ISSN 1671-3710
CN 11-4766/R

›› 2012, Vol. 20 ›› Issue (2): 208-218.

• 研究方法 • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Syntactic Priming: Paradigm and Controversy in Language Comprehension

CHEN Qing-Rong   

  1. (School of Psychology, Nanjing Normal University, Nanjing 210097, China)
  • Received:2011-07-04 Revised:1900-01-01 Online:2012-02-15 Published:2012-02-15
  • Contact: CHEN Qing-Rong

Abstract: Repetition is a central phenomenon of behavior. In the language sciences, a ubiquitous form of such repetition is syntactic priming, and researchers have made extensive use of it to better understand how language is represented and processed. This paper provides an overview of the sentence types and paradigms employed to investigate the nature of syntactic priming: sentence-retelling picture-describing paradigm, sentence-completion paradigm, sentence-recall paradigm and visual-world eye-movement paradigm. In addition to examining the strength and weakness of these paradigms, the paper also points out two current controversies regarding syntactic priming in language comprehension: 1) whether priming in sentence comprehension is strategic, semantic or syntactic; 2) whether syntactic priming in comprehension is lexically driven or lexically independent. Finally, the paper suggests possible avenues for future research in this field.

Key words: language comprehension, syntactic priming, paradigm, eye movement