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Preschoolers' comprehension of pronouns and reflexives: the impact of the task.
J Child Lang. 2012 Sep; 39(4):777-803.JC

Abstract

Pronouns seem to be acquired in an asymmetrical way, where children confuse the meaning of pronouns with reflexives up to the age of six, but not vice versa. Children's production of the same referential expressions is appropriate at the age of four. However, response-based tasks, the usual means to investigate child language comprehension, are very demanding given children's limited cognitive resources. Therefore, they might affect performance. To assess the impact of the task, we investigated learners of Dutch (three- and four-year-olds) using both eye-tracking, a non-demanding on-line method, and a typical response-based task. Eye-tracking results show an emerging ability to correctly comprehend pronouns at the age of four. A response-based task fails to indicate this ability across age groups, replicating results of earlier studies. Additionally, biases seem to influence the outcome of the response-based task. These results add new evidence to the ongoing debate of the asymmetrical acquisition of pronouns and reflexives and suggest that there is less of an asymmetry than previously assumed.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Faculty of Arts, Radboud University Nijmegen, the Netherlands. C.Bergmann@let.ru.nlNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info available

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

Language

eng

PubMed ID

21914243

Citation

Bergmann, Christina, et al. "Preschoolers' Comprehension of Pronouns and Reflexives: the Impact of the Task." Journal of Child Language, vol. 39, no. 4, 2012, pp. 777-803.
Bergmann C, Paulus M, Fikkert P. Preschoolers' comprehension of pronouns and reflexives: the impact of the task. J Child Lang. 2012;39(4):777-803.
Bergmann, C., Paulus, M., & Fikkert, P. (2012). Preschoolers' comprehension of pronouns and reflexives: the impact of the task. Journal of Child Language, 39(4), 777-803. https://doi.org/10.1017/S0305000911000298
Bergmann C, Paulus M, Fikkert P. Preschoolers' Comprehension of Pronouns and Reflexives: the Impact of the Task. J Child Lang. 2012;39(4):777-803. PubMed PMID: 21914243.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Preschoolers' comprehension of pronouns and reflexives: the impact of the task. AU - Bergmann,Christina, AU - Paulus,Markus, AU - Fikkert,Paula, Y1 - 2011/09/14/ PY - 2011/9/15/entrez PY - 2011/9/15/pubmed PY - 2013/1/29/medline SP - 777 EP - 803 JF - Journal of child language JO - J Child Lang VL - 39 IS - 4 N2 - Pronouns seem to be acquired in an asymmetrical way, where children confuse the meaning of pronouns with reflexives up to the age of six, but not vice versa. Children's production of the same referential expressions is appropriate at the age of four. However, response-based tasks, the usual means to investigate child language comprehension, are very demanding given children's limited cognitive resources. Therefore, they might affect performance. To assess the impact of the task, we investigated learners of Dutch (three- and four-year-olds) using both eye-tracking, a non-demanding on-line method, and a typical response-based task. Eye-tracking results show an emerging ability to correctly comprehend pronouns at the age of four. A response-based task fails to indicate this ability across age groups, replicating results of earlier studies. Additionally, biases seem to influence the outcome of the response-based task. These results add new evidence to the ongoing debate of the asymmetrical acquisition of pronouns and reflexives and suggest that there is less of an asymmetry than previously assumed. SN - 1469-7602 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/21914243/Preschoolers'_comprehension_of_pronouns_and_reflexives:_the_impact_of_the_task_ L2 - https://www.cambridge.org/core/product/identifier/S0305000911000298/type/journal_article DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -