NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ1139378
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017-Apr
Pages: 24
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0364-0213
Preschoolers' Acquisition of Novel Verbs in the Double Object Dative
Arunachalam, Sudha
Cognitive Science, v41 suppl 4 p831-854 Apr 2017
Children have difficulty comprehending novel verbs in the double object dative (e.g., "Fred blicked the dog a stick") as compared to the prepositional dative (e.g., "Fred blicked a stick to the dog"). We explored this pattern with 3 and 4 year olds (N = 60). In Experiment 1, we replicated the documented difficulty with the double object frame, even though we provided more contextual support. In Experiment 2, we tested a novel hypothesis that children would comprehend novel verbs in, and generalize them to, the double object frame if they were first familiarized to the verbs in the prepositional frame. They did, suggesting that part of their difficulty with the double object frame is due to uncertainty about a new verb's semantic/syntactic properties, information that the easy-to-comprehend prepositional frame provides. The benefits of training were short-lived, however; children again struggled after a 2-h delay. The results are discussed in the context of mechanisms underlying verb acquisition.
Wiley-Blackwell. 350 Main Street, Malden, MA 02148. Tel: 800-835-6770; Tel: 781-388-8598; Fax: 781-388-8232; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: National Institutes of Health (DHHS)
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Massachusetts (Boston)
Grant or Contract Numbers: K01DC013306