Using probability distributions to account for recognition of canonical and reduced word forms

Meghan Clayards

Abstract


The frequency of a word form influences how efficiently it is processed, but canonical forms often show an advantage over reduced forms even when the reduced form is more frequent. This paper addresses this paradox by considering a model in which representations of lexical items consist of a distribution over forms. Optimal inference given these distributions accounts for item based differences in recognition of phonological variants and canonical form advantage.

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