Title: No ambiguity in the acquisition of adjunct control
Abstract: Previous research on the acquisition of adjunct control has found that preschool-aged children allow non-adultlike interpretations of PRO in sentences like "John bumped Mary after PRO tripping on the sidewalk." However, variability in rate of non-adultlike interpretations suggests that task-related factors may have contributed to children’s behavior. Furthermore, no single account explains all of the data. In two Truth Value Judgment Task experiments, we found that 4-5 year-olds treat PRO in a non-finite adjuncts different from an ambiguous pronoun in a finite adjunct, suggesting that children know that the subject of a non-finite adjunct clause must be bound by the main clause subject.
Title: Similar words compete, but only when they’re from the same syntactic category
Abstract: In language production, it is broadly agreed that speakers must resolve competition among simultaneously active words. It is also agreed that a competition between semantically associates (e.g., dog and cat) often surfaces as speech errors or delay in production. One issue that needs experimental scrutiny, however, is the role of grammatical category in this competition. In two experiments using a novel 'sentence-picture interference’ task, we assessed the role of the grammatical category in lexical competition. The results suggest that semantically related words compete with each other, but only when they share the same grammatical category.