BASIC ASSUMPTIONS

Here at the Word Lab, we are interested in studying the mental lexicon and the systems which shape and guide the processes of word recognition and word access. Our long-term goal is to identify and characterize the scientific mechanisms specific to our principal areas of research. You can read on to find out more about these projects below.

  • Lexical units: These are linguistic forms that speakers are required to learn. There are several types of lexical units -  the radicals and affixes that constitute the morphological structures, and  all units (words or syntactic expressions) that are subject to a process of lexicalization.

    • Morphological Constituents:  The units that occur within the morphological structure, i.e., radicals and affixes.

      • Root: The morphological constituents that occupy the most embedded position.

        • Simplex Roots: These roots cannot be analyzed further.

          • Vernacular Roots: These roots only occur in simplex words.

          • Neoclassical Roots: These roots only occur in complex words.

      • Complex roots: These are analysable units, which must include a single radical and other units (affixed or other radicals).

        • Lexicalized Roots:  These are morphological structures that have loss their compositionality.

        • ​Compositional Roots:  These are morphological structures resulting from a morphological process of word formation. Their structure and interpretation are integrally defined by that process and by the nature of the morphological constituents rather than the root.

      • Affixes: They are morphological constituents. Several types of affixes occur in morphological structures, defined by the relationship they establish with the base with which they are associated.

        • Specifier Affixes: They provide the information asked for by the base with which they are associated.

          • Morphological Specifiers: They reveal the thematic class to which the root belongs.

          • ​Morphosyntactic Specifiers: They add syntactically relevant information to the theme and are not present in the lexical specification of the root.

        • Derivational Affixes: They are responsible for the formation of complex roots by themselves being the nucleus of the structure.

          • Modification Affixes: They are also responsible for the formation of complex roots, but are not the nucleus of the structure.

            • Prefixes

            • ​Evaluative Suffixes

      • Stem

      • Word

  • Lexical units: These are linguistic forms that speakers are required to learn. There are several types of lexical units -  the radicals and affixes that constitute the morphological structures, and  all units (words or syntactic expressions) that are subject to a process of lexicalization.

    • Morphological Constituents:  The units that occur within the morphological structure, i.e., radicals and affixes.

      • Root: The morphological constituents that occupy the most embedded position.

        • Simplex Roots: These roots cannot be analyzed further.

          • Vernacular Roots: These roots only occur in simplex words.

          • Neoclassical Roots: These roots only occur in complex words.

      • Complex roots: These are analysable units, which must include a single radical and other units (affixed or other radicals).

        • Lexicalized Roots:  These are morphological structures that have loss their compositionality.

        • ​Compositional Roots:  These are morphological structures resulting from a morphological process of word formation. Their structure and interpretation are integrally defined by that process and by the nature of the morphological constituents rather than the root.

      • Affixes: They are morphological constituents. Several types of affixes occur in morphological structures, defined by the relationship they establish with the base with which they are associated.

        • Specifier Affixes: They provide the information asked for by the base with which they are associated.

          • Morphological Specifiers: They reveal the thematic class to which the root belongs.

          • ​Morphosyntactic Specifiers: They add syntactically relevant information to the theme and are not present in the lexical specification of the root.

        • Derivational Affixes: They are responsible for the formation of complex roots by themselves being the nucleus of the structure.

          • Modification Affixes: They are also responsible for the formation of complex roots, but are not the nucleus of the structure.

            • Prefixes

            • ​Evaluative Suffixes

      • Stem

      • Word