Claudia Marzi Marcello Ferro Vito Pirrelli

Morphological structure through lexical parsability

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The emergence of morphological structure in lexical acquisition is analysed in the computational framework of Temporal Self-Organising Maps (TSOMs), to provide an explanatory basis for both psycholinguistic and linguistic accounts of lexical parsability. The investigation we propose is grounded on the hypothesis that perception of morphological structure (parsability) and frequency strongly correlate in the acquisition of inflectional paradigms. Analysis of experimental results of word acquisition obtained by artificially varying training conditions, allows us to understand developmental competition between fully-inflected word forms, and to investigate a hierarchy of frequency effects. The computational and theoretical implications of such a memory-based view of the relationship between frequency and perception, and its potential to account for long-term morphological effects in lexical acquisition are illustrated.


  • Inflectional Paradigms
  • Morphological Structure
  • Token/type Frequency
  • Word Processing


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