Trouble articulating the right words: Evidence for a response-exclusion account of distraction during semantic fluency. / Marsh, John E; Crawford, Jessica C; Pilgrim, Lea K; Sörqvist, Patrik; Hughes, R.W.

In: Scandinavian Journal of Psychology, 22.08.2017.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

E-pub ahead of print
  • John E Marsh
  • Jessica C Crawford
  • Lea K Pilgrim
  • Patrik Sörqvist
  • R.W. Hughes

Abstract

It is widely held that single-word lexical access is a competitive process, a view based largely on the observation that naming a picture is slowed in the presence of a distractor-word. However, problematic for this view is that a low-frequency distractor-word slows the naming of a picture more than does a high-frequency word. This supports an alternative, response-exclusion, account in which a distractor-word interferes because it must be excluded from an articulatory output buffer before the right word can be articulated (the picture name): A high, compared to low, frequency word accesses the buffer more quickly and, as such, can also be excluded more quickly. Here we studied the respective roles of competition and response-exclusion for the first time in the context of semantic verbal fluency, a setting requiring the accessing of, and production of, multiple words from long-term memory in response to a single semantic cue. We show that disruption to semantic fluency by a sequence of to-be-ignored spoken distractors is also greater when those distractors are low in frequency, thereby extending the explanatory compass of the response-exclusion account to a multiple-word production setting and casting further doubt on the lexical-selection-by-competition view. The results can be understood as reflecting the contribution of speech output processes to semantic fluency.
Original languageEnglish
JournalScandinavian Journal of Psychology
Early online date22 Aug 2017
DOIs
StateE-pub ahead of print - 22 Aug 2017
This open access research output is licenced under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

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