Publications

Displaying 1 - 38 of 38
  • Yu, X. (2021). Foreign language learning in study-abroad and at-home contexts. PhD Thesis, Raboud University Nijmegen, Nijmegen.
  • Ameka, F. K. (1991). Ewe: Its grammatical constructions and illocutionary devices. PhD Thesis, Australian National University, Canberra.
  • Bentum, M. (2021). Listening with great expectations: A study of predictive natural speech processing. PhD Thesis, Radboud University Nijmegen, Nijmegen.
  • Cutler, A. (1975). Sentence stress and sentence comprehension. PhD Thesis, University of Texas, Austin.
  • Cutler, A., Aslin, R. N., Gervain, J., & Nespor, M. (Eds.). (2021). Special issue in honor of Jacques Mehler, Cognition's founding editor [Special Issue]. Cognition, 213.
  • Doherty, M., & Klein, W. (Eds.). (1991). Übersetzung [Special Issue]. Zeitschrift für Literaturwissenschaft und Linguistik, (84).
  • Essegbey, J. (1999). Inherent complement verbs revisited: Towards an understanding of argument structure in Ewe. PhD Thesis, Radboud University Nijmegen, Nijmegen. doi:10.17617/2.2057668.
  • Evans, N., Levinson, S. C., & Sterelny, K. (Eds.). (2021). Thematic issue on evolution of kinship systems [Special Issue]. Biological theory, 16.
  • Eviatar, Z., & Huettig, F. (Eds.). (2021). Literacy and writing systems [Special Issue]. Journal of Cultural Cognitive Science.
  • Felker, E. R. (2021). Learning second language speech perception in natural settings. PhD Thesis, Radboud University, Nijmegen.
  • Frances, C. (2021). Semantic richness, semantic context, and language learning. PhD Thesis, Universidad del País Vasco-Euskal Herriko Unibertsitatea, Donostia.

    Abstract

    As knowing a foreign language becomes a necessity in the modern world, a large portion of the population is faced with the challenge of learning a language in a classroom. This, in turn, presents a unique set of difficulties. Acquiring a language with limited and artificial exposure makes learning new information and vocabulary particularly difficult. The purpose of this thesis is to help us understand how we can compensate—at least partially—for these difficulties by presenting information in a way that aids learning. In particular, I focused on variables that affect semantic richness—meaning the amount and variability of information associated with a word. Some factors that affect semantic richness are intrinsic to the word and others pertain to that word’s relationship with other items and information. This latter group depends on the context around the to-be- learned items rather than the words themselves. These variables are easier to manipulate than intrinsic qualities, making them more accessible tools for teaching and understanding learning. I focused on two factors: emotionality of the surrounding semantic context and contextual diversity. Publication 1 (Frances, de Bruin, et al., 2020b) focused on content learning in a foreign language and whether the emotionality—positive or neutral—of the semantic context surrounding key information aided its learning. This built on prior research that showed a reduction in emotionality in a foreign language. Participants were taught information embedded in either positive or neutral semantic contexts in either their native or foreign language. When they were then tested on these embedded facts, participants’ performance decreased in the foreign language. But, more importantly, they remembered better the information from the positive than the neutral semantic contexts. In Publication 2 (Frances, de Bruin, et al., 2020a), I focused on how emotionality affected vocabulary learning. I taught participants the names of novel items described either in positive or neutral terms in either their native or foreign language. Participants were then asked to recall and recognize the object's name—when cued with its image. The effects of language varied with the difficulty of the task—appearing in recall but not recognition tasks. Most importantly, learning the words in a positive context improved learning, particularly of the association between the image of the object and its name. In Publication 3 (Frances, Martin, et al., 2020), I explored the effects of contextual diversity—namely, the number of texts a word appears in—on native and foreign language word learning. Participants read several texts that had novel pseudowords. The total number of encounters with the novel words was held constant, but they appeared in 1, 2, 4, or 8 texts in either their native or foreign language. Increasing contextual diversity—i.e., the number of texts a word appeared in—improved recall and recognition, as well as the ability to match the word with its meaning. Using a foreign language only affected performance when participants had to quickly identify the meaning of the word. Overall, I found that the tested contextual factors related to semantic richness—i.e., emotionality of the semantic context and contextual diversity—can be manipulated to improve learning in a foreign language. Using positive emotionality not only improved learning in the foreign language, but it did so to the same extent as in the native language. On a theoretical level, this suggests that the reduction in emotionality in a foreign language is not ubiquitous and might relate to the way in which that language as learned. The third article shows an experimental manipulation of contextual diversity and how this can affect learning of a lexical item, even if the amount of information known about the item is kept constant. As in the case of emotionality, the effects of contextual diversity were also the same between languages. Although deducing words from context is dependent on vocabulary size, this does not seem to hinder the benefits of contextual diversity in the foreign language. Finally, as a whole, the articles contained in this compendium provide evidence that some aspects of semantic richness can be manipulated contextually to improve learning and memory. In addition, the effects of these factors seem to be independent of language status—meaning, native or foreign—when learning new content. This suggests that learning in a foreign and a native language is not as different as I initially hypothesized, allowing us to take advantage of native language learning tools in the foreign language, as well.
  • Greenfield, M. D., Honing, H., Kotz, S. A., & Ravignani, A. (Eds.). (2021). Synchrony and rhythm interaction: From the brain to behavioural ecology [Special Issue]. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London, Series B: Biological Sciences, 376.
  • Huisman, J. L. A. (2021). Variation in form and meaning across the Japonic language family: With a focus on the Ryukyuan languages. PhD Thesis, Radboud University Nijmegen, Nijmegen.
  • Janssen, D. (1999). Producing past and plural inflections. PhD Thesis, Radboud University Nijmegen, Nijmegen. doi:10.17617/2.2057667.
  • Kaufeld, G. (2021). Investigating spoken language comprehension as perceptual inference. PhD Thesis, Radboud University Nijmegen, Nijmegen.
  • Klein, W., & Musan, R. (Eds.). (1999). Das deutsche Perfekt [Special Issue]. Zeitschrift für Literaturwissenschaft und Linguistik, (113).
  • Klein, W. (Ed.). (1985). Schriftlichkeit [Special Issue]. Zeitschrift für Literaturwissenschaft und Linguistik, (59).
  • Klein, W. (Ed.). (1989). Kindersprache [Special Issue]. Zeitschrift für Literaturwissenschaft und Linguistik, (73).
  • Klein, W. (Ed.). (1975). Sprache ausländischer Arbeiter [Special Issue]. Zeitschrift für Literaturwissenschaft und Linguistik, (18).
  • Klein, W. (Ed.). (1982). Zweitspracherwerb [Special Issue]. Zeitschrift für Literaturwissenschaft und Linguistik, (45).
  • Levshina, N., & Moran, S. (Eds.). (2021). Efficiency in human languages: Corpus evidence for universal principles [Special Issue]. Linguistics Vanguard, 7(s3).
  • Lopopolo, A. (2021). Properties, structures and operations: Studies on language processing in the brain using computational linguistics and naturalistic stimuli. PhD Thesis, Radboud University Nijmegen, Nijmegen.
  • Manhardt, F. (2021). A tale of two modalities. PhD Thesis, Radboud University Nijmegen, Nijmegen.
  • Margetts, A. (1999). Valence and transitivity in Saliba: An Oceanic language of Papua New Guinea. PhD Thesis, Radboud University Nijmegen, Nijmegen. doi:10.17617/2.2057646.
  • Mickan, A. (2021). What was that Spanish word again? Investigations into the cognitive mechanisms underlying foreign language attrition. PhD Thesis, Radboud University Nijmegen, Nijmegen.
  • Postema, M. (2021). Left-right asymmetry of the human brain: Associations with neurodevelopmental disorders and genetic factors. PhD Thesis, Radboud University Nijmegen, Nijmegen.
  • Redl, T. (2021). Masculine generic pronouns: Investigating the processing of an unintended gender cue. PhD Thesis, Radboud University Nijmegen, Nijmegen.
  • Schubotz, L. (2021). Effects of aging and cognitive abilities on multimodal language production and comprehension in context. PhD Thesis, Radboud University Nijmegen, Nijmegen.
  • Todorova, L. (2021). Language bias in visually driven decisions: Computational neurophysiological mechanisms. PhD Thesis, Radboud University Nijmegen, Nijmegen.
  • Trompenaars, T. (2021). Bringing stories to life: Animacy in narrative and processing. PhD Thesis, Radboud University Nijmegen, Nijmegen.
  • Tsoukala, C. (2021). Bilingual sentence production and code-switching: Neural network simulations. PhD Thesis, Radboud University Nijmegen, Nijmegen.
  • Van Dijk, C. N. (2021). Cross-linguistic influence during real-time sentence processing in bilingual children and adults. PhD Thesis, Raboud University Nijmegen, Nijmegen.
  • Van der Lugt, A. (1999). From speech to words. PhD Thesis, Radboud University Nijmegen, Nijmegen. doi:10.17617/2.2057645.
  • Van de Weijer, J. (1999). Language input for word discovery. PhD Thesis, Radboud University Nijmegen, Nijmegen. doi:10.17617/2.2057670.
  • Van Paridon, J. (2021). Speaking while listening: Language processing in speech shadowing and translation. PhD Thesis, Radboud University Nijmegen, Nijmegen.
  • van der Burght, C. L. (2021). The central contribution of prosody to sentence processing: Evidence from behavioural and neuroimaging studies. PhD Thesis, Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Leipzig.
  • Verhoef, E. (2021). Why do we change how we speak? Multivariate genetic analyses of language and related traits across development and disorder. PhD Thesis, Radboud University Nijmegen, Nijmegen.
  • Vernes, S. C., Janik, V. M., Fitch, W. T., & Slater, P. J. B. (Eds.). (2021). Vocal learning in animals and humans [Special Issue]. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London, Series B: Biological Sciences, 376.

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