The Effect of Semantic Ambiguity on Concreteness Ratings


This research was conducted to investigate how semantic ambiguity of words may influence concreteness ratings when words are presented to raters in isolation. To this end, a correlational analysis was conducted between semantic ambiguity based on Hoffman et al.’s (2013) semantic diversity measure (SemD) and the standard deviation values (SDs) of the concreteness ratings based on Brysbaert et al.’s (2013) database, for a subset of 2031 English words. It was predicted that as the ambiguity of words increases, the size of SDs of concreteness ratings for those words would also increase. In line with this prediction, a significant positive correlation was found between SemD and the SDs of concreteness ratings. This correlation suggests that ambiguous words tend to elicit more diverse ratings compared to less ambiguous words due possibly to the existence of various referents with different concreteness levels for the same word, influencing the raters’ judgments of concreteness.

Author Information
Mahdi Almajdoa, Jazan University, Saudi Arabia

Paper Information
Conference: ACP2024
Stream: Linguistics, Language & Psychology/Behavioral Science

This paper is part of the ACP2024 Conference Proceedings (View)
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To cite this article:
Almajdoa M. (2024) The Effect of Semantic Ambiguity on Concreteness Ratings ISSN: 2187-4743 – The Asian Conference on Psychology & the Behavioral Sciences 2024 Official Conference Proceedings
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Posted by James Alexander Gordon