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While crucial for phoneme distinctions in the Finnish language, mere vowel duration is of lower relevance as a phonetically distinctive cue in the German language. To investigate the pre-attentive processing of vowel duration between these two languages, the mismatch negativity (MMN), a component of the auditory event-related potential (ERP) that is an(More)
OBJECTIVE This study investigated the influence of the familiarity of an environmental sound on sound processing outside the focus of attention. METHODS By comparing ERPs elicited by a familiar, animal sound and an acoustically matched, but unfamiliar, complex sound, three issues were addressed: (a) general differences in the processing of the familiar(More)
We investigated the detection of rare task-irrelevant changes in the lexical status of speech stimuli. Participants performed a nonlinguistic task on word and pseudoword stimuli that occurred, in separate conditions, rarely or frequently. Task performance for pseudowords was deteriorated relative to words, suggesting unintentional lexical analysis.(More)
This study addressed the extraction of long-term sound familiarity as a higher-order feature of complex, environmental sounds. Physically variable, familiar animal sounds and spectrotemporally matched, unfamiliar control sounds were presented. Participants ignored the acoustic stimuli. Infrequent deviant sounds violated the familiarity status established by(More)
Newborns and infants communicate their needs and physiological states through crying and emotional facial expressions. Little is known about individual differences in responding to infant crying. Several theories suggest that people vary in their environmental sensitivity with some responding generally more and some generally less to environmental stimuli.(More)
Emotional cues can guide selective attention processes. However, emotional stimuli can both activate long-term memory representations reflecting general world knowledge and engage newly formed memory representations representing specific knowledge from the immediate past. Here, the self-completion feature of associative memory was utilized to assess the(More)
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