Language Acquisition Device

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Language Acquisition Device (LAD)

a hypothesized structure suggested by CHOMSKY (1962) as being innate in human beings and enabling them to easily acquire language. He bases his hypothesis on the observation that language is acquired apparently without effort in the first few years of life and the child can compose novel sentences never previously heard. The proposal is that humans have an innate predisposition to understand grammatical relationships, extract the ‘rules’ from the language they hear, and then use these in forming their own verbalizations. Not all psycholinguists agree with Chomsky s proposal, the most famous antagonist being the behaviourist psychologist B.F. Skinner (Verbal Behaviour, 1957), for whom ‘learning’ is the only explanation for language acquisition.
Collins Dictionary of Sociology, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2000
References in periodicals archive ?
His theory of Language Acquisition Device or LAD in the brain was an iconoclastic idea in the field of linguistics in the 1959.
The innate component of language in human beings is called the Language Acquisition Device / Universal Grammar (LAD/UG).
Coverage includes an historical overview of the study of the origin and evolution of language; Logan's development of the Extended Mind Model; a critique of Noam Chomsky's notion of the hard-wiring of the Universal Grammar and the Language Acquisition Device, from the perspective of the Extended Mind Model; a synthesis of the Extended Mind Model with other approaches, among them the work of Andy Clark, Ray Jackendoff, and John Schumann; and an exploration of the relationship of language and culture and the parallels that can be drawn between the two phenomena.

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