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1.
J Exp Child Psychol ; 213: 105255, 2022 01.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34388641

RESUMO

Past research documents a bilingual advantage in the domain of executive functions (EFs). However, controversial debates have questioned the robustness of those behavioral differences. The current study aimed to better understand the underlying cognitive prerequisites in bilingual students as compared with monolingual students and focused on two processes: the role of verbal processes, on the one hand, and mental effort during task execution, on the other. The use of self-regulatory speech has been found to be related to performance in tasks requiring EFs. For bilinguals who have grown up with two language systems from an early age, those relations are not fully understood. Furthermore, results from neuroimaging studies have shown that bilinguals might exhibit less mental effort in EF tasks. We investigated both processes in German-speaking monolingual elementary school students (n = 33; Mage = 8.78 years) and German-Russian bilingual elementary school students (n = 34; Mage = 8.88 years) solving a planning task. Results showed that monolinguals were impaired by a verbal secondary task in comparison with a motor control condition, whereas bilinguals performed in both tasks at an equal level, indicating a differential role of self-regulatory speech in both language groups. Analyses of changes in pupil diameter revealed less mental effort during task execution for bilingual children as compared with monolingual children. The current study adds to the existing literature by supplying further evidence for cognitive differences between monolingual and bilingual children.


Assuntos
Multilinguismo , Criança , Cognição , Função Executiva , Humanos , Idioma , Federação Russa
2.
J Child Lang ; : 1-11, 2021 Jun 22.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34154677

RESUMO

Parental socioeconomic status (SES) strongly influences children's language abilities but less is known about its influence on pragmatic abilities (e.g., inferring intentions from relevance implicatures). Moreover, by focussing on SES, the role of socio-cognitive engagement (e.g., joint parent-child interactions) has been overlooked.We tested four- and six-year-old children (n = 92) with a communication task, a questionnaire assessed parents' SES and socio-cognitive engagement.Socio-cognitive engagement predicted children's communication abilities while the parental educational background and income did not. This emphasizes the notion that communication is a highly socio-cognitive task, one which children perform the better the more frequently they engage in socio-cognitive interactions.

3.
Brain Sci ; 10(12)2020 Dec 05.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33291489

RESUMO

Studies in adults showed differential neural processing between overt and inner speech. So far, it is unclear whether inner and overt speech are processed differentially in children. The present study examines the pre-activation of the speech network in order to disentangle domain-general executive control from linguistic control of inner and overt speech production in 6- to 7-year-olds by simultaneously applying electroencephalography (EEG) and functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS). Children underwent a picture-naming task in which the pure preparation of a subsequent speech production and the actual execution of speech can be differentiated. The preparation phase does not represent speech per se but it resembles the setting up of the language production network. Only the fNIRS revealed a larger activation for overt, compared to inner, speech over bilateral prefrontal to parietal regions during the preparation phase. Findings suggest that the children's brain can prepare the subsequent speech production. The preparation for overt and inner speech requires different domain-general executive control. In contrast to adults, the children´s brain did not show differences between inner and overt speech when a concrete linguistic content occurs and a concrete execution is required. This might indicate that domain-specific executive control processes are still under development.

4.
Front Psychol ; 11: 531503, 2020.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33329169

RESUMO

Analogical reasoning by comparison is considered a special case of inductive reasoning, which is fundamental to the scientific method. By reasoning analogically, learners can abstract the underlying commonalities of several entities, thereby ignoring single objects' superficial features. We tested whether different task environments designed to trigger analogical reasoning by comparison would support preschoolers' induction of the concept of material kind to predict and explain objects' floating or sinking as a central aspect of scientific reasoning. Specifically, in two experiments, we investigated whether the number of presented objects (one versus two standards), consisting of a specific material and the labeling of objects with the respective material name, would benefit preschoolers' material-based inferences. For each item set used in both experiments, we asked the children (N = 59 in Experiment 1, N = 99 in Experiment 2) to predict an object's floating or sinking by matching it to the standards and to verbally explain their selections. As expected, we found a significant effect for the number of standards in both experiments on the prediction task, suggesting that children successfully induced the relevance of material kind by comparison. However, labels did not increase the effect of the standards. In Experiment 2, we found that the children could transfer their conceptual knowledge on material kind but that transfer performance did not differ among the task environments. Our findings suggest that tasks inviting analogical reasoning by comparison with two standards are useful for promoting young children's scientific reasoning.

5.
Brain Sci ; 10(3)2020 Mar 04.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-32143405

RESUMO

Speech production not only relies on spoken (overt speech) but also on silent output (inner speech). Little is known about whether inner and overt speech are processed differently and which neural mechanisms are involved. By simultaneously applying electroencephalography (EEG) and functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS), we tried to disentangle executive control from motor and linguistic processes. A preparation phase was introduced additionally to the examination of overt and inner speech directly during naming (i.e., speech execution). Participants completed a picture-naming paradigm in which the pure preparation phase of a subsequent speech production and the actual speech execution phase could be differentiated. fNIRS results revealed a larger activation for overt rather than inner speech at bilateral prefrontal to parietal regions during the preparation and at bilateral temporal regions during the execution phase. EEG results showed a larger negativity for inner compared to overt speech between 200 and 500 ms during the preparation phase and between 300 and 500 ms during the execution phase. Findings of the preparation phase indicated that differences between inner and overt speech are not exclusively driven by specific linguistic and motor processes but also impacted by inhibitory mechanisms. Results of the execution phase suggest that inhibitory processes operate during phonological code retrieval and encoding.

6.
J Exp Child Psychol ; 193: 104790, 2020 05.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31991263

RESUMO

Positive associations between children's general language skills and emotion understanding are well documented. Concurrently, research from other domains highlights the importance of domain-specific language skills for conceptual development. The current study examined the relative contributions of emotion-specific and general vocabulary to individual differences in multiple early-acquired components of emotion understanding (e.g., facial emotion recognition) and later-acquired components (e.g., knowledge of emotion regulation strategies) in 4- to 9-year-old children (N = 86). Emotion-specific vocabulary was measured by size (i.e., number of emotion words children use) and depth (i.e., adult-like use of emotion words). Findings emphasize the role of children's emotion-specific vocabulary rather than general vocabulary for early-acquired and later-acquired components of emotion understanding, especially when measured by expressive tasks. At preschool age, the size of emotion-specific vocabulary explains children's knowledge of emotion regulation strategies. In primary school, however, the depth of emotion-specific vocabulary becomes relevant for individual differences in emotion understanding.


Assuntos
Desenvolvimento Infantil/fisiologia , Compreensão/fisiologia , Emoções/fisiologia , Vocabulário , Criança , Linguagem Infantil , Pré-Escolar , Feminino , Humanos , Desenvolvimento da Linguagem , Masculino
7.
Psychon Bull Rev ; 25(2): 696-703, 2018 04.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-29086158

RESUMO

How can apparent decision biases, such as the framing effect, be reduced? Intriguing findings within recent years indicate that foreign language settings reduce framing effects, which has been explained in terms of deeper cognitive processing. Because hard-to-read fonts have been argued to trigger deeper cognitive processing, so-called cognitive disfluency, we tested whether hard-to-read fonts reduce framing effects. We found no reliable evidence for an effect of hard-to-read fonts on four framing scenarios in a laboratory (final N = 158) and an online study (N = 271). However, in a preregistered online study with a rather large sample (N = 732), a hard-to-read font reduced the framing effect in the classic "Asian disease" scenario (in a one-sided test). This suggests that hard-read-fonts can modulate decision biases-albeit with rather small effect sizes. Overall, our findings stress the importance of large samples for the reliability and replicability of modulations of decision biases.


Assuntos
Comportamento de Escolha , Cognição , Leitura , Percepção Visual , Adulto , Tomada de Decisões , Feminino , Humanos , Idioma , Masculino , Pessoa de Meia-Idade , Reprodutibilidade dos Testes , Adulto Jovem
8.
Psych J ; 6(3): 205-218, 2017 Sep.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-28884968

RESUMO

The development of self-regulation is influenced by various child-level and family-level characteristics. Previous research focusing on the preschool period reported a female advantage in self-regulation and negative effects of various adverse features of the family environment on self-regulation. The present study aimed to investigate growth in self-regulation (i.e., executive functioning and behavioral self-regulation) over 1 school year during early elementary school and to explore the influences of child sex, the level of home chaos, and family educational resources on self-regulation. Participants were 263 German children (51% girls; mean age 8.59 years, SD = 0.56 years). Data were collected during the fall and spring of the school year. A computer-based standardized test battery was used to assess executive functioning. Caregiver ratings assessed children's behavioral self-regulation and information on the family's home environment (chaotic home environment and educational resources). Results suggest growth in elementary school children's executive functioning over the course of the school year. However, there were no significant changes in children's behavioral self-regulation between the beginning and the end of Grade 3. Sex differences in inhibitory control/cognitive flexibility and behavioral self-regulation were found, suggesting an advantage for girls. Educational resources in the family but not chaotic family environment were significantly related to self-regulation at both time-points. Children from families with more educational resources scored higher on self-regulation measures compared to their counterparts from less advantaged families. We did not find evidence for child-level or family-level characteristics predicting self-regulation growth over time. Findings add to the evidence of a gender gap in self-regulation skills, but suggest that it might not further widen towards the end of elementary school age. Adequate self-regulation skills should be fostered in both girls and boys. Results also add to the importance of supporting self-regulation development in children from disadvantaged family backgrounds early in life.


Assuntos
Função Executiva , Relações Familiares , Autocontrole , Cuidadores , Criança , Comportamento Infantil , Família , Feminino , Alemanha , Humanos , Masculino , Psicologia da Criança , Fatores Sexuais , Fatores Socioeconômicos , Estudantes
9.
Psych J ; 6(1): 29-42, 2017 Mar.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-28371551

RESUMO

The development of self-regulation is influenced by various child-level and family-level characteristics. Previous research focusing on the preschool period has reported a female advantage in self-regulation and negative effects of various adverse features of the family environment on self-regulation. The present study aimed to investigate growth in self-regulation (i.e., executive functioning and behavioral self-regulation) over 1 school year during early elementary school and to explore the influences of child sex, the level of home chaos, and family educational resources on self-regulation. Participants were 263 German children (51% boys; mean age 8.59 years, SD = 0.56 years). Data were collected during the fall and spring of the school year. A computer-based standardized test battery was used to assess executive functioning. Caregiver ratings assessed children's behavioral self-regulation and information on the family's home environment (chaotic home environment and educational resources). Results suggest growth in elementary school children's executive functioning over the course of the school year. However, there were no significant changes in children's behavioral self-regulation between the beginning and the end of Grade 3. Sex differences in executive functioning and behavioral self-regulation were found, suggesting an advantage for boys. Educational resources in the family but not chaotic family environment were significantly related to self-regulation at both time-points. Children from families with more educational resources scored higher on self-regulation measures compared to their counterparts from less advantaged families. We did not find evidence for child-level or family-level characteristics predicting self-regulation growth over time. Findings suggest that the male disadvantage in self-regulation documented in previous studies might be specific to characteristics of the sample and the context in which the data were collected. Adequate self-regulation skills should be fostered in both girls and boys. Results also add to the importance of supporting self-regulation development in children from disadvantaged family backgrounds early in life.


Assuntos
Comportamento Infantil/fisiologia , Função Executiva/fisiologia , Família/psicologia , Autocontrole/psicologia , Estudantes/psicologia , Criança , Feminino , Alemanha , Humanos , Masculino
10.
PLoS One ; 11(2): e0148787, 2016.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-26871902

RESUMO

Enabling learners to transfer knowledge about formal principles to new problems is a major aim of science and mathematics education, which, however, is notoriously difficult to reach. Previous research advocates different approaches of how to introduce principles to foster the transfer of knowledge about formal principles. One approach suggests teaching a generic formalism of the principles. Another approach suggests presenting (at least) two concrete cases instantiating the principle. A third approach suggests presenting a generic formalism accompanied by a case. As yet, though, empirical results regarding the transfer potential of these approaches are mixed and difficult to integrate as the three approaches have rarely been tested competitively. Furthermore, the approaches have been evaluated in relation to different control conditions, and they have been assessed using varying transfer measures. In the present experiment, we introduced undergraduates to the formal principles of propositional logic with the aim to systematically compare the transfer potential of the different approaches in relation to each other and to a common control condition by using various learning and transfer tasks. Results indicate that all approaches supported successful learning and transfer of the principles, but also caused systematic differences in the magnitude of transfer. Results indicate that the combination of a generic formalism with a case was surprisingly unsuccessful while learners who compared two cases outperformed the control condition. We discuss how the simultaneous assessment of the different approaches allows to more precisely capture the underlying learning mechanisms and to advance theory on how these mechanisms contribute to transfer performance.


Assuntos
Matemática/educação , Ciência/educação , Feminino , Humanos , Aprendizagem , Lógica , Masculino , Estudantes , Transferência de Experiência
11.
Cogn Sci ; 38(3): 514-36, 2014 Apr.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-23957504

RESUMO

Grammatical gender is independent of biological sex for the majority of animal names (e.g., any giraffe, be it male or female, is grammatically treated as feminine). However, there is apparent semantic motivation for grammatical gender classes, especially in mapping human terms to gender. This research investigated whether this motivation affects deductive inference in native German speakers. We compared German with Japanese speakers (a language without grammatical gender) when making inferences about sex-specific biological properties. We found that German speakers tended to erroneously draw inferences when the sex in the premise and grammatical gender of the target animal agreed. An over-generalization of the grammar-semantics mapping was found even when the sex of the target was explicitly indicated. However, these effects occurred only when gender-marking articles accompanied the nouns. These results suggest that German speakers project sex-specific biological properties onto gender-marking articles but not onto conceptual representations of animals per se.


Assuntos
Idioma , Fatores Sexuais , Animais , Feminino , Alemanha , Humanos , Japão , Masculino , Psicolinguística , Terminologia como Assunto
12.
Cogn Sci ; 36(7): 1251-67, 2012.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-22578067

RESUMO

In German, nouns are assigned to one of the three gender classes. For most animal names, however, the assignment is independent of the referent's biological sex. We examined whether German-speaking children understand this independence of grammar from semantics or whether they assume that grammatical gender is mapped onto biological sex when drawing inferences about sex-specific biological properties of animals. Two cross-linguistic studies comparing German-speaking and Japanese-speaking preschoolers were conducted. The results suggest that German-speaking children utilize grammatical gender as a cue for inferences about sex-specific properties of animals. Further, we found that Japanese- and German-speaking children recruit different resources when drawing inferences about sex-specific properties: Whereas Japanese children paralleled their pattern of inference about properties common to all animals, German children relied on the grammatical gender class of the animal. Implications of these findings for studying the relation between language and thought are discussed.


Assuntos
Relações Interpessoais , Psicolinguística/métodos , Semântica , Animais , Pré-Escolar , Comparação Transcultural , Sinais (Psicologia) , Etnopsicologia/métodos , Feminino , Alemanha/etnologia , Humanos , Japão/etnologia , Masculino , Testes Psicológicos , Tempo de Reação , Caracteres Sexuais , Medida da Produção da Fala , Suíça
13.
Front Psychol ; 2: 317, 2011.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-22073036

RESUMO

We examined the puzzling research findings that when extending novel nouns, preschoolers rely on shape similarity (rather than categorical relations) while in other task contexts (e.g., property induction) they rely on categorical relations. Taking into account research on children's word learning, categorization, and inductive inference we assume that preschoolers have both a shape-based and a category-based word extension strategy available and can switch between these two depending on which information is easily available. To this end, we tested preschoolers on two versions of a novel-noun label extension task. First, we paralleled the standard extension task commonly used by previous research. In this case, as expected, preschoolers predominantly selected same-shape items. Second, we supported preschoolers' retrieval of item-related information from memory by asking them simple questions about each item prior to the label extension task. Here, they switched to a category-based strategy, thus, predominantly selecting same-category items. Finally, we revealed that this shape-to-category shift is specific to the word learning context as we did not find it in a non-lexical classification task. These findings support our assumption that preschoolers' decision about word extension change in accordance with the availability of information (from task context or by memory retrieval). We conclude by suggesting that preschoolers' noun extensions can be conceptualized within the framework of heuristic decision-making. This provides an ecologically plausible processing account with respect to which information is selected and how this information is integrated to act as a guideline for decision-making when novel words have to be generalized.

14.
Brain Res ; 1410: 89-100, 2011 Sep 02.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-21803335

RESUMO

A recent ERP study on Chinese demonstrated dissociable neural responses to semantic integration processes at different levels of syntactic hierarchy (Zhou et al., 2010). However, it is unclear whether such findings are restricted to a non-case marked language that relies heavily on word order and semantic information for the construction of sentence representation. This study aimed to further investigate, in a case-marked language, how semantic processes in a hierarchical structure take place during sentence reading. We used German sentences with the structure "subject noun+verb+article/determiner+adjective+object noun+prepositional phrase", in which the object noun was constrained either at the lower level by the adjective or at the higher level by the verb, and manipulated the semantic congruency between the adjective and the object noun and/or between the verb and the object noun. EEGs were recorded while participants read sentences and judged for their semantic acceptability. Compared with correct sentences, a biphasic pattern of an N400 effect followed by a late positivity effect was observed on the object noun for sentences with either lower- or higher-level mismatch or with double mismatches. Both the N400 effect and the late positivity (P600) effect were larger for the double mismatch condition than for either of the single mismatch conditions. These findings demonstrate cross-language mechanisms for processing multiple semantic constraints at different levels of syntactic hierarchy during sentence comprehension.


Assuntos
Córtex Cerebral/fisiologia , Compreensão/fisiologia , Potenciais Evocados/fisiologia , Idioma , Adulto , Feminino , Humanos , Masculino , Psicolinguística , Leitura
15.
Cognition ; 118(1): 45-61, 2011 Jan.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-21074145

RESUMO

This paper explores the process through which children sort out the relations among verbs belonging to the same semantic domain. Using a set of Chinese verbs denoting a range of action events that are labeled by carrying or holding in English as a test case, we looked at how Chinese-speaking 3-, 5-, and 7-year-olds and adults apply 13 different verbs to a range of carrying/holding events. We asked how children learning Chinese originally divide and label the semantic space in this domain, how they discover the boundaries between different words, and how the meanings of verbs in the domain as a whole evolve toward the representations of adults. We also addressed the question of what factors make verb meaning acquisition easy or hard. Results showed that the pattern of children's verb use is largely different from that of adults and that it takes a long time for children to be able to use all verbs in this domain in the way adults do. We also found that children start to use broad-covering and frequent verbs the earliest, but use of these verbs tends to converge on adult use more slowly because children could not use these verbs as adults did until they had identified boundaries between these verbs and other near-synonyms with more specific meanings. This research highlights the importance of systematic investigation of words that belong to the same domain as a whole, examining how word meanings in a domain develop as parts of a connected system, instead of examining each word on its own: learning the meaning of a verb invites restructuring of the meanings of related, neighboring verbs.


Assuntos
Desenvolvimento da Linguagem , Aprendizagem , Semântica , Adulto , Criança , Pré-Escolar , Feminino , Humanos , Masculino
16.
Front Psychol ; 1: 194, 2010.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-21833253

RESUMO

This paper explores the effect of classifiers on young children's conceptual structures. For this purpose we studied Mandarin Chinese- and German-speaking 3- and 5-year-olds on non-lexical classification, novel-noun label extension, and inductive inference of novel properties. Some effect of the classifier system was found in Chinese children, but this effect was observed only in a non-lexical categorization task. In the label extension and property generalization tasks, children of the two language groups show strikingly similar behavior. The implications of the results for theories of the relation between language and thought as well as cultural influence on thought are discussed.

17.
J Exp Psychol Gen ; 136(3): 485-501, 2007 Aug.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-17696695

RESUMO

Whether and to what extent conceptual structure is universal is of great importance for understanding the nature of human concepts. Two major factors that might affect concepts are language and culture. The authors investigated whether these 2 factors affect concepts of everyday objects in any significant ways. Specifically, they tested (a) whether the system of grammatical categorization by classifiers influenced the conceptual structure of speakers of classifier languages, and (b) whether Westerners organized object concepts around taxonomic relations whereas Easterners organized them around thematic relations, as proposed by R. E. Nisbett (2003). The relative importance of 3 types of relations--taxonomic, thematic, and classifier--for Chinese and German speakers was tested using a range of tasks, including categorization, similarity judgment, property induction, and fast-speed word-picture matching. Some support for linguistic relativity as well as for the cultural-specific cognition proposal was found in some tasks, but these effects were miniscule compared with the importance of taxonomic and thematic relations for both language-culture groups. The authors conclude that the global structure of everyday object concepts is strikingly similar across different cultures and languages.


Assuntos
Formação de Conceito , Comparação Transcultural , Aprendizagem por Discriminação , Idioma , Reconhecimento Visual de Modelos , Semântica , Berlim , China , Comportamento de Escolha , Tomada de Decisões , Humanos , Resolução de Problemas , Tempo de Reação
18.
Psychon Bull Rev ; 11(4): 709-15, 2004 Aug.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-15581122

RESUMO

The goal of our study was to localize the source of the stronger Stroop interference effect found in morphosyllabic readers as compared with alphabetic readers. Twenty-three Chinese and 24 German undergraduate students were tested in a Stroop paradigm with the following stimuli: color patches, color-neutral words (e.g.,friend printed in yellow), incongruent color-associated words (e.g., blood printed in blue), and incongruent color words (e.g., yellow printed in blue). Results revealed no differences in German and Chinese students' response times to color patches. Chinese participants, however, showed longer color naming latencies for neutral words as well as for color words and color-related words. No differences between German and Chinese participants were found when print color latencies for neutral words were subtracted from print color latencies for color words and color-related words. This result does not support theories which suggest that for morphosyllabic readers there is a direct route from orthography to the semantics of a word. We rather argue, with reference to dual route models of reading, that access from print to phonology is faster for morphosyllabic than for alphabetic readers, and therefore interference caused by conflicting phonologies of color name and written word will be stronger in Chinese readers than in German readers.


Assuntos
Idioma , Leitura , Percepção de Cores , Fixação Ocular , Humanos , Linguística , Semântica , Vocabulário
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