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Cynthia A C Lukyanenko

Psychology

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Research Description

I am interested in young children's acquisition of syntax, especially how children learn about and from syntactic dependencies in language. Syntactic dependencies are abstract relationships between elements of a sentence, which makes them excellent tools for exploring a variety of issues in developmental psycholinguistics: for investigating children's developing structural knowledge and online processing abilities, and how children turn patterns in the linguistic input into grammatical rules.

Recently I have been investigating children's knowledge of subject-verb agreement in English: I have shown that 3-year-olds use an agreeing verb as a cue to grammatical number of the subject during online comprehension, and that they rely primarily on grammatical number (not the actual number of objects present) when choosing agreeing forms in their own speech.

Education

  • Ph.D. in Developmental Psychology, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
  • M.A. in Developmental Psychology, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
  • B.A. in Linguistics, University of Maryland, College Park

Publications

Book Contributions

  • Lukyanenko, Cynthia, and Cynthia Fisher. "30-month-olds use verb agreement features in online sentence processing." Proceedings of the 38th Annual Boston University Conference on Language Development. 2014.

Journal Articles