Electrophysiological evidence for a neural substrate of morphological rule application in correct wordforms

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Colleges, School and Institutes

Abstract

A critical issue for understanding language processing in the brain is whether linguistic rule application is subserved by a distinct neural substrate. One of the evidence supporting this hypothesis stems from studies employing electroencephalographic measurements during the processing of rule misapplication. This evidence is inconclusive because it might reflect processes caused by the violation such as error handling rather than application of rules per se. Here we provide first evidence that correct regular formations, i.e., German past participles, are associated with left anterior negative-going activity (LAN) providing encephalographic evidence for rule application in the brain during the processing of correct words. Moreover, a LAN response is present regardless of the participles' frequency, suggesting that independently from the mode of lexical access (i.e., decomposition or full-form activation), the cerebral structures associated with rule-based mechanisms are activated.

Bibliographic note

Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Details

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)70-83
Number of pages14
JournalBrain Research
Volume1496
Publication statusPublished - 16 Feb 2013

Keywords

  • Cognitive and behavioral neuroscience, Event-related potentials, Left anterior negativity, Grammatical rule application, Morphology, Inflection, German participles