Children do not overcome lexical biases where adults do: The role of the referential scene in garden-path recovery

  • Kidd E
  • Stewart A
  • Serratrice L
  • 37


    Mendeley users who have this article in their library.
  • 24


    Citations of this article.


In this paper we report on a visual world eye-tracking experiment that investigated the differing abilities of adults and children to use referential scene information during reanalysis to overcome lexical biases during sentence processing. The results showed that adults incorporated aspects of the referential scene into their parse as soon as it became apparent that a test sentence was syntactically ambiguous, suggesting they considered the two alternative analyses in parallel. In contrast, the children appeared not to re-analyze their initial analysis, even over shorter distances than have been investigated in prior research. We argue that this reflects the children's over-reliance on bottom-up, lexical cues to interpretation. The implications for the development of parsing routines are discussed.

Get free article suggestions today

Mendeley saves you time finding and organizing research

Sign up here
Already have an account ?Sign in

Find this document

Get full text


  • Evan Kidd

  • Andrew J. Stewart

  • Ludovica Serratrice

Cite this document

Choose a citation style from the tabs below

Save time finding and organizing research with Mendeley

Sign up for free