Paola E. Dussias

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The use of two or more languages is common in most of the world. Yet, until recently, bilingualism was considered to be a complicating factor for language processing, cognition, and the brain. The past 20 years have witnessed an upsurge of research on bilingualism to examine language acquisition and processing, their cognitive and neural bases, and the(More)
Using a self-paced moving window reading paradigm, we examine the degree to which structural commitments made while 60 Spanish-English L2 speakers read syntactically ambiguous sentences in their second language (L2) are constrained by the verb's lexical entry about its preferred structural environment (i.e., subcategorization bias). The ambiguity under(More)
We report two experiments that investigate the effects of sentence context on bilingual lexical access in Spanish and English. Highly proficient Spanish-English bilinguals read sentences in Spanish and English that included a marked word to be named. The word was either a cognate with similar orthography and/or phonology in the two languages, or a matched(More)
Verb bias, or the tendency of a verb to appear with a certain type of complement, has been employed in psycholinguistic literature as a tool to test competing models of sentence processing. To date, the vast majority of sentence processing research involving verb bias has been conducted almost exclusively with monolingual speakers, and predominantly with(More)
This study investigates grammatical gender and number processing marked on clitic pronouns in native Spanish speakers and in late English-Spanish bilinguals using ERPs. Spanish clitic pronouns were chosen as a critical grammatical structure which is absent in English, and which encodes both grammatical gender and number. Number, but not grammatical gender,(More)
Subject-verb agreement is a computation that is often difficult to execute perfectly in the first language (L1) and even more difficult to produce skillfully in a second language (L2). In this study, we examined the way in which bilingual speakers complete sentence fragments in a manner that reflects access to both grammatical and conceptual number. In two(More)
Using code-switching as a tool to illustrate how language experience modulates comprehension, the visual world paradigm was employed to examine the extent to which gender-marked Spanish determiners facilitate upcoming target nouns in a group of Spanish-English bilingual code-switchers. The first experiment tested target Spanish nouns embedded in a carrier(More)
One central question in research on spoken language communication concerns how speakers decide how explicit to make a referential expression. In the present paper, we address the debate between a discourse-based approach and a listener-based approach to the choice of referring expressions by testing second language (L2) learners of English on the production(More)