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Dr Nina Kazanina


Language is constantly used by humans for sharing their needs and desires. People produce and comprehend linguistic utterances without any visible effort, yet objectively these are tasks of unprecedented computational complexity. Indeed, after more than 50 years of development the quality of machine translation and automatic speech recognition still does not compare with human performance levels. I study how the ability to comprehend language is established in children, how an adult brain processes native language in real time and how new languages are learned and represented in the brain in adulthood. To explore these questions I use a combination of psychophysical techniques and brain imaging (in particular, electroencephalography or EEG).

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Key words

  • first language acquisition
  • second or foreign language acquisition
  • speech perception
  • sentence processing
  • neurolinguistics
  • psycholinguistics