Schumacher, Rahel; Cazzoli, Dario; Eggenberger, Noëmi; Preisig, Basil; Nef, Tobias; Nyffeler, Thomas; Gutbrod, Klemens; Annoni, Jean-Marie; Müri, René M. (2015). Cue Recognition and Integration - Eye Tracking Evidence of Processing Differences in Sentence Comprehension in Aphasia. PLoS ONE, 10(11), e0142853. Public Library of Science 10.1371/journal.pone.0142853
http___www.plosone.org_article_fetchObject.action_uri=info_doi_10.1371_journal.pone.pdf - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons: Attribution (CC-BY).
Download (1MB) | Preview
PURPOSE: We aimed at further elucidating whether aphasic patients' difficulties in understanding non-canonical sentence structures, such as Passive or Object-Verb-Subject sentences, can be attributed to impaired morphosyntactic cue recognition, and to problems in integrating competing interpretations. METHODS: A sentence-picture matching task with canonical and non-canonical spoken sentences was performed using concurrent eye tracking. Accuracy, reaction time, and eye tracking data (fixations) of 50 healthy subjects and 12 aphasic patients were analysed. RESULTS: Patients showed increased error rates and reaction times, as well as delayed fixation preferences for target pictures in non-canonical sentences. Patients' fixation patterns differed from healthy controls and revealed deficits in recognizing and immediately integrating morphosyntactic cues. CONCLUSION: Our study corroborates the notion that difficulties in understanding syntactically complex sentences are attributable to a processing deficit encompassing delayed and therefore impaired recognition and integration of cues, as well as increased competition between interpretations.