Language Processing and Temporal Cognition

The project assessed the function of modal representations (mental timeline, situation simulation) during the processing of temporal information (temporal anchoring, situation type, situation duration). Our aim in the third funding period was to identify the linguistic conditions that necessitate the activation of the mental timeline, contrast modal and amodal accounts for the processing of various situation types, and investigate the influence of linguistically expressed situation duration on comprehension. By examining the function of non-linguistic factors in comprehension, the project contributed to the development of a comprehensive model of semantic processing.


  • von Sobbe, L., Maienborn, C., Reiber, F., Scheifele, E. & Ulrich, R. (2021). Speed or duration? Effects of implicit stimulus attributes on perceived duration. Journal of Cognitive Psychology 33(8), 877-898. https://doi.org/10.1080/20445911.2021.1950736.
  • von Sobbe, L., Ulrich, R., Gangloff, L., Scheifele, E. & Maienborn, C. (2021). Is rushing always faster than strolling? A reaction time study on the processing of sentences containing manner of motion verbs. Acta Psychologica 221, 103428. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.actpsy.2021.103428.
  • von Sobbe, L., Scheifele, E., Maienborn, C. & Ulrich, R. (2019). The space–time congruency effect: A meta‐analysis. Cognitive Science 43(1), e12709. https://doi.org/10.1111/cogs.12709.
  • Scheifele, E., Eikmeier, V., Alex-Ruf, S., Maienborn, C. & Ulrich, R. (2018). A replication of “Processing time shifts affects the execution of motor responses (Sell & Kaschak, 2011; Experiment 1)”. The Quantiative Methods for Psychology 14(1), 8-11. doi: 10.20982/tqmp.14.1.r008.
  • De la Vega, I., Eikmeier, V., Ulrich, R. & Kaup, B. (2016). The mental timeline in a crossed-hands paradigm: A matter of instruction. Experimental Psychology 63, 326-332. doi: 10.1027/1618-3169/a000342.
  • Eikmeier, V., Alex-Ruf, S., Maienborn, C., Schröter, H. & Ulrich, R. (2016). The mental timeline during the processing of linguistic information. In B. Lewandowska-Tomaszczyk (Ed.), Conceptualizations of Time (pp. 103-122). Amsterdam: Benjamins.
  • Eikmeier, V., Alex-Ruf, S., Maienborn, C. & Ulrich, R. (2015). How strongly linked are mental time and space along the left-right axis? Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition 41, 1878-1883. doi: 10.1037/xlm0000129.
  • Eikmeier, V., Hoppe, D. & Ulrich, R. (2015). Response mode does not modulate the space–time congruency effect: Evidence for a space–time mapping at a conceptual level. Acta Psychologica 156, 162-167. doi: 10.1016/j.actpsy.2014.10.008.
  • Maienborn, C., Alex-Ruf, S., Eikmeier, V. & Ulrich, R. (2015). Do we map remembrances to the left/back and expectations to the right/front of a mental timeline? Space-time congruency effects with retrospective and prospective verbs. Acta Psychologica 156, 168-178.
  • Ulrich, R., Maienborn, C. & Kaup, B. (2015). Understanding the meaning of words and sentences: The role of non-linguistic processes. Acta Psychologica 156, 97.
  • Ulrich, R. & Miller, J. (2015). p-hacking by post hoc selection with multiple opportunities: Detectability by skewness test?: Comment on Simonsohn, Nelson, and Simmons (2014). Journal of Experimental Psychology: General 144, 1137-1145.
  • Ulrich, R., Schröter, H., Leuthold, H. & Birngruber, T. (2015). Automatic and controlled stimulus processing in conflict tasks: Superimposed diffusion processes and delta functions. Cognitive Psychology 78, 148-174.
  • Alex-Ruf, S. (2014). Simulating events. The empirical side of the event-state distinction. Cognitive Processing 15, S29-S30.
  • Eikmeier, V., Schröter, H., Maienborn, C., Alex-Ruf, S. & Ulrich, R. (2013). Dimensional overlap between time and space. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review 20, 1120-1125. doi: 10.3758/s13423-013-0431-2.
  • Ulrich, R., Eikmeier, V., de la Vega, I., Ruiz Fernández, S., Alex-Ruf, S. & Maienborn, C. (2012). With the past behind and the future ahead: Back-to-front representation of past and future sentences. Memory & Cognition 40, 483-495. doi: 10.3758/s13421-011-0162-4.
  • Ruiz Fernández, S., Rahona, J. J., Hervás, G., Vázquez, C. & Ulrich, R. (2011). Number magnitude determines gaze direction: Spatial-numerical association in a free-choice task. Cortex 47, 617-620. doi:10.1016/j.cortex.2010.10.006.
  • Ulrich, R. & Maienborn, C. (2010). Left-right coding of past and future in language. The mental timeline during sentence processing. Cognition 117, 126-138.