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ERIC Number: EJ994845
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013-Mar
Pages: 22
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0023-8309
Perception and Bias in the Processing of Compound versus Phrasal Stress: Evidence from Event-Related Brain Potentials
McCauley, Stewart M; Hestvik, Arild; Vogel, Irene
Language and Speech, v56 n1 p23-44 Mar 2013
Previous research using picture/word matching tasks has demonstrated a tendency to incorrectly interpret phrasally stressed strings as compounds. Using event-related potentials, we sought to determine whether this pattern stems from poor perceptual sensitivity to the compound/phrasal stress distinction, or from a post-perceptual bias in behavioral response selection. A secondary aim was to gain insight into the role played by contrastive stress patterns in online sentence comprehension. The behavioral results replicated previous findings of a preference for compounds, but the electrophysiological data suggested a robust sensitivity to both stress patterns. When incongruent with the context, both compound and phrasal stress elicited a sustained left-lateralized negativity. Moreover, incongruent compound stress elicited a centro-parietal negativity (N400), while incongruent phrasal stress elicited a late posterior positivity (P600). We conclude that the previous findings of a preference for compounds are due to response selection bias, and not a lack of perceptual sensitivity. The present results complement previous evidence for the immediate use of meter in semantic processing, as well as evidence for late interactions between prosodic and syntactic information. (Contains 5 figures and 5 notes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Delaware