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Research Papers

Cognitive Development of Semantic Process and Mental Arithmetic in Childhood: An Event-Related Potential

Authors:

Xuan Dong ,

Department of Neuroscience
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Suhong Wang,

Department of Neuroscience
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Yilin Yang,

Department of Neurosurgery
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Yanling Ren,

Department of Neuroscience
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Ping Meng

Department of Pedology The First People’s Hospital of Changzhou, Jiangsu Province, China
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Abstract

The objective of this work is to investigate the cognitive development of semantic process and arithmetic calculation in childhood using event-related potential tools. Sixty children of three age groups (8-, 9- and 11-year-old groups) participated in the experiment. Each group included 10 girls and 10 boys. Stimuli were presented in two separate lists: semantic priming list and mental arithmetic list. Participants were instructed to decide whether the target word was a real Chinese character or not in semantic priming task and decide whether the production of the arithmetic operation (addition, subtraction, multiplication) was correct or false in mental arithmetic task. The main new observation was that the cognitive process reflected by major ERP components changes with the age growing up. In the lexical decision task, the amplitude of N400 elicited by semantic non-related target was significantly larger than that of a related target in all the children groups. The latency and amplitude of N400 component in 8-year-old group were larger than that of 11-year-old group. A similar RP component was elicited by either a Chinese single-character word or pseudo-word as reported by other authors. In mental arithmetic task, similar results were observed that the latencies of P2, N2, P3 in 8-year-group were longer than those of the 11-year-old group. These was no significant differences in amplitude across the three operation and age groups. These results suggest that semantic priming effects and mental arithmetic are developmental processes even in the early childhood. These two cognitive processes may be used to evaluate the development of language and arithmetic abilities.
DOI: http://doi.org/10.2481/dsj.6.S535
How to Cite: Dong, X. et al., (2007). Cognitive Development of Semantic Process and Mental Arithmetic in Childhood: An Event-Related Potential. Data Science Journal. 6, pp.S535–S547. DOI: http://doi.org/10.2481/dsj.6.S535
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Published on 06 Sep 2007.
Peer Reviewed

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