Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
Previous research has shown that neural responses to words during sentence comprehension are sensitive to both lexical repetition and a word’s predictability in context. While previous research has often contrasted the effects of these variables (e.g. by looking at cases in which word repetition violates sentence-level constraints), little is known about how they work in tandem. In the current study we examine how recent exposure to a word and its predictability in context combine to impact lexical semantic processing. We devise a novel paradigm that combines reading comprehension with a recognition memory task, allowing for an orthogonal manipulation of a word’s predictability and its repetition status. Using event-related brain potentials (ERPs), we show that word repetition and predictability have qualitatively similar and additive effects on the N400 amplitude. We propose that prior exposure to a word and predictability impact lexical semantic processing in an additive and independent fashion.
Chow, Wing-Yee; Lago, Sol; Barrios, Shannon; Parker, Daniel; and al., et, Additive Effects of Repetition and Predictability During Comprehension: Evidence from Event-Related Potentials (2014). PLOS ONE, 9(6).