John C.J. Hoeks

John C.J. Hoeks
University of Groningen | RUG · Department of Communication and Information Sciences

Professor

About

92
Publications
23,465
Reads
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2,059
Citations
Citations since 2017
19 Research Items
1171 Citations
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Introduction
My research focuses on Communication and Cognition, in particular the cognitive processes involved in persuasive communication. Currently, I am investigating convincing conversations about a plant-based lifestyle and other sustainable behaviors.
Additional affiliations
January 2004 - December 2012
Rijksuniversiteit Groningen
June 1994 - July 1999
Radboud University
Position
  • PhD Student

Publications

Publications (92)
Conference Paper
Full-text available
In this study, we tested the effectiveness of a computer-based persuasive dialogue system designed to promote a plant-based diet. The production and consumption of meat and dairy has been shown to be a major cause of climate change and a threat to public health, biodiversity , animal rights and human rights. A system promoting plant-based diets was...
Article
Full-text available
Ten years ago, researchers using event-related brain potentials (ERPs) to study language comprehension were puzzled by what looked like a Semantic Illusion: Semantically anomalous, but structurally well-formed sentences did not affect the N400 component---traditionally taken to reflect semantic integration---but instead produced a P600-effect, whic...
Chapter
Full-text available
Research into the electrophysiology of language comprehension has essentially been “speakerless.” This has left three vital aspects of communication—it is social, pragmatic, and dynamic—severely underresearched. This chapter makes a case for the investigation of language users involved in active conversation and describes the problems and possibili...
Article
Full-text available
We propose a new functional-anatomical mapping of the N400 and the P600 to a minimal cortical network for language comprehension. Our work is an example of a recent research strategy in cognitive neuroscience, where researchers attempt to align data regarding the nature and time-course of cognitive processing (from ERPs) with data on the cortical o...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
In a production experiment on Bulgarian that was ba sed on a previous study on Dutch (1), we investigated the ro le of prosody when linguistic and extra-linguistic inform ation coincide or contradict. Speakers described abnormal ly colored fruits in conditions where contrastive focus and di scourse relations were varied. We found that the coinciden...
Article
Full-text available
Evidence consistently shows that men (compared to women) tend to be more attached to meat consumption, less willing to follow plant-based diets, and overall more likely to express defensiveness toward plant-based eating. This study expands knowledge on the meat-masculinity link, by examining whether negative affect toward plant-based eating helps e...
Article
Full-text available
Presenting attractive and useful health education materials in waiting rooms can help improve an organization’s health literacy responsiveness. However, it is unclear to what extent patients may be interested in health education materials, such as brochures. We conducted a three-week field study in waiting rooms of three primary care centers in Gro...
Article
Full-text available
Older adults often have limited health literacy and experience difficulties in communicating about their health. In view of the need for efficacious interventions, we compared a narrative photo story booklet regarding doctor-patient communication with a non-narrative but otherwise highly similar brochure. The photo story booklet included seven shor...
Article
Full-text available
Objectives This study compared the effects of two types of health warnings on cigarette packages: ‘narrative visual warnings’, showing an image portraying people plus a corresponding slogan that could evoke a story-like interpretation, and ‘non-narrative visual warnings’ with non-narrative content (i.e. body parts). Moreover, the mechanisms underly...
Article
Full-text available
Stories are often used in health communication because of accumulating evidence of their potential to affect people’s attitudes and health behavioral intentions. Similarity between the reader and the story’s protagonist appears to positively influence narrative persuasion, but the exact role of similarity on persuasive outcomes is debated, as some...
Data
Final model in Authors (XXXX). (TIF)
Data
Correlation matrix (N = 582). (DOCX)
Data
Narrative with male student protagonist. (DOCX)
Article
Full-text available
The role of similarity in narrative persuasion This paper presents two studies on the role of similarity in the processing of narratives. In Experiment 1 ( N = 83), female students were presented with one of two versions of a story about the severe consequences of breast cancer. In the similar version, the protagonist was a 22-year-old female stude...
Preprint
Full-text available
Recurrent neural network (RNN) models of sentence processing have recently displayed a remarkable ability to learn aspects of structure comprehension, as evidenced by their ability to account for reading times on sentences with local syntactic ambiguities (i.e., garden-path effects). Here, we investigate if these models can also simulate the effect...
Article
Full-text available
Against fundamental research! Jansen (this issue) argues for choosing societally relevant themes to guide research into language use and communication. In this response article, it is proposed that all research should focus on solving societally relevant problems, in the domains of sustainability, democracy and health. Teaching students in secondar...
Article
Full-text available
Even though health campaign designers are advised to specifically focus on triggering conversations between people about health issues, there is still a lot unknown about what aspects of a conversation may contribute to safe sex behavior and intentions. Empirical research in this field so far has mainly focused on conversational occurrence rather t...
Article
Full-text available
In this study, we examined the mechanism underlying the processing of narrative fear appeals. Participants (N = 564) read a story about a protagonist dealing with the consequences of cancer (Study 1: testicular cancer; Study 2: breast cancer; Study 3: skin cancer). Path analysis revealed that (1) attitude and behavioral intention toward performing...
Article
Full-text available
Talking to friends, family, or peers about health issues might, among other things, increase knowledge of social norms and feelings of self-efficacy in adopting a healthier lifestyle. We often see interpersonal health communication as an important mediating factor in the effects of health campaigns on health behavior. No research has been done so f...
Article
Full-text available
Objective College students are a group at risk for contracting sexually transmitted infections (STIs). While they are generally well informed about STIs, they do not consistently use condoms. An important element in preventing STIs is safer sex communication, especially with a sexual partner. This may be difficult, however, because of a lack of exp...
Data
Appendix S1. Simulation materials. Appendix S2. Derivation of word meaning representations. Appendix S3. Details of the training procedure. Appendix S4. Training on perfect word meaning representations.
Article
Recent studies suggest that health-related fotonovelas—booklets that portray a dramatic story using photographs and captions—may be effective health communication tools, especially for readers with a low level of literacy. In this experiment, effects on knowledge and behavioral intentions were assessed of a fotonovela originally developed for a Lat...
Article
Full-text available
Interpersonal communication has been shown to influence health campaign outcomes, but little is known about ways in which conversations can actually be elicited. In this correlational study, we tested the assumption that perceived complexity of the message can be a predictor of interpersonal communication. Forty participants were exposed to six dif...
Article
Successful doctor?patient communication relies on appropriate levels of communicative health literacy, the ability to deal with and communicate about health information. This article aims to describe the development of a narrative- and picture-based health literacy intervention intended to support older patients with limited health literacy when co...
Article
Sustainable Research To increase the effectiveness of communication research in terms of theoretical and practical yield, I propose a three-pronged approach: 1) Reduce the temptation to make less ethical decisions by changing publication policies; 2) Increase the power of the statistical tests, also by maximizing effect size; 3) Focus the research...
Article
Full-text available
Fear appeals are frequently used in health communication, for example in anti-smoking campaigns. Of the different theoretical models that predict and explain how fear appeals work, the Extended Parallel Process Model (EPPM; Witte, 1992) is probably used most often. However, most propositions of the EPPM were not explicitly tested, or received mixed...
Article
A systematic review was conducted to assess the available evidence for the effectiveness of interventions aiming to improve the comprehensibility of health-related documents in older adults (≥50) with different levels of health literacy. Seven databases were searched (2005 forward), and references in relevant reviews were checked. The selection pro...
Presentation
Full-text available
We present a neurocomputational model of the electrophysiology of language processing. Our model is explicit about its architecture and the computational principles and representations involved. It is effectively a recurrent neural network (of the ‘Elman’-type; [1]) that directly instantiates a parsimonious functional-anatomic processing network li...
Article
Full-text available
Current research on spoken language does not provide a consistent picture as to whether prosody, the melody and rhythm of speech, conveys a specific meaning. Perception studies show that English listeners assign meaning to prosodic patterns, and, for instance, associate some accents with contrast, whereas Dutch listeners behave more controversially...
Poster
Full-text available
A Neurocomputational Model of the N400 and the P600
Article
Full-text available
Standard Dutch and German have two reflexive forms: a weak form (zich in Dutch and sich in German) and a strong form (zichzelf in Dutch and sich selbst in German). The choice between the two reflexive forms in Dutch has been explained by the selectional restrictions of the verb, distinguishing between three verb classes: inherently reflexive verbs,...
Article
Full-text available
This study describes two eye tracking experiments investigating the processing of poetry with and without enjambments. In Experiment 1, poetic fragments with authentic prospective (syntactically incomplete) or retrospective (syntactically complete) enjambments were investigated; in Experiment 2, enjambments were created — for the purpose of the exp...
Article
Full-text available
In this study, children, young adults and elderly adults were tested in production and comprehension tasks assessing referential choice. Our aims were (1) to determine whether speakers egocentrically base their referential choice on the preceding linguistic discourse or also take into account the perspective of a hypothetical listener and (2) wheth...
Article
Full-text available
It sometimes happens that when someone asks a question, the addressee does not give an adequate answer, for instance by leaving out part of the required information. The person who posed the question may wonder why the information was omitted, and engage in extensive processing to find out what the partial answer actually means. The present study l...
Poster
Full-text available
People do not always behave as ideal interactants. When asked a question, they may bluntly say “No”, without apologizing or giving reasons. In an ERP experiment (measuring Event Related brain Potentials), we tested how language users process polite and less polite answers to different types of requests.
Poster
Full-text available
It sometimes happens that when someone asks a question, the addressee does not give an adequate answer, for instance by leaving out information. The person who posed the question may wonder why the information was omitted, and engage in extensive processing to find out what the partial answer means. In an ERP experiment (measuring Event Related bra...
Article
Full-text available
Research on Wh-questions suggests that Which questions are harder to process than Who questions (e.g., Who/Which athlete won the competition?). According to the Discourse (D)-linking Hypothesis, Which-questions differ from Who-questions in that Which questions need a link to a preceding discourse, while Who questions do not. However, this differenc...
Article
Full-text available
Previous research on pronoun resolution has identified several individual factors that are deemed to be important for resolving reference. In this paper, we argue that of these factors, as tested here, plausibility is the most important, but interacts with form markedness and structural parallelism. We investigated how listeners resolved object pro...
Article
Full-text available
Dutch children interpret reflexives correctly from age 4 on, but frequently misinterpret object pronouns as coreferring with the local subject until age 6. We investigated whether this so-called Delay of Principle B Effect (DPBE) differs by verb type. We tested 47 children between 4 and 6 years old with regular transitive verbs (e.g., to hit ) and...
Article
Full-text available
Prosody, particularly accent, aids comprehension by drawing attention to important elements such as the information that answers a question. A study using ERP registration investigated how the brain deals with the interpretation of prosodic prominence. Sentences were embedded in short dialogues and contained accented elements that were congruous or...
Poster
Full-text available
In traditional theories of language comprehension, syntactic and semantic processing are inextricably linked. This assumption has been challenged by the ’semantic illusion effect’ found in studies using event related brain potentials. Semantically anomalous sentences did not produce the expected increase in N400 amplitude but rather one in P600 amp...
Article
Full-text available
One central property of human language is that, in general, adult speakers can understand whatever they produce and adult listeners can produce whatever they understand. This observed symmetry between production and comprehension might not, however, be an inherent property of grammar.
Article
In traditional theories of language comprehension, syntactic and semantic processing are inextricably linked. This assumption has been challenged by the 'semantic illusion effect' found in studies using event related brain potentials. Semantically anomalous sentences did not produce the expected increase in N400 amplitude but rather one in P600 amp...
Article
Full-text available
This study compared eye movements during the reading of authentic prose and poetry with and without enjambment presented in their original layout and in a manipulated layout. We hypothesised that we would find differences in reading patterns on the basis of the layout in which the text was presented. We indeed found differences in reading pattern b...
Article
Full-text available
In this paper we propose a model of human sentence processing that is based on Optimality Theory (OT). In contrast to most other OT approaches to language processing, we use constraints from OT semantics rather than OT syntax to address on-line comprehension. We illustrate the workings of our model by investigating the processing of coordinated str...
Article
Full-text available
A well-known finding in the literature on language acquisition is that English-speaking children as old as 6 frequently misinterpret object pronouns as co-referring with the local referential subject. However, the percentage of errors with respect to this so-called Delay of Principle B Effect (DPBE) varies substantially across studies. Conroy, Taka...
Article
Full-text available
In this study, we tested 4-to 6-year-old Dutch children and adults on their comprehension and production of indefinite subjects and objects in universally quantified sentences. Our comprehension results show that, whereas the adults showed a strong preference for indefinite subjects to refer to specific entities, corresponding to a wide scope inter...
Article
Full-text available
During conversation, speakers and listeners act on certain basic assumptions, which enable them to communicate swiftly and seemingly effortlessly (Grice, 1975). The speaker, for instance, is supposed to say no more, but also no less than is necessary in a given conversational context (Maxim of Quantity). The present study looks at how language user...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
This paper investigates whether surprisal theory can account for differential processing difficulty in the NP-/S-coordination ambiguity in Dutch. Surprisal is es-timated using a Probabilistic Context-Free Grammar (PCFG), which is induced from an automatically annotated corpus. We find that our lexicalized surprisal model can account for the reading...
Article
Full-text available
The present ERP study investigated the effect of focus particles on Dutch sentence processing. Focus particles such as only are claimed to indicate focus constituents and can thus affect the interpretation of pitch accents during speech comprehension [1]. Our results show that contrastive pitch accents are unexpected in sentences without a focus pa...
Article
Full-text available
The present ERP study investigated the on-line interaction of prosody and information structure in Dutch. More specifically, we looked into how pitch accents, which are either congruous or incongruous with respect to the discourse context, are processed. Our results show that listeners process prosodic information immediately and check it for congr...
Article
Full-text available
Two studies investigated the effects of prosody and pragmatic context on off-line and on-line processing of sentences like John greeted Paul yesterday and Ben today. Such sentences are ambiguous between the so-called 'nongapping' reading, where John greeted Ben, and the highly unpreferred 'gapping' reading, where Ben greeted Paul. In the first expe...
Article
Full-text available
This study investigates the effect of coherence relations and accent on pronoun reference. Participants heard sentences like John saw Jeff, and Jane called him, and indicated which noun the pronoun referred to. Here, the pronoun is said to be am-biguous because it can refer either to John or to Jeff. The sentences had one of two different types of...
Article
Full-text available
Young children often give the impression that they speak or listen from thei ro wn perspective, with little or no recognition of the linguistic information that a discourse partner might be using. In relation to discourse reference, children often demonstrate insensitivity to rules that determine the use of discourse pronouns (Karmiloff-Smith 1981)...
Article
Full-text available
The aim of this study was to investigate children's production and comprehension of subject pronouns. We used picture stories to elicit referring expressions in structured discourses in a group of 4- to 7-year-old Dutch children and an adult control group. Results showed that the children overused pronouns, and even produced pronouns when these pro...
Article
Full-text available
In line with recent studies we propose a model of human sentence processing that is based on Optimality Theory (OT). Rather than explaining parsing preferences through extralinguistically motivated parsing strategies or frequencies in the hearer's linguistic environment, our model explains these preferences as the intermediate results of the increm...
Article
Full-text available
The aim of this article is to investigate whether choosing the appropriate referring expression requires taking into account the hearer's perspective, as is pre- dicted under some versions of bidirectional Optimality Theory but is unexpected under other versions. We did this by comparing the results of 25 young and 25 elderly adults on an elicitati...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
In this paper we discuss the influence of semantica lly unexpected information on the prosodic realization of contrast. For this purpose, we examine the interplay between unexpectedness and various discourse factors that h ave been claimed to enhance the accentuation of contrastive information: contrast direction, syntactic status, and discourse di...
Article
Full-text available
Markus Egg (k.m.m.egg@rug.nl) Abstract In this paper, we discuss the interplay of factors that influence the intonational marking of contrast in Dutch. In particular, we examine how prominence is expressed at the prosodic level when semantically abnormal information conflicts with contrastive information. For this purpose, we conducted a production...
Article
Lexical semantic ambiguity is the phenomenon when a word has multiple meanings (e.g. 'bank'). The aim of this event-related functional MRI study was to identify those brain areas, which are involved in contextually driven ambiguity resolution. Ambiguous words were selected which have a most frequent, dominant, and less frequent, subordinate meaning...
Article
Full-text available
Two studies investigated the effects of prosody, context and thematic fit on off-line and on-line processing of sentences like John greeted Paul yesterday and Ben today. Such sentences are ambiguous between the so-called 'nongapping' reading, where John greeted Ben, and the highly unpreferred 'gapping' reading, where Ben greeted Paul. Participants...