Neurolinguistics is an old term for psycholinguistics.
In 18th century the relationship between language and human brain is
Neurolinguistics is the study of
neural mechanism in the human
brain that controls acquisition,
Production & comprehension.
Psycholinguistics is the branch of study which combines the
discipline of psychology and linguistics.
It is concerned with the relationship between human mind
and language as it examine the process that occur in brain
while producing and receiving both spoken and written
Important aspects of Psycholinguistics
Coinage of term.
As a separate branch of study.
Work on psycholinguistics.
Areas of Study.
• Chomsky posited humans possess a special innate ability
for language and that complex syntactic feature such as
recursion are hardwired in the brain.
All the humans have a ability to learn language.
LAD is fixed in human mind.
• Work on psycholinguistics starts as far as PLATO.
It become prominent in 19th century with linguistics.
Paul Broca , Charles Hockett and Willern Levelt are
important psycholinguist who did work on it.
• Willem Johannes Maria (Pim) Levelt (born 17 May 1938 in
Amsterdam) is a Dutch psycholinguist. He is an influential researcher
of human language acquisition and speech production. He
developed a comprehensive theory of the cognitive processes
involved in the act of speaking, including the significance of the
Pierre Paul Broca (28 June 1824 – 9 July 1880) was a French
physician, surgeon, anatomist, and anthropologist. He was
born in Sainte-Foy-la-Grande, Gironde. He is best known for
his research on Broca's area, a region of the frontal lobe.
• In the 1960s, linguistic anthropologist Charles F. Hockett
defined a set of features that characterize human language
and set it apart from animal communication. He called
these characteristics the design features of language.
2-First Language Acquisition
• The learning of a native or first language is called
first language acquisition.
• It’s also known as developmental
• It is just one stand of Psycholinguistic which is all about
how people to speak and the mental processes involved.
• Are we taught to speak by our parents? , or are we born
with knowledge in our brains that helps us to pick up
• So really, it’s a question of nature vs. nurture.
• Michael Tamasello:
• He believes that children
acquire language first and
foremost by understanding
how others use language.
• Noam Chomsky”
• He believes that we have
pre-wired structure in our
brains, which helps us to
have advance knowledge
about language, known as
• Children look for regular
patterns in speech and use
these as rules to work out
such as applying the past
tens: every word ending with
• Later Chomsky believe
that we are born with
“switches” in our brains.
• B. F. Skinner:
• Skinner research comes
under the term
may be familiar to the
His belief is that children
learn language through
their parents and other
sibling around them.
Two basic notions in first language acquisition.
• The extension of a rule beyond to its proper limits.
For Example: it is a frequent phenomenon in language
It can be found not only in syntactic usage nut also in
Moon= all round objects
cars= all vehicles
dogs= all for legged animals
• When a child uses a word in a more limited way than
adults do this phenomenon is known as
Shoes= only refers to his mother’s shoes.
Reasons for overgeneralization and
• On some Occasions: children’s conceptual categories
differ from adults
• On other occasions: they may know perfectly well that
a cow is not a dog, but not know what is called
• On still other Occasions: The children’s misuse of
words may reflects an attempt at humor.
3-Second Language Acquisition
• This is the Process by which people learn a Second
Language (L2). This research focuses on the
developing knowledge and use of a language by
children and adults who already know at least one
Theories of Second Language Learning
• Chomsky describes this theory as knowledge that people
are born with. Basically skill of language people already
have without being thought .
The point of this theory is to note the
differences between ‘acquisition’ and
Acquisition is hypothesized to occur in a
manner similar to first language acquisition,
learning is described as a conscious process,
one in which the learner’s attention is directed
to the rules and forms of the language.
It dominated psychology and education theories of second language
learning and teaching. Behaviourism was based on the view that all
learning including language learning occurs through a process of
imitation, practice, reinforcement and habit formation.
Cognitive psychologists hypothesized that second language
acquisition, like other learning, requires the learner’s attention and
Some theories suggested that language is fist acquired through
intentional learning of what is called ‘declarative knowledge’ and that
the declarative knowledge can become ‘procedural knowledge’
5- Integrationist Perspectives
This theory explains the ongoing use of language and
gestures in anticipation of how the other will react in
a conversation. It’s not only the speakers reactions
but also the listeners.
Instruction and Second Language Acquisition
Research shows that instruction can have a significant effect
on second language acquisition, at least in terms of the
rate of learning and the long-term success that learner
achieve in using the language accurately.
In the context of communicative interaction, learners seem to
be able to benefit more form instruction and error feedback
which focus on semantic or lexical errors than from that
which targets syntactic errors.
Second language acquisition is
influenced by the age of the
Children with solid literacy skills
in their own language, seem to
be in the best position to acquire
a new language efficiently.
Introverted or anxious learners
usually make slower progress,
particularly in the development
of oral skills. They are less likely
to take opportunities to speak.
will take risks, and thus will give
themselves much more practice.
Refers to motivation that comes from inside
an individual rather than from any external
or outside rewards, such as money or
Extrinsic motivation :
refers to motivation that comes from
outside an individual. The motivating
factors are external, or outside,
rewards such as money or grades.
These rewards provide satisfaction
and pleasure that the task itself may
In general, it seems that
students with greater cognitive
abilities will make the faster
progress. Some linguists believe
that there is a specific, innate
language learning ability that is
stronger in some students than
How much wood
would a woodchuck
chuck, if a
1-In both first and second language acquisition, there
are predictable stages, and particular structures are
acquired in a set order. Individuals may move more slowly
or quickly through these stages, but they cannot skip
2-In both first and second language acquisition, making
errors is a part of learning. For example, a learner may
start out using the correct form of an irregular verb as part
of a language chunk, but later over-generalize and place a
regular affix on that same verb.
3-In both first and second language acquisition, the learner
uses context clues, prior knowledge, and interaction to
4-And in both first and second language acquisition, Age is
an important variable affecting proficiency.
1-In first language acquisition, children spend several
years listening to language, babbling, and using
telegraphic speech before they can form sentences. But in
second language acquisition in older learners, learning is
more rapid and people are able to form sentences within a
shorter period of time.
2-In second language learning in older learners, learners
are able to use more metacognitive processes in their
learning. They can consciously analyze and manipulate
grammatical structures, and they can describe how
language works. This can speed the learning process.
3-In second language learning in older learners, learners
bring more life experience and background knowledge to
their learning. They have more schemata and more
learning strategies to help them learn the second language.
4-Almost everyone acquires a first language, but not
everyone acquires a second language. Acquiring a first
language happens naturally, while acquiring a second
language often requires conscious effort on the part of the
• It concerns with how people produce language in
his/her mind to convey their meanings that are
comprehensible to others either it is in written form or
• Basically it refers that how humans use words to
communicate ideas and feelings and how such
communication are understood.
• In simple wording it is how the brain creates and
Sub-Levels Of Speech Production
There are four sub-levels in speech production
This is what we wish to communicate.
People who are coming from different cultures
but using same language like (English).
We have to notice that how clearly do they say
and what they mean.
• A psycholinguist who gave a model in 1989
• CONCEPTUALIZATION ( what we wish to
• FORMULATION ( formulate the thoughts into
• ARTICULATION (execute the plan through the
biological speech system)
• SELF-MONITORING (monitor the speech whether it
is what we intend to say and how we intend to say)
David McNeil's Model
• An American psycholinguist who gave this model.
• He focus on speech first conceptualized in human mind.
• He claimed that syntactic thoughts and imagistic thoughts
collaborate to conceptualize conversation.
• SPEECH CONCEPTUALIZATION
• Syntactic thoughts
• Imagistic thoughts
• Person A:Where is my brief case?
• Person B:There’s your brief case.
• This is when person B point to the brief case the same
when he says:thers’s.
Insights of production process
There are three insights of production process:
1. It demonstrates that speakers are constantly self
2. It suggests that speakers are intuitively sensitive to
what stage of production process went awry, if indeed a
mistake was made.
3. There is a distinction between performance and
1. I think it costs just about…uh..twenty five dollars.
2. They have to try to…uh…contact an attorney.
Hostiations like those exemplified in (1)and (2) are not
mistake certainly not in the sense that the term has
been defined and illustrate here.
• Formulation is the
eventual output of
• Gestures plays a
functional role in
formulation of speech.
• Long term memory
resources are thought
to be necessary for
memory resources are
thought to necessary
This term is introduced by Dr.William
Spoonerisms are Speech error in which the initial letter or
letters of two or more words are switched.
8 major types of slips of the tongue
These errors appear at all levels phoneme,
morpheme & word level.
That’s so she'll be ready in case she
decide to hits it(decides to hits it).
Fancy getting your model
renosed(getting your nose
Bake my bike(take my bike)
He pulled a pantrum(tantrum)
I didn’t explain this clarefully
I’ll just get up & mutter
At slow speed it’s too light (heavy)
That’s child looking to be spaddled
Place of Articulation
• It is the place where
obstruction occurs in the
• It includes;
• The upper lip (Bilabial
• The upper teeth, either
on the edge of the teeth
or inner surface (Dental
• The alveolar ridge, the
gum line just behind the
Manner of Articulation
• The manner of
articulation is the
interaction of the
• It includes;
• The back of the alveolar
• The hard palate in the
roof of mouth.(Palatal
• The soft palate back on
the roof of the
• The epiglottis at the
entrance to the
Production process sometime goes away and
Speaker will verbally misstep, especially with regular
or more unusual form.
1. The last I knowed about it(I mean knew about it),it
had left Vancouver.
2. She was so drank(I mean drunk ),that we decided
to drive her home.
Mistakes are production problems, they that are
trouble you have with your linguistic printer , not
with the original software.
Errors are committed by non-native speaker.
3. I think it cost just…uh…about twenty five dollars.
4. They have …uh…to try to contact an attorney.
Just about, and have to function as linguistic units, so it
is improbable that the speaker would hesitate in the
middle of either one, after having already chosen to fill
the linguistic slot of the utterance with those phrases.
The attested presence of a self monitoring stage that
people don’t just communicate with themselves, they
don’t just listen to others, they listen to themselves.
Definition of Comprehension
• The word comprehension means understanding .
• Comprehension actually comes from Latin term.
• An ability to understand the meaning or impotence of
something [or knowledge acquire as a result.
• Comprehension is strongly influenced by even the slightest
of changes in discourse which the listener is attending to.
• In the course of every day conversation we don’t hear
vowels and consonant as isolated sounds
• The [p] is the following words is produced slightly different
the initial [p] of pool pronounced with puckered lips but the
same [p] in peel is spoken with the lip spread
• Despite all variations in [p] native speakers of English
almost never confuse any manifestation of the [p] sound
with [b] which is acoustically similar.
• Example these sound Benny and penny.
The main feature which English speakers attend to is the
[Voice onset Timing] [VOT] of initial consonant the most
significant difference English consonant like [b]and [p] is
the length of time.
Psycholinguistic have discovered that human are actually
born with the ability to focus in on VOT differences in the
The successful comprehension is a combination of the
innate ability to recognize fine distinctions between speech
and sounds which all human appear to possess along with
the ability all learner have to adjust their acoustic
categories to the parameters of the language .
The word comprehension means understanding. When
you lack comprehension of a difficult word, you will
likely need to look up its definition and usage in a cool,
down-to-earth online dictionary! Comprehension actually
comes from the Latin term, comprehension, which means
"a seizing. “
Representation of the Meaning of Words
• Reference Theory
• Prototype Theory
• Decomposition Theory
which equates a word’s meaning with what that
word refers to in the world
For example, the noun drawer is identified with a sliding box-shaped part
of a piece of furniture used for storage.
Assumes that a word’s meaning can be derived from a
bundle of features, no one of which is individually either necessary or
which holds that the Meaning of an utterance can be
derived if the latter is broken down into its component semantic
• Sentence comprehension is known as to be difficult for
orally trained individual with hearing impairment.
• Sentence comprehension has to deal with ambiguity in
spoken and written utterance e.g: lexical, structural and
have focused on fact that
continually creates novel,
representation of novel
messages, following the
constraints of a language
grammar and does so in a
some emphasized that
comprehension system is
senstive to a vast range of
grammatical, lexical and
Chomsky gave a model of sentence grammar structure of the basis of
which Psycholinguists first began to examine the comprehension of
In 1982 & 1992
Frazier, Rayner and
Pretchett (former theorists) have
constructed serial model that
describes that how a processor
quickly constructs one or more
representation of sentence based
on restricted range of information.
McDonald, Pearlmutter and
seidenberg have constructed
parallel model describing how
processor use all relevent
information to quickly evaluates
the full range of interpretations of
Here are some examples
• Tom is not going to your school.
• The man who ate at my house last night.
• Tommy is coming to your pool.
• Dog is chasing the cat.
• The cat is being chased by dog.