Manuela Friedrich

Learn More
To understand mechanisms of early language acquisition, it is important to know whether the child's brain acts in an adult-like manner when processing words in meaningful contexts. The N400, a negative component in the eventrelated potential (ERP) of adults, is a sensitive index of semantic processing reflecting neural mechanisms of semantic integration(More)
We recorded event-related potentials (ERPs) in 2-month-old infants in two different states of alertness: awake and asleep. Syllables varying in vowel duration (long vs short) were presented in an oddball paradigm, known to elicit a mismatch brain response. ERPs of both groups showed a mismatch response reflected in a positivity followed by a frontal(More)
During their first year of life, infants not only acquire probabilistic knowledge about the phonetic, prosodic, and phonotactic organization of their native language, but also begin to establish first lexical-semantic representations. The present study investigated the sensitivity to phonotactic regularities and its impact on semantic processing in(More)
Language is the most important faculty that distinguishes humans from other animals. Infants learn their native language fast and effortlessly during the first years of life, as a function of the linguistic input in their environment. Behavioral studies reported the discrimination of melodic contours [1] and stress patterns [2, 3] in 1-4-month-olds.(More)
The present study investigated whether delayed auditory processing typically found in children with specific language impairment (SLI) can already be observed in the event-related potentials of 2-month-old infants. Infants with and without a family history of SLI were tested in a passive auditory oddball paradigm with CV-syllables differing in vowel(More)
This study investigates by means of the event-related brain potential whether mechanisms of lexical priming and semantic integration are already developed in 14-month-olds. While looking at coloured pictures of known objects children were presented with basic-level words that were either congruous or incongruous to the pictures. The event-related potential(More)
The present study used the N400, an electrophysiological correlate of semantic processing, to investigate 19- and 24-month-old children's ability to integrate the meaning of words in a sentential context. Children listened passively to semantically appropriate sentences and to sentences in which the object noun violates the selection restriction of the(More)
There has been general consensus that initial word learning during early infancy is a slow and time-consuming process that requires very frequent exposure, whereas later in development, infants are able to quickly learn a novel word for a novel meaning. From the perspective of memory maturation, this shift in behavioral development might represent a shift(More)
Recent developmental research on word processing has shown that mechanisms of lexical priming are already present in 12-month-olds whereas mechanisms of semantic integration indexed by the N400 mature a few months later. In a longitudinal setting we investigated whether the occurrence of an N400 at 19 months is associated with the children's language skills(More)
Beyond its multiple functions in language comprehension and emotional shaping, prosodic cues play a pivotal role for the infant's amazingly rapid acquisition of language. However, cortical correlates of prosodic processing are largely controversial, even in adults, and functional imaging data in children are sparse. We here use an approach which allows to(More)