Sentence-position effects on children's perception and production of English third person singular -s

Megha Sundara, Katherine Demuth, Patricia K. Kuhl

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

Purpose: Two-year-olds produce third person singular -s more accurately on verbs in sentence-final position as compared with verbs in sentence-medial position. This study was designed to determine whether these sentence-position effects can be explained by perceptual factors. Method: For this purpose, the authors compared 22- and 27-month-olds' perception and elicited production of third person singular -s in sentence-medial versus-final position. The authors assessed perception by measuring looking/listening times to a 1-screen display of a cartoon paired with a grammatical versus an ungrammatical sentence (e.g., She eats now vs. She eat now). Results: Children at both ages demonstrated sensitivity to the presence/absence of this inflectional morpheme in sentence-final, but not sentence-medial, position. Children were also more accurate at producing third person singular -s sentence finally, and production accuracy was predicted by vocabulary measures as well as by performance on the perception task. Conclusions: These results indicate that children's more accurate production of third person singular -s in sentence-final position cannot be explained by articulatory factors alone but that perceptual factors play an important role in accounting for early patterns of production. The findings also indicate that perception and production of inflectional morphemes may be more closely related than previously thought.

LanguageEnglish
Pages55-71
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research
Volume54
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2011

Fingerprint

human being
Cartoons
pattern of production
cartoon
Vocabulary
vocabulary
Person
performance
Eat
Inflectional Morphemes
Verbs
time

Cite this

@article{5ed66f25af744f36b3cc6622c80b51c5,
title = "Sentence-position effects on children's perception and production of English third person singular -s",
abstract = "Purpose: Two-year-olds produce third person singular -s more accurately on verbs in sentence-final position as compared with verbs in sentence-medial position. This study was designed to determine whether these sentence-position effects can be explained by perceptual factors. Method: For this purpose, the authors compared 22- and 27-month-olds' perception and elicited production of third person singular -s in sentence-medial versus-final position. The authors assessed perception by measuring looking/listening times to a 1-screen display of a cartoon paired with a grammatical versus an ungrammatical sentence (e.g., She eats now vs. She eat now). Results: Children at both ages demonstrated sensitivity to the presence/absence of this inflectional morpheme in sentence-final, but not sentence-medial, position. Children were also more accurate at producing third person singular -s sentence finally, and production accuracy was predicted by vocabulary measures as well as by performance on the perception task. Conclusions: These results indicate that children's more accurate production of third person singular -s in sentence-final position cannot be explained by articulatory factors alone but that perceptual factors play an important role in accounting for early patterns of production. The findings also indicate that perception and production of inflectional morphemes may be more closely related than previously thought.",
author = "Megha Sundara and Katherine Demuth and Kuhl, {Patricia K.}",
year = "2011",
month = "2",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1044/1092-4388(2010/10-0056)",
language = "English",
volume = "54",
pages = "55--71",
journal = "Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research",
issn = "1092-4388",
publisher = "American Speech-Language-Hearing Association",
number = "1",

}

Sentence-position effects on children's perception and production of English third person singular -s. / Sundara, Megha; Demuth, Katherine; Kuhl, Patricia K.

In: Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, Vol. 54, No. 1, 01.02.2011, p. 55-71.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

TY - JOUR

T1 - Sentence-position effects on children's perception and production of English third person singular -s

AU - Sundara, Megha

AU - Demuth, Katherine

AU - Kuhl, Patricia K.

PY - 2011/2/1

Y1 - 2011/2/1

N2 - Purpose: Two-year-olds produce third person singular -s more accurately on verbs in sentence-final position as compared with verbs in sentence-medial position. This study was designed to determine whether these sentence-position effects can be explained by perceptual factors. Method: For this purpose, the authors compared 22- and 27-month-olds' perception and elicited production of third person singular -s in sentence-medial versus-final position. The authors assessed perception by measuring looking/listening times to a 1-screen display of a cartoon paired with a grammatical versus an ungrammatical sentence (e.g., She eats now vs. She eat now). Results: Children at both ages demonstrated sensitivity to the presence/absence of this inflectional morpheme in sentence-final, but not sentence-medial, position. Children were also more accurate at producing third person singular -s sentence finally, and production accuracy was predicted by vocabulary measures as well as by performance on the perception task. Conclusions: These results indicate that children's more accurate production of third person singular -s in sentence-final position cannot be explained by articulatory factors alone but that perceptual factors play an important role in accounting for early patterns of production. The findings also indicate that perception and production of inflectional morphemes may be more closely related than previously thought.

AB - Purpose: Two-year-olds produce third person singular -s more accurately on verbs in sentence-final position as compared with verbs in sentence-medial position. This study was designed to determine whether these sentence-position effects can be explained by perceptual factors. Method: For this purpose, the authors compared 22- and 27-month-olds' perception and elicited production of third person singular -s in sentence-medial versus-final position. The authors assessed perception by measuring looking/listening times to a 1-screen display of a cartoon paired with a grammatical versus an ungrammatical sentence (e.g., She eats now vs. She eat now). Results: Children at both ages demonstrated sensitivity to the presence/absence of this inflectional morpheme in sentence-final, but not sentence-medial, position. Children were also more accurate at producing third person singular -s sentence finally, and production accuracy was predicted by vocabulary measures as well as by performance on the perception task. Conclusions: These results indicate that children's more accurate production of third person singular -s in sentence-final position cannot be explained by articulatory factors alone but that perceptual factors play an important role in accounting for early patterns of production. The findings also indicate that perception and production of inflectional morphemes may be more closely related than previously thought.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=79551703460&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1044/1092-4388(2010/10-0056)

DO - 10.1044/1092-4388(2010/10-0056)

M3 - Article

VL - 54

SP - 55

EP - 71

JO - Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research

T2 - Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research

JF - Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research

SN - 1092-4388

IS - 1

ER -