Edited by Eva Aguilar-Mediavilla, Lucía Buil-Legaz, Raúl López-Penadés, Victor A. Sanchez-Azanza and Daniel Adrover-Roig
[Not in series 223] 2019
► pp. 143–166
Verbs play an essential role in enabling sentences to be interpreted rapidly in real time. The objective of this work is to investigate how verb information is used during real-time comprehension of sentences in Spanish. Twenty-five children (aged 5.3–8.2 years) with specific language impairment (SLI), fifty typically developing children (aged 3.3–8.2 years), and thirty-one normal adults participated in three eye-tracking experiments involving spoken language comprehension. Participants listened to simple sentences in the presence of four depicted objects, only one of which satisfied the semantic restrictions of the verb. Eye movements revealed that children with SLI were able to recognize and retrieve the meaning of the verb rapidly enough to anticipate the upcoming semantically appropriate referent.
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