A structurally simple language that arises when people who share no common language come into contact.
A language that once was a pidgin but which subsequently became a native language for some speakers; "creolization" is a process that creates new languages.
Language bioprogram hypothesis
Proposed by the linguist Derek Bickerton, who has argued that humans are endowed with an innate skeletal or "core" grammar that constitutes "part or all, of the human species-specific capacity for syntax".
Supralaryngeal vocal tract
The vocal tract located above the larynx that is responsible for the production of speech sounds.
How the brain is organized to do what the brain does.
The study of the relation of the brain to language functioning.
The outer layer of the brain that controls higher mental functions such as reasoning and planning
A structure of the brain beneath the cerebral cortex that controls more primitive functions, such as eating and breathing.
A band of nerve fibers that connects the right and left hemispheres of the brain.
A feature of the human nervous system in which the primary connections from the brain to the body extend from each hemisphere of the brain to the opposite side of the body
The nervous system connections between each hemisphere of the brain and the same side of the body. The primary connections in the nervous system are contralateral.
Interconnected neurons that fire together when presented with a particular stimulus or when accomplishing a particular task.
The method of investigating the functions performed by different areas of the brain by correlating impaired function with the location of damage to the brain.
A patient who has had his or her corpus callosum severed (usually to relieve epileptic seizures) but an otherwise undamaged brain
Dichotic listening tasks
An experimental procedure in which two auditory stimuli are presented simultaneously (one to each ear). The purpose is to infer which cerebral hemisphere is responsible for processing the stimuli on the basis of which stimulus the listener perceives.
Event-related brain potentials (ERPs)
A measure of brain activity. Electrodes placed on the scalp record voltage fluctuations in the brain as the individual perceives or responds to presented stimuli. These voltage fluctuations are electrical potentials associated with the experimenter-controlled events, and the location of the potentials is taken as evidence of where in the brain the processing of that event occurred.
Any of several techniques that show the relative levels of activity of different parts of the brain during performance of a particular task. Positron emission tomography (PET) scans, functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), and optical topography are examples.
Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI)
A less invasive brain-imaging technique that does not require the administration of a radioactive substance and can provide images of activity in the brain that result from patterns of blood flow and oxygen consumption.
Near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS)
A method of brain imaging, also known as optical topography, that measures activity in different regions of the brain by using the degree to which light passes between points on the scalp as an indicator of blood oxygenation and thus neural activity.
The condition in which language functions are severely impaired.
The state of affairs, in which one hemisphere is more important than the other for particular competencies.
The relatively greater probability that stimuli presented to the right ear in a dichotic listening test will be perceived by the listener. Typically, there is a right-ear advantage for linguistic stimuli, which suggests that the left cerebral hemisphere is primarily responsible for processing linguistic stimuli.
The condition in which the ability to produce speech is severely impaired because of brain damage.
The condition in which patients speak rapidly and fluently but without meaning as a result of damage to part of the left hemisphere of the brain.
An area in the front portion of the left temporal lobe of the brain that is involved in language functioning
An area in the left hemisphere of the brain, located next to the primary auditory cortex, that is responsible for language functions.
The hypothesis that, at birth, both hemispheres of the brain have equal potential for acquiring language.
The theory that holds that the left hemisphere of the brain has the adult specialization for language from birth.
The ability of parts of the brain to take over functions they ordinarily would not serve. There is much more plasticity in the child's brain than in the adult's.
Critical period hypothesis
The notion that a biologically determined period exists during which language acquisition must occur, if it is to occur at all.
A term sometimes used instead of critical period to indicate the ability to acquire language may be greatest during a particular period of development but that later language acquisition is not impossible.
Dominant language switch hypothesis
The hypothesis that children tend to learn a second language more completely than adults do because children, more than adults, tend to switch to the second language as their dominant language and use it more.
"Less is more" hypothesis
The hypothesis (proposed by Newport) that children's smaller short-term memory span (compared with that of adults) facilities language acquisition by giving children smaller chunks of language to analyze.
The idea that we can learn about aspects of human psychology and human development by considering their evolutionary origins.
A characteristics that an organism possesses because the forces of natural selection operating during that organism's evolution made that particular characteristic advantageous. It has been proposed that the capacity for language is an adaptation that humans have because the ability to communicate gave human a survival advantage.
Descent with modification
The principle of evolution according to which current characteristics of species came into being through the gradual modification of earlier characteristics.
Want to see the other 37 Flashcards in Chapter 2?JOIN TODAY FOR FREE!