Verb Intuitions: About

The experiment you just completed is part of an ESF funded project called EuroUnderstanding, and our particular project is called Digging for the Roots of Understanding (DRUST). We’re looking to answer questions about how people use linguistic rules, and in particular, to investigate how linguistic rules might be used differently by Native English speakers as contrasted with Non-Native English speakers. The experiment you participated in is a type of Wug Test, which uses fake (but plausible-sounding) verbs, and asks you to generate a past tense form. In this way, we can measure how you apply the past tense rule to new forms (generally, add -ed), but more interestingly, what you might do when you don’t apply this rule. We predict that even though people usually apply the rule, when they don’t they will do it in similar ways (e.g., the past tense of fring is frung). Some research predicts that non-native speakers prefer adherence to the general rule, and our experiment will allow us to test this explicitly under conditions where speakers are asked not only to evaluate forms, but to generate them. If you have any questions, please use the form below to contact the researchers.