3-6-2017 Foundations of Language and Word Learning Why is language important? - Human languages appears to be a unique phenomenon without significant analogues in the animal world o Unique to human Language allows us to be human—inventing everything and community - Human vocalization for flexibles in purpose, unlike other primates o You can use a vocalization to squIf you want to learn more check out What is a process of motivating someone, through communication, to change a particular belief, attitude or behavior?
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eal and cry—positive, negative and neutral o Noises that we make with our mouths from step one is diff than primates What counts as language? - Every newborn communicates from birth to 3 months using 5 distinct sounds Language: - Shared system of arbitrary symbols that refer to things, even in the absence of those things - Arbitrary symbols- no relationship between sound and meaning - Intentionally communicative o Idea that you want to get across by saying these words - Follows rules of structure (grammar) How do children being learning language? - Recognizing speech o What is speech and all other noise - Categorizing sounds - Finding words - Finding meaning and understand communication Recognizing Speech - Babies come into world prepared to recognized speech - As soon as they are born, infants prefer to listen to o Their mom, their native language, things they heard a lot in the womb, and infant directed speech - Infant Directed Speech (IDS) o The speaking style asuldes use when talking to children o Pitch is highly variable o Shorter utterances o More pauses o Experiment and graph—everything is not so variable in adult speech, but it is while talking to children There are more pauses, exaggerated For both mothers and fathers—there is higher pitch and more variability ∙ Fathers are still lower because they have lower voices o Why might parents use IDS? Gets infants’ attention—stimulating It conveys emotion—gets them into what they do it ∙ This is why infants prefer to listen to it over adult directed speech Might hilghy words in the speech stream ∙ That word that is high pitched—focuses that word— baby pays attention to it and keep it in them Categorizing Sounds - Caterogrial perception - Do infants perceive speech sounds categorically? o Not just seeing speech as continuous variable but cateogricaizing sounds into different cateogires - Infants are born able to discriminate between all languages, but lose the ability by 12 months—they lose the ability to distibguish bwtween sounds thye haven’t experiences o English speeking babies—6-8 months are good at it, 8-10 months not as good, and by 12 months—lose the ability Finding Words - Why might it be a problem for infants? o There is no silence between words and speech—sounds might just flow o The silences in the sentences don’t line up with the words—can be within words - What types of information could children use to parse words out of continueous speech stream? o Stress information Many languages have consistent stress patten for multisyllabic words ∙ 90% of words stress the beg (MOmmy, Doggy,) ∙ 10% at the end—guitar 7.5 months old can make use of this information ∙ since the strong weak—stress pattern does not cover 100% of English words, this strategy can lead to mistakes as well o guiTAR is= can be segmented into gui taris o Statistical Regularities Sounds or syllables that are part of the same word reliability follow another—high transitional probability ∙ Pretty—ty follow re Sounds or syllables that are not part of same GET FROM SLIDES Results—intants listened longer to nonwords and part words ∙ 2 minutes were suffiencent for tehm to parse the wors out of the speech stream by using transitional probabliies ∙ this kind of information can be used by young kids to figure out where the words are o Phonotactic Concerns Phonotactic constraints—the sound combinations allowed by a language ∙ Nt- can occur within a words in the English language, but mt cannot be found, but it is allowed in German ∙ Use this info to segment words o If you run into mt, you have a word boundary between the m and the t—com(e) to class YOUNG CHILDREN COME INTO THE WORLD PREPARED TO RECONGINZE SPEECH, CATEGORIZE SOUNDS, FIND WORDS—capacities that kids come into the world with - Start to figure it out and isolate words, but still need the meaning Finding meaning- - 8 months to 18 months— o 10-15 words at 8 months to understand, but at 16 months— median is around 150 words—much variality though o to talk—crazy variability—takes long—by 14 months can only say a handful of words o predicatable vocabulatry - the compostion of early vocabulary o size of vocab on x axis, and y axis—proportion of learn social terms quckly and aren’t that many of them, so goes down, but nouns start high and continue high because there are so many ∙ nouns are overrepresented because they can see them and people talk about them o once you know nouns, you can move on - the problem of mapping words to meaning (quine) o parent says “gavagai!”—what can it mean gavagai can mean dog, but is also can mean fur, eye, brown, nose, pebbele. Dog’s name, big thing- infinite possibilities of meaning ∙ no way of knowing really but how can children overcome this then?? Possibilbel solutions to the induction problem: ∙ Word learning constraints/assumptions o Either built in or learned very early—can constrain it o Sensitivity to social cues (eye gaze, pointing) o Cross situational statistics What is there when you hear the word in specific environments ∙ Word Learning constraint o Children coe ot the word leanring situation with some innate or very early developing best first guesses reared word meaning, which constrain the space of possible things a word could refer to Whole object assumption ∙ Children assume that new words they hear refer to whole object— gavagai—is whole object—can’t be paw, but can be dog, pebble or collar ∙ Is this enough though? What else do you need? Taxonomic assumption—categories of individuals ∙ Children assume that new words that they hear refer to whole objects in taxonomic categories o Naming the category o Gavagai can mean dog ∙ Also very useful for word extension —figuring out what other objects can be named by this word o How this word should be used later ∙ At first, this assumption seemed unlikely because young children seemed unable to sort objects into taxonomic categories o Prefer thematic relations— prefer to sort objects by things together o Hats with people- because people wear hats, not two people or two hatso Came up with task where you showed the child an object with either no word or word— so hand them a toy dog and say—can you give me another one? Half the time they give a dog and half time they give bones (thematic), but with word, they go with the category and show dog ∙ When they learn a new word— assume that it is representing a whole object Mutual exclusivity assumption— everything has a name ∙ Many words don’t refer to whole objects—want to teach nose or tail, so this comes to the rescue ∙ Mutual exclustivity= words are mutally exclusive= each object has only one label o Its not a bird, it’s a parrot o Child already knows the word dog, so kids infers that gavagai must mean something else ∙ Evidence—If they know word for something, then think that it must mean a part—they know fish, so when asked, which is the fin, they are able to say part ∙ Hand child an interesting toy— o Within 1 sec, the chld activiely checks the speaker—when they hear a novel word, they see what the speaker is looking at o Show child both toyds, and ask can you hand them the new word, and see if they can hand you the right thing 16-17 months—chose at chance—they aren’t sure 18-19 months- 66% correctly choose the object that they were not playing with ∙ they were actively playing before, so have to grasp their attention∙ right hear is where you see the inflection point—when learn new words, have to pay attention to intentions of speaker Cross Situational Word Learning ∙ It takes a long time ∙ Show them a target and distractor—14 months look at the target—they are pretty sure they know which one it is o Smth and Yu How do children begin learning language? - Recgonziging speech from birth—prepared for it - Categorize speech sounds—learn to hear souns that their language uses - Finding words—use diff strategies—pay attention to stress, natural stats - Finding meaning and understanding communatiocnation—map words onto correct graphs3-8-2017 Grammar and communication Language is Hierarchal Organized - Literally perceptual stimulus—sound waves - Phonological level—individual phonemes and different sounds - Morphological/lexical level—words - Syntactical level—sentence diagram and understanding how a sentence worked Children need to process all of these simultaneously - How do they understand the order in which sentences need to go? Acquisition of Syntax - Understanding words have to be innate - Words are independent from syntax—universal grammar has to be there - Words grammatically can be put in a sentence and still not make sense —have the right parts to it but not make sense—but you can’t fudge around with the sentence order because it doesn’t adhere to properties and language - Rules of syntax in language that governs word order independently from what makes the sentence make sense o Colorless green ideas sleep furiously—correct grammarly, but doesn’t make sense Hierarchal Structure - 2 sisters reunited after 18 year at check-out counter—what does this mean - Drunk gets nine months in violin case - Depends how you parse the sentence—can make sense - Acquisition of vocabulary and words are independent from how words go together Grammatical Development Through Youtube - Babbling o Language o It has to do with practicing sounds of language Even deaf children—babble with hands - Words- learn one words - Telegraphic- snippets of sentences—not full blown grammar but have meaning still - Speech but sometimes it doesn’t come out just right - Pretty rapid development—from age 1 (speech sounds) to age 3 (making sentences) Four Hypotheses-- Innate o Aquiting structure without input o Young deaf children who are unable to acquire an oral language naturally and have not been exposed to a convential manual language were found to use spontaneously a gesture system that has some if the structural characteristic of early child language o Point to look at—moms try to sign with kids, and then the child’s use Mom’s use of the construction and child’s are very different ∙ Mom’s vary quite a bit and try to come up with different constructions, but child does the same thing every time and generate the same kind of structure o Non Standard Language Input Nicaraguan Sign Language developed into a full-fledged language through their interactions of generation of children ∙ They started making up their own language and signs—and then developed into a full fledge language with rules—they constructed the grammatical rules - Correct/direction teaching o No evidence the parents correct grammar When the children make an error, parents don’t correct the children ∙ Says that’s right… ∙ When there is disapproval—it is more about the content, not the grammar o Children don’t pick up on the corrections when people correct them They are focused on communicating—not focused on grammar, as long as they get their meaning across o Reformulation as Negative Evidence Parents aren’t explicitly correcting, but continuing the conversation and providing more evidence Reformulation of children’s utterances can serve as negative evidence ∙ What did you do? Can I go to school? You went to school with your brother? o They reformaulte it in the grammatically correct form and elaborate it, but not actually correct o Some level they are correcting it, but they are not actively correcting it - Imitation o Wug Test Know how to make it plural ∙ Either add s or es to the end ∙ Almost entirely regulars: book books o Very few irregular forms (about 10 forms) Know how to make it past tense ∙ Mostly regular and occasional 100 different irregular forms Implicit understanding of how to do this and can generalize it If children say “goed” then they learned the past tense rule, and not just imitating because that is not how we say it o - rule learning o mind as generalizer similarity, analogy-- new behavior is created by analogy to old behavior probabilistic rules—mental representation as probabilistic rules o Eat ate Learning error—should really be eated normally—not regular ∙ If innate, then should always be ate because no one says eated ∙ Rule Learning—first it will start off at ate because of innate, but then learn the past tense rule and start saying ate (the incorrect form), but then levels off with ate (correct form) ∙ This happens actually o This only makes sense with learning and generalizing grammatical rules Overregulatization ∙ Some irregulars learned by rote o Tense to be very high frequency o Then over-generalizing the predominant pattern o Finally, correct performance on regualrs o Syntactic Bootstrapping—slideeee Nouns you don’t have to do much to figure it out But mass nouns and verbs you have to learn grammar Because of the structure of the sentence, you know that duck is the actor and bunny is being acted upoin, and by age 2, children look or point at the correct thing ∙ With girl and boy- they can do it under age two ∙ With syntax—they can figure it out Four Hypothesis - Innate- but, depends on input - Corrective/direct teaching—but parents don’t correct and kids don’t care when they do - Imitation—but kids generalize beyond their evidence - Rule learning—generalize based on input o Innateness, teaching, or imitation are not enough to learn grammar—need to learn rules from input Learning to Communicate - How we use language to communicate Turn-taking - Baby smiles and then mom response and then baby burps and mother responds and then baby sounds and mom repsonds—beginnings of turn taking o Baby might not be communicative but mom is implicitly showing talk and response - Begins in earliest interactions Gaze Following - Babies can follow gaze by around 9 months - Helps establish joint attention—proablay talking about whats over there - Recognize speaker intention from gaze by about 16 months—talking about what youre looking at, not what the baby was looking at Poin Communicataly by about 1 year - To get something they want - To share attention - To inform location o They understand that pointing gesture has meaning and meaning can be interpreted by adults From beginning, language use is driven by desire to communicate and share intention - At its root that is what language is about Pragmatic Failure - Preschoolares have difficultey taking prospective o Egocentric - Pragmatic and communiation o When you say one thing and then another thing, they are supposed to be connected to each other o Quantity: give only as much information as is necessaryo Quality: be truthful o Relation: be relevant o Manner: be clear in what you are saying Don’t want to be too vague or give too many details, stay on topic to context, don’t be ambiguous and just be clear— so we can read into what people mean - Scaler Implicature o Some of the students came to class Implies not all came to class Children make errors in implicature until surprisingly late (around 5)— ∙ Some of the horses jumped over the fence (when all did) o Children go with literal meaning, but until age 5- wouldn’t say all of them They understand some means at least 1 Understanin Pragmaticis - Childrenhave the chalgnefge of not only learning individual - SLIDESSS Languae Learning - Learning words o Convergen strategies o Importance of input - Learning grammar o Inferring rules from varied input - Learning to communicate o Early turn taking o Learning to make pragmatic inferences