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Phonological similarity effect on immediate recall of nonwords


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Vidović Zorić, Ana and Horga, Damir. (2013). Phonological similarity effect on immediate recall of nonwords. Govor : časopis za fonetiku, 30(1). pp. 3-20. ISSN 0352-7565

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The aim of this paper was to examine whether phonological similarity has a different effect on immediate recall of nonwords from short-term memory if the difference between them is based on a different position of similar phonemes within the syllable. The stimuli comprised 60 audio lists of nonwords with a CVC phonemic structure, which were divided in four groups. In the first group the nonwords on the list shared the same rhyme of the syllable (_VC); in the second group they shared onset and coda (C_C); in the third group the nonwords shared phonemes in their onsets and nuclei (CV_), and in the fourth, control group, all phonemes were phonologically dissimilar. The results show that phonological similarity facilitates recall of a single nonword, but also has a detrimental effect on the order memory, which is in accordance with non-linguistic models of short-term memory. However, differences in the recall were also found depending on the position of the same phonemes within the syllable: lists of C_C nonwords were more successfully recalled than lists of remaining two groups. The possible explanation for that is the fact that in C_C group the sound of the highest level of sonority, vowel, bears the information, and therefore the acoustic trace in short-term memory for C_C group is stronger. This result supports psycholinguistic models of short-term memory, which say that verbal stimuli make specific demands on short-term memory, different from other, non-linguistic, types of stimuli.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: phonological similarity effect, short-term memory, nonwords, syllable, sonority
Subjects: Phonetics
Departments: Department of Phonetics
Date Deposited: 16 Feb 2016 12:17
Last Modified: 16 Feb 2016 12:17

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