This article explores how multiple linguistic cues interact in predictive processing among second language (L2) learners. In a visual-world eye-tracking experiment, we investigated whether learners of German use case and prosody cues together to assign thematic roles and predict post-verbal arguments. During the experiment, participants listened to subject-first and object-first sentences that contained (1) case cues only, or (2) both case and prosody. The results showed that the learners successfully predicted post-verbal arguments on the basis of lexical-semantic information but were less successful in using case cues. However, prediction success increased when both case and prosody were present, suggesting that predictive processing is supported by prosodic cues. Additionally, results show that higher proficiency was associated with faster processing and a greater ability to generate predictions. We conclude that the presence of cue coalitions allows L2 learners to process information more efficiently, and that the L2 processor can exploit the additive use of cues for prediction.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Linguistics and Language