Tilburg center for Cognition and Communication (TiCC)

We study how people communicate with each other and how computer systems can be taught to communicate with us.

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Chen Yu

What: Statistical Word Learning: Behaviors, Mechanisms and Models
Where: WZ 201
When: Friday, 6 November 2015, 12:30 - 13:30 hours



Recent theory and experiments offer a new solution as to how human learners may break into word learning, by using cross-situational statistics to find the underlying word-referent mappings. Computational models demonstrate the in-principle plausibility of this statistical learning solution and experimental evidence shows that both adults and infants can aggregate and make statistically appropriate decisions from word-referent co-occurrence data. In this talk, I will first review these empirical and modeling contributions to investigate cognitive processes in statistical word learning, focusing on a debate between associative learning and hypothesis testing. Next, I will present a set of studies using head-mounted cameras and eye trackers to collect and analyze toddlers' visual input as parents label novel objects during an object-play session. The results show how toddlers and parents coordinate momentary visual attention when exploring novel objects in a free-flowing task, and how toddlers accumulate co-occurring statistics of seen objects and heard words through free play. I will conclude by suggesting that future research should focus on detailing the statistics in the learning environment and the cognitive processes that make use of those statistics.


More about Chen Yu (from Indiana University), you can read on his webpage.

You can also visit his lab page.



When: 06 November 2015 12:30

End date: 06 November 2015 13:30