Active prediction of syntactic information during sentence processing

Zeynep Ilkin, Patrick Sturt

Abstract


We describe an eye-tracking experiment that tested the effect of syntactic predictability on skipping rates during reading. We found that plural noun phrases were skipped more often than singular noun phrases, in syntactic contexts which induced a high expectation for a plural. We interpret this effect as evidence that the plural noun phrase has been predicted ahead of time. The results indicate that the examination of skipping rates might be a useful tool for the investigation of syntactic prediction effects.

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www.dialogue-and-discourse.orgISSN: 2152-9620   Journal doi: 10.5087/dad