Topics in Cognitive Science 5 (1):35-55 (2013)
AbstractChildren learn their native language by exposure to their linguistic and communicative environment, but apparently without requiring that their mistakes be corrected. Such learning from “positive evidence” has been viewed as raising “logical” problems for language acquisition. In particular, without correction, how is the child to recover from conjecturing an over-general grammar, which will be consistent with any sentence that the child hears? There have been many proposals concerning how this “logical problem” can be dissolved. In this study, we review recent formal results showing that the learner has sufficient data to learn successfully from positive evidence, if it favors the simplest encoding of the linguistic input. Results include the learnability of linguistic prediction, grammaticality judgments, language production, and form-meaning mappings. The simplicity approach can also be “scaled down” to analyze the learnability of specific linguistic constructions, and it is amenable to empirical testing as a framework for describing human language acquisition
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References found in this work
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Citations of this work
The Language Faculty That Wasn't: A Usage-Based Account of Natural Language Recursion.Morten H. Christiansen & Nick Chater - 2015 - Frontiers in Psychology 6.
Information Compression as a Unifying Principle in Human Learning, Perception, and Cognition.J. Gerard Wolff - 2019 - Complexity 2019:1-38.
Chomsky in the Playground: Idealization in Generative Linguistics.Giulia Terzian - 2021 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 87:1-12.
Simplicity of What? A Case Study From Generative Linguistics.Giulia Terzian & María Inés Corbalán - 2021 - Synthese 198 (10):9427-9452.
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