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Psychology 108 Final Review

Psychology 108 Final Review - Psychology 108 Final Review...

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Psychology 108 Final Review Week 6 and 7 Language Lecture: February 11 o Language is universal, we are biologically prepared to have language in our brains. We can’t help but have language, we are all born into a community o Window of the mind, tells us what we are thinking, source of communication, a way to express the mind o There is great similarity across language. For example, while the human voice mechanism is capable of producing an extraodinary array of sounds, there are only 4 dozen or so that comprise the entire human speech within a language. We can naturally handle about 48 distinct sounds. o There is an age-related effect of competency. If you learn a second language after the age of 14, the likelihood of being detected as not being a native speaker is about 80%. This is because the speech mechanisms of the brain are flexible until the age of puberty and then seem to become progressively less flexible. This is paralelled by the difficulty of mastering the grammar of a second after the age of 14. o Syntactic arrangements-6 possible arrangments of subject, verb, objects. Out of the six possible orders of the three terms, only three have been truly observed in a sample of 200 languages. (English, French, Hebrew uses SVO) o Wild children:what we would be like if we didn’t live in cities. o Williams Syndrome: first identified by doctor in New Zealand. His patients had cardiovascular issues, realized they all looked simliar. Began to study them. Profound disabilities but equally profound music abilities. “Talk show host” personalities. Fluency in language, however they can’t draw a circle. Low spatial skill, they have great communication skills. Look young, have young feature/low IQs. o Williams Syndrome patients have good language skills for how low their IQs are, shows that you don’t need to have a high IQ to have good language skills. o Language is unique to humans. Humans are the only creatures that have true, natural languages. Language is the quintessential human activity. o Language is present independent of the intelligence (largely independent of IQ) of the speaker and independent of the enviornment in which the speaker is raised.
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o Language seems to unfold at about th same rate for people all over the world. o Purpose of language is to communicate meaning o Non-humans Signals: growls, warning cries Signs: bee dance, signs for something else Signaling systems: meaning conveyed cannot be about the message. (gee wasn’t that a great growl that I just uttered) o Humans Signals: receptivity, clearing your throat Signs: words o Language : a communication system that has 4 properties o 1. Message: semantics, a system of communicating meaning. Where elements of the language can be translated into meaning.
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