The nature of working memory operation during the comprehension of unambiguous, complex sentences Public Deposited

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  • March 22, 2019
  • Johnson, Marcus
    • Affiliation: College of Arts and Sciences, Department of Psychology and Neuroscience
  • The current studies, using eye-tracking methodology, sought to investigate the notion that processing difficulty may occur when reading sentences in which two or more noun phrases are encountered before they are integrated with verbs. This difficulty may be alleviated if the noun phrases are sufficiently dissimilar. Relative clauses (RC) and clefts, which can present readers with two or more noun phrases before the verbs which integrate them into the rest of sentence, were used to test this notion. Evidence for increased processing difficulty was found in Experiments 1 and 2 when two similar, but not dissimilar noun phrases were encountered before any verbs. Additionally, Experiment 3 utilized concurrent load methodology to test the possibility that the working memory responsible for language comprehension is modularized from general working memory. Experiment 3 provided evidence in support of similarity-based working memory and in opposition to the notion of modularized language comprehension working memory.
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  • Gordon, Peter
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  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
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