school to school age to learn through English as foreign language regardless of their proficiency in the first language. Therefore the study aims at examining the learning English language as a…
Gallagher, Peggy A.; Abbott-Shim, Martha; VandeWiele, Laura
This study describes the results of an evaluation of the Individualized Learning Intervention (ILI), a mentoring program for early childhood educators that is built upon adult self-directed learning experiences and the collaborative support of others. Sixteen Mentor and 16 Protege teachers in Head Start classrooms were selected for participation…
Cherrington, Sue; Thornton, Kate
Professional learning communities are receiving increasing attention within the schooling sector but empirical research into their development and use within early childhood education contexts is rare. This paper reports initial findings of an exploratory study into the development of professional learning communities in New Zealand's early…
Park, Mihi; Starr, Rebecca L.
Early bilingualism is thought to facilitate language learning [Klein, E. C. (1995). "Second versus third language acquisition: Is there a difference?" "Language Learning", 45(3), 419-466; Cromdal, J. (1999). "Childhood bilingualism and metalinguistic skills: Analysis and control in young Swedish-English bilinguals."…
Denham, Susanne A.; Bassett, Hideko; Mincic, Melissa; Kalb, Sara; Way, Erin; Wyatt, Todd; Segal, Yana
Examined how aspects of social-emotional learning (SEL)--specifically, emotion knowledge, emotional and social behaviors, social problem-solving, and self-regulation--clustered to typify groups of children who differ in terms of their motivation to learn, participation in the classroom, and other indices of early school adjustment and academic…
Thomas, Keith; McNaught, Carmel; Wong, Kin-Chi; Li, Yi-Ching
This paper discusses early-career academics' development at a university in Hong Kong. Reflecting the impact of local context, the paper explores cultural and structural influences that can impinge on teaching and learning strategies for new academics. Barriers such as student learning behaviour and publication pressure may discourage new…
Kadir, Abdul; Ardi, Muhammad; Nurhayati, B.; Dirawan, Gufran Darma
The objective of this study was to examine the relationship of formative tests to early learning ability of students in the science learning style. This research used an experimental method with a 2 x 2 factorial design. The participants comprised all the students in class VII of the Islamic Junior High School State of Kolaka, a total of 343…
Boulton-Lewis, Gillian; Brownlee, Joanne; Walker, Sue; Cobb-Moore, Charlotte; Johansson, Eva
The intention of the analysis in this paper was to determine, from interviews with 11 early years' teachers, what informed their knowledge of children's learning and teaching strategies regarding moral development. Overall, the analysis revealed four main categories: definitions of moral behaviour, understanding of children's learning, pedagogy…
Ruge, Hannes; Krebs, Ruth M; Wolfensteller, Uta
Acquiring knowledge about the relationship between stimulus conditions, one's own actions, and the resulting consequences or effects, is one prerequisite for intentional action. Previous studies have shown that such contextualized associations between actions and their effects (S-R-E associations) can be picked up very quickly. The present study examined how such weakly practiced associations might affect overt behavior during the process of initial learning and during subsequent retrieval, and how these two measures are inter-related. We examined incidental (S-)R-E learning in the context of trial-and-error S-R learning and in the context of instruction-based S-R learning. Furthermore, as a control condition, common outcome (CO) learning blocks were included in which all responses produced one common sound effect, hence precluding differential (S-)R-E learning. Post-learning retrieval of R-E associations was tested by re-using previously produced sound effects as novel imperative stimuli combined with actions that were either compatible or incompatible with the previously encountered R-E mapping. The central result was that the size of the compatibility effect could be predicted by the size of relative response slowing during ongoing learning in the preceding acquisition phase, both in trial-and-error learning and in instruction-based learning. Importantly, this correlation was absent for the CO control condition, precluding accounts based on unspecific factors. Instead, the results suggest that differential outcomes are "actively" integrated into action planning and that this takes additional planning time. We speculate that this might be especially true for weakly practiced (S-)R-E associations before an initial goal-directed action mode transitions into a more stimulus-based action mode.
Full Text Available Acquiring knowledge about the relationship between stimulus conditions, one’s own actions, and the resulting consequences or effects, is one prerequisite for intentional action. Previous studies have shown that such contextualized associations between actions and their effects (S-R-E associations can be picked up very quickly. The present study examined how such weakly practiced associations might affect overt behavior during the process of initial learning and during subsequent retrieval, and how these two measures are inter-related. We examined incidental (S-R-E learning in the context of trial-and-error S-R learning and in the context of instruction-based S-R learning. Furthermore, as a control condition, common outcome (CO learning blocks were included in which all responses produced one common sound effect, hence precluding differential (S-R-E learning. Post-learning retrieval of R-E associations was tested by re-using previously produced sound effects as novel imperative stimuli combined with actions that were either compatible or incompatible with the previously encountered R-E mapping. The central result was that the size of the compatibility effect could be predicted by the size of relative response slowing during ongoing learning in the preceding acquisition phase, both in trial-and-error learning and in instruction-based learning. Importantly, this correlation was absent for the common outcome control condition, precluding accounts based on unspecific factors. Instead, the results suggest that differential outcomes are ‘actively’ integrated into action planning and that this takes additional planning time. We speculate that this might be especially true for weakly practiced (S-R-E associations before an initial goal-directed action mode transitions into a more stimulus-based action mode.
Rishøj, Christian; Søgaard, Anders
Unsupervised word clustering algorithms — which form word clusters based on a measure of distributional similarity — have proven to be useful in providing beneficial features for various natural language processing tasks involving supervised learning. This work explores the utility of such word c....... While such an “oracle” method is not identified, evaluations indicate that unsupervised word cluster are most beneficial in sentences without unknown words....
Ruediger, Sarah; Spirig, Dominique; Donato, Flavio; Caroni, Pico
Most behavioral learning in biology is trial and error, but how these learning processes are influenced by individual brain systems is poorly understood. Here we show that ventral-to-dorsal hippocampal subdivisions have specific and sequential functions in trial-and-error maze navigation, with ventral hippocampus (vH) mediating early task-specific goal-oriented searching. Although performance and strategy deployment progressed continuously at the population level, individual mice showed discrete learning phases, each characterized by particular search habits. Transitions in learning phases reflected feedforward inhibitory connectivity (FFI) growth occurring sequentially in ventral, then intermediate, then dorsal hippocampal subdivisions. FFI growth at vH occurred abruptly upon behavioral learning of goal-task relationships. vH lesions or the absence of vH FFI growth delayed early learning and disrupted performance consistency. Intermediate hippocampus lesions impaired intermediate place learning, whereas dorsal hippocampus lesions specifically disrupted late spatial learning. Trial-and-error navigational learning processes in naive mice thus involve a stereotype sequence of increasingly precise subtasks learned through distinct hippocampal subdivisions. Because of its unique connectivity, vH may relate specific goals to internal states in learning under healthy and pathological conditions.
Schaeffer, Moritz; Dragsted, Barbara; Hvelplund, Kristian Tangsgaard
This study reports on an investigation into the relationship between the number of translation alternatives for a single word and eye movements on the source text. In addition, the effect of word order differences between source and target text on eye movements on the source text is studied...... language activation during source text reading in translation, i.e. co-activation of the two linguistic systems, employed late eye movement measures or reaction times. The current study therefore aims to investigate if and to what extent earlier eye movement measures in reading for translation show...... evidence of co-activation. Results show that the number of translation alternatives for a single word and differences between source and target text in terms of word order have an effect on very early and late eye movement measures. Results are interpreted in terms of semantic and structural cross...
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Ikegami, Kiiko; Agbenyega, Joseph Seyram
The quality of early childhood education has dominated current debates in the ways educators develop and implement learning programs for children yet conceptions of quality vary contextually and culturally. This qualitative case study explored the insider perspectives of six early childhood educators in Sapporo, Japan regarding their conceptions…
Moreno, Jessica Perez; Malagarriga i Rovira, Teresa
A description of a listening activity for "Children's Song," a piece by Chick Corea, is introduced and developed. The use of materials and strategies for music making in early childhood settings was developed as a result of a teacher training and consultancy program implemented in a network of early learning centers in Spain. The main…
Brust, V.; Krüger, O.; Naguib, M.; Krause, E.T.
Long-term effects of early developmental conditions on physiological and behavioural traits are commonin animals. Yet, such lifelong effects of early life conditions on learning skills received relatively lessattention, even though they are expected to have strong fitness effects. To test the lifelo
Ladele, Omolola; Ormond, Christine; Hackling, Mark
Teachers' knowledge of the early algebra content that is to be taught is crucial for effective pedagogy and ensuring that the students' understanding of early algebra is not flawed. This article reports the findings of two of the activities that a group of in-service teachers participated in during a professional learning intervention program that…
Anders, Yvonne; Rossbach, Hans-Gunther; Weinert, Sabine; Ebert, Susanne; Kuger, Susanne; Lehrl, Simone; von Maurice, Jutta
This study examined the influence of the quality of home and preschool learning environments on the development of early numeracy skills in Germany, drawing on a sample of 532 children in 97 preschools. Latent growth curve models were used to investigate early numeracy skills and their development from the first (average age: 3 years) to the third…
Moreno, Jessica Perez; Malagarriga i Rovira, Teresa
A description of a listening activity for "Children's Song," a piece by Chick Corea, is introduced and developed. The use of materials and strategies for music making in early childhood settings was developed as a result of a teacher training and consultancy program implemented in a network of early learning centers in Spain. The main lines of…
Ikegami, Kiiko; Agbenyega, Joseph Seyram
The quality of early childhood education has dominated current debates in the ways educators develop and implement learning programs for children yet conceptions of quality vary contextually and culturally. This qualitative case study explored the insider perspectives of six early childhood educators in Sapporo, Japan regarding their conceptions…
Namy, L L; Waxman, S R
In 3 experiments, we examine the relation between language acquisition and other symbolic abilities in the early stages of language acquisition. We introduce 18- and 26-month-olds to object categories (e.g., fruit, vehicles) using a novel word or a novel symbolic gesture to name the objects. We compare the influence of these two symbolic forms on infants' object categorization. Children at both ages interpreted novel words as names for object categories. However, infants' interpretations of gestures changed over development. At 18 months, infants spontaneously interpreted gestures, like words, as names for object categories; at 26 months, infants spontaneously interpreted words but not gestures as names. The older infants succeeded in interpreting novel gestures as names only when given additional practice with the gestural medium. This clear developmental pattern supports the prediction that an initial general ability to learn symbols (both words and gestures) develops into a more focused tendency to use words as the predominant symbolic form.