Markus Conrad

Markus Conrad
Universidad de La Laguna | ULL · Department of Cognitive, Social and Organisational Psychology

PhD

About

86
Publications
46,898
Reads
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4,008
Citations
Additional affiliations
January 2012 - present
Universidad de La Laguna
Position
  • Juan de la Cierva Research Fellow
February 2004 - July 2011
Freie Universität Berlin
Position
  • Research Assistant
October 2002 - February 2004
Katholische Universität Eichstätt-Ingolstadt (KU)
Position
  • PhD Student

Publications

Publications (86)
Article
Full-text available
Classical linguistic theory assumes that formal aspects, like sound, are not internally related to the meaning of words. However, recent research suggests language might code affective meaning such as threat and alert sublexically. Positing affective phonological iconicity as a systematic organization principle of the German lexicon, we calculated...
Article
Language-specific orthography (i.e., letters or bigrams that exist in only one language) is known to facilitate language membership recognition. Yet the contribution of continuous sublexical and lexical statistics to language membership decisions during visual word processing is unknown. Here, we used pseudo-words to investigate whether continuous...
Preprint
Full-text available
Neurocognitive studies on the emotion-language relation report a significant influence of affective content on the level of single words. However, it is rather difficult to investigate such influence on the sentence level – partly due to a missing theoretical approach to integrate multiple affective meanings. In a previous EEG study, we used impres...
Article
Full-text available
Growing evidence suggests that colored light exposure can affect several brain functions in addition to conscious visual perception. Blue as compared to green light has especially been shown to enhance alertness and vigilance, as well as cognitive functions. However, the role of light exposure in studies using non-invasive brain stimulation remains...
Article
We compared event-related potentials during sentence reading, using impression formation equations of a model of affective coherence, to investigate the role of affective content processing during meaning making. The model of Affect Control Theory (ACT; Heise, 1979, 2007) predicts and quantifies the degree to which social interactions deflect from...
Article
Full-text available
It is often assumed that word reading proceeds automatically. Here, we tested this assumption by recording event-related potentials during a psychological refractory period (PRP) paradigm, requiring lexical decisions about written words. Specifically, we selected words differing in their orthographic neighborhood size–the number of words that can b...
Article
Full-text available
The arbitrary relation between sound and meaning is a fundamental assumption of modern linguistic theory. However, psycholinguistic literature also reports evidence for iconicity of phonological symbols. Here, we focus on phonological iconicity or sound–meaning mappings with regard to affective word content. Analyses of affective ratings for a larg...
Article
Full-text available
What determines human ratings of association? We planned this paper as a test for association strength (AS) that is derived from the log likelihood that two words co‐occur significantly more often together in sentences than is expected from their single word frequencies. We also investigated the moderately correlated interactions of word frequency,...
Article
Full-text available
Most language users agree that some words sound harsh (e.g. grotesque) whereas others sound soft and pleasing (e.g. lagoon). While this prominent feature of human language has always been creatively deployed in art and poetry, it is still largely unknown whether the sound of a word in itself makes any contribution to the word’s meaning as perceived...
Preprint
Full-text available
It is often assumed that word reading proceeds automatically. Here, we tested this assumption by recording event-related potentials during a psychological refractory period (PRP) paradigm, requiring lexical decisions about written words. Specifically, we selected words differing in their orthographic neighborhood size - the number of words that can...
Preprint
Full-text available
Most language users agree that some words sound harsh (e.g. grotesque) whereas others sound soft and pleasing (e.g. lagoon). While this prominent feature of human language has always been creatively deployed in art and poetry, it is still largely unknown whether the sound of a word in itself makes any contribution to the word’s meaning as perceived...
Article
Full-text available
We examine gender differences in the endorsement of gender-stereotypical judgments of the affective valence of social concepts. Sociological as well as social psychological theories indicate that individuals are inclined to behave in ways concordant with prevailing roles and corresponding stereotypes. Recent debates suggest gender biases in the soc...
Article
Full-text available
Language and emotions are closely linked. However, previous research suggests that this link is stronger in a native language (L1) than in a second language (L2) that had been learned later in life. The present study investigates whether such reduced emotionality in L2 is reflected in changes in emotional memory and embodied responses to L2 in comp...
Article
Full-text available
The literary genre of poetry is inherently related to the expression and elicitation of emotion via both content and form. To explore the nature of this affective impact at an extremely basic textual level, we collected ratings on eight different general affective meaning scales—valence, arousal, friendliness, sadness, spitefulness, poeticity, onom...
Article
In the present study we investigate factors shaping poetry reception at multiple levels of analysis. We use both qualitative and quantitative means for describing structural aspects of poems, scales for assessing subjective dimensions, as well as behavioral and peripheral-physiological measures. Applying such mixed analyses we tested three hypothes...
Article
Full-text available
While linguistic theory posits an arbitrary relation between signifiers and the signified (de Saussure, 1916), our analysis of a large-scale German database containing affective ratings of words revealed that certain phoneme clusters occur more often in words denoting concepts with negative and arousing meaning. Here, we investigate how such phonem...
Article
Full-text available
The concept of habitus refers to socially stratified patterns of perception, 7 classification, and thinking that are supposed to bring about specific lifestyles. Until now, 8 research on the links between stratification and lifestyles has accounted for the habitus 9 mainly in conceptual and theoretical terms, and studies directly measuring habitus...
Article
The PANIG database can be accessed here: http://bit.ly/1IhEivJ Despite flourishing research on the relationship between emotion and literal language, and despite the pervasiveness of figurative expressions in communication, the role of figurative language in conveying affect has been under-investigated. This study provides affective and psycholingu...
Article
Full-text available
We investigate the relation between general affective meaning and the use of particular phonological segments in poems, presenting a novel quantitative measure to assess the basic affective tone of a text based on foregrounded phonological units and their iconic affective properties. The novel method is applied to the volume of German poems “vertei...
Article
Full-text available
A crucial aspect of bilingual communication is the ability to identify the language of an input. Yet, the neural and cognitive basis of this ability is largely unknown. Moreover, it cannot be easily incorporated into neuronal models of bilingualism, which posit that bilinguals rely on the same neural substrates for both languages and concurrently a...
Article
Full-text available
Language-specific orthography (i.e., letters or bigrams that exist in only one language) is known to facilitate language membership recognition. Yet the contribution of continuous sublexical and lexical statistics to language membership decisions during visual word processing is unknown. Here, we used pseudo-words to investigate whether continuous...
Article
Full-text available
Reading is not only ‚cold’ information processing, but involves affective and aesthetic processes that go far beyond what current models of word recognition, sentence processing, or text comprehension can explain. To investigate such ‚hot’ reading processes, standardized instruments that quantify both psycholinguistic and emotional variables at the...
Article
Full-text available
Literature containing supra-natural, or magical events has enchanted generations of readers. When reading narratives describing such events, readers mentally simulate a text world different from the real one. The corresponding violation of world-knowledge during this simulation likely increases cognitive processing demands for ongoing discourse int...
Article
Full-text available
Reading is not only ‚cold’ information processing, but involves affective and aesthetic processes that go far beyond what current models of word recognition, sentence processing, or text comprehension can explain. To investigate such ‚hot’ reading processes, standardized instruments that quantify both psycholinguistic and emotional variables at the...
Article
Full-text available
We addressed the question of whether syllabic units of the presented language would activate words containing these syllables in the nonpresented language. In two lexical decision experiments using Spanish and German words presented to two groups of late Spanish–German and German–Spanish bilinguals and to two monolingual control groups, target word...
Article
Full-text available
Immersion in reading, described as a feeling of 'getting lost in a book', is a ubiquitous phenomenon widely appreciated by readers. However, it has been largely ignored in cognitive neuroscience. According to the fiction feeling hypothesis, narratives with emotional contents invite readers more to be empathic with the protagonists and thus engage t...
Article
Full-text available
We present a database of 858 German words from the semantic fields of authority and community, which represent core dimensions of human sociality. Words were selected based on co-occurrence profiles of representative key words for these semantic fields. All words were rated along 5 dimensions, each measured by a bipolar semantic differential scale:...
Article
Full-text available
Significance Humans use affective meanings of concepts as a source of information to automatically align social perceptions and behaviors with prevailing norms. Cohesive societies therefore require broad agreement on such meanings. Past research has yielded paradoxical findings. On the one hand, meanings of social concepts vary within societies, as...
Article
Full-text available
We investigated the interplay between arousal and valence in the early processing of affective words. Event-related potentials (ERPs) were recorded while participants read words organized in an orthogonal design with the factors valence (positive, negative, neutral) and arousal (low, medium, high) in a lexical decision task. We observed faster reac...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Stress is an emotional and social phenomenon mediated by appraisal and coping processes. Related research focused on effects of stress on different cognitive functions as attention and memory (Vedhara et al., 2000). Furthermore, stress was shown to affect communicative abilities like facial emotion expression recognition (Hänggy et al., 2010). But...
Article
Full-text available
The arbitrariness of the linguistic sign is a fundamental assumption in modern linguistic theory. In recent years, however, a growing amount of research has investigated the nature of non-arbitrary relations between linguistic sounds and semantics. This review aims at illustrating the amount of findings obtained so far and to organize and evaluate...
Article
Full-text available
We present the German adaptation of the Affective Norms for English Words (ANEW; Bradley & Lang in Technical Report No. C-1. Gainsville: University of Florida, Center for Research in Psychophysiology). A total of 1,003 Words-German translations of the ANEW material-were rated on a total of six dimensions: The classic ratings of valence, arousal, an...
Chapter
Full-text available
Anxiety is an emotional and social phenomenon mediated by appraisal and coping processes. Related research in affective neuroscience focused on effects of anxiety on different cognitive functions as attention and memory (Eysenck et al., 2007; Vedhara et al., 2000). Furthermore, anxiety was shown to affect communicative abilities like facial emotion...
Article
Full-text available
A GROWING BODY OF LITERATURE IN PSYCHOLOGY, LINGUISTICS, AND THE NEUROSCIENCES HAS PAID INCREASING ATTENTION TO THE UNDERSTANDING OF THE RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN PHONOLOGICAL REPRESENTATIONS OF WORDS AND THEIR MEANING: a phenomenon also known as phonological iconicity. In this article, we investigate how a text's intended emotional meaning, particular...
Article
Full-text available
We administered German and Spanish versions of the Neuroticism Extraversion Openness-Five-Factor Inventory personality inventory to two groups of late bilinguals (second-language learners) of these two languages. Regardless of individuals' first language, both groups scored higher on Extraversion and Neuroticism when Spanish was the test language....
Article
Full-text available
Background: A growing body of findings illustrates the importance of state-dependency in studies using brain stimulation. Objective: We aimed to investigate the effects of tDCS priming followed by rTMS applied over the right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) on emotional working memory. Methods: In a randomized single-blind within-subjects des...
Article
Full-text available
To investigate whether second language processing is characterized by the same sensitivity to the emotional content of language - as compared to native language processing - we conducted an EEG study manipulating word emotional valence in a visual lexical decision task. Two groups of late bilinguals - native speakers of German and Spanish with suff...
Article
Full-text available
We review recent evidence indicating that researchers in experimental psychology may have used suboptimal estimates of word frequency. Word frequency measures should be based on a corpus of at least 20 million words that contains language participants in psychology experiments are likely to have been exposed to. In addition, the quality of word fre...
Article
There is an ongoing debate in cognitive psychology as to whether syllables have to be seen as functional units not only for speech perception and production, but also for the process of silent reading or visual word recognition. For the present study, we used a perceptive identification task where single disyllabic 5-letter German words were briefl...
Article
Simulation data are presented for a novel computational model of visual word recognition containing syllabic representation units. The model is based on the multiple readout model MROM (Grainger & Jacobs, 1996) and it was used to simulate data from a syllable frequency experiment. The model successfully simulates the inhibitory syllable frequency e...
Article
Full-text available
Electrical scalp recordings revealed the brain's sensitivity to both lexical properties of words and their contextual fit with a previous sentence context around 400 ms after word presentation. The so-called N400 component has been suggested to reflect the cost either of target word recognition or of a postlexical process for integrating word meani...
Article
Full-text available
Over the last decade, there has been increasing evidence for syllabic processing during visual word recognition. If syllabic effects prove to be independent from orthographic redundancy, this would seriously challenge the ability of current computational models to account for the processing of polysyllabic words. Three experiments are presented to...
Article
Full-text available
The study presented here provides researchers with a revised list of affective German words, the Berlin Affective Word List Reloaded (BAWL-R). This work is an extension of the previously published BAWL (Võ, Jacobs, & Conrad, 2006), which has enabled researchers to investigate affective word processing with highly controlled stimulus material. The l...
Article
The present study examined cortical oxygenation changes during lexical decision on words and pseudowords using functional Near-Infrared Spectroscopy (fNIRS). Focal hyperoxygenation as an indicator of functional activation was compared over three target areas over the left hemisphere. A 52-channel Hitachi ETG-4000 was used covering the superior fron...
Article
In psycholinguistic research, there is still considerable debate about whether the type or token count of the frequency of a particular unit of language better predicts word recognition performance. The present study extends this distinction of type and token measures to the investigation of possible causes underlying syllable frequency effects. In...
Article
The study presented here investigated the effects of emotional valence on the memory for words by assessing both memory performance and pupillary responses during a recognition memory task. Participants had to make speeded judgments on whether a word presented in the test phase of the experiment had already been presented ("old") or not ("new"). An...
Article
In psycholinguistic research, there is still considerable debate about whether the type or token count of the frequency of a particular unit of language better predicts word recognition performance. The present study extends this distinction of type and token measures to the investigation of possible causes underlying syllable frequency effects. In...
Article
Many recent studies have demonstrated the influence of sublexical frequency measures on language processing, or called for controlling sublexical measures when selecting stimulus material for psycholinguistic studies (Aichert & Ziegler, 2005). The present study discusses which measures should be controlled for in what kind of study, and presents or...
Article
Full-text available
In order to investigate whether syllable frequency effects in visual word recognition can be attributed to phonologically or orthographically defined syllables, we designed one experiment that allowed six critical comparisons. Whereas only a weak effect was obtained when both orthographic and phonological syllable frequency were conjointly manipula...
Article
Full-text available
Empirical evidence for a functional role of syllables in visual word processing is abundant, however it remains rather heterogeneous. The present study aims to further specify the role of syllables and the cognitive accessibility of syllabic information in word processing. The first experiment compared performance across naming and lexical decision...
Article
Full-text available
We introduce the Berlin Affective Word List (BAWL) in order to provide researchers with a German database containing both emotional valence and imageability ratings for more than 2,200 German words. The BAWL was cross-validated using a forced choice valence decision task in which two distinct valence categories (negative or positive) had to be assi...
Article
We employed event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging to examine emotional valence effects on verbal recognition memory. Using a yes/no recognition task, we focussed on prefrontal cortex responses to positive, negative and neutral words. Behavioral data confirmed enhanced processing of emotional items and functional magnetic resonance ima...
Article
Full-text available
Most empirical work investigating the role of syllable frequency in visual word recognition has focused on the Spanish language, in which syllable frequency seems to produce a classic dissociation: inhibition in lexical decision tasks but facilitation in naming. In the present study, two experiments were run in German, using identical stimulus mate...