YEARS

2011-2017

AUTHORS

Gayle L Dede

TITLE

Sentence Comprehension Impairments in Aphasia

ABSTRACT

DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): More than one million Americans have aphasia, and most of them experience some difficulty with sentence comprehension. These impairments may limit the ability to fully participate in everyday activities such as conversations and reading. Whereas considerable knowledge has been gained regarding how syntactic structure affects sentence comprehension in people with aphasia, a full understanding of the underlying deficit remains elusive. As a result, the best approaches for evaluation and treatment of sentence comprehension disorders remain unknown. This proposal draws on theories of unimpaired sentence processing to formulate new questions about the variables that make sentences difficult for people with aphasia to understand. The proposed experiments use measures of real-time sentence processing to test the hypotheses that (1) impairments affecting how quickly people with aphasia access words contribute to sentence comprehension disorders and (2) performance on measures of spoken and written sentence comprehension in people with aphasia will be similar unless there are experimental manipulations that have different effects on spoken and written word access. To test these hypotheses, two methods that are commonly used to study real-time written sentence processing in unimpaired populations, self-paced reading and eye-tracking during reading, will be extended to the study of sentence comprehension impairments in aphasia. Performance of two groups, people with aphasia and healthy age- and education- matched controls, will be compared on the two measures of real-time written sentence processing and on self-paced listening, a method that is sensitive to real-time auditory sentence processing. At present, the candidate is proficient in group studies of auditory sentence comprehension impairments in people with aphasia. However, she requires additional career development training to deepen her content knowledge of written language and lexical processing, and to develop expertise in the methods involved in using eye-tracking to study reading, and acquisition and analysis of structural MRI data. The University of Arizona has an exceptionally strong research tradition in neurogenic communication disorders (including the study of aphasia), as well as psycholinguistic studies of word and sentence processing. Neuroimaging research and lesion analysis is also highly developed at the University of Arizona, thus making it an ideal setting for the targeted skill development and conduct of the proposed research. The training opportunities will help the candidate launch a product-ive and independent research program that aims to understand the underlying nature of sentence comprehension disorders in aphasia in order to develop more effective methods for the evaluation and treatment of these impairments.

FUNDED PUBLICATIONS

  • Effects of word frequency and modality on sentence comprehension impairments in people with aphasia.
  • Verb Transitivity Bias Affects On-line Sentence Reading in People with Aphasia.
  • Effects of Verb Bias and Syntactic Ambiguity on Reading in People with Aphasia.
  • Reading and listening in people with aphasia: effects of syntactic complexity.
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    24 TRIPLES      17 PREDICATES      25 URIs      9 LITERALS

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    1 grants:e0a33e71fddf74900712076014773ebe sg:abstract DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): More than one million Americans have aphasia, and most of them experience some difficulty with sentence comprehension. These impairments may limit the ability to fully participate in everyday activities such as conversations and reading. Whereas considerable knowledge has been gained regarding how syntactic structure affects sentence comprehension in people with aphasia, a full understanding of the underlying deficit remains elusive. As a result, the best approaches for evaluation and treatment of sentence comprehension disorders remain unknown. This proposal draws on theories of unimpaired sentence processing to formulate new questions about the variables that make sentences difficult for people with aphasia to understand. The proposed experiments use measures of real-time sentence processing to test the hypotheses that (1) impairments affecting how quickly people with aphasia access words contribute to sentence comprehension disorders and (2) performance on measures of spoken and written sentence comprehension in people with aphasia will be similar unless there are experimental manipulations that have different effects on spoken and written word access. To test these hypotheses, two methods that are commonly used to study real-time written sentence processing in unimpaired populations, self-paced reading and eye-tracking during reading, will be extended to the study of sentence comprehension impairments in aphasia. Performance of two groups, people with aphasia and healthy age- and education- matched controls, will be compared on the two measures of real-time written sentence processing and on self-paced listening, a method that is sensitive to real-time auditory sentence processing. At present, the candidate is proficient in group studies of auditory sentence comprehension impairments in people with aphasia. However, she requires additional career development training to deepen her content knowledge of written language and lexical processing, and to develop expertise in the methods involved in using eye-tracking to study reading, and acquisition and analysis of structural MRI data. The University of Arizona has an exceptionally strong research tradition in neurogenic communication disorders (including the study of aphasia), as well as psycholinguistic studies of word and sentence processing. Neuroimaging research and lesion analysis is also highly developed at the University of Arizona, thus making it an ideal setting for the targeted skill development and conduct of the proposed research. The training opportunities will help the candidate launch a product-ive and independent research program that aims to understand the underlying nature of sentence comprehension disorders in aphasia in order to develop more effective methods for the evaluation and treatment of these impairments.
    2 sg:endYear 2017
    3 sg:fundingAmount 854258.0
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    19 sg:scigraphId e0a33e71fddf74900712076014773ebe
    20 sg:startYear 2011
    21 sg:title Sentence Comprehension Impairments in Aphasia
    22 sg:webpage http://projectreporter.nih.gov/project_info_description.cfm?aid=9070881
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    24 rdfs:label Grant: Sentence Comprehension Impairments in Aphasia
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