Dr. Erin Isbilen, Haskins Laboratories, Postdoctoral Research Fellow

Thursday, April 7, 2022 - 12:30pm

Statistical learning as chunking: Domain-general computations in language acquisition

How do individuals acquire language in the face of the perceptual challenges posed by the speech signal? In this talk, I argue for the contribution of chunking—a basic memory process—to the statistical learning of language. My research illustrates how statistical learning and chunking work together to enable the learning and generalization of a variety of linguistic structures, and how proficiency in statistically-facilitated chunking predicts individual differences in natural language processing. Together, these studies highlight the fundamental contribution of basic, domain general computations to language—both in the lab and in the real world.