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Proccesing phonological information while learning and recognizing words

Consonants have been proposed to have more weight than vowels at the level of lexical processing. We found that the C-bias is present in French from 8 months to adulthood, in many lexically-related processes. Importantly though, a reversed bias (V-bias) was found in younger French-learning infants (5- and 6-month-olds), demonstrating that the bias needs to be acquired during development. This conclusion is further supported by our crosslinguistic studies showing that the bias emerges much later in English (between 24 and 30 months), and is reversed in Danish (V-bias at 20 months). Given the timing of acquisition observed in French, we have proposed that this C-bias emerges in relation to early phonological and (proto)lexical acquisition, a proposal we are currently testing.

Project team lead
Thierry Nazzi

Project supported by