Perception of Lexical Stress by English Monolinguals and Chinese-English Bilinguals: A Mouse Trajectory Analysis

Master's Thesis


This study investigated the role of lexical stress during spoken-word recognition for English monolinguals and Chinese-English bilinguals. Using an online variant of the visual world paradigm in which mouse movements were recorded instead of eye movements, the experiment inspected competition when recognizing a target word that shared an initial syllable with a competitor word except for stress. Results showed that for both monolinguals and bilinguals, unstressed competitors delayed the recognition of stressed targets but not the reverse. When the initial syllables in the recordings of the stressed and unstressed words were swapped, monolinguals exhibited symmetrical competition; however, this competition was more variable for bilinguals. This study contributes to previous research demonstrating the utility of mouse trajectory analysis for investigating the resolution of competition during spoken-word recognition; and indicates that Chinese-English bilinguals can pick up a phonological feature that is irrelevant in their native language, and it may be related to their English proficiency.


Attribute NameValues
Author Yanran Chen
Contributor Kathleen M. Eberhard, Research Director
Degree Level Master's Thesis
Degree Discipline Psychology, Research and Experimental
Degree Name Master of Arts
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Defense Date
  • 2023-05-12

Submission Date 2023-08-10
  • Psychology

  • English

Record Visibility Public
Content License
  • All rights reserved

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