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Sleep-associated changes in the mental representation of spoken words

Dumay, N. and Gaskell, G. (2007) Sleep-associated changes in the mental representation of spoken words. Psychological Science, 18 (1). pp. 35-39. ISSN 0956-7976

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The integration of a newly learned spoken word form with existing knowledge in the mental lexicon is characterized by the word form's ability to compete with similar-sounding entries during auditory word recognition. Here we show that although the mere acquisition of a spoken form is swift, its engagement in lexical competition requires an incubation-like period that is crucially associated with sleep. Words learned at 8 p.m. do not induce (inhibitory) competition effects immediately, but do so after a 12-hr interval including a night's sleep, and continue to induce such effects after 24 hr. In contrast, words learned at 8 a.m. do not show such effects immediately or after 12 hr of wakefulness, but show the effects only after 24 hr, after sleep has occurred. This time-course dissociation is best accommodated by connectionist and neural models of learning in which sleep provides an opportunity for hippocampal information to be fed into long-term neocortical memory.

Item Type: Article
Institution: The University of York
Academic Units: The University of York > Psychology (York)
Depositing User: York RAE Import
Date Deposited: 13 Feb 2009 12:32
Last Modified: 13 Feb 2009 12:32
Published Version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-9280.2007.01845.x
Status: Published
Publisher: Blackwell Publishing Ltd
Identification Number: 10.1111/j.1467-9280.2007.01845.x
URI: http://eprints.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/7437

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