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ISSN
0898-929X
E-ISSN
1530-8898
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4.69

Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience

March 2021, Vol. 33, No. 3, Pages 390-401
(doi: 10.1162/jocn_a_01657)
© 2020 Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Individual Differences in the Neural Localization of Relational Networks of Semantic Concepts
Article PDF (900.28 KB)
Abstract
Semantic concepts relate to each other to varying degrees to form a network of zero-order relations, and these zero-order relations serve as input into networks of general relation types as well as higher order relations. Previous work has studied the neural mapping of semantic concepts across domains, although much work remains to be done to understand how the localization and structure of those architectures differ depending on various individual differences in attentional bias toward different content presentation formats. Using an item-wise model of semantic distance of zero-order relations (Word2vec) between stimuli (presented both in word and picture forms), we used representational similarity analysis to identify individual differences in the neural localization of semantic concepts and how those localization differences can be predicted by individual variance in the degree to which individuals attend to word information instead of pictures. Importantly, there were no reliable representations of this zero-order semantic relational network when looking at the full group, and it was only through considering individual differences that a stable localization difference became evident. These results indicate that individual differences in the degree to which a person habitually attends to word information instead of picture information substantially affects the neural localization of zero-order semantic representations.