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Object and action picture naming in English and Greek

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Three experiments are reported which investigate the naming of line drawings of actions and objects. In Experiments 1 and 2 participants were adults who had English as their first and main language. In Experiment 1 they named 100 action and 100 object pictures from Druks and Masterson (2000). Participants were asked to use the present participle (-ing) form of the verbs when naming the action pictures. In Experiment 2 participants named the same set of stimuli but using the uninflected verb form for the action pictures. In Experiment 3 a subset of the stimuli were used to carry out a naming study in the Greek language. The results of the three experiments were largely consistent. Naming latencies for both action and object pictures were affected by the variable age of acquisition. In addition, latencies for action pictures were longer than those for object pictures. However, the difference was not significant once the visual complexity of the pictures and the imageability of their names were controlled for. Post hoc analyses indicated that the pattern of results obtained in the three experiments was not due to characteristics of the initial phonemes of the picture names. A series of regression analyses confirmed that naming latencies were significantly affected by age of acquisition, but revealed in addition that spoken frequency had a significant effect on the naming latencies obtained in Experiments 1 and 3. The results are discussed in terms of current models of lexical access.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: University of Essex, UK

Publication date: January 1, 2003


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