Association for Behavior Analysis International

The Association for Behavior Analysis International® (ABAI) is a nonprofit membership organization with the mission to contribute to the well-being of society by developing, enhancing, and supporting the growth and vitality of the science of behavior analysis through research, education, and practice.


First International Conference; Italy, 2001

Event Details

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Symposium #54
Language Acquisition: Natural Selection and Language Disabilities
Thursday, November 29, 2001
3:00 PM–3:50 PM
Photographs Hall
Area: DEV; Domain: Applied Behavior Analysis
Chair: Peter Harzem (Auburn University)
Discussant: Peter Harzem (Auburn University)
Abstract: The papers in this symposium consider the place of natural selection in language acquisition, and the phenomena of delayed language acquisition. The data on delayed acquisition opens up possibilities of further behavior analytic research into the development of verbal behavior.
The Onset of Language Development: Natural Selection, Adaptation, and Primary Reinforcers
MARTHA PELAEZ (Florida International University)
Abstract: Whether language is the product of natural selection is a subject of lively debate among philosophers, psycholinguists, and child developmentalists armed with arguments and counter arguments from evolutionary biology. This debate will be highlighted in the introduction of the paper. Some evidence that is needed to support the claim that language development reflects the influence of natural selection (Pinker and Bloom) will be discussed. Results of three experiments will be reported to demonstrate the reinforcing functions of maternal vocal intonations (as in motherese speech) and, maternal imitation. The functions of these maternal vocal stimuli will be discussed within the context of reinforcement, infant attention, modeling, induction, and communication.
Normal and Delayed Language Development: When Disabilities Provide Suggestions for Experimental Analyses
PAOLO MODERATO (University of Parma)
Abstract: Data on both delayed and 'normal' language development are considered and compared. It is suggested that these data, especially the data on language disabilities associated with delayed acquisition, provide significant openings for experimental analyses of these and related phenomena.
The Problem of Learning and the Transference in the Solving Problems Under Different Modes of Languages
AGUSTIN DANIEL GOMEZ FUENTES (Universidad Veracruzana), Emilio Ribes Inesta (Universidad of Guadalajara)
Abstract: .



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