English Research Paper

Emojis in Sentence Processing: An Electrophysiological Approach

Emoji 2019 - Workshop on Emoji Understanding and Applications in Social Media |


This paper discusses two multi-experiment studies using the ERP methodology to investigate neural correlates of processing linguistic emojis. The first study examined the use of wink emojis used to mark irony and found the same ERP response complex that has been found in response to word-generated irony. Contingent upon individual differences in interpretation, these emojis are processed the same way as ironic words. The second study investigated the prediction of non-face emojis substituted for nouns. When predictability was high, unexpected emojis elicited the same ERP response patterns as words. Overall, the results of these two studies suggest that emojis used linguistically are processed in the same way as words and that individuals can integrate input from multiple modalities into a holistic representation of a single utterance.