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Neuronal activity to environmental sounds when presented together with semantically related words: An MMN study on monolingual and bilingual processing of homophones
Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics, General Linguistics.
2019 (English)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Neuronal activity of monolingual and bilinguals to environmental sounds and words that are semantically related to them were studied using the mismatch negativity (MMN) component of event-related potentials. MMN was expected to reflect the language selection process in bilinguals on the bases of semantics and phonology. In this regard, as lexical stimuli, interlingual homophones ‘car’ and ‘kar’ (snow) were presented together with semantically related environmental sounds in a passive auditory oddball paradigm. The lexical stimuli were recorded by a native English speaker. Three Turkish-English late bilinguals and one native English speaker participated in the study. An early MMN was elicited in both groups with a distribution over the fronto-central and central areas across the scalp with highest peak amplitude at -2.5 with a 113 ms latency. This response indicates that participants of the study were sensitive to the acoustic changes in two different types of stimuli. The further investigation of the interplay between environmental sounds and semantics displayed no conclusive result due to lack of data. Finally, the brain responses gathered from the bilinguals were not enough to draw a conclusion. Whether the bilinguals were sensitive to the sub-phonemic cues in the presented auditory lexical stimuli or not were inconclusive.

Abstract [sv]

Neuronal aktivitet av en- och tvåspråkiga till miljöljud och ord som är semantiskt relaterade till dem studerades med hjälp av Mismatch Negativity (MMN) komponent av event-relaterade potentialer. MMN förväntades spegla språkvalsprocessen i tvåspråkiga baserad på semantik och fonologi. I detta avseende presenterades interlingual-homofoner ’car’ (bil) och ’kar’ (snö) som lexikala stimuli tillsammans med semantiskt besläktade miljöljud i ett passivt auditivt oddball paradigm. De lexikala stimuli spelades in av en modersmålstalare av engelska. Tre turkiska-engelska sena tvåspråkiga och en modersmålstalare av engelska deltog i studien. En tidig MMN framkallades i båda grupperna med en fördelning över de främre central- och centrala områdena över skalp med amplitud vid -2,5 med 113 ms latens. Detta indikerar att deltagarna var sensitiva till de akustiska förändringarna mellan de två olika typerna av stimuli. Den vidare undersökningen av samspelet mellan miljöljud och semantik visade inget avgörande resultat. Dessutom, var det också ett inkonklusivt resultat som handlade om att huruvida tvåspråkiga deltagarna använde subfonemiska signalerna i de presenterade auditiva lexikala stimuli eller inte.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2019. , p. 23
Keywords [en]
Environmental sounds, interlingual homophones, mismatch negativity, event-related potentials
Keywords [sv]
Miljöljud, interlingual-homofoner, mismatch negativity, event-relaterade potentialer
National Category
General Language Studies and Linguistics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-170303OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-170303DiVA, id: diva2:1330523
Supervisors
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Available from: 2019-06-25 Created: 2019-06-25 Last updated: 2019-06-25Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
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