• Reiko Mazuka

  • Research Professor
  • Psychology and Neuroscience
  • Fax: (919) 660-5726
  • Homepage
  • Curriculum Vitae
  • Overview

    Language acquisition and psycholinguistics. In particular, she is interested in the development and consequences of acquiring very different types of languages. The research has taken a cross-linguistic approach between English and Japanese, and her current research involves the following three areas: (1) study of sentence comprehension strategies by adult and child speakers of Japanese and English; (2) cross- linguistic study of infants' speech perception; and (3) influence of acquiring language specific categories on cognition.
  • Specialties

    • Developmental Psychology
  • Faculty Mentor

    Language Acquisition
  • Research Description

    The purpose of our research is to shed light on our understanding of human brain development by investigating the process of acquisition of language skills, specifically in relation to phonological development. Since the sound system of a language is one of the first things infants learn, an examination of the initial stages of phonological acquisition can provide critical insight into how the human brain is structured to learn a language. In particular, as language prosody is an essential (perhaps the critical) key by which children first make sense of the structures of their languages, our program of research is designed to utilize the latest knowledge and technologies (such as Near Infrared Spectroscopy) to ascertain the course of development by which specific prosodic phenomena are naturally acquired.
  • Current Projects

    Characteristics of Japanese infant-directed speech, Acquisition of quantity-based phonemic categories , Role of linguistic markedness and input frequency on infants' acquisition of phonemic categories, Role of prosody on children and adults' sentence comprehension , Executive function and children's sentence processing, Inhibition function and sentence processing
  • Areas of Interest

    infant speech perception
    phonological development
    prosody of Japanese
    role of executive function on language acquisition
    individual differences in infants' abiliy to learn language
  • Education

      • PhD,
      • Cornell University,
      • 1990
      • M.S.,
      • Linguistics,
      • University of Edinburgh (Scotland),
      • 1984
      • MA,
      • Department of Psychology,
      • Nagoya University,
      • 1983
  • Selected Publications

      • Mazuka, R..
      • 1998.
      • The Development of Language Processing Strategies: A cross-linguistic study between Japanese and English.
      • Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
      • Mazuka, R., Nagai N. (Eds.).
      • 1995.
      • Japanese Sentence Processing.
      • Lawrence Erlbaum.
      • Mazuka, R., Itoh, K., Kondo, T..
      • 2002.
      • Cost of scrambling in Japanese sentence processing.
      • .
      • Choi, Y., Mazuka, R., Akahane-Yamada, R..
      • 2001.
      • Korean and Japanese children’s production of English /l/ and /r/.
      • .
      • Mazuka, R..
      • 1996.
      • Can a grammatical parameter be set before the first word? Prosodic contributions to early setting of a grammatical parameter.
      • .
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  • PhD Students

    • Youngon Choi
      • 2003


Reiko Mazuka