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ERIC Number: EJ941747
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Mar
Pages: 9
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-1363-755X
An Image Is Worth a Thousand Words: Why Nouns Tend to Dominate Verbs in Early Word Learning
McDonough, Colleen; Song, Lulu; Hirsh-Pasek, Kathy; Golinkoff, Roberta Michnick; Lannon, Robert
Developmental Science, v14 n2 p181-189 Mar 2011
Nouns are generally easier to learn than verbs (e.g. Bornstein, 2005; Bornstein et al., 2004; Gentner, 1982; Maguire, Hirsh-Pasek & Golinkoff, 2006). Yet, verbs appear in children's earliest vocabularies, creating a seeming paradox. This paper examines one hypothesis about the difference between noun and verb acquisition. Perhaps the advantage nouns have is not a function of grammatical form class but rather is related to a word's imageability. Here, word imageability ratings and form class (nouns and verbs) were correlated with age of acquisition according to the MacArthur-Bates Communicative Development Inventory (CDI; Fenson et al., 1994). CDI age of acquisition was negatively correlated with words' imageability ratings. Further, a word's imageability contributes to the variance of the word's age of acquisition above and beyond form class, suggesting that at the beginning of word learning, imageability might be a driving factor.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A