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The Interaction between Phonology and Semantics in Children’s Acquisition of the English Plural (pp.177-188) $100.00
Authors:  (Jennifer Zapf, Marc Ettlinger, University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, Department of Psychology and Human Development, Green Bay, Wisconsin, USA, and others)
Abstract:
The current chapter reports on an experiment that was designed to take an
interdisciplinary look at the factors that influence children’s plural productions. Previous
work has shown that children are sensitive to the complexity of the coda on plural forms
(Ettlinger and Zapf, 2008), as well as to the meaning of the plural (Zapf and Smith, 2008)
as they construct their plural productions. The goal of this study was to examine whether
there is an interaction between the phonological makeup of plural forms and the semantic
knowledge that underlies them. In an elicited production task, plural forms were elicited
from one-hundred-twenty two-year-old children for nouns with codas containing varying
phonological properties and for sets of multiple instances which varied on one dimension
of the meaning of the plural (number). The results suggest that production of the plural
morpheme is partly governed by the complexity of the coda as well as the semantic
makeup of the set. We propose that research on children’s developing language abilities
necessarily involves an interdisciplinary approach, one which incorporates the many
pieces necessary to fully develop a language system which allows one to appropriately
map form to meaning. 


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The Interaction between Phonology and Semantics in Children’s Acquisition of the English Plural (pp.177-188)