Cognition

  • Martine CHOMENTOWSKI (Université de Fribourg Suisse)
    Learning in French in order to learn French: from French as a foreign or second language (FLE/2) to French as a second language or as the language of schooling (FLS/FLSCO), the example of mathematical competencies
    2014, Vol. XIX-2, pp. 57-70

    In the OECD countries, children are students. The findings concerning the generally poor school results obtained by children of migrant families ask for a reorientation of French as a Foreign Language (FLE), French as a Second Language (FLS). This reorientation will be called French as a Language of Scolarity (FLSCO). The idea behind it is to allow these children a harmonious school time that can lead them towards the profession of their choice. This way all teaching matters become a way of training the FLSCO. As an axample, this article tries to highlight the educational position of  FLSCO through teaching the names of large numbers in French, which normally fall within the scope of mathematics.


  • Peter GRIGGS (Lyon 2)
    The cognitive dimension in learning foreign languages
    2002, Vol. VII-2, pp. 17-29

    The aim of this article is to show the importance of basing foreign language teaching pedagogy on a cognitive theory of learning. The article draws on John Anderson's theory of learning and is illustrated by two longitudinal studies. Learning is seen to involve two main stages :at the initial stage a procedural rule giving a specific form to a function is constructed from declarative knowledge from different sources using general problem-solving procedures ; a second phase entails the automatisation of the procedural rule and its gradual modification through processes of generalisation and discrimination. An analysis of classroom practice leads us next to re-focus the problem of instructed language learning on the compatibility between the aims of the teacher, the cognitive activity of the learner and his communicative performance and needs in the target language.


  • Déborah MÉLIGNE (INSERM Toulouse)
    ERPs and lexical access for target words and related prime words vs unrelated prime words
    2012, Vol. XVII-2, pp. 49-63

    Numerous studies have shown that the processing of a target word can be influenced by the nature of its relationship with a preceding prime word (target word’s processing being facilitated when it is related to the prime). In this study, we assessed the question of whether it is also possible to observe such priming effects even when subjects are unaware of the relationship, or even the presence of the prime itself. Secondly we compared different types of words to explore possible processing differences depending on grammatical and/or semantic classes. We expected to show a facilitation for treatment of the word when it is preceded by an identical one (whereas when both were different no facilitation could be observed), meaning that semantic processing is automatic. Moreover, if we observe any differences between nouns, action- and cognition-related verbs it could reflect a different cerebral organization according to grammatical and/or semantic characteristics.


  • Jean-Philippe RIVIÈRE (IUFM de Bretagne)
    Reading skills of French youngsters: new ways of large-scale assessing of cognitive performance
    2010, Vol. XV-1, pp. 121-144

    Every year, reading performance of about 700.000 young people is assessed in the framework of a day (JAPD, Journée d'Appel de Préparation à la Défense) organised by the French Ministry of Defense. These tests changed recently due to some constraints of test administration and the taking into account of the results of the previous version of the test. Based on the results collected over the years 2004-2008, this paper presents the methodological design of this large span evaluation of reading. This study is an occasion to moderate the binary oppositions between literate and illiterate, and to show that various more or less efficient ways of reading, characterize this activity. For some young people, the switch from schooling to active professional life implies a new relation with written language. The school, which is the main location of reading and writing solicitation, will be replaced by economical activities. For some young people, the relation with writing will be definitively distended.


  • Jean-Luc SCHWARTZ (Grenoble)
    The common language of speech perception and action: a neurocognitive perspective
    2008, Vol. XIII-2, pp. 9-22

    How do listeners extract phonetic information from the speech signal? More than 50 years after the appearance of the motor theory of speech perception, recent neurophysiological discoveries challenge the view that speech perception relies on purely auditory mechanisms and suggest that the motor system might also be crucial for speech comprehension. The aim of the present chapter is to review these findings in an attempt to define what could be the “common language of perception and action”.


  • Liliane SPRENGER-CHAROLLES (CNRS-Paris V)
    Cognitive science and the acquisition of reading and writing
    1997, Vol. II-2, pp. 35-49

    Reading (and spelling) studies conducted in the framework of 'Cognitive Sciences' are based on models which have to take into account expert reading, reading acquisition as well as acquired and developmental reading disabilities. Predictions based on these models are compared to psycholinguistic observations, to neurolinguistic investigations, and/or to simulation data. These models, which have to explain general cognitive processes, must also take into account environmental parameters. The main objective of this paper is to explain reading (and spelling) acquisition processes. We review studies on English-, German-, Spanish-, and French-speaking children. All these languages have alphabets, but differ in the transparency of their grapheme-phoneme correspondences. Results of these studies might therefore allow to distinguish between what depends on universal processes and what depends on the linguistic environment. We describe methods used in reading (and spelling) studies also because striking differences between research results may also be due to methodological problems.