Children's comprehension of sentences with focus particles


Paterson, K.B, Liversedge, S.P, Rowland, C and Filik, R (2003) Children's comprehension of sentences with focus particles. Cognition, 89, (3), 263-294. (doi:10.1016/S0010-0277(03)00126-4).

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Description/Abstract

We report three studies investigating children's and adults' comprehension of sentences containing the focus particle only. In Experiments 1 and 2, four groups of participants (6–7 years, 8–10 years, 11–12 years and adult) compared sentences with only in different syntactic positions against pictures that matched or mismatched events described by the sentence. Contrary to previous findings (Crain, S., Ni, W., & Conway, L. (1994). Learning, parsing and modularity. In C. Clifton, L. Frazier, & K. Rayner (Eds.), Perspectives on sentence processing. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum; Philip, W., & Lynch, E. (1999). Felicity, relevance, and acquisition of the grammar of every and only. In S. C. Howell, S. A. Fish, & T. Keith-Lucas (Eds.), Proceedings of the 24th annual Boston University conference on language development. Somerville, MA: Cascadilla Press) we found that young children predominantly made errors by failing to process contrast information rather than errors in which they failed to use syntactic information to restrict the scope of the particle. Experiment 3 replicated these findings with pre-schoolers.

Item Type: Article
ISSNs: 0010-0277 (print)
Related URLs:
Subjects: Q Science > Q Science (General)
H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Divisions: University Structure - Pre August 2011 > School of Psychology > Division of Cognition
ePrint ID: 44643
Date Deposited: 07 Mar 2007
Last Modified: 27 Mar 2014 18:29
Contact Email Address: S.P.Liversedge@soton.ac.uk
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/44643

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