To understand the nature of language learning, the factors that influence
it, and the mechanisms that govern it, it is crucial to study the very
earliest stages of language learning. This volume provides a state-of-the
art overview of what we know about the cognitive and neurobiological
aspects of the adult capacity for language learning.
It brings together studies from several fields that examine learning from
multiple perspectives using various methods. The articles examine learning
after anything from a few minutes to months of language exposure; they
target the learning of both artificial and natural languages, involve both
explicit and implicit learning, and cover linguistic domains ranging from
phonology and semantics to morphosyntax. The findings will inform and
extend further studies of language learning in multiple disciplines.
Table of Contents
1. The Earliest Stages of Language Learning: Introduction (Peter Indefrey &
2. Adult Language Learning after Minimal Exposure to an Unknown Natural
Language (Marianne Gullberg, Leah Roberts, Christine Dimroth, Kim Veroude,
& Peter Indefrey).
3. Neurocognition of New Word Learning in the Native Tongue: Lessons from
the Ancient Farming Equipment Paradigm (Matti Laine & Riitta Salmelin).
4. A Complementary Systems Account of Word Learning in L1 and L2 (Shane
Lindsay & M. Gareth Gaskell).
5. The Role of Linguistic Input in the First Hours of Adult Language
Learning (Rebekah Rast).
6. Learned Attention Effects in Second Language Acquisition (L2A) of
Temporal Reference in Latin and Spanish: The First Hour and the Next Eight
Semesters (Nick C. Ellis & Nuria Sagarra).
7. Short-term Grammatical Plasticity in Adult Language Learners (Douglas J.
8. Brain Potentials Reveal Discrete Stages of L2 Grammatical Learnin
(Judith McLaughlin, Darren Tanner, Ilona Pitkänen, Cheryl Frenck-Mestre,
Kayo Inoue, Geoffrey Valentine, & Lee Osterhout).
9. Cognitive and Neural Mechanisms Sustaining Rule Learning from Speech
(Ruth de Diego-Balaguer & Diana Lopez-Barroso).
10. Artificial Language Learning in Adults and Children (Vasiliki Folia,
Julia Uddén, Meinou de Vries, Christian Forkstam, & Karl Magnus Petersson).
11. Initial Incidental Acquisition of Word Order Regularities: Is It Just
Sequence Learning? (John N. Williams).
12. Implicit Artificial Grammar, and Incidental Natural Second Language
Learning: How Comparable Are They? (Peter Robinson).