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Attention switching trait in recognition of Japanese sentence-final particle ne: An ERP study 1, 2 2 2, 3, 4, 5 Sachiko Kiyama , Katsuo Tamaoka , Rinus Verdonschot 4, 5 & Kalinka Timmer 1. National Center for Geriatrics and Gerontology (NCGG), Japan: ZUA [email protected] com 2. Nagoya University, Japan 3. Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS), Japan 4. Leiden Institute for Brain and Cognition (LIBC), the Netherland 5. Leiden University Center for Linguistics (LUCL), the Netherland KEYWORDS: Japanese sentence-final particle, Interpersonal function, Autistic trait, Attention switching, LPP (late positive potential) INTERPERSONAL FUNCTION OF JAPANESE SENTENCE-FINAL PARTICLE NE Japanese sentence-final particles work as pragmatic function words, such that their appropriateness cannot be decided unless contexts and/or interpersonal relationships are set. By using the most typical sentence-final particle ne, a speaker assume that hearer’s knowledge about the information is equivalent to the speaker’s, and thus assert common ground with hearer. In conversations, native Japanese speakers add the particle ne to about 10% of their utterances (Kiyama, 2005). In addition, Japanese children begin to use ne even at the age of two (e. g. , Kajikawa, Amano, & Kondo, 2004). However, autistic children/adults seldom use ne (e. g. , Watamaki, 1997). The abovementioned observations lead to the assumption that sensitivity to sentence-final particle ne may be affected by individual autistic traits. The present study conducted an event-related potential (ERP) experiment to explore native speakers’ individual differences in comprehension of Japanese sentence-final particle ne, in comparison with another commonly-used particle yo which conveys that the given information belongs to speaker. METHOD RESULTS Behavioral Data: A regression ERP Data: After principal component analysis (PCA) Twenty-four right-handed native of generic data, the mean amplitude in the 470 Japanese speakers heard short dialogs in analysis showed that the 900 ms time window for ne and the 470 -800 ms time which sentence-final particles ne and yo lower participants scored in window for yo were analyzed by utilizing a linear attention switching (i. e. , were presented at the end of the last mixed effect (LME) model (Baayen, 2008), setting skilled in attention switching) utterance, and made judgments on which is a sub-category of AQ, participant group (high/low score in AQ-switching), whether the sentence-final particles appropriate/inappropriate condition, and presented the more quickly anomalous were appropriately used or not, as particle (i. e. , yo and ne) as fixed variables, and ne and yo were rejected (ne : quickly as possible. Based on a pretest, participant and channel as random variables. p <. 01, yo : p <. 05). we manipulated appropriate and inappropriate uses of sentence-final ERPs of ne processing particles within an identical dialog: In ne condition, we Materials: found a significant Participants 1) Appropriate ne and inappropriate yo interaction of skilled in (description of speaker’s matter) app/inapp x AQ x attention switching region (p <. 05). Kondo onsen ni ikunda. I’m going to a hot spring. Honto ni onsen ga sukidane/yo You really like hot springs. 2) Appropriate yo and inappropriate ne (comment to the interlocutor’s matter). Ohiru-gohan tabeta? Did you eat lunch? Participants less-skilled in attention switching In yo condition, no significant effects concerning app/inapp factor were found. Kingo de udon tabetane/yo I ate noodle in the neighborhood. Late positive potentials (LPPs) of ne processing were observed especially in posterior region of participants with lower score in AQ switching (i. e. , skilled in attention switching). DISCUSSION REFERENCES (selected) Brown, S. B. R. E. , Steenbergen, H. Band, G. P. H. , Rover, M. , & The present ERP results suggest that native speakers with higher skill in Nieuwhnhuis, S. (2012). Functional significance of the emotionattention switching are more sensible to Japanese sentence-final particle ne, related late positive potential. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 6, 112. while attention switching trait had no significant effects on yo. Previous Zhang, W. , Lu, J. , Fang, H. , Pan, X. , Zhang, J. , & Wang, D. (2012). Late studies have observed LPP for emotion-related stimuli (Brown, et al. , 2012; positive potentials in affective picture processing during adolescence. Neuroscience Letters, 510, 88 -92. Hajcak, et al. , 2007; Zhang, et al. , 2012). The particle ne may be related to Hajcak, G. , Dunning, J. P. , & Foti, F. (2007). Neural response to emotion processing of relationship between speaker and hearer. emotional pictures is unaffected by concurrent task difficulty: An event-related potential study. Neuroscience, 121, 1156 -1162. ACKNOWLEDGMENTS This work was supported by Grants-in-Aid for Scientific Research (No. 24652080 and No. 23320106). The authors thank Nobuhiro Saito for his help in stimuli recording.