Age of acquisition and word frequency effects in picture naming: A dual-task investigation

Glyn Humphreys

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

38 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

In 2 experiments, the authors explored age of acquisition (AoA) and word frequency (WF) effects in picture naming using the psychological refractory period paradigm. In Experiment 1, participants named a picture and then, a short time later, categorized 1 of 3 possible auditory tones as high, medium, or low. Both AoA (Experiment 1A) and WF (Experiment 1B) effects propagated onto tone discrimination reaction times (RTs), with the effects of AoA being stronger. In Experiment 2, the to-be-named picture followed the auditory tone by a varying interval. As the interval decreased, picture naming RTs increased. The relationship between the interval and AoA (Experiment 2A) was reliably underadditive; AoA effects were eliminated at the shortest interval, In contrast, WF (Experiment 2B) was additive with the effects of the interval. These results demonstrate an empirical dissociation between AoA and WF effects. AoA affects processing stages that precede those that are sensitive to WF. The implications for theories of picture naming are discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)282-301
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition
Volume34
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2008

Keywords

  • age of acquisition
  • picture naming
  • psychological refractory period
  • frequency

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