Psych 105-ucsb-fall-2011-lecture4-ch5_Language_I

Psych 105-ucsb-fall-2011-lecture4-ch5_Language_I - Lecture...

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1 Lecture 5: Language development part I Characteristics of language Generative and creative Infinite numbers of thoughts can be expressed by combining a finite number of elements via a set of hierarchical rules Flexibility comes at the price of complexity Early theories favored ‘blank slate’ learning: B.F. Skinner (Verbal Behavior ) Blank slate (+ learning mechanism of “association”) Word-like babbling reinforced…babbling becomes words… words reinforced… words become sentences etc. Gradual shaping of response. Reward primitive sentences, then more elaborate sentences, etc… More modern learning Theories Modern versions where the starting slate has a more elaborated set of general learning processes: Imitation of adult speakers Memorization of words and then sentences Such that no ‘explicit reinforcement’ is necessary. Evidence Against the “blank slate” and its elaborated versions… But still… too many things to say! Novel utterances (never overheard,
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Psych 105-ucsb-fall-2011-lecture4-ch5_Language_I - Lecture...

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