Referential ambiguity resolution in sentence comprehension

A developmental study measuring eye movements and pupil dilation

Nobuyuki Jincho, Hiroaki Oishi, Reiko Mazuka

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    1 Citation (Scopus)

    Abstract

    The present study investigated whether adults and 5-and 6-year-old children could incrementally resolve referential ambiguity of adjective-noun phrases in Japanese. Using a visual world paradigm, the experiment examined whether the proportion of participants' gaze on the referent and their pupil dilations were affected by the timing of disambiguation (pre-nominal adjective or noun). The results indicated that the proportion of the adults' gazes showed a reliable effect of the timing of disambiguation, but this was not found in the results from the children. The 6-year-olds' pupil dilation data showed larger pupil dilations in the adjective disambiguation condition than in the noun disambiguation condition. This suggests that the 6-year-olds also incrementally resolved the referential ambiguity. Furthermore, the adults showed a disambiguation effect, with larger dilations for the noun disambiguations than for the adjective disambiguations. No significant differences were observed in the data from the 5-year-olds. These results suggest that the 6-year-olds and the adults were able to resolve referential ambiguities incrementally, but that the 6-year-olds' eye movement control was not as fully developed as the adults'. In addition, the results suggested that pupil dilations could be a complementary measure of on-line sentence processing. That would be especially advantageous when experimental participants are young children.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)531-543
    Number of pages13
    JournalJapanese Journal of Educational Psychology
    Volume64
    Issue number4
    Publication statusPublished - 2016

    Fingerprint

    Pupil
    Eye Movements
    Dilatation
    pupil
    comprehension
    paradigm
    experiment

    Keywords

    • Eye movements
    • Language development
    • Pupillometry
    • Referential ambiguity
    • Visual world paradigm

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Education
    • Developmental and Educational Psychology

    Cite this

    Referential ambiguity resolution in sentence comprehension : A developmental study measuring eye movements and pupil dilation. / Jincho, Nobuyuki; Oishi, Hiroaki; Mazuka, Reiko.

    In: Japanese Journal of Educational Psychology, Vol. 64, No. 4, 2016, p. 531-543.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    @article{cc60b8965beb48499bbe135e12fdd8f2,
    title = "Referential ambiguity resolution in sentence comprehension: A developmental study measuring eye movements and pupil dilation",
    abstract = "The present study investigated whether adults and 5-and 6-year-old children could incrementally resolve referential ambiguity of adjective-noun phrases in Japanese. Using a visual world paradigm, the experiment examined whether the proportion of participants' gaze on the referent and their pupil dilations were affected by the timing of disambiguation (pre-nominal adjective or noun). The results indicated that the proportion of the adults' gazes showed a reliable effect of the timing of disambiguation, but this was not found in the results from the children. The 6-year-olds' pupil dilation data showed larger pupil dilations in the adjective disambiguation condition than in the noun disambiguation condition. This suggests that the 6-year-olds also incrementally resolved the referential ambiguity. Furthermore, the adults showed a disambiguation effect, with larger dilations for the noun disambiguations than for the adjective disambiguations. No significant differences were observed in the data from the 5-year-olds. These results suggest that the 6-year-olds and the adults were able to resolve referential ambiguities incrementally, but that the 6-year-olds' eye movement control was not as fully developed as the adults'. In addition, the results suggested that pupil dilations could be a complementary measure of on-line sentence processing. That would be especially advantageous when experimental participants are young children.",
    keywords = "Eye movements, Language development, Pupillometry, Referential ambiguity, Visual world paradigm",
    author = "Nobuyuki Jincho and Hiroaki Oishi and Reiko Mazuka",
    year = "2016",
    language = "English",
    volume = "64",
    pages = "531--543",
    journal = "Japanese Journal of Educational Psychology",
    issn = "0021-5015",
    publisher = "Japanese Association of Educational Psychology",
    number = "4",

    }

    TY - JOUR

    T1 - Referential ambiguity resolution in sentence comprehension

    T2 - A developmental study measuring eye movements and pupil dilation

    AU - Jincho, Nobuyuki

    AU - Oishi, Hiroaki

    AU - Mazuka, Reiko

    PY - 2016

    Y1 - 2016

    N2 - The present study investigated whether adults and 5-and 6-year-old children could incrementally resolve referential ambiguity of adjective-noun phrases in Japanese. Using a visual world paradigm, the experiment examined whether the proportion of participants' gaze on the referent and their pupil dilations were affected by the timing of disambiguation (pre-nominal adjective or noun). The results indicated that the proportion of the adults' gazes showed a reliable effect of the timing of disambiguation, but this was not found in the results from the children. The 6-year-olds' pupil dilation data showed larger pupil dilations in the adjective disambiguation condition than in the noun disambiguation condition. This suggests that the 6-year-olds also incrementally resolved the referential ambiguity. Furthermore, the adults showed a disambiguation effect, with larger dilations for the noun disambiguations than for the adjective disambiguations. No significant differences were observed in the data from the 5-year-olds. These results suggest that the 6-year-olds and the adults were able to resolve referential ambiguities incrementally, but that the 6-year-olds' eye movement control was not as fully developed as the adults'. In addition, the results suggested that pupil dilations could be a complementary measure of on-line sentence processing. That would be especially advantageous when experimental participants are young children.

    AB - The present study investigated whether adults and 5-and 6-year-old children could incrementally resolve referential ambiguity of adjective-noun phrases in Japanese. Using a visual world paradigm, the experiment examined whether the proportion of participants' gaze on the referent and their pupil dilations were affected by the timing of disambiguation (pre-nominal adjective or noun). The results indicated that the proportion of the adults' gazes showed a reliable effect of the timing of disambiguation, but this was not found in the results from the children. The 6-year-olds' pupil dilation data showed larger pupil dilations in the adjective disambiguation condition than in the noun disambiguation condition. This suggests that the 6-year-olds also incrementally resolved the referential ambiguity. Furthermore, the adults showed a disambiguation effect, with larger dilations for the noun disambiguations than for the adjective disambiguations. No significant differences were observed in the data from the 5-year-olds. These results suggest that the 6-year-olds and the adults were able to resolve referential ambiguities incrementally, but that the 6-year-olds' eye movement control was not as fully developed as the adults'. In addition, the results suggested that pupil dilations could be a complementary measure of on-line sentence processing. That would be especially advantageous when experimental participants are young children.

    KW - Eye movements

    KW - Language development

    KW - Pupillometry

    KW - Referential ambiguity

    KW - Visual world paradigm

    UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=85016447895&partnerID=8YFLogxK

    UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=85016447895&partnerID=8YFLogxK

    M3 - Article

    VL - 64

    SP - 531

    EP - 543

    JO - Japanese Journal of Educational Psychology

    JF - Japanese Journal of Educational Psychology

    SN - 0021-5015

    IS - 4

    ER -