L16LangAcq.6slides - Language Acquisition M a m a ! (8 m o...

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Language Acquisition “Mama!” (8 months) “Wash hair.” (1 year, 4 months) “Don’t tickle my tummy, Mommy!” (1 year, 11 months) “My Grandma gave me this dolly, Cara. My Grandma is my Mommy’s Mommy. I have another Grandma, too. She’s my Daddy’s Mommy. And Aunt Elli is my Daddy’s sister.” (2 years, 9 months) Lecture Outline Issues: (a) What must be learned? (b) How does it happen? 1. What must be learned – Without grammatical feedback, using universals 2. How does language development proceed? – Discriminating phonemes, motherese – Holophrastic stage, telegraphic stage, learning syntax – Learning word meanings – Critical period effects Language is Complex! Comprehend and generate millions of sentences – Effortlessly and fast – Most sentences completely novel Know > 100,000 words No other species does this, all normal humans do Bottom line: learning language is a big job Distinguishing Sounds Babies hear lots of sounds, only some of which are language – Traffic, dishwashers, vacuums, . .. First job in language acquisition: distinguish
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L16LangAcq.6slides - Language Acquisition M a m a ! (8 m o...

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