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About this Lecture
In this lecture, we think about how children learn the rules of morphology that govern their native language, and how we can test for that understanding, focusing in particular on: (i) what we mean when we talk about morphology; (ii) the two types of morphology that one finds in languages – derivational morphology and inflectional morphology; (iii) the concept of ‘un-prefixation’ (i.e. the addition of an un- to the beginning of a verb to create a word with the opposite meaning, e.g. tie > untie); (iv) the ways in which children learn which verbs you can add un- to and which you can’t; (iv) telegraphic speech (e.g. *she play football), and two accounts of how the error arises; and (v) the tendency for children of a certain age to use the incorrect past tense for irregular verbs (e.g. *runned instead of ran), and two accounts of how the error arises.
In this course, Professor Ben Ambridge (University of Liverpool) explores childhood language acquisition. In the first lecture, we explore how children learn to distinguish the basic sounds (phonemes) that make up their mother tongue. In the second lecture, we think about how children learn new words. In the third lecture, we explore how children learn the rules of morphology and how we can test for that understanding. Next, we think about how children learn the rules of syntax. In the fifth and final lecture, we review a general timeline of child language acquisition from the middle of the second trimester to five years old.
Professor Ben Ambridge is Professor of Psychological Sciences at the University of Liverpool. His research focuses on children's first language acquisition, mostly using judgment and production methodologies. He is particularly interested in children's errors involving question formation (e.g., *What he doesn't like?) and verb argument structure overgeneralisation errors (e.g., *The joked giggled him; *I falled over). One of Professor Ambridge’s recent publications is ‘Syntactic representations contain semantic information: Evidence from Balinese passives’ (2022), and he is also the author of the popular science book Psy-Q, Are You Smarter than a Chimpanzee? (2014).
Cite this Lecture
Ambridge, B. (2021, January 05). Cognition and Development – Child Language Acquisition - Morphology [Video]. MASSOLIT. https://www.massolit.io/courses/child-language-acquisition/morphology
Ambridge, B. "Cognition and Development – Child Language Acquisition – Morphology." MASSOLIT, uploaded by MASSOLIT, 05 Jan 2021, https://www.massolit.io/courses/child-language-acquisition/morphology