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Neural signatures of response planning occur midway through an incoming question in conversation.

Bögels S, Magyari L, Levinson SC - Sci Rep (2015)

Bottom Line: Combining an interactive quiz paradigm with EEG measurements in an innovative way, we show that production planning processes start as soon as possible, that is, within half a second after the answer to a question can be retrieved (up to several seconds before the end of the question).Finally, oscillation results suggest an attention switch from comprehension to production around the same time frame.This perspective from interactive language use throws new light on the performance characteristics that language competence involves.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics, Nijmegen, The Netherlands.

ABSTRACT
A striking puzzle about language use in everyday conversation is that turn-taking latencies are usually very short, whereas planning language production takes much longer. This implies overlap between language comprehension and production processes, but the nature and extent of such overlap has never been studied directly. Combining an interactive quiz paradigm with EEG measurements in an innovative way, we show that production planning processes start as soon as possible, that is, within half a second after the answer to a question can be retrieved (up to several seconds before the end of the question). Localization of ERP data shows early activation even of brain areas related to late stages of production planning (e.g., syllabification). Finally, oscillation results suggest an attention switch from comprehension to production around the same time frame. This perspective from interactive language use throws new light on the performance characteristics that language competence involves.

No MeSH data available.


Time-frequency results for a representative electrode (left posterior, see middle).Colors in all plots indicate the relative difference between raw power in the relevant conditions. In the time-frequency plots, the relative difference is given in transparent colors with the statistically significant cluster overlaid in opaque colors. Topographical plots are given for appropriate time windows and for the 10–12 Hz range. Electrodes that are significant in the time window are highlighted in white.
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f3: Time-frequency results for a representative electrode (left posterior, see middle).Colors in all plots indicate the relative difference between raw power in the relevant conditions. In the time-frequency plots, the relative difference is given in transparent colors with the statistically significant cluster overlaid in opaque colors. Topographical plots are given for appropriate time windows and for the 10–12 Hz range. Electrodes that are significant in the time window are highlighted in white.

Mentions: In a further analysis, we computed time-frequency representations of the oscillations of the EARLY and LATE questions, using the same time-locking as for the ERPs. We found that power was modulated around the alpha band (about 9–14 Hz) differentially across the two experiments (Fig. 3). In the main experiment, we found reduced alpha power at TL1 for EARLY vs. LATE questions between about 500–1500 ms after the start of the time-locking point (p < .001). At TL2 we found marginally significant reduced power in the alpha band for LATE versus EARLY questions between about 600 to 900 ms after the onset of the last word (p = .07). To summarize, in the main experiment we found reduced alpha power in both conditions right after the critical information was presented in the questions (e.g., 007). In contrast, in the control experiment where no overt production was required, no frequency effects were found at TL1. At TL2 marginally significant reduced alpha power was found for LATE vs. EARLY questions between about 800 and 1100 ms after onset of the last word (p = .06). An analysis comparing the two experiments confirmed that the reduced alpha effect at TL1 (EARLY vs. LATE) was stronger in the main experiment than in the control experiment (between about 500 and 1500 ms; p = .004), but we found no differences between the experiments at TL2. Since the reduced alpha power was not present or smaller in the control (comprehension) experiment than in the main (production) experiment, this effect also appears to be related to production preparation.


Neural signatures of response planning occur midway through an incoming question in conversation.

Bögels S, Magyari L, Levinson SC - Sci Rep (2015)

Time-frequency results for a representative electrode (left posterior, see middle).Colors in all plots indicate the relative difference between raw power in the relevant conditions. In the time-frequency plots, the relative difference is given in transparent colors with the statistically significant cluster overlaid in opaque colors. Topographical plots are given for appropriate time windows and for the 10–12 Hz range. Electrodes that are significant in the time window are highlighted in white.
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4525376&req=5

f3: Time-frequency results for a representative electrode (left posterior, see middle).Colors in all plots indicate the relative difference between raw power in the relevant conditions. In the time-frequency plots, the relative difference is given in transparent colors with the statistically significant cluster overlaid in opaque colors. Topographical plots are given for appropriate time windows and for the 10–12 Hz range. Electrodes that are significant in the time window are highlighted in white.
Mentions: In a further analysis, we computed time-frequency representations of the oscillations of the EARLY and LATE questions, using the same time-locking as for the ERPs. We found that power was modulated around the alpha band (about 9–14 Hz) differentially across the two experiments (Fig. 3). In the main experiment, we found reduced alpha power at TL1 for EARLY vs. LATE questions between about 500–1500 ms after the start of the time-locking point (p < .001). At TL2 we found marginally significant reduced power in the alpha band for LATE versus EARLY questions between about 600 to 900 ms after the onset of the last word (p = .07). To summarize, in the main experiment we found reduced alpha power in both conditions right after the critical information was presented in the questions (e.g., 007). In contrast, in the control experiment where no overt production was required, no frequency effects were found at TL1. At TL2 marginally significant reduced alpha power was found for LATE vs. EARLY questions between about 800 and 1100 ms after onset of the last word (p = .06). An analysis comparing the two experiments confirmed that the reduced alpha effect at TL1 (EARLY vs. LATE) was stronger in the main experiment than in the control experiment (between about 500 and 1500 ms; p = .004), but we found no differences between the experiments at TL2. Since the reduced alpha power was not present or smaller in the control (comprehension) experiment than in the main (production) experiment, this effect also appears to be related to production preparation.

Bottom Line: Combining an interactive quiz paradigm with EEG measurements in an innovative way, we show that production planning processes start as soon as possible, that is, within half a second after the answer to a question can be retrieved (up to several seconds before the end of the question).Finally, oscillation results suggest an attention switch from comprehension to production around the same time frame.This perspective from interactive language use throws new light on the performance characteristics that language competence involves.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics, Nijmegen, The Netherlands.

ABSTRACT
A striking puzzle about language use in everyday conversation is that turn-taking latencies are usually very short, whereas planning language production takes much longer. This implies overlap between language comprehension and production processes, but the nature and extent of such overlap has never been studied directly. Combining an interactive quiz paradigm with EEG measurements in an innovative way, we show that production planning processes start as soon as possible, that is, within half a second after the answer to a question can be retrieved (up to several seconds before the end of the question). Localization of ERP data shows early activation even of brain areas related to late stages of production planning (e.g., syllabification). Finally, oscillation results suggest an attention switch from comprehension to production around the same time frame. This perspective from interactive language use throws new light on the performance characteristics that language competence involves.

No MeSH data available.