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Trends in Language and Brain research




What specific mechanisms enable humans to store linguistic signs associated with both concrete and abstract words? How is the formation of abstract concepts explained, and what role does language usage play in this process? Why can a child effortlessly learn a vocabulary of tens of thousands of meaningful words, often grasping the meaning of novel words after just one single exposure in meaningful contexts? In what ways does language shape our perception of the external world? Which processes are involved in language acquisition under sensory deprivation, such as blindness? How do brain lesions impact the structural organization of language?

These and similar questions have long driven interest in language studies. Although the long tradition of linguistics has attempted to answer these questions, it is only recently that interdisciplinary approaches in linguistics, psychology, computational science and biology have started to provide more comprehensive answers. This seminar aims to introduce these topics by 1) presenting classical and modern cognitive and neuroscientific research streams, 2) examining and evaluating linguistic explanations of linguistic phenomena, and 3) developing new explanatory approaches based on brain-constrained network models of language and communication, to imitate and explain the formation of language circuits within neural structure and functions. In this context, participants will gain several practical insights into how neurocomputational brain models can be trained, and tested for simulating language learning processes, including the exploration of language deficits induced by virtual lesions in these models.

Hickok, G., Small, S. L., & eds. (Eds.). (2016). Neurobiology of Language. Amsterdam: Elsevier.
Pulvermüller, F., Tomasello, R., Henningsen-Schomers, M.R., Wenneker, T. (2021) Biological constraints on neural network models of cognitive function. Nat Rev Neurosci 22, 488–5
Binder, J. R. & Desai, R. H. The neurobiology of semantic memory. Trends Cogn. Sci. 15, 527–536 (2011).
Constant, M., Pulvermüller, F. Tomasello, R. (2023). Brain-constrained neural modeling explains fast mapping of words to meaning. Cerebral Cortex, bhad00. doi: 10.1093/cercor/bhad007
Tomasello, R., Garagnani, M., Wennekers, T., Pulvermüller, F. 2019. Recruitment of visual cortex for language processing in blind individuals is explained by Hebbian learning. Scientific Reports 9(1):3579

Weitere Angaben

Ort: 69/E23: Mi. 10:00 - 12:00 (6x), 35/E16: Mi. 10:00 - 12:00 (6x), 35/E23-E24: Mi. 10:00 - 12:00 (1x), 93/E44: Mi. 12:00 - 14:00 (6x) Mittwoch, 17.04.2024 12:00 - 14:00, 94/E01 - E-Prüf-Raum: Mittwoch, 10.07.2024 14:00 - 16:00, 94/E03 - E-Prüf-Raum: Mittwoch, 10.07.2024 14:00 - 16:00, 94/E06 - E-Prüf-Raum: Mittwoch, 10.07.2024 14:00 - 16:00
Zeiten: Mi. 10:00 - 12:00 (wöchentlich), Ort: 69/E23, 35/E16, 35/E23-E24, Mi. 12:00 - 14:00 (zweiwöchentlich, ab 24.04.2024), Ort: 93/E44, Termine am Mittwoch, 17.04.2024 12:00 - 14:00, Mittwoch, 10.07.2024 14:00 - 16:00, Ort: 94/E01 - E-Prüf-Raum, 94/E03 - E-Prüf-Raum, 94/E06 - E-Prüf-Raum
Erster Termin: Mittwoch, 03.04.2024 10:00 - 12:00, Ort: 69/E23
Veranstaltungsart: Seminar (Offizielle Lehrveranstaltungen)
ECTS-Punkte: 6
Art der Durchführung: Hybrid-Sitzungen ohne Video-Aufzeichnung (Teilnahme in Präsenz oder per Videokonferenz/Livestream) [hybrid]


  • Veranstaltungen > Cognitive Science > Bachelor-Programm
  • Veranstaltungen > Cognitive Science > Master-Programm
  • Courses in English > Human Sciences (e.g. Cognitive Science, Psychology)