Investigations in Universal Grammar
A Guide to Experiments on the Acquisition of Syntax and Semantics
Stephen Crain & Rosalind Thornton 2000
E-Book: 342 English Pages
Publisher: MIT Press
Price: 1000 Toman
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This introductory guide to language acquisition research is presented within the framework of Universal Grammar, a theory of the human faculty for language. The authors focus on two experimental techniques for assessing children’s linguistic competence: the Elicited Production task, a production task, and the Truth Value Judgment task, a comprehension task. Their methodologies are designed to overcome the numerous obstacles to empirical investigation of children’s language competence. They produce research results that are more reproducible and less likely to be dismissed as an artifact of improper experimental procedure.
In the first section of the book, the authors examine the fundamental assumptions that guide research in this area; they present both a theory of linguistic competence and a model of language processing. In the following two sections, they discuss in detail their two experimental techniques.
“One of the first surveys to start research into the connections between linguistic data in children and the rules of Universal Grammar. . . . Crain and Thornton have written an ambitious book. It is an excellent introduction to investigations into child language.”