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Please check, just in case…. APA Tip of the Day: Past Tense When you describe what an author wrote, use past tense: Sleeter (1986) argued that… When defining.

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Presentation on theme: "Please check, just in case…. APA Tip of the Day: Past Tense When you describe what an author wrote, use past tense: Sleeter (1986) argued that… When defining."— Presentation transcript:

1 Please check, just in case…

2 APA Tip of the Day: Past Tense When you describe what an author wrote, use past tense: Sleeter (1986) argued that… When defining disability, Jones (1996) stated that “…” Rosenblum and Travis (2006) defined

3 However! Do not make all of the verbs in the sentence in past tense: Sleeter (1986) argued that learning disabilities are socially constructed. NOT Sleeter (1986) argued that learning disabilities were socially constructed. (Unless past tense is meaningful in that context.)

4 Announcements 1.The first major assignment is not due until March 4 th. However, you are already working on it via your readings reviews – make sure that you carefully review the Key Concept paper assignment description ASAP, so that you can gear your readings reviews toward completion of that assignment. 2.Make an appointment to go over upcoming assignments in advance.

5 Quick questions or quandaries?

6 Today’s Topic: Introducing theories of language development

7 Important dates in the history of language development theory: 1957: Skinner publishes “Verbal behavior” – a behaviorist explanation for language development 1959: Chomsky publishes a negative review of “Verbal behavior” in Language. 1965: Chomsky published “Aspects of the theory of syntax” (a nativist explanation of language development).

8 NOTE! As of yet, there is no one theory of language development which: o Is universally accepted as the explanation for first language development, or o Explains all aspects of language development: syntax, morphology, semantics, phonology, and pragmatics.

9 Famous Behavior Theorists: Pavlov Watson Skinner Hewett Lovaas

10 Classical Conditioning

11 What is learning? According to behaviorists, “learning occurs as a result of the consequences of behavior.” Alberto & Troutman, 2003, p. 18

12 What is learning? According to behaviorists, “learning occurs as a result of the consequences of behavior.” Alberto & Troutman, 2003, p. 18

13 The A, B, C’s of behaviorism: Antecendent Behavior Consequence

14 Operant Conditioning: positive reinforcement, negative reinforcement, and punishment I will bring my homework to school every day. I will bring my homework to school every...

15 Two other mechanisms for learning: Shaping: Reinforcement of “subsequent approximations” of the target behavior. Modeling: Learning by watching and imitating.

16 Quick Write What understandings about theories of language development did you take away from the de Valenzuela and Niccolai (2004) reading?

17 Contrary evidence for a behaviorist explanation of language development: “He brunged his lunch”

18 Other contrary evidence Young infants learn are born with the ability to discriminate between a variety of sounds that are not in their own language. However, by 6-9 months, they lose the ability to differentiate between similar sounds that are not distinct phonemes in their language (e.g. /l/ and /r/ for Japanese speakers). But children at that age are not yet using words. How do they learn this without behavioral reinforcement?

19 Hypothesis Testing Formulaic speech (i.e. went) Rule formation (i.e. –ed) Over-extension (i.e. goed) Exceptional to the rule (i.e. went)

20 Example of grammatical over- extension and resistance to correction: Child:he falled down Mom:no Timmy, he fell down Child:yeah, he falled down

21 Brown’s First 14 Morphemes: present progressive -ing (without auxiliary) ‘in’ ‘on’ regular plural –s irregular past possessive –s uncontractible copula (to be as main verb) articles regular past -ed regular 3 rd person – s irregular 3 rd person uncontractible auxiliary contractible copula contractible auxiliary

22 Criticisms of a behavioral theory of language development:  Overly simplistic explanation.  Overlooks learner contributions  Untestable.  Ignores un-reinforceable development (e.g. phonological knowledge) and unreinforced productions – does not explain the acquisition of underlying rules.

23 Note: These are criticisms of behaviorism as a theory of language development. It is not a criticism of applied behavior analysis as a method of teaching discrete behaviors.

24 Misconception Alert! observation & imitation ≠ operant conditioning

25 Imitation ≠ Behaviorism “It seems quite beyond question that children acquire a good deal of their verbal and nonverbal behavior by casual observation and imitation of adults and other children” [emphasis added] (Chomsky, 1959, p. 42).

26

27 UG and LAD Important components of nativist theories of language acquisition are: o Language acquisition device o Universal grammar

28 The Nativist Explanation: “Children are born with a specific innate ability to discover for themselves the underlying rules of a language system on the basis of the samples of a natural language they are exposed to.” (Lightbown & Spada, 2006, p. 15)

29 Nature AND Nurture According to Chomsky (1959), the characteristics of complex organisms “are in general a complicated product of inborn structure, the genetically determined course of maturation, and past experience (p. 27).

30 Inborn structure????

31 “It appears to be a fundamental fact about human beings that our behavior and behavioral capacities often surpass the limitations of our individual reinforcement histories. Our history of reinforcement often is too impoverished to determine uniquely what we do or how we do it. Much learning, therefore, seems to require pre-existing or innate representational structures or principled constraints within which learning occurs.” Graham, 2005,

32 Chomskyan Nativism “The child’s language ‘grows in the mind’ as the visual system develops the capacity for binocular vision, or as the child undergoes puberty at a certain stage of maturation. Language acquisition is something that happens to a child placed in a certain environment, not something the child does.” (Chomsky, as cited in Cowie, 1999, p. 153)

33 Universal Grammar Definition “Innate linguistic knowledge which, it is hypothesized, consists of a set of principles common to all languages. This term is associated with Chomsky’s theory of language acquisition.” (Lightbown & Spada, 2006, p. 205)

34 Small Group Activity: Summarize the development of early communication and language development presented in Cattell using big paper. 20 minutes!

35 Main Points: 1.Behaviorism is generally not accepted as an adequate theoretical explanation for the development of complex cognitive systems, such as language. 2.The nativist explanation of language development, as acquired not learned, is diametrically opposed to behavioral theories.

36 3.It is possible that different theoretical explanations might account for the development of different aspects of language and/or communication. Main Points, cont.:

37 Looking ahead… Social and interactionist perspectives on language development

38 Please take a minute for the minute paper. And don’t forget to turn your phone back on.


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