Cross-situational Learning of Low Frequency Words: The Role of Context Familiarity and Age of Exposure


Higher frequency has been shown to have a positive effect on the acquisition of words and other linguistic items in children. An important question that needs to be answered then is how children learn low frequency items. In this study, we investigate the acquisition of meanings for low frequency words through computational modeling. We suggest that for such words, the familiarity of the context they appear in has an important effect on their acquisition. We note that context familiarity is confounded with another factor, namely the age of exposure to a word, and hence examine the independent role of each of the two factors on word learning.

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