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ERIC Number: EJ919160
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Apr
Pages: 18
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 52
ISSN: ISSN-0090-6905
Disambiguating Information and Memory Resources in Children's Processing of Italian Relative Clauses
Arosio, Fabrizio; Guasti, Maria Teresa; Stucchi, Natale
Journal of Psycholinguistic Research, v40 n2 p137-154 Apr 2011
We investigated the role of number agreement on verb and of animacy in the comprehension of subject and object relative clauses in 51 monolingual Italian-speaking children, mean age 9:33, tested through a self-paced listening experiment with a final comprehension question. A "digit span test" and a "listening span test" were also administered to examine the role of memory in comprehension. Subject relative clauses were easier to comprehend than object relative clauses; animacy of the relative clause head improved comprehension of object relative clauses; memory, as measured by the digit span test, modulates comprehension of object relative clauses, both with animate and inanimate heads, as shown in response accuracy. Although all children process number agreement morphology on the verb, only some perform a correct reanalysis, as shown by the accuracy measures. We argue that number agreement disambiguation is particularly taxing for children, as it provides a negative symptom in the sense of Fodor and Inoue (J Psycholinguist Res 29(1):25-36, 2000) and reanalysis requires them to hold two dependencies in memory.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Elementary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Italy