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Academic Paper

Title: The usability of syntax
Author: Sergey Avrutin
Email: click here TO access email
Institution: Universiteit Utrecht
Linguistic Field: Psycholinguistics; Syntax
Abstract: Clahsen and Felser's article (CF) is an important contribution to the field of psycholinguistics in several respects. First, it draws attention to the importance of a better understanding of the processing mechanisms utilized by child and adult language learners. Differences in these mechanisms may be responsible for the final outcome of the acquisition process. Second, the article provides an excellent summary of current first language (L1) and second language (L2) research on processing. A variety of studies, ranging from morphological off-line investigations to on-line research on syntactic development, are reviewed in a concise and accurate manner; the cross-linguistic dimension of the article makes both the review and the argument even more comprehensive and convincing. Third, based on their own experimental results, and the results from other studies, the authors propose a novel account of L2 processing, the so-called shallow syntax hypothesis (SSH).


This article appears IN Applied Psycholinguistics Vol. 27, Issue 1.

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