Semantic Knowledge Use in Different Discourse Types

ECU Author/Contributor (non-ECU co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Caroline R Abashian (Creator)
East Carolina University (ECU )
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Abstract: Extracted text; Semantic knowledge is an individual’s internal representations of a given object. In turn, semantic memory relates to the general knowledge and memory systems an individual uses for understanding concepts. Concepts are grouped into categories. Yet most research into semantic knowledge and category types is performed at the single concept level. Research is needed into the use of semantic knowledge and category types within discourse and across different discourse types. The purpose of this study, then, was to expand previous research by examining how semantic knowledge and category types were used in different types of discourse produced by adults across the adult lifespan. Cognitively healthy, younger (n=30, 20-39) and older (n=30; 60-89) participants told stories from single pictures and recounts that were transcribed and coded for 10 domains of semantic knowledge and also living and nonliving things. When exclusively examining living things, results indicated significant differences for stimuli but not for group. Additionally, there is no interaction between group and stimuli. For semantic knowledge types, there were significant differences for group and stimuli, but there was no interaction between group and stimuli. These findings extend previous research into the use of category and semantic knowledge types within discourse, and highlight the importance of examining multiple forms of discourse when analyzing the communication abilities of younger and older adults.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2016
aging, semantics, discourse

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