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  • Adults have

    Probably up to 50 thousand words , hardly don't use that much

    what makes human language so special

    You can combine words to explain new things and meanings

    Humans learn syntax of language

    By exposure ... Brain seems to be hardwired to learn language

    Mental lexicon

    Contains semantic information. Also contains syntax information & information about word forms

    Semantic informafion

    The meaning of words

    Syntax information

    How words are combined to form meanings

    Word forms

    Autographic: what do words look like - depends on language
    Phonologic : sound of words - depends on sound

    Semantic network

    A concept of how mental lexicon is organized - words are connected by associated concepts - when one word is active associated words are active and so forth - "spreading activation"

    Semantic priming effect

    Evidence from experiment showing slower to respond if words are not associated but faster to respond if they are - rose : flower

    Semantic paraphasia

    Caused by damage to Wernekie, dementia : language disorders

    Someone with Wernekie aphasia

    Might say spoon when they mean to say fork- say closely related words by accident ?

    Category specific anomnia

    Anomnia: Inability to name things -

    Textbook theory on category specific anomia

    Concepts and the associated words for those concepts are stored in different areas of brains depending on the physical vs functional characteristics of that word or object (wainwright )

    Another theory of organization CARMAZZA

    Functional categorical organization

    Horses for example are associated with

    Object recognition areas : based on physical : Info temporal lobe occipital areas

    Information about hammers , functional tools

    Are stored in motor areas and tactile sensory areas

    People learn words in different ways

    Physically using the word (: Hammer) vs physical properties of the word (buildings)

    Damage of pole of temporal lobe

    Anomia to name people

    Damage to posterior of occipital lobe

    Anomia to name tools

    3rd theory of organization TYLER

    Features make up identifying animate vs inanimate objects , blade handle cut = knife

    Animate words is more common loss than inanimate

    TRUE : need more specific feature to identify animate things

    2 distinct process to understanding language

    1 Language comprehension: hearing voice to understanding , from reading to understand

    Language comprehension process

    Hear words or read them first .. Auditory and vision .. Then words go into mental lexicon .. Corresponding word(closest fit is found): then semantics are evaluated by concept in the sentence. (Concept is u have to extract the language and identify the words)(then words have to be understood in grammatical sense in context of the sentence)

    You can visually identify Words and search in lexicon

    Or you can sound out the word and use auditory and search lexicon through sounds ( 2 different pathways !!)

    Identifying reading words

    Sometimes we identify reading words by individual letters individually some times wholistically

    Identifying when somebody is speaking is complicated

    Different Voice pitches , accents (reference points), some words COARTICULATE (blend in when said together )

    Bottom up vs top down processing model

    Top down processing- what we know about language or experiences or what we expect somebody might be saying can influence spoken or written language

    Bottom up is the opposite which isn't the case

    Top down influence on speech comprehension

    Has limitations when you can't make out the sound , top down also lets us get around the segmentation problems (is 2 words or 3 words or 2 1word)

    What's going on in the brain when understanding spoken language

    Brain areas shown by fmri : left hemisphere laterized - language- primary auditory cortex is in tempral lobs (heschyls gyrus) - info spreads out to superior temporal gyrus and superior temporal sulcus (secondary auditory cortex) ---- these all process sound , other areas of the brain like prefrontal cortex process language semantics phonemes (basic components of sound )more so than acoustic sounds.

    Superior temporal sulcus(which is under the superior temporal gyrus)

    Is where you start seeing s brain region that treat language sounds differently -it doesn't know the difference between real words and fake pseudo words.- haven't identified the meaning yet

    Broccas area

    Understands complicated grammar in sentences . Very important for speech production

    Inferior temporal lobes and some other regions

    Understand the meanings

    By age 1 babies respond to only one language phonemes

    But you can learn more, we are wired to learn any language , as you grow up you loose this able to make distinctions of sounds in languages

    From studying ERP we learned timing and response of

    Semantics and syntax
    N400 response: negative deflection to ERP for semantic errors

    P600 response is from

    Syntax deviation, grammatical errors

    Do we see differences in n400(semantic)/n600 (syntax) response deficits in different people :

    People patients who have language and comprehension deficits ( low aphasias) you get abnormal responses : brain appears to recognize the word but timing is off. (Extreme and dull?) processing is not in sync

    Language production

    Starts with idea/concept then goes to lexicon to identify correctly select words to express. LEMMA(form of word to use before you say it run/ran) -- then have to code the word phonologically in order to speak and articulate - self monitoring system is like auto correct for speech : sometimes after before or during what u say

    Some types of aphasia

    Self monitoring system is what's the wrong part of their disfunction

    Evidence for serial processingis from

    EEG/EEP recording from Brocca area in brain from epilepsy patients . Showed there are 3 stages . Finding word. Finding phonetic. Then Speaking word

    More evidence for serial processing

    They can alter the size of the peak by altering the properties of a word. Size of word doesn't matter but property's do. Lexical selection , word identify. Eg work vs worked = changes in 2nd stage
    Last stage is phonological encoding = how to say words using syllables


    Language deficit that is not due to sensory or motor issues -

    Broccas Aphasia also called

    expressive aphasia -

    Aphasia can come from

    Strokes or aneurism

    Wernekie area

    Left hemisphere damage to the Posterior 3rd of superior temporal gyrus : damage can equal language deficits :

    Broccas aphasia : by

    Paul Brocca - the case of the lebornge 1861 - experiment showed damage was to inferior frontal lobe in left hemisphere : broccas area = we speak with our left hemisphere = yes specific functions do work in specific areas of brain

    Broccas area symptoms

    Non fluent or telegraphic speech (most common ones) --- dysarthria : difficulty controlling muscles involved in articulation --- comprehension is normal except for grammar (agrammertism: failure to comprehend meaning from grammar)


    Difficulty controlling muscles involved in articulation

    Broccas Area

    Pars triangularis + pars opercularis

    If Damage in broccas area is limited to the cortex

    People don't develop expressive aphasia !! Shows there are other areas involved

    Other areas implicated in expressive aphasia

    Left frontal lobe : insular cortex (insula) +underlying white matter basal ganglia = can cause expressive aphasia

    Wernekie area and broccas area connected by

    Arcuate fascicules .. Weneckie area sends the pathways

    Wernickies area damage can cause

    Receptive aphasia= werneckies aphasia = Comprehension deficit

    Wernickies aphasia symptons

    fluent speech
    - primary deficit is they can't comprehend the meaning of what is being said to them - incorrect word use - they cannot understand Semantic concepts and they don't know what they are saying (self monitor system)

    Semantic aphasia

    When you say something that's not even a word

    Distinction between werneckies and Broccas aphasia

    People with werneckies don't know they are making those mistakes - they think they are saying things fine.

    Werneckies aphasia patients are good at

    Picking up body language . Difficulty is comprehending spoken and written language

    If you don't speak the language of person with werneckies

    You wouldn't know they had that condition

    When damage is just to werneckies area and not the underlying structure during surgery they get

    Transient aphasia.... They can regain their comprehension abilities after swelling goes away

    Conduction aphasia

    Wernickies predicted this could occur before he saw it was discovered - caused by damage to acuate fascicules- allows us to monitor what we are saying - also can't repeat back what was said to them

    Strong relationship between comprehension

    And expression areas

    Broccas is also involved in comprehension of

    Grammar and syntax

    Language is complicated and is

    A huge network ! Involving many areas of the brain.

    Right hemisphere may be involved in

    Emotions which may be involved in grammer

    Tremendous amounts of individual variation

    Of language in people . Some people have different areas and hemispheres involved. Language is unique. All of our brains are different so this can make things difficult

    Patients can be awake during neurosurgery because

    They feel no pain

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