Search for European Projects

Tuning Attention during Language Learning (TUNINGLANG)
Start date: Mar 1, 2013, End date: Feb 28, 2018 PROJECT  FINISHED 

Language is the most amazing skill that humans possess. It allows social interaction, can make us cry, laugh and transmit our most complex thoughts. Comprehending the cognitive processes involved in language learning is of critical importance for our understanding of why under certain conditions language learning is impaired. However, current language learning research has often offered limited explanations bounded within the language domain, ignoring the importance of other cognitive functions. The present project breaks these limits and presents an integrative approach at the edge of different research fields to understand the role of attention during language acquisition. Because speech is a sequence of sounds that unfold in time the present proposal integrates this long ignored temporal dimension. The aim of the project is thus to understand the involvement of the temporal orienting brain networks in language learning and how the attentional system may be tuned to the acquisition of words and rules. Three specific objectives will be fulfilled: (i) delineating the temporal attention mechanisms and brain networks involved in language learning, (ii) uncovering the developmental relationship in infants between these specific attentional mechanisms and word and rule learning, and (iii) understanding how the deficits in temporal orienting and the lesions in its brain networks may lead to similar deficits in language acquisition. This project uses a combination of novel methods allowing linking structural and functional measures (analysis of oscillatory activity following EEG variations during learning, fMRI – structural MRI white matter tractography and TMS) in different populations (brain-damaged patients, infants and healthy adults).
Up2Europe Ads