The Psychology of Language: From Data to Theory / Edition 3

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Now in full colour, this fully revised edition of the best-selling textbook provides an up-to-date and comprehensive introduction to the psychology of language for undergraduates, postgraduates, and researchers. It contains everything the student needs to know about how we acquire, understand, produce, and store language.

Whilst maintaining both the structure of the previous editions and the emphasis on cognitive processing, this fourth edition has been thoroughly updated to include:

  • the latest research, including recent results from the fast-moving field of brain imaging and studies
  • updated coverage of key ideas and models
  • an expanded glossary
  • more real-life examples and illustrations.

The Psychology of Language, Fourth Edition is praised for describing complex ideas in a clear and approachable style, and assumes no prior knowledge other than a grounding in the basic concepts of cognitive psychology. It will be essential reading for advanced undergraduate and graduate students of cognition, psycholinguistics, or the psychology of language. It will also be useful for those on speech and language therapy courses.

The book is supported by a companion website featuring a range of helpful supplementary resources for both students and lecturers.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Thank goodness for Harley's textbook, The Psychology of Language! I have been recommending it to undergraduate students in my third year ‘Language and Cognition’ course ever since the first edition came out because it provides the ideal resource for accessing basic information about virtually every topic within the domain of psycholinguistics. With each new edition, the coverage becomes increasingly comprehensive and accessible and, while the growing popularity of neuroimaging is acknowledged, an appropriately cautious approach is taken to its contribution to our understanding of language processing. Whether such a stance will hold up in future years is an interesting question – and is the very question that Harley leaves us with." -Marcus Taft, University of New South Wales, Australia

"This excellent book provides a very good overview of topics and controversies and the most important models in the field of psycholinguistics. The breadth is impressive without becoming shallow; the text is engaging and comprehensible. Highly recommended." - Ken Ramshøj Christensen, Aarhus University, Denmark

"This edition of Trevor Harley’s introduction to psycholinguistics retains its broad coverage of the science of language, and infuses it with new material that enhances our appreciation of how contemporary tools and findings color the mix of evolving theory and experiment. Harley examines not just how language use can be studied, but what that study can be used for. It’s a timely synthesis, well executed and accessible." - Merrill Garrett, University of Arizona, USA

"Trevor Harley has yet again revised his very successful textbook on psycholinguistics in light of new research. The coverage of this work is quite remarkable and it constitutes the ideal resource for advanced undergraduate students, postgraduate students and researchers interested in the field. He extensively discusses theoretical developments and experimental studies that are leading to the transformation of this field of enquiry." - Martin Pickering, University of Edinburgh, UK

Praise for previous editions:

"It is comprehensive, covering all aspects of psycholinguistics ... As such it is an excellent companion to an undergraduate speech and language therapy degree course, interlinking modules of study into a cohesive whole. It would also be an accessible reference resource for practising therapists." - Kathy Jones-Williams, in Speech & Language Therapy in Practice

"I want this book for me, not just for my students. For the student, it's an exceptionally thorough, but lively, introduction to language use in a wider context. For me, it's a valuable reminder of psycholinguistics's evolution from its concerns with the psychological reality of grammar, to its current spot at the center of modern cognitive neuroscience." - Gary S. Dell, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign,USA

"Trevor Harley provides a systematic and lucid introduction to the scientific study of human language use. He traverses a complex range of topics from foundational theory and experiment to practical matters of pedagogy and pathology. It's a winning combination delivered with wit, balanced accuracy, and admirable directness of style." - Professor Merrill Garrett, Psychology Department, University of Arizona, USA

"Harley’s book offers an excellent means of enhancing our understanding of language. It provides a clear, comprehensive and thorough review of the current state of play in psycholinguistics, making it an ideal choice for advanced undergraduate and graduate students." - Annukka Lindell, University of Wales, Bangor, UK

"Harley has thoroughly revised his very successful textbook on psycholinguistics in light of new research. The coverage of this work is quite remarkable and it constitutes the ideal resource for advanced undergraduate students, postgraduate students and researchers interested in the field." - Martin Pickering, University of Edinburgh, UK

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781841693828
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis
  • Publication date: 2/1/2009
  • Edition description: REV
  • Edition number: 3
  • Pages: 624
  • Product dimensions: 7.40 (w) x 9.60 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Trevor A. Harley is Dean of Psychology and Chair of Cognitive Psychology at the University of Dundee, Scotland. He was an undergraduate at the University of Cambridge, where he was also a PhD student, completing a thesis on slips of the tongue and what they tell us about speech production. He moved to Dundee from the University of Warwick in 1996. His research interests include speech production, how we represent meaning, and the effects of aging on language.

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Table of Contents

Preface. How to Use this Book. Section A. Introduction. 1. The Study of Language. Introduction. Why Study Language and Why Is It So Difficult? What is Language? How Has Language Changed Over Time? What is Language For? The History and Methods of Psycholinguistics. Models in Psycholinguistics. Language and the Brain. Themes and Controversies. Summary. Some Questions to Think About. Further Reading. 2. Describing Language. Introduction. How to Describe Speech Sounds. Consonants. Vowels. Syllables. Linguistic Approaches to Syntax. Summary. Some Questions to Think About. Further Reading. Section B. The Biological and Developmental Bases of Language. 3. The Foundations of Language. Introduction. Where Did Language Come From? Do Animals Have Language? The Biological Basis of Language. Is There a Critical Period for Language Development? The Cognitive Basis of Language. The Social Basis of Language. What is the Relation Between Language and Thought? Summary. Some Questions to Think About. Further Reading. 4. Language Development. Introduction. What Drives Language Development. The Language Acquisition Device. Phonological Development. Syntactic Development. Summary. Some Questions to Think About. Further Reading. 5. Bilingualism and Second Language Acquisition. Introduction. Bilingualism. Second Language Acquisition. Evaluation of Work on Bilingualism and Second Language Acquisition. Summary. Some Questions to Think About. Further reading. Section C. Word Recognition. 6. Recognizing Visual Words. Introduction. Basic Methods and Findings. What Makes Word Recognition Easier (or Harder)? Attentional Processes in Visual Word Recognition. Do Different Tasks Give Consistent Results? Is There a Dedicated Visual Word Recognition System? Meaning-based Facilitation of Visual Word Recognition. Processing Morphologically Complex Words. Models of Visual Word Recognition. Coping with Lexical Ambiguity. Summary. Some Questions to Think About. Further Reading. 7. Reading. Introduction. The Writing System. A Preliminary Model of Reading. The Processes of Normal Reading. The Neuroscience of Adult Reading Disorders. Models of Word Naming. Connectionism Models of Dyslexia. Comparison of Models. Summary. Some Questions to Think About. Further Reading. 8. Learning to Read and Spell. Introduction. Normal Reading Development. Phonological Awareness. How Should Reading be Taught? Learning to Spell. Developmental Dyslexia. Summary. Some Questions to Think About. Further Reading. 9. Understanding Speech. Introduction. Recognizing Speech. Models of Speech Recognition. The Neuroscience of Spoken Word Recognition. Summary. Some Questions to Think About. F urther Reading. Section D. Meaning and Using Language. 10. Understanding the Structure of Sentences. Introduction. Dealing with Structural Ambiguity. Early work on Parsing. Processing Structural Ambiguity. Gaps, Traces, and Unbounded Dependencies. The Neuroscience of Parsing. Summary. Some Questions to Think About. Further Reading. 11. Word Meaning. Introduction. Classic Approaches to Semantics. Semantic Networks. Semantic Features. Family Resemblance Models. Combining Concepts. Figurative Language. The Neuroscience of Semantics. Summary. Some Questions to Think About. Further Reading. 12. Comprehension. Introduction. Memory for Text and Inferences. Inferences. References and Ambiguity. Models of Text Processing. Individual Differences in Comprehension Skills. The Neuroscience of Text and Discourse Processing. Summary. Some Questions to Think About. Further Reading. Section E. Production and Other Aspects of Language. 13. Language Production. Introduction. Slips of the Tongue. Syntactic Planning. Lexicalization. Phonological Encoding. The Analysis of Hesitations. The Neuroscience of Speech Production. Writing and Agraphia. Summary. Some Questions to Think About. Further Reading. 14. How Do We Use Language? Introduction. Making Inferences in Conversation. The Structure of Conversation. Collaboration in Dialog. Sound and Vision. Summary. Some Questions to Think About. Further Reading. 15. The Structure of the Language System. Introduction. What are the Modules of Language? How Many Lexicons are There? Language and Short-term Memory. Summary. Some Questions to Think About. Further Reading. 16. New Directions. Introduction. Themes in Psycholinguistics Revisited. Some Growth Areas? Conclusion. Appendix: Connectionism. Interactive Activation Models. Back-propagation. Further Reading. Glossary. Example of Sentence Analysis. References. Author Index. Subject Index.

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