AGL Workshop

Artificial Grammar Learning: Implications of domain, modality and species differences
An Evolang 2018 satellite workshop, 16 April 2018

Elisabetta Versace1, Michelle Spierings2
1 Center for Mind/Brain Sciences, University of Trento (Italy); 2 Department of Cognitive Biology, University of Vienna (Austria)

Detecting regularities in the world allows individuals to make sense of the countless inputs they are exposed to, and to generalize to new contexts and stimuli. This poses interesting parallels between the processing of linguistic and non-linguistic stimuli. The Artificial Grammar Learning approach has spiked research in this area on a wide range of abilities, developmental stages and species from acoustic modality in neonates and songbirds to visual pattern generalization in domestic chicks. In this workshop, we will discuss the recent developments and advancements in the field of Artificial Grammar Learning and its implication for the study of language. By bringing together researchers from different disciplines, we will host an interactive, interdisciplinary workshop that will pave the way not only for fruitful discussion but also for future collaborations and renewing work on the learning abilities across the animal kingdom and developmental stages.


Confirmed speakers

Ansgar Endress (City University London, UK) will speak about “The idiosyncrasy of learning constraints”

Judit Gervain (Université Paris Descartes, France) will speak about “The frequency-based bootstrapping of basic word order in infants and rats”

Ruth Sonnweber (Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, Leipzig, Germany) will speak about “Cross-modal processing of structural information”

Michelle Spierings (Department of Cognitive Biology, University of Vienna, Austria) will speak about “Artificial grammar learning in birds”

Elisabetta Versace (Center for Mind/Brain Science, University of Trento, Italy) will speak about Artificial grammars in visual modality: A comparative perspective”

Gesche Westphal-Fitch (Department of Cognitive Biology, University of Vienna, Austria) will speak about “Performance on a visual Artificial Grammar Learning task in hearing and deaf participants”

Ben Wilson (Newcastle University Medical School, UK) will speak about Behavioural and neuroimaging insights into structured sequence learning in humans and nonhuman primates”.


Call for abstracts

We welcome abstracts for short presentations (10-15 minutes followed by 5 minutes discussion) on how Artificial Grammar Learning across species, modalities and developmental stages can inform our knowledge and investigation on the evolution of language.

Please send an abstract that does not exceed 2 pages (excluding references) using the formatting guidelines of the main conference, to by January 12th. Notification of acceptance by January 18th (please note that the deadline for early bird registration to the conference is January 20th).