Robust Processing Advantage for Binomial Phrases with Variant Conjunctions

Cognitive Science 46 (9):e13187 (2022)
  Copy   BIBTEX


Prior research has shown that various types of conventional multiword chunks are processed faster than matched novel strings, but it is unclear whether this processing advantage extends to variant multiword chunks that are less formulaic. To determine whether the processing advantage of multiword chunks accommodates variations in the canonical phrasal template, we examined the robustness of the processing advantage (i.e., predictability) of binomial phrases with non-canonical conjunctions (e.g., salt and also pepper; salt as well as pepper). Results from the cloze study (Experiment 1) showed that there was a high tendency of producing the canonical conjunct (pepper), even in the binomials that contained non-formulaic conjunctions. Consistent with these findings, results from two eye tracking studies (Experiments 2a and 2b) showed that canonical conjuncts were read faster than novel conjuncts that were matched on word length (e.g., paprika), even in the binomials with variant conjunctions. This robust online processing advantage was replicated in a self-paced reading study that compared all three conjunction types (Experiment 3). Taken together, these findings show that binomials with variant function words also receive facilitated processing relative to matched novel strings, even though both types of strings are neither conventional nor relatively frequent. Exploratory analyses revealed that this processing speed advantage was driven by the lexical–semantic association between the canonical conjuncts (salt–pepper), rather than lexical and phrasal frequency. Overall, these results highlight flexibility in the processing of multiword chunks that current models of multiword storage and processing must take into account.



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 77,697

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

Multiple and variant time scales in dynamic information processing.Hubert R. Dinse - 2001 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 24 (5):814-814.
The complexity-cost factor in bilingualism.Julia Festman - 2013 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 36 (4):355-356.
Dubious objections from iterated conjunctions.Matthew A. Benton - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 162 (2):355-358.


Added to PP

3 (#1,324,597)

6 months
3 (#244,731)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Emily Gerrett-Morgan
Bournemouth University

Citations of this work

No citations found.

Add more citations