Is a Pink Cow Still a Cow? Individual Differences in Toddlers' Vocabulary Knowledge and Lexical Representations

Cognitive Science 41 (4):1090-1105 (2017)

When a toddler knows a word, what does she actually know? Many categories have multiple relevant properties; for example, shape and color are relevant to membership in the category banana. How do toddlers prioritize these properties when recognizing familiar words, and are there systematic differences among children? In this study, toddlers viewed pairs of objects associated with prototypical colors. On some trials, objects were typically colored ; on other trials, colors were switched. On each trial, toddlers were directed to find a target object. Overall, recognition was disrupted when colors were switched, as measured by eye movements. Moreover, individual differences in vocabularies predicted recognition differences: Toddlers who say fewer shape-based words were more disrupted by color switches. “Knowing” a word may not mean the same thing for all toddlers; different toddlers prioritize different facets of familiar objects in their lexical representations.
Keywords Lexical representation  Object recognition  Language development  Individual differences  Vocabulary
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1111/cogs.12370
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

Our Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 39,607
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Some Reflections on the Lexical Meaning.Alina-Mihaela Bursuc - 2012 - Human and Social Studies 1 (1):95-106.


Added to PP index

Total views
12 ( #580,244 of 2,325,388 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
4 ( #420,115 of 2,325,388 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes

Sign in to use this feature