You are here: Home Departments Neurobiology of Language

Neurobiology of Language -


New websites for our research group
Jul 19, 2013
The Neurobiology of Language department will frequently update you about our research, new publications, PhD defenses, new lab members, and ongoing discussions. more >
PhD project: Franziska Hartung
Jul 01, 2013
I am interested in simulation and language processing. During the last decade, research on semantic representation and language comprehension has shown that people simulate the semantic content of words they hear, for example parts of the sensory motor system can become active when people are presented with action words. more >
Top scientists sound the alarm for Max Planck Institute
Jun 27, 2013
The Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics in Nijmegen is internationally considered as the leading institute for research into the foundations of human language. Yet, the Dutch government intends to cut their regular financial support by 10 percent. Robbert Dijkgraaf, director of the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, Peter Hagoort, Willem Levelt (Emer.), directors of the MPI for Psycholinguistics and Gerard Meijer, President of the Executive Board of Radboud University Nijmegen, sound the alarm. Their letter (see below) was published in the Dutch newspaper NRC Handelsblad on June 25, 2013. more >
Thinking for speaking in early and late bilinguals
Jun 15, 2013
Do bilingual speakers of typologically different languages have multiple, perhaps conflicting, modes of thought, each corresponding to a particular language? more >
Study reveals how we understand what speakers mean
May 24, 2013
How do listeners understand someone's message, even if it is indirect and goes beyond the combined meaning of individual words? How do we work out what speakers really mean, a skill that is central for communication? Researchers of the MPI for Psycholinguistics and the Donders Institute for Brain, Cognition and Behaviour discovered that listeners take the speaker's perspective, both on cognitive and affective levels. Their paper was recently published online in the Oxford journal Cerebral Cortex. more >
Spatio-temporal metaphors and mental representations of time
May 01, 2013
Many cultures talk about time in terms of space. However, the particular ways that time is spatialized differ acoss languages. more >
PhD project: Flora Vanlangendonck
Apr 15, 2013
Speaking is something you typically do with other people. Yet, you don’t talk to everyone in the same way all the time. more >
PhD-project: David Peeters
Apr 01, 2013
One of the most important functions of language is that it allows us to refer to the things in the world around us. We continuously do so, for instance by using spatial demonstratives in combination with a perfectly timed manual pointing gesture (“look at that guy!”). more >
New post-doc: Diana Dimitrova
Mar 15, 2013
I am a postdoctoral researcher in the Neurobiology of Language Department (Donders Centre for Cognitive Neuroimaging) and in the Multilingualism Group (Centre for Language Studies). more >
Rapid interactions between lexical semantic and word form analysis during word recognition in context
Mar 01, 2013
During reading, people often actively predict what the next word is prior to seeing the word. How fast and at which level can the contextually driven anticipation influence the processing of the upcoming word? more >
PhD project: Jolien ten Velden
Feb 15, 2013
For most people speech feels like an effortless process. We think of what we want to say and the words flow out of our mouths. Our speech, however, is usually full of errors. more >
Embodied Cognition: Taking the next step
Feb 01, 2013
How does our body relate to language understanding? Embodied cognition argues that thinking is not confined to what happens in our heads, and that the body plays a crucial role in cognition. more >
Human Brain Project wins largest science funding in history
Jan 28, 2013
The European Commission has officially announced the selection of the Human Brain Project (HBP) as one of its two FET Flagship projects. The new project will federate European efforts to address one of the greatest challenges of modern science: understanding the human brain. Peter Hagoort, director of the MPI for Psycholinguistics and Donders Institute for Brain, Cognition and Behaviour, is among the scientists who contribute to the daring enterprise. more >
Less is not more: Neural responses to missing and superfluous accents in context
Jan 15, 2013
When speakers accent repeated instead of new focus information in context, listeners detect the mismatch immediately and experience semantic processing difficulties (N400). more >
The suppression of repetition enhancement
Jan 01, 2013
Repetition suppression is the reduction of neural responses to the repetition of stimulus features. Repetition suppression in the BOLD response as measured in fMRI studies is generally thought to underlie behavioral facilitation effects like priming. more >
Minister awards cheques for Gravity Programme 2012
Dec 20, 2012
On December 14, the Minister of Education, Culture and Science Jet Bussemaker distributed the cheques to representatives of the six consortia of excellence that were awarded funding for their Gravity Programme 2012. The award ceremony took place at the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO) in The Hague. more >
Implicit acquisition of grammars
Dec 15, 2012
A recent hypothesis in empirical brain research on language is that the fundamental difference between animal and human communication systems is captured by the distinction between what kind of sequences these different species can process. more >
more >
Self-monitoring in speech production
Dec 01, 2012
To prevent errors and choose the right words to say we must constantly monitor ourselves while we speak. Classic theories of monitoring have suggested that we monitor ourselves through our speech comprehension system. More recent accounts, however, suggest that we may be able to self-monitor via the detecting when two incompatible responses are simultaneously active. Dan Acheson, Peter Hagoort, and colleagues, address this issue in a paper published in Brain and Language. more >
Information processing gradient in the frontal lobes
Nov 15, 2012
In a recent paper in the Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society, Julia Uddén and Jörg Bahlmann suggest an information processing gradient in the frontal lobe. more >
27,6 million euros for Language in Interaction consortium
Nov 15, 2012
The MPI for Psycholinguistics, Radboud University Nijmegen (Donders Institute, Centre for Language Studies) and University of Amsterdam (Institute for Language, Logic and Computation) have been awarded funding of €27,6 million for their joint proposal for fundamental research on language from genetic building blocks all the way to social interaction. The Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO) has awarded consortia of world leading researchers in the Netherlands. These subsidies are intended to help ensure that first-rate proposals bear fruit as world-class research. more >
Peter Hagoort becomes member of Academia Europaea
Nov 15, 2012
Peter Hagoort, director of the MPI for Psycholinguistics and the Donders Institute for Brain, Cognition and Behaviour, has been invited by the Academia Europaea to become a member of the Academy of Europe. Hagoort's membership will officially start in September 2013, when the Academy meets in Poland. more >
Run first read later?
Nov 01, 2012
When we read, various meanings of a word are activated. Is the emotional meaning activated first, to ensure fast response for survival purpose? Or do we need to know what it is before we can evaluate the good or bad of it? more >
The neurobiology of conversation
Oct 15, 2012
In a review recently published in Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, Laura Menenti, Martin Pickering, and Simon Garrod review neural evidence for the interactive alignment account of dialogue. more >
Syntax is shared between speaking and listening
Oct 01, 2012
Do speaking and listening have a lot in common? Is there one integrated system for speaking and listening to sentences or are there two separate systems? In a recent paper, Segaert and colleagues focused on syntactic processing, a crucial aspect of both speaking and listing, necessary to determine the syntactic structure of a sentence. more >
Individual variation in semantic processing
Sep 15, 2012
It is well-known that, within ERP paradigms of sentence processing, semantically anomalous words elicit N400 effects. Less clear, however, is what happens after the N400. Miriam Kos and colleagues address this in a recent publication in Frontiers in Psychology. more >
Genetic effects on language processing
Sep 01, 2012
The genetic FOXP2-CNTNAP2 pathway has been shown to be involved in the language capacity. Miriam Kos and colleagues investigated whether a common variant of CNTNAP2 (rs7794745) is relevant for syntactic and semantic processing in the general population. more >
Neurobiology of Language

What is the neurobiological infrastructure for the uniquely human capacity for language? The focus of the Neurobiology of Language Department is on the study of language production, language comprehension, and language acquisition from a cognitive neuroscience perspective. Read more...

Director: Peter Hagoort

Secretary: Carolin Lorenz


Flag NL Het talige brein