Adult and Child Semantic Neighbors of the Kroll and Potter (1984) Nonobjects Purpose The purpose was to determine the number of semantic neighbors, namely, semantic set size, for 88 nonobjects (J. F. Kroll & M. C. Potter, 1984) and determine how semantic set size related to other measures and age. Method Data were collected from 82 adults and 92 preschool ... Research Article
Research Article  |   April 01, 2009
Adult and Child Semantic Neighbors of the Kroll and Potter (1984) Nonobjects
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Holly L. Storkel
    University of Kansas, Lawrence
  • Suzanne M. Adlof
    University of Kansas, Lawrence
  • Contact author: Holly Storkel, Department of Speech-Language-Hearing: Sciences and Disorders, University of Kansas, 3001 Dole Human Development Center, 1000 Sunnyside Avenue, Lawrence, KS 66045-7555. E-mail: hstorkel@ku.edu.
Article Information
Development / Swallowing, Dysphagia & Feeding Disorders / Attention, Memory & Executive Functions / Speech, Voice & Prosody / Language / Research Articles
Research Article   |   April 01, 2009
Adult and Child Semantic Neighbors of the Kroll and Potter (1984) Nonobjects
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, April 2009, Vol. 52, 289-305. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2009/07-0174)
History: Received July 25, 2007 , Revised March 7, 2008 , Accepted July 29, 2008
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, April 2009, Vol. 52, 289-305. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2009/07-0174)
History: Received July 25, 2007; Revised March 7, 2008; Accepted July 29, 2008
Web of Science® Times Cited: 9

Purpose The purpose was to determine the number of semantic neighbors, namely, semantic set size, for 88 nonobjects (J. F. Kroll & M. C. Potter, 1984) and determine how semantic set size related to other measures and age.

Method Data were collected from 82 adults and 92 preschool children in a discrete association task. The nonobjects were presented via computer, and participants reported the first word that came to mind that was meaningfully related to the nonobject. Words reported by 2 or more participants were considered semantic neighbors. The strength of each neighbor was computed as the proportion of participants who reported the neighbor. All data are provided online in a Microsoft Excel file accompanying this article (the data file can be found accompanying this article online at http://jslhr.asha.org).

Results Results showed that semantic set size was not significantly correlated with objectlikeness ratings or object decision reaction times from J. F. Kroll and M. C. Potter (1984) . However, semantic set size was significantly negatively correlated with the strength of the strongest neighbor(s). In terms of age effects, adult and child semantic set sizes were significantly positively correlated and the majority of numeric differences were on the order of 0–3 neighbors. Comparison of actual neighbors showed greater discrepancies; however, this varied by neighbor strength.

Conclusions Semantic set size can be determined for nonobjects. Specific guidelines are suggested for using these nonobjects in future research.

Acknowledgments
This research was supported by National Institutes of Health Grants DC 08095, DC 00052, DC 05803, and HD02528. We are grateful to the following individuals for their contributions to data collection, data processing, and manuscript preparation: Teresa Brown, Deborah Christenson, Jennie Fox, Andrea Giles, Jennica Kilwein, Jill Hoover, Junko Maekawa, Shannon Rogers, Mariza Rosales, Allison Wade, and Courtney Winn.
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