Donders Institute for Brain, Cognition and Behaviour
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Thesis defense Andreas Mädebach (Donders Series 72)

October 25, 2012.

Promotor: Prof.dr. H. Schriefers

Lexical access in speaking: Studies on lexical selection and cascading activation

The work presented in this thesis was concerned with the mechanisms of access to the lexical knowledge of a speaker during speech planning. The thesis presents two series of picture-naming experiments, each concerned with one current theoretical debate in language production research. The first series of experiments was concerned with the process of lexical selection, i.e., the selection of to-be-spoken words amongst a number of alternatives. These experiments support the notion that lexical selection is a competitive process. The second series of experiments investigated under which circumstances the names of pictures which are perceived (in the context of a naming task), but are not intended to be named, are nonetheless activated. These experiments support the idea, that unintended activation of picture names is possible, but suggest that this is restricted by the availability of processing resources. That is, it is more likely if the not-be-named objects are easy to process and the primary (picture-naming) task is not too demanding.