Development of Scene Grammar

Would you look for the milk under your bed? Probably not! Because as adults we know WHICH objects belong into which context (milk belongs into the kitchen, not in the bedroom) and we know WHERE objects belong within this context (milk goes in fridge, not in the oven). But WHEN in our development do we observe indices of this knowledge and when does it become behaviorally relevant? In adults, the influence on behavior is usually indexed using unexpected object-scene combinations, i.e. showing objects in scenes in which they do not belong (e.g. milk in bedroom). The processing of those objects is disturbed compared to scene consistent objects (e.g. pillow in bedroom) as measured by eye movements and EEG measures. To follow the developmental trajectory we will investigate children of different age levels in a cross-sectional design adapting the EEG and Eye Tracking tasks used in adults. But what are the mechanisms through which this knowledge is acquired? We would also like to imitate the developmental process by making adults (and children) learn new grammar rules that can be tracked with eye movement and EEG measures.

Related publications

Maffongelli, L., Öhlschläger, S., & Võ, M. L.-H. (2020). The development of scene semantics: First ERP indications for the processing of semantic object-scene inconsistencies in 24-month-olds. Collabra: Psychology, 6(1): 17707. pdf



Öhlschläger, S., & Võ, M. L. H. (2020). Development of scene knowledge: Evidence from explicit and implicit scene knowledge measures. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology194, 104782. pdf