ISSN 1671-3710
CN 11-4766/R

Advances in Psychological Science ›› 2018, Vol. 26 ›› Issue (10): 1765-1774.doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2018.01765

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Word segmentation cues in the process of spoken language

YU Wenbo, LIANG Dandan()   

  1. School of Chinese Language and Culture, Nanjing Normal University, Nanjing 210097, China
  • Received:2017-12-27 Online:2018-10-15 Published:2018-08-27
  • Contact: Dandan LIANG


Words are generally considered as the basic unit of language processing. Hence word segmentation is a vital step for language comprehension. In speech processing, cues for word segmentation may be phonological, grammatical or semantic. Phonological cues can be further classified as statistic, phonotactic and prosodic, while prosodic information involves stress, duration and pitch. Phonological cues are generally acquired at the initial stage of language learning, and they differ as the linguistic environment changes. Semantic and grammatical knowledge provide high-level cues which constrains word segmentation at later stage. It is suggested that future research focus on the trajectory of segmentation cues in a lifespan and the specificity of language in the process of word segmentation.

Key words: spoken language, word segmentation, phonology, semantics, grammar