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Category: Journal of Memory and Language

Does syntax bias serial order reconstruction of verbal short-term memory?

Published in: Journal of Memory and Language, Volume 100, June 2018, 98-122 Abstract “Existing models of short-term sequence memory can account for effects of long-term knowledge on the recall of individual items, but have rarely addressed the effects of long-term sequential constraints on recall. We examine syntactic constraints on the ordering of words in verbal short-term memory in four experiments. People were found to have better memory for sequences that more strongly conform to English syntax, and that errors in recall tended to make output sequences more syntactic (i.e., a syntactic bias). Model simulations suggest that the syntactic biasing in verbal short-term recall… Read More

Evidence for the use of three-way binding structures in associative and source recognition

Published in: Journal of Memory and Language, Volume 100, June 2018, 89-97 Abstract “Avoiding interference among similar memory traces may be helped by forming complex memory structures that include multiple components of the event. In a laboratory setting, these structures have been studied through list learning paradigms, where the pairs in one list are swapped in another list (i.e., ABABr condition), and one has to form a memory structure that includes items and context together (i.e., three-way binding). However, despite the long history of the theoretical concept, and its importance, three-way bindings have only been examined in recall paradigms. Moreover, not… Read More

The phonetic specificity of contrastive hyperarticulation in natural speech

Published in: Journal of Memory and Language, Volume 100, June 2018, 61-88 Abstract “Evidence suggests that speakers hyperarticulate phonetic cues to word identity in a way that increases phonetic distance to similar competitors. However, the degree and type of phonetic similarity between competitors which induces hyperarticulation remains unclear. Here, we compared neighborhood density (as a representative of a phonetically-general type of similarity) to the existence of a phonetic cue-specific lexical minimal pair in terms of their ability to predict hyperarticulation of two different cue-types in a corpus of natural English speech. For all phonetic cues that we investigated – word-initial voiceless… Read More

Infants’ recognition of foreign-accented words: Flexible yet precise signal-to-word mapping strategies

Published in: Journal of Memory and Language, Volume 100, June 2018, 51-60 Abstract “To develop adult-like communication skills, children need to learn to converse not only with individuals from their local community, but also with second-language learners who might have foreign accents. Here, we ask when infants can recognize foreign-accented word forms, and what the cognitive underpinnings are that enable children to map such surface forms onto established lexical representations. In line with reports using regional accents, Canadian-English learners recognize words forms in a foreign French accent by 18 months of age, indicating that the developmental trajectory of coping with foreign accents… Read More

Is speech recognition automatic? Lexical competition, but not initial lexical access, requires cognitive resources

Published in: Journal of Memory and Language, Volume 100, June 2018, 32-50 Abstract “Current models of spoken word recognition suggest that multiple lexical candidates are activated in parallel upon hearing an utterance, with these lexical hypotheses competing with each other for recognition. The current project investigated the effect of cognitive load on initial lexical access and later lexical competition. In a set of priming studies, the lexicality of the primes (i.e., non-word vs. word) was manipulated to dissociate these two sub-processes. We tested performance on a semantic association task under conditions with no additional load, or with cognitive load that used… Read More

Free recall dynamics in value-directed remembering

Published in: Journal of Memory and Language, Volume 100, June 2018, 18-31 Abstract “An emerging literature on value-directed remembering has shown that people are able to encode and remember information that is more important. Researchers operationalize importance by differentially assigning value to the memoranda that participants are asked to encode and remember. In the present investigation, a slightly altered value-directed-remembering paradigm was used to investigate how value modifies the dynamics of memory organization and search in free recall. In Experiment 1, free recall dynamics were compared between a control and a value condition. In Experiment 2, we manipulated the order of… Read More

Beyond cloze probability: Parafoveal processing of semantic and syntactic information during reading

Published in: Journal of Memory and Language, Volume 100, June 2018, 1-17 Abstract “Theories of eye movement control in reading assume that early oculomotordecisions are determined by a word’s frequency and cloze probability. This assumption is challenged by evidence that readers are sensitive to the contextual plausibility of an upcoming word: First-pass fixation probability and duration are reduced when the parafoveal preview is a plausible, but unpredictable, word relative to an implausible word. The present study sought to establish whether the source of this effect is sensitivity to violations of syntactic acceptability. In two experiments, the gaze-contingent boundary paradigm was used to compare contextually… Read More