Questions tagged [language]

For questions about the psychology and neuroscience of the production and perception of oral and written language.

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Is language an abstract concept that is voiced out though a national tongue?

When discussing with my son about a possible future (from the progress of technology point of view), he mentioned that it would be great to have a brain implant that would finally allow everyone to ...
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Does the wording of official ethnicity questions influence perceptions in the longer term?

It is well known that the sequence in which questions are asked in a survey can affect answers as earlier questions can influence the frame of mind in which a respondent answers a subsequent question. ...
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What is verbal memory useful for?

A friend of mine did the Verbal Memory Test at http://humanbenchmark.com/ and got an extremely high score (almost 300 words). English is not his first language and he knew the meaning of only about ...
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Why do expat children acquire accents more effectively than adults?

I’ve seen a number of children go through the same process, and I’m asking this question because I’d love to understand them better. Children, after relocating to a country with a language with which ...
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2 votes
1 answer
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Psychologist with different language and culture

Is it better to find a psychologist who is from the same culture, same language, same country .., so he/she will easily understand the problems we'll be speaking about ? I'm Algerian, living in France,...
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2 votes
0 answers
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Has research established a negative relation between gender-neutral language and gender stereotyping of known individuals?

There has been some research on the effect of gender-neutral language on gender stereotypes. For instance, Lindqvist et al. (2017) studied the effect of gendered and non-gendered pronouns on ...
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Consciousness without language

It seems that consciousness can only be investigated through self-report, i.e. language/communication of some kind. Is it believed that consciousness could nonetheless exist without language? Yes, it ...
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1 answer
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When delivering a bad news to someone, why shouldn't we show empathy at the beginning?

I've been preparing for a job as a customer service agent recently and there's a common topic called "delivering bad news". A bad news can be a delay in order or a delayed payment on the ...
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Can an autistic person have very advance language skills?

Can an autistic person have very advanced language skills (Verbal communication, not about tonal nor body language skill, nor the written verbal language, I keep dyslexia out of this discussion for ...
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5 votes
0 answers
61 views

Are people more likely to use words they've heard recently in conversation?

I have noticed before that if I use a somewhat uncommon word like "doubtlessly" in conversation, my conversation partner is more likely to say the word again later. Am I falling prey to a ...
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1 vote
1 answer
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how does our brain know how to provide the right instructions to pronounce words?

Children learn to speak by hearing others and then trying to pronounce these words. What I don't understand is: how does their brain know the right instructions to give to the tongue, lips and the ...
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Are well-written warnings more likely to be heeded?

I claim that "warnings are more likely to be read and taken seriously, if they are well-written, without errors". Is this claim supported by psychological science? Like, a warning on a ...
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Any studies about the effect of listening to audio in a foreign language while studying?

Note: this is my first question on this site. If my question is not clear enough, lacks context or I forgot some rule, please tell it in the comments so I can edit my question appropriately. ...
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Would Newspeak actually work for what the Party intends it for? [duplicate]

In George Orwell's novel 1984 the ruling Party is creating a "new version" of English, called Newspeak, which focuses on removing any and all parts of the language which can be used to express any ...
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Is there evidence that individuals consistently prefer entities according to their animacy?

It is evident from language that everyone can distinguish the living entities from the otherwise, or, rather, that there is a scale between two poles that is widely agreed upon. This observation is ...
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2 votes
1 answer
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Chomskian view on grammar

The Chomskian view asserts that certain structural components of grammar are innate to all humans. To support the Chomskian view, the observation that we are able to omit certain pronouns in the ...
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4 votes
0 answers
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Is there any research connected with typing/writing to help in creativity or focus?

In my personal experience, typing my thoughts when I am working through creative problems seem to help. But it's subjective and would like to have some confirmation. Atkin in "The Phenomenological ...
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Books on Statistics in R for behavioral data analysis

Are there any statistics books geared towards teaching behavioral data analysis especially in psycholinguistics?
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1 answer
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Is there any research of spelling errors from a dual-process theory perspective?

Checking the rather comprehensive but somewhat dated 2008 review of Evans on dual-process theories, I didn't see anything about [mis]spelling. But it seems to me an obvious thing to investigate ...
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1 vote
1 answer
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Involuntary misspelling while writing

I'm a native Spanish speaker. In Spanish, the verb "to accept" is "aceptar". When I write it down, or type it on my phone, I tend to write "haceptar" (the H in Spanish is mute, so it'd be pronounced ...
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2 votes
1 answer
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Looking for a paper: AI in human host

I am searching for a paper where participants were confronted with a (female) person, who gave answers according to a computer algorithm. She had an earpiece that gave her the answers and was trained ...
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2 votes
0 answers
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Do we think in language?

Can we think i.e. process the input data without relying on linguistic structures? All knowledge between human is either spoken or written. When we see something, it contributes towards the ...
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1 answer
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Asking for illogical things to make extreme views normal?

A couple of months back I was reading an article about how politicians were asking to make decisions that are way beyond possible (name it unreasonable, unacceptable, illogical) just as a medium of ...
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1 vote
1 answer
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What makes words (entities) positive or negative?

I am conducting a lexicon study asking people to classify words as being positive, negative, or neutral. It seems to be a very natural ability for us to perform such classifications. The next step is ...
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6 votes
1 answer
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Is mapping sound frequencies to the vertical axis universal?

Shrill notes are said to be "high", and rumbles are said to be "low". Humans seem to metaphorically map frequency to the vertical axis, and in the cultures that I know of, high frequency is ...
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3 votes
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Bilingualism and cognitive decline (or dementia risk)

There's apparently a fairly contested research area of bilingualism being neuroprotective against cognitive decline in old age, such as dementia. What are the main points for and against this ...
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Is theory of mind formation accelerated by bilingualism?

Kovács (2009) reported that bilingual children were better at solving a false belief task critical to the fully developed theory of mind (ToM). Has this study been replicated or criticized by others? ...
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1 vote
1 answer
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Can't we teach other intelligent animals "complex" languages?

I assume I'm not the first person to think about this, but I find this idea very useful, and if it works it would really be a major breakthrough (IMO, more important than getting to space). Animals ...
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3 votes
1 answer
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What happens if you lie to a child during language acquisition?

During language acquisition a child can learn 20 words a day. What would happen if the parent decided to lie to the child during this time so that whenever the child said "what that?" the parent made ...
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Other studies of animals with sign language

Dr. Francine Patterson taught a modified form of sign language to Koko, a western lowland gorilla. Much media attention has been focused on Koko, especially after her death, and Patterson herself ...
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3 votes
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Is it an issue to use a model for stimulus selection, when the same model is later tested against fMRI data based on those stimuli?

I am planning an fMRI experiment which looks at similarity of human brain activation when prompted with known words. The goal of the experiment is to compare the similarity of activation with ...
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1 vote
0 answers
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How the Brain Does Garbage Collection in Real Time [duplicate]

When we read a sentence we don't "pay attention to" each letter and the structure of each letter and the placement of the letter and color and lighting and all that. We just "end up with" the meaning ...
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Are there universal facial expressions for asking questions? [closed]

"Dog." "Dog!" "Dog?" We know the first is a statement. The second a warning maybe. And the third a question. Like facial expressions for emotions. Are there universal human facial expressions or ...
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What are the differences between Cognitive, Psycho-linguistic, and Behavioral approaches to learning?

I'm having trouble wrapping my head around cognitive, psycholinguistic, and behaviorist learning acquisition methods in the context of second language acquisition. I don't really understand their ...
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0 answers
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Is there a way for a man to be as sensitive as women in understanding other's thoughts and emotions?

If women are better than men at reading thoughts and emotions by looking at eyes, because they are born for this, then is there a way to make a man to be as sensitive as women? Is it similar to ...
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57 votes
3 answers
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If babies were isolated, would they develop their own language?

Let’s say that two or more babies/infants from the age of 0 were put in an environment without the affection of adults to teach them how to speak. Would the babies after 13 or so years develop their ...
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4 votes
2 answers
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What are the different theories about how the brain processes speech?

When we heard speech the brain needs to go through a series of steps to go from the received sounds to a mainly conceptual meaning that follows from the words involved. This involves solving a series ...
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3 votes
1 answer
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What is the name of the "Things are more visible once you learn about them" phenomenon?

(Excuse the horrible title of this question. I just can't find the proper (?) words. Please edit as pleased.) It happens many times to me that when I learn about something (e.g. a word, a concept, ...
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1 vote
0 answers
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does speakers exhibit change of behavior when switching from one language to another? [duplicate]

I have a strong belief that being a bilingual or multilingual when we switch from one language to another our behavior change accordingly. For example, my native language is Urdu, I feel comfortable, ...
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Polylinguistic Competition [closed]

I'm unsure if there's another exchange that would be more appropriate for this, but I'm curious about my own experiences and wanted to see what this community had to say. Context being that I really ...
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4 votes
1 answer
115 views

Can you become "mentally" bilingual after 8?

Is it possible to learn a second language good enough to be able to think in it the same way we think in our first language after the critical language learning period?
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What is the basic memory-making algorithm? [closed]

What are the fundamental criteria that determine the hierarchy of saved information in the brain? I've discovered that our languages reflect some of those factors. One of them can be sex ...
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3 votes
1 answer
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What makes something relevant to an argument and how can people improve in determining relevance?

Are there any books that examine questions about relevance in general like the following? Relevance Theory seems something else and inapplicable. What makes something (ir)relevant to an argument or ...
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4 votes
1 answer
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What is understanding of natural language and how can we test or measure it?

What is the definition of the understanding of (written) natural language and how can we test or measure this understanding? Natural language understanding is neglected part of natural language ...
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3 votes
1 answer
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What are the limits of language with respect to communicating the actual reasons that go in making a decision? [closed]

Simon Sinek in his book 'Start With Why' claims how the brain might fail to communicate the actual reasons behind a made decision and instead at best rationalize it in retrospect (post hoc), due to ...
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4 votes
1 answer
195 views

Do pictures help young children read (understand meaning) better or does it give them a delayed sense of imagination when decoding information?

I have started to read a book called "Vexed Texts: How Children's Picture Books Promote Illiteracy" by Pamela Protheroe and her belief is that images promotes illiteracy. There seems far too much ...
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2 votes
0 answers
102 views

Do grammatical differences in language affect politics?

I tried very hard to find references on this in Google Scholar and Web of Science, but I fear I don't have enough experience with this area. My partner is great at Spanish, and informed me that in ...
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1 vote
2 answers
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Could any kind of learning be framed as learning a language? [closed]

People learn (or actually acquire) languages naturally. As we grow up, we learn also multiple other skills which we then use in everyday life. A lot of these skills are often compared to a language, ...
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4 votes
1 answer
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Which research article showed that East Asian parents used verbs more to their infants and toddlers?

Which research article showed that East Asian parents used verbs more while White parents used adjectives more and had implications for causal and math learning? Please give the citation of the ...
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5 votes
0 answers
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Is there a fundamental difference in the way we think while writing when compared to speaking?

I had a discussion with my friend recently about slip-ups in speech - the ones where you intented a gramatically correct sentence but somewhere between the conscious mind and your mouth a (usually ...
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