HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Human brain works heavy statistics learning language

A team at the University of Rochester has found that the human brain makes much more extensive use of highly complex statistics when learning a language than scientists ever realized. The research, appearing in a recent issue of Cognitive Psychology, shows that the human brain is wired to quickly grasp certain relationships between spoken sounds even though those relationships may be so complicated they're beyond our ability to consciously comprehend.

"We're starting to learn just how intuitively our minds are able to analyze amazingly complex information without our even being aware of it," says Elissa Newport, professor of brain and cognitive sciences at the University and lead author of the study. "There is a powerful correlation between what our brains are able to do and what language demands of us."

Newport and Richard Aslin, professor of brain and cognitive sciences, began by looking at how people are able to recognize the division between spoken words when spoken language is really a stream of unbroken syllables. They wanted to know how it is that we perceive breaks between spoken words, when in fact there are no pauses. This is why it often seems as if speakers of foreign languages are talking very quickly; we don't perceive pauses.

So how is a baby supposed to make out where one word begins and another ends? Newport and Aslin devised a test where babies and adults listened to snippets of a synthetic language: a few syllables arranged into nonsense words and played in random order for 20 minutes. During that time, the listeners were taking in information about the syllables, such as how often each occurred, and how often they occurred in relation to other syllables. For instance, in the real words "pretty baby," the syllable "pre" is followed by "ty," which happens more frequently in English than the syllable "ty" being followed by "ba"--thus the brain notes that "ty" is more likely to be associated with "pre" than with "ba," and so we h
'"/>

Contact: Jonathan Sherwood
jonathan.sherwood@rochester.edu
585-758-9510
University of Rochester
4-May-2004


Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Human chromosome 5 final sequence analysis released to public
2. Humans march to a faster genetic drummer than primates, UC Riverside research says
3. Applied Mathematical Models in Human Physiology
4. Human health risks in space flight focus of research internships
5. Human periodontal ligament stem cells isolated for the first time
6. Organization for Human Brain Mapping 2004 Annual Meeting
7. 20 May AAAS lecture: Computers that Respond to Human Emotion
8. New Woods Hole Center for Oceans and Human Health established
9. European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology conference - June 2004
10. Human genome-wide RNAi library for biotech and pharma research
11. Human genetic sampling

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
TAG: Human brain works heavy statistics learning language

(Date:10/17/2014)... news release is available in German . ... only a very few drugs. When treating overdoses, doctors are ... is especially difficult if there is a combination of drugs ... playing and accidentally swallows his grandmother,s pills? ETH professor Jean-Christophe ... wanted to find an answer to this question. "The task ...
(Date:10/16/2014)... William and Mary,s Virginia Institute of Marine Science ... Environmental Protection Agency to identify the streams and ... develop tools to help local governments and citizens ... critically on a dataset of tidal-marsh observations first ... with this historical baseline can today,s researchers accurately ...
(Date:10/16/2014)... Melbourne researchers have challenged conventional thinking on how the ... new mechanism for how bowel cancer starts. , The ... maintaining and regenerating the ,crypts, that are a feature ... are involved in bowel cancer development, a controversial finding ... existence. , Using 3D imaging technologies, Dr Chin Wee ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):Emergency aid for overdoses 2Emergency aid for overdoses 3EPA grant will help localities conserve headwater wetlands 2EPA grant will help localities conserve headwater wetlands 3Cryptic clues drive new theory of bowel cancer development 2
(Date:10/25/2014)... Angeles, California (PRWEB) October 23, 2014 ... ), a specialty pharmaceutical company devoted to bringing ... out-licensing partnerships in 2015. , ViaDerma has developed ... which allows for rapid mass transfer of pharmaceutical ... the body to provide immediate localized therapy. The ...
(Date:10/25/2014)... 24, 2014 This research report ... Starch Based Plastics, Regenerated Cellulose, PCL), by Application ... and Forecasts to 2019”, defines and segments the ... forecast of its global volume and value. , ... spread through 178 Slides and in-depth TOC on ...
(Date:10/25/2014)... Oramed Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQCM: ORMP) ... the development of oral drug delivery systems, announced today ... present at FireRock Capital,s Micro-Cap Conference. ... Tuesday, October 28, 2014 ,Time: 9:15am EST ,Location: The ... , About The FireRock Conference  ...
(Date:10/25/2014)... October 24, 2014 ... ) has announced the addition of the  ... And Other 2-D Nanomaterials "  report to ... , ,CNTs and graphene are the strongest, ... man, with a performance-per-weight greater than any ...
Breaking Biology Technology:ViaDerma, Inc. Announces Plans to Pursue Out-Licensing Partnerships in 2015 2ViaDerma, Inc. Announces Plans to Pursue Out-Licensing Partnerships in 2015 3Biodegradable Plastics Market Projected to $3,476.87 Million by 2019 - Report by MarketsandMarkets 2Biodegradable Plastics Market Projected to $3,476.87 Million by 2019 - Report by MarketsandMarkets 3Biodegradable Plastics Market Projected to $3,476.87 Million by 2019 - Report by MarketsandMarkets 4Oramed to Present at the FireRock Annual Micro-Cap Conference 2Oramed to Present at the FireRock Annual Micro-Cap Conference 3The Global Market for Carbon Nanotubes, Graphene and Other 2-D Nanomaterials 2The Global Market for Carbon Nanotubes, Graphene and Other 2-D Nanomaterials 3The Global Market for Carbon Nanotubes, Graphene and Other 2-D Nanomaterials 4
Cached News: