Language Development

In this video I provide an overview of language development in children. Children learn thousands of words within a matter of a few years and they seem to effortlessly pick up and apply the rules of grammar, first in their telegraphic speech and later in more complex sentences. Errors of overgeneralization reveal that by age 4 or 5 children already …

Universal Grammar

In this video I provide a brief introduction to Noam Chomsky’s theory of Universal Grammar, which suggests that all human languages must share certain features. The human predisposition for language acquisition which allows us to acquire any human language depending on exposure suggests that all language follow the same types of rules even though they may differ in their specific …

Introduction to Linguistics

In this video I introduce some terminology from linguistics for describing how languages use sounds to represent meaning. Phonemes refers to the individual sounds used in a language, while morphemes refer to units of meaning. Phonological rules dictate how sounds can be combined in a language (with variations resulting in accents), while syntactical rules relate to how words can be …

Language Acquisition: Skinner vs. Chomsky

In this video I introduce language acquisition as a type of learning that isn’t explained well by the behaviorist principles we saw in the unit on learning theory. In the next few videos we’ll be looking at linguistics and language acquisition in more detail and then considering how language relates to thought. We begin with Noam Chomsky’s review of B.F. …

What is the Availability Heuristic?

In their first study of the availability heuristic, Tversky and Kahneman asked participants to estimate whether English had more words that started with the letter K or more words that had K as the third letter. What do you think? If you’re like most participants in their study, you might guess that there are more words that start with k …

Language, Thought, & Cognition Resources

On this page you’ll find a number of resources for understanding the key concepts of linguistics, cognition, and thought, including language acquisition, problem-solving, and decision-making. If I’ve missed a good resource, please share it in the comments section! General Resources Language & Cognition Key Terms Language Acquisition Pinterest Page Decision-Making Pinterest Page OpenStax Cognition & Language Chapter Master Introductory Psychology …

Key Terms for Language and Cognition

Download a free pdf of this key terms list here: Language-and-Cognition-Key-Terms Find explanations and examples of all of these key terms and more here: Master Introductory Psychology: Complete Edition           B. F. Skinner Noam Chomsky   language acquisition device (LAD)   linguistics   phonemes   morphemes   phonological rules   accent   syntactical rules   fast-mapping   …