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Sample records for underlie word learning

  1. Learning words

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jaswal, Vikram K.; Hansen, Mikkel

    2006-01-01

    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...... process about what the speaker intended? In two studies, we distinguish between these possibilities. Preschoolers watched as a speaker pointed toward (Study 1) or looked at (Study 2) a familiar object while requesting the referent for a new word (e.g. 'Can you give me the blicket?'). In both studies......, despite the speaker's unambiguous behavioral cue indicating an intent to refer to a familiar object, children inferred that the novel label referred to an unfamiliar object. These results suggest that children expect words to be mutually exclusive even when a speaker provides some kinds of pragmatic...

  2. Number words, quantifiers, and principles of word learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sullivan, Jessica; Barner, David

    2011-11-01

    How do children learn the meanings of words like many and five? Although much is known about the mechanisms that underlie children's acquisition of nouns and verbs, considerably less is understood of how children begin to learn the meanings of words that refer to sets (e.g., number words and quantifiers). Here we argue that children's acquisition of quantity expressions relies on learning mechanisms typically associated with learning content words. In particular, we argue that the Whole Object Assumption and the Principle of Contrast are special cases of more general principles that guide not just the acquisition of nouns and verbs, but also the acquisition and interpretation of number words and quantifiers. WIREs Cogni Sci 2011 2 639-645 DOI: 10.1002/wcs.140 For further resources related to this article, please visit the WIREs website. Copyright © 2011 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  3. Learning Word Sense Embeddings from Word Sense Definitions

    OpenAIRE

    Li, Qi; Li, Tianshi; Chang, Baobao

    2016-01-01

    Word embeddings play a significant role in many modern NLP systems. Since learning one representation per word is problematic for polysemous words and homonymous words, researchers propose to use one embedding per word sense. Their approaches mainly train word sense embeddings on a corpus. In this paper, we propose to use word sense definitions to learn one embedding per word sense. Experimental results on word similarity tasks and a word sense disambiguation task show that word sense embeddi...

  4. Grounding word learning in space.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  5. Word Learning Deficits in Children with Dyslexia

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    Alt, Mary; Hogan, Tiffany; Green, Samuel; Gray, Shelley; Cabbage, Kathryn; Cowan, Nelson

    2017-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of this study is to investigate word learning in children with dyslexia to ascertain their strengths and weaknesses during the configuration stage of word learning. Method: Children with typical development (N = 116) and dyslexia (N = 68) participated in computer-based word learning games that assessed word learning in 4 sets…

  6. The Effects of Learning from Word Pairs on Word Knowledge

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shamsudin Sarimah

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Vocabulary plays an essential role in language learning. The lack of vocabulary might cause incompetency to language users. It is therefore very important for language instructors to find suitable ways of teaching vocabulary since learning vocabulary consists of learning various aspects of word knowledge. These aspects include orthography, meaning and form, collocation, association and grammatical functions. There are various methods that could be used in gaining aspects of word knowledge. The purpose of this study is to investigate to what extent are aspects of word knowledge gained by learning from word pairs. 120 secondary school students were divided into four groups of thirty students. The first group was given a set of Malay Translation, the second, English Translation, the third, Malay Definition and the fourth, English Definition word pair to learn followed by word knowledge tests. The results show that all word pairs promote large gains in learning aspects of word knowledge. The scores between the groups were also compared and it was found that the mean score of the Malay Definition word pair group is the highest, followed by the Malay Translation word pair group, the English Translation word pair group, and English Definition word pair group.

  7. Words can slow down category learning.

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    Brojde, Chandra L; Porter, Chelsea; Colunga, Eliana

    2011-08-01

    Words have been shown to influence many cognitive tasks, including category learning. Most demonstrations of these effects have focused on instances in which words facilitate performance. One possibility is that words augment representations, predicting an across the-board benefit of words during category learning. We propose that words shift attention to dimensions that have been historically predictive in similar contexts. Under this account, there should be cases in which words are detrimental to performance. The results from two experiments show that words impair learning of object categories under some conditions. Experiment 1 shows that words hurt performance when learning to categorize by texture. Experiment 2 shows that words also hurt when learning to categorize by brightness, leading to selectively attending to shape when both shape and hue could be used to correctly categorize stimuli. We suggest that both the positive and negative effects of words have developmental origins in the history of word usage while learning categories. [corrected

  8. Learning Words through Multimedia Application

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zhang, Chun

    2007-01-01

      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...

  9. Positive and negative emotions underlie motivation for L2 learning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter D. MacIntyre

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available The role of basic emotions in SLA has been underestimated in both research and pedagogy. The present article examines 10 positive emotions (joy, gratitude, serenity, interest, hope, pride, amusement, inspiration, awe, and love and 9 negative emotions (anger, contempt, disgust, embarrassment, guilt, hate, sadness, feeling scared, and being stressed. The emotions are correlated with core variables chosen from three well-known models of L2 motivation: Gardner’s integrative motive, Clément’s social-contextual model, and Dörnyei’s L2 self system. Respondents came from Italian secondary schools, and most participants were from monolingual Italian speaking homes. They described their motivation and emotion with respect to learning German in a region of Italy (South Tyrol that features high levels of contact between Italians and Germans. Results show that positive emotions are consistently and strongly correlated with motivation-related variables. Correlations involving negative emotions are weaker and less consistently implicated in motivation. The positivity ratio, that is, the relative prevalence of positive over negative emotion, showed strong correlations with all of the motivation constructs. Regression analysis supports the conclusion that a variety of emotions, not just one or two key ones, are implicated in L2 motivation processes in this high-contact context.

  10. Word learning: An ERP investigation of word experience effects on recognition and word processing

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Balass, M.; Perfetti, C.A.; Nelson, J.R.

    2010-01-01

    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

  11. Visual attention is not enough: Individual differences in statistical word-referent learning in infants.

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    Smith, Linda B; Yu, Chen

    2013-01-01

    Recent evidence shows that infants can learn words and referents by aggregating ambiguous information across situations to discern the underlying word-referent mappings. Here, we use an individual difference approach to understand the role of different kinds of attentional processes in this learning: 12-and 14-month-old infants participated in a cross-situational word-referent learning task in which the learning trials were ordered to create local novelty effects, effects that should not alter the statistical evidence for the underlying correspondences. The main dependent measures were derived from frame-by-frame analyses of eye gaze direction. The fine- grained dynamics of looking behavior implicates different attentional processes that may compete with or support statistical learning. The discussion considers the role of attention in binding heard words to seen objects, individual differences in attention and vocabulary development, and the relation between macro-level theories of word learning and the micro-level dynamic processes that underlie learning.

  12. Neural regions that underlie reinforcement learning are also active for social expectancy violations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harris, Lasana T; Fiske, Susan T

    2010-01-01

    Prediction error, the difference between an expected and an actual outcome, serves as a learning signal that interacts with reward and punishment value to direct future behavior during reinforcement learning. We hypothesized that similar learning and valuation signals may underlie social expectancy violations. Here, we explore the neural correlates of social expectancy violation signals along the universal person-perception dimensions trait warmth and competence. In this context, social learning may result from expectancy violations that occur when a target is inconsistent with an a priori schema. Expectancy violation may activate neural regions normally implicated in prediction error and valuation during appetitive and aversive conditioning. Using fMRI, we first gave perceivers high warmth or competence behavioral information that led to dispositional or situational attributions for the behavior. Participants then saw pictures of people responsible for the behavior; they represented social groups either inconsistent (rated low on either warmth or competence) or consistent (rated high on either warmth or competence) with the behavior information. Warmth and competence expectancy violations activate striatal regions that represent evaluative and prediction error signals. Social cognition regions underlie consistent expectations. These findings suggest that regions underlying reinforcement learning may work in concert with social cognition regions in warmth and competence social expectancy. This study illustrates the neural overlap between neuroeconomics and social neuroscience.

  13. Noise Hampers Children's Expressive Word Learning

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    Riley, Kristine Grohne; McGregor, Karla K.

    2012-01-01

    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…

  14. Word Learning Deficits in Children With Dyslexia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alt, Mary; Hogan, Tiffany; Green, Samuel; Gray, Shelley; Cabbage, Kathryn; Cowan, Nelson

    2017-04-14

    The purpose of this study is to investigate word learning in children with dyslexia to ascertain their strengths and weaknesses during the configuration stage of word learning. Children with typical development (N = 116) and dyslexia (N = 68) participated in computer-based word learning games that assessed word learning in 4 sets of games that manipulated phonological or visuospatial demands. All children were monolingual English-speaking 2nd graders without oral language impairment. The word learning games measured children's ability to link novel names with novel objects, to make decisions about the accuracy of those names and objects, to recognize the semantic features of the objects, and to produce the names of the novel words. Accuracy data were analyzed using analyses of covariance with nonverbal intelligence scores as a covariate. Word learning deficits were evident for children with dyslexia across every type of manipulation and on 3 of 5 tasks, but not for every combination of task/manipulation. Deficits were more common when task demands taxed phonology. Visuospatial manipulations led to both disadvantages and advantages for children with dyslexia. Children with dyslexia evidence spoken word learning deficits, but their performance is highly dependent on manipulations and task demand, suggesting a processing trade-off between visuospatial and phonological demands.

  15. Quantitative learning strategies based on word networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Yue-Tian-Yi; Jia, Zi-Yang; Tang, Yong; Xiong, Jason Jie; Zhang, Yi-Cheng

    2018-02-01

    Learning English requires a considerable effort, but the way that vocabulary is introduced in textbooks is not optimized for learning efficiency. With the increasing population of English learners, learning process optimization will have significant impact and improvement towards English learning and teaching. The recent developments of big data analysis and complex network science provide additional opportunities to design and further investigate the strategies in English learning. In this paper, quantitative English learning strategies based on word network and word usage information are proposed. The strategies integrate the words frequency with topological structural information. By analyzing the influence of connected learned words, the learning weights for the unlearned words and dynamically updating of the network are studied and analyzed. The results suggest that quantitative strategies significantly improve learning efficiency while maintaining effectiveness. Especially, the optimized-weight-first strategy and segmented strategies outperform other strategies. The results provide opportunities for researchers and practitioners to reconsider the way of English teaching and designing vocabularies quantitatively by balancing the efficiency and learning costs based on the word network.

  16. Vowel bias in Danish word-learning

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Højen, Anders; Nazzi, Thierry

    2016-01-01

    one or two phonological features. Danish was chosen because it has more vowels than consonants, and is characterized by extensive consonant lenition. Both phenomena could disfavor a consonant bias. Evidence of word-learning was found only for vocalic information, irrespective of whether one or two......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 the language in acquisition. To do so, we used the interactive word-learning task set up by Havy and Nazzi (2009), teaching Danish-learning 20-month-olds pairs of phonetically similar words that contrasted either on one of their consonants or one of their vowels, by either...

  17. Word learning in children with vocabulary deficits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nash, Marysia; Donaldson, Morag L

    2005-04-01

    Word learning in 16 children with specific language impairment (SLI) was compared with that of chronological-age controls (CAC) and vocabulary-age controls (VAC), to examine the extent and nature of word-learning deficits in the children with SLI. The children were exposed to novel words in a story and an explicit teaching context. Five tasks assessed how much the children had learned about the words' phonological form and semantic properties after 6 repetitions (Time 1) and again after 12 repetitions (Time 2) of the words in each context. The SLI group performed significantly worse than the CAC group at both Time 1 and Time 2 on all measures of the words presented in both contexts. They performed similarly to the VAC group (who were on average 21/2 years younger) on Time 1 and Time 2 measures from both contexts, except for the Naming task at Time 2, on which their performance was significantly lower. These findings suggest that children with vocabulary deficits have difficulties with both phonological and semantic aspects of word learning.

  18. Social interaction facilitates word learning in preverbal infants: Word-object mapping and word segmentation.

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    Hakuno, Yoko; Omori, Takahide; Yamamoto, Jun-Ichi; Minagawa, Yasuyo

    2017-08-01

    In natural settings, infants learn spoken language with the aid of a caregiver who explicitly provides social signals. Although previous studies have demonstrated that young infants are sensitive to these signals that facilitate language development, the impact of real-life interactions on early word segmentation and word-object mapping remains elusive. We tested whether infants aged 5-6 months and 9-10 months could segment a word from continuous speech and acquire a word-object relation in an ecologically valid setting. In Experiment 1, infants were exposed to a live tutor, while in Experiment 2, another group of infants were exposed to a televised tutor. Results indicate that both younger and older infants were capable of segmenting a word and learning a word-object association only when the stimuli were derived from a live tutor in a natural manner, suggesting that real-life interaction enhances the learning of spoken words in preverbal infants. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. The Role of Emotion in Word Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doan, S. N.

    2010-01-01

    The way in which emotion interacts with cognition has been of great interest to researchers for hundreds of years. Emotion has been shown to play an important role in attention, learning and memory. However, the way in which emotion influences the basic process of word learning in infancy has largely been ignored. In the current paper, the…

  20. Category learning in the color-word contingency learning paradigm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmidt, James R; Augustinova, Maria; De Houwer, Jan

    2018-02-05

    In the typical color-word contingency learning paradigm, participants respond to the print color of words where each word is presented most often in one color. Learning is indicated by faster and more accurate responses when a word is presented in its usual color, relative to another color. To eliminate the possibility that this effect is driven exclusively by the familiarity of item-specific word-color pairings, we examine whether contingency learning effects can be observed also when colors are related to categories of words rather than to individual words. To this end, the reported experiments used three categories of words (animals, verbs, and professions) that were each predictive of one color. Importantly, each individual word was presented only once, thus eliminating individual color-word contingencies. Nevertheless, for the first time, a category-based contingency effect was observed, with faster and more accurate responses when a category item was presented in the color in which most of the other items of that category were presented. This finding helps to constrain episodic learning models and sets the stage for new research on category-based contingency learning.

  1. Prior Pronunciation Knowledge Bootstraps Word Learning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Khia Anne Johnson

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Learners often struggle with L2 sounds, yet little is known about the role of prior pronunciation knowledge and explicit articulatory training in language acquisition. This study asks if existing pronunciation knowledge can bootstrap word learning, and whether short-term audiovisual articulatory training for tongue position with and without a production component has an effect on lexical retention. Participants were trained and tested on stimuli with perceptually salient segments that are challenging to produce. Results indicate that pronunciation knowledge plays an important role in word learning. While much about the extent and shape of this role remains unclear, this study sheds light in three main areas. First, prior pronunciation knowledge leads to increased accuracy in word learning, as all groups trended toward lower accuracy on pseudowords with two novel segments, when compared with those with one or none. Second, all training and control conditions followed similar patterns, with training neither aiding nor inhibiting retention; this is a noteworthy result as previous work has found that the inclusion of production in training leads to decreased performance when testing for retention. Finally, higher production accuracy during practice led to higher retention after the word-learning task, indicating that individual differences and successful training are potentially important indicators of retention. This study provides support for the claim that pronunciation matters in L2 word learning.

  2. Phonetic Processing When Learning Words

    Science.gov (United States)

    Havy, Mélanie; Bouchon, Camillia; Nazzi, Thierry

    2016-01-01

    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…

  3. Learning word meanings: Overnight integration and study modality effects

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ven, F. van der; Takashima, A.; Segers, P.C.J.; Verhoeven, L.T.W.

    2015-01-01

    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

  4. Learning during processing Word learning doesn’t wait for word recognition to finish

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    Apfelbaum, Keith S.; McMurray, Bob

    2017-01-01

    Previous research on associative learning has uncovered detailed aspects of the process, including what types of things are learned, how they are learned, and where in the brain such learning occurs. However, perceptual processes, such as stimulus recognition and identification, take time to unfold. Previous studies of learning have not addressed when, during the course of these dynamic recognition processes, learned representations are formed and updated. If learned representations are formed and updated while recognition is ongoing, the result of learning may incorporate spurious, partial information. For example, during word recognition, words take time to be identified, and competing words are often active in parallel. If learning proceeds before this competition resolves, representations may be influenced by the preliminary activations present at the time of learning. In three experiments using word learning as a model domain, we provide evidence that learning reflects the ongoing dynamics of auditory and visual processing during a learning event. These results show that learning can occur before stimulus recognition processes are complete; learning does not wait for ongoing perceptual processing to complete. PMID:27471082

  5. Flexibility in Bilingual Infants' Word Learning

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    Graf Estes, Katharine; Hay, Jessica F.

    2015-01-01

    The present experiments tested bilingual infants' developmental narrowing for the interpretation of sounds that form words. These studies addressed how language specialization proceeds when the environment provides varied and divergent input. Experiment 1 (N = 32) demonstrated that bilingual 14- and 19-month-olds learned a pair of object labels…

  6. Does Hearing Several Speakers Reduce Foreign Word Learning?

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    Ludington, Jason Darryl

    2016-01-01

    Learning spoken word forms is a vital part of second language learning, and CALL lends itself well to this training. Not enough is known, however, about how auditory variation across speech tokens may affect receptive word learning. To find out, 144 Thai university students with no knowledge of the Patani Malay language learned 24 foreign words in…

  7. Visual word learning in adults with dyslexia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rosa Kit Wan Kwok

    2014-05-01

    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.

  8. A Bidirectional Relationship between Conceptual Organization and Word Learning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tanya Kaefer

    2013-01-01

    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.

  9. Novel word acquisition in aphasia: Facing the word-referent ambiguity of natural language learning contexts.

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    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

    2016-06-01

    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

  10. Fourteen-Month-Old Infants Learn Similar-Sounding Words

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    Yoshida, Katherine A.; Fennell, Christopher T.; Swingley, Daniel; Werker, Janet F.

    2009-01-01

    Can infants, in the very first stages of word learning, use their perceptual sensitivity to the phonetics of speech while learning words? Research to date suggests that infants of 14 months cannot learn two similar-sounding words unless there is substantial contextual support. The current experiment advances our understanding of this failure by…

  11. Competition between multiple words for a referent in cross-situational word learning

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    Benitez, Viridiana L.; Yurovsky, Daniel; Smith, Linda B.

    2016-01-01

    Three experiments investigated competition between word-object pairings in a cross-situational word-learning paradigm. Adults were presented with One-Word pairings, where a single word labeled a single object, and Two-Word pairings, where two words labeled a single object. In addition to measuring learning of these two pairing types, we measured competition between words that refer to the same object. When the word-object co-occurrences were presented intermixed in training (Experiment 1), we found evidence for direct competition between words that label the same referent. Separating the two words for an object in time eliminated any evidence for this competition (Experiment 2). Experiment 3 demonstrated that adding a linguistic cue to the second label for a referent led to different competition effects between adults who self-reported different language learning histories, suggesting both distinctiveness and language learning history affect competition. Finally, in all experiments, competition effects were unrelated to participants’ explicit judgments of learning, suggesting that competition reflects the operating characteristics of implicit learning processes. Together, these results demonstrate that the role of competition between overlapping associations in statistical word-referent learning depends on time, the distinctiveness of word-object pairings, and language learning history. PMID:27087742

  12. Learning by playing, animating words and images

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Carpe Pérez, Inmaculada Concepción; Pedersen, Hanne

    2015-01-01

    . 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......? Visual narrative is a "language" as valid as writing or speaking. Sometimes, a more valuable tool when there's an impediment to use verbal communication. Animation is a feeling and visual thinking media which allows us to "translate" words into images, sentences into stories and scripts into movies...... and institutions, are already promoting and practicing animation as a learning tool. We want to expose and share its effectiveness, which helps to shape creative, emotional and thoughtful minds. Some of the newest studies in the European Community, such as, EMEDEUS, European Media Literacy Education, Pilot study...

  13. Dynamic Influence of Emotional States on Novel Word Learning

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    Guo, Jingjing; Zou, Tiantian; Peng, Danling

    2018-01-01

    Many researchers realize that it's unrealistic to isolate language learning and processing from emotions. However, few studies on language learning have taken emotions into consideration so far, so that the probable influences of emotions on language learning are unclear. The current study thereby aimed to examine the effects of emotional states on novel word learning and their dynamic changes with learning continuing and task varying. Positive, negative or neutral pictures were employed to induce a given emotional state, and then participants learned the novel words through association with line-drawing pictures in four successive learning phases. At the end of each learning phase, participants were instructed to fulfill a semantic category judgment task (in Experiment 1) or a word-picture semantic consistency judgment task (in Experiment 2) to explore the effects of emotional states on different depths of word learning. Converging results demonstrated that negative emotional state led to worse performance compared with neutral condition; however, how positive emotional state affected learning varied with learning task. Specifically, a facilitative role of positive emotional state in semantic category learning was observed but disappeared in word specific meaning learning. Moreover, the emotional modulation on novel word learning was quite dynamic and changeable with learning continuing, and the final attainment of the learned words tended to be similar under different emotional states. The findings suggest that the impact of emotion can be offset when novel words became more and more familiar and a part of existent lexicon. PMID:29695994

  14. Influence of Syllable Structure on L2 Auditory Word Learning

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    Hamada, Megumi; Goya, Hideki

    2015-01-01

    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…

  15. Measuring Explicit Word Learning of Preschool Children: A Development Study.

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    Kelley, Elizabeth Spencer

    2017-08-15

    The purpose of this article is to present preliminary results related to the development of a new measure of explicit word learning. The measure incorporated elements of explicit vocabulary instruction and dynamic assessment and was designed to be sensitive to differences in word learning skill and to be feasible for use in clinical settings. The explicit word learning measure included brief teaching trials and repeated fine-grained measurement of semantic knowledge and production of 3 novel words (2 verbs and 1 adjective). Preschool children (N = 23) completed the measure of explicit word learning; standardized, norm-referenced measures of expressive and receptive vocabulary; and an incidental word learning task. The measure of explicit word learning provided meaningful information about word learning. Performance on the explicit measure was related to existing vocabulary knowledge and incidental word learning. Findings from this development study indicate that further examination of the measure of explicit word learning is warranted. The measure may have the potential to identify children who are poor word learners. https://doi.org/10.23641/asha.5170738.

  16. Goodnight book: sleep consolidation improves word learning via storybooks

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    Williams, Sophie E.; Horst, Jessica S.

    2014-01-01

    Reading the same storybooks repeatedly helps preschool children learn words. In addition, sleeping shortly after learning also facilitates memory consolidation and aids learning in older children and adults. The current study explored how sleep promotes word learning in preschool children using a shared storybook reading task. Children were either read the same story repeatedly or different stories and either napped after the stories or remained awake. Children's word retention were tested 2.5 h later, 24 h later, and 7 days later. Results demonstrate strong, persistent effects for both repeated readings and sleep consolidation on young children's word learning. A key finding is that children who read different stories before napping learned words as well as children who had the advantage of hearing the same story. In contrast, children who read different stories and remained awake never caught up to their peers on later word learning tests. Implications for educational practices are discussed. PMID:24624111

  17. Goodnight Book: Sleep Consolidation Improves Word Learning via Storybooks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sophie E. Williams

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Reading the same storybooks repeatedly helps preschool children learn words. In addition, sleeping shortly after learning also facilitates memory consolidation and aids learning in older children and adults. The current study explored how sleep promotes word learning in preschool children using a shared storybook reading task. Children were either read the same story repeatedly or different stories and either napped after the stories or remained awake. Children’s word retention were tested 2.5 hours later, 24 hours later and 7 days later. Results demonstrate strong, persistent effects for both repeated readings and sleep consolidation on young children’s word learning. A key finding is that children who read different stories before napping learned words as well as children who had the advantage of hearing the same story. In contrast, children who read different stories and remained awake never caught up to their peers on later word learning tests. Implications for educational practices are discussed.

  18. Learning builds on learning: infants' use of native language sound patterns to learn words.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graf Estes, Katharine

    2014-10-01

    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. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Learning biases predict a word order universal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Culbertson, Jennifer; Smolensky, Paul; Legendre, Géraldine

    2012-03-01

    How recurrent typological patterns, or universals, emerge from the extensive diversity found across the world's languages constitutes a central question for linguistics and cognitive science. Recent challenges to a fundamental assumption of generative linguistics-that universal properties of the human language acquisition faculty constrain the types of grammatical systems which can occur-suggest the need for new types of empirical evidence connecting typology to biases of learners. Using an artificial language learning paradigm in which adult subjects are exposed to a mix of grammatical systems (similar to a period of linguistic change), we show that learners' biases mirror a word-order universal, first proposed by Joseph Greenberg, which constrains typological patterns of adjective, numeral, and noun ordering. We briefly summarize the results of a probabilistic model of the hypothesized biases and their effect on learning, and discuss the broader implications of the results for current theories of the origins of cross-linguistic word-order preferences. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  20. A Bidirectional Relationship between Conceptual Organization and Word Learning

    OpenAIRE

    Kaefer, Tanya; Neuman, Susan B.

    2013-01-01

    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 ...

  1. The role of reference in cross-situational word learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Felix Hao; Mintz, Toben H

    2018-01-01

    Word learning involves massive ambiguity, since in a particular encounter with a novel word, there are an unlimited number of potential referents. One proposal for how learners surmount the problem of ambiguity is that learners use cross-situational statistics to constrain the ambiguity: When a word and its referent co-occur across multiple situations, learners will associate the word with the correct referent. Yu and Smith (2007) propose that these co-occurrence statistics are sufficient for word-to-referent mapping. Alternative accounts hold that co-occurrence statistics alone are insufficient to support learning, and that learners are further guided by knowledge that words are referential (e.g., Waxman & Gelman, 2009). However, no behavioral word learning studies we are aware of explicitly manipulate subjects' prior assumptions about the role of the words in the experiments in order to test the influence of these assumptions. In this study, we directly test whether, when faced with referential ambiguity, co-occurrence statistics are sufficient for word-to-referent mappings in adult word-learners. Across a series of cross-situational learning experiments, we varied the degree to which there was support for the notion that the words were referential. At the same time, the statistical information about the words' meanings was held constant. When we overrode support for the notion that words were referential, subjects failed to learn the word-to-referent mappings, but otherwise they succeeded. Thus, cross-situational statistics were useful only when learners had the goal of discovering mappings between words and referents. We discuss the implications of these results for theories of word learning in children's language acquisition. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  2. Children value informativity over logic in word learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramscar, Michael; Dye, Melody; Klein, Joseph

    2013-06-01

    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.

  3. An associative account of the development of word learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sloutsky, Vladimir M; Yim, Hyungwook; Yao, Xin; Dennis, Simon

    2017-09-01

    Word learning is a notoriously difficult induction problem because meaning is underdetermined by positive examples. How do children solve this problem? Some have argued that word learning is achieved by means of inference: young word learners rely on a number of assumptions that reduce the overall hypothesis space by favoring some meanings over others. However, these approaches have difficulty explaining how words are learned from conversations or text, without pointing or explicit instruction. In this research, we propose an associative mechanism that can account for such learning. In a series of experiments, 4-year-olds and adults were presented with sets of words that included a single nonsense word (e.g. dax). Some lists were taxonomic (i.,e., all items were members of a given category), some were associative (i.e., all items were associates of a given category, but not members), and some were mixed. Participants were asked to indicate whether the nonsense word was an animal or an artifact. Adults exhibited evidence of learning when lists consisted of either associatively or taxonomically related items. In contrast, children exhibited evidence of word learning only when lists consisted of associatively related items. These results present challenges to several extant models of word learning, and a new model based on the distinction between syntagmatic and paradigmatic associations is proposed. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Dissociable neural representations of reinforcement and belief prediction errors underlie strategic learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Lusha; Mathewson, Kyle E; Hsu, Ming

    2012-01-31

    Decision-making in the presence of other competitive intelligent agents is fundamental for social and economic behavior. Such decisions require agents to behave strategically, where in addition to learning about the rewards and punishments available in the environment, they also need to anticipate and respond to actions of others competing for the same rewards. However, whereas we know much about strategic learning at both theoretical and behavioral levels, we know relatively little about the underlying neural mechanisms. Here, we show using a multi-strategy competitive learning paradigm that strategic choices can be characterized by extending the reinforcement learning (RL) framework to incorporate agents' beliefs about the actions of their opponents. Furthermore, using this characterization to generate putative internal values, we used model-based functional magnetic resonance imaging to investigate neural computations underlying strategic learning. We found that the distinct notions of prediction errors derived from our computational model are processed in a partially overlapping but distinct set of brain regions. Specifically, we found that the RL prediction error was correlated with activity in the ventral striatum. In contrast, activity in the ventral striatum, as well as the rostral anterior cingulate (rACC), was correlated with a previously uncharacterized belief-based prediction error. Furthermore, activity in rACC reflected individual differences in degree of engagement in belief learning. These results suggest a model of strategic behavior where learning arises from interaction of dissociable reinforcement and belief-based inputs.

  5. Third-Party Social Interaction and Word Learning from Video

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Doherty, Katherine; Troseth, Georgene L.; Shimpi, Priya M.; Goldenberg, Elizabeth; Akhtar, Nameera; Saylor, Megan M.

    2011-01-01

    In previous studies, very young children have learned words while "overhearing" a conversation, yet they have had trouble learning words from a person on video. In Study 1, 64 toddlers (mean age = 29.8 months) viewed an object-labeling demonstration in 1 of 4 conditions. In 2, the speaker (present or on video) directly addressed the child, and in…

  6. Infants can rapidly learn words in a foreign language.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bijeljac-Babic, Ranka; Nassurally, Khatijah; Havy, Mélanie; Nazzi, Thierry

    2009-12-01

    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.

  7. Oral Definitions of Newly Learned Words: An Error Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steele, Sara C.

    2012-01-01

    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…

  8. Direct and Indirect Cues to Knowledge States during Word Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saylor, Megan M.; Carroll, C. Brooke

    2009-01-01

    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…

  9. Contextual diversity facilitates learning new words in the classroom.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eva Rosa

    Full Text Available In the field of word recognition and reading, it is commonly assumed that frequently repeated words create more accessible memory traces than infrequently repeated words, thus capturing the word-frequency effect. Nevertheless, recent research has shown that a seemingly related factor, contextual diversity (defined as the number of different contexts [e.g., films] in which a word appears, is a better predictor than word-frequency in word recognition and sentence reading experiments. Recent research has shown that contextual diversity plays an important role when learning new words in a laboratory setting with adult readers. In the current experiment, we directly manipulated contextual diversity in a very ecological scenario: at school, when Grade 3 children were learning words in the classroom. The new words appeared in different contexts/topics (high-contextual diversity or only in one of them (low-contextual diversity. Results showed that words encountered in different contexts were learned and remembered more effectively than those presented in redundant contexts. We discuss the practical (educational [e.g., curriculum design] and theoretical (models of word recognition implications of these findings.

  10. The Distribution of Talker Variability Impacts Infants’ Word Learning

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    Carolyn Quam

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Infants struggle to apply earlier-demonstrated sound-discrimination abilities to later word learning, attending to non-constrastive acoustic dimensions (e.g., Hay et al., 2015, and not always to contrastive dimensions (e.g., Stager & Werker, 1997. One hint about the nature of infants’ difficulties comes from the observation that input from multiple talkers can improve word learning (Rost & McMurray, 2009. This may be because, when a single talker says both of the to-be-learned words, consistent talker’s-voice characteristics make the acoustics of the two words more overlapping (Apfelbaum & McMurray, 2011. Here, we test that notion. We taught 14-month-old infants two similar-sounding words in the Switch habituation paradigm. The same amount of overall talker variability was present as in prior multiple-talker experiments, but male and female talkers said different words, creating a gender-word correlation. Under an acoustic-similarity account, correlated talker gender should help to separate words acoustically and facilitate learning. Instead, we found that correlated talker gender impaired learning of word-object pairings compared with uncorrelated talker gender—even when gender-word pairings were always maintained in test—casting doubt on one account of the beneficial effects of talker variability. We discuss several alternate potential explanations for this effect.

  11. Fourteen-month-old infants learn similar sounding words

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoshida, Katherine A.; Fennell, Christopher T.; Swingley, Daniel; Werker, Janet F.

    2010-01-01

    Can infants, in the very first stages of word learning, use their perceptual sensitivity to the phonetics of speech while learning words? Research to date suggests that infants of 14 months cannot learn two similar sounding words unless there is substantial contextual support. The current experiment advances our understanding of this failure by testing whether the source of infants’ difficulty lies in the learning or testing phase. Infants were taught to associate two similar sounding words with two different objects, and tested using a visual choice method rather than the standard Switch task. The results reveal that 14-month-olds are capable of learning and mapping two similar sounding labels; they can apply phonetic detail in new words. The findings are discussed in relation to infants’ concurrent failure, and the developmental transition to success, in the Switch task. PMID:19371365

  12. Electrophysiological evidence of early word learning

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Junge, C.M.M.; Cutler, A.; Hagoort, P.

    2012-01-01

    Around their first birthday infants begin to talk, yet they comprehend words long before. This study investigated the event-related potentials (ERP) responses of nine-month-olds on basic level picture–word pairings. After a familiarization phase of six picture–word pairings per semantic category,

  13. Electrophysiological evidence of early word learning

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Junge, Caroline; Cutler, Anne; Hagoort, Peter

    2012-01-01

    Around their first birthday infants begin to talk, yet they comprehend words long before. This study investigated the event-related potentials (ERP) responses of nine-month-olds on basic level picture-word pairings. After a familiarization phase of six picture-word pairings per semantic category,

  14. Representation Learning of Logic Words by an RNN: From Word Sequences to Robot Actions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tatsuro Yamada

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available An important characteristic of human language is compositionality. We can efficiently express a wide variety of real-world situations, events, and behaviors by compositionally constructing the meaning of a complex expression from a finite number of elements. Previous studies have analyzed how machine-learning models, particularly neural networks, can learn from experience to represent compositional relationships between language and robot actions with the aim of understanding the symbol grounding structure and achieving intelligent communicative agents. Such studies have mainly dealt with the words (nouns, adjectives, and verbs that directly refer to real-world matters. In addition to these words, the current study deals with logic words, such as “not,” “and,” and “or” simultaneously. These words are not directly referring to the real world, but are logical operators that contribute to the construction of meaning in sentences. In human–robot communication, these words may be used often. The current study builds a recurrent neural network model with long short-term memory units and trains it to learn to translate sentences including logic words into robot actions. We investigate what kind of compositional representations, which mediate sentences and robot actions, emerge as the network's internal states via the learning process. Analysis after learning shows that referential words are merged with visual information and the robot's own current state, and the logical words are represented by the model in accordance with their functions as logical operators. Words such as “true,” “false,” and “not” work as non-linear transformations to encode orthogonal phrases into the same area in a memory cell state space. The word “and,” which required a robot to lift up both its hands, worked as if it was a universal quantifier. The word “or,” which required action generation that looked apparently random, was represented as an

  15. Word Production and the Picture-Word Interference Paradigm: The Role of Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Collina, Simona; Tabossi, Patrizia; De Simone, Flavia

    2013-01-01

    Psycholinguistic experiments conducted with the picture-word interference paradigm are typically preceded by a phase during which participants learn the words they will have to produce in the experiment. In Experiment 1, the pictures (e.g., a frog) were to be named and were presented with a categorically related (e.g., "cat") or…

  16. The role of association in early word-learning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Scott P Johnson

    2012-08-01

    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.

  17. Electrophysiological evidence of early word learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Junge, Caroline; Cutler, Anne; Hagoort, Peter

    2012-12-01

    Around their first birthday infants begin to talk, yet they comprehend words long before. This study investigated the event-related potentials (ERP) responses of nine-month-olds on basic level picture-word pairings. After a familiarization phase of six picture-word pairings per semantic category, comprehension for novel exemplars was tested in a picture-word matching paradigm. ERPs time-locked to pictures elicited a modulation of the negative central (Nc) component, associated with visual attention and recognition. It was attenuated by category repetition as well as by the type-token ratio of picture context. ERPs time-locked to words in the training phase became more negative with repetition (N300-600), but there was no influence of picture type-token ratio, suggesting that infants have identified the concept of each picture before a word was presented. Results from the test phase provided clear support that infants integrated word meanings with (novel) picture context. Here, infants showed different ERP responses for words that did or did not align with the picture context: a phonological mismatch (N200) and a semantic mismatch (N400). Together, results were informative of visual categorization, word recognition and word-to-world-mappings, all three crucial processes for vocabulary construction. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Statistical Learning and Adaptive Decision-Making Underlie Human Response Time Variability in Inhibitory Control

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    Ning eMa

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Response time (RT is an oft-reported behavioral measure in psychological and neurocognitive experiments, but the high level of observed trial-to-trial variability in this measure has often limited its usefulness. Here, we combine computational modeling and psychophysics to examine the hypothesis that fluctuations in this noisy measure reflect dynamic computations in human statistical learning and corresponding cognitive adjustments. We present data from the stop-signal task, in which subjects respond to a go stimulus on each trial, unless instructed not to by a subsequent, infrequently presented stop signal. We model across-trial learning of stop signal frequency, P(stop, and stop-signal onset time, SSD (stop-signal delay, with a Bayesian hidden Markov model, and within-trial decision-making with an optimal stochastic control model. The combined model predicts that RT should increase with both expected P(stop and SSD. The human behavioral data (n=20 bear out this prediction, showing P(stop and SSD both to be significant, independent predictors of RT, with P(stop being a more prominent predictor in 75% of the subjects, and SSD being more prominent in the remaining 25%. The results demonstrate that humans indeed readily internalize environmental statistics and adjust their cognitive/behavioral strategy accordingly, and that subtle patterns in RT variability can serve as a valuable tool for validating models of statistical learning and decision-making. More broadly, the modeling tools presented in this work can be generalized to a large body of behavioral paradigms, in order to extract insights about cognitive and neural processing from apparently quite noisy behavioral measures. We also discuss how this behaviorally validated model can then be used to conduct model-based analysis of neural data, in order to help identify specific brain areas for representing and encoding key computational quantities in learning and decision-making.

  19. Interacting adaptive processes with different timescales underlie short-term motor learning.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maurice A Smith

    2006-06-01

    Full Text Available Multiple processes may contribute to motor skill acquisition, but it is thought that many of these processes require sleep or the passage of long periods of time ranging from several hours to many days or weeks. Here we demonstrate that within a timescale of minutes, two distinct fast-acting processes drive motor adaptation. One process responds weakly to error but retains information well, whereas the other responds strongly but has poor retention. This two-state learning system makes the surprising prediction of spontaneous recovery (or adaptation rebound if error feedback is clamped at zero following an adaptation-extinction training episode. We used a novel paradigm to experimentally confirm this prediction in human motor learning of reaching, and we show that the interaction between the learning processes in this simple two-state system provides a unifying explanation for several different, apparently unrelated, phenomena in motor adaptation including savings, anterograde interference, spontaneous recovery, and rapid unlearning. Our results suggest that motor adaptation depends on at least two distinct neural systems that have different sensitivity to error and retain information at different rates.

  20. Shared acoustic codes underlie emotional communication in music and speech-Evidence from deep transfer learning.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eduardo Coutinho

    Full Text Available Music and speech exhibit striking similarities in the communication of emotions in the acoustic domain, in such a way that the communication of specific emotions is achieved, at least to a certain extent, by means of shared acoustic patterns. From an Affective Sciences points of view, determining the degree of overlap between both domains is fundamental to understand the shared mechanisms underlying such phenomenon. From a Machine learning perspective, the overlap between acoustic codes for emotional expression in music and speech opens new possibilities to enlarge the amount of data available to develop music and speech emotion recognition systems. In this article, we investigate time-continuous predictions of emotion (Arousal and Valence in music and speech, and the Transfer Learning between these domains. We establish a comparative framework including intra- (i.e., models trained and tested on the same modality, either music or speech and cross-domain experiments (i.e., models trained in one modality and tested on the other. In the cross-domain context, we evaluated two strategies-the direct transfer between domains, and the contribution of Transfer Learning techniques (feature-representation-transfer based on Denoising Auto Encoders for reducing the gap in the feature space distributions. Our results demonstrate an excellent cross-domain generalisation performance with and without feature representation transfer in both directions. In the case of music, cross-domain approaches outperformed intra-domain models for Valence estimation, whereas for Speech intra-domain models achieve the best performance. This is the first demonstration of shared acoustic codes for emotional expression in music and speech in the time-continuous domain.

  1. Shared acoustic codes underlie emotional communication in music and speech-Evidence from deep transfer learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coutinho, Eduardo; Schuller, Björn

    2017-01-01

    Music and speech exhibit striking similarities in the communication of emotions in the acoustic domain, in such a way that the communication of specific emotions is achieved, at least to a certain extent, by means of shared acoustic patterns. From an Affective Sciences points of view, determining the degree of overlap between both domains is fundamental to understand the shared mechanisms underlying such phenomenon. From a Machine learning perspective, the overlap between acoustic codes for emotional expression in music and speech opens new possibilities to enlarge the amount of data available to develop music and speech emotion recognition systems. In this article, we investigate time-continuous predictions of emotion (Arousal and Valence) in music and speech, and the Transfer Learning between these domains. We establish a comparative framework including intra- (i.e., models trained and tested on the same modality, either music or speech) and cross-domain experiments (i.e., models trained in one modality and tested on the other). In the cross-domain context, we evaluated two strategies-the direct transfer between domains, and the contribution of Transfer Learning techniques (feature-representation-transfer based on Denoising Auto Encoders) for reducing the gap in the feature space distributions. Our results demonstrate an excellent cross-domain generalisation performance with and without feature representation transfer in both directions. In the case of music, cross-domain approaches outperformed intra-domain models for Valence estimation, whereas for Speech intra-domain models achieve the best performance. This is the first demonstration of shared acoustic codes for emotional expression in music and speech in the time-continuous domain.

  2. Shared acoustic codes underlie emotional communication in music and speech—Evidence from deep transfer learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schuller, Björn

    2017-01-01

    Music and speech exhibit striking similarities in the communication of emotions in the acoustic domain, in such a way that the communication of specific emotions is achieved, at least to a certain extent, by means of shared acoustic patterns. From an Affective Sciences points of view, determining the degree of overlap between both domains is fundamental to understand the shared mechanisms underlying such phenomenon. From a Machine learning perspective, the overlap between acoustic codes for emotional expression in music and speech opens new possibilities to enlarge the amount of data available to develop music and speech emotion recognition systems. In this article, we investigate time-continuous predictions of emotion (Arousal and Valence) in music and speech, and the Transfer Learning between these domains. We establish a comparative framework including intra- (i.e., models trained and tested on the same modality, either music or speech) and cross-domain experiments (i.e., models trained in one modality and tested on the other). In the cross-domain context, we evaluated two strategies—the direct transfer between domains, and the contribution of Transfer Learning techniques (feature-representation-transfer based on Denoising Auto Encoders) for reducing the gap in the feature space distributions. Our results demonstrate an excellent cross-domain generalisation performance with and without feature representation transfer in both directions. In the case of music, cross-domain approaches outperformed intra-domain models for Valence estimation, whereas for Speech intra-domain models achieve the best performance. This is the first demonstration of shared acoustic codes for emotional expression in music and speech in the time-continuous domain. PMID:28658285

  3. Learning Word Subsumption Projections for the Russian Language

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ustalov Dmitry

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The semantic relations of hypernymy and hyponymy are widely used in various natural language processing tasks for modelling the subsumptions in common sense reasoning. Since the popularisation of the distributional semantics, a significant attention is paid to applying word embeddings for inducing the relations between words. In this paper, we show our preliminary results on adopting the projection learning technique for computing hypernyms from hyponyms using word embeddings. We also conduct a series of experiments on the Russian language and release the open source software for learning hyponym-hypernym projections using both CPUs and GPUs, implemented with the TensorFlow machine learning framework.

  4. Realization of Chinese word segmentation based on deep learning method

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Xuefei; Wang, Mingjiang; Zhang, Qiquan

    2017-08-01

    In recent years, with the rapid development of deep learning, it has been widely used in the field of natural language processing. In this paper, I use the method of deep learning to achieve Chinese word segmentation, with large-scale corpus, eliminating the need to construct additional manual characteristics. In the process of Chinese word segmentation, the first step is to deal with the corpus, use word2vec to get word embedding of the corpus, each character is 50. After the word is embedded, the word embedding feature is fed to the bidirectional LSTM, add a linear layer to the hidden layer of the output, and then add a CRF to get the model implemented in this paper. Experimental results show that the method used in the 2014 People's Daily corpus to achieve a satisfactory accuracy.

  5. Why is number word learning hard? Evidence from bilingual learners.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wagner, Katie; Kimura, Katherine; Cheung, Pierina; Barner, David

    2015-12-01

    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. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  6. Semantic and associative factors in probability learning with words.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schipper, L M; Hanson, B L; Taylor, G; Thorpe, J A

    1973-09-01

    Using a probability-learning technique with a single word as the cue and with the probability of a given event following this word fixed at .80, it was found (1) that neither high nor low associates to the original word and (2) that neither synonyms nor antonyms showed differential learning curves subsequent to original learning when the probability for the following event was shifted to .20. In a second study when feedback, in the form of knowledge of results, was withheld, there was a clear-cut similarity of predictions to the originally trained word and the synonyms of both high and low association value and a dissimilarity of these words to a set of antonyms of both high and low association value. Two additional studies confirmed the importance of the semantic dimension as compared with association value as traditionally measured.

  7. Effects of Negative and Positive Evidence on Adult Word Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strapp, Chehalis M.; Helmick, Augusta L.; Tonkovich, Hayley M.; Bleakney, Dana M.

    2011-01-01

    This study compared negative and positive evidence in adult word learning, predicting that adults would learn more forms following negative evidence. Ninety-two native English speakers (32 men and 60 women [M[subscript age] = 20.38 years, SD = 2.80]), learned nonsense nouns and verbs provided within English frames. Later, participants produced…

  8. Phonological similarity influences word learning in adults learning Spanish as a foreign language.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stamer, Melissa K; Vitevitch, Michael S

    2012-07-01

    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.

  9. Judging Words by Their Covers and the Company They Keep: Probabilistic Cues Support Word Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lany, Jill

    2014-01-01

    Statistical learning may be central to lexical and grammatical development. The phonological and distributional properties of words provide probabilistic cues to their grammatical and semantic properties. Infants can capitalize on such probabilistic cues to learn grammatical patterns in listening tasks. However, infants often struggle to learn…

  10. Discourse Bootstrapping: Preschoolers Use Linguistic Discourse to Learn New Words

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sullivan, Jessica; Barner, David

    2016-01-01

    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…

  11. Which Second Language Learning Theories Underlie Language Courses Offered by Slovene Private Language Schools

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marša Meznarič

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available The article deals with language courses offered by private language schools in Slovenia. It examines who the people in charge of the language schools are, what criteria new teachers have to meet to become an employee of a school, whether the methodology applied (if any has been carefully chosen, what the teaching techniques are and who chooses them. Second language method discoveries have been subjected to perennial criticism and scepticism over the last half of century. Teachers around the globe have been confused by the constant shifts in the popularity of different methods. The article examines the con sequences of the abovementioned circumstances. The 15 interviews conducted with private language schools’ managers have generated valuable information on the level of professionalism in this area of business. The results have shown that most of the randomly chosen schools are managed by language professionals or by economists who employ a linguist for controlling the teaching and learning processes and that the majority of schools does adopt a particular approach or method of teaching. Teacher trainees receive a lot of support and guidance prior to teaching in a school. In most cases, teachers are free to choose techniques of teaching according to their preferences, providing the techniques are not in conflict with the general schools’ principles. The criteria for employment vary considerably. Nearly all managers would employ a professional language teacher with experience only, but others demand that the teacher be a native speaker regardless of his/her education. Several stress the importance of personal characteristics and would consider employing only lighthearted and energetic teachers. Teachers’ work and students’ progress are often evaluated.

  12. Do domestic dogs learn words based on humans' referential behaviour?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sebastian Tempelmann

    Full Text Available Some domestic dogs learn to comprehend human words, although the nature and basis of this learning is unknown. In the studies presented here we investigated whether dogs learn words through an understanding of referential actions by humans rather than simple association. In three studies, each modelled on a study conducted with human infants, we confronted four word-experienced dogs with situations involving no spatial-temporal contiguity between the word and the referent; the only available cues were referential actions displaced in time from exposure to their referents. We found that no dogs were able to reliably link an object with a label based on social-pragmatic cues alone in all the tests. However, one dog did show skills in some tests, possibly indicating an ability to learn based on social-pragmatic cues.

  13. Influence of syllable structure on L2 auditory word learning.

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    Hamada, Megumi; Goya, Hideki

    2015-04-01

    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 closed-syllable structure and consonant clusters. Two groups of college students (Japanese group, N = 22; and native speakers of English, N = 21) learned paired English pseudowords and pictures. The pseudoword types differed in terms of the syllable structure and consonant clusters (congruent vs. incongruent) and the position of consonant clusters (coda vs. onset). Recall accuracy was higher for the pseudowords in the congruent type and the pseudowords with the coda-consonant clusters. The syllable structure effect was obtained from both participant groups, disconfirming the hypothesized cross-linguistic influence on L2 auditory word learning.

  14. Proficiency and sentence constraint effects on second language word learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Tengfei; Chen, Baoguo; Lu, Chunming; Dunlap, Susan

    2015-07-01

    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. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  15. Do domestic dogs learn words based on humans' referential behaviour?

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    Tempelmann, Sebastian; Kaminski, Juliane; Tomasello, Michael

    2014-01-01

    Some domestic dogs learn to comprehend human words, although the nature and basis of this learning is unknown. In the studies presented here we investigated whether dogs learn words through an understanding of referential actions by humans rather than simple association. In three studies, each modelled on a study conducted with human infants, we confronted four word-experienced dogs with situations involving no spatial-temporal contiguity between the word and the referent; the only available cues were referential actions displaced in time from exposure to their referents. We found that no dogs were able to reliably link an object with a label based on social-pragmatic cues alone in all the tests. However, one dog did show skills in some tests, possibly indicating an ability to learn based on social-pragmatic cues.

  16. Novel word learning in older adults: A role for sleep?

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    Kurdziel, Laura B F; Mantua, Janna; Spencer, Rebecca M C

    2017-04-01

    Sleep is an offline period during which newly acquired semantic information is transformed into longer-lasting memories. Language acquisition, which requires new word learning and semantic integration, is preferentially benefitted by a period of sleep in children and young adults. Specific features of sleep (e.g., sleep stage characteristics) have been associated with enhanced language acquisition and generalization. However, with increasing age, even in healthy individuals, sleep quality and quantity decrease. Simultaneously, deficits in word retrieval and new word learning emerge. Yet it is unknown whether age-related alterations in language ability are linked with alterations in sleep. The goal of this review is to examine changes in language learning and sleep across the lifespan. We consider how sleep detriments that occur with aging could affect abilities to learn novel words and semantic generalization and propose hypotheses to motivate future research in this area. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Learning words and rules: abstract knowledge of word order in early sentence comprehension.

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    Gertner, Yael; Fisher, Cynthia; Eisengart, Julie

    2006-08-01

    Children quickly acquire basic grammatical facts about their native language. Does this early syntactic knowledge involve knowledge of words or rules? According to lexical accounts of acquisition, abstract syntactic and semantic categories are not primitive to the language-acquisition system; thus, early language comprehension and production are based on verb-specific knowledge. The present experiments challenge this account: We probed the abstractness of young children's knowledge of syntax by testing whether 25- and 21-month-olds extend their knowledge of English word order to new verbs. In four experiments, children used word order appropriately to interpret transitive sentences containing novel verbs. These findings demonstrate that although toddlers have much to learn about their native languages, they represent language experience in terms of an abstract mental vocabulary. These abstract representations allow children to rapidly detect general patterns in their native language, and thus to learn rules as well as words from the start.

  18. Learning Words through Computer-Adaptive Tool

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zhang, Chun

    2005-01-01

    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...

  19. The role of partial knowledge in statistical word learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fricker, Damian C.; Yu, Chen; Smith, Linda B.

    2013-01-01

    A critical question about the nature of human learning is whether it is an all-or-none or a gradual, accumulative process. Associative and statistical theories of word learning rely critically on the later assumption: that the process of learning a word's meaning unfolds over time. That is, learning the correct referent for a word involves the accumulation of partial knowledge across multiple instances. Some theories also make an even stronger claim: Partial knowledge of one word–object mapping can speed up the acquisition of other word–object mappings. We present three experiments that test and verify these claims by exposing learners to two consecutive blocks of cross-situational learning, in which half of the words and objects in the second block were those that participants failed to learn in Block 1. In line with an accumulative account, Re-exposure to these mis-mapped items accelerated the acquisition of both previously experienced mappings and wholly new word–object mappings. But how does partial knowledge of some words speed the acquisition of others? We consider two hypotheses. First, partial knowledge of a word could reduce the amount of information required for it to reach threshold, and the supra-threshold mapping could subsequently aid in the acquisition of new mappings. Alternatively, partial knowledge of a word's meaning could be useful for disambiguating the meanings of other words even before the threshold of learning is reached. We construct and compare computational models embodying each of these hypotheses and show that the latter provides a better explanation of the empirical data. PMID:23702980

  20. More than words: fast acquisition and generalization of orthographic regularities during novel word learning in adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laine, Matti; Polonyi, Tünde; Abari, Kálmán

    2014-08-01

    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.

  1. Empowering Students with Word-Learning Strategies: Teach a Child to Fish

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graves, Michael F.; Schneider, Steven; Ringstaff, Cathy

    2018-01-01

    This article on word-learning strategies describes a theory- and research-based set of procedures for teaching students to use word-learning strategies--word parts, context clues, the dictionary, and a combined strategy--to infer the meanings of unknown words. The article begins with a rationale for teaching word-learning strategies, particularly…

  2. Incorporating linguistic knowledge for learning distributed word representations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Yan; Liu, Zhiyuan; Sun, Maosong

    2015-01-01

    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.

  3. Do preschool children learn to read words from environmental prints?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jing Zhao

    Full Text Available Parents and teachers worldwide believe that a visual environment rich with print can contribute to young children's literacy. Children seem to recognize words in familiar logos at an early age. However, most of previous studies were carried out with alphabetic scripts. Alphabetic letters regularly correspond to phonological segments in a word and provide strong cues about the identity of the whole word. Thus it was not clear whether children can learn to read words by extracting visual word form information from environmental prints. To exclude the phonological-cue confound, this study tested children's knowledge of Chinese words embedded in familiar logos. The four environmental logos were employed and transformed into four versions with the contextual cues (i.e., something apart from the presentation of the words themselves in logo format like the color, logo and font type cues gradually minimized. Children aged from 3 to 5 were tested. We observed that children of different ages all performed better when words were presented in highly familiar logos compared to when they were presented in a plain fashion, devoid of context. This advantage for familiar logos was also present when the contextual information was only partial. However, the role of various cues in learning words changed with age. The color and logo cues had a larger effect in 3- and 4- year-olds than in 5-year-olds, while the font type cue played a greater role in 5-year-olds than in the other two groups. Our findings demonstrated that young children did not easily learn words by extracting their visual form information even from familiar environmental prints. However, children aged 5 begin to pay more attention to the visual form information of words in highly familiar logos than those aged 3 and 4.

  4. Listening while reading promotes word learning from stories.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valentini, Alessandra; Ricketts, Jessie; Pye, Rachel E; Houston-Price, Carmel

    2018-03-01

    Reading and listening to stories fosters vocabulary development. Studies of single word learning suggest that new words are more likely to be learned when both their oral and written forms are provided, compared with when only one form is given. This study explored children's learning of phonological, orthographic, and semantic information about words encountered in a story context. A total of 71 children (8- and 9-year-olds) were exposed to a story containing novel words in one of three conditions: (a) listening, (b) reading, or (c) simultaneous listening and reading ("combined" condition). Half of the novel words were presented with a definition, and half were presented without a definition. Both phonological and orthographic learning were assessed through recognition tasks. Semantic learning was measured using three tasks assessing recognition of each word's category, subcategory, and definition. Phonological learning was observed in all conditions, showing that phonological recoding supported the acquisition of phonological forms when children were not exposed to phonology (the reading condition). In contrast, children showed orthographic learning of the novel words only when they were exposed to orthographic forms, indicating that exposure to phonological forms alone did not prompt the establishment of orthographic representations. Semantic learning was greater in the combined condition than in the listening and reading conditions. The presence of the definition was associated with better performance on the semantic subcategory and definition posttests but not on the phonological, orthographic, or category posttests. Findings are discussed in relation to the lexical quality hypothesis and the availability of attentional resources. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  5. Contending with foreign accent in early word learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmale, Rachel; Hollich, George; Seidl, Amanda

    2011-11-01

    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.

  6. Learning word order at birth: A NIRS study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benavides-Varela, Silvia; Gervain, Judit

    2017-06-01

    In language, the relative order of words in sentences carries important grammatical functions. However, the developmental origins and the neural correlates of the ability to track word order are to date poorly understood. The current study therefore investigates the origins of infants' ability to learn about the sequential order of words, using near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) with newborn infants. We have conducted two experiments: one in which a word order change was implemented in 4-word sequences recorded with a list intonation (as if each word was a separate item in a list; list prosody condition, Experiment 1) and one in which the same 4-word sequences were recorded with a well-formed utterance-level prosodic contour (utterance prosody condition, Experiment 2). We found that newborns could detect the violation of the word order in the list prosody condition, but not in the utterance prosody condition. These results suggest that while newborns are already sensitive to word order in linguistic sequences, prosody appears to be a stronger cue than word order for the identification of linguistic units at birth. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  7. Learning word order at birth: A NIRS study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Silvia Benavides-Varela

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available In language, the relative order of words in sentences carries important grammatical functions. However, the developmental origins and the neural correlates of the ability to track word order are to date poorly understood. The current study therefore investigates the origins of infants’ ability to learn about the sequential order of words, using near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS with newborn infants. We have conducted two experiments: one in which a word order change was implemented in 4-word sequences recorded with a list intonation (as if each word was a separate item in a list; list prosody condition, Experiment 1 and one in which the same 4-word sequences were recorded with a well-formed utterance-level prosodic contour (utterance prosody condition, Experiment 2. We found that newborns could detect the violation of the word order in the list prosody condition, but not in the utterance prosody condition. These results suggest that while newborns are already sensitive to word order in linguistic sequences, prosody appears to be a stronger cue than word order for the identification of linguistic units at birth.

  8. Chinese Number Words, Culture, and Mathematics Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ng, Sharon Sui Ngan; Rao, Nirmala

    2010-01-01

    This review evaluates the role of language--specifically, the Chinese-based system of number words and the simplicity of Chinese mathematical terms--in explaining the relatively superior performance of Chinese and other East Asian students in cross-national studies of mathematics achievement. Relevant research is critically reviewed focusing on…

  9. Sound-Symbolism Boosts Novel Word Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lockwood, Gwilym; Dingemanse, Mark; Hagoort, Peter

    2016-01-01

    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…

  10. Relative speed of processing determines color-word contingency learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forrin, Noah D; MacLeod, Colin M

    2017-10-01

    In three experiments, we tested a relative-speed-of-processing account of color-word contingency learning, a phenomenon in which color identification responses to high-contingency stimuli (words that appear most often in particular colors) are faster than those to low-contingency stimuli. Experiment 1 showed equally large contingency-learning effects whether responding was to the colors or to the words, likely due to slow responding to both dimensions because of the unfamiliar mapping required by the key press responses. For Experiment 2, participants switched to vocal responding, in which reading words is considerably faster than naming colors, and we obtained a contingency-learning effect only for color naming, the slower dimension. In Experiment 3, previewing the color information resulted in a reduced contingency-learning effect for color naming, but it enhanced the contingency-learning effect for word reading. These results are all consistent with contingency learning influencing performance only when the nominally irrelevant feature is faster to process than the relevant feature, and therefore are entirely in accord with a relative-speed-of-processing explanation.

  11. Cross-situational word learning is both implicit and strategic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kachergis, George; Yu, Chen; Shiffrin, Richard M

    2014-01-01

    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.

  12. The Semiotics of Learning New Words

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nöth, Winfried

    2014-01-01

    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…

  13. Deep generative learning of location-invariant visual word recognition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Di Bono, Maria Grazia; Zorzi, Marco

    2013-01-01

    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

  14. Deep generative learning of location-invariant visual word recognition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Grazia eDi Bono

    2013-09-01

    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.

  15. N400 Response Indexes Word Learning from Linguistic Context in Children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abel, Alyson D.; Schneider, Julie; Maguire, Mandy J

    2018-01-01

    Word learning from linguistic context is essential for vocabulary growth from grade school onward; however, little is known about the mechanisms underlying successful word learning in children. Current methods for studying word learning development require children to identify the meaning of the word after each exposure, a method that interacts…

  16. Phonological and Semantic Knowledge Are Causal Influences on Learning to Read Words in Chinese

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Lulin; Duff, Fiona J.; Hulme, Charles

    2015-01-01

    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.…

  17. Foreign language learning, hyperlexia, and early word recognition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sparks, R L; Artzer, M

    2000-01-01

    Children with hyperlexia read words spontaneously before the age of five, have impaired comprehension on both listening and reading tasks, and have word recognition skill above expectations based on cognitive and linguistic abilities. One student with hyperlexia and another student with higher word recognition than comprehension skills who started to read words at a very early age were followed over several years from the primary grades through high school when both were completing a second-year Spanish course. The purpose of the present study was to examine the foreign language (FL) word recognition, spelling, reading comprehension, writing, speaking, and listening skills of the two students and another high school student without hyperlexia. Results showed that the student without hyperlexia achieved higher scores than the hyperlexic student and the student with above average word recognition skills on most FL proficiency measures. The student with hyperlexia and the student with above average word recognition skills achieved higher scores on the Spanish proficiency tasks that required the exclusive use of phonological (pronunciation) and phonological/orthographic (word recognition, spelling) skills than on Spanish proficiency tasks that required the use of listening comprehension and speaking and writing skills. The findings provide support for the notion that word recognition and spelling in a FL may be modular processes and exist independently of general cognitive and linguistic skills. Results also suggest that students may have stronger FL learning skills in one language component than in other components of language, and that there may be a weak relationship between FL word recognition and oral proficiency in the FL.

  18. Learning nonwords: the Hebb repetition effect as a model of word learning.

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    Norris, Dennis; Page, Michael P A; Hall, Jane

    2018-01-03

    Page and Norris [(2008). Is there a common mechanism underlying word-form learning and the Hebb repetition effect? Experimental data and a modelling framework. In A. Thorn & M. P. A. Page (Eds.), Interactions between short-term and long-term memory in the verbal domain; (2009). A model linking immediate serial recall, the Hebb repetition effect and the learning of phonological word forms. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 364(1536), 3737-3753. doi:10.1098/rstb.2009.0173] have suggested that the Hebb [(1961). Distinctive features of learning in the higher animal. In J. F. Delafresnaye (Ed.), Brain mechanisms and learning (pp. 37-46). Oxford: Blackwell] repetition paradigm can be considered as a laboratory analogue of word learning. In Hebb learning experiments, the lists of items to be learned are presented as discrete sequences. In contrast, novel words are, by definition, always heard as a single coarticulated whole. Might this undermine the claim that Hebb learning can shed light on word learning? Here we report an experiment comparing learning sequences of isolated syllables with learning the same sequences spoken as a single coarticulated nonword. The pattern of learning was similar in the two cases, suggesting that the Hebb repetition paradigm can indeed provide valuable insights into the way novel word forms are learned.

  19. Statistical word learning at scale: the baby's view is better.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yurovsky, Daniel; Smith, Linda B; Yu, Chen

    2013-11-01

    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. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  20. Unspoken Words: Understanding Nonverbal Learning Disabilities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Darrow, Alice-Ann

    2016-01-01

    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…

  1. Word Lists for Vocabulary Learning and Teaching

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lessard-Clouston, Michael

    2013-01-01

    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…

  2. Learning the language of time: Children's acquisition of duration words.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tillman, Katharine A; Barner, David

    2015-05-01

    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. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Difficulty in Learning Similar-Sounding Words: A Developmental Stage or a General Property of Learning?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pajak, Bozena; Creel, Sarah C.; Levy, Roger

    2016-01-01

    How are languages learned, and to what extent are learning mechanisms similar in infant native-language (L1) and adult second-language (L2) acquisition? In terms of vocabulary acquisition, we know from the infant literature that the ability to discriminate similar-sounding words at a particular age does not guarantee successful word-meaning…

  4. Implicit Learning of L2 Word Stress Regularities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chan, Ricky K. W.; Leung, Janny H. C.

    2014-01-01

    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…

  5. Using Cognitive Tutor Software in Learning Linear Algebra Word Concept

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Kai-Ju

    2015-01-01

    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…

  6. Isolated Words Enhance Statistical Language Learning in Infancy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lew-Williams, Casey; Pelucchi, Bruna; Saffran, Jenny R.

    2011-01-01

    Infants are adept at tracking statistical regularities to identify word boundaries in pause-free speech. However, researchers have questioned the relevance of statistical learning mechanisms to language acquisition, since previous studies have used simplified artificial languages that ignore the variability of real language input. The experiments…

  7. Attention and Word Learning in Toddlers Who Are Late Talkers

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacRoy-Higgins, Michelle; Montemarano, Elizabeth A.

    2016-01-01

    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…

  8. Learning Words for Life: Promoting Vocabulary in Dual Language Learners

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gillanders, Cristina; Castro, Dina C.; Franco, Ximena

    2014-01-01

    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…

  9. Difficulty in learning similar-sounding words: A developmental stage or a general property of learning?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pajak, Bozena; Creel, Sarah C; Levy, Roger

    2016-09-01

    How are languages learned, and to what extent are learning mechanisms similar in infant native-language (L1) and adult second-language (L2) acquisition? In terms of vocabulary acquisition, we know from the infant literature that the ability to discriminate similar-sounding words at a particular age does not guarantee successful word-meaning mapping at that age (Stager & Werker, 1997). However, it is unclear whether this difficulty arises from developmental limitations of young infants (e.g., poorer working memory) or whether it is an intrinsic part of the initial word learning, L1 and L2 alike. In this study, we show that adults of particular L1 backgrounds-just like young infants-have difficulty learning similar-sounding L2 words that they can nevertheless discriminate perceptually. This suggests that the early stages of word learning, whether L1 or L2, intrinsically involve difficulty in mapping similar-sounding words onto referents. We argue that this is due to an interaction between 2 main factors: (a) memory limitations that pose particular challenges for highly similar-sounding words, and (b) uncertainty regarding the language's phonetic categories, because the categories are being learned concurrently with words. Overall, our results show that vocabulary acquisition in infancy and adulthood shares more similarities than previously thought, thus supporting the existence of common learning mechanisms that operate throughout the life span. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved).

  10. Learning during Processing: Word Learning Doesn't Wait for Word Recognition to Finish

    Science.gov (United States)

    Apfelbaum, Keith S.; McMurray, Bob

    2017-01-01

    Previous research on associative learning has uncovered detailed aspects of the process, including what types of things are learned, how they are learned, and where in the brain such learning occurs. However, perceptual processes, such as stimulus recognition and identification, take time to unfold. Previous studies of learning have not addressed…

  11. Does language learning disability in school-age children affect semantic word learning when reading?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steele, Sara C

    2015-04-01

    The study was undertaken to determine how position of informative context, rate of word presentation and part of speech impacted novel word learning during reading in children with language learning disability. Children with language learning disability (LLD; n = 13), age-matched peers (n = 13) and vocabulary-matched peers (n = 13) read four narrative passages containing 10 nouns and 10 verbs. Informative context provided clues to word meanings and was either adjacent or non-adjacent to the target words. Target words occurred either twice (low rate) or 5-times (high rate). Following reading, word learning was assessed using dynamic assessment, including oral definitions, contextual clues and forced choices. Overall, age-matched peers performed better than children with LLD and vocabulary-matched peers, who performed similarly. No effect was found for position of informative context; however, word learning improved with high rate of presentation for children with LLD. Nouns were easier to learn than verbs for all groups. Results indicated that children with LLD show limitations gaining semantic knowledge of novel words during reading, which could negatively impact their overall rate of vocabulary acquisition.

  12. White noise enhances new-word learning in healthy adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Angwin, Anthony J; Wilson, Wayne J; Arnott, Wendy L; Signorini, Annabelle; Barry, Robert J; Copland, David A

    2017-10-12

    Research suggests that listening to white noise may improve some aspects of cognitive performance in individuals with lower attention. This study investigated the impact of white noise on new word learning in healthy young adults, and whether this effect was mediated by executive attention skills. Eighty participants completed a single training session to learn the names of twenty novel objects. The session comprised 5 learning phases, each followed by a recall test. A final recognition test was also administered. Half the participants listened to white noise during the learning phases, and half completed the learning in silence. The noise group demonstrated superior recall accuracy over time, which was not impacted by participant attentional capacity. Recognition accuracy was near ceiling for both groups. These findings suggest that white noise has the capacity to enhance lexical acquisition.

  13. Fast Brain Plasticity during Word Learning in Musically-Trained Children

    OpenAIRE

    Dittinger, Eva; Chobert, Julie; Ziegler, Johannes C.; Besson, Mireille

    2017-01-01

    International audience; Children learn new words every day and this ability requires auditory perception, phoneme discrimination, attention, associative learning and semantic memory. Based on previous results showing that some of these functions are enhanced by music training, we investigated learning of novel words through picture-word associations in musically-trained and control children (8–12 year-old) to determine whether music training would positively influence word learning. Results s...

  14. Cross-Situational Learning with Bayesian Generative Models for Multimodal Category and Word Learning in Robots

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Akira Taniguchi

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available In this paper, we propose a Bayesian generative model that can form multiple categories based on each sensory-channel and can associate words with any of the four sensory-channels (action, position, object, and color. This paper focuses on cross-situational learning using the co-occurrence between words and information of sensory-channels in complex situations rather than conventional situations of cross-situational learning. We conducted a learning scenario using a simulator and a real humanoid iCub robot. In the scenario, a human tutor provided a sentence that describes an object of visual attention and an accompanying action to the robot. The scenario was set as follows: the number of words per sensory-channel was three or four, and the number of trials for learning was 20 and 40 for the simulator and 25 and 40 for the real robot. The experimental results showed that the proposed method was able to estimate the multiple categorizations and to learn the relationships between multiple sensory-channels and words accurately. In addition, we conducted an action generation task and an action description task based on word meanings learned in the cross-situational learning scenario. The experimental results showed that the robot could successfully use the word meanings learned by using the proposed method.

  15. Stroop effects from newly learned color words : effects of memory consolidation and episodic context

    OpenAIRE

    Geukes, Sebastian; Gaskell, M Gareth; Zwitserlood, Pienie

    2015-01-01

    The Stroop task is an excellent tool to test whether reading a word automatically activates its associated meaning, and it has been widely used in mono- and bilingual contexts. Despite of its ubiquity, the task has not yet been employed to test the automaticity of recently established word-concept links in novel-word-learning studies, under strict experimental control of learning and testing conditions. In three experiments, we thus paired novel words with native language (German) color words...

  16. Consolidation of novel word learning in native English-speaking adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kurdziel, Laura B F; Spencer, Rebecca M C

    2016-01-01

    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.

  17. The Origins of Verb Learning: Preverbal and Postverbal Infants' Learning of Word-Action Relations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gogate, Lakshmi; Maganti, Madhavilatha

    2017-12-20

    This experiment examined English- or Spanish-learning preverbal (8-9 months, n = 32) and postverbal (12-14 months, n = 40) infants' learning of word-action pairings prior to and after the transition to verb comprehension and its relation to naturally learned vocabulary. Infants of both verbal levels were first habituated to 2 dynamic video displays of novel word-action pairings, the words /wem/ or /bæf/, spoken synchronously with an adult shaking or looming an object, and tested with interchanged (switched) versus same word-action pairings. Mothers of the postverbal infants were asked to report on their infants' vocabulary on the MacArthur-Bates Communicative Development Inventories (Fenson et al., 1994). The preverbal infants looked longer to the switched relative to same pairings, suggesting word-action mapping, but not the postverbal infants. Mothers of the postverbal infants reported a noun bias on the MacArthur-Bates Communicative Development Inventories; infants learned more nouns than verbs in the natural environment. Further analyses revealed marginal word-action mapping in postverbal infants who learned fewer nouns and only comprehended verbs (post-verb comprehension), but not in those who learned more nouns and also produced verbs (post-verb production). These findings on verb learning from inside and outside the laboratory suggest a developmental shift from domain-general to language-specific mechanisms. Long before they talk, infants learning a noun-dominant language learn synchronous word-action relations. As a postverbal language-specific noun bias develops, this learning temporarily diminishes. https://doi.org/10.23641/asha.5592637.

  18. Applying active learning to supervised word sense disambiguation in MEDLINE.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Yukun; Cao, Hongxin; Mei, Qiaozhu; Zheng, Kai; Xu, Hua

    2013-01-01

    This study was to assess whether active learning strategies can be integrated with supervised word sense disambiguation (WSD) methods, thus reducing the number of annotated samples, while keeping or improving the quality of disambiguation models. We developed support vector machine (SVM) classifiers to disambiguate 197 ambiguous terms and abbreviations in the MSH WSD collection. Three different uncertainty sampling-based active learning algorithms were implemented with the SVM classifiers and were compared with a passive learner (PL) based on random sampling. For each ambiguous term and each learning algorithm, a learning curve that plots the accuracy computed from the test set as a function of the number of annotated samples used in the model was generated. The area under the learning curve (ALC) was used as the primary metric for evaluation. Our experiments demonstrated that active learners (ALs) significantly outperformed the PL, showing better performance for 177 out of 197 (89.8%) WSD tasks. Further analysis showed that to achieve an average accuracy of 90%, the PL needed 38 annotated samples, while the ALs needed only 24, a 37% reduction in annotation effort. Moreover, we analyzed cases where active learning algorithms did not achieve superior performance and identified three causes: (1) poor models in the early learning stage; (2) easy WSD cases; and (3) difficult WSD cases, which provide useful insight for future improvements. This study demonstrated that integrating active learning strategies with supervised WSD methods could effectively reduce annotation cost and improve the disambiguation models.

  19. Word learning and phonetic processing in preschool-age children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Havy, Mélanie; Bertoncini, Josiane; Nazzi, Thierry

    2011-01-01

    Consonants and vowels have been shown to play different relative roles in different processes, including retrieving known words from pseudowords during adulthood or simultaneously learning two phonetically similar pseudowords during infancy or toddlerhood. The current study explores the extent to which French-speaking 3- to 5-year-olds exhibit a so-called "consonant bias" in a task simulating word acquisition, that is, when learning new words for unfamiliar objects. In Experiment 1, the to-be-learned words differed both by a consonant and a vowel (e.g., /byf/-/duf/), and children needed to choose which of the two objects to associate with a third one whose name differed from both objects by either a consonant or a vowel (e.g., /dyf/). In such a conflict condition, children needed to favor (or neglect) either consonant information or vowel information. The results show that only 3-year-olds preferentially chose the consonant identity, thereby neglecting the vowel change. The older children (and adults) did not exhibit any response bias. In Experiment 2, children needed to pick up one of two objects whose names differed on either consonant information or vowel information. Whereas 3-year-olds performed better with pairs of pseudowords contrasting on consonants, the pattern of asymmetry was reversed in 4-year-olds, and 5-year-olds did not exhibit any significant response bias. Interestingly, girls showed overall better performance and exhibited earlier changes in performance than boys. The changes in consonant/vowel asymmetry in preschoolers are discussed in relation with developments in linguistic (lexical and morphosyntactic) and cognitive processing. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. "The Sum of Its Parts": Joint Learning of Word and Phrase Representations with Autoencoders

    OpenAIRE

    Lebret, Rémi; Collobert, Ronan

    2015-01-01

    Recently, there has been a lot of effort to represent words in continuous vector spaces. Those representations have been shown to capture both semantic and syntactic information about words. However, distributed representations of phrases remain a challenge. We introduce a novel model that jointly learns word vector representations and their summation. Word representations are learnt using the word co-occurrence statistical information. To embed sequences of words (i.e. phrases) with differ...

  1. Word learning emerges from the interaction of online referent selection and slow associative learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    McMurray, Bob; Horst, Jessica S.; Samuelson, Larissa K.

    2013-01-01

    Classic approaches to word learning emphasize the problem of referential ambiguity: in any naming situation the referent of a novel word must be selected from many possible objects, properties, actions, etc. To solve this problem, researchers have posited numerous constraints, and inference strategies, but assume that determining the referent of a novel word is isomorphic to learning. We present an alternative model in which referent selection is an online process that is independent of long-term learning. This two timescale approach creates significant power in the developing system. We illustrate this with a dynamic associative model in which referent selection is simulated as dynamic competition between competing referents, and learning is simulated using associative (Hebbian) learning. This model can account for a range of findings including the delay in expressive vocabulary relative to receptive vocabulary, learning under high degrees of referential ambiguity using cross-situational statistics, accelerating (vocabulary explosion) and decelerating (power-law) learning rates, fast-mapping by mutual exclusivity (and differences in bilinguals), improvements in familiar word recognition with development, and correlations between individual differences in speed of processing and learning. Five theoretical points are illustrated. 1) Word learning does not require specialized processes – general association learning buttressed by dynamic competition can account for much of the literature. 2) The processes of recognizing familiar words are not different than those that support novel words (e.g., fast-mapping). 3) Online competition may allow the network (or child) to leverage information available in the task to augment performance or behavior despite what might be relatively slow learning or poor representations. 4) Even associative learning is more complex than previously thought – a major contributor to performance is the pruning of incorrect associations

  2. PROMOTING INCIDENTAL VOCABULARY LEARNING THROUGH VERBAL DRAMATIZATION OF WORDS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Looi-Chin Ch’ng

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Despite the fact that explicit teaching of vocabulary is often practised in English as a Second Language (ESL classrooms, it has been proven to be rather ineffective, largely because words are not taught in context. This has prompted the increasing use of incidental vocabulary learning approach, which emphasises on repeated readings as a source for vocabulary learning. By adopting this approach, this study aims to investigate students’ ability in learning vocabulary incidentally via verbal dramatization of written texts. In this case, readers’ theatre (RT is used as a way to allow learners to engage in active reading so as to promote vocabulary learning. A total of 160 diploma students participated in this case study and they were divided equally into two groups, namely classroom reading (CR and RT groups. A proficiency test was first conducted to determine their vocabulary levels. Based on the test results, a story was selected as the reading material in the two groups. The CR group read the story through a normal reading lesson in class while the RT group was required to verbally dramatize the text through readers’ theatre activity. Then, a post-test based on vocabulary levels was carried out and the results were compared. The findings revealed that incidental learning was more apparent in the RT group and their ability to learn words from the higher levels was noticeable through higher accuracy scores. Although not conclusive, this study has demonstrated the potential of using readers’ theatre as a form of incidental vocabulary learning activity in ESL settings.

  3. Novel Word Learning, Reading Difficulties, and Phonological Processing Skills.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kalashnikova, Marina; Burnham, Denis

    2016-05-01

    Visual-verbal paired associate learning (PAL) refers to the ability to establish an arbitrary association between a visual referent and an unfamiliar label. It is now established that this ability is impaired in children with dyslexia, but the source of this deficit is yet to be specified. This study assesses PAL performance in children with reading difficulties using a modified version of the PAL paradigm, comprising a comprehension and a production phase, to determine whether the PAL deficit lies in children's ability to establish and retain novel object-novel word associations or their ability to retrieve the learned novel labels for production. Results showed that while children with reading difficulties required significantly more trials to learn the object-word associations, when they were required to use these associations in a comprehension-referent selection task, their accuracy and speed did not differ from controls. Nevertheless, children with reading difficulties were significantly less successful when they were required to produce the learned novel labels in response to the visual stimuli. Thus, these results indicate that while children with reading difficulties are successful at establishing visual-verbal associations, they have a deficit in the verbal production component of PAL tasks, which may relate to a more general underlying impairment in auditory or phonological processing. Copyright © 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. Copyright © 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  4. Novel-word learning deficits in Mandarin-speaking preschool children with specific language impairments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Yuchun; Liu, Huei-Mei

    2014-01-01

    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. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Napping facilitates word learning in early lexical development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horváth, Klára; Myers, Kyle; Foster, Russell; Plunkett, Kim

    2015-10-01

    Little is known about the role that night-time sleep and daytime naps play in early cognitive development. Our aim was to investigate how napping affects word learning in 16-month-olds. Thirty-four typically developing infants were assigned randomly to nap and wake groups. After teaching two novel object-word pairs to infants, we tested their initial performance with an intermodal preferential looking task in which infants are expected to increase their target looking time compared to a distracter after hearing its auditory label. A second test session followed after approximately a 2-h delay. The delay contained sleep for the nap group or no sleep for the wake group. Looking behaviour was measured with an automatic eye-tracker. Vocabulary size was assessed using the Oxford Communicative Development Inventory. A significant interaction between group and session was found in preferential looking towards the target picture. The performance of the nap group increased after the nap, whereas that of the wake group did not change. The gain in performance correlated positively with the expressive vocabulary size in the nap group. These results indicate that daytime napping helps consolidate word learning in infancy. © 2015 European Sleep Research Society.

  6. Grounding statistical learning in context: The effects of learning and retrieval contexts on cross-situational word learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Chi-Hsin; Yu, Chen

    2017-06-01

    Natural language environments usually provide structured contexts for learning. This study examined the effects of semantically themed contexts-in both learning and retrieval phases-on statistical word learning. Results from 2 experiments consistently showed that participants had higher performance in semantically themed learning contexts. In contrast, themed retrieval contexts did not affect performance. Our work suggests that word learners are sensitive to statistical regularities not just at the level of individual word-object co-occurrences but also at another level containing a whole network of associations among objects and their properties.

  7. Learning word meanings during reading by children with language learning disability and typically-developing peers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steele, Sara C; Watkins, Ruth V

    2010-06-01

    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.

  8. The Acquisition of Simple Associations as Observed in Color-Word Contingency Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Olivia Y.-H.; MacLeod, Colin M.

    2018-01-01

    Three experiments investigated the learning of simple associations in a color-word contingency task. Participants responded manually to the print colors of 3 words, with each word associated strongly to 1 of the 3 colors and weakly to the other 2 colors. Despite the words being irrelevant, response times to high-contingency stimuli and to…

  9. Orthographic Mapping in the Acquisition of Sight Word Reading, Spelling Memory, and Vocabulary Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ehri, Linnea C.

    2014-01-01

    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…

  10. The company objects keep: Linking referents together during cross-situational word learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zettersten, Martin; Wojcik, Erica; Benitez, Viridiana L; Saffran, Jenny

    2018-04-01

    Learning the meanings of words involves not only linking individual words to referents but also building a network of connections among entities in the world, concepts, and words. Previous studies reveal that infants and adults track the statistical co-occurrence of labels and objects across multiple ambiguous training instances to learn words. However, it is less clear whether, given distributional or attentional cues, learners also encode associations amongst the novel objects. We investigated the consequences of two types of cues that highlighted object-object links in a cross-situational word learning task: distributional structure - how frequently the referents of novel words occurred together - and visual context - whether the referents were seen on matching backgrounds. Across three experiments, we found that in addition to learning novel words, adults formed connections between frequently co-occurring objects. These findings indicate that learners exploit statistical regularities to form multiple types of associations during word learning.

  11. Learning to Read Words: Theory, Findings, and Issues

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ehri, Linnea C.

    2005-01-01

    Reading words may take several forms. Readers may utilize decoding, analogizing, or predicting to read unfamiliar words. Readers read familiar words by accessing them in memory, called sight word reading. With practice, all words come to be read automatically by sight, which is the most efficient, unobtrusive way to read words in text. The process…

  12. Beginners Remember Orthography when They Learn to Read Words: The Case of Doubled Letters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wright, Donna-Marie; Ehri, Linnea C.

    2007-01-01

    Sight word learning and memory were studied to clarify how early during development readers process visual letter patterns that are not dictated by phonology, and whether their word learning is influenced by the legality of letter patterns. Forty kindergartners and first graders were taught to read 12 words containing either single consonants…

  13. Feature Biases in Early Word Learning: Network Distinctiveness Predicts Age of Acquisition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Engelthaler, Tomas; Hills, Thomas T.

    2017-01-01

    Do properties of a word's features influence the order of its acquisition in early word learning? Combining the principles of mutual exclusivity and shape bias, the present work takes a network analysis approach to understanding how feature distinctiveness predicts the order of early word learning. Distance networks were built from nouns with edge…

  14. Professional Music Training and Novel Word Learning: From Faster Semantic Encoding to Longer-lasting Word Representations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dittinger, Eva; Barbaroux, Mylène; D'Imperio, Mariapaola; Jäncke, Lutz; Elmer, Stefan; Besson, Mireille

    2016-10-01

    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.

  15. Utterance-final position and pitch marking aid word learning in school-age children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Filippi, Piera; Laaha, Sabine; Fitch, W Tecumseh

    2017-08-01

    We investigated the effects of word order and prosody on word learning in school-age children. Third graders viewed photographs belonging to one of three semantic categories while hearing four-word nonsense utterances containing a target word. In the control condition, all words had the same pitch and, across trials, the position of the target word was varied systematically within each utterance. The only cue to word-meaning mapping was the co-occurrence of target words and referents. This cue was present in all conditions. In the Utterance-final condition, the target word always occurred in utterance-final position, and at the same fundamental frequency as all the other words of the utterance. In the Pitch peak condition, the position of the target word was varied systematically within each utterance across trials, and produced with pitch contrasts typical of infant-directed speech (IDS). In the Pitch peak + Utterance-final condition, the target word always occurred in utterance-final position, and was marked with a pitch contrast typical of IDS. Word learning occurred in all conditions except the control condition. Moreover, learning performance was significantly higher than that observed with simple co-occurrence ( control condition) only for the Pitch peak + Utterance-final condition. We conclude that, for school-age children, the combination of words' utterance-final alignment and pitch enhancement boosts word learning.

  16. Stroop effects from newly learned color words: effects of memory consolidation and episodic context.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geukes, Sebastian; Gaskell, M Gareth; Zwitserlood, Pienie

    2015-01-01

    The Stroop task is an excellent tool to test whether reading a word automatically activates its associated meaning, and it has been widely used in mono- and bilingual contexts. Despite of its ubiquity, the task has not yet been employed to test the automaticity of recently established word-concept links in novel-word-learning studies, under strict experimental control of learning and testing conditions. In three experiments, we thus paired novel words with native language (German) color words via lexical association and subsequently tested these words in a manual version of the Stroop task. Two crucial findings emerged: When novel word Stroop trials appeared intermixed among native-word trials, the novel-word Stroop effect was observed immediately after the learning phase. If no native color words were present in a Stroop block, the novel-word Stroop effect only emerged 24 h later. These results suggest that the automatic availability of a novel word's meaning depends either on supportive context from the learning episode and/or on sufficient time for memory consolidation. We discuss how these results can be reconciled with the complementary learning systems account of word learning.

  17. Children with ASD Can Use Gaze in Support of Word Recognition and Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGregor, Karla K.; Rost, Gwyneth; Arenas, Rick; Farris-Trimble, Ashley; Stiles, Derek

    2013-01-01

    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

  18. Pigeons acquire multiple categories in parallel via associative learning: a parallel to human word learning?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wasserman, Edward A; Brooks, Daniel I; McMurray, Bob

    2015-03-01

    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. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. Reproducing and learning new algebraic operations on word embeddings using genetic programming

    OpenAIRE

    Santana, Roberto

    2017-01-01

    Word-vector representations associate a high dimensional real-vector to every word from a corpus. Recently, neural-network based methods have been proposed for learning this representation from large corpora. This type of word-to-vector embedding is able to keep, in the learned vector space, some of the syntactic and semantic relationships present in the original word corpus. This, in turn, serves to address different types of language classification tasks by doing algebraic operations define...

  20. Neurophysiological evidence for the interplay of speech segmentation and word-referent mapping during novel word learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    François, Clément; Cunillera, Toni; Garcia, Enara; Laine, Matti; Rodriguez-Fornells, Antoni

    2017-04-01

    Learning a new language requires the identification of word units from continuous speech (the speech segmentation problem) and mapping them onto conceptual representation (the word to world mapping problem). Recent behavioral studies have revealed that the statistical properties found within and across modalities can serve as cues for both processes. However, segmentation and mapping have been largely studied separately, and thus it remains unclear whether both processes can be accomplished at the same time and if they share common neurophysiological features. To address this question, we recorded EEG of 20 adult participants during both an audio alone speech segmentation task and an audiovisual word-to-picture association task. The participants were tested for both the implicit detection of online mismatches (structural auditory and visual semantic violations) as well as for the explicit recognition of words and word-to-picture associations. The ERP results from the learning phase revealed a delayed learning-related fronto-central negativity (FN400) in the audiovisual condition compared to the audio alone condition. Interestingly, while online structural auditory violations elicited clear MMN/N200 components in the audio alone condition, visual-semantic violations induced meaning-related N400 modulations in the audiovisual condition. The present results support the idea that speech segmentation and meaning mapping can take place in parallel and act in synergy to enhance novel word learning. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. The Word Frequency Effect on Second Language Vocabulary Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koirala, Cesar

    2015-01-01

    This study examines several linguistic factors as possible contributors to perceived word difficulty in second language learners in an experimental setting. The investigated factors include: (1) frequency of word usage in the first language, (2) word length, (3) number of syllables in a word, and (4) number of consonant clusters in a word. Word…

  2. Cross-modal working memory binding and L1-L2 word learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Shinmin; Allen, Richard J; Fang, Shin-Yi; Li, Ping

    2017-11-01

    The ability to create temporary binding representations of information from different sources in working memory has recently been found to relate to the development of monolingual word recognition in children. The current study explored this possible relationship in an adult word-learning context. We assessed whether the relationship between cross-modal working memory binding and lexical development would be observed in the learning of associations between unfamiliar spoken words and their semantic referents, and whether it would vary across experimental conditions in first- and second-language word learning. A group of English monolinguals were recruited to learn 24 spoken disyllable Mandarin Chinese words in association with either familiar or novel objects as semantic referents. They also took a working memory task in which their ability to temporarily bind auditory-verbal and visual information was measured. Participants' performance on this task was uniquely linked to their learning and retention of words for both novel objects and for familiar objects. This suggests that, at least for spoken language, cross-modal working memory binding might play a similar role in second language-like (i.e., learning new words for familiar objects) and in more native-like situations (i.e., learning new words for novel objects). Our findings provide new evidence for the role of cross-modal working memory binding in L1 word learning and further indicate that early stages of picture-based word learning in L2 might rely on similar cognitive processes as in L1.

  3. Stroop effects from newly learned color words: Effects of memory consolidation and episodic context

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sebastian eGeukes

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available The Stroop task is an excellent tool to test whether reading a word automatically activates its associated meaning, and it has been widely used in mono- and bilingual contexts. Despite of its ubiquity, the task has not yet been employed to test the automaticity of recently established word-concept links in novel-word-learning studies, under strict experimental control of learning and testing conditions. In three experiments, we thus paired novel words with native language (German color words via lexical association and subsequently tested these words in a manual version of the Stroop task. Two crucial findings emerged: When novel word Stroop trials appeared intermixed among native-word trials, the novel-word Stroop effect was observed immediately after the learning phase. If no native color words were present in a Stroop block, the novel-word Stroop effect only emerged 24 hours later. These results suggest that the automatic availability of a novel word’s meaning depends either on supportive context from the learning episode and/or on sufficient time for memory consolidation. We discuss how these results can be reconciled with the complementary learning systems account of word learning.

  4. Help me if I can't: Social interaction effects in adult contextual word learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verga, Laura; Kotz, Sonja A

    2017-11-01

    A major challenge in second language acquisition is to build up new vocabulary. How is it possible to identify the meaning of a new word among several possible referents? Adult learners typically use contextual information, which reduces the number of possible referents a new word can have. Alternatively, a social partner may facilitate word learning by directing the learner's attention toward the correct new word meaning. While much is known about the role of this form of 'joint attention' in first language acquisition, little is known about its efficacy in second language acquisition. Consequently, we introduce and validate a novel visual word learning game to evaluate how joint attention affects the contextual learning of new words in a second language. Adult learners either acquired new words in a constant or variable sentence context by playing the game with a knowledgeable partner, or by playing the game alone on a computer. Results clearly show that participants who learned new words in social interaction (i) are faster in identifying a correct new word referent in variable sentence contexts, and (ii) temporally coordinate their behavior with a social partner. Testing the learned words in a post-learning recall or recognition task showed that participants, who learned interactively, better recognized words originally learned in a variable context. While this result may suggest that interactive learning facilitates the allocation of attention to a target referent, the differences in the performance during recognition and recall call for further studies investigating the effect of social interaction on learning performance. In summary, we provide first evidence on the role joint attention in second language learning. Furthermore, the new interactive learning game offers itself to further testing in complex neuroimaging research, where the lack of appropriate experimental set-ups has so far limited the investigation of the neural basis of adult word learning in

  5. A Dual-Route Model that Learns to Pronounce English Words

    Science.gov (United States)

    Remington, Roger W.; Miller, Craig S.; Null, Cynthia H. (Technical Monitor)

    1995-01-01

    This paper describes a model that learns to pronounce English words. Learning occurs in two modules: 1) a rule-based module that constructs pronunciations by phonetic analysis of the letter string, and 2) a whole-word module that learns to associate subsets of letters to the pronunciation, without phonetic analysis. In a simulation on a corpus of over 300 words the model produced pronunciation latencies consistent with the effects of word frequency and orthographic regularity observed in human data. Implications of the model for theories of visual word processing and reading instruction are discussed.

  6. Observational Word Learning: Beyond Propose-But-Verify and Associative Bean Counting.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roembke, Tanja; McMurray, Bob

    2016-04-01

    Learning new words is difficult. In any naming situation, there are multiple possible interpretations of a novel word. Recent approaches suggest that learners may solve this problem by tracking co-occurrence statistics between words and referents across multiple naming situations (e.g. Yu & Smith, 2007), overcoming the ambiguity in any one situation. Yet, there remains debate around the underlying mechanisms. We conducted two experiments in which learners acquired eight word-object mappings using cross-situational statistics while eye-movements were tracked. These addressed four unresolved questions regarding the learning mechanism. First, eye-movements during learning showed evidence that listeners maintain multiple hypotheses for a given word and bring them all to bear in the moment of naming. Second, trial-by-trial analyses of accuracy suggested that listeners accumulate continuous statistics about word/object mappings, over and above prior hypotheses they have about a word. Third, consistent, probabilistic context can impede learning, as false associations between words and highly co-occurring referents are formed. Finally, a number of factors not previously considered in prior analysis impact observational word learning: knowledge of the foils, spatial consistency of the target object, and the number of trials between presentations of the same word. This evidence suggests that observational word learning may derive from a combination of gradual statistical or associative learning mechanisms and more rapid real-time processes such as competition, mutual exclusivity and even inference or hypothesis testing.

  7. Insufficient Chunk Concatenation May Underlie Changes in Sleep-Dependent Consolidation of Motor Sequence Learning in Older Adults

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bottary, Ryan; Sonni, Akshata; Wright, David; Spencer, Rebecca M. C.

    2016-01-01

    Sleep enhances motor sequence learning (MSL) in young adults by concatenating subsequences ("chunks") formed during skill acquisition. To examine whether this process is reduced in aging, we assessed performance changes on the MSL task following overnight sleep or daytime wake in healthy young and older adults. Young adult performance…

  8. Twelve-Month-Olds Learn Novel Word-Object Pairings Differing Only in Stress Pattern

    Science.gov (United States)

    Curtin, Suzanne

    2009-01-01

    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…

  9. Children's Learning of Number Words in an Indigenous Farming-Foraging Group

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piantadosi, Steven T.; Jara-Ettinger, Julian; Gibson, Edward

    2014-01-01

    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…

  10. Novel Word Learning in Bilingual and Monolingual Infants: Evidence for a Bilingual Advantage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, Leher; Fu, Charlene S L; Tay, Zhi Wen; Golinkoff, Roberta Michnick

    2017-02-03

    Previous studies revealing that monolingual and bilingual infants learn similar sounding words with comparable success are largely based on prior investigations involving single-feature changes in the onset consonant of a word. There have been no investigations of bilingual infants' abilities to learn similar sounding words differentiated by vowels. In the current study, 18-month-old bilingual and monolingual infants (n = 90) were compared on their sensitivity to a vowel change when learning the meanings of words. Bilingual infants learned similar sounding words differing by a vowel contrast, whereas monolingual English- and Mandarin-learning infants did not. Findings are discussed in terms of early constraints on novel word learning in bilingual and monolingual infants. © 2017 The Authors. Child Development © 2017 Society for Research in Child Development, Inc.

  11. Vocalic and consonantal processing biases in early word-learning: Cross-language differences?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Højen, Anders; Nazzi, Thierry

    2010-01-01

    in word-learning in French-learning 20-month-olds using the same task. They failed again. On the other hand, ongoing tests indicate that Danish-learning 20-month-olds, as opposed to French-learning 16- or 20-month-olds, fail to use one-feature consonantal differences in word-learning. These results may....... The experiment made use of the same word-learning task as that used for French 16-month-olds. As opposed to the French-learning infants, the Danish-learning infants successfully learned the vowel pairs indicating sensitivity to small vocalic differences in word-learning. Experiment 2 tested the use of vowels...

  12. Bilingualism and Inhibitory Control Influence Statistical Learning of Novel Word Forms

    OpenAIRE

    Bartolotti, James; Marian, Viorica; Schroeder, Scott R.; Shook, Anthony

    2011-01-01

    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 langu...

  13. Situated Word Learning: Words of the Year (WsOY) and Social Studies Inquiry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heafner, Tina L.; Triplett, Nicholas; Handler, Laura; Massey, Dixie

    2018-01-01

    Current events influence public interest and drive Internet word searches. For over a decade, linguists and dictionary publishers have analyzed big data from Internet word searches to designate "Words of the Year" (WsOY). In this study, we examine how WsOY can foster critical digital literacy and illuminate essential aspects of inquiry…

  14. More Limitations to Monolingualism: Bilinguals Outperform Monolinguals in Implicit Word Learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Escudero, Paola; Mulak, Karen E; Fu, Charlene S L; Singh, Leher

    2016-01-01

    To succeed at cross-situational word learning, learners must infer word-object mappings by attending to the statistical co-occurrences of novel objects and labels across multiple encounters. While past studies have investigated this as a learning mechanism for infants and monolingual adults, bilinguals' cross-situational word learning abilities have yet to be tested. Here, we compared monolinguals' and bilinguals' performance on a cross-situational word learning paradigm that featured phonologically distinct word pairs (e.g., BON-DEET) and phonologically similar word pairs that varied by a single consonant or vowel segment (e.g., BON-TON, DEET-DIT, respectively). Both groups learned the novel word-referent mappings, providing evidence that cross-situational word learning is a learning strategy also available to bilingual adults. Furthermore, bilinguals were overall more accurate than monolinguals. This supports that bilingualism fosters a wide range of cognitive advantages that may benefit implicit word learning. Additionally, response patterns to the different trial types revealed a relative difficulty for vowel minimal pairs than consonant minimal pairs, replicating the pattern found in monolinguals by Escudero et al. (2016) in a different English accent. Specifically, all participants failed to learn vowel contrasts differentiated by vowel height. We discuss evidence for this bilingual advantage as a language-specific or general advantage.

  15. Using variability to guide dimensional weighting: Associative mechanisms in early word learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Apfelbaum, Keith S.; McMurray, Bob

    2013-01-01

    At 14 months, children appear to struggle to apply their fairly well developed speech perception abilities to learning similar sounding words (e.g. bih/dih; Stager & Werker, 1997). However, variability in non-phonetic aspects of the training stimuli seems to aid word learning at this age. Extant theories of early word learning cannot account for this benefit of variability. We offer a simple explanation for this range of effects based on associative learning. Simulations suggest that if infants encode both non-contrastive information (e.g. cues to speaker voice) and meaningful linguistic cues (e.g. place of articulation or voicing), then associative learning mechanisms predict these variability effects in early word learning. Crucially, this means that despite the importance of task variables in predicting performance, this body of work shows that phonological categories are still developing in this age, and that the structure of non-informative cues has critical influences on word learning abilities. PMID:21609356

  16. Pacing, Pixels, and Paper: Flexibility in Learning Words from Flashcards

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kara Sage

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available The present study focused on how self-control over pace might help learners successfully extract information from digital learning aids. Past research has indicated that too much control over pace can be overwhelming, but too little control over pace can be ineffective. Within the popular self-testing domain of flashcards, we sought to elucidate the optimal level of user control for digital learning and compare learning outcomes between paper and digital flashcards. College students learned vocabulary from paper flashcards or one of several digital flashcard versions and were scored on their memory recall and asked about their perceptions of the learning process. With digital flashcards, students were randomly assigned to an automatic slideshow of cards with no user control, automatic slideshow with pre-set pauses, automatic slideshow where users could press the spacebar to pause at any time, or a self-paced slideshow with complete user control. Users reported feeling more in control when indeed having some control, but ultimately memory recall, cognitive load, and satisfaction were similar across the five versions. However, memory recall was positively related to user satisfaction with their specific flashcard set, and negatively related to users’ perceived mental effort and difficulty. Notably, whether paper or digital, students showed individual variability in how they advanced through the words. This research adds to the educational literature by suggesting that paper and digital flashcards are equally viable options for students. Given differences between individual users and the connection between satisfaction and recall, individualistic options that offer, but do not force, some control over pace seem ideal. Paper flashcards may already include such options, and e-flashcards should offer similar adaptive features to appeal to a wide variety of users.

  17. Teaching Community College Students Strategies for Learning Unknown Words as They Read Expository Text

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leslie Craigo

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available An experiment was conducted to investigate methods that enable college students to learn the meaning of unknown words as they read discipline-specific academic text. Forty-one college students read specific passages aloud during three sessions. Participants were randomly assigned to three vocabulary learning interventions or a control condition. The interventions involved applying context, morphemic, and syntactic strategies; applying definitions; or applying both strategies and definitions to determine word meanings. Word learning and comprehension were measured during the interventions and in a transfer task to assess treatment effects on independent text reading. Results revealed that students in all three intervention groups outperformed controls in learning words and comprehending passages. However, the treatment groups did not differ from controls on the transfer task. Teaching both strategies and definitions was especially effective for learning unknown words and comprehending text containing those words.

  18. Does sound structure affect word learning? An eye-tracking study of Danish learning toddlers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Trecca, Fabio; Bleses, Dorthe; Madsen, Thomas O.

    2018-01-01

    Previous research has shown that Danish-learning children lag behind in early lexical acquisition compared with children learning a number of other languages. This delay has been ascribed to the opaque phonetic structure of Danish, which appears to have fewer reliable segmentation cues than other...... by the phonetic opacity of the speech stimuli. We suggest that this finding results from the interplay of a perceptually challenging speech input and a slower onset of early vocabulary experience, which in turn may delay the onset of word learning skills in Danish-learning children....

  19. A computational model associating learning process, word attributes, and age of acquisition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hidaka, Shohei

    2013-01-01

    We propose a new model-based approach linking word learning to the age of acquisition (AoA) of words; a new computational tool for understanding the relationships among word learning processes, psychological attributes, and word AoAs as measures of vocabulary growth. The computational model developed describes the distinct statistical relationships between three theoretical factors underpinning word learning and AoA distributions. Simply put, this model formulates how different learning processes, characterized by change in learning rate over time and/or by the number of exposures required to acquire a word, likely result in different AoA distributions depending on word type. We tested the model in three respects. The first analysis showed that the proposed model accounts for empirical AoA distributions better than a standard alternative. The second analysis demonstrated that the estimated learning parameters well predicted the psychological attributes, such as frequency and imageability, of words. The third analysis illustrated that the developmental trend predicted by our estimated learning parameters was consistent with relevant findings in the developmental literature on word learning in children. We further discuss the theoretical implications of our model-based approach.

  20. Acquiring concepts and features of novel words by two types of learning: direct mapping and inference.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Shuang; Wang, Lin; Yang, Yufang

    2014-04-01

    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. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. A "bat" is easier to learn than a "tab": effects of relative phonotactic frequency on infant word learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gonzalez-Gomez, Nayeli; Poltrock, Silvana; Nazzi, Thierry

    2013-01-01

    Many studies have shown that during the first year of life infants start learning the prosodic, phonetic and phonotactic properties of their native language. In parallel, infants start associating sound sequences with semantic representations. However, the question of how these two processes interact remains largely unknown. The current study explores whether (and when) the relative phonotactic probability of a sound sequence in the native language has an impact on infants' word learning. We exploit the fact that Labial-Coronal (LC) words are more frequent than Coronal-Labial (CL) words in French, and that French-learning infants prefer LC over CL sequences at 10 months of age, to explore the possibility that LC structures might be learned more easily and thus at an earlier age than CL structures. Eye movements of French-learning 14- and 16-month-olds were recorded while they watched animated cartoons in a word learning task. The experiment involved four trials testing LC sequences and four trials testing CL sequences. Our data reveal that 16-month-olds were able to learn the LC and CL words, while14-month-olds were only able to learn the LC words, which are the words with the more frequent phonotactic pattern. The present results provide evidence that infants' knowledge of their native language phonotactic patterns influences their word learning: Words with a frequent phonotactic structure could be acquired at an earlier age than those with a lower probability. Developmental changes are discussed and integrated with previous findings.

  2. Learning new words from storybooks: an efficacy study with at-risk kindergartners.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Justice, Laura M; Meier, Joanne; Walpole, Sharon

    2005-01-01

    The extant literature suggests that exposure to novel vocabulary words through repeated readings of storybooks influences children's word learning, and that adult elaboration of words in context can accelerate vocabulary growth. This study examined the influence of small-group storybook reading sessions on the acquisition of vocabulary words for at-risk kindergartners, and the impact of word elaboration on learning. An additional goal was to study differential responses to treatment for children with high versus low vocabulary skill. Using a pretest-posttest comparison group research design, 57 kindergartners were randomly assigned to a treatment (n = 29) or comparison (n = 28) group. Children were also differentiated into high (n = 31) versus low (n = 26) vocabulary skill groups using scores on a standardized receptive vocabulary test. Children in the treatment group completed 20 small-group storybook reading sessions during which they were exposed to 60 novel words randomly assigned to non-elaborated and elaborated conditions. Pre- and posttest examined the quality of children's definitions for the 60 novel words. Overall, word-learning gains were modest. Children in the treatment group made significantly greater gains in elaborated words relative to children in the comparison group; no influence of storybook reading exposure was seen for non-elaborated words. Children with low vocabulary scores made the greatest gains on elaborated words. Suggestions are offered for using storybooks as a clinical tool for fostering vocabulary development. As an efficacy study, results should inform future applied research on word learning for at-risk children.

  3. Examining the Conditions of Using an On-Line Dictionary to Learn Words and Comprehend Texts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dilenschneider, Robert Francis

    2018-01-01

    This study investigated three look-up conditions for language learners to learn unknown target words and comprehend a reading passage when their attention is transferred away to an on-line dictionary. The research questions focused on how each look-up condition impacted the recall and recognition of word forms, word meanings, and passage…

  4. Extracting phonological patterns for L2 word learning: the effect of poor phonological awareness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Chieh-Fang

    2014-10-01

    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.

  5. The Inhibitory Mechanism in Learning Ambiguous Words in a Second Language

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Baoguo Chen

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Ambiguous words are hard to learn, yet little is known about what causes this difficulty. The current study aimed to investigate the relationship between the representations of new and prior meanings of ambiguous words in second language (L2 learning, and to explore the function of inhibitory control on L2 ambiguous word learning at the initial stage of learning. During a 4-day learning phase, Chinese–English bilinguals learned 30 novel English words for 30 min per day using bilingual flashcards. Half of the words to be learned were unambiguous (had one meaning and half were ambiguous (had two semantically unrelated meanings learned in sequence. Inhibitory control was introduced as a subject variable measured by a Stroop task. The semantic representations established for the studied items were probed using a cross-language semantic relatedness judgment task, in which the learned English words served as the prime, and the targets were either semantically related or unrelated to the prime. Results showed that response latencies for the second meaning of ambiguous words were slower than for the first meaning and for unambiguous words, and that performance on only the second meaning of ambiguous words was predicted by inhibitory control ability. These results suggest that, at the initial stage of L2 ambiguous word learning, the representation of the second meaning is weak, probably interfered with by the representation of the prior learned meaning. Moreover, inhibitory control may modulate learning of the new meanings, such that individuals with better inhibitory control may more effectively suppress interference from the first meaning, and thus learn the new meaning more quickly.

  6. The Inhibitory Mechanism in Learning Ambiguous Words in a Second Language.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Yao; Wu, Junjie; Dunlap, Susan; Chen, Baoguo

    2017-01-01

    Ambiguous words are hard to learn, yet little is known about what causes this difficulty. The current study aimed to investigate the relationship between the representations of new and prior meanings of ambiguous words in second language (L2) learning, and to explore the function of inhibitory control on L2 ambiguous word learning at the initial stage of learning. During a 4-day learning phase, Chinese-English bilinguals learned 30 novel English words for 30 min per day using bilingual flashcards. Half of the words to be learned were unambiguous (had one meaning) and half were ambiguous (had two semantically unrelated meanings learned in sequence). Inhibitory control was introduced as a subject variable measured by a Stroop task. The semantic representations established for the studied items were probed using a cross-language semantic relatedness judgment task, in which the learned English words served as the prime, and the targets were either semantically related or unrelated to the prime. Results showed that response latencies for the second meaning of ambiguous words were slower than for the first meaning and for unambiguous words, and that performance on only the second meaning of ambiguous words was predicted by inhibitory control ability. These results suggest that, at the initial stage of L2 ambiguous word learning, the representation of the second meaning is weak, probably interfered with by the representation of the prior learned meaning. Moreover, inhibitory control may modulate learning of the new meanings, such that individuals with better inhibitory control may more effectively suppress interference from the first meaning, and thus learn the new meaning more quickly.

  7. Statistical word learning in children with autism spectrum disorder and specific language impairment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haebig, Eileen; Saffran, Jenny R; Ellis Weismer, Susan

    2017-11-01

    Word learning is an important component of language development that influences child outcomes across multiple domains. Despite the importance of word knowledge, word-learning mechanisms are poorly understood in children with specific language impairment (SLI) and children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). This study examined underlying mechanisms of word learning, specifically, statistical learning and fast-mapping, in school-aged children with typical and atypical development. Statistical learning was assessed through a word segmentation task and fast-mapping was examined in an object-label association task. We also examined children's ability to map meaning onto newly segmented words in a third task that combined exposure to an artificial language and a fast-mapping task. Children with SLI had poorer performance on the word segmentation and fast-mapping tasks relative to the typically developing and ASD groups, who did not differ from one another. However, when children with SLI were exposed to an artificial language with phonemes used in the subsequent fast-mapping task, they successfully learned more words than in the isolated fast-mapping task. There was some evidence that word segmentation abilities are associated with word learning in school-aged children with typical development and ASD, but not SLI. Follow-up analyses also examined performance in children with ASD who did and did not have a language impairment. Children with ASD with language impairment evidenced intact statistical learning abilities, but subtle weaknesses in fast-mapping abilities. As the Procedural Deficit Hypothesis (PDH) predicts, children with SLI have impairments in statistical learning. However, children with SLI also have impairments in fast-mapping. Nonetheless, they are able to take advantage of additional phonological exposure to boost subsequent word-learning performance. In contrast to the PDH, children with ASD appear to have intact statistical learning, regardless of

  8. Word learning in adults with second language experience: Effects of phonological and referent familiarity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaushanskaya, Margarita; Yoo, Jeewon; Van Hecke, Stephanie

    2014-01-01

    Purpose The goal of this research was to examine whether phonological familiarity exerts different effects on novel word learning for familiar vs. 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 knowledge learned phonologically-familiar novel words (constructed using English sounds) or phonologically-unfamiliar novel words (constructed using non-English and non-Spanish sounds) in association with either familiar or unfamiliar referents. Retention was tested via a forced-choice recognition-task. A median-split procedure identified high-ability and low-ability word-learners in each condition, and the two groups were compared on measures of second-language experience. Results Findings suggest that the ability to accurately match newly-learned novel names to their appropriate referents is facilitated by phonological familiarity only for familiar referents but not for unfamiliar referents. Moreover, more extensive second-language learning experience characterized superior learners primarily in one word-learning condition: Where phonologically-unfamiliar novel words were paired with familiar referents. Conclusions Together, these findings indicate that phonological familiarity facilitates novel word learning only for familiar referents, and that experience with learning a second language may have a specific impact on novel vocabulary learning in adults. PMID:22992709

  9. Word learning in adults with second-language experience: effects of phonological and referent familiarity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaushanskaya, Margarita; Yoo, Jeewon; Van Hecke, Stephanie

    2013-04-01

    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. Eighty-one adult native English speakers with various levels of Spanish knowledge learned phonologically familiar novel words (constructed using English sounds) or phonologically unfamiliar novel words (constructed using non-English and non-Spanish sounds) in association with either familiar or unfamiliar referents. Retention was tested via a forced-choice recognition task. A median-split procedure identified high-ability and low-ability word learners in each condition, and the two groups were compared on measures of second-language experience. Findings suggest that the ability to accurately match newly learned novel names to their appropriate referents is facilitated by phonological familiarity only for familiar referents but not for unfamiliar referents. Moreover, more extensive second-language learning experience characterized superior learners primarily in one word-learning condition: in which phonologically unfamiliar novel words were paired with familiar referents. Together, these findings indicate that phonological familiarity facilitates novel word learning only for familiar referents and that experience with learning a second language may have a specific impact on novel vocabulary learning in adults.

  10. Learning Word Embeddings with Chi-Square Weights for Healthcare Tweet Classification

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sicong Kuang

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Twitter is a popular source for the monitoring of healthcare information and public disease. However, there exists much noise in the tweets. Even though appropriate keywords appear in the tweets, they do not guarantee the identification of a truly health-related tweet. Thus, the traditional keyword-based classification task is largely ineffective. Algorithms for word embeddings have proved to be useful in many natural language processing (NLP tasks. We introduce two algorithms based on an existing word embedding learning algorithm: the continuous bag-of-words model (CBOW. We apply the proposed algorithms to the task of recognizing healthcare-related tweets. In the CBOW model, the vector representation of words is learned from their contexts. To simplify the computation, the context is represented by an average of all words inside the context window. However, not all words in the context window contribute equally to the prediction of the target word. Greedily incorporating all the words in the context window will largely limit the contribution of the useful semantic words and bring noisy or irrelevant words into the learning process, while existing word embedding algorithms also try to learn a weighted CBOW model. Their weights are based on existing pre-defined syntactic rules while ignoring the task of the learned embedding. We propose learning weights based on the words’ relative importance in the classification task. Our intuition is that such learned weights place more emphasis on words that have comparatively more to contribute to the later task. We evaluate the embeddings learned from our algorithms on two healthcare-related datasets. The experimental results demonstrate that embeddings learned from the proposed algorithms outperform existing techniques by a relative accuracy improvement of over 9%.

  11. Unsupervised Learning of Word-Sequence Representations from Scratch via Convolutional Tensor Decomposition

    OpenAIRE

    Huang, Furong; Anandkumar, Animashree

    2016-01-01

    Unsupervised text embeddings extraction is crucial for text understanding in machine learning. Word2Vec and its variants have received substantial success in mapping words with similar syntactic or semantic meaning to vectors close to each other. However, extracting context-aware word-sequence embedding remains a challenging task. Training over large corpus is difficult as labels are difficult to get. More importantly, it is challenging for pre-trained models to obtain word-...

  12. Effect of Personalisation of Instruction on Students’ Motivation to learn Mathematics Word Problems in Nigeria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adeneye Olarewaju Awofala

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available This study investigated the effect of personalisation of instruction on the motivation to learn mathematics word problems of 450 senior secondary students in Nigeria within the blueprint of quasi-experimental research of Solomon Four non-equivalent control group design. It also examined the influence of gender on motivation to learn mathematics word problems and personalisation was accomplished by incorporating selected information with students’ personal preferences into their mathematics word problems. Motivation to learn mathematics word problems was measured by the mathematics word problems motivation questionnaire and data collected for the study were analysed using the independent samples t-test and one way ANOVA. The results showed significant main effect of personalization of instruction on students’ motivation to learn mathematics word problems whereas no significant main effect of gender was found on the dependent measure.

  13. The acquisition of simple associations as observed in color-word contingency learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Olivia Y-H; MacLeod, Colin M

    2018-01-01

    Three experiments investigated the learning of simple associations in a color-word contingency task. Participants responded manually to the print colors of 3 words, with each word associated strongly to 1 of the 3 colors and weakly to the other 2 colors. Despite the words being irrelevant, response times to high-contingency stimuli and to low-contingency stimuli quickly diverged. This high-low difference remained quite constant over successive blocks of trials, evidence of stable contingency learning. Inclusion of a baseline condition-an item having no color-word contingency-permitted separation of the contingency learning effect into 2 components: a cost due to low contingency and a benefit due to high contingency. Both cost and benefit were quick to acquire, quick to extinguish, and quick to reacquire. The color-word contingency task provides a simple way to directly study the learning of associations. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2018 APA, all rights reserved).

  14. A joint model of word segmentation and meaning acquisition through cross-situational learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Räsänen, Okko; Rasilo, Heikki

    2015-10-01

    Human infants learn meanings for spoken words in complex interactions with other people, but the exact learning mechanisms are unknown. Among researchers, a widely studied learning mechanism is called cross-situational learning (XSL). In XSL, word meanings are learned when learners accumulate statistical information between spoken words and co-occurring objects or events, allowing the learner to overcome referential uncertainty after having sufficient experience with individually ambiguous scenarios. Existing models in this area have mainly assumed that the learner is capable of segmenting words from speech before grounding them to their referential meaning, while segmentation itself has been treated relatively independently of the meaning acquisition. In this article, we argue that XSL is not just a mechanism for word-to-meaning mapping, but that it provides strong cues for proto-lexical word segmentation. If a learner directly solves the correspondence problem between continuous speech input and the contextual referents being talked about, segmentation of the input into word-like units emerges as a by-product of the learning. We present a theoretical model for joint acquisition of proto-lexical segments and their meanings without assuming a priori knowledge of the language. We also investigate the behavior of the model using a computational implementation, making use of transition probability-based statistical learning. Results from simulations show that the model is not only capable of replicating behavioral data on word learning in artificial languages, but also shows effective learning of word segments and their meanings from continuous speech. Moreover, when augmented with a simple familiarity preference during learning, the model shows a good fit to human behavioral data in XSL tasks. These results support the idea of simultaneous segmentation and meaning acquisition and show that comprehensive models of early word segmentation should take referential word

  15. Fast Brain Plasticity during Word Learning in Musically-Trained Children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dittinger, Eva; Chobert, Julie; Ziegler, Johannes C.; Besson, Mireille

    2017-01-01

    Children learn new words every day and this ability requires auditory perception, phoneme discrimination, attention, associative learning and semantic memory. Based on previous results showing that some of these functions are enhanced by music training, we investigated learning of novel words through picture-word associations in musically-trained and control children (8–12 year-old) to determine whether music training would positively influence word learning. Results showed that musically-trained children outperformed controls in a learning paradigm that included picture-sound matching and semantic associations. Moreover, the differences between unexpected and expected learned words, as reflected by the N200 and N400 effects, were larger in children with music training compared to controls after only 3 min of learning the meaning of novel words. In line with previous results in adults, these findings clearly demonstrate a correlation between music training and better word learning. It is argued that these benefits reflect both bottom-up and top-down influences. The present learning paradigm might provide a useful dynamic diagnostic tool to determine which perceptive and cognitive functions are impaired in children with learning difficulties. PMID:28553213

  16. Fast Brain Plasticity during Word Learning in Musically-Trained Children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dittinger, Eva; Chobert, Julie; Ziegler, Johannes C; Besson, Mireille

    2017-01-01

    Children learn new words every day and this ability requires auditory perception, phoneme discrimination, attention, associative learning and semantic memory. Based on previous results showing that some of these functions are enhanced by music training, we investigated learning of novel words through picture-word associations in musically-trained and control children (8-12 year-old) to determine whether music training would positively influence word learning. Results showed that musically-trained children outperformed controls in a learning paradigm that included picture-sound matching and semantic associations. Moreover, the differences between unexpected and expected learned words, as reflected by the N200 and N400 effects, were larger in children with music training compared to controls after only 3 min of learning the meaning of novel words. In line with previous results in adults, these findings clearly demonstrate a correlation between music training and better word learning. It is argued that these benefits reflect both bottom-up and top-down influences. The present learning paradigm might provide a useful dynamic diagnostic tool to determine which perceptive and cognitive functions are impaired in children with learning difficulties.

  17. Fast Brain Plasticity during Word Learning in Musically-Trained Children

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eva Dittinger

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Children learn new words every day and this ability requires auditory perception, phoneme discrimination, attention, associative learning and semantic memory. Based on previous results showing that some of these functions are enhanced by music training, we investigated learning of novel words through picture-word associations in musically-trained and control children (8–12 year-old to determine whether music training would positively influence word learning. Results showed that musically-trained children outperformed controls in a learning paradigm that included picture-sound matching and semantic associations. Moreover, the differences between unexpected and expected learned words, as reflected by the N200 and N400 effects, were larger in children with music training compared to controls after only 3 min of learning the meaning of novel words. In line with previous results in adults, these findings clearly demonstrate a correlation between music training and better word learning. It is argued that these benefits reflect both bottom-up and top-down influences. The present learning paradigm might provide a useful dynamic diagnostic tool to determine which perceptive and cognitive functions are impaired in children with learning difficulties.

  18. When Actions Speak Too Much Louder than Words: Hand Gestures Disrupt Word Learning when Phonetic Demands Are High

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelly, Spencer D.; Lee, Angela L.

    2012-01-01

    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.…

  19. Morphing Images: A Potential Tool for Teaching Word Recognition to Children with Severe Learning Difficulties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sheehy, Kieron

    2005-01-01

    Children with severe learning difficulties who fail to begin word recognition can learn to recognise pictures and symbols relatively easily. However, finding an effective means of using pictures to teach word recognition has proved problematic. This research explores the use of morphing software to support the transition from picture to word…

  20. Word-Level Information Influences Phonetic Learning in Adults and Infants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feldman, Naomi H.; Myers, Emily B.; White, Katherine S.; Griffiths, Thomas L.; Morgan, James L.

    2013-01-01

    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…

  1. Young Children's Use of Contrast in Word Learning: The Case of Proper Names

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hall, D. Geoffrey; Rhemtulla, Mijke

    2014-01-01

    Recent research has established that contrast can exert a powerful effect on early word learning. This study examined the role of contrast in young children's ability to learn proper names. Preschoolers heard a novel word for an unfamiliar stuffed animal in the presence of a second stuffed animal of either the same or a different kind.…

  2. Investigating Word Learning in Fragile X Syndrome: A Fast-Mapping Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDuffie, Andrea; Kover, Sara T.; Hagerman, Randi; Abbeduto, Leonard

    2013-01-01

    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…

  3. Nonword Repetition and Vocabulary Knowledge as Predictors of Children's Phonological and Semantic Word Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adlof, Suzanne M.; Patten, Hannah

    2017-01-01

    Purpose: This study examined the unique and shared variance that nonword repetition and vocabulary knowledge contribute to children's ability to learn new words. Multiple measures of word learning were used to assess recall and recognition of phonological and semantic information. Method: Fifty children, with a mean age of 8 years (range 5-12…

  4. Accuracy Feedback Improves Word Learning from Context: Evidence from a Meaning-Generation Task

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frishkoff, Gwen A.; Collins-Thompson, Kevyn; Hodges, Leslie; Crossley, Scott

    2016-01-01

    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…

  5. Developmental Constraints on Learning Artificial Grammars with Fixed, Flexible and Free Word Order

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Iga Nowak

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Human learning, although highly flexible and efficient, is constrained in ways that facilitate or impede the acquisition of certain systems of information. Some such constraints, active during infancy and childhood, have been proposed to account for the apparent ease with which typically developing children acquire language. In a series of experiments, we investigated the role of developmental constraints on learning artificial grammars with a distinction between shorter and relatively frequent words (‘function words,’ F-words and longer and less frequent words (‘content words,’ C-words. We constructed 4 finite-state grammars, in which the order of F-words, relative to C-words, was either fixed (F-words always occupied the same positions in a string, flexible (every F-word always followed a C-word, or free. We exposed adults (N = 84 and kindergarten children (N = 100 to strings from each of these artificial grammars, and we assessed their ability to recognize strings with the same structure, but a different vocabulary. Adults were better at recognizing strings when regularities were available (i.e., fixed and flexible order grammars, while children were better at recognizing strings from the grammars consistent with the attested distribution of function and content words in natural languages (i.e., flexible and free order grammars. These results provide evidence for a link between developmental constraints on learning and linguistic typology.

  6. Developmental Constraints on Learning Artificial Grammars with Fixed, Flexible and Free Word Order.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nowak, Iga; Baggio, Giosuè

    2017-01-01

    Human learning, although highly flexible and efficient, is constrained in ways that facilitate or impede the acquisition of certain systems of information. Some such constraints, active during infancy and childhood, have been proposed to account for the apparent ease with which typically developing children acquire language. In a series of experiments, we investigated the role of developmental constraints on learning artificial grammars with a distinction between shorter and relatively frequent words ('function words,' F-words) and longer and less frequent words ('content words,' C-words). We constructed 4 finite-state grammars, in which the order of F-words, relative to C-words, was either fixed (F-words always occupied the same positions in a string), flexible (every F-word always followed a C-word), or free . We exposed adults ( N = 84) and kindergarten children ( N = 100) to strings from each of these artificial grammars, and we assessed their ability to recognize strings with the same structure, but a different vocabulary. Adults were better at recognizing strings when regularities were available (i.e., fixed and flexible order grammars), while children were better at recognizing strings from the grammars consistent with the attested distribution of function and content words in natural languages (i.e., flexible and free order grammars). These results provide evidence for a link between developmental constraints on learning and linguistic typology.

  7. Vocabulary knowledge mediates the link between socioeconomic status and word learning in grade school.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maguire, Mandy J; Schneider, Julie M; Middleton, Anna E; Ralph, Yvonne; Lopez, Michael; Ackerman, Robert A; Abel, Alyson D

    2018-02-01

    The relationship between children's slow vocabulary growth and the family's low socioeconomic status (SES) has been well documented. However, previous studies have often focused on infants or preschoolers and primarily used static measures of vocabulary at multiple time points. To date, there is no research investigating whether SES predicts a child's word learning abilities in grade school and, if so, what mediates this relationship. In this study, 68 children aged 8-15 years performed a written word learning from context task that required using the surrounding text to identify the meaning of an unknown word. Results revealed that vocabulary knowledge significantly mediated the relationship between SES (as measured by maternal education) and word learning. This was true despite the fact that the words in the linguistic context surrounding the target word are typically acquired well before 8 years of age. When controlling for vocabulary, word learning from written context was not predicted by differences in reading comprehension, decoding, or working memory. These findings reveal that differences in vocabulary growth between grade school children from low and higher SES homes are likely related to differences in the process of word learning more than knowledge of surrounding words or reading skills. Specifically, children from lower SES homes are not as effective at using known vocabulary to build a robust semantic representation of incoming text to identify the meaning of an unknown word. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. Predictive coding accelerates word recognition and learning in the early stages of language development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ylinen, Sari; Bosseler, Alexis; Junttila, Katja; Huotilainen, Minna

    2017-11-01

    The ability to predict future events in the environment and learn from them is a fundamental component of adaptive behavior across species. Here we propose that inferring predictions facilitates speech processing and word learning in the early stages of language development. Twelve- and 24-month olds' electrophysiological brain responses to heard syllables are faster and more robust when the preceding word context predicts the ending of a familiar word. For unfamiliar, novel word forms, however, word-expectancy violation generates a prediction error response, the strength of which significantly correlates with children's vocabulary scores at 12 months. These results suggest that predictive coding may accelerate word recognition and support early learning of novel words, including not only the learning of heard word forms but also their mapping to meanings. Prediction error may mediate learning via attention, since infants' attention allocation to the entire learning situation in natural environments could account for the link between prediction error and the understanding of word meanings. On the whole, the present results on predictive coding support the view that principles of brain function reported across domains in humans and non-human animals apply to language and its development in the infant brain. A video abstract of this article can be viewed at: http://hy.fi/unitube/video/e1cbb495-41d8-462e-8660-0864a1abd02c. [Correction added on 27 January 2017, after first online publication: The video abstract link was added.]. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  9. Slow Mapping: Color Word Learning as a Gradual Inductive Process

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wagner, Katie; Dobkins, Karen; Barner, David

    2013-01-01

    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…

  10. The influence of clustering coefficient on word-learning: how groups of similar sounding words facilitate acquisition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldstein, Rutherford; Vitevitch, Michael S

    2014-01-01

    Clustering coefficient, C, measures the extent to which neighbors of a word are also neighbors of each other, and has been shown to influence speech production, speech perception, and several memory-related processes. In this study we examined how C influences word-learning. Participants were trained over three sessions at 1-week intervals, and tested with a picture-naming task on nonword-nonobject pairs. We found an advantage for novel words with high C (the neighbors of this novel word are likely to be neighbors with each other), but only after the 1-week retention period with no additional exposures to the stimuli. The results are consistent with the spreading-activation network-model of the lexicon proposed by Chan and Vitevitch (2009). The influence of C on various language-related processes suggests that characteristics of the individual word are not the only things that influence processing; rather, lexical processing may also be influenced by the relationships that exist among words in the lexicon.

  11. The influence of clustering coefficient on word-learning: how groups of similar sounding words facilitate acquisition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rudy eGoldstein

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Clustering coefficient, C, measures the extent to which neighbors of a word are also neighbors of each other, and has been shown to influence speech production, speech perception, and several memory-related processes. In this study we examined how C influences word-learning. Participants were trained over three sessions at one-week intervals, and tested with a picture-naming task on nonword-nonobject pairs. We found an advantage for novel words with high C (the neighbors of this novel word are likely to be neighbors with each other, but only after the one-week retention period with no additional exposures to the stimuli. The results are consistent with the spreading-activation network-model of the lexicon proposed by Chan & Vitevitch (2009. The influence of C on various language-related processes suggests that characteristics of the individual word are not the only things that influence processing; rather, lexical processing may also be influenced by the relationships that exist among words in the lexicon.

  12. Bilingualism and inhibitory control influence statistical learning of novel word forms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bartolotti, James; Marian, Viorica; Schroeder, Scott R; Shook, Anthony

    2011-01-01

    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 minimized. 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.

  13. Bilingualism and inhibitory control influence statistical learning of novel word forms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James eBartolotti

    2011-11-01

    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.

  14. Online lexical competition during spoken word recognition and word learning in children and adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henderson, Lisa; Weighall, Anna; Brown, Helen; Gaskell, Gareth

    2013-01-01

    Lexical competition that occurs as speech unfolds is a hallmark of adult oral language comprehension crucial to rapid incremental speech processing. This study used pause detection to examine whether lexical competition operates similarly at 7-8 years and tested variables that influence "online" lexical activity in adults. Children (n = 20) and adults (n = 17) were slower to detect pauses in familiar words with later uniqueness points. Faster latencies were obtained for words with late uniqueness points in constraining compared with neutral sentences; no such effect was observed for early unique words. Following exposure to novel competitors ("biscal"), children (n = 18) and adults (n = 18) showed competition for existing words with early uniqueness points ("biscuit") after 24 hr. Thus, online lexical competition effects are remarkably similar across development. © 2013 The Authors. Child Development © 2013 Society for Research in Child Development, Inc.

  15. Learn locally, think globally. Exemplar variability supports higher-order generalization and word learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perry, Lynn K; Samuelson, Larissa K; Malloy, Lisa M; Schiffer, Ryan N

    2010-12-01

    Research suggests that variability of exemplars supports successful object categorization; however, the scope of variability's support at the level of higher-order generalization remains unexplored. Using a longitudinal study, we examined the role of exemplar variability in first- and second-order generalization in the context of nominal-category learning at an early age. Sixteen 18-month-old children were taught 12 categories. Half of the children were taught with sets of highly similar exemplars; the other half were taught with sets of dissimilar, variable exemplars. Participants' learning and generalization of trained labels and their development of more general word-learning biases were tested. All children were found to have learned labels for trained exemplars, but children trained with variable exemplars generalized to novel exemplars of these categories, developed a discriminating word-learning bias generalizing labels of novel solid objects by shape and labels of nonsolid objects by material, and accelerated in vocabulary acquisition. These findings demonstrate that object variability leads to better abstraction of individual and global category organization, which increases learning outside the laboratory.

  16. Learning Spoken Words via the Ears and Eyes: Evidence from 30-Month-Old Children

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mélanie Havy

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available From the very first moments of their lives, infants are able to link specific movements of the visual articulators to auditory speech signals. However, recent evidence indicates that infants focus primarily on auditory speech signals when learning new words. Here, we ask whether 30-month-old children are able to learn new words based solely on visible speech information, and whether information from both auditory and visual modalities is available after learning in only one modality. To test this, children were taught new lexical mappings. One group of children experienced the words in the auditory modality (i.e., acoustic form of the word with no accompanying face. Another group experienced the words in the visual modality (seeing a silent talking face. Lexical recognition was tested in either the learning modality or in the other modality. Results revealed successful word learning in either modality. Results further showed cross-modal recognition following an auditory-only, but not a visual-only, experience of the words. Together, these findings suggest that visible speech becomes increasingly informative for the purpose of lexical learning, but that an auditory-only experience evokes a cross-modal representation of the words.

  17. Dynamic versus Static Dictionary with and without Printed Focal Words in e-Book Reading as Facilitator for Word Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Korat, Ofra; Levin, Iris; Ben-Shabt, Anat; Shneor, Dafna; Bokovza, Limor

    2014-01-01

    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…

  18. Distinct Effects of Memory Retrieval and Articulatory Preparation when Learning and Accessing New Word Forms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nora, Anni; Renvall, Hanna; Kim, Jeong-Young; Service, Elisabet; Salmelin, Riitta

    2015-01-01

    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. PMID:25961571

  19. Nonword Repetition and Vocabulary Knowledge as Predictors of Children's Phonological and Semantic Word Learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adlof, Suzanne M; Patten, Hannah

    2017-03-01

    This study examined the unique and shared variance that nonword repetition and vocabulary knowledge contribute to children's ability to learn new words. Multiple measures of word learning were used to assess recall and recognition of phonological and semantic information. Fifty children, with a mean age of 8 years (range 5-12 years), completed experimental assessments of word learning and norm-referenced assessments of receptive and expressive vocabulary knowledge and nonword repetition skills. Hierarchical multiple regression analyses examined the variance in word learning that was explained by vocabulary knowledge and nonword repetition after controlling for chronological age. Together with chronological age, nonword repetition and vocabulary knowledge explained up to 44% of the variance in children's word learning. Nonword repetition was the stronger predictor of phonological recall, phonological recognition, and semantic recognition, whereas vocabulary knowledge was the stronger predictor of verbal semantic recall. These findings extend the results of past studies indicating that both nonword repetition skill and existing vocabulary knowledge are important for new word learning, but the relative influence of each predictor depends on the way word learning is measured. Suggestions for further research involving typically developing children and children with language or reading impairments are discussed.

  20. Sleep modulates word-pair learning but not motor sequence learning in healthy older adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, Jessica K; Baran, Bengi; Pace-Schott, Edward F; Ivry, Richard B; Spencer, Rebecca M C

    2012-05-01

    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. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. The role of character positional frequency on Chinese word learning during natural reading.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Feifei Liang

    Full Text Available Readers' eye movements were recorded to examine the role of character positional frequency on Chinese lexical acquisition during reading and its possible modulation by word spacing. In Experiment 1, three types of pseudowords were constructed based on each character's positional frequency, providing congruent, incongruent, and no positional word segmentation information. Each pseudoword was embedded into two sets of sentences, for the learning and the test phases. In the learning phase, half the participants read sentences in word-spaced format, and half in unspaced format. In the test phase, all participants read sentences in unspaced format. The results showed an inhibitory effect of character positional frequency upon the efficiency of word learning when processing incongruent pseudowords both in the learning and test phase, and also showed facilitatory effect of word spacing in the learning phase, but not at test. Most importantly, these two characteristics exerted independent influences on word segmentation. In Experiment 2, three analogous types of pseudowords were created whilst controlling for orthographic neighborhood size. The results of the two experiments were consistent, except that the effect of character positional frequency was absent in the test phase in Experiment 2. We argue that the positional frequency of a word's constituent characters may influence the character-to-word assignment in a process that likely incorporates both lexical segmentation and identification.

  2. tDCS Over the Motor Cortex Shows Differential Effects on Action and Object Words in Associative Word Learning in Healthy Aging

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Meret Branscheidt

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Healthy aging is accompanied by a continuous decline in cognitive functions. For example, the ability to learn languages decreases with age, while the neurobiological underpinnings for the decline in learning abilities are not known exactly. Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS, in combination with appropriate experimental paradigms, is a well-established technique to investigate the mechanisms of learning. Based on previous results in young adults, we tested the suitability of an associative learning paradigm for the acquisition of action- and object-related words in a cohort of older participants. We applied tDCS to the motor cortex (MC and hypothesized an involvement of the MC in learning action-related words. To test this, a cohort of 18 healthy, older participants (mean age 71 engaged in a computer-assisted associative word-learning paradigm, while tDCS stimulation (anodal, cathodal, sham was applied to the left MC. Participants’ task performance was quantified in a randomized, cross-over experimental design. Participants successfully learned novel words, correctly translating 39.22% of the words after 1 h of training under sham stimulation. Task performance correlated with scores for declarative verbal learning and logical reasoning. Overall, tDCS did not influence associative word learning, but a specific influence was observed of cathodal tDCS on learning of action-related words during the NMDA-dependent stimulation period. Successful learning of a novel lexicon with associative learning in older participants can only be achieved when the learning procedure is changed in several aspects, relative to young subjects. Learning success showed large inter-individual variance which was dependent on non-linguistic as well as linguistic cognitive functions. Intriguingly, cathodal tDCS influenced the acquisition of action-related words in the NMDA-dependent stimulation period. However, the effect was not specific for the associative

  3. Words as "Lexical Units" in Learning/Teaching Vocabulary

    Science.gov (United States)

    Almela, Moisés; Sanchez, Aquilino

    2007-01-01

    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…

  4. Digital Transformation of Words in Learning Processes: A Critical View.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saga, Hiroo

    1999-01-01

    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.…

  5. Distal prosody affects learning of novel words in an artificial language.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morrill, Tuuli H; McAuley, J Devin; Dilley, Laura C; Zdziarska, Patrycja A; Jones, Katherine B; Sanders, Lisa D

    2015-06-01

    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.

  6. Deep learning with word embeddings improves biomedical named entity recognition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Habibi, Maryam; Weber, Leon; Neves, Mariana; Wiegandt, David Luis; Leser, Ulf

    2017-07-15

    Text mining has become an important tool for biomedical research. The most fundamental text-mining task is the recognition of biomedical named entities (NER), such as genes, chemicals and diseases. Current NER methods rely on pre-defined features which try to capture the specific surface properties of entity types, properties of the typical local context, background knowledge, and linguistic information. State-of-the-art tools are entity-specific, as dictionaries and empirically optimal feature sets differ between entity types, which makes their development costly. Furthermore, features are often optimized for a specific gold standard corpus, which makes extrapolation of quality measures difficult. We show that a completely generic method based on deep learning and statistical word embeddings [called long short-term memory network-conditional random field (LSTM-CRF)] outperforms state-of-the-art entity-specific NER tools, and often by a large margin. To this end, we compared the performance of LSTM-CRF on 33 data sets covering five different entity classes with that of best-of-class NER tools and an entity-agnostic CRF implementation. On average, F1-score of LSTM-CRF is 5% above that of the baselines, mostly due to a sharp increase in recall. The source code for LSTM-CRF is available at https://github.com/glample/tagger and the links to the corpora are available at https://corposaurus.github.io/corpora/ . habibima@informatik.hu-berlin.de. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com

  7. Learning transitive verbs from single-word verbs in the input by young children acquiring English.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ninio, Anat

    2016-09-01

    The environmental context of verbs addressed by adults to young children is claimed to be uninformative regarding the verbs' meaning, yielding the Syntactic Bootstrapping Hypothesis that, for verb learning, full sentences are needed to demonstrate the semantic arguments of verbs. However, reanalysis of Gleitman's (1990) original data regarding input to a blind child revealed the context of single-word parental verbs to be more transparent than that of sentences. We tested the hypothesis that English-speaking children learn their early verbs from parents' single-word utterances. Distribution of single-word transitive verbs produced by a large sample of young children was strongly predicted by the relative token frequency of verbs in parental single-word utterances, but multiword sentences had no predictive value. Analysis of the interactive context showed that objects of verbs are retrievable by pragmatic inference, as is the meaning of the verbs. Single-word input appears optimal for learning an initial vocabulary of verbs.

  8. How Are Pronunciation Variants of Spoken Words Recognized? A Test of Generalization to Newly Learned Words

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pitt, Mark A.

    2009-01-01

    One account of how pronunciation variants of spoken words (center-> "senner" or "sennah") are recognized is that sublexical processes use information about variation in the same phonological environments to recover the intended segments [Gaskell, G., & Marslen-Wilson, W. D. (1998). Mechanisms of phonological inference in speech perception.…

  9. Wakefulness (Not Sleep) Promotes Generalization of Word Learning in 2.5-Year-Old Children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Werchan, Denise M.; Gómez, Rebecca L.

    2014-01-01

    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…

  10. Supporting Preschoolers' Vocabulary Learning: Using a Decision-Making Model to Select Appropriate Words and Methods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christ, Tanya; Wang, X. Christine

    2012-01-01

    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…

  11. Word, nonword and visual paired associate learning in Dutch dyslexic children

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Messbauer, V.C.S.; de Jong, P.F.

    2003-01-01

    Verbal and non-verbal learning were investigated in 21 8-11-year-old dyslexic children and chronological-age controls, and in 21 7-9-year-old reading-age controls. Tasks involved the paired associate learning of words, nonwords, or symbols with pictures. Both learning and retention of associations

  12. The relationship between novel word learning and anomia treatment success in adults with chronic aphasia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dignam, Jade; Copland, David; Rawlings, Alicia; O'Brien, Kate; Burfein, Penni; Rodriguez, Amy D

    2016-01-29

    Learning capacity may influence an individual's response to aphasia rehabilitation. However, investigations into the relationship between novel word learning ability and response to anomia therapy are lacking. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the novel word learning ability in post-stroke aphasia and to establish the relationship between learning ability and anomia treatment outcomes. We also explored the influence of locus of language breakdown on novel word learning ability and anomia treatment response. 30 adults (6F; 24M) with chronic, post-stroke aphasia were recruited to the study. Prior to treatment, participants underwent an assessment of language, which included the Comprehensive Aphasia Test and three baseline confrontation naming probes in order to develop sets of treated and untreated items. We also administered the novel word learning paradigm, in which participants learnt novel names associated with unfamiliar objects and were immediately tested on recall (expressive) and recognition (receptive) tasks. Participants completed 48 h of Aphasia Language Impairment and Functioning Therapy (Aphasia LIFT) over a 3 week (intensive) or 8 week (distributed) schedule. Therapy primarily targeted the remediation of word retrieval deficits, so naming of treated and untreated items immediately post-therapy and at 1 month follow-up was used to determine therapeutic response. Performance on recall and recognition tasks demonstrated that participants were able to learn novel words; however, performance was variable and was influenced by participants' aphasia severity, lexical-semantic processing and locus of language breakdown. Novel word learning performance was significantly correlated with participants' response to therapy for treated items at post-therapy. In contrast, participants' novel word learning performance was not correlated with therapy gains for treated items at 1 month follow-up or for untreated items at either time point. Therapy intensity

  13. Induced lexical categories enhance cross-situational learning of word meanings

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Alishahi, A.; Chrupala, Grzegorz

    2014-01-01

    In this paper we bring together two sources of information that have been proposed as clues used by children acquiring word meanings. One mechanism is cross-situational learning which exploits co-occurrences between words and their referents in perceptual context accompanying utterances. The other

  14. How does of initial inaccuracy benefit cross-situational word learning?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Grimmick, C.; Kachergis, G.E.; Gureckis, T.; Gunzelmann, G.; Howes, A.; Tenbrink, T.; Davelaar, E.

    2017-01-01

    Both children and adults are able to extract several intended word-referent mappings from a series of scenes containing multiple words and objects. Known as cross-situational learning, this ability is thought to be an important means of acquiring language. Proposed models of this ability range from

  15. Effect of Repeated Exposures on Word Learning in Quiet and Noise

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blaiser, Kristina M.; Nelson, Peggy B.; Kohnert, Kathryn

    2015-01-01

    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…

  16. Word Learning during Reading: Effects of Language Ability in School-Age Children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hill, Margaret S.; Wagovich, Stacy A.; Manfra, Louis

    2017-01-01

    Most vocabulary growth during the school-age years occurs incidentally. However, little is understood about the influence of language skills on word knowledge growth during reading. Using a pretest-posttest quasi-experimental design, we examined incidental word learning through reading, considering the presence/absence of supportive context and…

  17. Learning to use a word processor with concurrent computer-assisted instruction

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Simons, P.R.J.; Biemans, H.J.A.

    1992-01-01

    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

  18. Semantic and phonological schema influence spoken word learning and overnight consolidation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Havas, Viktória; Taylor, Jsh; Vaquero, Lucía; de Diego-Balaguer, Ruth; Rodríguez-Fornells, Antoni; Davis, Matthew H

    2018-01-01

    We studied the initial acquisition and overnight consolidation of new spoken words that resemble words in the native language (L1) or in an unfamiliar, non-native language (L2). Spanish-speaking participants learned the spoken forms of novel words in their native language (Spanish) or in a different language (Hungarian), which were paired with pictures of familiar or unfamiliar objects, or no picture. We thereby assessed, in a factorial way, the impact of existing knowledge (schema) on word learning by manipulating both semantic (familiar vs unfamiliar objects) and phonological (L1- vs L2-like novel words) familiarity. Participants were trained and tested with a 12-hr intervening period that included overnight sleep or daytime awake. Our results showed (1) benefits of sleep to recognition memory that were greater for words with L2-like phonology and (2) that learned associations with familiar but not unfamiliar pictures enhanced recognition memory for novel words. Implications for complementary systems accounts of word learning are discussed.

  19. Learning the spelling of strange words in Dutch benefits from regularized reading

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bosman, A.M.T.; Hell, J.G. van; Verhoeven, L.T.W.

    2006-01-01

    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

  20. Articulatory Control in Childhood Apraxia of Speech in a Novel Word-Learning Task

    Science.gov (United States)

    Case, Julie; Grigos, Maria I.

    2016-01-01

    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…

  1. Using Number Lines to Solve Math Word Problems: A Strategy for Students with Learning Disabilities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gonsalves, Nicola; Krawec, Jennifer

    2014-01-01

    Students with learning disabilities (LD) consistently struggle with word problem solving in mathematics classes. This difficulty has made curricular, state, and national tests particularly stressful, as word problem solving has become a predominant feature of such student performance assessments. Research suggests that students with LD perform…

  2. Evidence for preserved novel word learning in Down syndrome suggests multiple routes to vocabulary acquisition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mosse, Emma K; Jarrold, Christopher

    2011-08-01

    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 see whether these may account for an apparent impairment in word learning in Down syndrome demonstrated in earlier research. Paired associate word and nonword learning tasks were presented, requiring participants to learn the names of novel characters. The nonword stimuli varied in the degree of wordlikeness in 2 studies. A third study investigated extraneous task demand. Across 3 studies, there was no suggestion of a word learning deficit associated with Down syndrome (η(2)(p) for the main effect of group of .03, .11, and .03, respectively), despite the level of phonological representation required. There was evidence that novel word learning by participants with Down syndrome exceeded that which their verbal short-term memory capacity would predict. Vocabulary acquisition in Down syndrome may not rely on verbal short-term memory to the same extent as in typically developing children, lending support to the suggestion that new word learning may be underpinned by an additional memory process.

  3. A Bootstrapping Model of Frequency and Context Effects in Word Learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kachergis, George; Yu, Chen; Shiffrin, Richard M

    2017-04-01

    Prior research has shown that people can learn many nouns (i.e., word-object mappings) from a short series of ambiguous situations containing multiple words and objects. For successful cross-situational learning, people must approximately track which words and referents co-occur most frequently. This study investigates the effects of allowing some word-referent pairs to appear more frequently than others, as is true in real-world learning environments. Surprisingly, high-frequency pairs are not always learned better, but can also boost learning of other pairs. Using a recent associative model (Kachergis, Yu, & Shiffrin, 2012), we explain how mixing pairs of different frequencies can bootstrap late learning of the low-frequency pairs based on early learning of higher frequency pairs. We also manipulate contextual diversity, the number of pairs a given pair appears with across training, since it is naturalistically confounded with frequency. The associative model has competing familiarity and uncertainty biases, and their interaction is able to capture the individual and combined effects of frequency and contextual diversity on human learning. Two other recent word-learning models do not account for the behavioral findings. Copyright © 2016 Cognitive Science Society, Inc.

  4. The impact of iconic gestures on foreign language word learning and its neural substrate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Macedonia, Manuela; Müller, Karsten; Friederici, Angela D

    2011-06-01

    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. Copyright © 2010 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  5. Novel-word learning in children with normal hearing and hearing loss.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stelmachowicz, Patricia G; Pittman, Andrea L; Hoover, Brenda M; Lewis, Dawna E

    2004-02-01

    The goal of this study was to assess performance on a novel-word learning task by normal-hearing and hearing-impaired children for words varying in form (noun versus verb), stimulus level (50 versus 60 dB SPL), and number of repetitions (4 versus 6). It was hypothesized that novel-word learning would be significantly poorer in the subjects with hearing loss, would increase with both level and repetition, and would be better for nouns than verbs. Twenty normal-hearing and 11 hearing-impaired children (6 to 9 yr old) participated in this study. Each child viewed a 4-minute animated slide show containing 8 novel words. The effects of hearing status, word form, repetition, and stimulus level were examined systematically. The influence of audibility, word recognition, chronological age, and lexical development also were evaluated. After hearing the story twice, children were asked to identify each word from a set of four pictures. Overall performance was 60% for the normal-hearing children and 41% for the children with hearing loss. Significant predictors of performance were PPVT raw scores, hearing status, stimulus level, and repetitions. The variables age, audibility, word recognition scores, and word form were not significant predictors. Results suggest that a child's ability to learn new words can be predicted from vocabulary size, stimulus level, number of exposures, and hearing status. Further, the sensitivity to presentation level observed in this novel-word learning task suggests that this type of paradigm may be an effective tool for studying various forms of hearing aid signal processing algorithms.

  6. The Origins of Verb Learning: Preverbal and Postverbal Infants' Learning of Word-Action Relations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gogate, Lakshmi; Maganti, Madhavilatha

    2017-01-01

    Purpose: This experiment examined English- or Spanish-learning preverbal (8-9 months, n = 32) and postverbal (12-14 months, n = 40) infants' learning of word-action pairings prior to and after the transition to verb comprehension and its relation to naturally learned vocabulary. Method: Infants of both verbal levels were first habituated to 2…

  7. Finding patterns and learning words: Infant phonotactic knowledge is associated with vocabulary size.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graf Estes, Katharine; Gluck, Stephanie Chen-Wu; Grimm, Kevin J

    2016-06-01

    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. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. Beyond naïve cue combination: salience and social cues in early word learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yurovsky, Daniel; Frank, Michael C

    2017-03-01

    Children learn their earliest words through social interaction, but it is unknown how much they rely on social information. Some theories argue that word learning is fundamentally social from its outset, with even the youngest infants understanding intentions and using them to infer a social partner's target of reference. In contrast, other theories argue that early word learning is largely a perceptual process in which young children map words onto salient objects. One way of unifying these accounts is to model word learning as weighted cue combination, in which children attend to many potential cues to reference, but only gradually learn the correct weight to assign each cue. We tested four predictions of this kind of naïve cue combination account, using an eye-tracking paradigm that combines social word teaching and two-alternative forced-choice testing. None of the predictions were supported. We thus propose an alternative unifying account: children are sensitive to social information early, but their ability to gather and deploy this information is constrained by domain-general cognitive processes. Developmental changes in children's use of social cues emerge not from learning the predictive power of social cues, but from the gradual development of attention, memory, and speed of information processing. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  9. Jointly learning word embeddings using a corpus and a knowledge base

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bollegala, Danushka; Maehara, Takanori; Kawarabayashi, Ken-ichi

    2018-01-01

    Methods for representing the meaning of words in vector spaces purely using the information distributed in text corpora have proved to be very valuable in various text mining and natural language processing (NLP) tasks. However, these methods still disregard the valuable semantic relational structure between words in co-occurring contexts. These beneficial semantic relational structures are contained in manually-created knowledge bases (KBs) such as ontologies and semantic lexicons, where the meanings of words are represented by defining the various relationships that exist among those words. We combine the knowledge in both a corpus and a KB to learn better word embeddings. Specifically, we propose a joint word representation learning method that uses the knowledge in the KBs, and simultaneously predicts the co-occurrences of two words in a corpus context. In particular, we use the corpus to define our objective function subject to the relational constrains derived from the KB. We further utilise the corpus co-occurrence statistics to propose two novel approaches, Nearest Neighbour Expansion (NNE) and Hedged Nearest Neighbour Expansion (HNE), that dynamically expand the KB and therefore derive more constraints that guide the optimisation process. Our experimental results over a wide-range of benchmark tasks demonstrate that the proposed method statistically significantly improves the accuracy of the word embeddings learnt. It outperforms a corpus-only baseline and reports an improvement of a number of previously proposed methods that incorporate corpora and KBs in both semantic similarity prediction and word analogy detection tasks. PMID:29529052

  10. Learning minimally different words in a third language: L2 proficiency as a crucial predictor of accuracy in an L3 word learning task

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Simon, E.; Escudero, P.; Broersma, M.; Dziubalska-Kołaczyk, K.; Wrembel, M.; Kul, M.

    2010-01-01

    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

  11. E-Learning System for English Education to emphasize Pronunciation, Word-for-Word Translation and Free Translation

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  12. Recognition of function words in 8-month-old French-learning infants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shi, Rushen; Gauthier, Bruno

    2005-04-01

    Previous work has shown that German-learning 7-9-month-old infants recognize function words (Hoehle and Weissenborn, 2003). English-learning infants recognize function words around 10.5-11 months (Schafer et al. 1998; Shady, 1996; Shi et al., 2003, 2004), and the highly frequent determiner ``the'' at 8 months (Shi et al., 2004). The present study investigates French-learning infants' recognition of function words. As French is a syllable-timing language, the fuller syllabic status may allow infants to recognize function words earlier than English-learning infants. Syntactically and morphologically, functional elements occur more systematically in French than in English, providing reliable statistical cues to functor segmentation. Using a preferential looking procedure, we familiarized 8-month-olds with a target function word (``des,'' ``la,'' ``mes'' or ``ta''), and tested them with phrases containing the target versus a non-target. Results showed that infants' looking time to the phrases containing the targets versus those containing the non-targets differed significantly. Thus, infants recognized the target functors in continuous speech. As the targets included both high-frequency (``des,'' ``la'') and low-frequency (``mes,'' ``ta'') function words, we suggest that infants may begin segmenting high-frequency functors at an even younger age. The implications of early processing of function words to language acquisition will be discussed.

  13. Neural representations for newly learned words are modulated by overnight consolidation, reading skill, and age.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Landi, Nicole; Malins, Jeffrey G; Frost, Stephen J; Magnuson, James S; Molfese, Peter; Ryherd, Kayleigh; Rueckl, Jay G; Mencl, William E; Pugh, Kenneth R

    2018-03-01

    Word learning depends not only on efficient online binding of phonological, orthographic and lexical information, but also on consolidation of new word representations into permanent lexical memory. Work on word learning under a variety of contexts indicates that reading and language skill impact facility of word learning in both print and speech. In addition, recent research finds that individuals with language impairments show deficits in both initial word form learning and in maintaining newly learned representations over time, implicating mechanisms associated with maintenance that may be driven by deficits in overnight consolidation. Although several recent studies have explored the neural bases of overnight consolidation of newly learned words, no extant work has examined individual differences in overnight consolidation at the neural level. The current study addresses this gap in the literature by investigating how individual differences in reading and language skills modulate patterns of neural activation associated with newly learned words following a period of overnight consolidation. Specifically, a community sample of adolescents and young adults with significant variability in reading and oral language (vocabulary) ability were trained on two spoken artificial lexicons, one in the evening on the day before fMRI scanning and one in the morning just prior to scanning. Comparisons of activation between words that were trained and consolidated vs. those that were trained but not consolidated revealed increased cortical activation in a number of language associated and memory associated regions. In addition, individual differences in age, reading skill and vocabulary modulated learning rate in our artificial lexicon learning task and the size of the cortical consolidation effect in the precuneus/posterior cingulate, such that older readers and more skilled readers had larger cortical consolidation effects in this learning-critical region. These findings

  14. What Can We Learn from the Word Writing CAFE?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bromley, Karen; Vandenberg, Amy; White, Jennifer

    2007-01-01

    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…

  15. Flexible Use of Mutual Exclusivity in Word Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kalashnikova, Marina; Mattock, Karen; Monaghan, Padraic

    2016-01-01

    From an early age, children apply the mutual exclusivity (ME) assumption, demonstrating preference for one-to-one mappings between words and their referents. However, for the acquisition of referentially overlapping terms, ME use must be suspended. We test whether contextual cues to intended meaning, in the form of presence of a speaker, may be…

  16. Sentence-based attention mechanisms in word learning: Evidence from a computational model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Afra eAlishahi

    2012-07-01

    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.

  17. Play along: effects of music and social interaction on word learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verga, Laura; Bigand, Emmanuel; Kotz, Sonja A

    2015-01-01

    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.

  18. Play along: Effects of music and social interaction on word learning.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura eVerga

    2015-09-01

    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.

  19. Play along: effects of music and social interaction on word learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verga, Laura; Bigand, Emmanuel; Kotz, Sonja A.

    2015-01-01

    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. PMID:26388818

  20. Predictive Coding Accelerates Word Recognition and Learning in the Early Stages of Language Development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ylinen, Sari; Bosseler, Alexis; Junttila, Katja; Huotilainen, Minna

    2017-01-01

    The ability to predict future events in the environment and learn from them is a fundamental component of adaptive behavior across species. Here we propose that inferring predictions facilitates speech processing and word learning in the early stages of language development. Twelve- and 24-month olds' electrophysiological brain responses to heard…

  1. Foreign language vocabulary learning: word-type effects during the labeling stage

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Groot, A.M.B.; van den Brink, R.C.L.; Kail, M.; Hickmann, M.

    2010-01-01

    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,

  2. Extracting Phonological Patterns for L2 Word Learning: The Effect of Poor Phonological Awareness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Chieh-Fang

    2014-01-01

    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…

  3. Encoding Deficits Impede Word Learning and Memory in Adults with Developmental Language Disorders

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGregor, Karla K.; Gordon, Katherine; Eden, Nichole; Arbisi-Kelm, Tim; Oleson, Jacob

    2017-01-01

    Purpose: The aim of this study was to determine whether the word-learning challenges associated with developmental language disorder (DLD) result from encoding or retention deficits. Method In Study 1, 59 postsecondary students with DLD and 60 with normal development (ND) took the California Verbal Learning Test-Second Edition, Adult Version…

  4. Teaching Community College Students Strategies for Learning Unknown Words as They Read Expository Text

    Science.gov (United States)

    Craigo, Leslie; Ehri, Linnea C.; Hart, Manijeh

    2017-01-01

    An experiment was conducted to investigate methods that enable college students to learn the meaning of unknown words as they read discipline-specific academic text. Forty-one college students read specific passages aloud during three sessions. Participants were randomly assigned to three vocabulary learning interventions or a control condition.…

  5. Building Corpus-Informed Word Lists for L2 Vocabulary Learning in Nine Languages

    Science.gov (United States)

    Charalabopoulou, Frieda; Gavrilidou, Maria; Kokkinakis, Sofie Johansson; Volodina, Elena

    2012-01-01

    Lexical competence constitutes a crucial aspect in L2 learning, since building a rich repository of words is considered indispensable for successful communication. CALL practitioners have experimented with various kinds of computer-mediated glosses to facilitate L2 vocabulary building in the context of incidental vocabulary learning. Intentional…

  6. What factors predict individual subjects' re-learning of words during anomia treatment?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    William Hayward

    2014-04-01

    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

  7. Rapid L2 Word Learning through High Constraint Sentence Context: An Event-Related Potential Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Baoguo Chen

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Previous studies have found quantity of exposure, i.e., frequency of exposure (Horst et al., 1998; Webb, 2008; Pellicer-Sánchez and Schmitt, 2010, is important for second language (L2 contextual word learning. Besides this factor, context constraint and L2 proficiency level have also been found to affect contextual word learning (Pulido, 2003; Tekmen and Daloglu, 2006; Elgort et al., 2015; Ma et al., 2015. In the present study, we adopted the event-related potential (ERP technique and chose high constraint sentences as reading materials to further explore the effects of quantity of exposure and proficiency on L2 contextual word learning. Participants were Chinese learners of English with different English proficiency levels. For each novel word, there were four high constraint sentences with the critical word at the end of the sentence. Learners read sentences and made semantic relatedness judgment afterwards, with ERPs recorded. Results showed that in the high constraint condition where each pseudoword was embedded in four sentences with consistent meaning, N400 amplitude upon this pseudoword decreased significantly as learners read the first two sentences. High proficiency learners responded faster in the semantic relatedness judgment task. These results suggest that in high quality sentence contexts, L2 learners could rapidly acquire word meaning without multiple exposures, and L2 proficiency facilitated this learning process.

  8. The impact of music on learning and consolidation of novel words.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tamminen, Jakke; Rastle, Kathleen; Darby, Jess; Lucas, Rebecca; Williamson, Victoria J

    2017-01-01

    Music can be a powerful mnemonic device, as shown by a body of literature demonstrating that listening to text sung to a familiar melody results in better memory for the words compared to conditions where they are spoken. Furthermore, patients with a range of memory impairments appear to be able to form new declarative memories when they are encoded in the form of lyrics in a song, while unable to remember similar materials after hearing them in the spoken modality. Whether music facilitates the acquisition of completely new information, such as new vocabulary, remains unknown. Here we report three experiments in which adult participants learned novel words in the spoken or sung modality. While we found no benefit of musical presentation on free recall or recognition memory of novel words, novel words learned in the sung modality were more strongly integrated in the mental lexicon compared to words learned in the spoken modality. This advantage for the sung words was only present when the training melody was familiar. The impact of musical presentation on learning therefore appears to extend beyond episodic memory and can be reflected in the emergence and properties of new lexical representations.

  9. The influence of linguistic and musical experience on Cantonese word learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cooper, Angela; Wang, Yue

    2012-06-01

    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.

  10. The Effective Use of Symbols in Teaching Word Recognition to Children with Severe Learning Difficulties: A Comparison of Word Alone, Integrated Picture Cueing and the Handle Technique.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sheehy, Kieron

    2002-01-01

    A comparison is made between a new technique (the Handle Technique), Integrated Picture Cueing, and a Word Alone Method. Results show using a new combination of teaching strategies enabled logographic symbols to be used effectively in teaching word recognition to 12 children with severe learning difficulties. (Contains references.) (Author/CR)

  11. Modeling Learning in Doubly Multilevel Binary Longitudinal Data Using Generalized Linear Mixed Models: An Application to Measuring and Explaining Word Learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cho, Sun-Joo; Goodwin, Amanda P

    2016-04-01

    When word learning is supported by instruction in experimental studies for adolescents, word knowledge outcomes tend to be collected from complex data structure, such as multiple aspects of word knowledge, multilevel reader data, multilevel item data, longitudinal design, and multiple groups. This study illustrates how generalized linear mixed models can be used to measure and explain word learning for data having such complexity. Results from this application provide deeper understanding of word knowledge than could be attained from simpler models and show that word knowledge is multidimensional and depends on word characteristics and instructional contexts.

  12. The role of discourse context in developing word form representations: a paradoxical relation between reading and learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Landi, Nicole; Perfetti, Charles A; Bolger, Donald J; Dunlap, Susan; Foorman, Barbara R

    2006-06-01

    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.

  13. Lexical Stress and Phonetic Processing in Word Learning in 20- to 24-Month-Old English-Learning Children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Floccia, Caroline; Nazzi, Thierry; Austin, Keith; Arreckx, Frederique; Goslin, Jeremy

    2011-01-01

    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…

  14. Learning from input and memory evolution: points of vulnerability on a pathway to mastery in word learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Storkel, Holly L

    2015-02-01

    Word learning consists of at least two neurocognitive processes: learning from input during training and memory evolution during gaps between training sessions. Fine-grained analysis of word learning by normal adults provides evidence that learning from input is swift and stable, whereas memory evolution is a point of potential vulnerability on the pathway to mastery. Moreover, success during learning from input is linked to positive outcomes from memory evolution. These two neurocognitive processes can be overlaid on to components of clinical treatment with within-session variables (i.e. dose form and dose) potentially linked to learning from input and between-session variables (i.e. dose frequency) linked to memory evolution. Collecting data at the beginning and end of a treatment session can be used to identify the point of vulnerability in word learning for a given client and the appropriate treatment component can then be adjusted to improve the client's word learning. Two clinical cases are provided to illustrate this approach.

  15. Neural Pattern Similarity in the Left IFG and Fusiform Is Associated with Novel Word Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qu, Jing; Qian, Liu; Chen, Chuansheng; Xue, Gui; Li, Huiling; Xie, Peng; Mei, Leilei

    2017-01-01

    Previous studies have revealed that greater neural pattern similarity across repetitions is associated with better subsequent memory. In this study, we used an artificial language training paradigm and representational similarity analysis to examine whether neural pattern similarity across repetitions before training was associated with post-training behavioral performance. Twenty-four native Chinese speakers were trained to learn a logographic artificial language for 12 days and behavioral performance was recorded using the word naming and picture naming tasks. Participants were scanned while performing a passive viewing task before training, after 4-day training and after 12-day training. Results showed that pattern similarity in the left pars opercularis (PO) and fusiform gyrus (FG) before training was negatively associated with reaction time (RT) in both word naming and picture naming tasks after training. These results suggest that neural pattern similarity is an effective neurofunctional predictor of novel word learning in addition to word memory. PMID:28878640

  16. Neural Pattern Similarity in the Left IFG and Fusiform Is Associated with Novel Word Learning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jing Qu

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Previous studies have revealed that greater neural pattern similarity across repetitions is associated with better subsequent memory. In this study, we used an artificial language training paradigm and representational similarity analysis to examine whether neural pattern similarity across repetitions before training was associated with post-training behavioral performance. Twenty-four native Chinese speakers were trained to learn a logographic artificial language for 12 days and behavioral performance was recorded using the word naming and picture naming tasks. Participants were scanned while performing a passive viewing task before training, after 4-day training and after 12-day training. Results showed that pattern similarity in the left pars opercularis (PO and fusiform gyrus (FG before training was negatively associated with reaction time (RT in both word naming and picture naming tasks after training. These results suggest that neural pattern similarity is an effective neurofunctional predictor of novel word learning in addition to word memory.

  17. Bilingual Infants Demonstrate Advantages in Learning Words in a Third Language.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, Leher

    2017-05-29

    Prior research suggests that bilingualism may endow infants with greater phonological flexibility. This study investigated whether this flexibility facilitates word learning in additional languages (n = 96). Experiment 1 compared 18- to 20-month-old monolingual (English) and bilingual (English/Mandarin) infants on their ability to learn words distinguished by click consonants from a Southern African language, Ndebele. English-Mandarin bilingual infants were sensitive to Ndebele click contrasts, but monolingual English infants were not. In Experiments 2a and 2b, we investigated whether enhanced bilingual sensitivity extended to analogous nonlinguistic labels: hand claps and finger snaps. Although discriminated by infants, neither group distinguished words labeled by hand claps and finger snaps. Results suggest that bilingual infants' sustained openness to non native contrast may facilitate the uptake of words in distant languages. © 2017 The Author. Child Development © 2017 Society for Research in Child Development, Inc.

  18. Learning to Spell Words: Findings, Theories, and Issues

    Science.gov (United States)

    Treiman, Rebecca

    2017-01-01

    There has been less research on how children learn to spell than on how they learn to read, but a good deal is now known about spelling development. This article reviews studies of normative development, beginning with children's early scribbles and proceeding to prephonological spelling involving letters, phonologically influenced invented…

  19. Interactive language learning by robots: the transition from babbling to word forms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lyon, Caroline; Nehaniv, Chrystopher L; Saunders, Joe

    2012-01-01

    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 early language

  20. Semantic richness and word learning in children with autism spectrum disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gladfelter, Allison; Goffman, Lisa

    2018-03-01

    Semantically rich learning contexts facilitate semantic, phonological, and articulatory aspects of word learning in children with typical development (TD). However, because children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) show differences at each of these processing levels, it is unclear whether they will benefit from semantic cues in the same manner as their typical peers. The goal of this study was to track how the inclusion of rich, sparse, or no semantic cues influences semantic, phonological, and articulatory aspects of word learning in children with ASD and TD over time. Twenty-four school-aged children (12 in each group), matched on expressive vocabulary, participated in an extended word learning paradigm. Performance on five measures of learning (referent identification, confrontation naming, defining, phonetic accuracy, and speech motor stability) were tracked across three sessions approximately one week apart to assess the influence of semantic richness on extended learning. Results indicate that children with ASD benefit from semantically rich learning contexts similarly to their peers with TD; however, one key difference between the two groups emerged - the children with ASD showed heightened shifts in speech motor stability. These findings offer insights into common learning mechanisms in children with ASD and TD, as well as pointing to a potentially distinct speech motor learning trajectory in children with ASD, providing a window into the emergence of stereotypic vocalizations in these children. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  1. Word-reading and word-spelling styles of french beginners : Do all children learn to read and to spell in the same way?

    OpenAIRE

    Eme, Elsa; Golder, Caroline

    2005-01-01

    This article explores the styles of word reading and word spelling used by beginning readers in the French language. The aim of the study was to find out whether “sub-lexical” and “lexical” styles of reliance, which has been observed in children learning to read and spell in English, exists in French, a language with a more transparent orthography. A sample of 159 subjects were assessed on their reading and spelling of regular words, irregular words and nonwords. Cluster analyses on reading/s...

  2. Children show right-lateralized effects of spoken word-form learning.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anni Nora

    Full Text Available 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.

  3. Associative vocabulary learning: development and testing of two paradigms for the (re-) acquisition of action- and object-related words.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Freundlieb, Nils; Ridder, Volker; Dobel, Christian; Enriquez-Geppert, Stefanie; Baumgaertner, Annette; Zwitserlood, Pienie; Gerloff, Christian; Hummel, Friedhelm C; Liuzzi, Gianpiero

    2012-01-01

    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

  4. Just a talking book? Word learning from watching baby videos.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robb, Michael B; Richert, Rebekah A; Wartella, Ellen A

    2009-03-01

    This study examined the relationship between viewing an infant DVD and expressive and receptive language outcomes. Children between 12 and 15 months were randomly assigned to view Baby Wordsworth, a DVD highlighting words around the house marketed for children beginning at 12 months of age. Viewings took place in home settings over 6 weeks. After every 2 weeks and five exposures to the DVD, children were assessed on expressive and receptive communication measures. Results indicated there was no increased growth on either outcome for children who had viewed the DVD as compared to children in the control group, even after multiple exposures. After controlling for age, gender, cognitive developmental level, income, and parent education, the most significant predictor of vocabulary comprehension and production scores was the amount of time children were read to.

  5. Hear here: children with hearing loss learn words by listening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lew, Joyce; Purcell, Alison A; Doble, Maree; Lim, Lynne H

    2014-10-01

    Early use of hearing devices and family participation in auditory-verbal therapy has been associated with age-appropriate verbal communication outcomes for children with hearing loss. However, there continues to be great variability in outcomes across different oral intervention programmes and little consensus on how therapists should prioritise goals at each therapy session for positive clinical outcomes. This pilot intervention study aimed to determine whether therapy goals that concentrate on teaching preschool children with hearing loss how to distinguish between words in a structured listening programme is effective, and whether gains in speech perception skills impact on vocabulary and speech development without them having to be worked on directly in therapy. A multiple baseline across subjects design was used in this within-subject controlled study. 3 children aged between 2:6 and 3:1 with moderate-severe to severe-profound hearing loss were recruited for a 6-week intervention programme. Each participant commenced at different stages of the 10-staged listening programme depending on their individual listening skills at recruitment. Speech development and vocabulary assessments were conducted before and after the training programme in addition to speech perception assessments and probes conducted throughout the intervention programme. All participants made gains in speech perception skills as well as vocabulary and speech development. Speech perception skills acquired were noted to be maintained a week after intervention. In addition, all participants were able to generalise speech perception skills learnt to words that had not been used in the intervention programme. This pilot study found that therapy directed at listening alone is promising and that it may have positive impact on speech and vocabulary development without these goals having to be incorporated into a therapy programme. Although a larger study is necessary for more conclusive findings, the

  6. Vowel bias in Danish word-learning: processing biases are language-specific.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Højen, Anders; Nazzi, Thierry

    2016-01-01

    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 the language in acquisition. To do so, we used the interactive word-learning task set up by Havy and Nazzi (2009), teaching Danish-learning 20-month-olds pairs of phonetically similar words that contrasted either on one of their consonants or one of their vowels, by either one or two phonological features. Danish was chosen because it has more vowels than consonants, and is characterized by extensive consonant lenition. Both phenomena could disfavor a consonant bias. Evidence of word-learning was found only for vocalic information, irrespective of whether one or two phonological features were changed. The implication of these findings is that the phonological biases found in early lexical processing are not language-general but develop during language acquisition, depending on the phonological or lexical properties of the native language. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  7. Using electronic storybooks to support word learning in children with severe language impairments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smeets, Daisy J H; van Dijken, Marianne J; Bus, Adriana G

    2014-01-01

    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. © Hammill Institute on Disabilities 2012.

  8. Chunking or not chunking? How do we find words in artificial language learning?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Franco, Ana; Destrebecqz, Arnaud

    2012-01-01

    What is the nature of the representations acquired in implicit statistical learning? Recent results in the field of language learning have shown that adults and infants are able to find the words of an artificial language when exposed to a continuous auditory sequence consisting in a random ordering of these words. Such performance can only be based on processing the transitional probabilities between sequence elements. Two different kinds of mechanisms may account for these data: Participants may either parse the sequence into smaller chunks corresponding to the words of the artificial language, or they may become progressively sensitive to the actual values of the transitional probabilities between syllables. The two accounts are difficult to differentiate because they make similar predictions in comparable experimental settings. In this study, we present two experiments that aimed at contrasting these two theories. In these experiments, participants had to learn 2 sets of pseudo-linguistic regularities: Language 1 (L1) and Language 2 (L2) presented in the context of a serial reaction time task. L1 and L2 were either unrelated (none of the syllabic transitions of L1 were present in L2), or partly related (some of the intra-words transitions of L1 were used as inter-words transitions of L2). The two accounts make opposite predictions in these two settings. Our results indicate that the nature of the representations depends on the learning condition. When cues were presented to facilitate parsing of the sequence, participants learned the words of the artificial language. However, when no cues were provided, performance was strongly influenced by the employed transitional probabilities.

  9. Joint Learning of Representations of Medical Concepts and Words from EHR Data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bai, Tian; Chanda, Ashis Kumar; Egleston, Brian L; Vucetic, Slobodan

    2017-11-01

    There has been an increasing interest in learning low-dimensional vector representations of medical concepts from electronic health records (EHRs). While EHRs contain structured data such as diagnostic codes and laboratory tests, they also contain unstructured clinical notes, which provide more nuanced details on a patient's health status. In this work, we propose a method that jointly learns medical concept and word representations. In particular, we focus on capturing the relationship between medical codes and words by using a novel learning scheme for word2vec model. Our method exploits relationships between different parts of EHRs in the same visit and embeds both codes and words in the same continuous vector space. In the end, we are able to derive clusters which reflect distinct disease and treatment patterns. In our experiments, we qualitatively show how our methods of grouping words for given diagnostic codes compares with a topic modeling approach. We also test how well our representations can be used to predict disease patterns of the next visit. The results show that our approach outperforms several common methods.

  10. Activation of extrastriate and frontal cortical areas by visual words and word-like stimuli

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Petersen, S.E.; Fox, P.T.; Snyder, A.Z.; Raichle, M.E.

    1990-01-01

    Visual presentation of words activates extrastriate regions of the occipital lobes of the brain. When analyzed by positron emission tomography (PET), certain areas in the left, medial extrastriate visual cortex were activated by visually presented pseudowords that obey English spelling rules, as well as by actual words. These areas were not activated by nonsense strings of letters or letter-like forms. Thus visual word form computations are based on learned distinctions between words and nonwords. In addition, during passive presentation of words, but not pseudowords, activation occurred in a left frontal area that is related to semantic processing. These findings support distinctions made in cognitive psychology and computational modeling between high-level visual and semantic computations on single words and describe the anatomy that may underlie these distinctions

  11. Learning to spell from reading: general knowledge about spelling patterns influences memory for specific words.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pacton, Sébastien; Borchardt, Gaëlle; Treiman, Rebecca; Lété, Bernard; Fayol, Michel

    2014-05-01

    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.

  12. Remember dax? Relations between children's cross-situational word learning, memory, and language abilities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vlach, Haley A; DeBrock, Catherine A

    2017-04-01

    Learning new words is a difficult task. Children are able to resolve the ambiguity of the task and map words to referents by tracking co-occurrence probabilities across multiple moments in time, a behavior termed cross-situational word learning (CSWL). Although we observe developments in CSWL abilities across childhood, the cognitive processes that drive individual and developmental change have yet to be identified. This research tested a developmental systems account by examining whether multiple cognitive systems co-contribute to children's CSWL. The results of two experiments revealed that multiple cognitive domains, such as memory and language abilities, are likely to drive the development of CSWL above and beyond children's age. The results also revealed that memory abilities are likely to be particularly important above and beyond other cognitive abilities. These findings have implications for theories and computational models of CSWL, which typically do not account for individual children's cognitive capacities or changes in cognitive capacities across time.

  13. Measuring incremental changes in word knowledge: experimental validation and implications for learning and assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frishkoff, Gwen A; Collins-Thompson, Kevyn; Perfetti, Charles A; Callan, Jamie

    2008-11-01

    The goal of this study was to test a new technique for assessing vocabulary development. This technique is based on an algorithm for scoring the accuracy of word definitions using a continuous scale (Collins-Thompson & Callan, 2007). In an experiment with adult learners, target words were presented in six different sentence contexts, and the number of informative versus misleading contexts was systematically manipulated. Participants generated a target definition after each sentence, and the definition-scoring algorithm was used to assess the degree of accuracy on each trial. We observed incremental improvements in definition accuracy across trials. Moreover, learning curves were sensitive to the proportion of misleading contexts, the use of spaced versus massed practice, and individual differences, demonstrating the utility of this procedure for capturing specific experimental effects on the trajectory of word learning. We discuss the implications of these results for measurement of meaning, vocabulary assessment, and instructional design.

  14. The influence of bilingualism on statistical word learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poepsel, Timothy J; Weiss, Daniel J

    2016-07-01

    Statistical learning is a fundamental component of language acquisition, yet to date, relatively few studies have examined whether these abilities differ in bilinguals. In the present study, we examine this issue by comparing English monolinguals with Chinese-English and English-Spanish bilinguals in a cross-situational statistical learning (CSSL) task. In Experiment 1, we assessed the ability of both monolinguals and bilinguals on a basic CSSL task that contained only one-to-one mappings. In Experiment 2, learners were asked to form both one-to-one and two-to-one mappings, and were tested at three points during familiarization. Overall, monolinguals and bilinguals did not differ in their learning of one-to-one mappings. However, bilinguals more quickly acquired two-to-one mappings, while also exhibiting greater proficiency than monolinguals. We conclude that the fundamental SL mechanism may not be affected by language experience, in accord with previous studies. However, when the input contains greater variability, bilinguals may be more prone to detecting the presence of multiple structures. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  15. Teaching community college students strategies for learning unknown words as they read expository text

    OpenAIRE

    Craigo, Leslie; Ehri, Linnea C.; Hart, Manijeh

    2017-01-01

    An experiment was conducted to investigate methods that enable college students to learn the meaning of unknown words as they read discipline-specific academic text. Forty-one college students read specific passages aloud during three sessions. Participants were randomly assigned to three vocabulary learning interventions or a control condition. The interventions involved applying context, morphemic, and syntactic strategies; applying definitions; or applying both strategies and definitions t...

  16. Near or far: The effect of spatial distance and vocabulary knowledge on word learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Axelsson, Emma L; Perry, Lynn K; Scott, Emilly J; Horst, Jessica S

    2016-01-01

    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. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  17. Tracking the Eye Movement of Four Years Old Children Learning Chinese Words

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Dan; Chen, Guangyao; Liu, Yingyi; Liu, Jiaxin; Pan, Jue; Mo, Lei

    2018-01-01

    Storybook reading is the major source of literacy exposure for beginning readers. The present study tracked 4-year-old Chinese children's eye movements while they were reading simulated storybook pages. Their eye-movement patterns were examined in relation to their word learning gains. The same reading list, consisting of 20 two-character Chinese…

  18. Perception Practice, Production Practice, and Musical Ability in L2 Mandarin Tone-Word Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Man; DeKeyser, Robert

    2017-01-01

    This study examined the differential effects of systematic perception and production practice and the role of musical ability in learning Mandarin tone-words by native English-speaking adults in a training study. In this study, all participants (N = 38; 19 for each practice group) were first taught declarative knowledge of Mandarin tones and of…

  19. Effects of Corrective Feedback on Word Accuracy and Reading Comprehension of Readers with Learning Disabilities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pany, Darlene; McCoy, Kathleen M.

    1988-01-01

    In a repeated measures design, third grade students with learning disabilities (N=16) read under three treatment conditions: corrective feedback on every oral reading error, correction on meaning change errors only, and no feedback regardless of error. Corrective feedback on oral reading errors improved both word recognition accuracy and reading…

  20. Toddlers' Word Learning from Contingent and Noncontingent Video on Touch Screens

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirkorian, Heather L.; Choi, Koeun; Pempek, Tiffany A.

    2016-01-01

    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…

  1. Learning across Languages: Bilingual Experience Supports Dual Language Statistical Word Segmentation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Antovich, Dylan M.; Graf Estes, Katharine

    2018-01-01

    Bilingual acquisition presents learning challenges beyond those found in monolingual environments, including the need to segment speech in two languages. Infants may use statistical cues, such as syllable-level transitional probabilities, to segment words from fluent speech. In the present study we assessed monolingual and bilingual 14-month-olds'…

  2. Syntactic Awareness and Arithmetic Word Problem Solving in Children with and without Learning Disabilities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peake, Christian; Jiménez, Juan E.; Rodríguez, Cristina; Bisschop, Elaine; Villarroel, Rebeca

    2015-01-01

    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…

  3. Using electronic storybooks to support word learning in children with severe language impairments

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Smeets, Daisy J. H.; van Dijken, Marianne J.; Bus, Adriana G

    2012-01-01

    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

  4. Auditory Processing, Linguistic Prosody Awareness, and Word Reading in Mandarin-Speaking Children Learning English

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chung, Wei-Lun; Jarmulowicz, Linda; Bidelman, Gavin M.

    2017-01-01

    This study examined language-specific links among auditory processing, linguistic prosody awareness, and Mandarin (L1) and English (L2) word reading in 61 Mandarin-speaking, English-learning children. Three auditory discrimination abilities were measured: pitch contour, pitch interval, and rise time (rate of intensity change at tone onset).…

  5. Error Analysis of Mathematical Word Problem Solving across Students with and without Learning Disabilities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kingsdorf, Sheri; Krawec, Jennifer

    2014-01-01

    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…

  6. Morphological Awareness and Bilingual Word Learning: A Longitudinal Structural Equation Modeling Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Dongbo; Koda, Keiko; Leong, Che Kan

    2016-01-01

    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…

  7. Learning-Dependent Changes of Associations between Unfamiliar Words and Perceptual Features: A 15-Day Longitudinal Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kambara, Toshimune; Tsukiura, Takashi; Shigemune, Yayoi; Kanno, Akitake; Nouchi, Rui; Yomogida, Yukihito; Kawashima, Ryuta

    2013-01-01

    This study examined behavioral changes in 15-day learning of word-picture (WP) and word-sound (WS) associations, using meaningless stimuli. Subjects performed a learning task and two recognition tasks under the WP and WS conditions every day for 15 days. Two main findings emerged from this study. First, behavioral data of recognition accuracy and…

  8. A picture tells 1000 words: learning teamwork in primary care.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelly, Martina; Bennett, Deirdre; O'Flynn, Siun; Foley, Tony

    2013-04-01

    Teamwork and patient centredness are frequently articulated concepts in medical education, but are not always explicit in the curriculum. In Ireland, recent government policy emphasises the importance of a primary care team approach to health care. We report on an appraisal of a newly introduced community-based student attachment, which focused on teamwork. To review students' experience of teamwork following a community clinical placement by examining student assignments: essays, poetry, music and art. Year-2 graduate-entry students (n = 45) spent 2 weeks with a primary care team. Attachments comprised placements with members of the primary care team, emphasising team dynamics, at the end of which students submitted a representative piece of work, which captured their learning. Essays (n = 22) were analysed using a thematic content analysis. Artwork consisted of painting, collage, photography, poetry and original music (n = 23). These were analysed using Gardner's entry points. Three core themes emerged in both written and visual work: patient centredness; communication; and an improved appreciation of the skills of other health care professionals. Students identified optimal team communication occurring when patient outcomes were prioritised. Metaphors relating to puzzles, hands and inter-connectedness feature strongly. The poems and artwork had a high impact when they were presented to tutors. Primary care team placements focus student attention on teamwork and patient centredness. Student artwork shows potential as a tool to evaluate student learning in medical education. © Blackwell Publishing Ltd 2013.

  9. Neurobiological correlates of inhibition of the right Broca homologue during new-word learning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pierre Nicolo

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS has demonstrated beneficial effects on motor learning. It would be important to obtain a similar enhancement for verbal learning. However, previous studies have mostly assessed short-term effects of rTMS on language performance and the effect on learning is largely unknown. This study examined whether an inhibition of the right Broca homologue has long-term impact on neural processes underlying the acquisition of new words in healthy individuals. Sixteen young participants trained a new-word learning paradigm with rare, mostly unknown objects and their corresponding words immediately after continuous theta burst stimulation (cTBS or sham stimulation of right inferior frontal gyrus (IFG in a cross-over design. Neural effects were assessed with electroencephalography (EEG source power analyses during the naming task as well as coherence analyses at rest one day before and after training.Inhibition of the right Broca homologue did not affect new word learning performance at the group level. Behavioral and neural responses to cTBS were variable across participants and were associated with the magnitude of resting-state alpha-band coherence between the stimulated area and the rest of the brain before stimulation. Only participants with high intrinsic alpha-band coherence between the stimulated area and the rest of the brain before stimulation showed the expected inhibition during naming and greater learning performance. In conclusion, our study confirms that cTBS can induce lasting modulations of neural processes which are associated with learning, but the effect depends on the individual network state.

  10. Toddlers' word learning and transfer from electronic and print books.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strouse, Gabrielle A; Ganea, Patricia A

    2017-04-01

    Transfer from symbolic media to the real world can be difficult for young children. A sample of 73 toddlers aged 17 to 23months were read either an electronic book displayed on a touchscreen device or a traditional print book in which a novel object was paired with a novel label. Toddlers in both conditions learned the label within the context of the book. However, only those who read the traditional format book generalized and transferred the label to other contexts. An older group of 28 toddlers aged 24 to 30months did generalize and transfer from the electronic book. Across ages, those children who primarily used screens to watch prerecorded video at home transferred less from the electronic book than those with more diverse home media experiences. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. The influence of part-word phonotactic probability/neighborhood density on word learning by preschool children varying in expressive vocabulary.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Storkel, Holly L; Hoover, Jill R

    2011-06-01

    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.

  12. The role of reward in word learning and its implications for language acquisition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ripollés, Pablo; Marco-Pallarés, Josep; Hielscher, Ulrike; Mestres-Missé, Anna; Tempelmann, Claus; Heinze, Hans-Jochen; Rodríguez-Fornells, Antoni; Noesselt, Toemme

    2014-11-03

    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. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. The Impact of Playing Word Games on Young Iranian EFL Learners’ Vocabulary Learning and Retention

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raheleh Kabiri

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available Acquiring adequate vocabulary in a foreign language is very important but often difficult. Considering the importance of learner’s vocabulary learning and retention, the present study aimed at examining the impact of playing word games on young Iranian EFL learners’ vocabulary learning and retention at Irandoostan language Institute in Tabriz. To that end, 50 female learners at the age range of 8-12 were selected and assigned into an experimental (n=25 and a control (n=25 group. The design of the study was quasi-experimental with pretest, immediate posttest and delayed posttest. The content of the tests were based on the students’ course books and consisted of 20 items. The researcher utilized the word games in order to teach the selected vocabulary items during the course which lasted for a month and a half. The games were played each session for about 15 minutes. The experimental group was engaged in playing word games as a treatment and the control group received usual instruction. After the treatment, the participants in both groups took the post-test and after two weeks the learners were asked to take the test once more. This time their scores were assigned as the retention post-test scores. The mean scores of two groups were compared three times through the independent samples t-test. The results of the data analysis revealed that playing word games were effective in helping learners to improve their vocabulary learning and retention.

  14. Word sense disambiguation via high order of learning in complex networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silva, Thiago C.; Amancio, Diego R.

    2012-06-01

    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 correctly unveiled by only traditional techniques. Finally, we exhibit the behavior of the model for different weights of the low- and high-level classifiers by plotting decision boundaries. This study helps one to better understand the effectiveness of the model.

  15. Learning to Read Words in a New Language Shapes the Neural Organization of the Prior Languages

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mei, Leilei; Xue, Gui; Lu, Zhong-Lin; Chen, Chuansheng; Zhang, Mingxia; He, Qinghua; Wei, Miao; Dong, Qi

    2014-01-01

    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 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. PMID:25447375

  16. The role of the phonological loop in English word learning: a comparison of Chinese ESL learners and native speakers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamada, Megumi; Koda, Keiko

    2011-04-01

    Although the role of the phonological loop in word-retention is well documented, research in Chinese character retention suggests the involvement of non-phonological encoding. This study investigated whether the extent to which the phonological loop contributes to learning and remembering visually introduced words varies between college-level Chinese ESL learners (N = 20) and native speakers of English (N = 20). The groups performed a paired associative learning task under two conditions (control versus articulatory suppression) with two word types (regularly spelled versus irregularly spelled words) differing in degree of phonological accessibility. The results demonstrated that both groups' recall declined when the phonological loop was made less available (with irregularly spelled words and in the articulatory suppression condition), but the decline was greater for the native group. These results suggest that word learning entails phonological encoding uniformly across learners, but the contribution of phonology varies among learners with diverse linguistic backgrounds.

  17. Interactive Book Reading to Accelerate Word Learning by Kindergarten Children With Specific Language Impairment: Identifying Adequate Progress and Successful Learning Patterns.

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    Storkel, Holly L; Komesidou, Rouzana; Fleming, Kandace K; Romine, Rebecca Swinburne

    2017-04-20

    The goal of this study was to provide guidance to clinicians on early benchmarks of successful word learning in an interactive book reading treatment and to examine how encoding and memory evolution during treatment contribute to word learning outcomes by kindergarten children with specific language impairment (SLI). Twenty-seven kindergarten children with SLI participated in a preliminary clinical trial using interactive book reading to teach 30 new words. Word learning was assessed at 4 points during treatment through a picture naming test. The results indicate that the following performance during treatment was cause for concern, indicating a need to modify the treatment: naming 0-1 treated words correctly at Naming Test 1; naming 0-2 treated words correctly at Naming Test 2; naming 0-3 treated words correctly at Naming Test 3. In addition, the results showed that encoding was the primary limiting factor in word learning, but rmemory evolution also contributed (albeit to a lesser degree) to word learning success. Case illustrations demonstrate how a clinician's understanding of a child's word learning strengths and weaknesses develop over the course of treatment, substantiating the importance of regular data collection and clinical decision-making to ensure the best possible outcomes for each individual child.

  18. What you learn is what you see: using eye movements to study infant cross-situational word learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Chen; Smith, Linda B

    2011-03-01

    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 paper used an eye tracker to record the moment-by-moment eye movement data of 14-month-old babies in statistical learning tasks. Various measures are applied to such fine-grained temporal data, such as looking duration and shift rate (the number of shifts in gaze from one visual object to the other) trial by trial, showing different eye movement patterns between strong and weak statistical learners. Moreover, an information-theoretic measure is developed and applied to gaze data to quantify the degree of learning uncertainty trial by trial. Next, a simple associative statistical learning model is applied to eye movement data and these simulation results are compared with empirical results from young children, showing strong correlations between these two. This suggests that an associative learning mechanism with selective attention can provide a cognitively plausible model of cross-situational statistical learning. The work represents the first steps in using eye movement data to infer underlying real-time processes in statistical word learning.

  19. Social coordination in toddler's word learning: interacting systems of perception and action

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pereira, Alfredo; Smith, Linda; Yu, Chen

    2008-06-01

    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.

  20. WORDS AS “LEXICAL UNITS” IN LEARNING/TEACHING VOCABULARY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Moisés Almela

    2007-12-01

    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.

  1. The Effects of Interactive Word Walls on Students with Learning Disabilities in the Secondary Science Classroom

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eustace-DeBaun, Casey Elizabeth

    Effective approaches for teaching vocabulary to various populations of learners is a topic of current research (Barr, Eslami, & Malatesha, 2012) yet little research is dedicated to students with learning disabilities in the science classroom. Within this study the interac-tive word wall was used as a tool to build vocabulary and to encourage usage of new sub-ject-specific terminology. The experiment utilized quasi-experimental pre-post test com-parison group design using interrupted time-series (Johnson & Christiensen, 2007) due to the inability to randomize participants and establish a clear control group. The data was collected across four units of terminology and with a student satisfaction survey. Stu-dents reported at least seventy percent satisfaction with the use of Interactive Word Walls and demonstrated some performance increase in both vocabulary retention and reading comprehension when utilizing Interactive Word Walls.

  2. Toddlers learn words in a foreign language: the role of native vocabulary knowledge.

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    Koenig, Melissa; Woodward, Amanda L

    2012-03-01

    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.

  3. Bringing back the body into the mind: gestures enhance word learning in foreign language.

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    Macedonia, Manuela

    2014-01-01

    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.

  4. Rapid Word Learning in 13- and 17-Month-Olds in a Naturalistic Two-Word Procedure: Looking versus Reaching Measures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gurteen, Paula M.; Horne, Pauline J.; Erjavec, Mihela

    2011-01-01

    This study investigated infants' rapid learning of two novel words using a preferential looking measure compared with a preferential reaching measure. In Experiment 1, 21 13-month-olds and 20 17-month-olds were given 12 novel label exposures (6 per trial) for each of two novel objects. Next, in the label comprehension tests, infants were shown…

  5. Triggering word learning in children with Language Impairment: the effect of phonotactic probability and neighbourhood density.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKean, Cristina; Letts, Carolyn; Howard, David

    2014-11-01

    The effect of phonotactic probability (PP) and neighbourhood density (ND) on triggering word learning was examined in children with Language Impairment (3;04-6;09) and compared to Typically Developing children. Nonwords, varying PP and ND orthogonally, were presented in a story context and their learning tested using a referent identification task. Group comparisons with receptive vocabulary as a covariate found no group differences in overall scores or in the influence of PP or ND. Therefore, there was no evidence of atypical lexical or phonological processing. 'Convergent' PP/ND (High PP/High ND; Low PP/Low ND) was optimal for word learning in both groups. This bias interacted with vocabulary knowledge. 'Divergent' PP/ND word scores (High PP/Low ND; Low PP/High ND) were positively correlated with vocabulary so the 'divergence disadvantage' reduced as vocabulary knowledge grew; an interaction hypothesized to represent developmental changes in lexical-phonological processing linked to the emergence of phonological representations.

  6. White matter anisotropy in the ventral language pathway predicts sound-to-word learning success.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wong, Francis C K; Chandrasekaran, Bharath; Garibaldi, Kyla; Wong, Patrick C M

    2011-06-15

    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.

  7. Do iPads promote symbolic understanding and word learning in children with autism?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, Melissa L; Hartley, Calum; Cain, Kate

    2015-01-01

    The use of the Apple iPad has skyrocketed in educational settings, along with largely unsubstantiated claims of its efficacy for learning and communication in children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Here, we examine whether children with ASD are better able to learn new word-referent relations using an iPad or a traditional picture book. We also examine the hypothesis that presenting multiple, differently colored, exemplars of a target referent will promote adaptive label generalization compared to the use of a single exemplar. Sixteen minimally verbal children with ASD were taught a new word in four within-subjects conditions, which varied by media (iPad vs. book) and content (single vs. multiple exemplar presentation). Children were then tested on the ability to symbolically relate the word to a 3-D referent (real-life depicted object) and generalize it to a differently colored category member (another similarly shaped object). The extent of symbolic understanding did not differ between the two media, and levels of generalization did not differ across conditions. However, presentation of multiple exemplars increased the rate that children with ASD extended labels from pictures to depicted objects. Our findings are discussed in terms of the importance of content to picture-based learning and the potential benefits and challenges of using the Apple iPad as an educational resource for children with ASD.

  8. Do iPads promote symbolic understanding and word learning in children with autism?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Melissa eAllen

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available The use of the Apple iPad has skyrocketed in educational settings, along with largely unsubstantiated claims of its efficacy for learning and communication in children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD. Here we examine whether children with ASD are better able to learn new word-referent relations using an iPad or a traditional picture book. We also examine the hypothesis that presenting multiple, differently-coloured, exemplars of a target referent will promote adaptive label generalisation compared to the use of a single exemplar. Sixteen minimally-verbal children with ASD were taught a new word in 4 within-subjects conditions, which varied by media (iPad vs. book and content (single vs. multiple exemplar presentation. Children were then tested on the ability to symbolically relate the word to a 3-D referent (real-life depicted object and generalise it to a differently-coloured category member (another similarly-shaped object. The extent of symbolic understanding did not differ between the two media, and levels of generalisation did not differ across conditions. However, presentation of multiple exemplars increased the rate that children with ASD extended labels from pictures to depicted objects. Our findings are discussed in terms of the importance of content to picture-based learning and the potential benefits and challenges of using the Apple iPad as an educational resource for children with ASD.

  9. Co-viewing supports toddlers' word learning from contingent and noncontingent video.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strouse, Gabrielle A; Troseth, Georgene L; O'Doherty, Katherine D; Saylor, Megan M

    2018-02-01

    Social cues are one way young children determine that a situation is pedagogical in nature-containing information to be learned and generalized. However, some social cues (e.g., contingent gaze and responsiveness) are missing from prerecorded video, a potential reason why toddlers' language learning from video can be inefficient compared with their learning directly from a person. This study explored two methods for supporting children's word learning from video by adding social-communicative cues. A sample of 88 30-month-olds began their participation with a video training phase. In one manipulation, an on-screen actress responded contingently to children through a live video feed (similar to Skype or FaceTime "video chat") or appeared in a prerecorded demonstration. In the other manipulation, parents either modeled responsiveness to the actress's on-screen bids for participation or sat out of their children's view. Children then viewed a labeling demonstration on video, and their knowledge of the label was tested with three-dimensional objects. Results indicated that both on-screen contingency and parent modeling increased children's engagement with the actress during training. However, only parent modeling increased children's subsequent word learning, perhaps by revealing the symbolic (representational) intentions underlying this video. This study highlights the importance of adult co-viewing in helping toddlers to interpret communicative cues from video. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Online incidental statistical learning of audiovisual word sequences in adults: a registered report.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuppuraj, Sengottuvel; Duta, Mihaela; Thompson, Paul; Bishop, Dorothy

    2018-02-01

    Statistical learning has been proposed as a key mechanism in language learning. Our main goal was to examine whether adults are capable of simultaneously extracting statistical dependencies in a task where stimuli include a range of structures amenable to statistical learning within a single paradigm. We devised an online statistical learning task using real word auditory-picture sequences that vary in two dimensions: (i) predictability and (ii) adjacency of dependent elements. This task was followed by an offline recall task to probe learning of each sequence type. We registered three hypotheses with specific predictions. First, adults would extract regular patterns from continuous stream (effect of grammaticality). Second, within grammatical conditions, they would show differential speeding up for each condition as a factor of statistical complexity of the condition and exposure. Third, our novel approach to measure online statistical learning would be reliable in showing individual differences in statistical learning ability. Further, we explored the relation between statistical learning and a measure of verbal short-term memory (STM). Forty-two participants were tested and retested after an interval of at least 3 days on our novel statistical learning task. We analysed the reaction time data using a novel regression discontinuity approach. Consistent with prediction, participants showed a grammaticality effect, agreeing with the predicted order of difficulty for learning different statistical structures. Furthermore, a learning index from the task showed acceptable test-retest reliability ( r  = 0.67). However, STM did not correlate with statistical learning. We discuss the findings noting the benefits of online measures in tracking the learning process.

  11. Syntactic Awareness and Arithmetic Word Problem Solving in Children With and Without Learning Disabilities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peake, Christian; Jiménez, Juan E; Rodríguez, Cristina; Bisschop, Elaine; Villarroel, Rebeca

    2015-01-01

    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 elementary education were formed: children with arithmetic learning disabilities (ALD), children with reading learning disabilities (RLD), and children with comorbid arithmetic and reading learning disabilities (ARLD). Mediation analysis confirmed that SA was a mediator variable for both groups of children with reading disabilities when solving AWPs, but not for children in the ALD group. All groups performed below the control group in the problem solving task. When SA was controlled for, semantic structure and position of the unknown set were variables that affected both groups with ALD. Specifically, children with ALD only were more affected by the place of the unknown set. © Hammill Institute on Disabilities 2014.

  12. Active learning for ontological event extraction incorporating named entity recognition and unknown word handling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, Xu; Kim, Jung-jae; Kwoh, Chee Keong

    2016-01-01

    Biomedical text mining may target various kinds of valuable information embedded in the literature, but a critical obstacle to the extension of the mining targets is the cost of manual construction of labeled data, which are required for state-of-the-art supervised learning systems. Active learning is to choose the most informative documents for the supervised learning in order to reduce the amount of required manual annotations. Previous works of active learning, however, focused on the tasks of entity recognition and protein-protein interactions, but not on event extraction tasks for multiple event types. They also did not consider the evidence of event participants, which might be a clue for the presence of events in unlabeled documents. Moreover, the confidence scores of events produced by event extraction systems are not reliable for ranking documents in terms of informativity for supervised learning. We here propose a novel committee-based active learning method that supports multi-event extraction tasks and employs a new statistical method for informativity estimation instead of using the confidence scores from event extraction systems. Our method is based on a committee of two systems as follows: We first employ an event extraction system to filter potential false negatives among unlabeled documents, from which the system does not extract any event. We then develop a statistical method to rank the potential false negatives of unlabeled documents 1) by using a language model that measures the probabilities of the expression of multiple events in documents and 2) by using a named entity recognition system that locates the named entities that can be event arguments (e.g. proteins). The proposed method further deals with unknown words in test data by using word similarity measures. We also apply our active learning method for the task of named entity recognition. We evaluate the proposed method against the BioNLP Shared Tasks datasets, and show that our method

  13. Collaborative Learning and Iranian EFL learners’ Vocabulary Improvement through Snowball and Word-Webbing Techniques

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Akbar Afghari

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available The present study was an attempt to look into the effect of collaborative learning on the learners’ improvement in vocabulary learning. Moreover, the learners’ attitudes about vocabulary learning were taken into account as well. The study was conducted with the participation of 30 intermediate Iranian EFL (English as a foreign language learners, who were studying in a private language institute. To collect the data, OPT (Oxford Placement Test was applied to check the learners’ proficiency level and meet the homogeneity requirements. Then, the learners took the vocabulary pre- and post-test to check the effectiveness of treatment sessions on the learners’ vocabulary learning. Semi-structured interview was also done to investigate the learners’ awareness regarding learning vocabularies before and after the treatment sessions. Findings showed that the applied collaborative techniques, i.e. word-webbing and snowball techniques paved the way for the experimental group to outperform the control group since improvement in vocabulary learning was found to be significant. Moreover, Qualitative results revealed the occurrence of positive changes in the learners’ attitudes about vocabulary learning since almost all the learners concurred that the above-mentioned collaborative techniques assisted them in their better speaking and, by having more interaction through group work, enjoyable environment was created for learning target vocabularies. It was suggested that collaborative instruction should be implemented in teaching vocabulary as it can pave the way for both teachers and learners to benefit from a communicative language classroom.

  14. Application of different entropy formalisms in a neural network for novel word learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khordad, R.; Rastegar Sedehi, H. R.

    2015-12-01

    In this paper novel word learning in adults is studied. For this goal, four entropy formalisms are employed to include some degree of non-locality in a neural network. The entropy formalisms are Tsallis, Landsberg-Vedral, Kaniadakis, and Abe entropies. First, we have analytically obtained non-extensive cost functions for the all entropies. Then, we have used a generalization of the gradient descent dynamics as a learning rule in a simple perceptron. The Langevin equations are numerically solved and the error function (learning curve) is obtained versus time for different values of the parameters. The influence of index q and number of neuron N on learning is investigated for the all entropies. It is found that learning is a decreasing function of time for the all entropies. The rate of learning for the Landsberg-Vedral entropy is slower than other entropies. The variation of learning with time for the Landsberg-Vedral entropy is not appreciable when the number of neurons increases. It is said that entropy formalism can be used as a means for studying the learning.

  15. What do we do with what we learn? Statistical learning of orthographic regularities impacts written word processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chetail, Fabienne

    2017-06-01

    Individuals rapidly become sensitive to recurrent patterns present in the environment and this occurs in many situations. However, evidence of a role for statistical learning of orthographic regularities in reading is mixed, and its role has peripheral status in current theories of visual word recognition. Additionally, exactly which regularities readers learn to be sensitive to is still unclear. To address these two issues, three experiments were conducted with artificial scripts. In Experiments 1a and 1b, participants were exposed to a flow of artificial words (five characters) for a few minutes, with either two or four bigrams occurring very frequently. In Experiment 2, exposure took place over several days while participants had to learn the orthographic and phonological forms of new words entailing or not frequent bigrams. Sensitivity to these regularities was then tested in a wordlikeness task. Finally, participants performed a letter detection task, with letters being either of high frequency or not in the exposure phase. The results of the wordlikeness task showed that after only a few minutes, readers become sensitive to the positional frequency of letter clusters and to bigram frequency beyond single letter frequency. Moreover, this new knowledge influenced the performance in the letter detection task, with high-frequency letters being detected more rapidly than low-frequency ones. We discuss the implications of such results for models of orthographic encoding and reading. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Learning to read words in a new language shapes the neural organization of the prior languages.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mei, Leilei; Xue, Gui; Lu, Zhong-Lin; Chen, Chuansheng; Zhang, Mingxia; He, Qinghua; Wei, Miao; Dong, Qi

    2014-12-01

    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. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. The Impacts of Presenting New Words in Semantically-Related Sets on Vocabulary Learning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xingrong Wang

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available This paper mainly explores the impacts of presenting new words in semantically-related (SR sets on vocabulary learning. 38 students from two classes of Grade 2 in Taiyuan Foreign Language School (Senior High School Section participate in the whole process. The same vocabulary items unknown to all students are taught to them in 4 lessons. The difference between the experimental group and control group is that words are taught in SR sets in the former and in the latter words belonging to the same SR sets are taught in different lessons. Independent Samples T-test is employed to see if there would be a significant difference between the two groups’ performance in the English-Chinese translation tests of those words. The result shows that there doesn’t exit a significant difference between the two groups in SHT test, but in the LT test two weeks later, SU group performs significantly better than SR group. The research findings may provide some enlightenment for foreign language researchers. Keywords: Semantically-related (SR sets, Senior high school students, Semantic field theory, Interference theory

  18. The Words Children Hear: Picture Books and the Statistics for Language Learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Montag, Jessica L; Jones, Michael N; Smith, Linda B

    2015-09-01

    Young children learn language from the speech they hear. Previous work suggests that greater statistical diversity of words and of linguistic contexts is associated with better language outcomes. One potential source of lexical diversity is the text of picture books that caregivers read aloud to children. Many parents begin reading to their children shortly after birth, so this is potentially an important source of linguistic input for many children. We constructed a corpus of 100 children's picture books and compared word type and token counts in that sample and a matched sample of child-directed speech. Overall, the picture books contained more unique word types than the child-directed speech. Further, individual picture books generally contained more unique word types than length-matched, child-directed conversations. The text of picture books may be an important source of vocabulary for young children, and these findings suggest a mechanism that underlies the language benefits associated with reading to children. © The Author(s) 2015.

  19. Get the story straight: contextual repetition promotes word learning from storybooks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jessica S Horst

    2011-02-01

    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.

  20. GeoSegmenter: A statistically learned Chinese word segmenter for the geoscience domain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Lan; Du, Youfu; Chen, Gongyang

    2015-03-01

    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.

  1. Word Recognition and Learning: Effects of Hearing Loss and Amplification Feature.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pittman, Andrea L; Stewart, Elizabeth C; Willman, Amanda P; Odgear, Ian S

    2017-01-01

    Two amplification features were examined using auditory tasks that varied in stimulus familiarity. It was expected that the benefits of certain amplification features would increase as the familiarity with the stimuli decreased. A total of 20 children and 15 adults with normal hearing as well as 21 children and 17 adults with mild to severe hearing loss participated. Three models of ear-level devices were selected based on the quality of the high-frequency amplification or the digital noise reduction (DNR) they provided. The devices were fitted to each participant and used during testing only. Participants completed three tasks: (a) word recognition, (b) repetition and lexical decision of real and nonsense words, and (c) novel word learning. Performance improved significantly with amplification for both the children and the adults with hearing loss. Performance improved further with wideband amplification for the children more than for the adults. In steady-state noise and multitalker babble, performance decreased for both groups with little to no benefit from amplification or from the use of DNR. When compared with the listeners with normal hearing, significantly poorer performance was observed for both the children and adults with hearing loss on all tasks with few exceptions. Finally, analysis of across-task performance confirmed the hypothesis that benefit increased as the familiarity of the stimuli decreased for wideband amplification but not for DNR. However, users who prefer DNR for listening comfort are not likely to jeopardize their ability to detect and learn new information when using this feature.

  2. High-definition tDCS of the temporo-parietal cortex enhances access to newly learned words.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perceval, Garon; Martin, Andrew K; Copland, David A; Laine, Matti; Meinzer, Marcus

    2017-12-05

    Learning associations between words and their referents is crucial for language learning in the developing and adult brain and for language re-learning after neurological injury. Non-invasive transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) to the posterior temporo-parietal cortex has been suggested to enhance this process. However, previous studies employed standard tDCS set-ups that induce diffuse current flow in the brain, preventing the attribution of stimulation effects to the target region. This study employed high-definition tDCS (HD-tDCS) that allowed the current flow to be constrained to the temporo-parietal cortex, to clarify its role in novel word learning. In a sham-controlled, double-blind, between-subjects design, 50 healthy adults learned associations between legal non-words and unfamiliar object pictures. Participants were stratified by baseline learning ability on a short version of the learning paradigm and pairwise randomized to active (20 mins; N = 25) or sham (40 seconds; N = 25) HD-tDCS. Accuracy was comparable during the baseline and experimental phases in both HD-tDCS conditions. However, active HD-tDCS resulted in faster retrieval of correct word-picture pairs. Our findings corroborate the critical role of the temporo-parietal cortex in novel word learning, which has implications for current theories of language acquisition.

  3. A Tsallis’ statistics based neural network model for novel word learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hadzibeganovic, Tarik; Cannas, Sergio A.

    2009-03-01

    We invoke the Tsallis entropy formalism, a nonextensive entropy measure, to include some degree of non-locality in a neural network that is used for simulation of novel word learning in adults. A generalization of the gradient descent dynamics, realized via nonextensive cost functions, is used as a learning rule in a simple perceptron. The model is first investigated for general properties, and then tested against the empirical data, gathered from simple memorization experiments involving two populations of linguistically different subjects. Numerical solutions of the model equations corresponded to the measured performance states of human learners. In particular, we found that the memorization tasks were executed with rather small but population-specific amounts of nonextensivity, quantified by the entropic index q. Our findings raise the possibility of using entropic nonextensivity as a means of characterizing the degree of complexity of learning in both natural and artificial systems.

  4. The efficacy of dictionary use while reading for learning new words.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamilton, Harley

    2012-01-01

    The researcher investigated the use of three types of dictionaries while reading by high school students with severe to profound hearing loss. The objective of the study was to determine the effectiveness of each type of dictionary for acquiring the meanings of unknown vocabulary in text. The three types of dictionaries were (a) an online bilingual multimedia English-American Sign Language (ASL) dictionary (OBMEAD), (b) a paper English-ASL dictionary (PBEAD), and (c) an online monolingual English dictionary (OMED). It was found that for immediate recall of target words, the OBMEAD was superior to both the PBEAD and the OMED. For later recall, no significant difference appeared between the OBMEAD and the PBEAD. For both of these, recall was statistically superior to recall for words learned via the OMED.

  5. The effect of a word processor as an accommodation for students with learning disabilities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Larry Lewandowski

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available The effects of writing format (handwritten (HW versus word processor (WP were examined in a sample of college students with and without learning disabilities (LD. All students wrote two essays, one in each format, scored for quality and length. Groups did not differ in age, gender, ethnicity, mathematical calculation, writing fluency, essay length or essay quality. The "interaction hypothesis" was not supported, in that the use of a word processor as a writing accommodation did not provide a differential boost to students with LD. Both groups produced longer essays in the WP versus HW condition. The best predictor of essay quality was essay length regardless of writing format. Most students in each group preferred the WP format. Interestingly, a smaller percentage of students in the LD group (72% than NLD group (91% used the available time for writing.

  6. Word Learning in Children With Cochlear Implants: Examining Performance Relative to Hearing Peers and Relations With Age at Implantation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pimperton, Hannah; Walker, Elizabeth A

    2018-02-22

    This study had two key objectives. First, to examine whether children who receive cochlear implants (CIs) before the age of 3 years and who are experienced implant users (mean length of CI use = 6 years; range = 4 to 9 years) show deficits on a word learning task relative to their hearing peers. Second, to examine whether variation in age at implantation within the first 3 years of life relates to later word learning abilities. Twenty-one 6- to 10-year-old children with CIs, 21 chronological age-matched (AM) hearing children, and 21 vocabulary-matched hearing children completed an auditory word learning task in which they were required to learn the names of eight rare animals. Comprehension and production probes tested their learning of these unfamiliar words. The children with CIs performed similarly to AM peers on the comprehension phase of the word learning task. Their production performance was significantly poorer than the AM group but was in line with that of their younger vocabulary-matched hearing peers. Differences between the CI and AM groups were accounted for by differences between the groups in terms of their existing vocabulary knowledge. Within the CI group, there was no evidence of an association between age at implantation and performance on the word learning task, but existing vocabulary size showed strong positive correlations with word learning performance, after adjustment for chronological age. When implanted by the age of 3 years, and with over 4 years CI experience, 6- to 10-year-old children are able to perform similarly to their AM hearing peers in terms of their comprehension of newly learned words. Producing accurate phonological forms of newly learned words may be a more challenging task for children with CIs, but their production performance is consistent with their vocabulary size. This cross-sectional study provides support for a relationship between existing vocabulary size and novel word learning skills in children with CIs; future

  7. Numerical morphology supports early number word learning: Evidence from a comparison of young Mandarin and English learners.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Le Corre, Mathieu; Li, Peggy; Huang, Becky H; Jia, Gisela; Carey, Susan

    2016-08-01

    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. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  8. Numerical morphology supports early number word learning: Evidence from a comparison of young Mandarin and English learners

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corre, Mathieu Le; Li, Peggy; Huang, Becky H.; Jia, Gisela; Carey, Susan

    2016-01-01

    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. PMID:27423486

  9. Executive dysfunction can explain word-list learning disability in very mild Alzheimer's disease: the Tajiri project.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hashimoto, Ryusaku; Meguro, Kenichi; Yamaguchi, Satoshi; Ishizaki, Junichi; Ishii, Hiroshi; Meguro, Mitsue; Sekita, Yasuyoshi

    2004-02-01

    Elderly people with questionable dementia (i.e. a Clinical Dementia Rating (CDR) of 0.5) have been focused on as representing the borderline zone condition between healthy people and dementia patients. Many of them are known to have pathologic traits of very mild Alzheimer's disease (AD). Although they present mild memory disorder, the underlying mechanism has not been fully investigated. Herein is reported the mechanism of learning disability in very mild AD. Eighty-six CDR 0.5 participants and 101 age- and education-matched healthy controls (CDR 0) were randomly selected from a community in the town of Tajiri, Miyagi Prefecture. The word-recall task of the Alzheimer Disease Assessment Scale-Japanese (i.e. learning and recall of 10 words) was administered. The numbers of words recalled in each trial and those never recalled throughout the trials were compared for the two CDR groups. The serial-position function was depicted for three parts (i.e. primary, middle, and recency). The CDR 0.5 group recalled significantly fewer words than the CDR 0 group. The number of never-recalled words was greater in the CDR 0.5 group. A remarkable difference was found in the middle part of the word list. The number of never-recalled words of the CDR 0.5 group was greater in the middle part. The large number of never-recalled words accounted for the poor learning performance of very mild AD participants. The results suggested that very mild AD participants have difficulty in learning and retaining words in the middle part of the word-list because of a functional decline of the central executive system.

  10. Theory of mind selectively predicts preschoolers' knowledge-based selective word learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brosseau-Liard, Patricia; Penney, Danielle; Poulin-Dubois, Diane

    2015-11-01

    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. © 2015 The British Psychological Society.

  11. Theory of mind selectively predicts preschoolers’ knowledge-based selective word learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brosseau-Liard, Patricia; Penney, Danielle; Poulin-Dubois, Diane

    2015-01-01

    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. PMID:26211504

  12. Effects of classroom bilingualism on task-shifting, verbal memory, and word learning in children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaushanskaya, Margarita; Gross, Megan; Buac, Milijana

    2014-07-01

    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. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  13. Effects of Classroom Bilingualism on Task Shifting, Verbal Memory, and Word Learning in Children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaushanskaya, Margarita; Gross, Megan; Buac, Milijana

    2014-01-01

    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 two 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. PMID:24576079

  14. Theta Coherence Asymmetry in the Dorsal Stream of Musicians Facilitates Word Learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elmer, Stefan; Albrecht, Joëlle; Valizadeh, Seyed Abolfazl; François, Clément; Rodríguez-Fornells, Antoni

    2018-03-15

    Word learning constitutes a human faculty which is dependent upon two anatomically distinct processing streams projecting from posterior superior temporal (pST) and inferior parietal (IP) brain regions toward the prefrontal cortex (dorsal stream) and the temporal pole (ventral stream). The ventral stream is involved in mapping sensory and phonological information onto lexical-semantic representations, whereas the dorsal stream contributes to sound-to-motor mapping, articulation, complex sequencing in the verbal domain, and to how verbal information is encoded, stored, and rehearsed from memory. In the present source-based EEG study, we evaluated functional connectivity between the IP lobe and Broca's area while musicians and non-musicians learned pseudowords presented in the form of concatenated auditory streams. Behavioral results demonstrated that musicians outperformed non-musicians, as reflected by a higher sensitivity index (d'). This behavioral superiority was paralleled by increased left-hemispheric theta coherence in the dorsal stream, whereas non-musicians showed stronger functional connectivity in the right hemisphere. Since no between-group differences were observed in a passive listening control condition nor during rest, results point to a task-specific intertwining between musical expertise, functional connectivity, and word learning.

  15. Eye-tracking the time-course of novel word learning and lexical competition in adults and children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weighall, A R; Henderson, L M; Barr, D J; Cairney, S A; Gaskell, M G

    2017-04-01

    Lexical competition is a hallmark of proficient, automatic word recognition. Previous research suggests that there is a delay before a new spoken word becomes engaged in this process, with sleep playing an important role. However, data from one method - the visual world paradigm - consistently show competition without a delay. We trained 42 adults and 40 children (aged 7-8) on novel word-object pairings, and employed this paradigm to measure the time-course of lexical competition. Fixations to novel objects upon hearing existing words (e.g., looks to the novel object biscal upon hearing "click on the biscuit") were compared to fixations on untrained objects. Novel word-object pairings learned immediately before testing and those learned the previous day exhibited significant competition effects, with stronger competition for the previous day pairings for children but not adults. Crucially, this competition effect was significantly smaller for novel than existing competitors (e.g., looks to candy upon hearing "click on the candle"), suggesting that novel items may not compete for recognition like fully-fledged lexical items, even after 24h. Explicit memory (cued recall) was superior for words learned the day before testing, particularly for children; this effect (but not the lexical competition effects) correlated with sleep-spindle density. Together, the results suggest that different aspects of new word learning follow different time courses: visual world competition effects can emerge swiftly, but are qualitatively different from those observed with established words, and are less reliant upon sleep. Furthermore, the findings fit with the view that word learning earlier in development is boosted by sleep to a greater degree. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  16. Vocabulary learning in a Yorkshire terrier: slow mapping of spoken words.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ulrike Griebel

    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.

  17. Vocabulary Learning in a Yorkshire Terrier: Slow Mapping of Spoken Words

    Science.gov (United States)

    Griebel, Ulrike; Oller, D. Kimbrough

    2012-01-01

    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. PMID:22363421

  18. Limits on Monolingualism? A Comparison of Monolingual and Bilingual Infants’ Abilities to Integrate Lexical Tone in Novel Word Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, Leher; Poh, Felicia L. S.; Fu, Charlene S. L.

    2016-01-01

    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 12–13 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 12–13 months under a different set of conditions. Later, at 17–18 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. PMID:27242584

  19. Effect of Phonetic Association on Lexis Learning in Natural Language Context: A Comparative Study of English, French and Turkish Words

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ebubekir, Bozavli

    2017-01-01

    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…

  20. "In Our Own Words": Creating Videos as Teaching and Learning Tools

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Norda Majekodunmi

    2012-11-01

    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.

  1. IMAGE ANNOTATION BASED ON BAG OF VISUAL WORDS AND OPTIMIZED SEMI-SUPERVISED LEARNING METHOD

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jun Li

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available This paper proposes a new approach to annotate image. First, in order to precisely model training data, shape context features of each image is represented as a bag of visual words. Then, we specifically design a novel optimized graph-based semi-supervised learning for image annotation, in which we maximize the average weighed distance between the different semantic objects, and minimize the average weighed distance between the same semantic objects. Training data insufficiency and lack of generalization of learning method can be resolved through OGSSL with significantly improved image semantic annotation performance. This approach is compared with several other approaches. The experimental results show that this approach performs more effectively and accurately.

  2. The Effect of Number and Presentation Order of High-Constraint Sentences on Second Language Word Learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Tengfei; Chen, Ran; Dunlap, Susan; Chen, Baoguo

    2016-01-01

    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.

  3. Computational Modeling of Statistical Learning: Effects of Transitional Probability versus Frequency and Links to Word Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mirman, Daniel; Estes, Katharine Graf; Magnuson, James S.

    2010-01-01

    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…

  4. Dynamic assessment of word learning skills of pre-school children with primary language impairment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Camilleri, Bernard; Law, James

    2014-10-01

    Dynamic assessment has been shown to have considerable theoretical and clinical significance in the assessment of socially disadvantaged and culturally and linguistically diverse children. In this study it is used to enhance assessment of pre-school children with primary language impairment. The purpose of the study was to determine whether a dynamic assessment (DA) has the potential to enhance the predictive capacity of a static measure of receptive vocabulary in pre-school children. Forty pre-school children were assessed using the static British Picture Vocabulary Scale (BPVS), a DA of word learning potential and an assessment of non-verbal cognitive ability. Thirty-seven children were followed up 6 months later and re-assessed using the BPVS. Although the predictive capacity of the static measure was found to be substantial, the DA increased this significantly especially for children with static scores below the 25th centile. The DA of children's word learning has the potential to add value to the static assessment of the child with low language skills, to predict subsequent receptive vocabulary skills and to increase the chance of correctly identifying children in need of ongoing support.

  5. How Iconicity Helps People Learn New Words: Neural Correlates and Individual Differences in Sound-Symbolic Bootstrapping

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gwilym Lockwood

    2016-07-01

    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

  6. The Effect of Shyness on Children's Formation and Retention of Novel Word-Object Mappings

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hilton, Matt; Westermann, Gert

    2017-01-01

    This study set out to examine whether shyness, an aversion to novelty and unfamiliar social situations, can affect the processes that underlie early word learning. Twenty-four-month-old children (n = 32 ) were presented with sets of one novel and two familiar objects, and it was found that shyer children were less likely to select a novel object…

  7. A preliminary examination of vocabulary and word learning in African American toddlers from middle and low socioeconomic status homes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horton-Ikard, RaMonda; Ellis Weismer, Susan

    2007-11-01

    This study examined the effect of socioeconomic status (SES) on the early lexical performance of African American children. Thirty African American toddlers (30 to 40 months old) from low-SES (n = 15) and middle-SES (n = 15) backgrounds participated in the study. Their lexical-semantic performance was examined on 2 norm-referenced standardized tests of vocabulary, a measure of lexical diversity (number of different words) derived from language samples, and a fast mapping task that examined novel word learning. Toddlers from low-SES homes performed significantly poorer than those from middle-SES homes on standardized receptive and expressive vocabulary tests and on the number of different words used in spontaneous speech. No significant SES group differences were observed in their ability to learn novel word meanings on a fast mapping task. The influence of socioeconomic background on African American children's lexical semantic tasks varies with the type of measure used.

  8. Stored word sequences in language learning: the effect of familiarity on children's repetition of four-word combinations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bannard, Colin; Matthews, Danielle

    2008-03-01

    Recent accounts of the development of grammar propose that children remember utterances they hear and draw generalizations over these stored exemplars. This study tested these accounts' assumption that children store utterances as wholes by testing memory for familiar sequences of words. Using a newly available, dense corpus of child-directed speech, we identified frequently occurring chunks in the input (e.g., sit in your chair) and matched them to infrequent sequences (e.g., sit in your truck). We tested young children's ability to produce these sequences in a sentence-repetition test. Three-year-olds (n= 21) and 2-year-olds (n= 17) were significantly more likely to repeat frequent sequences correctly than to repeat infrequent sequences correctly. Moreover, the 3-year-olds were significantly faster to repeat the first three words of an item if they formed part of a chunk (e.g., they were quicker to say sit in your when the following word was chair than when it was truck). We discuss the implications of these results for theories of language development and processing.

  9. Second Language Word Learning through Repetition and Imitation: Functional Networks as a Function of Learning Phase and Language Distance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghazi-Saidi, Ladan; Ansaldo, Ana Ines

    2017-01-01

    Introduction and Aim : Repetition and imitation are among the oldest second language (L2) teaching approaches and are frequently used in the context of L2 learning and language therapy, despite some heavy criticism. Current neuroimaging techniques allow the neural mechanisms underlying repetition and imitation to be examined. This fMRI study examines the influence of verbal repetition and imitation on network configuration. Integration changes within and between the cognitive control and language networks were studied, in a pair of linguistically close languages (Spanish and French), and compared to our previous work on a distant language pair (Ghazi-Saidi et al., 2013). Methods : Twelve healthy native Spanish-speaking (L1) adults, and 12 healthy native Persian-speaking adults learned 130 new French (L2) words, through a computerized audiovisual repetition and imitation program. The program presented colored photos of objects. Participants were instructed to look at each photo and pronounce its name as closely as possible to the native template (imitate). Repetition was encouraged as many times as necessary to learn the object's name; phonological cues were provided if necessary. Participants practiced for 15 min, over 30 days, and were tested while naming the same items during fMRI scanning, at week 1 (shallow learning phase) and week 4 (consolidation phase) of training. To compare this set of data with our previous work on Persian speakers, a similar data analysis plan including accuracy rates (AR), response times (RT), and functional integration values for the language and cognitive control network at each measure point was included, with further L1-L2 direct comparisons across the two populations. Results and Discussion : The evidence shows that learning L2 words through repetition induces neuroplasticity at the network level. Specifically, L2 word learners showed increased network integration after 3 weeks of training, with both close and distant language

  10. Second Language Word Learning through Repetition and Imitation: Functional Networks as a Function of Learning Phase and Language Distance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghazi-Saidi, Ladan; Ansaldo, Ana Ines

    2017-01-01

    Introduction and Aim: Repetition and imitation are among the oldest second language (L2) teaching approaches and are frequently used in the context of L2 learning and language therapy, despite some heavy criticism. Current neuroimaging techniques allow the neural mechanisms underlying repetition and imitation to be examined. This fMRI study examines the influence of verbal repetition and imitation on network configuration. Integration changes within and between the cognitive control and language networks were studied, in a pair of linguistically close languages (Spanish and French), and compared to our previous work on a distant language pair (Ghazi-Saidi et al., 2013). Methods: Twelve healthy native Spanish-speaking (L1) adults, and 12 healthy native Persian-speaking adults learned 130 new French (L2) words, through a computerized audiovisual repetition and imitation program. The program presented colored photos of objects. Participants were instructed to look at each photo and pronounce its name as closely as possible to the native template (imitate). Repetition was encouraged as many times as necessary to learn the object’s name; phonological cues were provided if necessary. Participants practiced for 15 min, over 30 days, and were tested while naming the same items during fMRI scanning, at week 1 (shallow learning phase) and week 4 (consolidation phase) of training. To compare this set of data with our previous work on Persian speakers, a similar data analysis plan including accuracy rates (AR), response times (RT), and functional integration values for the language and cognitive control network at each measure point was included, with further L1-L2 direct comparisons across the two populations. Results and Discussion: The evidence shows that learning L2 words through repetition induces neuroplasticity at the network level. Specifically, L2 word learners showed increased network integration after 3 weeks of training, with both close and distant language pairs

  11. More Than Words: The Role of Multiword Sequences in Language Learning and Use.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christiansen, Morten H; Arnon, Inbal

    2017-07-01

    The ability to convey our thoughts using an infinite number of linguistic expressions is one of the hallmarks of human language. Understanding the nature of the psychological mechanisms and representations that give rise to this unique productivity is a fundamental goal for the cognitive sciences. A long-standing hypothesis is that single words and rules form the basic building blocks of linguistic productivity, with multiword sequences being treated as units only in peripheral cases such as idioms. The new millennium, however, has seen a shift toward construing multiword linguistic units not as linguistic rarities, but as important building blocks for language acquisition and processing. This shift-which originated within theoretical approaches that emphasize language learning and use-has far-reaching implications for theories of language representation, processing, and acquisition. Incorporating multiword units as integral building blocks blurs the distinction between grammar and lexicon; calls for models of production and comprehension that can accommodate and give rise to the effect of multiword information on processing; and highlights the importance of such units to learning. In this special topic, we bring together cutting-edge work on multiword sequences in theoretical linguistics, first-language acquisition, psycholinguistics, computational modeling, and second-language learning to present a comprehensive overview of the prominence and importance of such units in language, their possible role in explaining differences between first- and second-language learning, and the challenges the combined findings pose for theories of language. Copyright © 2017 Cognitive Science Society, Inc.

  12. Targeted memory reactivation of newly learned words during sleep triggers REM-mediated integration of new memories and existing knowledge.

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    Tamminen, Jakke; Lambon Ralph, Matthew A; Lewis, Penelope A

    2017-01-01

    Recent memories are spontaneously reactivated during sleep, leading to their gradual strengthening. Whether reactivation also mediates the integration of new memories with existing knowledge is unknown. We used targeted memory reactivation (TMR) during slow-wave sleep (SWS) to selectively cue reactivation of newly learned spoken words. While integration of new words into their phonological neighbourhood was observed in both cued and uncued words after sleep, TMR-triggered integration was predicted by the time spent in rapid eye movement (REM) sleep. These data support complementary roles for SWS and REM in memory consolidation. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. The Comparison between Contextual Guessing Strategies vs. Memorizing a List of Isolated Words in Vocabulary Learning Regarding Long Term Memory

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    Leyla Vakili S AMIYAN

    2014-03-01

    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.

  14. Mandarin-English Bilinguals Process Lexical Tones in Newly Learned Words in Accordance with the Language Context.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carolyn Quam

    Full Text Available 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.

  15. Mandarin-English Bilinguals Process Lexical Tones in Newly Learned Words in Accordance with the Language Context.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quam, Carolyn; Creel, Sarah C

    2017-01-01

    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.

  16. Mandarin-English Bilinguals Process Lexical Tones in Newly Learned Words in Accordance with the Language Context

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quam, Carolyn; Creel, Sarah C.

    2017-01-01

    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

  17. Examining the direct and indirect effects of visual-verbal paired associate learning on Chinese word reading.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Georgiou, George; Liu, Cuina; Xu, Shiyang

    2017-08-01

    Associative learning, traditionally measured with paired associate learning (PAL) tasks, has been found to predict reading ability in several languages. However, it remains unclear whether it also predicts word reading in Chinese, which is known for its ambiguous print-sound correspondences, and whether its effects are direct or indirect through the effects of other reading-related skills such as phonological awareness and rapid naming. Thus, the purpose of this study was to examine the direct and indirect effects of visual-verbal PAL on word reading in an unselected sample of Chinese children followed from the second to the third kindergarten year. A sample of 141 second-year kindergarten children (71 girls and 70 boys; mean age=58.99months, SD=3.17) were followed for a year and were assessed at both times on measures of visual-verbal PAL, rapid naming, and phonological awareness. In the third kindergarten year, they were also assessed on word reading. The results of path analysis showed that visual-verbal PAL exerted a significant direct effect on word reading that was independent of the effects of phonological awareness and rapid naming. However, it also exerted significant indirect effects through phonological awareness. Taken together, these findings suggest that variations in cross-modal associative learning (as measured by visual-verbal PAL) place constraints on the development of word recognition skills irrespective of the characteristics of the orthography children are learning to read. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Working memory and novel word learning in children with hearing impairment and children with specific language impairment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hansson, K; Forsberg, J; Löfqvist, A; Mäki-Torkko, E; Sahlén, B

    2004-01-01

    Working memory is considered to influence a range of linguistic skills, i.e. vocabulary acquisition, sentence comprehension and reading. Several studies have pointed to limitations of working memory in children with specific language impairment. Few studies, however, have explored the role of working memory for language deficits in children with hearing impairment. The first aim was to compare children with mild-to-moderate bilateral sensorineural hearing impairment, children with a preschool diagnosis of specific language impairment and children with normal language development, aged 9-12 years, for language and working memory. The special focus was on the role of working memory in learning new words for primary school age children. The assessment of working memory included tests of phonological short-term memory and complex working memory. Novel word learning was assessed according to the methods of. In addition, a range of language tests was used to assess language comprehension, output phonology and reading. Children with hearing impairment performed significantly better than children with a preschool diagnosis of specific language impairment on tasks assessing novel word learning, complex working memory, sentence comprehension and reading accuracy. No significant correlation was found between phonological short-term memory and novel word learning in any group. The best predictor of novel word learning in children with specific language impairment and in children with hearing impairment was complex working memory. Furthermore, there was a close relationship between complex working memory and language in children with a preschool diagnosis of specific language impairment but not in children with hearing impairment. Complex working memory seems to play a significant role in vocabulary acquisition in primary school age children. The interpretation is that the results support theories suggesting a weakened influence of phonological short-term memory on novel word

  19. Media-Assisted Language Learning for Young Children: Effects of a Word-Learning App on the Vocabulary Acquisition of Two-Year-Olds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walter-Laager, Catherine; Brandenberg, Kathrin; Tinguely, Luzia; Schwarz, Jürg; Pfiffner, Manfred R.; Moschner, Barbara

    2017-01-01

    The intervention study investigated the effects of an interactive word-learning app Learning apps are developed to achieve certain aims. In our case, the intention was to enrich the vocabulary acquisition of young children. Many other apps, such as games, are developed mainly for entertainment. The intention of games apps is to hold the attention…

  20. Bilingual and Monolingual Children Attend to Different Cues When Learning New Words

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brojde, Chandra L.; Ahmed, Sabeen; Colunga, Eliana

    2012-01-01

    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. PMID:22654777

  1. Learning the Language of Locomotion: Do Children Use Biomechanical Structure to Constrain Hypotheses about Word Meaning?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malt, Barbara C.; White, Anne; Ameel, Eef; Storms, Gert

    2016-01-01

    Much has been said about children's strategies for mapping elements of meaning to words in toddlerhood. However, children continue to refine word meanings and patterns of word use into middle childhood and beyond, even for common words appearing in early vocabulary. We address where children past toddlerhood diverge from adults and where they more…

  2. Mechanisms underlying accent accommodation in early word learning: evidence for general expansion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmale, Rachel; Seidl, Amanda; Cristia, Alejandrina

    2015-07-01

    Previous work reveals that toddlers can accommodate a novel accent after hearing it for only a brief period of time. A common assumption is that children, like adults, cope with nonstandard pronunciations by relying on words they know (e.g. 'this person pronounces sock as sack, therefore by black she meant block'). In this paper, we assess whether toddlers might additionally use a general expansion strategy, whereby they simply accept non-standard pronunciations when variability is expected. We exposed a group of 24-month-old English-learning toddlers to variability in indexical cues (very diverse voices from native English talkers), and another to variability in social cues (very diverse-looking silent actors); neither group was familiarized with the target novel accent. At test, both groups succeeded in recognizing a novel word when spoken in the novel accent. Thus, even when no lexical cues are available, variability can prepare young children for non-standard pronunciations. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  3. A perceptual advantage for onomatopoeia in early word learning: Evidence from eye-tracking.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laing, Catherine E

    2017-09-01

    A perceptual advantage for iconic forms in infant language learning has been widely reported in the literature, termed the "sound symbolism bootstrapping hypothesis" by Imai and Kita (2014). However, empirical research in this area is limited mainly to sound symbolic forms, which are very common in languages such as Japanese but less so in Indo-European languages such as English. In this study, we extended this body of research to onomatopoeia-words that are thought to be present across most of the world's languages and that are known to be dominant in infants' early lexicons. In a picture-mapping task, 10- and 11-month-old infants showed a processing advantage for onomatopoeia (e.g., woof woof) over their conventional counterparts (e.g., doggie). However, further analysis suggests that the input may play a key role in infants' experience and processing of these forms. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. You know what it is: learning words through listening to hip-hop.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chesley, Paula

    2011-01-01

    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.

  5. Relationships between music training, speech processing, and word learning: a network perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elmer, Stefan; Jäncke, Lutz

    2018-03-15

    Numerous studies have documented the behavioral advantages conferred on professional musicians and children undergoing music training in processing speech sounds varying in the spectral and temporal dimensions. These beneficial effects have previously often been associated with local functional and structural changes in the auditory cortex (AC). However, this perspective is oversimplified, in that it does not take into account the intrinsic organization of the human brain, namely, neural networks and oscillatory dynamics. Therefore, we propose a new framework for extending these previous findings to a network perspective by integrating multimodal imaging, electrophysiology, and neural oscillations. In particular, we provide concrete examples of how functional and structural connectivity can be used to model simple neural circuits exerting a modulatory influence on AC activity. In addition, we describe how such a network approach can be used for better comprehending the beneficial effects of music training on more complex speech functions, such as word learning. © 2018 New York Academy of Sciences.

  6. Investigation of learning environment for arithmetic word problems by problem posing as sentence integration in Indonesian language

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hasanah, N.; Hayashi, Y.; Hirashima, T.

    2017-02-01

    Arithmetic word problems remain one of the most difficult area of teaching mathematics. Learning by problem posing has been suggested as an effective way to improve students’ understanding. However, the practice in usual classroom is difficult due to extra time needed for assessment and giving feedback to students’ posed problems. To address this issue, we have developed a tablet PC software named Monsakun for learning by posing arithmetic word problems based on Triplet Structure Model. It uses the mechanism of sentence-integration, an efficient implementation of problem-posing that enables agent-assessment of posed problems. The learning environment has been used in actual Japanese elementary school classrooms and the effectiveness has been confirmed in previous researches. In this study, ten Indonesian elementary school students living in Japan participated in a learning session of problem posing using Monsakun in Indonesian language. We analyzed their learning activities and show that students were able to interact with the structure of simple word problem using this learning environment. The results of data analysis and questionnaire suggested that the use of Monsakun provides a way of creating an interactive and fun environment for learning by problem posing for Indonesian elementary school students.

  7. The Effect of Learning Modality and Auditory Feedback on Word Memory: Cochlear-Implanted versus Normal-Hearing Adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taitelbaum-Swead, Riki; Icht, Michal; Mama, Yaniv

    2017-03-01

    In recent years, the effect of cognitive abilities on the achievements of cochlear implant (CI) users has been evaluated. Some studies have suggested that gaps between CI users and normal-hearing (NH) peers in cognitive tasks are modality specific, and occur only in auditory tasks. The present study focused on the effect of learning modality (auditory, visual) and auditory feedback on word memory in young adults who were prelingually deafened and received CIs before the age of 5 yr, and their NH peers. A production effect (PE) paradigm was used, in which participants learned familiar study words by vocal production (saying aloud) or by no-production (silent reading or listening). Words were presented (1) in the visual modality (written) and (2) in the auditory modality (heard). CI users performed the visual condition twice-once with the implant ON and once with it OFF. All conditions were followed by free recall tests. Twelve young adults, long-term CI users, implanted between ages 1.7 and 4.5 yr, and who showed ≥50% in monosyllabic consonant-vowel-consonant open-set test with their implants were enrolled. A group of 14 age-matched NH young adults served as the comparison group. For each condition, we calculated the proportion of study words recalled. Mixed-measures analysis of variances were carried out with group (NH, CI) as a between-subjects variable, and learning condition (aloud or silent reading) as a within-subject variable. Following this, paired sample t tests were used to evaluate the PE size (differences between aloud and silent words) and overall recall ratios (aloud and silent words combined) in each of the learning conditions. With visual word presentation, young adults with CIs (regardless of implant status CI-ON or CI-OFF), showed comparable memory performance (and a similar PE) to NH peers. However, with auditory presentation, young adults with CIs showed poorer memory for nonproduced words (hence a larger PE) relative to their NH peers. The

  8. Detecting Abnormal Word Utterances in Children With Autism Spectrum Disorders: Machine-Learning-Based Voice Analysis Versus Speech Therapists.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakai, Yasushi; Takiguchi, Tetsuya; Matsui, Gakuyo; Yamaoka, Noriko; Takada, Satoshi

    2017-10-01

    Abnormal prosody is often evident in the voice intonations of individuals with autism spectrum disorders. We compared a machine-learning-based voice analysis with human hearing judgments made by 10 speech therapists for classifying children with autism spectrum disorders ( n = 30) and typical development ( n = 51). Using stimuli limited to single-word utterances, machine-learning-based voice analysis was superior to speech therapist judgments. There was a significantly higher true-positive than false-negative rate for machine-learning-based voice analysis but not for speech therapists. Results are discussed in terms of some artificiality of clinician judgments based on single-word utterances, and the objectivity machine-learning-based voice analysis adds to judging abnormal prosody.

  9. Pre-learning stress differentially affects long-term memory for emotional words, depending on temporal proximity to the learning experience.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zoladz, Phillip R; Clark, Brianne; Warnecke, Ashlee; Smith, Lindsay; Tabar, Jennifer; Talbot, Jeffery N

    2011-07-06

    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. Copyright © 2011. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  10. Age-related behavioural and neurofunctional patterns of second language word learning: different ways of being successful.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marcotte, Karine; Ansaldo, Ana Inés

    2014-08-01

    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. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Young children learning Spanish make rapid use of grammatical gender in spoken word recognition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lew-Williams, Casey; Fernald, Anne

    2007-03-01

    All nouns in Spanish have grammatical gender, with obligatory gender marking on preceding articles (e.g., la and el, the feminine and masculine forms of "the," respectively). Adult native speakers of languages with grammatical gender exploit this cue in on-line sentence interpretation. In a study investigating the early development of this ability, Spanish-learning children (34-42 months) were tested in an eye-tracking procedure. Presented with pairs of pictures with names of either the same grammatical gender (la pelota, "ball [feminine]"; la galleta, "cookie [feminine]") or different grammatical gender (la pelota; el zapato, "shoe [masculine]"), they heard sentences referring to one picture (Encuentra la pelota, "Find the ball"). The children were faster to orient to the referent on different-gender trials, when the article was potentially informative, than on same-gender trials, when it was not, and this ability was correlated with productive measures of lexical and grammatical competence. Spanish-learning children who can speak only 500 words already use gender-marked articles in establishing reference, a processing advantage characteristic of native Spanish-speaking adults.

  12. Morphing into Adolescents: Active Word Learning for English-Language Learners and Their Classmates in Middle School

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kieffer, Michael J.; Lesaux, Nonie K.

    2010-01-01

    Many students arrive at middle school without the academic language skills they need to read sophisticated texts with comprehension. In particular, English language learners and students from low-income backgrounds attending underresourced, urban middle schools lack opportunities to learn the thousands of academic words they need to succeed. To…

  13. The Role of Addressee Backchannels and Conversational Grounding in Vicarious Word Learning in Four-Year-Olds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tolins, Jackson; Namiranian, Neda; Akhtar, Nameera; Fox Tree, Jean E.

    2017-01-01

    Children successfully learn words through overhearing others engaged in verbal interactions. The current studies investigated the degree to which four-year-old overhearers are influenced by the response behaviors of addressees and by the interactional pattern of the speakers and addressees. It was found that while addressee responses on their own…

  14. Comparison of the Effects of SMART Board Technology and Flash Card Instruction on Sight Word Recognition and Observational Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mechling, Linda C.; Gast, David L.; Thompson, Kimberly L.

    2009-01-01

    This study compared the effectiveness of SMART Board, interactive whiteboard technology and traditional flash cards in teaching reading in a small-group instructional arrangement. Three students with moderate intellectual disabilities were taught to read grocery store aisle marker words under each condition. Observational learning (students…

  15. Effect of Speaker Gaze on Word Learning in Fragile X Syndrome: A Comparison with Nonsyndromic Autism Spectrum Disorder

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benjamin, David P.; McDuffie, Andrea S.; Thurman, Angela J.; Kover, Sara T.; Mastergeorge, Ann M.; Hagerman, Randi J.; Abbeduto, Leonard

    2015-01-01

    Purpose: This study examined use of a speaker's direction of gaze during word learning by boys with fragile X syndrome (FXS), boys with nonsyndromic autism spectrum disorder (ASD), and typically developing (TD) boys. Method: A fast-mapping task with follow-in and discrepant labeling conditions was administered. We expected that the use of speaker…

  16. You Sound Like Mommy: Bilingual and Monolingual Infants Learn Words Best from Speakers Typical of Their Language Environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fennell, Christopher; Byers-Heinlein, Krista

    2014-01-01

    Previous research indicates that monolingual infants have difficulty learning minimal pairs (i.e., words differing by one phoneme) produced by a speaker uncharacteristic of their language environment and that bilinguals might share this difficulty. To clearly reveal infants' underlying phonological representations, we minimized task demands by…

  17. Getting the Bugs out with PESTS: A Mnemonic Approach to Spelling Sight Words for Students with Learning Disabilities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howard, Sue; DaDeppo, Lisa M. W.; De La Paz, Susan

    2008-01-01

    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,…

  18. Implicit and Explicit Mechanisms of Word Learning in a Narrative Context: An Event-Related Potential Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Batterink, Laura; Neville, Helen

    2011-01-01

    The vast majority of word meanings are learned simply by extracting them from context rather than by rote memorization or explicit instruction. Although this skill is remarkable, little is known about the brain mechanisms involved. In the present study, ERPs were recorded as participants read stories in which pseudowords were presented multiple…

  19. Phonological memory and word learning deficits in children with specific language impairment: A role for perceptual context?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moav-Scheff, Ronny; Yifat, Rachel; Banai, Karen

    2015-01-01

    Sensitivity to perceptual context (anchoring) has been suggested to contribute to the development of both oral- and written-language skills, but studies of this idea in children have been rare. To determine whether deficient anchoring contributes to the phonological memory and word learning deficits of children with specific language impairment (SLI). 84 preschool children with and without SLI participated in the study. Anchoring to repeated items was evaluated in two tasks - a phonological memory task and a pseudo-word learning task. Compared to children with typical development, children with SLI had poorer phonological memory spans and learned fewer words during the word learning task. In both tasks the poorer performance of children with SLI reflected a smaller effect of anchoring that was manifested in a smaller effect of item repetition on performance. Furthermore, across the entire sample anchoring was significantly correlated with performance in vocabulary and grammar tasks. These findings are consistent with the hypothesis that anchoring contributes to language skills and that children with SLI have impaired anchoring, although further studies are required to determine the role of anchoring in language development. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. The Relationships among Verbal Short-Term Memory, Phonological Awareness, and New Word Learning: Evidence from Typical Development and Down Syndrome

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jarrold, Christopher; Thorn, Annabel S. C.; Stephens, Emma

    2009-01-01

    This study examined the correlates of new word learning in a sample of 64 typically developing children between 5 and 8 years of age and a group of 22 teenagers and young adults with Down syndrome. Verbal short-term memory and phonological awareness skills were assessed to determine whether learning new words involved accurately representing…

  1. The effects of age on the learning and forgetting of primacy, middle, and recency components of a multi-trial word list.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Griffin, Jason W; John, Samantha E; Adams, Jason W; Bussell, Cara A; Saurman, Jessica L; Gavett, Brandon E

    2017-11-01

    The serial position effect reveals that recall of a supraspan list of words follows a predictable pattern, whereby words at the beginning (primacy) and end (recency) of a list are recalled more easily than words in the middle. This effect has typically been studied using single list-learning trials, but in neuropsychology, multi-trial list-learning tests are more commonly used. The current study examined trends in learning for primacy, middle, and recency effects across multiple trials in younger and older age cohorts. Participants were 158 volunteers, including 79 adults aged 17-36 ("younger" group) and 79 adults aged 54-89 years ("older" group). Each participant completed four learning trials and one delayed (5-10 min) recall trial from the Memory Assessment Scales. Scores were divided into primacy (first four words), middle (middle four words), and recency (final four words) scores for all trials. For list acquisition, mixed effects modeling examined the main effects of and interactions between learning slope (logarithmic), age group, and serial position. Rate of learning increased logarithmically over four trials and varied by serial position, with growth of middle and recency word acquisition increasing more rapidly than recall of primacy words; this interaction did not differ by age group. Delayed retention differed according to age group and serial position; both older and younger adults demonstrated similar retention for primacy words, but older adults showed reduced retention for middle and recency words. Although older adults acquired less information across learning trials, the reason for this reduced acquisition was related to initial learning, not to rate of learning over time. Older compared to younger adults were less efficient at transferring middle and recency words from short-term to long-term memory.

  2. The Influence of Child-Directed Speech on Word Learning and Comprehension

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foursha-Stevenson, Cassandra; Schembri, Taylor; Nicoladis, Elena; Eriksen, Cody

    2017-01-01

    This paper describes an investigation into the function of child-directed speech (CDS) across development. In the first experiment, 10-21-month-olds were presented with familiar words in CDS and trained on novel words in CDS or adult-directed speech (ADS). All children preferred the matching display for familiar words. However, only older toddlers…

  3. Caregivers' Gestures Direct Infant Attention during Early Word Learning: The Importance of Dynamic Synchrony

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rader, Nancy de Villiers; Zukow-Goldring, Patricia

    2012-01-01

    How do young infants discover word meanings? We have theorized that caregivers educate infants' attention (cf. Gibson, J.J., 1966) by synchronizing the saying of a word with a dynamic gesture displaying the object/referent (Zukow-Goldring, 1997). Detecting an amodal invariant across gesture and speech brackets the word and object within the…

  4. English-learning one- to two-year-olds do not show a consonant bias in word learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Floccia, Caroline; Nazzi, Thierry; Delle Luche, Claire; Poltrock, Silvana; Goslin, Jeremy

    2014-09-01

    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 ambiguity by using an interactive word-learning study similar to that used in French, with British-English-learning toddlers aged 1;4 and 1;11. Children were taught two CVC labels differing on either a consonant or vowel and tested on their pairing of a third object named with one of the previously taught labels, or part of them. In concert with previous research on British-English toddlers, our results provided no evidence of a general consonant bias. The language-specific mechanisms explaining the differential status for consonants and vowels in lexical development are discussed.

  5. The effect of shyness on children's formation and retention of novel word-object mappings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hilton, Matt; Westermann, Gert

    2017-11-01

    This study set out to examine whether shyness, an aversion to novelty and unfamiliar social situations, can affect the processes that underlie early word learning. Twenty-four-month-old children (n =32) were presented with sets of one novel and two familiar objects, and it was found that shyer children were less likely to select a novel object as the referent of a novel label. Furthermore, not-shy children then showed evidence of retaining these novel mappings, but shy children did not. These findings suggest that shy children's aversion to novelty and to the unfamiliar context can impact on their word learning.

  6. What's in a Word? Concept mapping: a graphical tool to reinforce learning of epidemiological concepts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berglund, Anita

    2015-12-01

    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. Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. For permission to use (where not already granted under a licence) please go to http://www.bmj.com/company/products-services/rights-and-licensing/

  7. Learning across languages: bilingual experience supports dual language statistical word segmentation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Antovich, Dylan M; Graf Estes, Katharine

    2018-03-01

    Bilingual acquisition presents learning challenges beyond those found in monolingual environments, including the need to segment speech in two languages. Infants may use statistical cues, such as syllable-level transitional probabilities, to segment words from fluent speech. In the present study we assessed monolingual and bilingual 14-month-olds' abilities to segment two artificial languages using transitional probability cues. In Experiment 1, monolingual infants successfully segmented the speech streams when the languages were presented individually. However, monolinguals did not segment the same language stimuli when they were presented together in interleaved segments, mimicking the language switches inherent to bilingual speech. To assess the effect of real-world bilingual experience on dual language speech segmentation, Experiment 2 tested infants with regular exposure to two languages using the same interleaved language stimuli as Experiment 1. The bilingual infants in Experiment 2 successfully segmented the languages, indicating that early exposure to two languages supports infants' abilities to segment dual language speech using transitional probability cues. These findings support the notion that early bilingual exposure prepares infants to navigate challenging aspects of dual language environments as they begin to acquire two languages. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  8. You know what it is: learning words through listening to hip-hop.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paula Chesley

    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.

  9. You Know What It Is: Learning Words through Listening to Hip-Hop

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chesley, Paula

    2011-01-01

    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. PMID:22205942

  10. Fast Mapping, Slow Learning: Disambiguation of Novel Word-Object Mappings in Relation to Vocabulary Learning at 18, 24, and 30 Months

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bion, Ricardo A. H.; Borovsky, Arielle; Fernald, Anne

    2013-01-01

    When hearing a novel name, children tend to select a novel object rather than a familiar one, a bias known as disambiguation. Using online processing measures with 18-, 24-, and 30-month-olds, we investigate how the development of this bias relates to word learning. Children's proportion of looking time to a novel object after hearing a novel name…

  11. The Effect of Explicit Instruction of Clustering New Words on Vocabulary Learning of Iranian Intermediate EFL Learners through Hyperlinks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hassan Soleimani

    2012-07-01

    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.

  12. Rapid word-learning in normal-hearing and hearing-impaired children: effects of age, receptive vocabulary, and high-frequency amplification.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pittman, A L; Lewis, D E; Hoover, B M; Stelmachowicz, P G

    2005-12-01

    This study examined rapid word-learning in 5- to 14-year-old children with normal and impaired hearing. The effects of age and receptive vocabulary were examined as well as those of high-frequency amplification. Novel words were low-pass filtered at 4 kHz (typical of current amplification devices) and at 9 kHz. It was hypothesized that (1) the children with normal hearing would learn more words than the children with hearing loss, (2) word-learning would increase with age and receptive vocabulary for both groups, and (3) both groups would benefit from a broader frequency bandwidth. Sixty children with normal hearing and 37 children with moderate sensorineural hearing losses participated in this study. Each child viewed a 4-minute animated slideshow containing 8 nonsense words created using the 24 English consonant phonemes (3 consonants per word). Each word was repeated 3 times. Half of the 8 words were low-pass filtered at 4 kHz and half were filtered at 9 kHz. After viewing the story twice, each child was asked to identify the words from among pictures in the slide show. Before testing, a measure of current receptive vocabulary was obtained using the Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test (PPVT-III). The PPVT-III scores of the hearing-impaired children were consistently poorer than those of the normal-hearing children across the age range tested. A similar pattern of results was observed for word-learning in that the performance of the hearing-impaired children was significantly poorer than that of the normal-hearing children. Further analysis of the PPVT and word-learning scores suggested that although word-learning was reduced in the hearing-impaired children, their performance was consistent with their receptive vocabularies. Additionally, no correlation was found between overall performance and the age of identification, age of amplification, or years of amplification in the children with hearing loss. Results also revealed a small increase in performance for both

  13. Classification of Word Levels with Usage Frequency, Expert Opinions and Machine Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sohsah, Gihad N.; Ünal, Muhammed Esad; Güzey, Onur

    2015-01-01

    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…

  14. The Longevity of Statistical Learning: When Infant Memory Decays, Isolated Words Come to the Rescue

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karaman, Ferhat; Hay, Jessica F.

    2018-01-01

    Research over the past 2 decades has demonstrated that infants are equipped with remarkable computational abilities that allow them to find words in continuous speech. Infants can encode information about the transitional probability (TP) between syllables to segment words from artificial and natural languages. As previous research has tested…

  15. The Effect of Frequency of Input-Enhancements on Word Learning and Text Comprehension

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rott, Susanne

    2007-01-01

    Research on second language lexical development during reading has found positive effects for word frequency, the provision of glosses, and elaborative word processing. However, findings have been inconclusive regarding the effect of such intervention tasks on long-term retention. Likewise, few studies have looked at the cumulative effect of…

  16. Acquiring Orthographic Processing through Word Reading: Evidence from Children Learning to Read French and English

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pasquarella, Adrian; Deacon, Helene; Chen, Becky X.; Commissaire, Eva; Au-Yeung, Karen

    2014-01-01

    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…

  17. Incremental Learning of Difficult Words in Story Contexts: The Role of Spelling and Pronouncing New Vocabulary

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vadasy, Patricia F.; Sanders, Elizabeth A.

    2015-01-01

    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…

  18. A Conceptual Paper on the Application of the Picture Word Inductive Model Using Bruner's Constructivist View of Learning and the Cognitive Load Theory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Xuan; Perkins, Kyle

    2013-01-01

    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…

  19. Supervised Learning and Knowledge-Based Approaches Applied to Biomedical Word Sense Disambiguation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Antunes, Rui; Matos, Sérgio

    2017-12-13

    Word sense disambiguation (WSD) is an important step in biomedical text mining, which is responsible for assigning an unequivocal concept to an ambiguous term, improving the accuracy of biomedical information extraction systems. In this work we followed supervised and knowledge-based disambiguation approaches, with the best results obtained by supervised means. In the supervised method we used bag-of-words as local features, and word embeddings as global features. In the knowledge-based method we combined word embeddings, concept textual definitions extracted from the UMLS database, and concept association values calculated from the MeSH co-occurrence counts from MEDLINE articles. Also, in the knowledge-based method, we tested different word embedding averaging functions to calculate the surrounding context vectors, with the goal to give more importance to closest words of the ambiguous term. The MSH WSD dataset, the most common dataset used for evaluating biomedical concept disambiguation, was used to evaluate our methods. We obtained a top accuracy of 95.6 % by supervised means, while the best knowledge-based accuracy was 87.4 %. Our results show that word embedding models improved the disambiguation accuracy, proving to be a powerful resource in the WSD task.

  20. Word prediction

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rumelhart, D.E.; Skokowski, P.G.; Martin, B.O.

    1995-05-01

    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.

  1. "Poetry Is Not a Special Club": How Has an Introduction to the Secondary Discourse of Spoken Word Made Poetry a Memorable Learning Experience for Young People?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dymoke, Sue

    2017-01-01

    This paper explores the impact of a Spoken Word Education Programme (SWEP hereafter) on young people's engagement with poetry in a group of schools in London, UK. It does so with reference to the secondary Discourses of school-based learning and the Spoken Word community, an artistic "community of practice" into which they were being…

  2. Effects of pre-learning stress on memory for neutral, positive and negative words: Different roles of cortisol and autonomic arousal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwabe, Lars; Bohringer, Andreas; Chatterjee, Monischa; Schachinger, Hartmut

    2008-07-01

    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.

  3. Effect of phonotactic probability and neighborhood density on word-learning configuration by preschoolers with typical development and specific language impairment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gray, Shelley; Pittman, Andrea; Weinhold, Juliet

    2014-06-01

    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). One hundred thirty-one children participated: 48 with SLI, 44 with TD matched on age and gender, and 39 with TD matched on vocabulary and gender. Referent identification and naming were assessed in a computer-based learning context. For referent identification, preschoolers with TD benefited from high phonotactic probability, and the younger group also benefited from low neighborhood density. In contrast, the SLI group benefited only from high neighborhood density. For naming, older preschoolers with TD benefited most from low-density words, younger preschoolers with TD benefited most from words with high phonotactic probability, and the SLI group showed no advantage. Phonotactic probability and neighborhood density had different effects on each group that may be related to children's ability to store well-specified word forms and to the size of their extant lexicon. The authors argue that cross-study comparisons of word learning are needed; therefore, researchers should describe word, referent, and learner characteristics and the learning context and should situate their studies in a triggering → configuration + engagement model of word learning.

  4. Conceptual distance and word learning: patterns of acquisition in Samoan-English bilingual children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hemsley, Gayle; Holm, Alison; Dodd, Barbara

    2013-09-01

    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. Each word type had varying phonological and conceptual difference between Samoan (L1) and English (L2). Results highlighted conceptual distance between L1 and L2 as a key factor in L2 lexical acquisition. The children acquired L2 lexical items earlier if their conceptual representation was similar to that of L1. Words with greater conceptual distance between L1 and L2 emerged more slowly. This suggests that L1 knowledge influences L2 lexical consolidation for sequential bilinguals. Words that require a conceptual shift from L1 take longer to consolidate and strengthen within the L2 lexicon.

  5. Learning connective-based word representations for implicit discourse relation identification

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Braud, Chloé Elodie; Denis, Pascal

    2016-01-01

    We introduce a simple semi-supervised ap-proach to improve implicit discourse relation identification. This approach harnesses large amounts of automatically extracted discourse connectives along with their arguments to con-struct new distributional word representations. Specifically, we represen...... their simplicity, these connective-based rep-resentations outperform various off-the-shelf word embeddings, and achieve state-of-the-art performance on this problem.......We introduce a simple semi-supervised ap-proach to improve implicit discourse relation identification. This approach harnesses large amounts of automatically extracted discourse connectives along with their arguments to con-struct new distributional word representations. Specifically, we represent...... words in the space of discourse connectives as a way to directly encode their rhetorical function. Experiments on the Penn Discourse Treebank demonstrate the effectiveness of these task-tailored repre-sentations in predicting implicit discourse re-lations. Our results indeed show that, despite...

  6. Word recognition strategies amongst isiXhosa/English bilingual learners: The interaction of orthography and language of learning and teaching

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tracy Probert

    2016-05-01

    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

  7. Word recognition strategies amongst isiXhosa/English bilingual learners: The interaction of orthography and language of learning and teaching

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tracy Probert

    2016-03-01

    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

  8. WordSpy: identifying transcription factor binding motifs by building a dictionary and learning a grammar.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Guandong; Yu, Taotao; Zhang, Weixiong

    2005-07-01

    Transcription factor (TF) binding sites or motifs (TFBMs) are functional cis-regulatory DNA sequences that play an essential role in gene transcriptional regulation. Although many experimental and computational methods have been developed, finding TFBMs remains a challenging problem. We propose and develop a novel dictionary based motif finding algorithm, which we call WordSpy. One significant feature of WordSpy is the combination of a word counting method and a statistical model which consists of a dictionary of motifs and a grammar specifying their usage. The algorithm is suitable for genome-wide motif finding; it is capable of discovering hundreds of motifs from a large set of promoters in a single run. We further enhance WordSpy by applying gene expression information to separate true TFBMs from spurious ones, and by incorporating negative sequences to identify discriminative motifs. In addition, we also use randomly selected promoters from the genome to evaluate the significance of the discovered motifs. The output from WordSpy consists of an ordered list of putative motifs and a set of regulatory sequences with motif binding sites highlighted. The web server of WordSpy is available at http://cic.cs.wustl.edu/wordspy.

  9. The Beginning Spanish Lexicon: A Web-based interface to calculate phonological similarity among Spanish words in adults learning Spanish as a foreign language.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vitevitch, Michael S; Stamer, Melissa K; Kieweg, Douglas

    2012-01-01

    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.

  10. Learning and memory for sequences of pictures, words, and spatial locations: an exploration of serial position effects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonk, William J; Healy, Alice F

    2010-01-01

    A serial reproduction of order with distractors task was developed to make it possible to observe successive snapshots of the learning process at each serial position. The new task was used to explore the effect of several variables on serial memory performance: stimulus content (words, blanks, and pictures), presentation condition (spatial information vs. none), semantically categorized item clustering (grouped vs. ungrouped), and number of distractors relative to targets (none, equal, double). These encoding and retrieval variables, along with learning attempt number, affected both overall performance levels and the shape of the serial position function, although a large and extensive primacy advantage and a small 1-item recency advantage were found in each case. These results were explained well by a version of the scale-independent memory, perception, and learning model that accounted for improved performance by increasing the value of only a single parameter that reflects reduced interference from distant items.

  11. Learning new vocabulary in German: the effects of inferring word meanings, type of feedback, and time of test.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carpenter, Shana K; Sachs, Riebana E; Martin, Beth; Schmidt, Kristian; Looft, Ruxandra

    2012-02-01

    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.

  12. Unsupervised learning of temporal features for word categorization in a spiking neural network model of the auditory brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Higgins, Irina; Stringer, Simon; Schnupp, Jan

    2017-01-01

    The nature of the code used in the auditory cortex to represent complex auditory stimuli, such as naturally spoken words, remains a matter of debate. Here we argue that such representations are encoded by stable spatio-temporal patterns of firing within cell assemblies known as polychronous groups, or PGs. We develop a physiologically grounded, unsupervised spiking neural network model of the auditory brain with local, biologically realistic, spike-time dependent plasticity (STDP) learning, and show that the plastic cortical layers of the network develop PGs which convey substantially more information about the speaker independent identity of two naturally spoken word stimuli than does rate encoding that ignores the precise spike timings. We furthermore demonstrate that such informative PGs can only develop if the input spatio-temporal spike patterns to the plastic cortical areas of the model are relatively stable.

  13. Word 2013 for dummies

    CERN Document Server

    Gookin, Dan

    2013-01-01

    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

  14. The effects of audibility and novel word learning ability on vocabulary level in children with cochlear implants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davidson, Lisa S; Geers, Ann E; Nicholas, Johanna G

    2014-07-01

    A novel word learning (NWL) paradigm was used to explore underlying phonological and cognitive mechanisms responsible for delayed vocabulary level in children with cochlear implants (CIs). One hundred and one children using CIs, 6-12 years old, were tested along with 47 children with normal hearing (NH). Tests of NWL, receptive vocabulary, and speech perception at 2 loudness levels were administered to children with CIs. Those with NH completed the NWL task and a receptive vocabulary test. CI participants with good audibility (GA) versus poor audibility (PA) were compared on all measures. Analysis of variance was used to compare performance across the children with NH and the two groups of children with CIs. Multiple regression analysis was employed to identify independent predictors of vocabulary outcomes. Children with CIs in the GA group scored higher in receptive vocabulary and NWL than children in the PA group, although they did not reach NH levels. CI-aided pure tone threshold and performance on the NWL task predicted independent variance in vocabulary after accounting for other known predictors. Acquiring spoken vocabulary is facilitated by GA with a CI and phonological learning and memory skills. Children with CIs did not learn novel words at the same rate or achieve the same receptive vocabulary levels as their NH peers. Maximizing audibility for the perception of speech and direct instruction of new vocabulary may be necessary for children with CIs to reach levels seen in peers with NH.

  15. When left is not right: handedness effects on learning object-manipulation words using pictures with left- or right-handed first-person perspectives.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Nooijer, Jacqueline A; van Gog, Tamara; Paas, Fred; Zwaan, Rolf A

    2013-12-01

    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.

  16. Some words on Word

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    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 [74]). In the philosophy of language the word was often considered to be the primary bearer of meaning. Lexicography has as its fundamental role

  17. KNOWLEDGE HUB: SPIRAL MATRIX THINKING AS A COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGY FOR INDIVIDUAL AND GROUP LEARNING IN ONE DRIVE AND WORD ONLINE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Наталья Валерьевна Комиссарова

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available The article represents the modification of the Knowledge Hub communicative technique of teaching English and other disciplines based on the OneDrive\\Word-online cloud service. Specific options for the organization of group work and individual activities are considered. The article highlights the advantage and the efficiency of teaching and learning by the BYOD (Bring Your Own Device mode. The paper includes examples of organizing of mass support of the study of the course of English for Business and Entrepreneurship (MOOC-Coursera and of information technology of the Humanities program in the computer class and relying on BYOD mobile Internet access of students.

  18. Six-Word Memoirs: A Content Analysis of First-Year Course Learning Outcomes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rubin, Lisa

    2016-01-01

    First-year courses prepare students for the transition to, and success in, college. Institutions are interested in assessing student learning outcomes to achieve institutional goals and maintain accreditation. Though it may be difficult to measure student learning and success, colleges aim to assess student learning in the classroom by setting…

  19. Examining Child and Word Characteristics in Vocabulary Learning of Struggling Readers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elleman, Amy M.; Steacy, Laura M.; Olinghouse, Natalie G.; Compton, Donald L.

    2017-01-01

    Although instruction has been shown to be effective at increasing vocabulary knowledge and comprehension, factors most important for promoting the acquisition of novel vocabulary are less known. In addition, few vocabulary studies have utilized models that simultaneously take into account child-level, word-level, and instructional factors to…

  20. How Does Prior Word Knowledge Affect Vocabulary Learning Progress in an Extensive Reading Program?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Webb, Stuart; Chang, Anna C.-S.

    2015-01-01

    Sixty English as a foreign language learners were divided into high-, intermediate-, and low-level groups based on their scores on pretests of target vocabulary and Vocabulary Levels Test scores. The participants read 10 Level 1 and 10 Level 2 graded readers over 37 weeks during two terms. Two sets of 100 target words were chosen from each set of…

  1. Semantic Representation of Newly Learned L2 Words and Their Integration in the L2 Lexicon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bordag, Denisa; Kirschenbaum, Amit; Rogahn, Maria; Opitz, Andreas

    2017-01-01

    The present semantic priming study explores the integration of newly learnt L2 German words into the L2 semantic network of German advanced learners. It provides additional evidence in support of earlier findings reporting semantic inhibition effects for emergent representations. An inhibitory mechanism is proposed that temporarily decreases the…

  2. Conceptual Distance and Word Learning: Patterns of Acquisition in Samoan-English Bilingual Children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hemsley, Gayle; Holm, Alison; Dodd, Barbara

    2013-01-01

    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.…

  3. Semantic and phonological influences on visual word learning in a transparent language.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suárez-Coalla, Paz; Cuetos, Fernando

    2017-04-01

    Orthographic representations of words are indispensable for reading fluency. The ways in which these representations are developed and their resistance to decay are hotly debated topics. The aim of this study was to investigate the influence of semantic and phonological representations on the formation of orthographic representations in a transparent orthography. In order to achieve this objective, an experiment with three conditions was carried out. In the first condition, a group of university students were asked to repeatedly read 10 new words after semantic and phonological training, in the second condition another group of participants read the new words after phonological training, and in the third condition participants read without previous training. Finally, a follow-up session was performed to test the resistance to decay of the orthographic representations. The results showed that participants who had received semantic training formed the representations faster than participants in the other conditions, as indicated by the decrease in length effect. These results indicate the important role of previous knowledge when people face new written words. A month later these orthographic representations still remained in the lexicon of the participants.

  4. Comparative study between deep learning and bag of visual words for wild-animal recognition

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Okafor, Emmanuel; Pawara, Pornntiwa; Karaaba, Mahir; Surinta, Olarik; Codreanu, Valeriu; Schomaker, Lambert; Wiering, Marco

    2017-01-01

    © 2016 IEEE.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

  5. The Building Blocks of Writing: Learning to Write Letters and Spell Words

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ritchey, Kristen D.

    2008-01-01

    This study examined the development of beginning writing skills in kindergarten and the relationship between early writing skills and early reading skills. Sixty children were assessed on beginning writing skills (including letter writing, individual sound spelling, and real and nonsense word spelling) and beginning reading skills (including…

  6. Learning to Solve Addition and Subtraction Word Problems in English as an Imported Language

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verzosa, Debbie Bautista; Mulligan, Joanne

    2013-01-01

    This paper reports an intervention phase of a design study aimed to assist second-grade Filipino children in solving addition word problems in English, a language they primarily encounter only in school. With Filipino as the medium of instruction, an out-of-school pedagogical intervention providing linguistic and representational scaffolds was…

  7. Toddlers' Use of Grammatical and Social Cues to Learn Novel Words

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paquette-Smith, Melissa; Johnson, Elizabeth K.

    2016-01-01

    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…

  8. Comparative Study Between Deep Learning and Bag of Visual Words for Wild-Animal Recognition

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Okafor, Emmanuel; Pawara, Pornntiwa; Karaaba, Mahir; Surinta, Olarik; Codreanu, Valeriu; Schomaker, Lambertus; Wiering, Marco

    2016-01-01

    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

  9. Novel word learning: An eye-tracking study. Are 18-month-old late talkers really different from their typical peers?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ellis, Erica M; Borovsky, Arielle; Elman, Jeffrey L; Evans, Julia L

    2015-01-01

    Infants, 18-24 months old who have difficulty learning words compared to their peers are often referred to as "late talkers" (LTs). These children are at risk for continued language delays as they grow older. One critical question is how to best identify which LTs will have language disorders, such as Specific Language Impairment (SLI) at school age, in order to maximize the opportunity for early and appropriate intervention and support. Recent research suggests that LTs are not only slower to learn and speak words than their peers, but are also slower to recognize and interpret known words in real time. This investigation examined online moment-by-moment processing of novel word learning in 18-month-olds. A low vocabulary, late talking group (LT, N=14) and an age and cognitive-level matched typical group (TYP, N=14) of infants participated in an eye-tracked novel word learning task and completed standardized testing of vocabulary and cognitive ability. Infants were trained on two novel word-picture pairs and then were tested using an adaptation of the looking while listening paradigm. Results suggest that there are differences between groups in the time-course of looking to the novel target picture during testing. These findings suggest that LTs and typical infants developed strong enough representations to recognize novel words using traditional measures of accuracy and reaction time, however interesting group differences emerge when using additional fine-grained processing measures. Implications for differences in emerging knowledge and learning patterns are discussed. The reader will be able to understand many benefits of using eye-tracking methods to study young infant and toddler populations with and without language disorders. Readers will learn that examining moment-by-moment time course of novel word learning allows additional insight into different learning patterns. Finally, readers should understand the data from this article suggest late talkers may

  10. The Influence of Computer-Mediated Word-of-Mouth Communication on Student Perceptions of Instructors and Attitudes toward Learning Course Content

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwards, Chad; Edwards, Autumn; Qing, Qingmei; Wahl, Shawn T.

    2007-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to experimentally test the influence of computer-mediated word-of-mouth communication (WOM) on student perceptions of instructors (attractiveness and credibility) and on student attitudes toward learning course content (affective learning and state motivation). It was hypothesized that students who receive positive…

  11. Benefits of augmentative signs in word learning: Evidence from children who are deaf/hard of hearing and children with specific language impairment

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Berkel-van Hoof, L. van; Hermans, D.; Knoors, H.E.T.; Verhoeven, L.T.W.

    2016-01-01

    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

  12. A picture is worth a thousand words: Portraying language learning experiences in a bilingual school in Honduras

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Esther Bettney

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available This qualitative study explored the experience of students learning English in an early partial one-way immersion program in Honduras. While immersion research is well-established in various parts of the world, scarce research has focused on programs in Central America. It is important to consider this geographical context as models of bilingual education must be adapted to the local student population (de Mejía, 2002. To address this research gap, written reflections were collected from 203 Grades 1 to 11 students in a one-way immersion program. Through pictures and words, students portrayed their experiences learning English. Two main themes emerged: 1 students’ views of their language learning process, and 2 perceived factors which contributed to the learning of English. These themes are discussed in light of key immersion research on student language proficiency, maximizing output, and meaningful language use. This study confirmed results from other immersion studies in certain areas such as the importance of maximizing output, while also demonstrating the importance of continuing to explore students’ learning experiences within the Latin American context.

  13. WORD LEVEL DISCRIMINATIVE TRAINING FOR HANDWRITTEN WORD RECOGNITION

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Chen, W.; Gader, P.

    2004-01-01

    Word level training refers to the process of learning the parameters of a word recognition system based on word level criteria functions. Previously, researchers trained lexicon­driven handwritten word recognition systems at the character level individually. These systems generally use statistical

  14. Naming facilitation therapy how many words can be learned this way?

    OpenAIRE

    Conlon, Frances

    2012-01-01

    non-peer-reviewed Background: Facilitation therapy has been shown to result in improvements in picture naming as a result of repeated presentation of stimuli. In aphasic subjects greater accuracy is seen (Howard et al 1985) and for non aphasic subjects faster responses (Wheldon and Monsell 1992). The mechanism of therapy is thought to be repetition priming, which increases the connection between the meaning and the lexical form of the word. This should show no recency or pri...

  15. Effects of Mathematics Anxiety and Mathematical Metacognition on Word Problem Solving in Children with and without Mathematical Learning Difficulties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lai, Yinghui; Zhu, Xiaoshuang; Chen, Yinghe; Li, Yanjun

    2015-01-01

    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. PMID:26090806

  16. Effects of Mathematics Anxiety and Mathematical Metacognition on Word Problem Solving in Children with and without Mathematical Learning Difficulties.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lai, Yinghui; Zhu, Xiaoshuang; Chen, Yinghe; Li, Yanjun

    2015-01-01

    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.

  17. WordPress Bible

    CERN Document Server

    Brazell, Aaron

    2010-01-01

    The WordPress Bible provides a complete and thorough guide to the largest self hosted blogging tool. This guide starts by covering the basics of WordPress such as installing and the principles of blogging, marketing and social media interaction, but then quickly ramps the reader up to more intermediate to advanced level topics such as plugins, WordPress Loop, themes and templates, custom fields, caching, security and more. The WordPress Bible is the only complete resource one needs to learning WordPress from beginning to end.

  18. Theoretical Principles to Guide the Teaching of Adjectives to Children Who Struggle With Word Learning: Synthesis of Experimental and Naturalistic Research With Principles of Learning Theory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ricks, Samantha L; Alt, Mary

    2016-07-01

    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. Given that there are almost no treatment studies to guide this topic, we have synthesized findings from experimental and theoretical literature to come up with a principles-based approach to treatment. We provide a sample lesson plan, incorporating our 3 theoretical principles, and describe the materials chosen and methods used during treatment and assessment. This approach is theoretically motivated, but it needs to be empirically tested.

  19. Tracking lexical consolidation with ERPs: Lexical and semantic-priming effects on N400 and LPC responses to newly-learned words.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bakker, Iske; Takashima, Atsuko; van Hell, Janet G; Janzen, Gabriele; McQueen, James M

    2015-12-01

    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. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. The effect of post-learning presentation of music on long-term word-list retention.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Judde, Sarah; Rickard, Nikki

    2010-07-01

    Memory consolidation processes occur slowly over time, allowing recently formed memories to be altered soon after acquisition. Although post-learning arousal treatments have been found to modulate memory consolidation, examination of the temporal parameters of these effects in humans has been limited. In the current study, 127 participants learned a neutral word list and were exposed to either a positively or negatively arousing musical piece following delays of 0, 20 or 45min. One-week later, participants completed a long-term memory recognition test, followed by Carver and White's (1994) approach/avoidance personality scales. Retention was significantly enhanced, regardless of valence, when the emotion manipulation occurred at 20min, but not immediately or 45min, post-learning. Further, the 20min interval effect was found to be moderated by high 'drive' approach sensitivity. The selective facilitatory conditions of music identified in the current study (timing and personality) offer valuable insights for future development of more specified memory intervention strategies.

  1. Check This Word Out! Exploring the Factors That Affect Students’ Vocabulary Learning Using Smartphones via Partial Least Squares

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohammad Madallh Alhabahba

    2014-01-01

    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.

  2. The relation of salivary cortisol to patterns of performance on a word list learning task in healthy older adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suhr, Julie; Demireva, Petya; Heffner, Kathi

    2008-10-01

    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.

  3. Constraints on Tone Sensitivity in Novel Word Learning by Monolingual and Bilingual Infants: Tone Properties Are More Influential than Tone Familiarity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burnham, Denis; Singh, Leher; Mattock, Karen; Woo, Pei J.; Kalashnikova, Marina

    2018-01-01

    This study compared tone sensitivity in monolingual and bilingual infants in a novel word learning task. Tone language learning infants (Experiment 1, Mandarin monolingual; Experiment 2, Mandarin-English bilingual) were tested with Mandarin (native) or Thai (non-native) lexical tone pairs which contrasted static vs. dynamic (high vs. rising) tones or dynamic vs. dynamic (rising vs. falling) tones. Non-tone language, English-learning infants (Experiment 3) were tested on English intonational contrasts or the Mandarin or Thai tone contrasts. Monolingual Mandarin language infants were able to bind tones to novel words for the Mandarin High-Rising contrast, but not for the Mandarin Rising-Falling contrast; and they were insensitive to both the High-Rising and the Rising-Falling tone contrasts in Thai. Bilingual English-Mandarin infants were similar to the Mandarin monolinguals in that they were sensitive to the Mandarin High-Rising contrast and not to the Mandarin Rising-Falling contrast. However, unlike the Mandarin monolinguals, they were also sensitive to the High Rising contrast in Thai. Monolingual English learning infants were insensitive to all three types of contrasts (Mandarin, Thai, English), although they did respond differentially to tone-bearing vs. intonation-marked words. Findings suggest that infants' sensitivity to tones in word learning contexts depends heavily on tone properties, and that this influence is, in some cases, stronger than effects of language familiarity. Moreover, bilingual infants demonstrated greater phonological flexibility in tone interpretation. PMID:29354077

  4. Effects of classwide peer tutoring on the acquisition, maintenance, and generalization of science vocabulary words for seventh grade students with learning disabilities and/or low achievement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nobel, Michele Mcmahon

    2005-07-01

    This study investigated the effects of classwide peer tutoring (CWPT) on the acquisition, maintenance, and generalization of science vocabulary words and definitions. Participants were 14 seventh grade students at-risk for failure in a general education science course; 3 students had learning disabilities and 2 had a communication disorder. CWPT was conducted daily for 20 minutes during the last period of the school day. Procedures for CWPT were consistent with the Ohio State University CWPT model. Students were engaged in dyadic, reciprocal tutoring. Tutors presented word cards to tutees to identify the word and definition. Tutors praised correct responses and used a correction procedure for incorrect responses. After practicing their vocabulary words, students completed a daily testing procedure and recorded and plotted data. Many of the study's findings are consistent with previous studies using CWPT to teach word identification. Results of this study indicate a functional relationship between CWPT and acquisition of science vocabulary. All students were able to acquire words and definitions. Results for maintenance and generalization varied. When acquisition criterion was changed, maintenance and generalization scores increased for some students, while other students remained consistently high. All students reported that they enjoyed CWPT, and all but student stated it helped them learn science vocabulary.

  5. Rehabilitation of Hemianopic Dyslexia: Are Words Necessary for Re-Learning Oculomotor Control?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schuett, Susanne; Heywood, Charles A.; Kentridge, Robert W.; Zihl, Josef

    2008-01-01

    Unilateral homonymous visual field disorders after brain damage are frequently associated with a severe impairment of reading, called hemianopic dyslexia. A specific treatment method has been developed which allows patients to regain sufficient reading performance by re-learning eye-movement control in reading through systematic oculomotor…

  6. Improving the Fraction Word Problem Solving of Students with Mathematics Learning Disabilities: Interactive Computer Application

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shin, Mikyung; Bryant, Diane P.

    2017-01-01

    Students with mathematics learning disabilities (MLD) have a weak understanding of fraction concepts and skills, which are foundations of algebra. Such students might benefit from computer-assisted instruction that utilizes evidence-based instructional components (cognitive strategies, feedback, virtual manipulatives). As a pilot study using a…

  7. Learning Transitive Verbs from Single-Word Verbs in the Input by Young Children Acquiring English

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ninio, Anat

    2016-01-01

    The environmental context of verbs addressed by adults to young children is claimed to be uninformative regarding the verbs' meaning, yielding the Syntactic Bootstrapping Hypothesis that, for verb learning, full sentences are needed to demonstrate the semantic arguments of verbs. However, reanalysis of Gleitman's (1990) original data regarding…

  8. "An Adjective Is a Word Hanging down from a Noun": Learning to Write and Students with Learning Disabilities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harris, Karen R.; Graham, Steve

    2013-01-01

    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…

  9. Overriding the Metrical Bias with Lexical Information: English-Learning 7.5-Month-Olds Use "Mommy" to Segment Iambic Words

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sandoval, Michelle; Gómez, Rebecca L.

    2016-01-01

    Previous research shows that English-learning 7.5-month-olds are biased to segment speech at strong syllables consistent with the predominant trochaic (strong-weak) pattern of words in their language (Jusczyk, Houston, & Newsome, 1999). The present study asked whether 7.5-month-olds can use a familiar name to override their metrical bias and…

  10. Modified Checklist for Autism in Toddlers (M-CHAT) Screening at 18 Months of Age Predicts Concurrent Understanding of Desires, Word Learning and Expressive Vocabulary

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wright, Kristyn; Poulin-Dubois, Diane

    2012-01-01

    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…

  11. The Effects of Task-Induced Involvement Load on Word Learning and Confidence Judgments Mediated by Knowledge and Regulation of Cognition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teng, Feng

    2017-01-01

    The relationships between knowledge and regulation of cognition and how they interact to mediate the effects of task-induced involvement load on word learning and confidence judgments were investigated. The participants were 77 undergraduate English majors. They were required to complete a checklist on metacognition. Subsequently, they were…

  12. "An adjective is a word hanging down from a noun": learning to write and students with learning disabilities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harris, Karen R; Graham, Steve

    2013-04-01

    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.

  13. An Investigation into the Culture-Loaded Words Learning by English Majors in a Vocational College in China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuewu, Lin; Qin, Yang

    2015-01-01

    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,…

  14. Thematic Journeys. Words that I Own

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zingher, Gary

    2005-01-01

    Children may feel a sense of ownership when they learn a new vocabulary word that genuinely excites them--a dynamic word, a poetic word, a word with a delicious sound or interesting meaning. Right away, they like to try out these words, experiment with them, incorporate them into the speaking and writing, and impress others with their mastery.…

  15. Interactive Animation Multimedia for Knowing the Words (CV+CV for Student with Learning Disabilities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    aliyah yahya

    2017-07-01

    Keywords: ADDIE Model, Interactive Multimedia, and students with learning difficulties. Kajian ini mengenai pembangunan modul pengajaran dan pembelajaran (P&P yang berbantukan kepada penggunaan komputer multimedia animasi interaktif. Tujuan kajian ini ialah untuk menjawab beberapa persoalan kajian iaitu, untuk meningkatkan minat dan motivasi pelajar pendidikan khas dan untuk memudahkan pelajar mengenal suku kata (KV+KV. Proses membangunkan perisian ini adalah berdasarkan kepada Model ADDIE yang mempunyai lima fasa iaitu “Analysis”, “Design”, “Development”, “Implementation” dan “Evaluation”. Pemilihan tajuk mengenal suku kata (KV+KV adalah untuk membantu pelajar-pelajar pendidikan khas dalam proses membaca. Proses kajian ini menggunakan Teori Pembelajaran Multimedia oleh Mayer, dan teori ini juga adalah berdasarkan kepada Teori Beban Kongnitif Sweller ( Chandler & Sweller . Kajian ini menggunakan kaedah kualitatif dan reka bentuk kajian ialah kajian kes. Sampel dalam kajian ini ialah seramai 4 orang pelajar yang dipilih secara sampel bertujuan yang telah dibentuk dalam satu kumpulan iaitu Kumpulan A. Instrumen kajian yang digunakan ialah ujian pra, ujian pos dan soal selidik. Dapatan kajian telah mendapati bahawa terdapat peningkatan pencapaian dalam ujian pra dan ujian pos yang menggunakan kaedah multimedia bagi Kumpulan A iaitu sebanyak (60 % . Pembelajaran yang menggunakan kaedah Multimedia Animasi Interaktif bukan sahaja dapat menarik minat dan memberi motivasi kepada pelajar, secara tidak langsung juga pelajar pendidikan khas ini dapat membaca.

  16. What Homophones Say about Words.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Isabelle Dautriche

    Full Text Available The number of potential meanings for a new word is astronomic. To make the word-learning problem tractable, one must restrict the hypothesis space. To do so, current word learning accounts often incorporate constraints about cognition or about the mature lexicon directly in the learning device. We are concerned with the convexity constraint, which holds that concepts (privileged sets of entities that we think of as "coherent" do not have gaps (if A and B belong to a concept, so does any entity "between" A and B. To leverage from it a linguistic constraint, learning algorithms have percolated this constraint from concepts, to word forms: some algorithms rely on the possibility that word forms are associated with convex sets of objects. Yet this does have to be the case: homophones are word forms associated with two separate words and meanings. Two sets of experiments show that when evidence suggests that a novel label is associated with a disjoint (non-convex set of objects, either a because there is a gap in conceptual space between the learning exemplars for a given word or b because of the intervention of other lexical items in that gap, adults prefer to postulate homophony, where a single word form is associated with two separate words and meanings, rather than inferring that the word could have a disjunctive, discontinuous meaning. These results about homophony must be integrated to current word learning algorithms. We conclude by arguing for a weaker specialization of word learning algorithms, which too often could miss important constraints by focusing on a restricted empirical basis (e.g., non-homophonous content words.

  17. What Homophones Say about Words.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dautriche, Isabelle; Chemla, Emmanuel

    2016-01-01

    The number of potential meanings for a new word is astronomic. To make the word-learning problem tractable, one must restrict the hypothesis space. To do so, current word learning accounts often incorporate constraints about cognition or about the mature lexicon directly in the learning device. We are concerned with the convexity constraint, which holds that concepts (privileged sets of entities that we think of as "coherent") do not have gaps (if A and B belong to a concept, so does any entity "between" A and B). To leverage from it a linguistic constraint, learning algorithms have percolated this constraint from concepts, to word forms: some algorithms rely on the possibility that word forms are associated with convex sets of objects. Yet this does have to be the case: homophones are word forms associated with two separate words and meanings. Two sets of experiments show that when evidence suggests that a novel label is associated with a disjoint (non-convex) set of objects, either a) because there is a gap in conceptual space between the learning exemplars for a given word or b) because of the intervention of other lexical items in that gap, adults prefer to postulate homophony, where a single word form is associated with two separate words and meanings, rather than inferring that the word could have a disjunctive, discontinuous meaning. These results about homophony must be integrated to current word learning algorithms. We conclude by arguing for a weaker specialization of word learning algorithms, which too often could miss important constraints by focusing on a restricted empirical basis (e.g., non-homophonous content words).

  18. Blood flow patterns underlie developmental heart defects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Midgett, Madeline; Thornburg, Kent; Rugonyi, Sandra

    2017-03-01

    Although cardiac malformations at birth are typically associated with genetic anomalies, blood flow dynamics also play a crucial role in heart formation. However, the relationship between blood flow patterns in the early embryo and later cardiovascular malformation has not been determined. We used the chicken embryo model to quantify the extent to which anomalous blood flow patterns predict cardiac defects that resemble those in humans and found that restricting either the inflow to the heart or the outflow led to reproducible abnormalities with a dose-response type relationship between blood flow stimuli and the expression of cardiac phenotypes. Constricting the outflow tract by 10-35% led predominantly to ventricular septal defects, whereas constricting by 35-60% most often led to double outlet right ventricle. Ligation of the vitelline vein caused mostly pharyngeal arch artery malformations. We show that both cardiac inflow reduction and graded outflow constriction strongly influence the development of specific and persistent abnormal cardiac structure and function. Moreover, the hemodynamic-associated cardiac defects recapitulate those caused by genetic disorders. Thus our data demonstrate the importance of investigating embryonic blood flow conditions to understand the root causes of congenital heart disease as a prerequisite to future prevention and treatment. NEW & NOTEWORTHY Congenital heart defects result from genetic anomalies, teratogen exposure, and altered blood flow during embryonic development. We show here a novel "dose-response" type relationship between the level of blood flow alteration and manifestation of specific cardiac phenotypes. We speculate that abnormal blood flow may frequently underlie congenital heart defects. Copyright © 2017 the American Physiological Society.

  19. Right word making sense of the words that confuse

    CERN Document Server

    Morrison, Elizabeth

    2012-01-01

    '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.

  20. A Word Sense Disambiguation Model for Amharic Words using Semi ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The main objective of this research was to design a WSD (word sense disambiguation) prototype model for Amharic words using semi-supervised learning method to extract training sets which minimizes the amount of the required human intervention and it can produce considerable improvement in learning accuracy.

  1. Brief learning induces a memory bias for arousing-negative words: an fMRI study in high and low trait anxious persons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eden, Annuschka S.; Dehmelt, Vera; Bischoff, Matthias; Zwitserlood, Pienie; Kugel, Harald; Keuper, Kati; Zwanzger, Peter; Dobel, Christian

    2015-01-01

    Persons suffering from anxiety disorders display facilitated processing of arousing and negative stimuli, such as negative words. This memory bias is reflected in better recall and increased amygdala activity in response to such stimuli. However, individual learning histories were not considered in most studies, a concern that we meet here. Thirty-four female persons (half with high-, half with low trait anxiety) participated in a criterion-based associative word-learning paradigm, in which neutral pseudowords were paired with aversive or neutral pictures, which should lead to a valence change for the negatively paired pseudowords. After learning, pseudowords were tested with fMRI to investigate differential brain activation of the amygdala evoked by the newly acquired valence. Explicit and implicit memory was assessed directly after training and in three follow-ups at 4-day intervals. The behavioral results demonstrate that associative word-learning leads to an explicit (but no implicit) memory bias for negatively linked pseudowords, relative to neutral ones, which confirms earlier studies. Bilateral amygdala activation underlines the behavioral effect: Higher trait anxiety is correlated with stronger amygdala activation for negatively linked pseudowords than for neutrally linked ones. Most interestingly, this effect is also present for negatively paired pseudowords that participants could not remember well. Moreover, neutrally paired pseudowords evoked higher amygdala reactivity than completely novel ones in highly anxious persons, which can be taken as evidence for generalization. These findings demonstrate that few word-learning trials generate a memory bias for emotional stimuli, indexed both behaviorally and neurophysiologically. Importantly, the typical memory bias for emotional stimuli and the generalization to neutral ones is larger in high anxious persons. PMID:26347689

  2. Brief learning induces a memory bias for arousing-negative words: An fMRI study in high and low trait anxious persons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Annuschka Salima Eden

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Persons suffering from anxiety disorders display facilitated processing of arousing and negative stimuli, such as negative words. This memory bias is reflected in better recall and increased amygdala activity in response to such stimuli. However, individual learning histories were not considered in most studies, a concern that we meet here. Thirty-four female persons (half with high-, half with low trait anxiety participated in a criterion-based associative word-learning paradigm, in which neutral pseudowords were paired with aversive or neutral pictures, which should lead to a valence change for the negatively paired pseudowords. After learning, pseudowords were tested with fMRI to investigate differential brain activation of the amygdala evoked by the newly acquired valence. Explicit and implicit memory was assessed directly after training and in three follow-ups at four-day intervals. The behavioral results demonstrate that associative word-learning leads to an explicit (but no implicit memory bias for negatively linked pseudowords, relative to neutral ones, which confirms earlier studies. Bilateral amygdala activation underlines the behavioral effect: Higher trait anxiety is correlated with stronger amygdala activation for negatively linked pseudowords than for neutrally linked ones. Most interestingly, this effect is also present for negatively paired pseudowords that participants could not remember well. Moreover, neutrally paired pseudowords evoked higher amygdala reactivity than completely novel ones in highly anxious persons, which can be taken as evidence for generalization. These findings demonstrate that few word-learning trials generate a memory bias for emotional stimuli, indexed both behaviorally and neurophysiologically. Importantly, the typical memory bias for emotional stimuli and the generalization to neutral ones is larger in high anxious persons.

  3. Peer-Assisted Learning: The Effects of Cooperative Learning and Cross-Age Peer Tutoring with Word Processing on Writing Skills of Students with Learning Disabilities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Utay, Carol; Utay, Joe

    1997-01-01

    Examined effects of combining cross-age tutoring, peer tutoring, cooperative learning, and computer-mediated writing in a peer-assisted learning package on writing skills of second through sixth graders with learning disabilities. Found that the treatment group enjoyed working with partners, asked each other for help, had friendships extending…

  4. Structural hemispheric asymmetries underlie verbal Stroop performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vallesi, Antonino; Mazzonetto, Ilaria; Ambrosini, Ettore; Babcock, Laura; Capizzi, Mariagrazia; Arbula, Sandra; Tarantino, Vincenza; Semenza, Carlo; Bertoldo, Alessandra

    2017-09-29

    Performance on tasks involving cognitive control such as the Stroop task is often associated with left lateralized brain activations. Based on this neuro-functional evidence, we tested whether leftward structural grey matter asymmetries would also predict inter-individual differences in combatting Stroop interference. To check for the specificity of the results, both a verbal Stroop task and a spatial one were administered to a total of 111 healthy young individuals, for whom T1-weighted magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) images were also acquired. Surface thickness and area estimations were calculated using FreeSurfer. Participants' hemispheres were registered to a symmetric template and Laterality Indices (LI) for the surface thickness and for the area at each vertex in each participant were computed. The correlation of these surface LI measures with the verbal and spatial Stroop effects (incongruent-congruent difference in trial performance) was assessed at each vertex by means of general linear models at the whole-brain level. We found a significant correlation between performance and surface area LI in an inferior posterior temporal cluster (overlapping with the so-called visual word form area, VWFA), with a more left-lateralized area in this region associated with a smaller Stroop effect only in the verbal task. These results point to an involvement of the VWFA for higher-level processes based on word reading, including the suppression of this process when required by the task, and could be interpreted in the context of cross-hemispheric rivalry. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Finding meaning in a noisy world: exploring the effects of referential ambiguity and competition on 2·5-year-olds' cross-situational word learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bunce, John P; Scott, Rose M

    2017-05-01

    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.

  6. The effects of using flashcards with reading racetrack to teach letter sounds, sight words, and math facts to elementary students with learning disabilities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rachel Erbey

    2011-07-01

    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.

  7. WordPress Bible

    CERN Document Server

    Brazell, Aaron

    2011-01-01

    Get the latest word on the biggest self-hosted blogging tool on the marketWithin a week of the announcement of WordPress 3.0, it had been downloaded over a million times. Now you can get on the bandwagon of this popular open-source blogging tool with WordPress Bible, 2nd Edition. Whether you're a casual blogger or programming pro, this comprehensive guide covers the latest version of WordPress, from the basics through advanced application development. If you want to thoroughly learn WordPress, this is the book you need to succeed.Explores the principles of blogging, marketing, and social media

  8. Pengembangan Multimedia Tutorial Interaktif Microsoft Office Word

    OpenAIRE

    Istika, Dini; Ngadimun, Ngadimun; Suyanto, Eko

    2014-01-01

    This study aimed to: 1) produce interactive multimedia products Microsoft Office Word that fulfilled the criteria of a good instructional media, including instructional criteria, material criteria, and presentation criteria; 2) find out the effectiveness of an interactive tutorials of Microsoft Word  on learning the Microsoft Word; 3) determine the efficiency of an interactive tutorials of Microsoft Word on learning the Microsoft Word. The research conducted in SMP Negeri 4 Gedongtataan, SMP...

  9. Clusters of word properties as predictors of elementary school children's performance on two word tasks

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tellings, A.E.J.M.; Coppens, K.M.; Gelissen, J.P.T.M.; Schreuder, R.

    2013-01-01

    Often, the classification of words does not go beyond "difficult" (i.e., infrequent, late-learned, nonimageable, etc.) or "easy" (i.e., frequent, early-learned, imageable, etc.) words. In the present study, we used a latent cluster analysis to divide 703 Dutch words with scores for eight word

  10. Reader, Word, and Character Attributes Contributing to Chinese Children's Concept of Word

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Jing; Lin, Tzu-Jung; Ku, Yu-Min; Zhang, Jie; O'Connell, Ann

    2018-01-01

    Concept of word--the awareness of how words differ from nonwords or other linguistic properties--is important to learning to read Chinese because words in Chinese texts are not separated by space, and most characters can be productively compounded with other characters to form new words. The current study examined the effects of reader, word, and…

  11. Meaningful Memory in Acute Anorexia Nervosa Patients-Comparing Recall, Learning, and Recognition of Semantically Related and Semantically Unrelated Word Stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Terhoeven, Valentin; Kallen, Ursula; Ingenerf, Katrin; Aschenbrenner, Steffen; Weisbrod, Matthias; Herzog, Wolfgang; Brockmeyer, Timo; Friederich, Hans-Christoph; Nikendei, Christoph

    2017-03-01

    It is unclear whether observed memory impairment in anorexia nervosa (AN) depends on the semantic structure (categorized words) of material to be encoded. We aimed to investigate the processing of semantically related information in AN. Memory performance was assessed in a recall, learning, and recognition test in 27 adult women with AN (19 restricting, 8 binge-eating/purging subtype; average disease duration: 9.32 years) and 30 healthy controls using an extended version of the Rey Auditory Verbal Learning Test, applying semantically related and unrelated word stimuli. Short-term memory (immediate recall, learning), regardless of semantics of the words, was significantly worse in AN patients, whereas long-term memory (delayed recall, recognition) did not differ between AN patients and controls. Semantics of stimuli do not have a better effect on memory recall in AN compared to CO. Impaired short-term versus long-term memory is discussed in relation to dysfunctional working memory in AN. Copyright © 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd and Eating Disorders Association. Copyright © 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd and Eating Disorders Association.

  12. How my now six-year-old daughter learned how to write her name, recognize numbers, read some words and draw: A narrative

    OpenAIRE

    Dr. Carlo Ricci

    2010-01-01

    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 mean...

  13. Lost for emotion words: What motor and limbic brain activity reveals about autism and semantic theory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moseley, Rachel L.; Shtyrov, Yury; Mohr, Bettina; Lombardo, Michael V.; Baron-Cohen, Simon; Pulvermüller, Friedemann

    2015-01-01

    Autism spectrum conditions (ASC) are characterised by deficits in understanding and expressing emotions and are frequently accompanied by alexithymia, a difficulty in understanding and expressing emotion words. Words are differentially represented in the brain according to their semantic category and these difficulties in ASC predict reduced activation to emotion-related words in limbic structures crucial for affective processing. Semantic theories view ‘emotion actions’ as critical for learning the semantic relationship between a word and the emotion it describes, such that emotion words typically activate the cortical motor systems involved in expressing emotion actions such as facial expressions. As ASC are also characterised by motor deficits and atypical brain structure and function in these regions, motor structures would also be expected to show reduced activation during emotion-semantic processing. Here we used event-related fMRI to compare passive processing of emotion words in comparison to abstract verbs and animal names in typically-developing controls and individuals with ASC. Relatively reduced brain activation in ASC for emotion words, but not matched control words, was found in motor areas and cingulate cortex specifically. The degree of activation evoked by emotion words in the motor system was also associated with the extent of autistic traits as revealed by the Autism Spectrum Quotient. We suggest that hypoactivation of motor and limbic regions for emotion word processing may underlie difficulties in processing emotional language in ASC. The role that sensorimotor systems and their connections might play in the affective and social-communication difficulties in ASC is discussed. PMID:25278250

  14. Positive and Negative Emotions Underlie Motivation for L2 Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacIntyre, Peter D.; Vincze, Laszlo

    2017-01-01

    The role of basic emotions in SLA has been underestimated in both research and pedagogy. The present article examines 10 positive emotions ("joy," "gratitude," "serenity," "interest," "hope," "pride," "amusement," "inspiration," "awe," and "love")…

  15. Neurocognitive mechanisms of learning to read: print tuning in beginning readers related to word-reading fluency and semantics but not phonology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eberhard-Moscicka, Aleksandra K; Jost, Lea B; Raith, Margit; Maurer, Urs

    2015-01-01

    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. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  16. Learning to Pronounce First Words in Three Languages: An Investigation of Caregiver and Infant Behavior Using a Computational Model of an Infant

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howard, Ian S.; Messum, Piers

    2014-01-01

    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. PMID

  17. Learning to pronounce first words in three languages: an investigation of caregiver and infant behavior using a computational model of an infant.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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

  18. Best not to bet on the horserace: A comment on Forrin and MacLeod (2017) and a relevant stimulus-response compatibility view of colour-word contingency learning asymmetries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmidt, James R

    2018-02-01

    One powerfully robust method for the study of human contingency learning is the colour-word contingency learning paradigm. In this task, participants respond to the print colour of neutral words, each of which is presented most often in one colour. The contingencies between words and colours are learned, as indicated by faster and more accurate responses when words are presented in their expected colour relative to an unexpected colour. In a recent report, Forrin and MacLeod (2017b, Memory & Cognition) asked to what extent this performance (i.e., response time) measure of learning might depend on the relative speed of processing of the word and the colour. With keypress responses, learning effects were comparable when responding to the word and to the colour (contrary to predictions). However, an asymmetry appeared in a second experiment with vocal responses, with a contingency effect only present for colour identification. In a third experiment, the colour was preexposed, and contingency effects were again roughly symmetrical. In their report, they suggested that a simple speed-of-processing (or "horserace") model might explain when contingency effects are observed in colour and word identification. In the present report, an alternative view is presented. In particular, it is argued that the results are best explained by appealing to the notion of relevant stimulus-response compatibility, which also resolves discrepancies between horserace model predictions and participant results. The article presents simulations with the Parallel Episodic Processing model to demonstrate this case.

  19. Parents' Translations of Child Gesture Facilitate Word Learning in Children with Autism, Down Syndrome and Typical Development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dimitrova, Nevena; Özçalışkan, Şeyda; Adamson, Lauren B

    2016-01-01

    Typically-developing (TD) children frequently refer to objects uniquely in gesture. Parents translate these gestures into words, facilitating children's acquisition of these words (Goldin-Meadow et al. in Dev Sci 10(6):778-785, 2007). We ask whether this pattern holds for children with autism (AU) and with Down syndrome (DS) who show delayed vocabulary development. We observed 23 children with AU, 23 with DS, and 23 TD children with their parents over a year. Children used gestures to indicate objects before labeling them and parents translated their gestures into words. Importantly, children benefited from this input, acquiring more words for the translated gestures than the not translated ones. Results highlight the role contingent parental input to child gesture plays in language development of children with developmental disorders.

  20. Monolingual and Bilingual Infants’ Ability to Use Non-native Tone for Word Learning Deteriorates by the Second Year After Birth

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liquan Liu

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Previous studies reported a non-native word learning advantage for bilingual infants at around 18 months. We investigated developmental changes in infant interpretation of sounds that aid in object mapping. Dutch monolingual and bilingual (exposed to Dutch and a second non-tone-language infants’ word learning ability was examined on two novel label–object pairings using syllables differing in Mandarin tones as labels (flat vs. falling. Infants aged 14–15 months, regardless of language backgrounds, were sensitive to violations in the label–objects pairings when lexical tones were switched compared to when they were the same as habituated. Conversely at 17–18 months, neither monolingual nor bilingual infants demonstrated learning. Linking with existing literature, infants’ ability to associate non-native tones with meanings may be related to tonal acoustic properties and/or perceptual assimilation to native prosodic categories. These findings provide new insights into the relation between infant tone perception, learning, and interpretative narrowing from a developmental perspective.

  1. Fast mapping semantic features: performance of adults with normal language, history of disorders of spoken and written language, and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder on a word-learning task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alt, Mary; Gutmann, Michelle L

    2009-01-01

    This study was designed to test the word learning abilities of adults with typical language abilities, those with a history of disorders of spoken or written language (hDSWL), and hDSWL plus attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (+ADHD). Sixty-eight adults were required to associate a novel object with a novel label, and then recognize semantic features of the object and phonological features of the label. Participants were tested for overt ability (accuracy) and covert processing (reaction time). The +ADHD group was less accurate at mapping semantic features and slower to respond to lexical labels than both other groups. Different factors correlated with word learning performance for each group. Adults with language and attention deficits are more impaired at word learning than adults with language deficits only. Despite behavioral profiles like typical peers, adults with hDSWL may use different processing strategies than their peers. Readers will be able to: (1) recognize the influence of a dual disability (hDSWL and ADHD) on word learning outcomes; (2) identify factors that may contribute to word learning in adults in terms of (a) the nature of the words to be learned and (b) the language processing of the learner.

  2. How my now six-year-old daughter learned how to write her name, recognize numbers, read some words and draw: A narrative

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dr. Carlo RICCI

    2010-07-01

    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 peoples 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.

  3. Word classes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rijkhoff, Jan

    2007-01-01

    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...... in grammatical descriptions of some 50 languages, which together constitute a representative sample of the world’s languages (Hengeveld et al. 2004: 529). It appears that there are both quantitative and qualitative differences between word class systems of individual languages. Whereas some languages employ...... a parts-of-speech system that includes the categories Verb, Noun, Adjective and Adverb, other languages may use only a subset of these four lexical categories. Furthermore, quite a few languages have a major word class whose members cannot be classified in terms of the categories Verb – Noun – Adjective...

  4. Children's First Word Combinations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Braine, Martin D. S.

    1976-01-01

    This monograph presents a descriptive analysis of the syntactic patterns in 16 corpora of word combinations from 11 infants learning either English (six children), Samoan, Finnish, Hebrew, or Swedish. The mean utterance lengths range up to about 1.7 morpehmes. There are both reanalyses of corpora in the literature and new corpora. The data…

  5. WordPress for dummies

    CERN Document Server

    Sabin-Wilson, Lisa

    2014-01-01

    The bestselling WordPress guide, fully updated to cover the 2013 enhancements WordPress has millions of users, and this popular guide has sold more than 105,000 copies in its previous editions. With the newest releases of WordPress, author and WordPress expert Lisa Sabin-Wilson has completely updated the book to help you use and understand all the latest features. You'll learn about both the hosted WordPress.com version and the more flexible WordPress.org, which requires third-party hosting. Whether you're switching to WordPress from another blogging platform or just beginning to blog, you'll

  6. Bilingual children weigh speaker's referential cues and word-learning heuristics differently in different language contexts when interpreting a speaker's intent.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hung, Wan-Yu; Patrycia, Ferninda; Yow, W Q

    2015-01-01

    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.

  7. Bilingual children weigh speaker’s referential cues and word-learning heuristics differently in different language contexts when interpreting a speaker’s intent

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wan-Yu eHung

    2015-06-01

    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

  8. The Effects of Comprehensive Vocabulary Instruction on Title I Students' Metacognitive Word-Learning Skills and Reading Comprehension

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lubliner, Shira; Smetana, Linda

    2005-01-01

    This study examined the effects of a multifaceted, metacognitive vocabulary intervention on the reading comprehension and vocabulary achievement of fifth-grade children in one of California's lowest performing Title I schools. Instruction was comprehensive, designed to facilitate encoding of student-selected words, mastery of clarifying…

  9. Are Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder Initially Attuned to Object Function Rather than Shape for Word Learning?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Field, Charlotte; Allen, Melissa L.; Lewis, Charlie

    2016-01-01

    We investigate the function bias--generalising words to objects with the same function--in typically developing (TD) children, children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and children with other developmental disorders. Across four trials, a novel object was named and its function was described and demonstrated. Children then selected the other…

  10. Poor Comprehenders in English-Only and English Language Learners: Influence of Morphological Analysis during Incidental Word Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Jie; Shulley, Leah

    2017-01-01

    This study investigated whether weakness in using morphological analysis to infer new word meanings during reading is a source of poor text comprehension and the relative importance of psycholinguistic and cognitive factors as contributors of poor text comprehension in English-only and English language learners. Thirty-seven poor comprehenders and…

  11. The enigma of number: why children find the meanings of even small number words hard to learn and how we can help them do better.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael Ramscar

    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

  12. The enigma of number: why children find the meanings of even small number words hard to learn and how we can help them do better.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ramscar, Michael; Dye, Melody; Popick, Hanna Muenke; O'Donnell-McCarthy, Fiona

    2011-01-01

    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 numerical ability

  13. Sonority and early words

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kjærbæk, Laila; Boeg Thomsen, Ditte; Lambertsen, Claus

    2015-01-01

    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...

  14. Periodic words connected with the Fibonacci words

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. M. Barabash

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available In this paper we introduce two families of periodic words (FLP-words of type 1 and FLP-words of type 2 that are connected with the Fibonacci words and investigated their properties.

  15. Head First WordPress

    CERN Document Server

    Siarto, Jeff

    2010-01-01

    Whether you're promoting your business or writing about your travel adventures, Head First WordPress will teach you not only how to make your blog look unique and attention-grabbing, but also how to dig into the more complex features of WordPress 3.0 to make your website work well, too. You'll learn how to move beyond the standard WordPress look and feel by customizing your blog with your own URL, templates, plugin functionality, and more. As you learn, you'll be working with real WordPress files: The book's website provides pre-fab WordPress themes to download and work with as you follow al

  16. Developing and Applying a Foreign Language Vocabulary Learning and Practicing Game: The Effect of VocaWord

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uzun, Levent; Çetinavci, Ugur Recep; Korkmaz, Sedat; Salihoglu, Umut Muharrem

    2013-01-01

    The present study reports on the findings related to the effect of playing a vocabulary learning and practicing game in elementary English classes at university level, and the attitudes and beliefs of the subjects about playing games with the purpose of learning the foreign language. The subjects were 70 first year university students from two…

  17. Exploring Learners' Perceptions of the Use of Digital Letter Games for Language Learning: The Case of Magic Word

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loiseau, Mathieu; Cervini, Cristiana; Ceccherelli, Andrea; Masperi, Monica; Salomoni, Paola; Roccetti, Marco; Valva, Antonella; Bianco, Francesca

    2016-01-01

    In this paper, we present two versions of a learning game developed respectively at the Grenoble Alpes and Bologna University. This research focuses on a digital game aimed at favouring the learners' "playful attitude" and harnessing it towards "accuracy" aspects of language learning (lexicon and morphology, here). The game,…

  18. Neurophysiological correlates of word recognition in dyslexia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schulte-Körne, G; Deimel, W; Bartling, J; Remschmidt, H

    2004-07-01

    The neurobiological basis of learning word spellings and recognition of recently learned words was assessed in a learning experiment in 9 dyslexics and 9 controls male adolescents. In a recognition paradigm previously learned pseudowords and graphic symbols were presented 50 times each interspersed pseudo-randomly between 3 unlearned items which were repeated 50 times and 150 filler pseudowords. The electrophysiological correlate of recognition of learned pseudowords and graphic symbols was a positivity around 600 ms. For pseudowords the amplitude of this ERP component was significantly attenuated in the dyslexic group, no differences between the groups were found for recognition of graphic material. These data suggest that dyslexic children are able to learn the spelling of simple words, however, the neurophysiological correlate of recognition of these learned words is significantly attenuated. This result strengthens the view that dyslexic children are not generally impaired in recognition memory but specific for linguistic material like words.

  19. Atypical performance patterns on Delis-Kaplan Executive Functioning System Color-Word Interference Test: Cognitive switching and learning ability in older adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berg, Jody-Lynn; Swan, Natasha M; Banks, Sarah J; Miller, Justin B

    2016-09-01

    Cognitive set shifting requires flexible application of lower level processes. The Delis-Kaplan Executive Functioning System (DKEFS) Color-Word Interference Test (CWIT) is commonly used to clinically assess cognitive set shifting. An atypical pattern of performance has been observed on the CWIT; a subset of individuals perform faster, with equal or fewer errors, on the more difficult inhibition/switching than the inhibition trial. This study seeks to explore the cognitive underpinnings of this atypical pattern. It is hypothesized that atypical patterns on CWIT will be associated with better performance on underlying cognitive measures of attention, working memory, and learning when compared to typical CWIT patterns. Records from 239 clinical referrals (age: M = 68.09 years, SD = 10.62; education: M = 14.87 years, SD = 2.73) seen for a neuropsychological evaluation as part of diagnostic work up in an outpatient dementia and movement disorders clinic were sampled. The standard battery of tests included measures of attention, learning, fluency, executive functioning, and working memory. Analyses of variance (ANOVAs) were conducted to compare the cognitive performance of those with typical versus atypical CWIT patterns. An atypical pattern of performance was confirmed in 23% of our sample. Analyses revealed a significant group difference in acquisition of information on both nonverbal (Brief Visuospatial Memory Test-Revised, BVMT-R total recall), F(1, 213) = 16.61, p < .001, and verbal (Hopkins Verbal Learning Test-Revised, HVLT-R total recall) learning tasks, F(1, 181) = 6.43, p < .01, and semantic fluency (Animal Naming), F(1, 232) = 7.57, p = .006, with the atypical group performing better on each task. Effect sizes were larger for nonverbal (Cohen's d = 0.66) than verbal learning (Cohen's d = 0.47) and semantic fluency (Cohen's d = 0.43). Individuals demonstrating an atypical pattern of performance on the CWIT inhibition/switching trial also demonstrated relative

  20. Clusters of word properties as predictors of elementary school children’s performance on two word tasks

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tellings, A.E.J.M.; Coppens, K.; Gelissen, J.P.T.M.; Schreuder, R.

    2013-01-01

    Often, the classification of words does not go beyond “difficult” (i.e., infrequent, late-learned, nonimageable, etc.) or “easy” (i.e., frequent, early-learned, imageable, etc.) words. In the present study, we used a latent cluster analysis to divide 703 Dutch words with scores for eight word