Electrophysiological evidence for priming in response to words and pseudowords in first and second language

Alon Sinai, Hillel Pratt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


The study purpose was to indicate when language-specific processing first occurs and how first and second language priming processes interact. Event-related potentials were recorded from 14 normal native Hebrew speakers, in a variation of lexical decision task, to pairs of stimuli (S1, S2) in Hebrew, English, Hebrew pseudowords, and English pseudowords. Although no behavioral priming was observed, priming by pseudowords in either language affected both N400 and the late positive component of event related potential. N1 and P2 latencies were longer to S2 in semantically related pairs, indicating that language-specific processing may take place as early as auditory cortex. Different processing of first and second language was evident only in response to pseudowords.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)240-252
Number of pages13
JournalBrain and Language
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2002
Externally publishedYes


  • Auditory cortex
  • Evoked potentials
  • Priming
  • Semantic processing
  • Speech

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Neuroscience(all)


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