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Van Dyke J.A.,Haskins Laboratories | McElree B.,New York University
Journal of Memory and Language | Year: 2011

The role of interference as a primary determinant of forgetting in memory has long been accepted, however its role as a contributor to poor comprehension is just beginning to be understood. The current paper reports two studies, in which speed-accuracy tradeoff and eye-tracking methodologies were used with the same materials to provide converging evidence for the role of syntactic and semantic cues as mediators of both proactive (PI) and retroactive interference (RI) during comprehension. Consistent with previous work (e.g., Van Dyke & Lewis, 2003), we found that syntactic constraints at the retrieval site are among the cues that drive retrieval in comprehension, and that these constraints effectively limit interference from potential distractors with semantic/pragmatic properties in common with the target constituent. The data are discussed in terms of a cue-overload account, in which interference both arises from and is mediated through a direct-access retrieval mechanism that utilizes a linear, weighted cue-combinatoric scheme. © 2011 Elsevier Inc.

Frost R.,Hebrew University of Jerusalem | Frost R.,Haskins Laboratories
Behavioral and Brain Sciences | Year: 2012

In the last decade, reading research has seen a paradigmatic shift. A new wave of computational models of orthographic processing that offer various forms of noisy position or context-sensitive coding have revolutionized the field of visual word recognition. The influx of such models stems mainly from consistent findings, coming mostly from European languages, regarding an apparent insensitivity of skilled readers to letter order. Underlying the current revolution is the theoretical assumption that the insensitivity of readers to letter order reflects the special way in which the human brain encodes the position of letters in printed words. The present article discusses the theoretical shortcomings and misconceptions of this approach to visual word recognition. A systematic review of data obtained from a variety of languages demonstrates that letter-order insensitivity is neither a general property of the cognitive system nor a property of the brain in encoding letters. Rather, it is a variant and idiosyncratic characteristic of some languages, mostly European, reflecting a strategy of optimizing encoding resources, given the specific structure of words. Since the main goal of reading research is to develop theories that describe the fundamental and invariant phenomena of reading across orthographies, an alternative approach to model visual word recognition is offered. The dimensions of a possible universal model of reading, which outlines the common cognitive operations involved in orthographic processing in all writing systems, are discussed. © 2012 Cambridge University Press.

Repp B.H.,Haskins Laboratories
Human Movement Science | Year: 2010

To assess individual differences in basic synchronization skills and in perceptual sensitivity to timing deviations, brief tests made up of isochronous auditory sequences containing phase shifts or tempo changes were administered to 31 college students (most of them with little or no music training) and nine highly trained musicians (graduate students of music performance). Musicians showed smaller asynchronies, lower tapping variability, and greater perceptual sensitivity than college students, on average. They also showed faster phase correction following a tempo change in the pacing sequence. Unexpectedly, however, phase correction following a simple phase shift was unusually quick in both groups, especially in college students. It emerged that some of the musicians, who had previous experience with laboratory synchronization tasks, showed a much slower corrective response to phase shifts than did the other musicians. When these others were retested after having gained some task experience, their phase correction was slower than previously. These results show (1) that instantaneous phase correction in response to phase perturbations is more common than was previously believed, and suggest that (2) gradual phase correction is not a shortcoming but reflects a reduction in the strength of sensorimotor coupling afforded by practice. © 2009 Elsevier B.V.

Krivokapic J.,University of Michigan | Krivokapic J.,Haskins Laboratories
Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences | Year: 2014

Prosodic structure is a grammatical component that serves multiple functions in the production, comprehension and acquisition of language. Prosodic boundaries are critical for the understanding of the nature of the prosodic structure of language, and important progress has been made in the past decades in illuminating their properties. We first review recent prosodic boundary research from the point of view of gestural coordination. We then go on to tie in this work to questions of speech planning and manual and head movement. We conclude with an outline of a new direction of research which is needed for a full understanding of prosodic boundaries and their role in the speech production process. © 2014 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

When tapping is paced by an auditory sequence containing small phase shift (PS) perturbations, the phase correction response (PCR) of the tap following a PS increases with the baseline interonset interval (IOI), leading eventually to overcorrection (B. H. Repp, 2008). Experiment 1 shows that this holds even for fixed-size PSs that become imperceptible as the IOI increases (here, from 400 to 1200 ms). Earlier research has also shown (but only for IOI = 500 ms) that the PCR is proportionally smaller for large than for small PSs (B. H. Repp, 2002a, 2002b). Experiment 2 introduced large PSs and found smaller PCRs than in Experiment 1, at all of the same IOIs. In Experiments 3A and 3B, the author investigated whether the change in slope of the sigmoid function relating PCR and PS magnitudes occurs at a fixed absolute or relative PS magnitude across different IOIs (600, 1000, 1400 ms). The results suggest no clear answer; the exact shape of the function may depend on the range of PSs used in an experiment. Experiment 4 examined the PCR in the IOI range from 1000 to 2000 ms and found overcorrection throughout, but with the PCR increasing much more gradually than in Experiment 1. These results provide important new information about the phase correction process and pose challenges for models of sensorimotor synchronization, which presently cannot explain nonlinear PCR functions and overcorrection. Copyright © Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.

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