NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ1155860
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017-Oct
Pages: 31
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0267-6583
Frequency, Contingency and Online Processing of Multiword Sequences: An Eye-Tracking Study
Yi, Wei; Lu, Shiyi; Ma, Guojie
Second Language Research, v33 n4 p519-549 Oct 2017
Frequency and contingency are two primary statistical factors that drive the acquisition and processing of language. This study explores the role of phrasal frequency and contingency (the co-occurrence probability/statistical association of the constituent words in multiword sequences) during online processing of multiword sequences. Meanwhile, it also examines language users' sensitivity to the two types of statistical information. Using the eye-tracking paradigm, native and advanced nonnative speakers of Chinese were instructed to read 80 disyllabic two-word Chinese adverbial sequences embedded in sentence contexts. Eye movements of the participants were recorded using both early and late measures. Mixed-effects modeling revealed that both phrasal frequency and contingency influenced the processing of the adverbial sequences; however, they were likely to function in different time windows. In addition, both native and nonnative speakers were sensitive to the phrasal frequency and contingency of the sequences, though their degrees of such sensitivity differed. Our findings suggest that adult language learners retain the statistical learning ability in second language acquisition and they may share a general statistical learning mechanism with native speakers when processing multiword sequences.
SAGE Publications. 2455 Teller Road, Thousand Oaks, CA 91320. Tel: 800-818-7243; Tel: 805-499-9774; Fax: 800-583-2665; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: China (Beijing)
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A