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We recorded event-related brain potentials (ERPs) while participants read sentences, some of which contained an anomalous word. In the critical sentences (e.g., The meal was devouring.. .), the syntactic cues unambiguously signaled an Agent interpretation of the subject noun, whereas the semantic cues supported a Theme interpretation. An Agent(More)
Event-related potentials were recorded from 13 scalp locations while participants read sentences containing a syntactic ambiguity. In Experiment 1, syntactically disambiguating words that were inconsistent with the "favored" syntactic analysis elicited a positive-going brain potential (P600). Experiment 2 examined whether syntactic ambiguities are resolved(More)
Prior work has suggested that open- and closed-class words elicit negative components in the event-related potential (ERP) that differ in timing and scalp distribution. We tested this hypothesis against the possibility that the word-class effects are attributable to quantitative differences in word length and frequency. Event-related brain potentials (ERPs)(More)
Event-related brain potentials (ERPs) were recorded while 14 males and 14 females read sentences containing a reflexive pronoun that referred to a definitionally or stereotypically male or female antecedent noun. Pronouns that disagreed with the gender definition or gender stereotype of the antecedent elicited a large-amplitude positive wave. Violations of(More)
Presumably, second-language (L2) learning is mediated by changes in the brain. Little is known about what changes in the brain, how the brain changes, or when these changes occur during learning. Here, we illustrate by way of example how modern brain-based methods can be used to discern some of the changes that occur during L2 learning. Preliminary results(More)
In two experiments, event-related brain potentials (ERPs) were recorded from 13 scalp locations while subjects read sentences containing a syntactically or a semantically anomalous word. The position (sentence-embedded vs sentence-final) and word class (open vs closed) of the syntactic anomalies were manipulated. In both experiments, semantically anomalous(More)
Abstract Event-related brain potentials (ERPs) were recorded from 13 scalp electrodes while subjects read sentences, some of which contained either a verb that disagreed in number with the subject noun (syntactic anomaly) or a word in uppercase letters (physical anomaly). Uppercase words elicited the P300 complex of positivities, whereas agreement(More)
We examined the effects of syntactic (tense) violations occurring on regularly versus irregularly inflected verbs using event-related brain potentials (ERPs). Participants read sentences in which the main verb varied in terms of regularity (regular vs. irregular), frequency (high vs. low), and grammati-cality (tense violation vs. no tense violation). For(More)
Research on the neurobiology of second language (L2) learning has historically focused on localization questions and relied on cross-sectional designs. Here, we describe an alternative paradigm involving longitudinal studies of adult, novice learners who are progressing through an introductory sequence of classroom-based L2 instruction. The goal of this(More)