Verbal learning – Vocabulary training in healthy persons to mimic aphasia

07/2011-12/2013               Verbal learning

In this project at RWTH Aachen University we investigated verbal learning in a group of healthy speakers and single cases with schizophrenia. Performance was assessed before, during and after acquisition of new vocabulary by means of behavioural and fMRI measures. The training was based on established procedures from aphasia therapy, in order to mimic the lexical confusion and therapeutic remediation in aphasia and therefore to better understand their condition. The method of vanishing cues was for the first time used in healthy speakers and persons with schizophrenia and neural correlates were successfully revealed. The project was funded by the Medical Faculty of the RWTH Aachen University (START, 28/11).
The approach to verbal learning was followed up at the University of Manchester (see Neuroscience-based therapy of word finding).

  • Tunkel, M., Fein, S., Pohl, A., Habel, U., Willmes, K., & Abel, S. (2014). Verbales Lernen bei Aphasie und Schizophrenie – eine kombinierte Verhaltens- und fMRT-Studie. Sprache, Stimme, Gehör, 38, Suppl. 1, e4-e6. 
  • Pohl, A., Meyer, C.M., Deckers, A., Eckmann, T., Barthel, J., Huber, W., Habel, U., Willmes, K. & Abel, S. (2017). Training-related changes of brain activation during speech production in healthy speakers – a longitudinal fMRI study. Aphasiology, 31 (5), 495-518.