ERIC Number: ED416669
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1996
The Role of Verb Information in Syntactic Ambiguity Resolution.
Kennison, Shelia M.
This study, consisting of two experiments, investigated the role of verb information in resolving ambiguous noun phrases (NPs) in reading comprehension. Both experiments extended earlier studies. The first measured and compared reading time for sentences containing temporarily ambiguous subject complements and unambiguous complements, which were preceded by NP- or subject-biased verbs. Subjects were 24 university students, undergraduates and graduates fluent in American English. In the second experiment, new conditions were added; reading time was measured on sentences containing temporarily ambiguous NP complements and containing ambiguous subject complements and unambiguous complements, also preceded by NP- or subject-biased verbs. Subjects were 36 university students, undergraduates and graduates fluent in American English. In each experiment, the length of ambiguous NP was independently varied by the presence or absence of a following modifier. Results of both experiments support the filtering view; when readers encountered ambiguous NPs, they minimally attached the ambiguous NPs as NP complements and later used verb information to evaluate and possibly filter this analysis. Contains 28 references. (MSE)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: In: MIT Occasional Papers in Linguistics, 1999.