Poster E57, Monday, March 27, 2:30 – 4:30 pm, Pacific Concourse
Tones as predictors of suffixes in L2 processing
Anna Hed1, Andrea Schremm1, Merle Horne1, Mikael Roll1; 1Lund University
L1 speakers of Swedish use tones on stems to predict which suffix is to follow. This is indicated by the event related potential (ERP) component pre-activation negativity (PrAN) (Söderström et al., 2016). In addition to this, when hearing a suffix which is invalid in relation to the preceding tone, L1 speakers show a left anterior negativity (LAN) or broadly distributed negativity and a P600 effect (Söderström et al., in press; Roll, 2015; Roll et al., 2013; 2015). The present study investigated how L2 learners of Swedish process the tone-suffix association before and after training. Low to intermediate level L2 learners with non-tonal L1, to control for transfer effects, trained the tone-suffix association for two weeks, using a web-based game, the “Language Melody Game” (Schremm et al., in preparation). Before and after training, participants took part in a pre- and post-test, in which behavioral data and ERPs were collected. The perception test consisted of auditory stimuli with valid and invalid tone-suffix combinations. After training, the PrAN effect increased, indicating that the participants used the tones as predictors more extensively after training. A LAN was also found for invalid stimuli, indicating that they had acquired the tone-suffix association. However, no P600 was found, suggesting that the participants did not reprocess the ungrammaticality, and relied more on the suffix itself. This was also seen in response times in the post-test, where invalidity did not yield longer response times for judging suffix meaning, as it does for L1 speakers.
Topic Area: LANGUAGE: Development & aging