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This paper investigates the nature of native Mandarin Chinese speakers’ phonotactic knowledge via an experimental study and formal modelling of the experimental results. Results from a phonological well-formedness judgement experiment suggest that Mandarin speakers’ phonotactic knowledge is sensitive not only to lexical statistics, but also to grammatical principles such as systematic and accidental phonotactic constraints, allophonic restrictions and segment–tone co-occurrence restrictions. We employ the UCLA Phonotactic Learner to model Mandarin speakers’ phonotactic knowledge, and compare the model's well-formedness predictions with speakers’ judgements. The disparity between the model's predictions and the well-formedness ratings from the experiment indicates that grammatical principles and the lexicon are still not sufficient to explain all of the variations in the speakers’ judgements. We argue that multiple biases, such as naturalness bias, allophony bias and suprasegmental bias, are effective during phonotactic learning.
It is essential to investigate the experiences behind why adolescents start and continue to self-harm in order to develop targeted treatment and prevent future self-harming behaviours.
The aims of this study are to understand the motivations for initiating and repeating nonfatal self-harm, the different methods used between first-time and repeated self-harm and the reasons that adolescents do not seek help from health services.
Adolescents with repeated nonfatal self-harm experiences were recruited to participate in individual, semi-structured qualitative interviews. The interviews were analysed with interpretative phenomenological analysis.
We found that nonfatal self-harm among adolescents occurred comparatively early and was often triggered by specific reasons. However, the subsequent nonfatal self-harm could be causeless, with repeated self-harm becoming a maladaptive coping strategy to handle daily pressure and negative emotions. The choice of tools used was related to the ease of accessibility, the life-threatening risk and the size of the scars. Adolescents often concealed their scars on purpose, which made early identification insufficient. Peer influence, such as online chat groups encouraging self-harm by discussing and sharing self-harm pictures, could also lead to increased self-harm. The results also included participants’ opinions on how to stop nonfatal self-harm and their dissatisfaction with the current healthcare services.
The current study provides important implications both for early identification and interventions for adolescents who engage in repeated nonfatal self-harm, and for individualising treatment planning that benefits them. It is also worthwhile to further investigate how peer influence and social media may affect self-harm in adolescents.
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