Planning and production of grammatical and lexical verbs in multi-word messages

Violaine Michel Lange, Maria Messerschmidt, Peter Harder, Hartwig Roman Siebner, Kasper Boye

12 Citationer (Scopus)


Grammatical words represent the part of grammar that can be most directly contrasted with the lexicon. Aphasiological studies, linguistic theories and psycholinguistic studies suggest that their processing is operated at different stages in speech production. Models of sentence production propose that at the formulation stage, lexical words are processed at the functional level while grammatical words are processed at a later positional level. In this study we consider proposals made by linguistic theories and psycholinguistic models to derive two predictions for the processing of grammatical words compared to lexical words. First, based on the assumption that grammatical words are less crucial for communication and therefore paid less attention to, it is predicted that they show shorter articulation times and/or higher error rates than lexical words. Second, based on the assumption that grammatical words differ from lexical words in being dependent on a lexical host, it is hypothesized that the retrieval of a grammatical word has to be put on hold until its lexical host is available, and it is predicted that this is reflected in longer reaction times (RTs) for grammatical compared to lexical words. We investigated these predictions by comparing fully homonymous sentences with only a difference in verb status (grammatical vs. lexical) elicited by a specific context. We measured RTs, duration and accuracy rate. No difference in duration was observed. Longer RTs and a lower accuracy rate for grammatical words were reported, successfully reflecting grammatical word properties as defined by linguistic theories and psycholinguistic models. Importantly, this study provides insight into the span of encoding and grammatical encoding processes in speech production.

TidsskriftP L o S One
Udgave nummer11
StatusUdgivet - 1 nov. 2017


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