Journal article

An associative account of the development of word learning

Vladimir M Sloutsky, Hyungwook Yim, Xin Yao, Simon Dennis

Cognitive Psychology | ACADEMIC PRESS INC ELSEVIER SCIENCE | Published : 2017

Abstract

Word learning is a notoriously difficult induction problem because meaning is underdetermined by positive examples. How do children solve this problem? Some have argued that word learning is achieved by means of inference: young word learners rely on a number of assumptions that reduce the overall hypothesis space by favoring some meanings over others. However, these approaches have difficulty explaining how words are learned from conversations or text, without pointing or explicit instruction. In this research, we propose an associative mechanism that can account for such learning. In a series of experiments, 4-year-olds and adults were presented with sets of words that included a single no..

View full abstract

Grants

Awarded by National Institutes of Health


Awarded by EUNICE KENNEDY SHRIVER NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF CHILD HEALTH & HUMAN DEVELOPMENT


Funding Acknowledgements

This research is supported by the National Institutes of Health Grants R01HD078545 and P01HD080679 to Vladimir M. Sloutsky. We thank Chris Robinson, Anna Fisher, and members of the Cognitive Development Lab for helpful comments. Address correspondence to Vladimir M. Sloutsky (sloutsky.1@osu.edu), Department of Psychology, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH 43210.