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The Relationship between Source Memory and Linguistic Encoding of Source: A Study of 3-6 year-olds

2012-12-01
Ogel-Balaban, Hale
Aksu-Koc, Ayhan
Alp, I. Ercan
This study aimed to explore whether the development of source memory is related to the use of linguistic markers of evidentiality. Eighty-seven 3-, 4-, 5-, and 6-year-old Turkish-speaking monolingual children participated in two source memory tasks: (1) Mode of Knowledge Acquisition Task and (2) Source Identification Task, and three language tasks (1) Direct Experience Task, (2) Inference Task and (3) Reportative Task. Results of the source memory tasks revealed lower performance for 3-year-old children compared to older children. On the Direct Experience Task, children of all ages could use the -DI inflection correctly, but in the other two language tasks younger children displayed lower performance than older children in using the correct evidentiality markers. Children's performance in using (I)mIs on the Reportative Task was found to predict their performance on the Source Identification Task. Moreover, children's performance on this source memory task was compared to English-speaking children's performance on the same task in Drummey and Newcombe's (2002) study. This comparison indicated that Turkish-speaking children show correct source identification performance at an earlier age compared to English-speaking children. The findings are discussed in terms of the development of source memory and the relation between language and cognition.