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1 Recent Advances in the study of Language Development Brian MacWhinney- CMU.

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Presentation on theme: "1 Recent Advances in the study of Language Development Brian MacWhinney- CMU."— Presentation transcript:

1 1 Recent Advances in the study of Language Development Brian MacWhinney- CMU

2 2 Topics Bases of SLI Bases of SLI Assessment Methods Assessment Methods Childhood bilingualism Childhood bilingualism Emergentism and Brain Plasticity Emergentism and Brain Plasticity Multimedia Analysis Multimedia Analysis

3 3 A unitary account of SLI? Old unitary accounts Old unitary accounts  Auditory STM deficit (Tallal)  Weak syllable loss (Leonard)  Processing capacity (Kail, Kirschner, Gathercole) New unitary accounts New unitary accounts  RDDR (van der Lely, Clahsen)  Weak lexical storage (Chiat, Gupta)  Item-based models of sentence production

4 4 New models of the lexicon Sound -> meaning Sound -> meaning  Turtle  Phonological loop Constructions Constructions  X gives Y to Z  What is X doing Z ? Making sentences: Making sentences:  My __, X likes Y,  My dog likes bones.

5 5 Applications to Chinese No Problems in No Problems in  Wh-movement  Agreement morphology  Case marking Similar problems Similar problems  Complementation  Reflexives Special Problems in.. Special Problems in..  Classifiers  Aspect markers  Lexicon  Writing

6 6 What is wrong with the lexicon? Period 1: phonological encoding Period 1: phonological encoding Period 2: argument structure Period 2: argument structure Period 3: sentence compilation Period 3: sentence compilation Note: this view tends to merge grammar and the lexicon (Bates and Goodman, 1999)

7 7 Assessment Methods CDI Communicative Development Inventory CDI Communicative Development Inventory  Mandarin done, Cantonese in progress  Issues in maternal report Computerized reaction-time methods Computerized reaction-time methods  Battery of 9 tasks. Reaction time and STM Transcript Methods Transcript Methods  Profiles  Multimedia  Web

8 8 Childhood Bilingualism Early auditory development Early auditory development  Separation by prosodic types (Chinese, English)  Later separation within related languages Babbling differentiation Babbling differentiation Grammatical, lexical separation at age 2 Grammatical, lexical separation at age 2 Parental responses to switching Parental responses to switching Trilingualism Trilingualism

9 9 Research programs Yip and Matthews in Hong Kong Yip and Matthews in Hong Kong LIDES Project in Europe LIDES Project in Europe German work on later interference, transfer German work on later interference, transfer Montreal work on pragmatic support Montreal work on pragmatic support

10 10 Emergentism and Plasticity Nativism vs. Empiricism Nativism vs. Empiricism Emergentism vs. Stipulationism Emergentism vs. Stipulationism

11 11 Stipulation by Rule

12 12 Genetic stipulation: Modules from birth?

13 13 Genetic stipulation: A gene for the past tense?

14 14 Neurons don’t send Morse code

15 15 Neural Networks

16 16 Hard-wired?Hard-wired?

17 17 Emergent structure in Honeycombs

18 18 Structure in Ocular Dominance Columns Emergence of Oriented On-Off Neurons by Coarse Coding

19 19 The Emergence of Language Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, 1999 Elman, J. et al (1996) Rethinking Innateness MIT Press

20 20 JUS Left parietal-frontal stroke

21 21 RYB Left frontal stroke

22 22 KAM Left temporal stroke

23 23 Sagittal section of one subject’s injured hemisphere

24 24 Z-score distributions Count Control Group Count Experimental Group

25 25 16 regions of interest

26 26 Sentence Interpretation Easy (Conjoined)-- The cat chased the rabbit and enjoyed the hunt in the yard Medium (SS) -- The principal that tripped the janitor used the phone to call home Difficult (SO) -- The pig that the dog scared ate the trash in the street

27 27

28 28 Sentence Processing -- Superior Temporal Gyrus Adult, Child, SJ, BR, MK, MM, GM, DK

29 29 Conclusions Prognosis is mostly optimistic, but status of late acquisitions (reading, math) is unclear Prognosis is mostly optimistic, but status of late acquisitions (reading, math) is unclear Careful rt studies reveal subtle differences Careful rt studies reveal subtle differences Plasticity rather than modularity -- reorganization contralaterally and locally Plasticity rather than modularity -- reorganization contralaterally and locally However, children with early strokes have some site-specific limitations in behavioral measures However, children with early strokes have some site-specific limitations in behavioral measures

30 30 Computational Analysis SALT SALT  new versions, better interface  fuller profile (only Spanish and English) CLAN CLAN  New measures VOCD, DSS, MOR  Profile facility coming soon  Link to Praat  SALT-like fast analysis

31 31 Multimedia Analysis Use of F5 in CLAN for transcription Use of F5 in CLAN for transcription Video examples linked to text Video examples linked to text PATSy (Edinburgh) case studies on the web PATSy (Edinburgh) case studies on the web CHILDES data on SLI children CHILDES data on SLI children Norms for inclusion in SALT and CHILDES Norms for inclusion in SALT and CHILDES

32 32 Research Methods Systematic Description? Manipulating Environment? Causation Determinable? Hypothesis Tested? Introspection TalkBank/ CHILDES Correlational Model Fitting PsyScope E-Prime No Yes No Yes NoYes NoYes

33 33 Introspection Mental models Mental models Grammaticality Judgments Grammaticality Judgments Native speaker intuitions Native speaker intuitions Reflection- Hermeneutics Reflection- Hermeneutics Functional Grammar and the Perspective Hypothesis Functional Grammar and the Perspective Hypothesis


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