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ERIC Number: EJ1065029
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015
Pages: 25
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 72
ISSN: ISSN-1048-9223
Bootstrapping the Syntactic Bootstrapper: Probabilistic Labeling of Prosodic Phrases
Gutman, Ariel; Dautriche, Isabelle; Crabbé, Benoît; Christophe, Anne
Language Acquisition: A Journal of Developmental Linguistics, v22 n3 p285-309 2015
The "syntactic bootstrapping" hypothesis proposes that syntactic structure provides children with cues for learning the meaning of novel words. In this article, we address the question of how children might start acquiring some aspects of syntax before they possess a sizeable lexicon. The study presents two models of early syntax acquisition that rest on three major assumptions grounded in the infant literature: First, infants have access to phrasal prosody; second, they pay attention to words situated at the edges of prosodic boundaries; third, they know the meaning of a handful of words. The models take as input a corpus of French child-directed speech tagged with prosodic boundaries and assign syntactic labels to prosodic phrases. The excellent performance of these models shows the feasibility of the syntactic bootstrapping hypothesis, since elements of syntactic structure can be constructed by relying on prosody, function words, and a minimal semantic knowledge.
Psychology Press. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A