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Academic Paper


Title: Children's production of verb-phrase anaphora in a spoken task
Author: Morag L. Donaldson
Institution: University of Edinburgh
Author: Lynn S. M. Cooper
Institution: University of Edinburgh
Linguistic Field: Pragmatics; Semantics; Syntax
Abstract: To investigate the influence of semantic/pragmatic variables on children's production of verb-phrase anaphora (VPA), a spoken sentence completion task (e.g. John is throwing a ball and … Mary is too) was administered to four-, seven- and ten-year-olds. The frequency of VPA production was affected by whether the two clauses had the same or different polarity and by whether the actions were portrayed as simultaneous or sequential. These effects interacted in complex ways with age and with the presentation order of the polarity types. We speculate that developmental changes in the influence of semantic/pragmatic factors may be linked to increases with age in the strength of syntactic priming effects.

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This article appears IN Journal of Child Language Vol. 36, Issue 2, which you can READ on Cambridge's site or on LINGUIST .



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