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  1. 1. Psycholinguistics: the study of language processing Muzaffer Çetin
  2. 2. OUTLINE My aim: to summarize a number of methods and techniques psycho-linguists employ in order to learn more about the way language users process linguistic data: (a) the study of the slips of the tongue,(b) experimental methods involving lexical decisions and priming, experimental methods concerning sentence processing such as timed-reading and eye-movement experiments, and (c) the study of event-related potentials produced by the brain while processing language. A number of psycholinguistic findings concerning pronunciation, morphology, and syntax are reviewed. An outline of different psycholinguistic models of language such as those of serial and parallel processing comes at the end.
  3. 3. Psycholinguistics Definition
  4. 4. Methods of psycholinguistic research
  5. 5. Unconscious thoughts and feelings can transfer to the conscious mind in the form of parapraxes, popularly known as “Freudian slips” or slips of the tongue. We reveal what is really on our mind by saying something we didn’t mean to.
  6. 6. parapraxis, is an error in speech, memory, or physical action that is interpreted as occurring due to the interference of an unconscious ("dynamically repressed") subdued wish, conflict, or train of thought guided by the ego and the rules of correct behavior.
  7. 7. Freud believed that slips of the tongue provided an insight into the unconscious mind and that there were no accidents, every behavior (including slips of the tongue) was significant (i.e. all behavior is determined).
  8. 8. • Sigmund Freud started it as a therapy in which he let the patients/subjects to speak, and discovered that the root cause of their psychological disorders. • Psychoanalytical criticism studies the unintentional utterance of tongue as productions/representations of repressed desires. SLIPS OF TONGUE
  9. 9. • In a psychoanalytic sense Slips of tongue are the symbols which have much deeper personal significance. • But on the other hand he stated himself that not all the slips of tongue were all significant symbols of repression there can be other reasons too.
  10. 10. William A. Spooner (1844-1930), a famous lecturer at Oxford University to whom many slips of the tongue have been attributed. For this reason, slips of the tongue are sometimes called Spoonerisms. SPOONERISMS: is the transposition of initial consonants in a pair of words. Examples: (1) Intended: You have wasted the whole term Said: You have tasted the whole worm
  11. 11. • In Psycholinguistics Slips of Tongue are generally considered as Speech errors. • Slips of the tongue have been the object of PSYCHOLINGUISTICS research since 1960s. One of the most imprortant contributors is VICTORIA FROMKIN. • She contended that we switch initials consonants of words with a single clause.
  12. 12. Mystery behind slips of tongue • All these errors involve morphemes being exchanged within a sentence. A sentence must be planned out before speech begins. They also provide evidence that the morpheme- rather than the word-is the fundamental building block of English sentence production. (inflectional suffix s remains in its original place while the nouns “rule and word” in reverse positions
  13. 13. • This suggests that there is pre-planning of an utterance: speakers have a „mental image” of an utterance before they even start producing it. • Victoria Fromkin Said that: “Slips of the tongue are often the result of a sound being carried over from one word to the next” • Although the slips are mostly treated as errors of articulation, it has been suggested that they may result from ‘slips of the brain’ as it tries to organize linguistic messages.
  14. 14. • Slips of tongue occurs without any control over the speech Serendre Shutter in 2004 stated that: It is a complicated mental processing which is happening entirely below the level of consciousness, so we're not aware of doing anything except when we hear ourselves saying something funny, and its all happening at such lighting speed that we're not aware of any time these steps are taking.
  15. 15. TYPES OF SLIPS OF TONGUE • Tongue slips can be classified into two categories : the major category and the secondary category. • Smith (2003:1) identifies three levels of tongue slips, they are as follows:
  16. 16. WORD ERRORS Interchanges of Words MORPHEME ERRORS Interchanges of Morphemes SOUND ERRORS Interchanges of Sounds
  17. 17. • Two conditions increase the risk of making a so-called Freudian slip, Wegner says. One is the thought that you'd rather suppress. The other is a stressor, a distraction, time pressure, or a competing mental agenda.
  18. 18. 1. Methods of psycholinguistic research 3.Experimental Methods: sentence processing Parsing: analysis of the meanings of its words and syntactic structure. 3.1.Timed-reading experiments Longer press times for content words Pause at the end of clause boundaries 3.2.Eye movements Longer fixation times on less frequent words Regressive saccades
  19. 19. • Thank you for listening to me. • Muzaffer