We study the discovery problem faced by developmental psycholinguists, namely, to characterize the learning mechanism deployed in first language acquisition. Within our model, the psycholinguist has access to the graph of the function that maps children's linguistic data to their grammatical hypotheses. They must converge in the limit to an adequate theory of the child, in a weak sense of "adequate." It is shown that even strong hypotheses about the learning strategy embodied by the child do not suffice to render solvable the psycholinguist's task.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- General Psychology
- Applied Mathematics