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  Developmental changes in automatic rule-learning mechanisms across early childhood

Mueller, J. L., Friederici, A. D., & Männel, C. (2019). Developmental changes in automatic rule-learning mechanisms across early childhood. Developmental Science, 22(1): e12700. doi:10.1111/desc.12700.

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Item Permalink: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0001-4D55-A Version Permalink: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0003-90AE-6
Genre: Journal Article

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 Creators:
Mueller, Jutta L.1, 2, Author              
Friederici, Angela D.2, Author              
Männel, Claudia2, 3, 4, Author              
Affiliations:
1Institute of Cognitive Science, University of Osnabrück, Germany, ou_persistent22              
2Department Neuropsychology, MPI for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Max Planck Society, Leipzig, DE, ou_634551              
3Department Neurology, MPI for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Max Planck Society, Leipzig, DE, ou_634549              
4Clinic for Cognitive Neurology, University of Leipzig, Germany, ou_persistent22              

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 Abstract: Infants’ ability to learn complex linguistic regularities from early on has been revealed by electrophysiological studies indicating that 3‐month‐olds, but not adults, can automatically detect non‐adjacent dependencies between syllables. While different ERP responses in adults and infants suggest that both linguistic rule learning and its link to basic auditory processing undergo developmental changes, systematic investigations of the developmental trajectories are scarce. In the present study, we assessed 2‐ and 4‐year‐olds’ ERP indicators of pitch discrimination and linguistic rule learning in a syllable‐based oddball design. To test for the relation between auditory discrimination and rule learning, ERP responses to pitch changes were used as predictor for potential linguistic rule‐learning effects. Results revealed that 2‐year‐olds, but not 4‐year‐olds, showed ERP markers of rule learning. Although, 2‐year‐olds’ rule learning was not dependent on differences in pitch perception, 4‐year‐old children demonstrated a dependency, such that those children who showed more pronounced responses to pitch changes still showed an effect of rule learning. These results narrow down the developmental decline of the ability for automatic linguistic rule learning to the age between 2 and 4 years, and, moreover, point towards a strong modification of this change by auditory processes. At an age when the ability of automatic linguistic rule learning phases out, rule learning can still be observed in children with enhanced auditory responses. The observed interrelations are plausible causes for age‐of‐acquisition effects and inter‐individual differences in language learning.

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Language(s): eng - English
 Dates: 2018-05-092018-05-152018-06-272019-01
 Publication Status: Published in print
 Pages: -
 Publishing info: -
 Table of Contents: -
 Rev. Method: Peer
 Identifiers: DOI: 10.1111/desc.12700
PMID: 29949219
Other: Epub 2018
 Degree: -

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Project name : -
Grant ID : MU 3112/1‐2
Funding program : -
Funding organization : German Research Foundation (DFG)
Project name : Crossing the Borders: The Interplay of Language, Cognition, and the Brain in Early Human Development / FOR 2253
Grant ID : FR 519/20‐1
Funding program : -
Funding organization : German Research Foundation (DFG)
Project name : -
Grant ID : -
Funding program : -
Funding organization : Max Planck Society

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Title: Developmental Science
  Other : Dev. Sci.
Source Genre: Journal
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Publ. Info: Oxford, UK : Blackwell
Pages: - Volume / Issue: 22 (1) Sequence Number: e12700 Start / End Page: - Identifier: ISSN: 1363-755X
CoNE: /journals/resource/963018343339