CRL Talks

Talks are every Tuesday at 4:00pm in CSB 280.

Join us in the CRL lab for happy half-hour at 3:30pm in CSB 215.

November 13

Assessing the contribution of lexical quality variables to reading comprehension
in deaf and hearing readers

Zed Sevcikova Sehyr

San Diego State University

Reading builds on a spoken language foundation and the quality of phonological forms plays a central role in reading development for hearing readers. Skilled deaf readers however are likely to have relatively coarse-grained phonological codes compared to hearing readers due to reduced access to spoken language. In what ways does the reading system successfully adapt for adult deaf readers? The Lexical Quality Hypothesis proposes that variations in the quality of word representations has consequences for reading comprehension (Perfetti, 2007). We evaluated the relative contribution of the lexical quality (LQ) variables – orthographic (spelling), phonological, and semantic (vocabulary) knowledge – to reading comprehension in adult deaf ASL signers and hearing nonsigners using regression models to predict reading skill (PIAT and Woodcock Johnson (WJ) comprehension subtests). We hypothesized that the primary predictor of reading comprehension for deaf readers lies in the quality of orthographic representations and robust orthographic-to-semantic mappings, whereas the quality of phonological representations will be strongly predictive of reading comprehension for hearing readers. The preliminary results revealed that for deaf readers, LQ variables predicted 28% of the variance in PIAT scores (after eliminating covariates such as nonverbal reasoning skills) and 18% of the variance in WJ scores. Semantics and orthography, not phonology, predicted reading comprehension for deaf readers. For hearing readers, LQ variables predicted 14% of variance in PIAT scores and 56% in WJ scores. Phonology was the strongest predictor of reading comprehension (with semantics also predicting WJ scores). We conclude that 1) strong orthographic and semantic representations, rather than precise phonological representations, predict reading skill in deaf adults and 2) the predictive strength of LQ variables may depend upon how reading comprehension is measured.

Fall Quarter 2018

October 2

The Online-processing of Long Distance Dependency Formation:
its Mechanisms and Constraints

Nayoun Kim

Northwestern University

October 9

Mapping Functions for Multilingual Word Embeddings

Ndapa Nakashole

Computer Science and Engineering, UCSD

October 16

Origins and functions of music in infancy

Samuel Mehr

Harvard University

October 23

The effect of emotional prosody on word recognition

Seung Kyung Kim


October 30

Brain dynamics supporting lexical retrieval in language production

Stéphanie K. Riès

San Diego State University

November 6

Are you committed or just interested?
Degrees of prediction in the lexical and syntactic domains

Aya Meltzer-Asscher

Tel Aviv University

November 13

Zed Sevcikova Sehyr

San Diego State University

November 20

Harinath Garudadri


November 27

Sotaro Kito

University of Warwick

Special day and time
November 29 11:00 a.m.

Simon Fischer-Baum

Rice University

December 4

Sean Trott



To subscribe to or unsubscribe from the CRL Talks mailing list, enter your name and e-mail address in the form below.

Your name:

Your e-mail address: