Are word association responses really the first words that come to mind?

PLAYFOOT, David, BALINT, Teodor, PANDYA, Vibhuti, PARKES, Averil, PETERS, Mollie and RICHARDS, Samantha (2016). Are word association responses really the first words that come to mind? Applied Linguistics. (In Press)

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Abstract

Word association has been a popular tool for research in linguistics and psychology over the last century. The paradigm presents participants with a cue word and asks them to respond with the first associated word that comes to mind. Inferences about the structure and organisation of the lexicon have been made on the basis of the findings of word association tasks, and on the assumption that responses reflect the strongest link between words in the participants' vocabulary. The procedure adopted in traditional word association tasks does not guarantee that this is the case. This paper presents two experiments that aimed to determine whether or not participants make deliberate and strategic responses in word association tasks. Findings indicate that word association responses are likely to reflect the first word that participants activate in their lexicon. Keywords : psycholinguistics, Methodology, Word association, Working memory, Lexical organisation.

Item Type: Article
Research Institute, Centre or Group: Psychology Research Group
Depositing User: David Playfoot
Date Deposited: 18 May 2016 11:57
Last Modified: 07 Dec 2016 19:09
URI: http://shura.shu.ac.uk/id/eprint/12205

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