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Inefficient understanding of non-factive mental verbs with social aspect in adults: comparison to cognitive factive verb processing

Authors Nazlidou E, Moraitou D, Natsopoulos D, Papaliagkas V, Masoura E, Papantoniou G

Received 20 February 2018

Accepted for publication 14 August 2018

Published 10 October 2018 Volume 2018:14 Pages 2617—2631


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Roger Pinder

Elena-Ioanna Nazlidou,1 Despina Moraitou,1 Demetrios Natsopoulos,2 Vasileios Papaliagkas,1 Elvira Masoura,1 Georgia Papantoniou3

1Lab of Psychology, Department of Cognitive and Experimental Psychology, School of Psychology, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Hellas, Greece; 2School of Psychology, University of Cyprus, Nicosia, Cyprus; 3Department of Early Childhood Education, University of Ioannina, Hellas, Greece

Mental verbs denote inner mental states and are an important link between language and Theory of Mind ability conceptualized as mental state understanding. Non-factive mental verbs denote an obligation or intention and constitute a discrete class of mental verbs which are characterized by their social aspect. This study aimed to examine adults’ ability to understand non-factive mental verbs with the social aspect as compared to cognitive factive mental verbs which denote a true event.
Methods: A total of 94 participants, aged 18–95 years, were examined using two tasks measuring non-factive and factive verb processing, respectively, and a working memory test.
Results: The results indicated that non-factive verbs process is at a significantly lower level than those of cognitive factives.
Conclusion: The inspection of the way adapted to process the non-factive verbs denoting obligation or intention, as well as the confirmation of a unifactorial structure of the task developed to measure non-factives’ processing, showed that adults have a common pattern of non-factive mental verb understanding, which is based on heuristic ways of thinking and is not affected by working memory capacity and age.

Keywords: affirmation/negation, cognitive factive mental verbs, heuristic ways of thinking, non-factive mental verbs, verbs denoting obligation or intention

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