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Response to Audiovisual Nonnative Phonemic Contrasts Does Not Decline in Infancy

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Date Issued:
2007
Summary:
Previous research has demonstrated that sensitivity to unimodal nonnative speech contrasts generally narrows during the first year. Although other work has demonstrated a processing advantage for multimodal stimuli, research on infants' responsiveness to nonnative contrasts so far has not examined whether concurrent auditory and visual speech information can modulate perceptual narrowing. Thus, the current study investigated the influence ofbimodally specified speech sounds on infants' sensitivity to a nonnative phonemic contrast. Six-month-old and 10- to 12-month-old infants were tested in a habituation/test procedure for discrimination of an audiovisual nonnative speech contrast (Hindi /tal dental vs. /Tal retroflex stop). Findings showed that infants at both ages exhibited evidence of discrimination following habituation to one of the speech sounds. These findings suggest that the usually observed decline in responsiveness to nonnative speech contrasts is limited to audibly specified contrasts and that concurrent visual speech information enhances the discriminability of such contrasts.
Title: Response to Audiovisual Nonnative Phonemic Contrasts Does Not Decline in Infancy.
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Name(s): Sowinski, Ryan C.
Lewkowicz, David J., Thesis advisor
Florida Atlantic University, Degree grantor
Type of Resource: text
Genre: Electronic Thesis Or Dissertation
Date Created: 2007
Date Issued: 2007
Publisher: Florida Atlantic University
Place of Publication: Boca Raton, Fla.
Physical Form: application/pdf
Extent: 44 p.
Language(s): English
Summary: Previous research has demonstrated that sensitivity to unimodal nonnative speech contrasts generally narrows during the first year. Although other work has demonstrated a processing advantage for multimodal stimuli, research on infants' responsiveness to nonnative contrasts so far has not examined whether concurrent auditory and visual speech information can modulate perceptual narrowing. Thus, the current study investigated the influence ofbimodally specified speech sounds on infants' sensitivity to a nonnative phonemic contrast. Six-month-old and 10- to 12-month-old infants were tested in a habituation/test procedure for discrimination of an audiovisual nonnative speech contrast (Hindi /tal dental vs. /Tal retroflex stop). Findings showed that infants at both ages exhibited evidence of discrimination following habituation to one of the speech sounds. These findings suggest that the usually observed decline in responsiveness to nonnative speech contrasts is limited to audibly specified contrasts and that concurrent visual speech information enhances the discriminability of such contrasts.
Identifier: FA00000835 (IID)
Degree granted: Thesis (M.A.)--Florida Atlantic University, 2007.
Collection: FAU Electronic Theses and Dissertations Collection
Note(s): Includes bibliography.
Charles E. Schmidt College of Science
Subject(s): Language acquisition
Speech perception
Perceptual learning
Psycholinguistics
Phonetics--Research
Held by: Florida Atlantic University Libraries
Persistent Link to This Record: http://purl.flvc.org/fau/fd/FA00000835
Sublocation: Digital Library
Use and Reproduction: Copyright © is held by the author with permission granted to Florida Atlantic University to digitize, archive and distribute this item for non-profit research and educational purposes. Any reuse of this item in excess of fair use or other copyright exemptions requires permission of the copyright holder.
Use and Reproduction: http://rightsstatements.org/vocab/InC/1.0/
Host Institution: FAU
Is Part of Series: Florida Atlantic University Digital Library Collections.