My dissertation project investigates the specificity of conceptual representations in language processing. It focuses on three central issues: (i) the correlation between lexical entries and the specificity of their conceptual representations, (ii) factors determining differences in conceptual specificity during online-processing and (iii) cognitive effects (e.g., on activation strength, salience, memory) of high or low specificity. The topic is considered from both perspectives language production and comprehension, using behavioral and neurophysiological methods.
The research is guided by the following main areas of interest. Due to the central and highly diagnostic role assigned to shape information in object naming, word production studies mainly concentrate on shape specificity and its impact on lexical access. In language comprehension, I am particularly interested in the nature of conceptual representations resulting from processing variously specific eventive verbs. The research of this part aims to clarify and model not only the effects of verb-semantic specificity on action representations but also spin-off effects on the on-line processing of involved event participants and their mental representations (working partially in collaboration with other CRC 991 projects and beyond).
Scheibel, M. & Indefrey, P. (2017). The role of shape information in object naming. Conference: Architectures and Mechanisms of Language Processing, Lancaster, UK: September.