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ERIC Number: EJ1010224
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 13
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 46
ISSN: ISSN-0009-3920
Development of Abstract Grammatical Categorization in Infants
Cyr, Marilyn; Shi, Rushen
Child Development, v84 n2 p617-629 Mar-April 2013
This study examined abstract syntactic categorization in infants, using the case of grammatical gender. Ninety-six French-learning 14-, 17-, 20-, and 30-month-olds completed the study. In a preferential looking procedure infants were tested on their generalized knowledge of grammatical gender involving pseudonouns and gender-marking determiners. The pseudonouns were controlled to contain no phonological or acoustical cues to gender. The determiner gender feature was the only information available. During familiarization, some pseudonouns followed a masculine determiner and others a feminine determiner. Test trials presented the same pseudonouns with different determiners in correct (consistent with familiarization gender pairing) versus incorrect gender agreement. Twenty-month-olds showed emerging knowledge of gender categorization and agreement. This knowledge was robust in 30-month-olds. These findings demonstrate that abstract, productive grammatical representations are present early in acquisition. (Contains 2 tables and 2 figures.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Canada (Montreal)