Chapter 9 Language - L anguage A. Introduction - Made of...

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Language A. Introduction - Made of symbols and vocabulary - B. How do we acquire language? Theories (Read P.304-305) 1. B.F. Skinner Stimulus-Response, Reinforcement Theory - Positive Feedback – Shaping Language 2. Noam Chomsky - Inborn language device A) Too much language is acquired too fast - We are genetically driven/programmed to acquire language (Evolution: Language contributes to fitness, e.g. organized hunt) - There is no reinforcer (argument to Skinner’s) B) Unique sentences are produced - Never been taught C) We generate language in fixed developmental stages (6,10,12,24
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- 6 months old babbles exactly the same, contains the sound of every known language, babies’ place of birth cannot be distinguished by linguist - 8 months old, these sounds wear off and ability is gone. Linguist can identify what language - 24 months old, produce brief, 1-word sentences - Fixed developmental sequences indicate genetic influence D) Crucial and Sensitive Periods for Language - Learning indicate innateness of language potential - Sensitive periods indicate genetic influence - Age 8-12 no accent - After 12 slight accent linguist can distinguish - Critical period is before 12, Sensitive period is 8- before 12. - New language learning gets harder with age: (P.305) - Background: Korean, Chinese Immigrants over 10 years - Age ranged 3-39 - Pre-verbal children master grammar at 4-7 Results E) Research on Deaf Children - Acquire sign language in adulthood
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- Never master grammar for those signing for over 30 years: distinguish
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This note was uploaded on 08/18/2011 for the course PSY 301 taught by Professor Pennebaker during the Spring '07 term at University of Texas at Austin.

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Chapter 9 Language - L anguage A. Introduction - Made of...

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