Muller-Gass, A., Roye, A., Kirmse, U., Saupe, K., Jacobsen, T., & Schröger, E. (2007). Automatic detection of lexical change: an auditory event-related potential study. Neuroreport, 18(16), 1747-1751.

Automatic detection of lexical change: an auditory event-related potential study

We investigated the detection of rare task-irrelevant changes in the lexical status of speech stimuli. Participants performed a nonlinguistic task on word and pseudoword stimuli that occurred, in separate conditions, rarely or frequently. Task performance for pseudowords was deteriorated relative to words, suggesting unintentional lexical analysis. Furthermore, rare word and pseudoword changes had a similar effect on the event-related potentials, starting as early as 165 ms. This is the first demonstration of the automatic detection of change in lexical status that is not based on a co-occurring acoustic change. We propose that, following lexical analysis of the incoming stimuli, a mental representation of the lexical regularity is formed and used as a template against which lexical change can be detected.


Cognitive and Biological Psychology

University of Leipzig
Faculty of Life Sciences
Institute of Psychology
Neumarkt 9-19
D-04109 Leipzig


Dagmar Schrödl
Phone: +49 341 97-39570
Email: dagmar dot schroedl at uni-leipzig dot de

Dorit Thieme
Phone: +49 341 97-39540
Email: d dot thieme at uni-leipzig dot de

Fax: +49 341 97-39271