WONNACOTT Elizabeth's profile
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WONNACOTT ElizabethORCID_LOGO

  • Education, University of Oxford, OXFORD, United Kingdom
  • Social sciences
  • recommender

Recommendation:  1

Reviews:  0

Areas of expertise
Language aquisition Psycholinguistics Second language acquisition, particularly experimental approaches

Recommendation:  1

07 Dec 2023
STAGE 1
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Investigating individual differences in linguistic statistical learning and their relation to rhythmic and cognitive abilities: A speech segmentation experiment with online neural tracking

Individual differences in linguistic statistical learning and the relationship to rhythm perception

Recommended by based on reviews by 2 anonymous reviewers
Previous research has demonstrated that experimental participants – both adults and infants – can track syllable co-occurrences in an artificial speech stream. This statistical learning (SL) is thought to support word segmentation and to be a core component of language acquisition. There is also some evidence that SL, as measured through artificial language tasks, is related to individual differences in language learning. What is not well understood is the underpinnings of individual differences in SL. In the current study, van der Wulp et al. (2023) will investigate the relationship between auditory SL and musical – specifically rhythmic – abilities. This work takes advantage of recent methodological innovations which allow online assessment of SL via electroencephalography (EEG) measures of neural entrainment. Up to N=105 participants will be recruited (using a well specified optional stopping procedure) and will be exposed to an artificial language using this EEG method to measure their response to the language through the exposure phase. In addition, post-tests will assess participants’ learning of the artificial language using behavioural tasks, as well as their abilities in a battery of tasks measuring rhythmic, musical, and cognitive abilities, and their vocabulary size. Core analyses will investigate whether the neural signature of statistical learning is found at a group level (i.e. replicating previous work) and whether at the individual level this is related to rhythm perception. Bayes factors will be used to assess the extent of evidence for these hypothesized relationships over the null. Exploratory analyses will explore other relationships, including with working memory and vocabulary size. 
 
The topic of individual differences in language learning and is important, but work in this area is often underpowered, and the correlational nature of the research makes it vulnerable to HARKing. In this context, the current RR looks set to make an important contribution. The Stage 1 manuscript was evaluated over two rounds of in-depth review by the recommender and two expert reviewers, and one additional round of review by the recommender, before issuing in-principle acceptance.
 
URL to the preregistered Stage 1 protocol: https://osf.io/2y6sx

Level of bias control achieved: Level 6. No part of the data or evidence that will be used to answer the research question yet exists and no part will be generated until after IPA.
 
List of eligible PCI RR-friendly journals:
 
 
References
 
1. van der Wulp, I. M., Struiksma, M. E., Batterink, L. J., & Wijnen, F. N. K. (2023). Investigating individual differences in linguistic statistical learning and their relation to rhythmic and cognitive abilities: A speech segmentation experiment with online neural tracking. In principle acceptance of Version 4 by Peer Community in Registered Reports. https://osf.io/2y6sx
 
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WONNACOTT ElizabethORCID_LOGO

  • Education, University of Oxford, OXFORD, United Kingdom
  • Social sciences
  • recommender

Recommendation:  1

Reviews:  0

Areas of expertise
Language aquisition Psycholinguistics Second language acquisition, particularly experimental approaches