Document Type



Master of Science (MS)


Speech-Language Pathology

First Advisor's Name

Monica S. Hough

First Advisor's Committee Title

committee chair

Second Advisor's Name

Alfredo Ardila

Second Advisor's Committee Title

Committee member

Third Advisor's Name

Ellen Thompson

Third Advisor's Committee Title

Committee member


Psycholinguistics and Neurolinguistics, Semantics and Pragmatics, Speech Pathology and Audiology, Syntax

Date of Defense



This study examined comprehension of verb particle constructions in persons with aphasia (PWA) and young and older typical adults according to the semantic classes by Jackendoff (2002). The experimental task focused on the following three classes of verb particle constructions: idiomatic, directional, and aspectual verb particles. Movement of the object NP also was examined. The study involved a picture-matching task counterbalanced for each participant. The results revealed that PWAs showed slower than normal overall processing, slower processing of aspectual verb forms, and slower processing of syntactic form regardless of movement. Error analysis revealed a bias toward the meaning of the verb, particularly on aspectual verb constructions for all three groups. Accuracy data revealed no significant differences between groups although the aphasic group was less accurate in idiomatic verb forms. The results support current literature on the processing of syntactic structures in PWA.





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