2015-07-02Zeitschriftenartikel DOI: 10.18452/23889
Interplay of bigram frequency and orthographic neighborhood statistics in language membership decision
Sprach- und literaturwissenschaftliche Fakultät
Language-specific orthography (i.e., letters or bigrams that exist in only one language) is known to facilitate language membership recognition. Yet the contribution of continuous sublexical and lexical statistics to language membership decisions during visual word processing is unknown. Here, we used pseudo-words to investigate whether continuous sublexical and lexical statistics bias explicit language decisions (Experiment 1) and language attribution during naming (Experiment 2). We also asked whether continuous statistics would have an effect in the presence of orthographic markers. Language attribution in both experiments was influenced by lexical neighborhood size differences between languages, even in presence of orthographic markers. Sublexical frequencies of occurrence affected reaction times only for unmarked pseudo-words in both experiments, with greater effects in naming. Our results indicate that bilinguals rely on continuous language-specific statistics at sublexical and lexical levels to infer language membership. Implications are discussed with respect to models of bilingual visual word recognition.
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This publication is with permission of the rights owner freely accessible due to an Alliance licence and a national licence (funded by the DFG, German Research Foundation) respectively.