Many studies have shown that verb inflections are difficult to produce for agrammatic aphasic speakers: they are frequently omitted and substituted. The present article gives an overview of our search to understanding why this is the case. The hypothesis is that grammatical morphology referring to the past is selectively impaired in agrammatic…
Jonkers, Roel; Bastiaanse, Roelien
Many studies reveal effects of verb type on verb retrieval, mainly in agrammatic aphasic speakers. In the current study, two factors that might play a role in action naming in anomic aphasic speakers were considered: the conceptual factor instrumentality and the lexical factor name relation to a noun. Instrumental verbs were shown to be better…
Edwards, Susan; Knott, Raymond
Reports on research to develop a descriptive framework capable of revealing relevant linguistic features of aphasic speech. Spontaneous speech samples collected from aphasic and normal speakers in dyadic conversational settings and from monologic picture descriptions are transcribed; lexical, phrasal and causal elements are coded and quantified.…
Albustanji, Yusuf M.; Milman, Lisa H.; Fox, Robert A.; Bourgeois, Michelle S.
The studies of agrammatism show that not all morpho-syntactic elements are impaired to the same degree and that some of this variation may be due to language-specific differences. This study investigated the production of morpho-syntactic elements in 15 Jordanian-Arabic (JA) speaking individuals with agrammatism and 15 age-matched neurologically…
Lee, Jiyeon; Yoshida, Masaya; Thompson, Cynthia K.
Purpose: Grammatical encoding (GE) is impaired in agrammatic aphasia; however, the nature of such deficits remains unclear. We examined grammatical planning units during real-time sentence production in speakers with agrammatic aphasia and control speakers, testing two competing models of GE. We queried whether speakers with agrammatic aphasia…
Beckley, Firle; Best, Wendy; Johnson, Fiona; Edwards, Susan; Maxim, Jane
The application of Conversation Analysis (CA) to the investigation of agrammatic aphasia reveals that utterances produced by speakers with agrammatism engaged in everyday conversation differ significantly from utterances produced in response to decontextualised assessment and therapy tasks. Early studies have demonstrated that speakers with agrammatism construct turns from sequences of nouns, adjectives, discourse markers and conjunctions, packaged by a distinct pattern of prosody. This article presents examples of turn construction methods deployed by three people with agrammatism as they take an extended turn, in order to recount a past event, initiate a discussion or have a disagreement. This is followed by examples of sequences occurring in the talk of two of these speakers that result in different, and more limited, turn construction opportunities, namely “test” questions asked in order to initiate a new topic of talk, despite the conversation partner knowing the answer. The contrast between extended turns and test question sequences illustrates the effect of interactional context on aphasic turn construction practices, and the potential of less than optimal sequences to mask turn construction skills. It is suggested that the interactional motivation for test question sequences in these data are to invite people with aphasia to contribute to conversation, rather than to practise saying words in an attempt to improve language skills. The idea that test question sequences may have their origins in early attempts to deal with acute aphasia, and the potential for conversation partnerships to become “stuck” in such interactional patterns after they may have outlived their usefulness, are discussed with a view to clinical implications. PMID:23848370
Abuom, Tom O.; Shah, Emmah; Bastiaanse, Roelien
For this study, sentence comprehension was tested in Swahili-English bilingual agrammatic speakers. The sentences were controlled for four factors: (1) order of the arguments (base vs. derived); (2) embedding (declarative vs. relative sentences); (3) overt use of the relative pronoun "who"; (4) language (English and Swahili). Two…
Albustanji, Yusuf Mohammed
Agrammatism is a frequent sequela of Broca's aphasia that manifests itself in omission and/or substitution of the grammatical morphemes in spontaneous and constrained speech. The hierarchical structure of syntactic trees has been proposed as an account for difficulty across grammatical morphemes (e.g., tense, agreement, and negation). Supporting…
Wambaugh, J L; Thompson, C K
The stimulus and response generalization effects of training wh-interrogative production were examined in 4 agrammatic Broca's aphasic subjects using a multiple baseline design across behaviors and subjects. Throughout treatment, response generalization to untrained questions and stimulus generalization to several nontraining conditions were assessed. Variable response generalization to untrained exemplars of trained wh-interrogative forms and little generalization to grammatically different wh constructions occurred. Stimulus generalization to only one of three conditions was noted. However, generalization treatment involving sequential modification of training across conditions was found to be effective in facilitating generalization to an additional stimulus condition for 2 of the 4 subjects.
Järvelin, Antti; Juhola, Martti
The performance of eight machine learning classifiers were compared with three aphasia related classification problems. The first problem contained naming data of aphasic and non-aphasic speakers tested with the Philadelphia Naming Test. The second problem included the naming data of Alzheimer and vascular disease patients tested with Finnish version of the Boston Naming Test. The third problem included aphasia test data of patients suffering from four different aphasic syndromes tested with the Aachen Aphasia Test. The first two data sets were small. Therefore, the data used in the tests were artificially generated from the original confrontation naming data of 23 and 22 subjects, respectively. The third set contained aphasia test data of 146 aphasic speakers and was used as such in the experiments. With the first and the third data set the classifiers could successfully be used for the task, while the results with the second data set were less encouraging. However, based on the results, no single classifier performed exceptionally well with all data sets, suggesting that the selection of the classifier used for classification of aphasic data should be based on the experiments performed with the data set at hand.
Colaco, Dora; Mineiro, Ana; Leal, Gabriela; Castro-Caldas, Alexandre
Literature suggests that illiterate subjects are unaware of the phonological structure of language. This fact may influence the characteristics of aphasic speech, namely the structure of paraphasias. A battery of tests was developed for this study to be used with aphasic subjects (literate and illiterate), in order to explore this topic in more…
Burchert, F.; Swoboda-Moll, M.; Bleser, R.D.
The aim of the present paper was to investigate whether German agrammatic production data are compatible with the Tree-Pruning-Hypothesis (TPH; Friedmann & Grodzinsky, 1997). The theory predicts unidirectional patterns of dissociation in agrammatic production data with respect to Tense and Agreement. However, there was evidence of a double…
Preisig, Basil C; Eggenberger, Noëmi; Zito, Giuseppe; Vanbellingen, Tim; Schumacher, Rahel; Hopfner, Simone; Gutbrod, Klemens; Nyffeler, Thomas; Cazzoli, Dario; Annoni, Jean-Marie; Bohlhalter, Stephan; Müri, René M
The human turn-taking system regulates the smooth and precise exchange of speaking turns during face-to-face interaction. Recent studies investigated the processing of ongoing turns during conversation by measuring the eye movements of noninvolved observers. The findings suggest that humans shift their gaze in anticipation to the next speaker before the start of the next turn. Moreover, there is evidence that the ability to timely detect turn transitions mainly relies on the lexico-syntactic content provided by the conversation. Consequently, patients with aphasia, who often experience deficits in both semantic and syntactic processing, might encounter difficulties to detect and timely shift their gaze at turn transitions. To test this assumption, we presented video vignettes of natural conversations to aphasic patients and healthy controls, while their eye movements were measured. The frequency and latency of event-related gaze shifts, with respect to the end of the current turn in the videos, were compared between the two groups. Our results suggest that, compared with healthy controls, aphasic patients have a reduced probability to shift their gaze at turn transitions but do not show significantly increased gaze shift latencies. In healthy controls, but not in aphasic patients, the probability to shift the gaze at turn transition was increased when the video content of the current turn had a higher lexico-syntactic complexity. Furthermore, the results from voxel-based lesion symptom mapping indicate that the association between lexico-syntactic complexity and gaze shift latency in aphasic patients is predicted by brain lesions located in the posterior branch of the left arcuate fasciculus. Higher lexico-syntactic processing demands seem to lead to a reduced gaze shift probability in aphasic patients. This finding may represent missed opportunities for patients to place their contributions during everyday conversation.
Middleton, Erica L.; Schwartz, Myrna F.
We investigated the influence of phonological neighborhood density (PND) on the performance of aphasic speakers whose naming impairments differentially implicate phonological or semantic stages of lexical access. A word comes from a dense phonological neighborhood if many words sound like it. Limited evidence suggests that higher density facilitates naming in aphasic speakers, as it does in healthy speakers. Using well controlled stimuli, Experiment 1 confirmed the influence of PND on accuracy and phonological error rates in two aphasic speakers with phonological processing deficits. In Experiments 2 and 3, we extended the investigation to an aphasic speaker who is prone to semantic errors, indicating a semantic deficit and/or a deficit in the mapping from semantics to words. This individual had higher accuracy, and fewer semantic errors, in naming targets from high versus low density neighborhoods. It is argued that the results provide strong support for interactive approaches to lexical access, where reverberatory feedback between word- and phoneme-level lexical representations not only facilitates phonological level processes but also privileges the selection of a target word over its semantic competitors. PMID:21718214
MacWhinney, B; Osmán-Sági, J
How do aphasics deal with the rich inflectional marking available in agglutinative languages like Hungarian? For the Hungarian noun alone, aphasics have to deal with over 15 basic case markings and dozens of possible combinations of these basic markings. Using the picture description task of MacWhinney and Bates (1978), this study examined the use of inflectional markings in nine Broca's and five Wernicke's aphasic speakers of Hungarian. The analysis focused on subject, direct object, indirect object, and locative nominal arguments. Compared to normals, both groups had a much higher rate of omission of all argument types. Subject ellipsis was particularly strong, as it is in normal Hungarian. There was a tendency for Broca's to omit the indirect object and for Wernicke's to omit the direct object. Across argument types, Wernicke's had a much higher level of pronoun usage than did Broca's. Broca's also showed a very high level of article omission. Compared to similar data reported by Slobin (this issue) for Turkish, the Hungarian aphasics showed an elevated level of omission of case markings. Addition errors were quite rare, but there were 14 substitutions of one case marking for another. These errors all involved the substitution of some close semantic competitor. There were no errors in the basic rules for vowel harmony or morpheme order. Overall the results paint a picture of a group of individuals whose grammatical abilities are damaged and noisy, but still largely functional. Neither the view of Broca's as agrammatic nor the view of Wernicke's as paragrammatic was strongly supported.
Ruiter, Marina B; Rietveld, Toni C M; Hoskam, Vera; VAN Beers, Marijn M A
Delivering aphasia therapy via telecommunication may provide a means to deliver intensive therapy in a cost-effective way. Teletherapy, remotely-administered (language) treatment, may support the repetitive drill practices that people with chronic aphasia need to perform when learning to compensate for their lasting language difficulties. The use of teletherapy may allow speech and language pathologists (SLPs) to focus in-person sessions more strongly on the generalisation of therapy effects to daily life. This single subject study is an investigation whether a teletherapy application called e-REST meets the criteria of accessibility, user-friendliness, as well as effectiveness. e-REST, the teletherapy version of the Dutch and adapted Reduced Syntax Therapy, teaches chronically aphasic speakers of Dutch who experience difficulties in sentence production to convey their messages in a kind of telegraphic style. The results obtained suggest that it is reasonable to conduct a larger study into the user-friendliness, accessibility, effectiveness, and cost-effectiveness of e-REST.
RUITER, MARINA B.; RIETVELD, TONI C.M.; HOSKAM, VERA; VAN BEERS, MARIJN M.A.
Delivering aphasia therapy via telecommunication may provide a means to deliver intensive therapy in a cost-effective way. Teletherapy, remotely-administered (language) treatment, may support the repetitive drill practices that people with chronic aphasia need to perform when learning to compensate for their lasting language difficulties. The use of teletherapy may allow speech and language pathologists (SLPs) to focus in-person sessions more strongly on the generalisation of therapy effects to daily life. This single subject study is an investigation whether a teletherapy application called e-REST meets the criteria of accessibility, user-friendliness, as well as effectiveness. e-REST, the teletherapy version of the Dutch and adapted Reduced Syntax Therapy, teaches chronically aphasic speakers of Dutch who experience difficulties in sentence production to convey their messages in a kind of telegraphic style. The results obtained suggest that it is reasonable to conduct a larger study into the user-friendliness, accessibility, effectiveness, and cost-effectiveness of e-REST. PMID:27563388
Bastiaanse, Roelien; Bamyaci, Elif; Hsu, Chien-Ju; Lee, Jiyeon; Duman, Tuba Yarbay; Thompson, Cynthia K.
It has been shown across several languages that verb inflection is difficult for agrammatic aphasic speakers. In particular, Tense inflection is vulnerable. Several theoretical accounts for this have been posed, for example, a pure syntactic one suggesting that the Tense node is unavailable due to its position in the syntactic tree (Friedmann & Grodzinsky, 1997); one suggesting that the interpretable features of the Tense node are underspecified (Burchert, Swoboda-Moll, & De Bleser, 2005; Wenzlaff & Clahsen, 2004, 2005); and a morphosemantic one, arguing that the diacritic Tense features are affected in agrammatism (Faroqi–Shah & Dickey, 2009; Lee, Milman, & Thompson, 2008). However recent findings (Bastiaanse, 2008) and a reanalysis of some oral production studies (e.g. Lee et al., 2008; Nanousi, Masterson, Druks, & Atkinson, 2006) suggest that both Tense and Aspect are impaired and, most importantly, reference to the past is selectively impaired, both through simple verb forms (such as simple past in English) and through periphrastic verb forms (such as the present perfect, ‘has V-ed’, in English). It will be argued that reference to the past is discourse linked and reference to the present and future is not (Zagona, 2003, in press). In-line with Avrutin’s (2000) theory that suggests discourse linking is impaired in Broca’s aphasia, the PAst DIscourse LInking Hypothesis (PADILIH) has been formulated. Three predictions were tested: (1) patients with agrammatic aphasia are selectively impaired in use of grammatical morphology associated with reference to the past, whereas, inflected forms which refer to the present and future are relatively spared; (2) this impairment is language-independent; and (3) this impairment will occur in both production and comprehension. Agrammatic Chinese, English and Turkish speakers were tested with the Test for Assessing Reference of Time (TART; Bastiaanse, Jonkers, & Thompson, unpublished). Results showed that both the
Rigalleau, Francois; Baudiffier, Vanessa; Caplan, David
Three French-speaking agrammatic aphasics and three French-speaking Conduction aphasics were tested for comprehension of Active, Passive, Cleft-Subject, Cleft-Object, and Cleft-Object sentences with Stylistic Inversion using an object manipulation test. The agrammatic patients consistently reversed thematic roles in the latter sentence type, and…
Thompson, Cynthia K; Lee, Miseon
This study examined the factors that affect agrammatic sentence production by testing eight agrammatic aphasic participants' comprehension and production of active and passive sentences using two types of English psych verbs, those with an Experiencer-marked subject (Subject-Experiencer (SubExp)) and those with an Experiencer-marked object (Object-Experiencer (ObjExp)). The Argument Structure Complexity Hypothesis (ASCH, [J. Neuroling. 16 (2003) 151]) posits that the verb (and sentence) production difficulties observed in agrammatic aphasia can be attributed, at least in part, to the argument structure properties of verbs, with verbs that are marked for more complex argument structure (in terms of the number and type of arguments) presenting greater difficulty than those with less complex argument structure entries. Based on previous linguistic analyses of psych verbs, ObjExp psych verbs are more complex than SubjExp verbs. Therefore, we predicted that the former would present greater production (but not comprehension) difficulty than the latter. Results showed above chance comprehension of all sentence types, with the exception of SubjExp passive constructions, in which the subject position is occupied by a non-Experiencer argument. In active sentence production, ObjExp verbs were more impaired than SubjExp verbs. However, the opposite pattern was noted for passive sentence production. While all participants had difficulty producing passive sentences of both types, they showed better performance on ObjExp verbs, as compared to SubjExp verbs, in which the Experiencer is in the subject position. Further, agrammatic aphasic speakers showed a preference for producing actives for SubjExp verbs and passives for ObjExp verbs, indicating that the thematic role requirements of selected verbs (e.g., Experiencer, Theme) influence production patterns, as they do in normal speakers. These data, as well as the error patterns seen in our patients, support the ASCH and suggest
Agrammatism is a pattern of syntactically defective speech that is frequently observed as a prominent feature in Broca's aphasia. It may range in severity from one-word utterances, completely lacking in grammatical organization, to mildly 'telegraphic' speech. First described in the early 19th century, it was originally interpreted by Pick as being due to economy of effort in finding words. Beginning with Jakobson, in 1956, there have been a succession of efforts to give an account of it in terms of linguistic theory. While the theories are still controversial, they have led to much more detailed and systematic description of the linguistic output in agrammatic speech. Cross linguistic comparisons have revealed that the features of agrammatism are not fixed, but are conditioned by the grammatical structure of the speaker's language.
Wang, Honglei; Yoshida, Masaya; Thompson, Cynthia K.
Individuals with agrammatic aphasia exhibit restricted patterns of impairment of functional morphemes, however, syntactic characterization of the impairment is controversial. Previous studies have focused on functional morphology in clauses only. This study extends the empirical domain by testing functional morphemes in English nominal phrases in aphasia and comparing patients’ impairment to their impairment of functional morphemes in English clauses. In the linguistics literature, it is assumed that clauses and nominal phrases are structurally parallel but exhibit inflectional differences. The results of the present study indicated that aphasic speakers evinced similar impairment patterns in clauses and nominal phrases. These findings are consistent with the Distributed Morphology Hypothesis (DMH), suggesting that the source of functional morphology deficits among agrammatics relates to difficulty implementing rules that convert inflectional features into morphemes. Our findings, however, are inconsistent with the Tree Pruning Hypothesis (TPH), which suggests that patients have difficulty building complex hierarchical structures. PMID:26379370
Wang, Honglei; Yoshida, Masaya; Thompson, Cynthia K
Individuals with agrammatic aphasia exhibit restricted patterns of impairment of functional morphemes, however, syntactic characterization of the impairment is controversial. Previous studies have focused on functional morphology in clauses only. This study extends the empirical domain by testing functional morphemes in English nominal phrases in aphasia and comparing patients' impairment to their impairment of functional morphemes in English clauses. In the linguistics literature, it is assumed that clauses and nominal phrases are structurally parallel but exhibit inflectional differences. The results of the present study indicated that aphasic speakers evinced similar impairment patterns in clauses and nominal phrases. These findings are consistent with the Distributed Morphology Hypothesis (DMH), suggesting that the source of functional morphology deficits among agrammatics relates to difficulty implementing rules that convert inflectional features into morphemes. Our findings, however, are inconsistent with the Tree Pruning Hypothesis (TPH), which suggests that patients have difficulty building complex hierarchical structures.
Kim, Young-Joo; Kim, Hyanghee; Song, Hong-Ki
Examines production of predicates by Korean agrammatic aphasic patients with respect to argument structure distribution of predicates. Analyzed narrative production and picture/scene description data elicited from three Broca's aphasic patients compared with matched controls. Focused on whether subjects have the same type difficulties that Kegl's…
Faroqi-Shah, Yasmeen; Dickey, Michael Walsh
Agrammatic aphasic individuals exhibit marked production deficits for tense morphology. This paper presents three experiments examining whether a group of English-speaking agrammatic individuals (n = 10) exhibit parallel deficits in their comprehension of tense. Results from two comprehension experiments (on-line grammaticality judgment studies)…
Janet Choy, Jungwon; Thompson, Cynthia K.
Background Theories of comprehension deficits in Broca’s aphasia have largely been based on the pattern of deficit found with movement constructions. However, some studies have found comprehension deficits with binding constructions, which do not involve movement. Aims This study investigates online processing and offline comprehension of binding constructions, such as reflexive (e.g., himself) and pronoun (e.g., him) constructions in unimpaired and aphasic individuals in an attempt to evaluate theories of agrammatic comprehension. Methods & Procedures Participants were eight individuals with agrammatic Broca’s aphasia and eight age-matched unimpaired individuals. We used eyetracking to examine online processing of binding constructions while participants listened to stories. Offline comprehension was also tested. Outcomes & Results The eye movement data showed that individuals with Broca’s aphasia were able to automatically process the correct antecedent of reflexives and pronouns. In addition, their syntactic processing of binding was not delayed compared to normal controls. Nevertheless, offline comprehension of both pronouns and reflexives was significantly impaired compared to the control participants. This comprehension failure was reflected in the aphasic participants’ eye movements at sentence end, where fixations to the competitor increased. Conclusions These data suggest that comprehension difficulties with binding constructions seen in agrammatic aphasic patients are not due to a deficit in automatic syntactic processing or delayed processing. Rather, they point to a possible deficit in lexical integration. PMID:20535243
Faroqi-Shah, Yasmeen; Thompson, Cynthia K.
Across most languages, verbs produced by agrammatic aphasic individuals are frequently marked by syntactically and semantically inappropriate inflectional affixes, such as Last night, I walking home. As per language production models, verb inflection errors in English agrammatism could arise from three potential sources: encoding the verbs’ morphology based on temporal information at the conceptual level, accessing syntactic well-formedness constraints of verbal morphology, and encoding morphophonological form. We investigate these aspects of encoding verb inflections in agrammatic aphasia. Using three sentence completion experiments, it was demonstrated that production of verb inflections was impaired whenever temporal reference was involved; while morphological complexity and syntactic constraints were less likely to be the source of verb inflection errors in agrammatism. These findings are discussed in relation to current language production models. PMID:18392120
Beeke, Suzanne; Wilkinson, Ray; Maxim, Jane
Historically, agrammatism, a symptom of Broca's aphasia, has been associated with dysprosody, on account of speakers' slow, halting, and effortful speech. Almost all investigations of this phenomenon use experimental methods (reading, repetition). Thus, little is known about how prosody is used by speakers with agrammatism and understood by their…
Bastiaanse, Roelien; Rispens, Judith; Ruigendijk, Esther; Rabadaán, Oneésimo Juncos; Thompson, Cynthia K.
It has repeatedly been shown that agrammatic Broca's aphasics have serious problems with the retrieval of verbs on action naming tests (Miceli, Silveri, Villa & Caramazza, 1984; Kohn, Lorch & Pearson, 1989; Basso, Razzano, Faglioni & Zanobio, 1990; Jonkers, 1998; Kim & Thompson, 2000). Less attention has been paid to the production of verbs at the sentence level (but see Miceli, Mazzuchi, Menn & Goodglass, 1983; Thompson, Shapiro, Li & Schendel, 1995; Thompson, Lange, Schneider & Shapiro, 1997; Bastiaanse & Van Zonneveld, 1998; Bastiaanse, Rispens & Van Zonneveld, 2000; Friedmann, 2000), although it has been mentioned that in agrammatic spontaneous speech verbs are lacking (Saffran, Berndt & Schwartz, 1989; Thompson et al., 1995, but see Bastiaanse & Jonkers, 1998). In this paper, three cross-linguistic studies are discussed to show that these problems with verbs have consequences for other grammatical morphemes and structures that have been mentioned to be impaired in agrammatic speech and that these consequences are different per language, depending on linguistic characteristics. The first study focuses on finiteness and compares the production of finite verbs in matrix and embedded clauses in Dutch and English, showing that a linguistic rule in Dutch (Verb Second), which does not exist in English, can explain the different performance of Dutch and English agrammatic Broca's aphasics. The second study focuses on determiners and (finite) verbs in German and shows that poor determiner production is directly related to poor verb production. The last study demonstrates that the ability to construct negative sentences is dependent on the language specific relation between verb movement and negation: Dutch and Norwegian agrammatics perform equally well on affirmative and negative sentences, whereas English and Spanish agrammatics are more impaired on negative sentences. Overall, these studies show that the problems agrammatics encounter with verbs and their properties
Obler, L K; Harris, K; Meth, M; Centeno, J; Mathews, P
In three experiments with nondysarthric agrammatics, we explored the association between phonology and morphosyntax. (1) Contrasting phonological and nonphonological factors on inflectional-affix production of English verbs across three tasks in eight agrammatics, longer stem-syllabic length and stem-final-CC status resulted in poorer affix-production. (2) Studying verb inflections in six agrammatic Spanish-speakers, affix-length and affix-stress correlated with poorer repetition, as did low affix frequency. (3) Four English-speaking agrammatics read aloud and repeated derived words varying in syllable-length and stem-stress reassignment; both contributed independently to word-production difficulty. Phonological complexity of affixes and stems appears to reduce resources for morphological processing in nondysarthric agrammatics.
Moses, Melanie S.; Nickels, Lyndsey A.; Sheard, Christine
In this study, the recurrent perseverative errors produced by 44 speakers without impairment were examined in picture naming and reading aloud tasks under a fast response deadline. The proportion of perseverative relative to non-perseverative errors was greater in picture naming, the more error-prone task, than in reading aloud. Additionally,…
Meltzer-Asscher, Aya; Thompson, Cynthia K.
Background In contrast to nouns and verbs, the use of adjectives in agrammatic aphasia has not been systematically studied. However, because of the linguistic and psycholinguistic attributes of adjectives, some of which overlap with nouns and some with verbs, analysis of adjective production is important for testing theories of word class production deficits in agrammatism. Aims The objective of the current study was to compare adjective use in agrammatic and healthy individuals, focusing on three factors: overall adjective production rate, production of predicative and attributive adjectives, and production of adjectives with complex argument structure. Method & Procedures Narratives elicited from 14 agrammatic and 14 control participants were coded for open class grammatical category production (i.e., nouns, verbs, adjectives), with each adjective also coded for its syntactic environment (attributive/predicative) and argument structure. Outcomes & Results Overall, agrammatic speakers used adjectives in proportions similar to that of cognitively healthy speakers. However, they exhibited a greater proportion of predicative adjectives and a lesser proportion of attributive adjectives, compared to controls. Additionally, agrammatic participants produced adjectives with less complex argument structure than controls. Conclusions The overall normal-like frequency of adjectives produced by agrammatic speakers suggests that agrammatism does not involve an inherent difficulty with adjectives as a word class or with predication, or that it entails a deficit in processing low imageability words. However, agrammatic individuals’ reduced production of attributive adjectives and adjectives with complements extends previous findings of an adjunction deficit and of impairment in complex argument structure processing, respectively, to the adjectival domain. The results suggest that these deficits are not tied to a specific grammatical category. PMID:24882945
This brief note has two parts. First, it presents an analysis of the ability of English agrammatic patients to assign the thematic roles of agent, instrument, theme, and locative to noun phrases in active and passive sentences and prepositional phrases. Data regarding this ability have been presented by Schwartz, Saffran, and Marin (Brain and Language, 10, 149-262 (1980) regarding comprehension, and by Saffran, Schwartz, and Marin (Brain and Language, 10, 263-280 (1980) regarding production. These authors claim their data show that English agrammatic aphasics do not map "word order" onto thematic information. However, a very simple set of principles accounts for all their results, including results which are discrepant in their treatment, but requires that English agrammatics assign thematic roles to NPs in part by virtue of the position of an NP in a sentence or a phrase. In the second part of this note, several issues raised by this re-analysis are briefly discussed.
Caramazza, A.; Capasso, R.; Capitani, E.; Miceli, G.
We tested the core prediction of the Trace Deletion Hypothesis (TDH) of agrammatic Broca's aphasia, which contends that such patients' comprehension performance is normal for active reversible sentences but at chance level for passive reversible sentences. We analyzed the comprehension performance of 38 Italian Broca's aphasics with verified…
Goodenough, Cheryl; And Others
Studies have indicated that agrammatical aphasics tend to better realize morphemes with a high level of semantic value. A study sought to examine the effect of the variation of the information content of the article on its comprehension by the aphasic. The appropriate and the significant nature of the function words "the" and "a" were varied with…
Cho, Soojin; Thompson, Cynthia K.
Background Production of passive sentences is often impaired in agrammatic aphasia and has been attributed both to an underlying structural impairment (e.g., Schwartz, Saffran, Fink, Myers, & Martin, 1994) and to a morphological deficit (e.g., Caplan & Hanna, 1998; Faroqi-Shah & Thompson, 2003). However, the nature of the deficit in passive sentence production is not clear due to methodological issues present in previous studies. Aims This study examined active and passive sentence production in nine agrammatic aphasic speakers under conditions of structural priming using eyetracking to test whether structural impairments occur independently of morphological impairments and whether the underlying nature of error types is reflected in on-line measures, i.e., eye movements and speech onset latencies. Methods & Procedures Nine participants viewed and listened to a prime sentence in either active or passive voice, and then repeated it aloud. Next, a target picture appeared on the computer monitor and participants were instructed to describe it using the primed sentence structure. Outcomes & Results Participants made substantial errors in sentence structure, i.e., passives with role reversals (RRs) and actives-for-passives, but few errors in passive morphology. Longer gaze durations to the first-produced noun for passives with RRs as compared to correct passives were found before and during speech. For actives-for-passives, however, this pattern was found during speech, but not before speech. Conclusions The deficit in passive sentence production does not solely arise from a morphological deficit, rather it stems, at least in part, from a structural level impairment. The underlying nature of passives with RRs is qualitatively different from that of actives-for-passives, which cannot be clearly differentiated with off-line testing methodology. PMID:21188294
Failure to supply inflection is common in adult L2 learners of English and agrammatic aphasics (AAs), who are known to resort to bare verb forms. Among attempts to explain the absence of inflection are competing morphological and phonological explanations. In the L2 acquisition literature, omission of inflection is explained in terms of: mapping…
Kurowski, Kathleen M.; Blumstein, Sheila E.; Palumbo, Carole L.; Waldstein, Robin S.; Burton, Martha W.
The present study investigated the articulatory implementation deficits of Broca's and Wernicke's aphasics and their potential neuroanatomical correlates. Five Broca's aphasics, two Wernicke's aphasics, and four age-matched normal speakers produced consonant-vowel-(consonant) real word tokens consisting of [m, n] followed by [i, e, a, o, u]. Three…
Hartsuiker, R J; Kolk, H H
Recently, proposals have been made to relate processing difficulties in aphasic language performance to limitations in resources for grammatical processing (Carpenter et al., 1994; Hagiwara, 1995; Kolk, 1995; Martin & Romani, 1994). Such proposals may account for a defining characteristic of agrammatic sentence production: reduced syntactic complexity. Syntactic structures that require deep hierarchical processing or reversals of canonical word order make demands exceeding limited resources. In the present study, we investigate the possibility of counteracting hypothesized resource limitations by increasing the availability of relatively complex sentences (i.e., datives and passives). The phenomenon of "syntactic priming" has been observed in a number of studies with healthy adults (e.g., Bock, 1986). With respect to Broca's aphasia, we hypothesized that increased availability of a syntactic structure, due to syntactic priming, results in a lesser demand on (limited) resources for sentence production. We elicited speech from 12 Broca's aphasics and 12 control subjects in three different conditions: spontaneous speech, picture description without priming, and picture description with priming. In addition, we varied instructions, in order to determine the role of strategies. The main findings were that (a) Brocas show stronger syntactic priming effects than controls; (b) the effects are automatic rather than strategic; and (c) in conditions with priming, Brocas produce relatively complex sentences (e.g., passives). We discuss these results in relation to capacity theories.
Kielar, Aneta; Meltzer-Asscher, Aya; Thompson, Cynthia
Sentence comprehension requires processing of argument structure information associated with verbs, i.e. the number and type of arguments that they select. Many individuals with agrammatic aphasia show impaired production of verbs with greater argument structure density. The extent to which these participants also show argument structure deficits during comprehension, however, is unclear. Some studies find normal access to verb arguments, whereas others report impaired ability. The present study investigated verb argument structure processing in agrammatic aphasia by examining event-related potentials associated with argument structure violations in healthy young and older adults as well as aphasic individuals. A semantic violation condition was included to investigate possible differences in sensitivity to semantic and argument structure information during sentence processing. Results for the healthy control participants showed a negativity followed by a positive shift (N400-P600) in the argument structure violation condition, as found in previous ERP studies (Friederici & Frisch, 2000; Frisch, Hahne, & Friederici, 2004). In contrast, individuals with agrammatic aphasia showed a P600, but no N400, response to argument structure mismatches. Additionally, compared to the control groups, the agrammatic participants showed an attenuated, but relatively preserved, N400 response to semantic violations. These data show that agrammatic individuals do not demonstrate normal real-time sensitivity to verb argument structure requirements during sentence processing. PMID:23022079
Dickey, Michael Walsh; Thompson, Cynthia K.
Individuals with agrammatic Broca’s aphasia show deficits in comprehension of non-canonical wh-movement and NP-movement sentences. Previous work using eyetracking has found that agrammatic and unimpaired listeners show very similar patterns of automatic processing for wh-movement sentences. The current study attempts to replicate this finding for sentences with wh-movement (in object relatives in the current study) and to extend it to sentences with NP movement (passives). For wh-movement sentences, aphasic and control participants’ eye-movements differed most dramatically in late regions of the sentence and post-offset, with aphasic participants exhibiting lingering attention to a salient but grammatically impermissible competitor. The eye-movement differences between correct and incorrect trials for wh-movement sentences were similar, with incorrect trials also exhibiting competition from an impermissible interpretation late in the sentence. Furthermore, the two groups exhibited similar eye-movement patterns in response to passive NP-movement sentences, but showed little evidence of gap-filling for passives. The results suggest that aphasic and unimpaired individuals may generate similar representations during comprehension, but that aphasics are highly vulnerable to interference from alternative interpretations (Ferreira, 2003). PMID:20161014
Thompson, Cynthia K.; Choy, Jungwon Janet
This paper reports the results of three studies examining comprehension and real-time processing of pronominal (Experiment 1) and Wh-movement (Experiments 2 and 3) structures in agrammatic and unimpaired speakers using eyetracking. We asked the following questions: (a) Is off-line comprehension of these constructions impaired in agrammatic…
Thompson, Cynthia K.; Cho, Soojin; Price, Charis; Wieneke, Christina; Bonakdarpour, Borna; Rogalski, Emily; Weintraub, Sandra; Mesulam, M-Marsel
This study examined the time course of object naming in 21 individuals with primary progressive aphasia (PPA) (8 agrammatic (PPA-G); 13 logopenic (PPA-L)) and healthy age-matched speakers (n=17) using a semantic interference paradigm with related and unrelated interfering stimuli presented at stimulus onset asynchronies (SOAs) of -1000, -500, -100…
When children are in the process of learning their mother tongue, they show frequent use of nonfinite clauses, even though they produce finite clauses at the same time, thereby demonstrating the availability of the functional domain associated with finiteness. In this study the hypothesis was tested that this behavior results from an overuse of the normal elliptical repertoire that has also been observed in agrammatic aphasia. The purpose of this overuse is prevention of computational overload. In support of the hypothesis it was found that children behaved very similar to aphasics and normal adults with respect to the following parameters: (a) distribution of types of ellipsis, (b) elaboration of ellipses, (c) word order, (d) subject omission, (e) frequency of weak subject pronouns, and (f) verb type (eventivity). The results also support the Jackson/Jakobson regression hypothesis, at least at the grammatical level.
Mack, Jennifer E.; Ji, Woohyuk; Thompson, Cynthia K.
Relatively little is known about the time course of access to the lexical representations of verbs in agrammatic aphasia and its effects on the prediction and integration of the verb’s arguments. The present study used visual-world eyetracking to test whether verb meaning can be used by agrammatic aphasic individuals to predict and facilitate the integration of a subsequent noun argument. Nine adults with agrammatic aphasia and ten age-matched controls participated in the study. In Experiment 1, participants viewed arrays of four objects (e.g., jar, plate, stick, pencil) while listening to sentences containing either a restrictive verb that was semantically compatible only with the target object or an unrestrictive verb compatible with all four objects (e.g., Susan will open/break the jar). For both participant groups, the restrictive condition elicited more fixations to the target object immediately after the verb. Experiment 2 differed from Experiment 1 in that the auditory sentences presented were incomplete (e.g., Susan will open/break the…). For controls, restrictive verbs elicited more target fixations immediately after the verb; however, the effects of verb type were noted downstream from the verb for the aphasic listeners. The results suggest that individuals with agrammatic aphasia have preserved ability to use verb information to facilitate integration of overt arguments, but prediction of upcoming arguments is impaired. Impaired lexical-semantic prediction processes may be caused by damage to the left inferior frontal gyrus, which has been argued to support higher-level lexical processes. PMID:24092952
Dick, Frederic; Bates, Elizabeth; Wulfeck, Beverly; Utman, Jennifer; Dronkers, Nina; Gernsbacher, Morton Ann
Selective deficits in aphasics patients’ grammatical production and comprehension are often cited as evidence that syntactic processing is modular and localizable in discrete areas of the brain (e.g., Y. Grodzinsky, 2000). The authors review a large body of experimental evidence suggesting that morphosyntactic deficits can be observed in a number of aphasic and neurologically intact populations. They present new data showing that receptive agrammatism is found not only over a range of aphasic groups, but is also observed in neurologically intact individuals processing under stressful conditions. The authors suggest that these data are most compatible with a domain-general account of language, one that emphasizes the interaction of linguistic distributions with the properties of an associative processor working under normal or suboptimal conditions. PMID:11699116
Graham, Naida L.; Leonard, Carol; Tang-Wai, David F.; Black, Sandra; Chow, Tiffany W.; Scott, Chris J.M.; McNeely, Alicia A.; Masellis, Mario; Rochon, Elizabeth
Background/Aims Frank agrammatism, defined as the omission and/or substitution of grammatical morphemes with associated grammatical errors, is variably reported in patients with nonfluent variant primary progressive aphasia (nfPPA). This study addressed whether frank agrammatism is typical in agrammatic nfPPA patients when this feature is not required for diagnosis. Method We assessed grammatical production in 9 patients who satisfied current diagnostic criteria. Although the focus was agrammatism, motor speech skills were also evaluated to determine whether dysfluency arose primarily from apraxia of speech (AOS), instead of, or in addition to, agrammatism. Volumetric MRI analyses provided impartial imaging-supported diagnosis. Results The majority of cases exhibited neither frank agrammatism nor AOS. Conclusion There are nfPPA patients with imaging-supported diagnosis and preserved motor speech skills who do not exhibit frank agrammatism, and this may persist beyond the earliest stages of the illness. Because absence of frank agrammatism is a subsidiary diagnostic feature in the logopenic variant of PPA, this result has implications for differentiation of the nonfluent and logopenic variants, and indicates that PPA patients with nonfluent speech in the absence of frank agrammatism or AOS do not necessarily have the logopenic variant. PMID:27790240
Thompson, C K; McReynolds, L V
The effects of auditory-visual stimulation treatment derived from principles associated with a stimulation approach for aphasia treatment and direct-production treatment derived from a behavioral or learning approach were examined in 4 neurologically stable agrammatic aphasic subjects. Subjects were trained to produce selected exemplars of wh interrogative morphemes in complete sentence contexts, while the acquisition, response generalization (both within and across interrogative forms), stimulus generalization (to language samples), and maintenance effects of the two treatments were assessed. An alternating treatments design (ATD) in combination with a multiple-baseline design across behaviors and a multiple-baseline design across subjects was employed. Interrogative constructions were counterbalanced across subjects and treatments, and probes were administered daily to assess treatment effects. Results indicated that direct-production treatment was consistently more effective than auditory-visual stimulation treatment in facilitating acquisition of target responses for all subjects. Response generalization within interrogative forms paralleled acquisition regardless of treatment approach. Stimulus generalization to the elicited language-sample condition was not evident, however, trained responses were maintained subsequent to treatment. These data provided support for using direct-production treatment for interrogative intervention with agrammatic aphasic patients and indicated that training a selected number of exemplars of target interrogatives results in generalization of that question form to novel language responses. However, the lack of generalization across interrogatives indicated that wh interrogatives do not constitute a response class and, thus, pointed out a need for programming generalization to untrained members of that linguistic class and to spontaneous language.
Barrès, Victor; Lee, Jinyong
How does the language system coordinate with our visual system to yield flexible integration of linguistic, perceptual, and world-knowledge information when we communicate about the world we perceive? Schema theory is a computational framework that allows the simulation of perceptuo-motor coordination programs on the basis of known brain operating principles such as cooperative computation and distributed processing. We present first its application to a model of language production, SemRep/TCG, which combines a semantic representation of visual scenes (SemRep) with Template Construction Grammar (TCG) as a means to generate verbal descriptions of a scene from its associated SemRep graph. SemRep/TCG combines the neurocomputational framework of schema theory with the representational format of construction grammar in a model linking eye-tracking data to visual scene descriptions. We then offer a conceptual extension of TCG to include language comprehension and address data on the role of both world knowledge and grammatical semantics in the comprehension performances of agrammatic aphasic patients. This extension introduces a distinction between heavy and light semantics. The TCG model of language comprehension offers a computational framework to quantitatively analyze the distributed dynamics of language processes, focusing on the interactions between grammatical, world knowledge, and visual information. In particular, it reveals interesting implications for the understanding of the various patterns of comprehension performances of agrammatic aphasics measured using sentence-picture matching tasks. This new step in the life cycle of the model serves as a basis for exploring the specific challenges that neurolinguistic computational modeling poses to the neuroinformatics community.
Thompson, Cynthia K.; Ouden, Dirk-Bart den; Bonakdarpour, Borna; Garibaldi, Kyla; Parrish, Todd B.
This study examined patterns of neural activation associated with treatment-induced improvement of complex sentence production (and comprehension) in six individuals with stroke-induced agrammatic aphasia, taking into account possible alterations in blood flow often associated with stroke, including delayed time-to-peak of the hemodynamic response function (HRF) and hypoperfused tissue. Aphasic participants performed an auditory verification fMRI task, processing object cleft, subject cleft, and simple active sentences, prior to and following a course of Treatment of Underlying Forms (TUF; Thompson et al., 2003), a linguistically based approach for treating aphasic sentence deficits, which targeted object relative clause constructions. The patients also were scanned in a long-trials task to examine HRFs, to account for any local deviations resulting from stroke, and perfusion images were obtained to evaluate regions of hypoperfused tissue. Region-of-interest (ROI) analyses were conducted (bilaterally), modeling participant-specific local HRFs in left hemisphere areas activated by 12 healthy age-matched volunteers performing the same task, including the middle and inferior frontal gyri, precentral gyrus, middle and superior temporal gyri, and insula, and additional regions associated with complex syntactic processing, including the posterior perisylvian and superior parietal cortices. Results showed that, despite individual variation in activation differences from pre- to post-treatment scans in the aphasic participants, main-effects analyses revealed a general shift from left superior temporal activation to more posterior temporoparietal areas, bilaterally. Time-to-peak of these responses correlated negatively with blood flow, as measured with perfusion imaging. PMID:20603138
Weidner, W E; Jinks, A F
Research has demonstrated that the presentation of auditory and visual cues is an effective clinical procedure for improving picture naming of nonfluent aphasic speakers. The effect of combined cue presentation, however, has not been clearly demonstrated. The present study investigated the effect of single and multiple cueing techniques used with nonfluent (Broca's) aphasic patients. The subjects were divided into a minimum or maximum error group based on their performance on a picture-naming task. Printed words (in either cursive or manuscript style), initial syllables, and sentence completion cues were presented independently and in combination. Discussion is directed toward the potential clinical application of multiple cueing techniques.
Papagno, Costanza; Tabossi, Patrizia; Colombo, Maria Rosa; Zampetti, Patrizia
Idiom comprehension was assessed in 10 aphasic patients with semantic deficits by means of a string-to-picture matching task. Patients were also submitted to an oral explanation of the same idioms, and to a word comprehension task. The stimuli of this last task were the words following the verb in the idioms. Idiom comprehension was severely…
Vasanta, D.; Suvarna, A.; Sireesha, J.
The focus of this paper is application of the concept of "sonority" to the study of aphasic speech. An assessment tool that is capable of examining sonority effects was developed and administered to a patient diagnosed to have progressive non-fluent aphasia. This tool successfully distinguished the performance of the patient from that of two…
Thompson, Cynthia K.; Bonakdarpour, Borna; Fix, Stephen F.
Processing of lexical verbs involves automatic access to argument structure entries entailed within the verb's representation. Recent neuroimaging studies with young normal listeners suggest that this involves bilateral posterior peri-sylvian tissue, with graded activation in these regions on the basis of argument structure complexity. The aim of…
Kurowski, Kathleen M.; Blumstein, Sheila E.; Palumbo, Carole L.; Waldstein, Robin; Burton, Martha W.
The present study investigated the articulatory implementation deficits of Broca’s and Wernicke’s aphasics and their potential neuroanatomical correlates. Five Broca’s aphasics, two Wernicke’s aphasics, and four age-matched normal speakers produced consonant-vowel-(consonant) real word tokens consisting of [m, n] followed by [i, e, a, o, u]. Three acoustic measures were analyzed corresponding to different properties of articulatory implementation: murmur duration (a measure of timing), amplitude of the first harmonic at consonantal release (a measure of articulatory coordination), and murmur amplitude over time (a measure of laryngeal control). Results showed that Broca’s aphasics displayed impairments in all of these parameters, whereas Wernicke’s aphasics only exhibited greater variability in the production of two of the parameters. The lesion extent data showed that damage in either Broca’s area or the insula cortex was not predictive of the severity of the speech output impairment. Instead, lesions in the upper and lower motor face areas and the supplementary motor area resulted in the most severe implementation impairments. For the Wernicke’s aphasics, the posterior areas (superior marginal gyrus, parietal, and sensory) appear to be involved in the retrieval and encoding of lexical forms for speech production, resulting in increased variability in speech production. PMID:17145076
Petocz, A; Oliphant, G
It has been proposed that a principal cause of the agrammatism of some Broca's aphasics is that such patients, unlike normal subjects, are unable to make use of a special retrieval mechanism for closed-class ("function") words (D. C. Bradley, 1978, Computational distinctions of vocabulary type, Unpublished Ph.D. thesis; D. C. Bradley, M. F. Garrett, & E. B. Zurif, 1980. In D. Caplan (Ed.), Biological studies of mental processes). The main evidence for the existence of such a mechanism consisted of two observations: (1) the recognition of open-class words was observed to be frequency-sensitive, but that of closed-class words was not; and (2) lexical decisions for nonwords which began with open-class words were delayed, whereas there was no such interference for nonwords which began with closed-class words. However, the first of these observations has proved nonreplicable (e.g., B. Gordon & A. Caramazza, 1982, Brain and Language, 15, 143-160, 1983, Brain and Language, 19, 335-345; J. Segui, J. Mehler, W. Frauenfelder, & J. Morton, 1982, Neuropsychologia, 20, 615-627), and in the present paper, three lexical decision experiments are reported in which it is found that, when certain confounding variables are controlled, nonwords which begin with closed-class words are subject to interference. Moreover, contrary to a suggestion of Kolk and Blomert (1985, Brain and Language, 26, 94-105) the interference is independent of the presence of closed-class items in the lexical decision word list. It seems, then, that closed-class words are not qualitatively different from open-class words with respect either to frequency sensitivity or to nonword interference, and in consequence, the above proposed explanation of agrammatism is left without major empirical support.
Schuchard, Julia; Thompson, Cynthia K
Implicit learning is a process of acquiring knowledge that occurs without conscious awareness of learning, whereas explicit learning involves the use of overt strategies. To date, research related to implicit learning following stroke has been largely restricted to the motor domain and has rarely addressed implications for language. The present study investigated implicit and explicit learning of an auditory word sequence in 10 individuals with stroke-induced agrammatic aphasia and 18 healthy age-matched participants using an adaptation of the Serial Reaction Time task. Individuals with aphasia showed significant learning under implicit, but not explicit, conditions, whereas age-matched participants learned under both conditions. These results suggest significant implicit learning ability in agrammatic aphasia. Furthermore, results of an auditory sentence span task indicated working memory deficits in individuals with agrammatic aphasia, which are discussed in relation to explicit and implicit learning processes.
Lang, James M.
While a good class with a guest speaker requires plenty of advance preparation, the real clincher is for the teacher to create a tight fit between the course objectives and the speaker's purpose in being there. The speaker has to play an essential role in fulfilling the learning objectives of the course; if that doesn't happen, the students will…
Bastiaanse, Roelien; Bouma, Gosse; Post, Wendy
There is a long standing debate between aphasiologists on the essential factor that constitutes the behavioral patterns of loss and preservation in agrammatic Broca's aphasia. It has been suggested that linguistic complexity plays a crucial role: linguistically complex structures are more difficult to produce than linguistically simple ones.…
Ihori, Nami; Kashiwagi, Asako; Kashiwagi, Toshihiro
To investigate spatial responses by aphasic patients during language tasks, 63 aphasics (21 severe, 21 moderate, and 21 mild) were administered two kinds of auditory pointing tasks-word tasks and sentence tasks-in which the spatial conditions of the stimuli were controlled. There were significantly fewer correct responses on the right side of a space than on the left side in both the word and sentence tasks, but the left deviation of correct responses was more prominent in the sentence task than in the word task. Additionally, the severe aphasics exhibited a prominent leftward deviation that may have been the result of deficits in rightward attention controlled by the left hemisphere. This phenomenon also seems to reflect the directional attention that is subserved by the right hemisphere, which attends to the left side of a space and, less predominantly, the right side of a space.
Buckingham, Hugh W., Jr.; And Others
The linguistic structure of specific introductory type clauses, which appear at a relatively high frequency in the utterances of a severely brain damaged fluent aphasic with neologistic jargon speech, is examined. The analysis is restricted to one fifty-six-year-old male patient who suffered massive subdural hematoma. (SCC)
Li, Edith Chin; Canter, Gerald J.
The study investigated A. R. Luria's hypothesis that aphasic subgroups (Broca's, conduction, Wernicke's, and anomic aphasics) would respond differentially to phonemic prompts. Results, with the exception of the anomic aphasic group, supported Luria's predictions. (Author/DB)
Milman, Lisa H.; Dickey, Michael Walsh; Thompson, Cynthia K.
Hierarchical models of agrammatism propose that sentence production deficits can be accounted for in terms of clausal syntactic structure [Friedmann, N., & Grodzinsky, Y. (1997). "Tense and agreement in agrammatic production: Pruning the syntactic tree." "Brain and Language, 56", 397-425; Hagiwara, H. (1995). "The breakdown of functional…
Weinrich, M; Boser, K I; McCall, D; Bishop, V
We trained two subjects with chronic agrammatic aphasia on production of passive sentences using a computerized, iconic-based communication system. After training, one of the subjects demonstrated significant improvements in his abilities to comprehend and verbally produce English passive voiced sentences, including sentences with conjoined subjects and objects. These results suggest that agrammatism does not represent a fixed syntactic deficit.
Correia, L; Brookshire, R H; Nicholas, L E
Twelve aphasic and 12 non-brain-damaged adult males described the speech elicitation pictures from the Boston Diagnostic Aphasia Examination (BDAE), the Minnesota Test for Differential Diagnosis of Aphasia (MTDDA), the Western Aphasia Battery (WAB), and six pictures representing male-biased or female-biased daily-life situations. For each speech sample we calculated number of words, words per minute, number of correct information units, percentage of words that were correct information units, and percentage of correct information units that were nouns or adjectives (amount of enumeration or naming). The WAB picture elicited more enumeration than the BDAE or MTDDA pictures, and information was produced at a slower rate in response to the WAB picture than the other two pictures. These differences were statistically significant and appear to be clinically important. Gender bias had statistically significant effects on two measures. Male-biased pictures elicited significantly more words and significantly more correct information units than female-biased pictures. However, these differences were small and do not appear to be clinically important. Two of the five measures (words per minute and percentage of words that were correct information units) differentiated non-brain-damaged speakers from aphasic speakers. The magnitude of these differences suggests that these measures provide clinically important information about the problems aphasic adults may have when they produce narrative discourse.
Thompson, Cynthia K.; Cho, Soojin; Hsu, Chien-Ju; Wieneke, Christina; Rademaker, Alfred; Weitner, Bing Bing; Mesulam, M-Marsel; Weintraub, Sandra
Background Classical aphasiology, based on the study of stroke sequelae, fuses speech fluency and grammatical ability. Nonfluent (Broca's) aphasia often is accompanied by agrammatism; whereas in the fluent aphasias grammatical deficits are not typical. The assumption that a similar relationship exists in primary progressive aphasia (PPA) has led to the dichotomization of this syndrome into fluent and nonfluent subtypes. Aims This study compared elements of fluency and grammatical production in the narrative speech of individuals with PPA to determine if they can be dissociated from one another. Method Speech samples from 37 individuals with PPA, clinically assigned to agrammatic (N=11), logopenic (N=20) and semantic (N=6) subtypes, and 13 cognitively healthy control participants telling the “Cinderella Story” were analyzed for fluency (i.e., words per minute (WPM) and mean length of utterance in words (MLU-W)) and grammaticality (i.e., the proportion of grammatically correct sentences, open-to-closed-class word ratio, noun-to-verb ratio, and correct production of verb inflection, noun morphology, and verb argument structure.) Between group differences were analyzed for each variable. Correlational analyses examined the relation between WPM and each grammatical variable, and an off-line measure of sentence production. Outcomes And Results Agrammatic and logopenic groups both had lower scores on the fluency measures and produced significantly fewer grammatical sentences than did semantic and control groups. However, only the agrammatic group evinced significantly impaired production of verb inflection and verb argument structure. In addition, some semantic participants showed abnormal open-to-closed and noun-to-verb ratios in narrative speech. When the sample was divided on the basis of fluency, all the agrammatic participants fell in the nonfluent category. The logopenic participants varied in fluency but those with low fluency showed variable performance on
This article gives a brief introduction to the content of aphasic discourse analysis, the theoretical frameworks applied, and critical findings . It also points out the problem that faces the study, the variety of study methods that arises, and the future trend. The structuralists tend to focus on the micro aspects of the discourse while the functionalists on its general structure and the meaning. The study in the future shall address the connection of these two levels.
Onoue, Solange Satie; Ortiz, Karin Zazo; Minett, Thaís Soares Cianciarullo; Borges, Alda Christina Lopes de Carvalho
Objective To outline the audiological findings of aphasic patients after cerebrovascular accidents. Methods This is a cross-sectional study performed between March 2011 and August 2012 in the Speech, Language, and Hearing Pathology Department of the Universidade Federal de São Paulo. A total of 43 aphasic subjects (27 men) were referred for audiological evaluation after stroke, with mean age of 54.48 years. Basic audiological evaluation tests were performed, including pure tone audiometry, speech audiometry (speech recognition threshold and word recognition score), immittance measures (tympanometry and contralateral acoustic reflex), and transient otoacoustic emissions. Results Sensorineural hearing loss was prevalent (78.6%). Speech recognition threshold and word recognition score were not obtained in some patients because they were unable to perform the task. Hearing loss was a common finding in this population. Conclusion Comprehension and/or oral emission disruptions in aphasic patients after stroke compromised conventional speech audiometry, resulting in the need for changes in the evaluation procedures for these patients. PMID:25628193
Bhat, Sapna; Chengappa, Shyamala
Patterns of code switching were studies from two aphasic and two neurologically normal Kannada-English bilinguals. Conversational analysis of the samples based on the Matrix Language Frame (MLF) model (Myers-Scotton, 1993) revealed consistent code switching between two languages by all the subjects. The aphasic subjects demonstrated a greater…
Examines the art of professional verse speaking and suggests the creation of standards for the training of specialized speakers. Available from: Speech and Drama, Anthony Jackman, Editor, 205 Ashby Road, Loughborough, Leics LE11 3AD. Subscription Rates: non-members (USA) $6.00 p.a.; singles $2.50 surface post free. (MH)
Kim, Mikyong; Thompson, Cynthia K.
This study examined the nature of verb deficits in 14 individuals with probable Alzheimer’s Disease (PrAD) and nine with agrammatic aphasia. Production was tested, controlling both semantic and syntactic features of verbs, using noun and verb naming, sentence completion, and narrative tasks. Noun and verb comprehension and a grammaticality judgment task also were administered. Results showed that while both PrAD and agrammatic subjects showed impaired verb naming, the syntactic features of verbs (i.e., argument structure) influenced agrammatic, but not Alzheimer’s disease patients’ verb production ability. That is, agrammatic patients showed progressively greater difficulty with verbs associated with more arguments, as has been shown in previous studies (e.g., Kim & Thompson, 2000; Thompson, 2003; Thompson, Lange, Schneider, & Shapiro, 1997), and suggest a syntactic basis for verb production deficits in agrammatism. Conversely, the semantic complexity of verbs affected PrAD, but not agrammatic, patients’ performance, suggesting “bottom-up” breakdown in their verb lexicon, paralleling that of nouns, resulting from the degradation or loss of semantic features of verbs. PMID:14698726
van Dongen, H R; Visch-Brink, E G
In the spontaneous speech of aphasic children paraphasias have been described. This analysis of naming errors during recovery showed that neologisms, literal and verbal paraphasias occurred. The etiology affected the recovery course of neologisms, but not other errors.
Toledo, Manuel; Munuera, Josep; Sueiras, Maria; Rovira, Rosa; Alvarez-Sabín, José; Rovira, Alex
Ictal-MRI studies including diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI), perfusion-weighted imaging (PWI), and MR-angiography (MRA) in patients with aphasic status epilepticus (ASE) are lacking. In this report, we aim to describe the consequences of the ASE on DWIs and its impact on cerebral circulation. We retrospectively studied eight patients with ASE confirmed by ictal-EEG, who underwent ictal-MRI shortly after well-documented onset (mean time delay 3 h). ASE consisted in fluctuating aphasia, mostly associated with other subtle contralateral neurological signs such as hemiparesia, hemianopia, or slight clonic jerks. In MRI, six patients showed cortical temporoparietal hyperintensity in DWI and four of them had also ipsilateral pulvinar lesions. Five patients showed close spatial hyperperfusion areas matching the DWI lesions and an enhanced blow flow in the middle cerebral artery. Parenchymal lesions and hemodynamic abnormalities were not associated with seizure duration or severity in any case. The resolution of DWI lesions at follow-up MRI depended on the length of the MRIs interval. In patients with ASE, lesions on DWI in the temporo-parietal cortex and pulvinar nucleus combined with local hyperperfusion can be observed, even when they appear distant from the epileptic focus or the language areas.
The non-fluent/agrammatic variant of primary progressive aphasia (naPPA) is a young-onset neurodegenerative disorder characterised by poor grammatical comprehension and expression and a disorder of speech sound production. In an era of disease-modifying treatments, the identification of naPPA might be an important step in establishing a specific cause of neurodegenerative disease. However, difficulties in defining the characteristic language deficits and heterogeneity in the anatomical distribution of disease in naPPA have led to controversy. Findings from imaging studies have linked an impairment of this uniquely human language capacity with disruption of large-scale neural networks centred in left inferior frontal and anterior superior temporal regions. Accordingly, the pathological burden of disease in naPPA is anatomically focused in these regions. Most cases of naPPA are associated with the spectrum of pathological changes found in frontotemporal lobar degeneration involving the microtubule-associated protein tau. Knowledge of these unique clinical-pathological associations should advance care for patients with this important class of neurodegenerative diseases while supplementing our knowledge of human cognitive neuroscience.
Stenneken, Prisca; Bastiaanse, Roelien; Huber, Walter; Jacobs, Arthur M
Phonological theories have raised the notion of a universally preferred syllable type which is defined in terms of its sonority structure (e.g., ). Empirical evidence for this notion has been provided by distributional analyses of natural languages and of language acquisition data, and by aphasic speech error analyses. The present study investigates frequency distributions of syllable types in German, which allows for a rather complex syllable structure, and in neologistic utterances of a German speaking jargon aphasic. The findings suggest that the sonority structure of the patient's neologisms is generally in accordance with the notion of theoretically preferred syllables. Moreover, comparative analyses suggest that the predominance of the preferred syllable type is especially pronounced in the aphasic data. On the basis of these findings, the influence of sonority in impaired phonological lexical processing is discussed.
author eliminated the inter-speaker variability of the source by using an electro- larynx . There were 10 male speakers and 10 female speakers. The...speakers were instructed how to produce non-phonated speech using an electro- larynx . For both male and female speakers, the fundamental frequency of...the electro- larynx was 85 Hz with a jitter of ±3Hz. The experimental task was to listen to two voices and decide if the voices were the same or
Weinrich, M; Steele, R D; Carlson, G S; Kleczewska, M; Wertz, R T; Baker, E
A globally aphasic patient was trained on a computerized visual communication system. His ability to comprehend reversible locative prepositional phrases after training was studied and compared with the performance of Broca's aphasics on a similar task. This patient's ability to generalize symbols for actions was also investigated. The results demonstrate our patient's capacity to master a formal visual syntax in the absence of natural language and illustrate how this capacity may be used successfully in a visual communication system. A problem in generalizing symbols for actions is demonstrated, suggesting that certain heuristic and cueing capabilities in the approach may be helpful.
to other methods that use a pooled reference model , this technique normalizes the training speech from multiple reference speakers to a single com...training the reference hidden Markov model (HMM). Our usual prohabilistic spectrum transformation can be applied to the reference HMM to model a new...trained phonetic hidden Markov models of a single reference speaker so that they were appropriate for a new (target) speaker. This method reduced the
Duman, Tuba Yarbay; Aygen, Gulsat; Bastiaanse, Roelien
This study presents results from a sentence completion test that examines the production of finite main clauses and non-finite relative clauses in Turkish agrammatic speech. In main clauses, the verb is finite and all its constituents are in their base positions. In relative clauses, the verb is a participle and the NP undergoes overt movement to…
Thompson, Cynthia K.; And Others
Production of complex sentences was studied in two men with agrammatic aphasia. The influence of training question production (wh)-movement structures on untrained wh-movement structures and on noun phrases (NP)-movement structures was investigated. Results indicate that movement to an argument position, as in NP-movement, is distinct from a…
Kim, Mikyong; Thompson, Cynthia K.
This study examined the nature of verb deficits in 14 individuals with probable Alzheimer's Disease (PrAD) and nine with agrammatic aphasia. Production was tested, controlling both semantic and syntactic features of verbs, using noun and verb naming, sentence completion, and narrative tasks. Noun and verb comprehension and a grammaticality…
MCGINNIS, MILDRED A.
THIS BOOK IS DESIGNED TO DEFINE APHASIA AND ITS CHARACTERISTICS, TO PRESENT A PROCEDURE FOR TEACHING LANGUAGE TO APHASIC CHILDREN, AND TO APPLY THIS PROCEDURE TO ELEMENTARY SCHOOL SUBJECTS. OTHER HANDICAPPING CONDITIONS WHICH COMPLICATE THE DIAGNOSIS OF APHASIA ARE PRESENTED BY MEANS OF CASE STUDIES. CHARACTERISTICS OF TWO TYPES OF…
Levin, H S; Grossman, R G; Kelly, P J
Quantitative assessment of 50 patients with closed head injury disclosed that anomic errors and word finding difficulty were prominent sequelae as nearly half of the series had defective scores on tests of naming and/or word association. Aphasic disturbance was associated with severity of brain injury as reflected by prolonged coma and injury of the brain stem. PMID:1011017
Barr, D F; Mullin, T A; Herbert, P S
We investigated whether six aphasics and six normal subjects could binaurally fuse two slightly differing frequencies of constant amplitude. The aphasics were subdivided into two groups: (1) two men who had had mild cerebrovascular accidents (CVAs) during the past 15 months; (2) four men who had had severe CVAs during the last 15 months. Two tones of different frequency levels but equal in intensity were presented dichotically to the subjects at 40 dB sensation level. All subjects had normal hearing at 500 Hz (0 to 25 dB). All six normal subjects and the two aphasics who had had mild CVAs could hear the binaural beats. The four aphasics who had had severe CVAs could not hear them. A 2 X 2 design resulting from this study was compared using chi2 test with Yates correction and was found to be significantly different (P less than .05). Two theories are presented to explain these findings: the "depression theory" and the "temporal time-sequencing theory." Therapeutic implications are also discussed relative to cerebral and/or brain stem involvement in the fusion of binaural stimuli.
Whitaker, Harry A.
This paper uses a discussion of experiments with aphasics' use of verbally derived nouns to illustrate how one linguistic model may be superior to another in accounting for the facts of verbal behavior. The models involved are the transformational, which relates derived nominals to their source verb and lists only the verb in the lexicon, and the…
Stenneken, Prisca; Bastiaanse, Roelien; Huber, Walter; Jacobs, Arthur M.
Phonological theories have raised the notion of a universally preferred syllable type which is defined in terms of its sonority structure (e.g., Clements, 1990). Empirical evidence for this notion has been provided by distributional analyses of natural languages and of language acquisition data, and by aphasic speech error analyses. The present…
Wilshire, Carolyn E.; Saffran, Eleanor M.
Two fluent aphasics, IG and GL, performed a phonological priming task in which they repeated an auditory prime then named a target picture. The two patients both had selective deficits in word production: they were at or near ceiling on lexical comprehension tasks, but were significantly impaired in picture naming. IG's naming errors included both…
Racette, Amelie; Bard, Celine; Peretz, Isabelle
A classic observation in neurology is that aphasics can sing words they cannot pronounce otherwise. To further assess this claim, we investigated the production of sung and spoken utterances in eight brain-damaged patients suffering from a variety of speech disorders as a consequence of a left-hemisphere lesion. In Experiment 1, the patients were…
The Research Triangle Park Speakers Bureau page is a free resource that schools, universities, and community groups in the Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill, N.C. area can use to request speakers and find educational resources.
Tang, Hao; Chu, Stephen Mingyu; Hasegawa-Johnson, Mark; Huang, Thomas S
Content-based multimedia indexing, retrieval, and processing as well as multimedia databases demand the structuring of the media content (image, audio, video, text, etc.), one significant goal being to associate the identity of the content to the individual segments of the signals. In this paper, we specifically address the problem of speaker clustering, the task of assigning every speech utterance in an audio stream to its speaker. We offer a complete treatment to the idea of partially supervised speaker clustering, which refers to the use of our prior knowledge of speakers in general to assist the unsupervised speaker clustering process. By means of an independent training data set, we encode the prior knowledge at the various stages of the speaker clustering pipeline via 1) learning a speaker-discriminative acoustic feature transformation, 2) learning a universal speaker prior model, and 3) learning a discriminative speaker subspace, or equivalently, a speaker-discriminative distance metric. We study the directional scattering property of the Gaussian mixture model (GMM) mean supervector representation of utterances in the high-dimensional space, and advocate exploiting this property by using the cosine distance metric instead of the euclidean distance metric for speaker clustering in the GMM mean supervector space. We propose to perform discriminant analysis based on the cosine distance metric, which leads to a novel distance metric learning algorithm—linear spherical discriminant analysis (LSDA). We show that the proposed LSDA formulation can be systematically solved within the elegant graph embedding general dimensionality reduction framework. Our speaker clustering experiments on the GALE database clearly indicate that 1) our speaker clustering methods based on the GMM mean supervector representation and vector-based distance metrics outperform traditional speaker clustering methods based on the “bag of acoustic features” representation and statistical
Romani, C; Calabrese, A
The Sonority Dispersion Principle (Clements, 1990) states that the sharper the rise in sonority between the beginning of the syllable and the nucleus, the better the syllable. So far evidence in favour of this principle has been derived mainly from the distributional properties of syllable types and, to a lesser extent, from language acquisition. The case of DB, presented in this study, provides strong evidence that the Sonority Dispersion Principle also applies to an explanation of aphasic errors and revives Jakobson's idea that the same principles of complexity can explain the distribution of syllables, language acquisition, and language loss (Jakobson, 1941, 1968). Although some evidence that sonority constraints aphasic errors has been presented before, this is the first study reporting systematic effects of sonority-based complexity in aphasia.
Meltzer, Jed A.; Wagage, Suraji; Ryder, Jennifer; Solomon, Beth; Braun, Allen R.
Aphasic patients often exhibit increased right hemisphere activity during language tasks. This may represent takeover of function by regions homologous to the left-hemisphere language networks, maladaptive interference, or adaptation of alternate compensatory strategies. To distinguish between these accounts, we tested language comprehension in 25 aphasic patients using an online sentence-picture matching paradigm while measuring brain activation with MEG. Linguistic conditions included semantically irreversible (“The boy is eating the apple”) and reversible (“The boy is pushing the girl”) sentences at three levels of syntactic complexity. As expected, patients performed well above chance on irreversible sentences, and at chance on reversible sentences of high complexity. Comprehension of reversible non-complex sentences ranged from nearly perfect to chance, and was highly correlated with offline measures of language comprehension. Lesion analysis revealed that comprehension deficits for reversible sentences were predicted by damage to the left temporal lobe. Although aphasic patients activated homologous areas in the right temporal lobe, such activation was not correlated with comprehension performance. Rather, patients with better comprehension exhibited increased activity in dorsal fronto-parietal regions. Correlations between performance and dorsal network activity occurred bilaterally during perception of sentences, and in the right hemisphere during a post-sentence memory delay. These results suggest that effortful reprocessing of perceived sentences in short-term memory can support improved comprehension in aphasia, and that strategic recruitment of alternative networks, rather than homologous takeover, may account for some findings of right hemisphere language activation in aphasia. PMID:23566891
Meltzer, Jed A; Wagage, Suraji; Ryder, Jennifer; Solomon, Beth; Braun, Allen R
Aphasic patients often exhibit increased right hemisphere activity during language tasks. This may represent takeover of function by regions homologous to the left-hemisphere language networks, maladaptive interference, or adaptation of alternate compensatory strategies. To distinguish between these accounts, we tested language comprehension in 25 aphasic patients using an online sentence-picture matching paradigm while measuring brain activation with MEG. Linguistic conditions included semantically irreversible ("The boy is eating the apple") and reversible ("The boy is pushing the girl") sentences at three levels of syntactic complexity. As expected, patients performed well above chance on irreversible sentences, and at chance on reversible sentences of high complexity. Comprehension of reversible non-complex sentences ranged from nearly perfect to chance, and was highly correlated with offline measures of language comprehension. Lesion analysis revealed that comprehension deficits for reversible sentences were predicted by damage to the left temporal lobe. Although aphasic patients activated homologous areas in the right temporal lobe, such activation was not correlated with comprehension performance. Rather, patients with better comprehension exhibited increased activity in dorsal fronto-parietal regions. Correlations between performance and dorsal network activity occurred bilaterally during perception of sentences, and in the right hemisphere during a post-sentence memory delay. These results suggest that effortful reprocessing of perceived sentences in short-term memory can support improved comprehension in aphasia, and that strategic recruitment of alternative networks, rather than homologous takeover, may account for some findings of right hemisphere language activation in aphasia.
Fink, Ruth B; Bartlett, Megan R; Lowery, Jennifer S; Linebarger, Marcia C; Schwartz, Myrna F
BACKGROUND: SentenceShaper((R)) (SSR) is a computer program that is for speech what a word-processing program is for written text; it allows the user to record words and phrases, play them back, and manipulate them on-screen to build sentences and narratives. A recent study demonstrated that when listeners rated the informativeness of functional narratives produced by chronic aphasic speakers with and without the program they gave higher informativeness ratings to the language produced with the aid of the program (Bartlett, Fink, Schwartz, & Linebarger, 2007). Bartlett et al. (2007) also compared unaided (spontaneous) narratives produced before and after the aided version of the narrative was obtained. In a subset of comparisons, the sample created after was judged to be more informative; they called this "topic-specific carryover". AIMS: (1) To determine whether differences in informativeness that Bartlett et al.'s listeners perceived are also revealed by Correct Information Unit (CIU) analysis (Nicholas & Brookshire, 1993)-a well studied, objective method for measuring informativeness-and (2) to demonstrate the usefulness of CIU analysis for samples of this type. METHODS #ENTITYSTARTX00026; PROCEDURES: A modified version of the CIU analysis was applied to the speech samples obtained by Bartlett et al. (2007). They had asked five individuals with chronic aphasia to create functional narratives on two topics, under three conditions: Unaided ("U"), Aided ("SSR"), & Post-SSR Unaided ("Post-U"). Here, these samples were analysed for differences in % CIUs across conditions. Linear associations between listener judgements and CIU measures were evaluated with bivariate correlations and multiple regression analysis. OUTCOMES #ENTITYSTARTX00026; RESULTS: (1) The aided effect was confirmed: samples produced with SentenceShaper had higher % CIUs, in most cases exceeding 90%. (2) There was little CONCLUSIONS: That the percentage of CIUs was higher in SSR-aided samples than in
This study investigates neighbourhood density effects on lexical decision performance (both accuracy and response times) of aphasic patients. Given earlier results on lexical activation and deactivation in Broca's and Wernicke's aphasia, the prediction was that smaller neighbourhood density effects would be found for Broca's aphasic patients,…
Papagno, C.; Caporali, A.
Idiom comprehension in 15 aphasic patients was assessed with three tasks: a sentence-to-picture matching task, a sentence-to-word matching task and an oral definition task. The results of all three tasks showed that the idiom comprehension in aphasic patients was impaired compared to that of the control group, and was significantly affected by the…
Salisbury, Laura; Code, Chris
This article explores the relationship between automatic and involuntary language in the work of Samuel Beckett and late nineteenth-century neurological conceptions of language that emerged from aphasiology. Using the work of John Hughlings Jackson alongside contemporary neuroscientific research, we explore the significance of the lexical and affective symmetries between Beckett's compulsive and profoundly embodied language and aphasic speech automatisms. The interdisciplinary work in this article explores the paradox of how and why Beckett was able to search out a longed-for language of feeling that might disarticulate the classical bond between the language, intention, rationality and the human, in forms of expression that seem automatic and "readymade".
Gilbert, Thomas; Bokhour, Barbara G.
Background. Stroke survivors with aphasia experience difficulty associated with their communication disorder. While much has been written about aphasia's impacts on partners/family, we lack data regarding the psychosocial adjustment of aphasic stroke survivors, with a paucity of data from the patients themselves. Methods. Qualitative study of lived experiences of individuals with poststroke aphasia. Each of the stroke survivors with aphasia completed 3-4 semistructured interviews. In most cases, patients' partners jointly participated in interviews, which were transcribed and analyzed using techniques derived from grounded theory. Results. 12 patients were interviewed, with the total of 45 interviews over 18 months. Themes included poststroke changes in patients' relationships and identities, which were altered across several domains including occupational identity, relationship and family roles, and social identity. While all these domains were impacted by aphasia, the impact varied over time. Conclusion. Despite the challenges of interviewing individuals with aphasia, we explored aphasia's impacts on how individuals experience their identity and develop new identities months and years after stroke. This data has important implications for primary care of patients with aphasia, including the importance of the long-term primary care relationship in supporting psychosocial adjustment to life after aphasic stroke. PMID:25685553
The issues surrounding native speakers (NSs) and nonnative speakers (NNSs) as teachers (NESTs and NNESTs, respectively) in the field of teaching English to speakers of other languages (TESOL) are a current topic of interest. In many contexts, the native speaker of English is viewed as the model teacher, thus putting the NEST into a position of…
Mendez, M O; Alba, A; Chouvarda, I; Milioli, G; Grassi, A; Terzano, M G; Parrino, L
A statistical analysis of the separability of EEG A-phases, with respect to basal activity, is presented in this study. A-phases are short central events that build up the Cyclic Alternating Pattern (CAP) during sleep. The CAP is a brain phenomenon which is thought to be related to the construction, destruction and instability of sleep stages dynamics. From the EEG signals, segments obtained around the onset and offset of the A-phases were used to evaluate the separability between A-phases and basal sleep stage oscillations. In addition, a classifier was trained to separate the different A-phase types (A1, A2 and A3). Temporal, energy and complexity measures were used as descriptors for the classifier. The results show a percentage of separation between onset and preceding basal oscillations higher than 85 % for all A-phases types. For Offset separation from following baseline, the accuracy is higher than 80 % but specificity is around 75%. Concerning to A-phase type separation, A1-phase and A3-phase are well separated with accuracy higher than 80, while A1 and A2-phases show a separation lower than 50%. These results encourage the design of automatic classifiers for Onset detection and for separating among A-phases type A1 and A3. On the other hand, the A-phase Offsets present a smooth transition towards the basal sleep stage oscillations, and A2-phases are very similar to A1-phases, suggesting that a high uncertainty may exist during CAP annotation.
Schnitzer, M L
A test of sentence comprehension administered in four input-output modality combinations to a group of aphasic bilinguals and monolingual hispanophones provides evidence that aphasics tend to use pragmatic-mode (in the sense of Givón, 1979, On understanding-grammar, New York, Academic Press) strategies in approaching this task. When five factors were identified and dichotomized with respect to the pragmatic-mode-syntactic-mode dimension, the patients performed significantly better on items classified as pragmatic than on those classified as syntactic, in both languages. The results support a vertical/hierarchical view of aphasic language dissolution.
Croot, Karen; Ballard, Kirrie; Leyton, Cristian E.; Hodges, John R.
Purpose: The International Consensus Criteria for the diagnosis of primary progressive aphasia (PPA; Gorno-Tempini et al., 2011) propose apraxia of speech (AOS) as 1 of 2 core features of nonfluent/agrammatic PPA and propose phonological errors or absence of motor speech disorder as features of logopenic PPA. We investigated the sensitivity and…
Stadie, Nicole; Schröder, Astrid; Postler, Jenny; Lorenz, Antje; Swoboda-Moll, Maria; Burchert, Frank; De Bleser, Ria
Agrammatism is-among others, characterized by a deficit in producing grammatical structures. Of specific difficulty is the utilization of complex, non-canonical sentence structures (e.g. object-questions, passives, object-clefts). Several studies have documented positive effects when applying a specific treatment protocol in terms of increasingly correct production of target complex sentence structures with some variance in generalization patterns noted across individuals. The objective of this intervention study was to evaluate an intervention program focussing on the production of non-canonical sentences. Hypotheses about the occurrence of treatment effects were formulated on the basis of syntactic complexity, referring to the amount of syntactic phrase structures necessary to generate specific German sentence structures. A multiple single case study with seven agrammatic participants was applied, each participant receiving training in the production of object-relative-clauses and who-questions. The investigation was designed to unambiguously evaluate for each individual, structure specific and generalized learning effects with respect to the production of object-relative-clauses, who-questions and passive sentences. Results showed significant improvements for all sentences types. This outcome is considered within methodological issues of treatment studies. Theoretical and clinical implications are discussed.
Venus, Carol A.; Canter, Gerald J.
Aphasic adults (N=16) with severe auditory comprehension impairment were evaluated for comprehension of redundant and nonredundant spoken and/or gestured messages. Results indicated redundancy was not reliably superior to spoken messages alone. (Author/DB)
Mendez, Martin Oswaldo; Chouvarda, Ioanna; Alba, Alfonso; Bianchi, Anna Maria; Grassi, Andrea; Arce-Santana, Edgar; Milioli, Guilia; Terzano, Mario Giovanni; Parrino, Liborio
An analysis of the EEG signal during the B-phase and A-phases transitions of the cyclic alternating pattern (CAP) during sleep is presented. CAP is a sleep phenomenon composed by consecutive sequences of A-phases (each A-phase could belong to a possible group A1, A2 or A3) observed during the non-REM sleep. Each A-phase is separated by a B-phase which has the basal frequency of the EEG during a specific sleep stage. The patterns formed by these sequences reflect the sleep instability and consequently help to understand the sleep process. Ten recordings from healthy good sleepers were included in this study. The current study investigates complexity, statistical and frequency signal properties of electroencephalography (EEG) recordings at the transitions: B-phase--A-phase. In addition, classification between the onset-offset of the A-phases and B-phase was carried out with a kNN classifier. The results showed that EEG signal presents significant differences (p < 0.05) between A-phases and B-phase for the standard deviation, energy, sample entropy, Tsallis entropy and frequency band indices. The A-phase onset showed values of energy three times higher than B-phase at all the sleep stages. The statistical analysis of variance shows that more than 80% of the A-phase onset and offset is significantly different from the B-phase. The classification performance between onset or offset of A-phases and background showed classification values over 80% for specificity and accuracy and 70% for sensitivity. Only during the A3-phase, the classification was lower. The results suggest that neural assembles that generate the basal EEG oscillations during sleep present an over-imposed coordination for a few seconds due to the A-phases. The main characteristics for automatic separation between the onset-offset A-phase and the B-phase are the energy at the different frequency bands.
Cacciari, Cristina; Reati, Fabiola; Colombo, Maria Rosa; Padovani, Roberto; Rizzo, Silvia; Papagno, Costanza
The ability to understand ambiguous idioms was assessed in 15 aphasic patients with preserved comprehension at a single word level. A string-to-word matching task was used. Patients were requested to choose one among four alternatives: a word associated with the figurative meaning of the idiom string; a word semantically associate with the last constituent of the idiom string; and two unrelated words. The results showed that patients' performance was impaired with respect to a group of matched controls, with patients showing a frontal and/or temporal lesion being the most impaired. A significant number of semantically associate errors were produced, suggesting an impairment of inhibition mechanisms and/or of recognition/activation of the idiomatic meaning.
Erway, Ella Anderson
Scholars agree that listening is an active rather than a passive process. The listening which makes people achieve higher scores on current listening tests is "second speaker" listening or active participation in the encoding of the message. Most of the instructional suggestions in listening curriculum guides are based on this concept. In terms of…
Chambers, M. M.
This paper reviews some of the speaker ban cases that were tested in U.S. district courts. The cases discussed are: (1) the attempt by University of North Carolina administrators to ban Herbert Aptheker (an avowed Communist) from speaking on campus; (2) the class action of the Chicago Circle campus of the University of Illinois brought before a…
application the required resources are provided by the phone itself. Speaker recognition can be used in many areas, like: • homeland security: airport ... security , strengthening the national borders, in travel documents, visas; • enterprise-wide network security infrastructures; • secure electronic
The faulty use of compound nouns by aphasics is of practical and theoretical significance. Defects in the finding and using of compound nouns were investigated with respect to the following parameters: the importance of the frequency with which compounds and compound parts are used in normal speech, the influence of grammatical and psycholinguistic peculiarities on aphasic dysfunction, and the handling of compounds in individual aphasic syndromes. The distinctly poorer recall of compound nouns compared with simple nouns was found to be due mainly to their less frequent use in normal speech. In word-finding the grammatical unit of the compound noun was not very stable patholinguistically. If one part of the compound noun was commoner and more usual in normal speech than the other it was usually better recalled. However, some remarkable deviations from this were due to semantic functional value, vividness, morphologic peculiarities, and linguistic form. The wider meaning-range of the second part of the compound noun had no positive mnemonic effect, despite the propensity of the aphasic for the general. In naming tests the first part of the compound noun was preferred on average. Certain differences in the defective use of compound nouns were observed between the individual aphasic syndromes.
Eggenberger, Noëmi; Preisig, Basil C.; Schumacher, Rahel; Hopfner, Simone; Vanbellingen, Tim; Nyffeler, Thomas; Gutbrod, Klemens; Annoni, Jean-Marie; Bohlhalter, Stephan; Cazzoli, Dario; Müri, René M.
Background Co-speech gestures are omnipresent and a crucial element of human interaction by facilitating language comprehension. However, it is unclear whether gestures also support language comprehension in aphasic patients. Using visual exploration behavior analysis, the present study aimed to investigate the influence of congruence between speech and co-speech gestures on comprehension in terms of accuracy in a decision task. Method Twenty aphasic patients and 30 healthy controls watched videos in which speech was either combined with meaningless (baseline condition), congruent, or incongruent gestures. Comprehension was assessed with a decision task, while remote eye-tracking allowed analysis of visual exploration. Results In aphasic patients, the incongruent condition resulted in a significant decrease of accuracy, while the congruent condition led to a significant increase in accuracy compared to baseline accuracy. In the control group, the incongruent condition resulted in a decrease in accuracy, while the congruent condition did not significantly increase the accuracy. Visual exploration analysis showed that patients fixated significantly less on the face and tended to fixate more on the gesturing hands compared to controls. Conclusion Co-speech gestures play an important role for aphasic patients as they modulate comprehension. Incongruent gestures evoke significant interference and deteriorate patients’ comprehension. In contrast, congruent gestures enhance comprehension in aphasic patients, which might be valuable for clinical and therapeutic purposes. PMID:26735917
Mandelli, Maria Luisa; Vitali, Paolo; Santos, Miguel; Henry, Maya; Gola, Kelly; Rosenberg, Lynne; Dronkers, Nina; Miller, Bruce; Seeley, William W; Gorno-Tempini, Maria Luisa
The non-fluent/agrammatic variant of primary progressive aphasia (nfvPPA) and the behavioral variant frontotemporal dementia (bvFTD) are focal neurodegenerative disorders belonging to the FTD-spectrum clinical syndromes. NfvPPA is characterized by effortful speech and/or agrammatism and left frontal atrophy, while bvFTD is characterized by social-emotional dysfunction often accompanied by right-lateralized frontal damage. Despite their contrasting clinical presentations, both disorders show prominent left anterior insula atrophy. We investigated differential patterns of insular sub-region atrophy in nfvPPA and bvFTD. Based on knowledge of insular connectivity and physiology, we hypothesized that the left superior precentral region of the dorsal anterior insula (SPGI) would be more atrophic in nvfPPA due to its critical role in motor speech, whereas the ventral anterior region would be more atrophied in bvFTD reflecting its known role in social-emotional-autonomic functions. Early stage nfvPPA and bvFTD patients matched for disease severity, age, gender and education and healthy controls participated in the study. Detailed clinical history, neurological examination, neuropsychological screening evaluation, and high-resolution T1-weighted brain magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) were collected. Voxel-based morphometry (VBM) was applied to perform group comparisons across the whole brain and in bilateral insula region of interest (ROI). Correlation analyses between insular sub-region atrophy and relevant clinical features were performed. Whole brain group comparisons between nfvPPA and bvFTD showed the expected predominantly left or right anterior insular atrophy pattern. ROI analysis of bilateral insula showed that the left SPGI was significantly more atrophied in nfvPPA compared to bvFTD, while the bilateral ventral anterior and right dorsal anterior insula sub-regions were more atrophied in bvFTD than nfvPPA. Only left SPGI volume correlated with speech production
Mandelli, Maria Luisa; Vitali, Paolo; Santos, Miguel; Henry, Maya; Gola, Kelly; Rosenberg, Lynne; Dronkers, Nina; Miller, Bruce; Seeley, William W.; Gorno-Tempini, Maria Luisa
The non-fluent/agrammatic variant of primary progressive aphasia (nfvPPA) and the behavioral variant frontotemporal dementia (bvFTD) are focal neurodegenerative disorders belonging to the FTD-spectrum clinical syndromes. NfvPPA is characterized by effortful speech and/or agrammatism and left frontal atrophy, while bvFTD is characterized by social-emotional dysfunction often accompanied by right-lateralized frontal damage. Despite their contrasting clinical presentations, both disorders show prominent left anterior insula atrophy. We investigated differential patterns of insular subregion atrophy in nfvPPA and bvFTD. Based on knowledge of insular connectivity and physiology, we hypothesized that the left superior precentral region of the dorsal anterior insula (SPGI) would be more atrophic in nvfPPA due to its critical role in motor speech, whereas the ventral anterior region would be more atrophied in bvFTD reflecting its known role in social-emotional-autonomic functions. Early stage nfvPPA and bvFTD patients matched for disease severity, age, gender and education and healthy controls participated in the study. Detailed clinical history, neurological examination, neuropsychological screening evaluation, and high-resolution T1-weighted brain magnetic resonance images (MRI) were collected. Voxel-based morphometry (VBM) was applied to perform group comparisons across the whole brain and in bilateral insula region of interest (ROI). Correlation analyses between insular subregion atrophy and relevant clinical features were performed. Whole brain group comparisons between nfvPPA and bvFTD showed the expected predominantly left or right anterior insular atrophy pattern. ROI analysis of bilateral insula showed that the left SPGI was significantly more atrophied in nfvPPA compared to bvFTD, while the bilateral ventral anterior and right dorsal anterior insula subregions were more atrophied in bvFTD than nfvPPA. Only left SPGI volume correlated with speech production
Recent research provides evidence that individuals shift in their perception of variants depending on social characteristics attributed to the speaker. This paper reports on a speech perception experiment designed to test the degree to which the age attributed to a speaker influences the perception of vowels undergoing a chain shift. As a result…
Kong, Anthony Pak-Hin; Yeh, Chun-Chih
Background: Various quantitative systems have been proposed to examine aphasic oral narratives in English. A clinical tool for assessing discourse produced by Cantonese-speaking persons with aphasia (PWA), namely Main Concept Analysis (MCA), was developed recently for quantifying the presence, accuracy and completeness of a narrative. Similar…
Bormann, Tobias; Kulke, Florian; Wallesch, Claus-W.; Blanken, Gerhard
Within a discrete two-stage model of lexicalization, semantic errors and errors of omission are assumed to be independent events. In contrast, cascading and interactive models allow for an influence of word form on lexical selection and thus for an inherent relationship in accounting for both error types. A group of 17 aphasic patients was…
Wingfield, Arthur; Brownell, Hiram; Hoyte, Ken J.
Although deficits in confrontation naming are a common consequence of damage to the language areas of the left cerebral hemisphere, some patients with aphasia show relatively good naming ability. We measured effects of repeated practice on naming latencies for a set of pictured objects by three aphasic patients with near-normal naming ability and…
Szelag, Elzbieta; Lewandowska, Monika; Wolak, Tomasz; Seniow, Joanna; Poniatowska, Renata; Pöppel, Ernst; Szymaszek, Aneta
Experimental studies have often reported close associations between rapid auditory processing and language competency. The present study was aimed at improving auditory comprehension in aphasic patients following specific training in the perception of temporal order (TO) of events. We tested 18 aphasic patients showing both comprehension and TO perception deficits. Auditory comprehension was assessed by the Token Test, phonemic awareness and Voice-Onset-Time Test. The TO perception was assessed using auditory Temporal-Order-Threshold, defined as the shortest interval between two consecutive stimuli, necessary to report correctly their before-after relation. Aphasic patients participated in eight 45-minute sessions of either specific temporal training (TT, n=11) aimed to improve sequencing abilities, or control non-temporal training (NT, n=7) focussed on volume discrimination. The TT yielded improved TO perception; moreover, a transfer of improvement was observed from the time domain to the language domain, which was untrained during the training. The NT did not improve either the TO perception or comprehension in any language test. These results are in agreement with previous literature studies which proved ameliorated language competency following the TT in language-learning-impaired or dyslexic children. Our results indicated for the first time such benefits also in aphasic patients.
Phillips, Phyllis P.; Halpin, Gerald
Because it generally took over an hour to administer the Porch Index of Communicative Ability (PICA), a shorter but comparable version of the test was developed. The original test was designed to quantify aphasic patients' ability level on common communicative tasks and consisted of 18 ten-item subtests. Each item resulted in a proficiency rating,…
Williams, Sarah E.; Wright, Judith M.
The effect of semantic grouping on confrontation-naming performances of 16 fluent and 10 nonfluent aphasic adults was examined. Performances were not uniformly facilitated in one naming condition over the other. Some patients, however, did appear to display performance discrepancies between the two conditions. (Author/CL)
Spironelli, Chiara; Angrilli, Alessandro
In this study spectral delta percentage was used to assess both brain dysfunction/inhibition and functional linguistic impairment during different phases of word processing. To this aim, EEG delta amplitude was measured in 17 chronic non-fluent aphasic patients while engaged in three linguistic tasks: Orthographic, Phonological and Semantic.…
In a multilingual country such as India, the probability that clinicians may not have command over different languages used by aphasic patients is very high. Since formal tests in different languages are limited, assessment of people from diverse linguistic backgrounds presents speech- language pathologists with many challenges. With a view to…
Berndt, Rita Sloan; Haendiges, Anne N.; Mitchum, Charlotte C.
Aphasic patients with reading impairments frequently substitute incorrect real words for target words when reading aloud. Many of these word substitutions have substantial orthographic overlap with their targets and are classified as ''visual errors'' (i.e., sharing 50% of targets' letters in the same relative position). Fifteen chronic aphasic…
Different models of spoken word production make different predictions regarding the extent of effects of certain word properties on the output of that model. This article examines these predictions with regard to the effect of these variables on the production of semantic and phonological errors by aphasic subjects. (60 references) (Author/CK)
Kittredge, Audrey; Davis, Lissa; Blumstein, Sheila E.
In a series of experiments, the effect of white noise distortion and talker variation on lexical access in normal and Broca's aphasic participants was examined using an auditory lexical decision paradigm. Masking the prime stimulus in white noise resulted in reduced semantic priming for both groups, indicating that lexical access is degraded by…
Hodgson, Catherine; Lambon Ralph, Matthew A.
Semantic errors are commonly found in semantic dementia (SD) and some forms of stroke aphasia and provide insights into semantic processing and speech production. Low error rates are found in standard picture naming tasks in normal controls. In order to increase error rates and thus provide an experimental model of aphasic performance, this study…
Caso, Francesca; Gesierich, Benno; Henry, Maya; Sidhu, Manu; LaMarre, Amanda; Babiak, Miranda; Miller, Bruce L; Rabinovici, Gil D; Huang, Eric J; Magnani, Giuseppe; Filippi, Massimo; Comi, Giancarlo; Seeley, William W; Gorno-Tempini, Maria Luisa
The role of biomarkers in predicting pathological findings in the frontotemporal dementia (FTD) clinical spectrum disorders is still being explored. We present comprehensive, prospective longitudinal data for a 66 year old, right-handed female who met current criteria for the nonfluent/agrammatic variant of primary progressive aphasia (nfvPPA). She first presented with a 3-year history of progressive speech and language impairment mainly characterized by severe apraxia of speech. Neuropsychological and general motor functions remained relatively spared throughout the clinical course. Voxel-based morphometry (VBM) showed selective cortical atrophy of the left posterior inferior frontal gyrus (IFG) and underlying insula that worsened over time, extending along the left premotor strip. Five years after her first evaluation, she developed mild memory impairment and underwent PET-FDG and PiB scans that showed left frontal hypometabolism and cortical amyloidosis. Three years later (11 years from first symptom), post-mortem histopathological evaluation revealed Pick's disease, with severe degeneration of left IFG, mid-insula, and precentral gyrus. Alzheimer's disease (AD) (CERAD frequent/Braak Stage V) was also detected. This patient demonstrates that biomarkers indicating brain amyloidosis should not be considered conclusive evidence that AD pathology accounts for a typical FTD clinical/anatomical syndrome.
Mack, Jennifer E.; Cho-Reyes, Soojin; Kloet, James D.; Weintraub, Sandra; Mesulam, M-Marsel; Thompson, Cynthia K.
Phonological processing deficits are characteristic of both the agrammatic and logopenic subtypes of primary progressive aphasia (PPA-G and PPA-L). However, it is an open question which substages of phonological processing (i.e., phonological word form retrieval, phonological encoding) are impaired in these subtypes of PPA, as well as how phonological processing deficits contribute to anomia. In the present study, participants with PPA-G (n=7), PPA-L (n=7), and unimpaired controls (n=17) named objects as interfering written words (phonologically related/unrelated) were presented at different stimulus onset asynchronies (SOAs) of 0, +100, +300, and +500 ms. Phonological facilitation (PF) effects (faster naming times with phonologically related interfering words) were found for the controls and PPA-L group only at SOA=0 and +100 ms. However, the PPA-G group exhibited protracted PF effects (PF at SOA=0, +100, and +300 ms). These results may reflect deficits in phonological encoding in PPA-G, but not in PPA-L, supporting the neuropsychological reality of this substage of phonological processing and the distinction between these two PPA subtypes. PMID:24070176
From the first research on aphasia, it has been shown that, in addition to verbal communication disorders, aphasic patients often have difficulty on non-verbal cognitive tasks, which can actually be solved without the use of language. In this survey, I will discuss in a historical perspective the different interpretations provided by classical and contemporary authors to explain this puzzling observation. First, I will take into account the different positions of classical authorities on this topic, starting from the first debates (mainly based on anatomo-clinical observations) on the organisation of language in the brain. Then, I will attempt to summarize the work of authors who have tackled this complex issue more recently, in systematic investigations using methods drawn from experimental psychology, to clarify the meaning of non-verbal cognitive disorders in aphasia. Finally, in the last part of the survey, I will discuss the interpretation of proponents of the 'semantic hub' hypothesis who have tried to analyse and explain the differences between the non-verbal semantic defects of patients with semantic dementia and aphasic stroke patients. The hypothesis which assumes that most non-verbal cognitive disorders observed in aphasic patients are due to a preverbal conceptual disorder, which cannot be attributed to a loss of semantic representations but rather to a defect in their controlled retrieval, seems substantially confirmed. Nevertheless, two main issues must still be clarified. The first is that some of the non-verbal cognitive defects of aphasic patients seem due to the negative influence of language disturbances on abstract non-verbal cognitive activities, rather than to a preverbal conceptual disorder. The second issue concerns the exact nature and the neuroanatomical correlates of the defective controlled retrieval of unimpaired conceptual representations, which should subsume most of the non-verbal cognitive disorders of aphasic patients.
Recent research provides evidence that individuals shift in their perception of variants depending on social characteristics attributed to the speaker.This paper reports on a speech perception experiment designed to test the degree to which the age attributed to a speaker influences the perception of vowels undergoing a chain shift. As a result of the shift, speakers from different generations produce different variants from one another. Results from the experiment indicate that a speaker's perceived age can influence vowel categorization in the expected direction. However, only older participants are influenced by perceived speaker age.This suggests that social characteristics attributed to a speaker affect speech perception differently depending on the salience of the relationship between the variant and the characteristic.The results also provide evidence of an unexpected interaction between the sex of the participant and the sex of the stimulus.The interaction is interpreted as an effect of the participants' previous exposure with male and female speakers.The results are analyzed under an exemplar model of speech production and perception where social information is indexed to acoustic information and the weight of the connection varies depending on the perceived salience of sociophonetic trends.
Fox, S. E.; Griswold, J.
The Arctic Visiting Speakers (AVS) Series funds researchers and other arctic experts to travel and share their knowledge in communities where they might not otherwise connect. Speakers cover a wide range of arctic research topics and can address a variety of audiences including K-12 students, graduate and undergraduate students, and the general public. Host applications are accepted on an on-going basis, depending on funding availability. Applications need to be submitted at least 1 month prior to the expected tour dates. Interested hosts can choose speakers from an online Speakers Bureau or invite a speaker of their choice. Preference is given to individuals and organizations to host speakers that reach a broad audience and the general public. AVS tours are encouraged to span several days, allowing ample time for interactions with faculty, students, local media, and community members. Applications for both domestic and international visits will be considered. Applications for international visits should involve participation of more than one host organization and must include either a US-based speaker or a US-based organization. This is a small but important program that educates the public about Arctic issues. There have been 27 tours since 2007 that have impacted communities across the globe including: Gatineau, Quebec Canada; St. Petersburg, Russia; Piscataway, New Jersey; Cordova, Alaska; Nuuk, Greenland; Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania; Oslo, Norway; Inari, Finland; Borgarnes, Iceland; San Francisco, California and Wolcott, Vermont to name a few. Tours have included lectures to K-12 schools, college and university students, tribal organizations, Boy Scout troops, science center and museum patrons, and the general public. There are approximately 300 attendees enjoying each AVS tour, roughly 4100 people have been reached since 2007. The expectations for each tour are extremely manageable. Hosts must submit a schedule of events and a tour summary to be posted online
Birchmeier-Nussbaumer, A K
The methods of the Italian physician Maria Montessori influenced the development of modern learning practices. There is general agreement that the Montessori phenomenon is personality forming. Aspects of this method, which are relevant for the rehabilitation of the brain-damaged and, in particular, the aphasics are presented. Possible shifts of emphasis within the relationship therapist - method - patient are analysed. Examples are used to outline in how far an increasingly patient-oriented therapy can influence the development of the aphasic patient.
Mehri, Azar; Jalaie, Shohreh
Background: The grammar assessment in aphasia has been done by few standard tests, but today these tests cannot precise evaluate the sentence production in agrammatic patients. In this study, we review structures and contents of tests or tasks designed to find more frequent methods for sentence production ability in aphasia patients. Materials and Methods: We searched the Cochrane library, Medline by PubMed, Science Direct, Scopus, and Google Scholar from 1980 to October 1, 2013 and evaluated all of exist tests or tasks included in the articles and systematic reviews. The sentence production has been studied in three methods. It contains the use of sentence production in spontaneous speech, tasks designed and both methods. The quality of studies was assessed using Critical Appraisal Skills Program. Results: The 160 articles were reviewed and 38 articles were studied according to inclusion and exclusion criteria. They were classified into three categories based on assessment methods of sentence production. In 39.5% studies, researchers have used tasks designed, 7.9% articles have applied spontaneous speech and 52.6% articles have used both methods for evaluation production. Inter-rater reliability was between 90% and 100% and intra-rater reliability was between 96% and 98% in studied. Conclusion: Agrammatic aphasia has syntax disorders, especially in sentence production. Most researchers and clinicians used both methods for evaluation production. PMID:25535505
Ou-Yang, T Y; Shu, G J; Lin, J-Y; Hu, C D; Chou, F C
Mn vacancy defect and grain size are shown to modify the magnetic phase diagram of MnSi significantly, especially near the critical regime of A-phase (skyrmion lattice) formation and the helimagnetic phase transition. Crystals grown using controlled nonstoichiometric initial precursors creates both grain boundaries and intrinsic Mn vacancy defect of various levels in MnSi. The results of combined transport, specific heat, and AC spin susceptibility measurements are compared for MnSi single crystal samples of various manganese deficiency levels and grain sizes. The finite-size effect and Mn vacancy level dependent helical phase transition temperature T(c) have been identified and verified. The stability of A-phase in H-T phase space has been examined through AC spin susceptibility data analysis.
Smits, Marion; Visch-Brink, Evy G; van de Sandt-Koenderman, Mieke E; van der Lugt, Aad
Two advanced magnetic resonance neuroimaging techniques, functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and diffusion tensor imaging (DTI), have recently made their way into clinically oriented research and hold great promise to study the brain's adaptive changes of function and structure after aphasic stroke, respectively. Such functional and structural neuroplasticity is thought to underlie the recovery of language function, occurring spontaneously and/or in the context of therapeutic intervention. With fMRI, brain activity can be visualized. Spontaneous brain activity, present in multiple brain networks, is measured with resting-state fMRI and language-related brain activity by having the subject perform a language task during scanning (task-based fMRI). With DTI the major white matter tracts, such as the dorsal and ventral language pathways and the commissural fibers, can be visualized and quantified. Both techniques are entirely noninvasive and thus offer the unique opportunity to perform multiple assessments within the same subject. To gain more insight in functional and structural neuroplasticity after aphasic stroke, advanced magnetic resonance neuroimaging studies in specific patient populations, at several stages after stroke and in the course of language recovery, are needed. Such studies will help to clarify the influence of the many factors that play a role in the recovery of language function and are thus vital to further the development of aphasia therapy. Application of these techniques in aphasic stroke patients, however, is not without challenge. The purpose of this article is to discuss the methodologic challenges of fMRI and DTI in the assessment of language recovery after aphasic stroke.
Calis, Funda Atamaz; On, Arzu Yagiz; Durmaz, Berrin
Due to the fact that the phonetic, morphological and syntactic structures of the Turkish language differ significantly from other European languages, the translated forms of the currently available aphasia assessment batteries are not adequate for Turkish-speaking aphasic patients. The aim of this study was to assess the validity and reliability of the Ege Aphasia Test that we have developed. The test, which includes the 8 subtests of praxia, spontaneous language, auditory and verbal comprehension, repetition, naming, reading, writing and calculating, was applied into 100 aphasic patients, 40 dysarthric patients and 40 healthy subjects. All test-retest intra-class correlation coefficients were found to be excellent (ICC = 0.99). The Cronbach's coefficients ranged from 0.71 to 0.91. All the subtests showed significantly greater scores in aphasic patients (p < 0.05). Significant correlations were found between the subtests and corrected total score (p < 0.05). Finally, the Ege Aphasia Test has an acceptable validity and reliability. It seems to be a promising battery for evaluation of aphasia in the Turkish language, which is spoken mainly in Turkey and in the surrounding regions. We believe that this study will pioneer the development of aphasia rehabilitation in these countries and contribute to future studies.
Wiggins, H. V.; Fahnestock, J.
The Arctic Visiting Speakers Program (AVS) is a program of the Arctic Research Consortium of the U.S. (ARCUS) and funded by the National Science Foundation. AVS provides small grants to researchers and other Arctic experts to travel and share their knowledge in communities where they might not otherwise connect. The program aims to: initiate and encourage arctic science education in communities with little exposure to arctic research; increase collaboration among the arctic research community; nurture communication between arctic researchers and community residents; and foster arctic science education at the local level. Individuals, community organizations, and academic organizations can apply to host a speaker. Speakers cover a wide range of arctic topics and can address a variety of audiences including K-12 students, graduate and undergraduate students, and the general public. Preference is given to tours that reach broad and varied audiences, especially those targeted to underserved populations. Between October 2000 and July 2013, AVS supported 114 tours spanning 9 different countries, including tours in 23 U.S. states. Tours over the past three and a half years have connected Arctic experts with over 6,600 audience members. Post-tour evaluations show that AVS consistently rates high for broadening interest and understanding of arctic issues. AVS provides a case study for how face-to-face interactions between arctic scientists and general audiences can produce high-impact results. Further information can be found at: http://www.arcus.org/arctic-visiting-speakers.
This article identifies some discursive processes by which White, middle-class, native-English-speaking, U.S.-born college students draw on a monolingualist ideology and position themselves and others within a language-race-nationality matrix. These processes construct the speakers' Whiteness and nativeness in English as unmarked and normal; mark…
Cook, Susan Wagner; Tanenhaus, Michael K.
We explored how speakers and listeners use hand gestures as a source of perceptual-motor information during naturalistic communication. After solving the Tower of Hanoi task either with real objects or on a computer, speakers explained the task to listeners. Speakers' hand gestures, but not their speech, reflected properties of the particular…
Ferreira, V.S.; Slevc, L.R.; Rogers, E.S.
Three experiments assessed how speakers avoid linguistically and nonlinguistically ambiguous expressions. Speakers described target objects (a flying mammal, bat) in contexts including foil objects that caused linguistic (a baseball bat) and nonlinguistic (a larger flying mammal) ambiguity. Speakers sometimes avoided linguistic-ambiguity, and they…
Mani, Nivedita; Schneider, Signe
Visual cues from the speaker's face, such as the discriminable mouth movements used to produce speech sounds, improve discrimination of these sounds by adults. The speaker's face, however, provides more information than just the mouth movements used to produce speech--it also provides a visual indexical cue of the identity of the speaker. The…
Alladi, Suvarna; Bak, Thomas H; Shailaja, Mekala; Gollahalli, Divyaraj; Rajan, Amulya; Surampudi, Bapiraju; Hornberger, Michael; Duggirala, Vasanta; Chaudhuri, Jaydip Ray; Kaul, Subhash
Bilingualism has been found to delay onset of dementia and this has been attributed to an advantage in executive control in bilinguals. However, the relationship between bilingualism and cognition is complex, with costs as well as benefits to language functions. To further explore the cognitive consequences of bilingualism, the study used Frontotemporal dementia (FTD) syndromes, to examine whether bilingualism modifies the age at onset of behavioral and language variants of Frontotemporal dementia (FTD) differently. Case records of 193 patients presenting with FTD (121 of them bilingual) were examined and the age at onset of the first symptoms were compared between monolinguals and bilinguals. A significant effect of bilingualism delaying the age at onset of dementia was found in behavioral variant FTD (5.7 years) but not in progressive nonfluent aphasia (0.7 years), semantic dementia (0.5 years), corticobasal syndrome (0.4 years), progressive supranuclear palsy (4.3 years) and FTD-motor neuron disease (3 years). On dividing all patients predominantly behavioral and predominantly aphasic groups, age at onset in the bilingual behavioral group (62.6) was over 6 years higher than in the monolingual patients (56.5, p=0.006), while there was no difference in the aphasic FTD group (60.9 vs. 60.6 years, p=0.851). The bilingual effect on age of bvFTD onset was shown independently of other potential confounding factors such as education, gender, occupation, and urban vs rural dwelling of subjects. To conclude, bilingualism delays the age at onset in the behavioral but not in the aphasic variants of FTD. The results are in line with similar findings based on research in stroke and with the current views of the interaction between bilingualism and cognition, pointing to advantages in executive functions and disadvantages in lexical tasks.
Segment Classification .................... 2-8 2.3.3 Comb Filtering. . I. 2-0 2.4 Co-Channel Speaker Separation Algorithms ........... 2-9 i11 Page...4-7 4.4 Test Results ........ ......................... 4-8 4.4.1 Pitch Deviation Method of Assigning Separated Segments ...developed that if given that a segment of co-channel speech is separated into a "stronger" and "weaker" segment , the corrxt assignment of these separated
Jain, N S; Layton, B S; Murray, P K
Because the Galveston Orientation and Amnesia Test (GOAT) requires oral or written response, it risks misclassifying as amnestic aphasic patients who are not, in fact, amnestic. To correct for possible classification errors due to anomia, a modified multiple-choice format of the GOAT (AGOAT) was developed. The average GOAT score of 10 control nonaphasic head-injured patients suggested that an AGOAT score of 90 corresponds to the standard GOAT cutoff of 75 for resolution of posttraumatic amnesia (PTA). Using this criterion, 8 of 15 aphasic head-injured patients who technically were classified as amnestic on the GOAT were classified as nonamnestic on the AGOAT.
Ferreres, A R; Miravalles, G
A case of a Spanish-speaking aphasic patient who produced a great number of semantic paralexias in reading aloud and who showed other symptoms consistent with the diagnosis of deep dyslexia is presented. In this study, (a) the production of semantic paralexias and the features of the deep dyslexia syndrome which have only recently begun to be studied in Spanish-speaking patients, are analyzed; and (b) the "obligatory character of phonological mediation in the reading of Spanish proposed by some authors is discussed.
Acoustic-to-articulatory inversion, the determination of articulatory parameters from acoustic signals, is a difficult but important problem for many speech processing applications, such as automatic speech recognition (ASR) and computer aided pronunciation training (CAPT). In recent years, several approaches have been successfully implemented for speaker dependent models with parallel acoustic and kinematic training data. However, in many practical applications inversion is needed for new speakers for whom no articulatory data is available. In order to address this problem, this dissertation introduces a novel speaker adaptation approach called Parallel Reference Speaker Weighting (PRSW), based on parallel acoustic and articulatory Hidden Markov Models (HMM). This approach uses a robust normalized articulatory space and palate referenced articulatory features combined with speaker-weighted adaptation to form an inversion mapping for new speakers that can accurately estimate articulatory trajectories. The proposed PRSW method is evaluated on the newly collected Marquette electromagnetic articulography -- Mandarin Accented English (EMA-MAE) corpus using 20 native English speakers. Cross-speaker inversion results show that given a good selection of reference speakers with consistent acoustic and articulatory patterns, the PRSW approach gives good speaker independent inversion performance even without kinematic training data.
Kittredge, Audrey K.; Dell, Gary S.; Verkuilen, Jay; Schwartz, Myrna F.
Some theories of lexical access in production locate the effect of lexical frequency at the retrieval of a word’s phonological characteristics, as opposed to the prior retrieval of a holistic representation of the word from its meaning. Yet there is evidence from both normal and aphasic individuals that frequency may influence both of these retrieval processes. This inconsistency is especially relevant in light of recent attempts to determine the representation of another lexical property, age of acquisition or AoA, whose effect is similar to that of frequency. To further explore the representations of these lexical variables in the word retrieval system, we performed hierarchical, multinomial logistic regression analyses of 50 aphasic patients’ picture-naming responses. While both log frequency and AoA had a significant influence on patient accuracy and led to fewer phonologically related errors and omissions, only log frequency had an effect on semantically related errors. These results provide evidence for a lexical access process sensitive to frequency at all stages, but with AoA having a more limited effect. PMID:18704797
Kolk, H H; Friederici, A D
15 Broca's aphasics and 14 Wernicke's aphasics, both German and Dutch speaking patients, were presented with a sentence-picture matching task. Both syntactic and semantic distractor pictures were used. Sentences were either reversible or non-reversible, had a topicalized or a non-topicalized word order and contained either of three types of prepositions that were labelled 'syntactic' (case-marking), 'obligatory' (subcategorized) and 'lexical' (locative). Results indicated (a) a significant difference between reversible and non reversible sentences for both Broca's and Wernicke's; (b) no significant differences between these two groups in the differences scores reversible minus non-reversible; (c) an above-chance performance on reversible sentences for both groups. To explain the pattern of differences between the various types of sentences, two schemes of interpretation are presented. The first scheme assumes that both Broca's and Wernicke's have lost basic (but different) syntactic abilities and that they can understand reversible sentences by non-syntactic strategies only. The second scheme assumes that there is no such loss, but that the impairment in Broca's and Wernicke's aphasia is such that the more syntactic analysis is required, the more errors are made. Patients are assumed to approach this task by trying to limit their syntactic analysis to the beginning of the sentence.
Wilshire, Carolyn E; Keall, Leonie M; O'Donnell, Debra J
This paper examines the effect of semantic variables on serial recall in two contrasting aphasic cases and a group of controls. Experiment 1 manipulates word imageability and Experiment 2 manipulates semantic similarity. Controls not only showed better recall of imageable/semantically grouped lists, but under some conditions they also produced proportionately fewer phonological errors. These findings suggest that increasing the effectiveness of lexical/semantic support reduces reliance on phonological support. Consistent with this proposal, case TV, whose phonological impairment should increase his reliance on lexical/semantic support, produced abnormally low rates of phonological errors under some conditions. Conversely, case NP, who had a lexical/semantic impairment, produced abnormally high rates of phonological errors under some conditions. Analysis of serial recall curves in both aphasics and controls support the hypothesis that phonological processes are particularly critical for the recall of list-final items. However, there was no evidence that semantic support is especially crucial for list-initial recall. Controls did not exhibit stronger effects of semantic variables at list-initial position. Case NP (lexical/semantic impairment) performed disproportionately poorly on these items, but only under certain conditions.
Su, Yi-ching.; Lee, Shu-er; Chung, Yuh-mei
This study examines the comprehension patterns of various sentence types by Mandarin-speaking aphasic patients and evaluates the validity of the predictions from the Trace-Deletion Hypothesis (TDH) and the Double Dependency Hypothesis (DDH). Like English, the canonical word order in Mandarin is SVO, but the two languages differ in that the head…
Saquib, Zia; Salam, Nirmala; Nair, Rekha P.; Pandey, Nipun; Joshi, Akanksha
Human listeners are capable of identifying a speaker, over the telephone or an entryway out of sight, by listening to the voice of the speaker. Achieving this intrinsic human specific capability is a major challenge for Voice Biometrics. Like human listeners, voice biometrics uses the features of a person's voice to ascertain the speaker's identity. The best-known commercialized forms of voice Biometrics is Speaker Recognition System (SRS). Speaker recognition is the computing task of validating a user's claimed identity using characteristics extracted from their voices. This literature survey paper gives brief introduction on SRS, and then discusses general architecture of SRS, biometric standards relevant to voice/speech, typical applications of SRS, and current research in Speaker Recognition Systems. We have also surveyed various approaches for SRS.
In the 1960s, Glenn Research Center developed a magnetized fluid to draw rocket fuel into spacecraft engines while in space. Sony has incorporated the technology into its line of slim speakers by using the fluid as a liquid stand-in for the speaker's dampers, which prevent the speaker from blowing out while adding stability. The fluid helps to deliver more volume and hi-fidelity sound while reducing distortion.
Turk, Oytun; Arslan, Levent M
This paper focuses on the importance of source speaker selection for a weighted codebook mapping based voice conversion algorithm. First, the dependency on source speakers is evaluated in a subjective listening test using 180 different source-target pairs from a database of 20 speakers. Subjective scores for similarity to target speaker's voice and quality are obtained. Statistical analysis of scores confirms the dependence of performance on source speakers for both male-to-male and female-to-female transformations. A source speaker selection algorithm is devised given a target speaker and a set of source speaker candidates. For this purpose, an artificial neural network (ANN) is trained that learns the regression between a set of acoustical distance measures and the subjective scores. The estimated scores are used in source speaker ranking. The average cross-correlation coefficient between rankings obtained from median subjective scores and rankings estimated by the algorithm is 0.84 for similarity and 0.78 for quality in male-to-male transformations. The results for female-to-female transformations were less reliable with a cross-correlation value of 0.58 for both similarity and quality.
Fairley, Michael S.
This paper presents a case study of an episode in a conversation between a native English speaker (the female director of an English language school) and a non-native English speaker (a student apparently with minimal language skills) in which the native speaker is engaged in an extended telling of seemingly crucial information. The troublesome…
This presentation will provide standards upon which any attempts to meet the challenge of identifying speakers by voice should be based. It is organized into a model based on (i) application of a rigorous research program validating the system, (ii) an upgrading of the organization of the SI area, and (iii) exploitation of new technology. The second part of the presentation will describe an illustrative speech/voice approach to SI development. This effort is also based on an extensive corpus of research. It is suggested that application of the cited standards, plus the illustrative model, will permit reasonable progress to be made. Finally, a number of procedural recommendations are made; they should enhance the efficacy of the proposed approach.
Bogousslavsky, Julien; Assal, Gil
In March 1841, the year before he died of acute stroke, Stendhal, one of the most famous French novelists of the 19th century, developed a series of short-lived speech impairments which he precisely reported in his correspondence. His reports suggest that these spells were aphasic transient ischemic attacks (TIAs). The accuracy and precision of Stendhal's description exactly 20 years before Broca's presentation at the Société d'Anthropologie is remarkable since it occurred at a time when TIAs had not been studied in the medical literature and aphasia was still in its 'prehistory'. Stendhal's TIAs a few months before his fatal stroke constitute the first historical report of the warning nature of TIAs, which would be emphasized only over 100 years later.
Weinrich, M; McCall, D; Weber, C
Two severely aphasic patients were compared in their abilities to comprehend and produce locative prepositional phrases and reversible S-V-O sentences using English and C-VIC, a computer-based iconographic communication system. One patient demonstrated a significant dissociation between his performance in interpreting symbol order in C-VIC prepositional phrases vs. S-V-O sentences. Patients were able to comprehend order in C-VIC S-V-O sentences significantly better than they were able to assign symbol order when they produced these sentences. These data suggest that the procedures for assigning thematic roles to nouns in sentences are at least partially distinct for comprehension and production and that the ordering of nouns around prepositions involves conceptual processes distinct from those involved in ordering nouns around verbs.
Ihori, N; Kashiwagi, T; Kashiwagi, A; Tanabe, H
A right-handed Japanese crossed Wernicke's aphasic showed complete neologistic jargonagraphia in kanji and kana with anosognosia of his writing deficits. Prominent jargonagraphia in kanji is quite rare and has not been previously described in the literature. Marked dissociation between speaking and writing during the course suggested that his jargonagraphia might be unique to crossed aphasia. His condition was interpreted for the main part by Yokoyama, Okubo, Doseki, and Yamadori's hypothesis (1981) that free-running on of motor engrams of characters stored in the left hemisphere caused jargonagraphia in crossed aphasia. This case of jargonagraphia in kanji suggests that this hypothesis should be supplemented by the following points: (1) in kanji, not necessarily a character as a whole, but radicals or parts of radicals, function as motor units, which may be released to produce jargonagraphia in kanji; (2) free-running on of visual images as well as of kinesthetic images should be considered especially in written jargon in kanji.
Heward, W L; Eachus, H T
The effect of an instructional package, which included modeling, reinforcement, and remedial feedback on the rate, accuracy, and topography of sentences composed by four hearing impaired and aphasic children, was examined. In a specially designed classroom, students wrote sentences describing a stimulus picture on acetate sheets placed on the stage of an overhead projector which was built into each student's desk. This arrangement provided the teacher and other students immediate and continuous visual access to each student's sentences. In a multiple baseline design across behaviors, model sentences were projected and token reinforcment and remedial feedback were made contingent upon writing correct sentences containing prenominal adjectives only, then adverbs only, then prenomial adjectives plus adverbs. During baseline all student displayed poor written language skills and seldom wrote sentences containing modifiers. When the instructional package was implemented, all students demonstrated significant increases in response rate, accuracy, and percentage of correct sentences including prenominal adjectives and adverbs.
Senaha, Mirna Lie Hosogi; de Mattos Pimenta Parente, Maria Alice
The Japanese language is represented by two different codes: syllabic and logographic while Portuguese employs an alphabetic writing system. Studies on bilingual Portuguese-Japanese individuals with acquired dyslexia therefore allow an investigation of the interaction between reading strategies and characteristics of three different writing codes. The aim of this study was to examine the differential impact of an acquired brain lesion on the reading of the logographic, syllabic and alphabetic writing systems of a bilingual Portuguese-Japanese aphasic patient (PF). Results showed impaired reading in the logographic system and when reading irregularly spelled Portuguese words but no effects on reading regular words and nonwords in syllabic and alphabetic writing systems. These dissociations are interpreted according to a multi-route cognitive model of reading assuming selective damage in the lexical route can result in acquired dyslexia across at least three different writing codes. PMID:22713387
Sabbagh, Mark A.; Shafman, Dana
Preschool children typically do not learn words from ignorant or unreliable speakers. Here, we examined the mechanism by which these learning failures occur by modifying the comprehension test procedure that measures word learning. Following lexical training by a knowledgeable or ignorant speaker, 48 preschool-aged children were asked either a…
Investigates the self-reported reading habits and levels of ability in reading of ten heritage speakers of Spanish enrolled in Spanish classes at Purdue University. Results warrant more explicit focus on form instruction and activation of background knowledge for heritage speakers. (Author/VWL)
van Rossum, M. A.; van As-Brooks, C. J.; Hilgers, F. J. M.; Roozen, M.
Glottal stops are conveyed by an abrupt constriction at the level of the glottis. Tracheoesophageal (TE) speakers are known to have poor control over the new voice source (neoglottis), and this might influence the production of "glottal" stops. This study investigated how TE speakers realized "glottal" stops in abutting words…
Herbeck, Dale A.
In this article, the author examines the newly revised speakers policy in Boston College. The revised policy, defended by administrators as being consistent with past practice, differs in two important respects from the speakers policy it replaced. Lest the scope of this unfortunate policy be exaggerated, it is important to note that the policy…
Zäske, Romi; Schweinberger, Stefan R; Kawahara, Hideki
While adaptation to complex auditory stimuli has traditionally been reported for linguistic properties of speech, the present study demonstrates non-linguistic high-level aftereffects in the perception of voice identity, following adaptation to voices or faces of personally familiar speakers. In Exp. 1, prolonged exposure to speaker A's voice biased the perception of identity-ambiguous voice morphs between speakers A and B towards speaker B (and vice versa). Significantly biased voice identity perception was also observed in Exp. 2 when adaptors were videos of speakers' silently articulating faces, although effects were reduced in magnitude relative to those seen in Exp. 1. By contrast, adaptation to an unrelated speaker C elicited an intermediate proportion of speaker A identifications in both experiments. While crossmodal aftereffects on auditory identification (Exp. 2) dissipated rapidly, unimodal aftereffects (Exp. 1) were still measurable a few minutes after adaptation. These novel findings suggest contrastive coding of voice identity in long-term memory, with at least two perceptual mechanisms of voice identity adaptation: one related to auditory coding of voice characteristics, and another related to multimodal coding of familiar speaker identity.
Papafragou, Anna; Fairchild, Sarah; Cohen, Matthew L; Friedberg, Carlyn
During communication, hearers try to infer the speaker's intentions to be able to understand what the speaker means. Nevertheless, whether (and how early) preschoolers track their interlocutors' mental states is still a matter of debate. Furthermore, there is disagreement about how children's ability to consult a speaker's belief in communicative contexts relates to their ability to track someone's belief in non-communicative contexts. Here, we study young children's ability to successfully acquire a word from a speaker with a false belief; we also assess the same children's success on a traditional false belief attribution task. We show that the ability to consult the epistemic state of a speaker during word learning develops between the ages of three and five. We also show that false belief understanding in word-learning contexts proceeds similarly to standard belief-attribution contexts when the tasks are equated. Our data offer evidence for the development of mind-reading abilities during language acquisition.
Kong, Anthony Pak-Hin; Law, Sam-Po; Wat, Watson Ka-Chun; Lai, Christy
The use of co-verbal gestures is common in human communication and has been reported to assist word retrieval and to facilitate verbal interactions. This study systematically investigated the impact of aphasia severity, integrity of semantic processing, and hemiplegia on the use of co-verbal gestures, with reference to gesture forms and functions, by 131 normal speakers, 48 individuals with aphasia and their controls. All participants were native Cantonese speakers. It was found that the severity of aphasia and verbal-semantic impairment was associated with significantly more co-verbal gestures. However, there was no relationship between right-sided hemiplegia and gesture employment. Moreover, significantly more gestures were employed by the speakers with aphasia, but about 10% of them did not gesture. Among those who used gestures, content-carrying gestures, including iconic, metaphoric, deictic gestures, and emblems, served the function of enhancing language content and providing information additional to the language content. As for the non-content carrying gestures, beats were used primarily for reinforcing speech prosody or guiding speech flow, while non-identifiable gestures were associated with assisting lexical retrieval or with no specific functions. The above findings would enhance our understanding of the use of various forms of co-verbal gestures in aphasic discourse production and their functions. Speech-language pathologists may also refer to the current annotation system and the results to guide clinical evaluation and remediation of gestures in aphasia. PMID:26186256
Kalbe, Elke; Reinhold, Nadine; Brand, Matthias; Markowitsch, Hans J; Kessler, Josef
Aphasia, defined as an acquired impairment of linguistic abilities, can be accompanied by a diversity of neuropsychological dysfunction. Accordingly, the necessity to include cognitive testing in the diagnosis of aphasia is increasingly recognized. Here we present the Aphasia Check List (ACL), a new test battery for the assessment of aphasic and associated cognitive disorders. The language part of the battery provides a differentiated profile of important linguistic abilities. In addition, the ACL includes nonverbal screening tests for three neuropsychological domains: memory, attention, and reasoning. Dysfunctions in these domains have been observed in aphasic patients and can have an impact on language function. The ACL is applicable to patients with language disturbances of different etiologies, different stages of disease, and to patients with mild to severe aphasia. As the entire test duration is only about 30 minutes, the ACL is also economically valuable. It thus presents an adequate starting point in aphasia diagnosis for a wide range of patients. Here we describe the construction of the ACL, and the normative study of its original German version with 154 aphasic patients and 106 healthy comparison subjects. The ACL cognition part revealed additional neuropsychological dysfunction in the aphasia group. We present the patterns of these dysfunctions and their correlations with language deficits.
Human conversational participants depend upon the ability of their partners to recognize their intentions, so that those partners may respond appropriately. In such interactions, the speaker encodes his intentions about the hearer's response in a variety of sentence types. Instead of telling the hearer what to do, the speaker may just state his goals, and expect a response that meets these goals at least part way. This paper presents a new model for recognizing the speaker's intended meaning in determining a response. It shows that this recognition makes use of the speaker's plan, his beliefs about the domain and about the hearer's relevant capacities. 12 references.
Jacewicz, Ewa; Fox, Robert Allen; Wei, Lai
This study characterizes the speech tempo (articulation rate, excluding pauses) of two distinct varieties of American English taking into account both between-speaker and within-speaker variation. Each of 192 speakers from Wisconsin (the northern variety) and from North Carolina (the southern variety), men and women, ranging in age from children to old adults, read a set of sentences and produced a spontaneous unconstrained talk. Articulation rate in spontaneous speech was modeled using fixed-mixed effects analyses. The models explored the effects of the between-speaker factors dialect, age and gender and included each phrase and its length as a source of both between- and within-speaker variation. The major findings are: (1) Wisconsin speakers speak significantly faster and produce shorter phrases than North Carolina speakers; (2) speech tempo changes across the lifespan, being fastest for individuals in their 40s; (3) men speak faster than women and this effect is not related to the length of phrases they produce. Articulation rate in reading was slower than in speaking and the effects of gender and age also differed in reading and spontaneous speech. The effects of dialect in reading remained the same, showing again that Wisconsin speakers had faster articulation rates than did North Carolina speakers.
Jhanwar, Nitin; Raina, Ajay K.
Gaussian mixture models (GMMs) are commonly used in text-independent speaker identification systems. However, for large speaker databases, their high computational run-time limits their use in online or real-time speaker identification situations. Two-stage identification systems, in which the database is partitioned into clusters based on some proximity criteria and only a single-cluster GMM is run in every test, have been suggested in literature to speed up the identification process. However, most clustering algorithms used have shown limited success, apparently because the clustering and GMM feature spaces used are derived from similar speech characteristics. This paper presents a new clustering approach based on the concept of a pitch correlogram that captures frame-to-frame pitch variations of a speaker rather than short-time spectral characteristics like cepstral coefficient, spectral slopes, and so forth. The effectiveness of this two-stage identification process is demonstrated on the IVIE corpus of 110 speakers. The overall system achieves a run-time advantage of 500% as well as a 10% reduction of error in overall speaker identification.
Hou, Limin; Wang, Shuozhong
This paper describes an application of fractal dimensions to speech processing and speaker identification. There are several dimensions that can be used to characterize speech signals such as box dimension, correlation dimension, etc. We are mainly concerned with the generalized dimensions of speech signals as they provide more information than individual dimensions. Generalized dimensions of arbitrary orders are used in speaker identification in this work. Based on the experimental data, the artificial phase space is generated and smooth behavior of correlation integral is obtained in a straightforward and accurate analysis. Using the dimension D(2) derived from the correlation integral, the generalized dimension D(q) of an arbitrary order q is calculated. Moreover, experiments applying the generalized dimension in speaker identification have been carried out. A speaker recognition dedicated Chinese language speech corpus with PKU-SRSC, recorded by Peking University, was used in the experiments. The results are compared to a baseline speaker identification that uses MFCC features. Experimental results have indicated the usefulness of fractal dimensions in characterizing speaker's identity.
Blanken, Gerhard; Dittmann, Jürgen; Wallesch, Claus-W
We report the oral picture naming performance of the German aphasic MW who presented with frequent meaning related word substitutions (e.g. tiger ==> lion) and word finding blockings (omissions) while his phonological capacities at the single word level were nearly preserved. Targets were controlled for their 'semantic competitiveness', that is, whether there exist closely meaning related lexical competitors or not. Semantic errors were far more numerous with the highly competitive targets than with the low competitive ones. However, omissions were more frequent with the low competitive items so that the sum of the semantic errors and of the omissions was comparable in both conditions. This inverse and compensatory relationship suggests that both error types are not mutually independent. The found pattern is at odds with serial psycholinguistic theories which locate word selection (and misselection) and word form access (and blockings) at different and serially connected stages of word production but supports theories which allow for a parallel architecture in lexical activation and selection involving the word form level.
Chengappa, Shyamala; Bhat, Sapna; Padakannaya, Prakash
Reading and writing deficits in two multilingual speakers of Kannada, Hindi and English are described. Disorders of the two patients (Mr G and Ms S) had different etiologies. Mr G had severe alexia with agraphia in English as well as in Kannada and Hindi. Ms S exhibited dissociation across the languages, showing symptoms of surface dyslexia in…
Polio, Charlene; Gass, Susan M.
Because interaction gives language learners an opportunity to modify their speech upon a signal of noncomprehension, it should also have a positive effect on native speakers' (NS) comprehension of nonnative speakers (NNS). This study shows that interaction does help NSs comprehend NNSs, contrasting the claims of an earlier study that found no…
Polio, Charlene; Gass, Susan; Chapin, Laura
Implicit negative feedback has been shown to facilitate SLA, and the extent to which such feedback is given is related to a variety of task and interlocutor variables. The background of a native speaker (NS), in terms of amount of experience in interactions with nonnative speakers (NNSs), has been shown to affect the quantity of implicit negative…
Previous research shows that American learners of Japanese (AJs) tend to differ from native Japanese speakers in their compliment responses (CRs). Yokota (1986) and Shimizu (2009) have reported that AJs tend to respond more negatively than native Japanese speakers. It has also been reported that AJs' CRs tend to lack the use of avoidance or…
Bae, Eun Young; Oh, Sun-Young
Within the theoretical and methodological framework of Conversation Analysis, the present study explores the nature of the native speaker (NS) and nonnative speaker (NNS) identities in repair practices of English conversation. It has identified and analyzed in detail repair sequences in the data and has also conducted quantitative analyses in…
Weirich, Melanie; Lancia, Leonardo; Brunner, Jana
The purpose of this study is to examine and compare the amount of inter-speaker variability in the articulation of monozygotic twin pairs (MZ), dizygotic twin pairs (DZ), and pairs of unrelated twins with the goal of examining in greater depth the influence of physiology on articulation. Physiological parameters are assumed to be very similar in MZ twin pairs in contrast to DZ twin pairs or unrelated speakers, and it is hypothesized that the speaker specific shape of articulatory looping trajectories of the tongue is at least partly dependent on biomechanical properties and the speaker's individual physiology. By means of electromagnetic articulography (EMA), inter-speaker variability in the looping trajectories of the tongue back during /VCV/ sequences is analyzed. Results reveal similar looping patterns within MZ twin pairs but in DZ pairs differences in the shape of the loop, the direction of the upward and downward movement, and the amount of horizontal sliding movement at the palate are found.
Ives, D. Timothy; Smith, David R. R.; Patterson, Roy D.
The length of the vocal tract is correlated with speaker size and, so, speech sounds have information about the size of the speaker in a form that is interpretable by the listener. A wide range of different vocal tract lengths exist in the population and humans are able to distinguish speaker size from the speech. Smith et al. [J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 117, 305–318 (2005)] presented vowel sounds to listeners and showed that the ability to discriminate speaker size extends beyond the normal range of speaker sizes which suggests that information about the size and shape of the vocal tract is segregated automatically at an early stage in the processing. This paper reports an extension of the size discrimination research using a much larger set of speech sounds, namely, 180 consonant-vowel and vowel-consonant syllables. Despite the pronounced increase in stimulus variability, there was actually an improvement in discrimination performance over that supported by vowel sounds alone. Performance with vowel-consonant syllables was slightly better than with consonant-vowel syllables. These results support the hypothesis that information about the length of the vocal tract is segregated at an early stage in auditory processing. PMID:16419826
Ives, D Timothy; Smith, David R R; Patterson, Roy D
The length of the vocal tract is correlated with speaker size and, so, speech sounds have information about the size of the speaker in a form that is interpretable by the listener. A wide range of different vocal tract lengths exist in the population and humans are able to distinguish speaker size from the speech. Smith et al. [J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 117, 305-318 (2005)] presented vowel sounds to listeners and showed that the ability to discriminate speaker size extends beyond the normal range of speaker sizes which suggests that information about the size and shape of the vocal tract is segregated automatically at an early stage in the processing. This paper reports an extension of the size discrimination research using a much larger set of speech sounds, namely, 180 consonant-vowel and vowel-consonant syllables. Despite the pronounced increase in stimulus variability, there was actually an improvement in discrimination performance over that supported by vowel sounds alone. Performance with vowel-consonant syllables was slightly better than with consonant-vowel syllables. These results support the hypothesis that information about the length of the vocal tract is segregated at an early stage in auditory processing.
Muresanu, DF; Bajenaru, O; Popescu, BO; Deme, SM; Moessler, H; Meinzingen, SZ; Petrica, L; Serpe, M; Ursoniu, S
Background: The aim of our study was to assess the efficacy of Cerebrolysin administration in Broca's aphasics with acute ischemic stroke. Methods: We registered 2,212 consecutive Broca's aphasics following an acute ischemic stroke admitted in four departments of neurology in Romania, between September 2005 and September 2009. Language was evaluated with the Romanian version of the Western Aphasia Battery (WAB). The following inclusion criteria were used for this study: age 20%75 years, admission in the hospital within 12 hours from the onset of the symptoms, diagnosis of first acute left middle cerebral artery (MCA) ischemic stroke, presence of large artery disease (LAD) stroke, a NIHSS score of 5%22 points, and a therapeutic time window within 72 h. Fifty two patients were treated with Cerebrolysin (Cerebrolysin group) as an adjunctive treatment. A placebo group, which received saline infusions (n=104 patients) were matched to the NIHSS and WAB scores, gender and age of the Cerebrolysin group at baseline. We assessed spontaneous speech (SS), comprehension (C), repetition (R), naming (N), and Aphasia Quotient (AQ) scores of the two groups in an open label design, over 90 days, the mRS scores and mortality. Results: The Cerebrolysin and the placebo groups had similar age (66+/%8 versus 65+/%8 years) and sex ratio (14/38 versus 30/74). The mean AQ scores and the mean subscores for 3 subtests of WAB (SS, R, N) were similar at baseline and improved in the Cerebrolysin group significantly (p<0.05) over placebo group at all study time points. The mRS score at 90 days was also lower in the Cerebrolysin group than in the placebo group. Cerebrolysin and placebo were both tolerated and safe, and no difference in the mortality rate was seen (3.8% in each group). Conclusion: Cerebrolysin is effective for the treatment of Broca's aphasics with a first acute ischemic stroke of the left MCA territory. PMID:20945821
Valiengo, Leandro; Casati, Roberta; Bolognini, Nadia; Lotufo, Paulo A; Benseñor, Isabela M; Goulart, Alessandra C; Brunoni, André R
Aphasia is a common consequence of stroke; it is estimated that about two-thirds of aphasic patients will develop depression in the first year after the stroke. Treatment of post-stroke depression (PSD) is challenging due to the adverse effects of pharmacotherapy and difficulties in evaluating clinical outcomes, including aphasia. Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) is a novel treatment that may improve clinical outcomes in the traditionally pharmacotherapy-refractory PSD. Our aim was to evaluate the safety and efficacy of tDCS for patients with PSD and with aphasia. The Stroke Aphasic Depression Questionnaire (SADQ) and the Aphasic Depression Rating Scale (ADRS) were used to evaluate the severity of PSD. The diagnoses of PSD and aphasia were confirmed by a psychiatrist and a speech-language pathologist, respectively. In this open case series, patients (n = 4) received 10 sessions (once a day) of bilateral tDCS to the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) and two additional sessions after two and four weeks, for a total of 12 sessions. All patients exhibited improvement in depression after tDCS, as indicated by a decrease in SADQ (47.5%) and in ADRS (65.7%). This improvement was maintained four weeks after the treatment. In this preliminary, open-label study conducted in four PSD patients with aphasia, bilateral tDCS over the DLPFC was shown to induce a substantial mood improvement; tDCS was safe and well tolerated by every patient. Stroke patients with aphasia can be safely treated for PSD with tDCS. Sham-controlled studies are necessary to evaluate this technique further.
Sitek, Emilia J.; Narożańska, Ewa; Barczak, Anna; Jasińska-Myga, Barbara; Harciarek, Michał; Chodakowska-Żebrowska, Małgorzata; Kubiak, Małgorzata; Wieczorek, Dariusz; Konieczna, Seweryna; Rademakers, Rosa; Baker, Matt; Berdyński, Mariusz; Brockhuis, Bogna; Barcikowska, Maria; Żekanowski, Cezary; Heilman, Kenneth M.; Wszołek, Zbigniew K.; Sławek, Jarosław
Objectives Patients with frontotemporal dementia and parkinsonism linked to chromosome 17 (FTDP-17) may be agraphic. The study aimed at characterizing agraphia in individuals with a P301L MAPT mutation. Methods Two pairs of siblings with FTDP-17 were longitudinally examined for agraphia in relation to language and cognitive deficits. Results All patients presented with dysexecutive agraphia. In addition, in the first pair of siblings one sibling demonstrated spatial agraphia with less pronounced allographic agraphia and the other sibling had aphasic agraphia. Aphasic agraphia was also present in one sibling from the second pair. Conclusion Agraphia associated with FTDP-17 is very heterogeneous. PMID:23121543
Bishop, Jason; Keating, Patricia
How are listeners able to identify whether the pitch of a brief isolated sample of an unknown voice is high or low in the overall pitch range of that speaker? Does the speaker's voice quality convey crucial information about pitch level? Results and statistical models of two experiments that provide answers to these questions are presented. First, listeners rated the pitch levels of vowels taken over the full pitch ranges of male and female speakers. The absolute f0 of the samples was by far the most important determinant of listeners' ratings, but with some effect of the sex of the speaker. Acoustic measures of voice quality had only a very small effect on these ratings. This result suggests that listeners have expectations about f0s for average speakers of each sex, and judge voice samples against such expectations. Second, listeners judged speaker sex for the same speech samples. Again, absolute f0 was the most important determinant of listeners' judgments, but now voice quality measures also played a role. Thus it seems that pitch level judgments depend on voice quality mostly indirectly, through its information about sex. Absolute f0 is the most important information for deciding both pitch level and speaker sex.
Abel, Stefanie; Weiller, Cornelius; Huber, Walter; Willmes, Klaus
Model-oriented therapies of aphasic word production have been shown to be effective, with item-specific therapy effects being larger than generalisation effects for untrained items. However, it remains unclear whether semantic versus phonological therapy lead to differential effects, depending on type of lexical impairment. Functional imaging studies revealed that mainly left-hemisphere, perisylvian brain areas were involved in successful therapy-induced recovery of aphasic word production. However, the neural underpinnings for model-oriented therapy effects have not received much attention yet. We aimed at identifying brain areas indicating (1) general therapy effects using a naming task measured by functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) in 14 patients before and after a 4-week naming therapy, which comprised increasing semantic and phonological cueing-hierarchies. We also intended to reveal differential effects (2) of training versus generalisation, (3) of therapy methods, and (4) of type of impairment as assessed by the connectionist Dell model. Training effects were stronger than generalisation effects, even though both were significant. Furthermore, significant impairment-specific therapy effects were observed for patients with phonological disorders (P-patients). (1) Left inferior frontal gyrus, pars opercularis (IFGoper), was a positive predictor of therapy gains while the right caudate was a negative predictor. Moreover, less activation decrease due to therapy in left-hemisphere temporo-parietal language areas was positively correlated with therapy gains. (2) Naming of trained compared to untrained words yielded less activation decrease in left superior temporal gyrus (STG) and precuneus, bilateral thalamus, and right caudate due to therapy. (3) Differential therapy effects could be detected in the right superior parietal lobule for the semantic method, and in regions involving bilateral anterior and mid cingulate, right precuneus, and left middle
Opinions differ on the importance of the native speaker's concept for language teaching and testing. This Commentary maintains that it is important and seeks to explain why. Three types of grammar are distinguished, the individual's, the community's and the human faculty of language. For first language teaching and testing it is the community's…
Baptista, B. O.
Describes a study that compares Chomsky and Halle's main stress rule with Guierre's stress rules to discover which rules lead to the same word stress replacement that native speakers would give to totally unfamiliar words. Only five of Chomsky and Halle's rules were as consistently followed as Guierre's suffix rules. (SED)which+that
Gilbert, William H.
Before teachers can decide how to teach writing to nonstandard dialect speakers, they should determine whether college students can in fact learn to command a second dialect (in this case, Standard English), as well as the most effective way to provide access to command of Standard English while educating the public about the values of nonstandard…
Rosensweig, R E; Hirota, Y; Tsuda, S; Raj, K
This work validates a method for increasing the radial restoring force on the voice coil in audio speakers containing ferrofluid. In addition, a study is made of factors influencing splash loss of the ferrofluid due to shock. Ferrohydrodynamic analysis is employed throughout to model behavior, and predictions are compared to experimental data.
In the verbal linguistic systems, the target for English learners in China is educated native speaker accuracy. The target for more socially embedded interchange is yet to be established. Its basis needs to be formed from "what members of the target culture consider appropriate for foreigners and attitudes of learners themselves"…
Brown-VanHoozer, A.; Kercel, S. W.; Tucker, R. W.
The objective of this research is to develop a system capable of identifying speakers on wiretaps from a large database (>500 speakers) with a short search time duration (<30 seconds), and with better than 90% accuracy. Much previous research in speaker recognition has led to algorithms that produced encouraging preliminary results, but were overwhelmed when applied to populations of more than a dozen or so different speakers. The authors are investigating a solution to the ''huge population'' problem by seeking two completely different kinds of characterizing features. These features are extracted using the techniques of Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) and the continuous wavelet transform (CWT). NLP extracts precise neurological, verbal and non-verbal information, and assimilates the information into useful patterns. These patterns are based on specific cues demonstrated by each individual, and provide ways of determining congruency between verbal and non-verbal cues. The primary NLP modalities are characterized through word spotting (or verbal predicates cues, e.g., see, sound, feel, etc.) while the secondary modalities would be characterized through the speech transcription used by the individual. This has the practical effect of reducing the size of the search space, and greatly speeding up the process of identifying an unknown speaker. The wavelet-based line of investigation concentrates on using vowel phonemes and non-verbal cues, such as tempo. The rationale for concentrating on vowels is there are a limited number of vowels phonemes, and at least one of them usually appears in even the shortest of speech segments. Using the fast, CWT algorithm, the details of both the formant frequency and the glottal excitation characteristics can be easily extracted from voice waveforms. The differences in the glottal excitation waveforms as well as the formant frequency are evident in the CWT output. More significantly, the CWT reveals significant detail of the
Brown-VanHoozer, S.A.; Kercel, S.W.; Tucker, R.W.
The objective of this research is to develop a system capable of identifying speakers on wiretaps from a large database (>500 speakers) with a short search time duration (<30 seconds), and with better than 90% accuracy. Much previous research in speaker recognition has led to algorithms that produced encouraging preliminary results, but were overwhelmed when applied to populations of more than a dozen or so different speakers. The authors are investigating a solution to the "large population" problem by seeking two completely different kinds of characterizing features. These features are he techniques of Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) and the continuous wavelet transform (CWT). NLP extracts precise neurological, verbal and non-verbal information, and assimilates the information into useful patterns. These patterns are based on specific cues demonstrated by each individual, and provide ways of determining congruency between verbal and non-verbal cues. The primary NLP modalities are characterized through word spotting (or verbal predicates cues, e.g., see, sound, feel, etc.) while the secondary modalities would be characterized through the speech transcription used by the individual. This has the practical effect of reducing the size of the search space, and greatly speeding up the process of identifying an unknown speaker. The wavelet-based line of investigation concentrates on using vowel phonemes and non-verbal cues, such as tempo. The rationale for concentrating on vowels is there are a limited number of vowels phonemes, and at least one of them usually appears in even the shortest of speech segments. Using the fast, CWT algorithm, the details of both the formant frequency and the glottal excitation characteristics can be easily extracted from voice waveforms. The differences in the glottal excitation waveforms as well as the formant frequency are evident in the CWT output. More significantly, the CWT reveals significant detail of the glottal excitation
Johnson, Kenneth R.
In this article, pedagogical problems in adapting second language teaching techniques for teaching standard English to speakers of Ebonics are discussed. Suggestions for improving teacher training programs are made. (Author/MC)
This study surveyed members of the Association of International Educators and community volunteers to find out how international student speaker programs actually work. An international student speaker program provides speakers (from the university foreign student population) for community organizations and schools. The results of the survey (49…
Bimbot, Frédéric; Bonastre, Jean-François; Fredouille, Corinne; Gravier, Guillaume; Magrin-Chagnolleau, Ivan; Meignier, Sylvain; Merlin, Teva; Ortega-García, Javier; Petrovska-Delacrétaz, Dijana; Reynolds, Douglas A.
This paper presents an overview of a state-of-the-art text-independent speaker verification system. First, an introduction proposes a modular scheme of the training and test phases of a speaker verification system. Then, the most commonly speech parameterization used in speaker verification, namely, cepstral analysis, is detailed. Gaussian mixture modeling, which is the speaker modeling technique used in most systems, is then explained. A few speaker modeling alternatives, namely, neural networks and support vector machines, are mentioned. Normalization of scores is then explained, as this is a very important step to deal with real-world data. The evaluation of a speaker verification system is then detailed, and the detection error trade-off (DET) curve is explained. Several extensions of speaker verification are then enumerated, including speaker tracking and segmentation by speakers. Then, some applications of speaker verification are proposed, including on-site applications, remote applications, applications relative to structuring audio information, and games. Issues concerning the forensic area are then recalled, as we believe it is very important to inform people about the actual performance and limitations of speaker verification systems. This paper concludes by giving a few research trends in speaker verification for the next couple of years.
Bohnenkamp, Todd A.; Stowell, Talena; Hesse, Joy; Wright, Simon
Speakers who use an electrolarynx following a total laryngectomy no longer require pulmonary support for speech. Subsequently, chest wall movements may be affected; however, chest wall movements in these speakers are not well defined. The purpose of this investigation was to evaluate speech breathing in speakers who use an electrolarynx during…
Kim, Sunae; Kalish, Charles W.; Harris, Paul L.
Prior work shows that children can make inductive inferences about objects based on their labels rather than their appearance (Gelman, 2003). A separate line of research shows that children's trust in a speaker's label is selective. Children accept labels from a reliable speaker over an unreliable speaker (e.g., Koenig & Harris, 2005). In the…
Lee, Chao-Yang; Zhang, Yu
The effect of speaker variability on accessing the form and meaning of spoken words was evaluated in two short-term priming experiments. In the repetition priming experiment, participants listened to repeated or unrelated prime-target pairs, in which the prime and target were produced by the same speaker or different speakers. The results showed…
Ma, Lili; Woolley, Jacqueline D.
This research explores whether young children are sensitive to speaker gender when learning novel information from others. Four- and 6-year-olds ("N" = 144) chose between conflicting statements from a male versus a female speaker (Studies 1 and 3) or decided which speaker (male or female) they would ask (Study 2) when learning about the functions…
Dellwo, Volker; Leemann, Adrian; Kolly, Marie-José
Between-speaker variability of acoustically measurable speech rhythm [%V, ΔV(ln), ΔC(ln), and Δpeak(ln)] was investigated when within-speaker variability of (a) articulation rate and (b) linguistic structural characteristics was introduced. To study (a), 12 speakers of Standard German read seven lexically identical sentences under five different intended tempo conditions (very slow, slow, normal, fast, very fast). To study (b), 16 speakers of Zurich Swiss German produced 16 spontaneous utterances each (256 in total) for which transcripts were made and then read by all speakers (4096 sentences; 16 speaker × 256 sentences). Between-speaker variability was tested using analysis of variance with repeated measures on within-speaker factors. Results revealed strong and consistent between-speaker variability while within-speaker variability as a function of articulation rate and linguistic characteristics was typically not significant. It was concluded that between-speaker variability of acoustically measurable speech rhythm is strong and robust against various sources of within-speaker variability. Idiosyncratic articulatory movements were found to be the most plausible factor explaining between-speaker differences.
Ciaghi, Maddalena; Pancheri, Elisa; Miceli, Gabriele
We studied the reading performance of 340 consecutive, Italian-speaking aphasics in order to evaluate the clinical features of deep dyslexia, the functional impairments underlying semantic paralexias, and their neuranatomical correlates. Semantic paralexias were observed in 9/340 subjects (2.4%). Our data and a review of the literature show that…
The nature of research on speech communication in asymmetrical interactions, such as those between a speech therapist and patient, is discussed and some general approaches to therapy are noted. The situation of the aphasic is then considered, in which intervention is particularly difficult due to the lack of some important aspects of interpersonal…
Geranmayeh, Fatemeh; Brownsett, Sonia L E; Wise, Richard J S
The estimated prevalence of aphasia in the UK and the USA is 250 000 and 1 000 000, respectively. The commonest aetiology is stroke. The impairment may improve with behavioural therapy, and trials using cortical stimulation or pharmacotherapy are undergoing proof-of-principle investigation, but with mixed results. Aphasia is a heterogeneous syndrome, and the simple classifications according to the Broca-Wernicke-Lichtheim model inadequately describe the diverse communication difficulties with which patients may present. Greater knowledge of how intact neural networks promote recovery after aphasic stroke, either spontaneously or in response to interventions, will result in clearer hypotheses about how to improve the treatment of aphasia. Twenty-five years ago, a pioneering study on healthy participants heralded the introduction of functional neuroimaging to the study of mechanisms of recovery from aphasia. Over the ensuing decades, such studies have been interpreted as supporting one of three hypotheses, which are not mutually exclusive. The first two predate the introduction of functional neuroimaging: that recovery is the consequence of the reconstitution of domain-specific language systems in tissue around the lesion (the 'perilesional' hypothesis), or by homotopic cortex in the contralateral hemisphere (the 'laterality-shift' hypothesis). The third is that loss of transcallosal inhibition to contralateral homotopic cortex hinders recovery (the 'disinhibition' hypothesis). These different hypotheses at times give conflicting views about rehabilitative intervention; for example, should one attempt to activate or inhibit a contralateral homotopic region with cortical stimulation techniques to promote recovery? This review proposes that although the functional imaging data are statistically valid in most cases, their interpretation has often favoured one explanation while ignoring plausible alternatives. In our view, this is particularly evident when recovery is
Lee, Soomin; Shimomura, Yoshihiro; Katsuura, Tetsuo
In recent years, parametric speakers have been used in various circumstances. In our previous studies, we verified that the physiological burden of the sound of parametric speaker set at 2.6 m from the subjects was lower than that of the general speaker. However, nothing has yet been demonstrated about the effects of the sound of a parametric speaker at the shorter distance between parametric speakers the human body. Therefore, we studied this effect on physiological functions and task performance. Nine male subjects participated in this study. They completed three consecutive sessions: a 20-minute quiet period as a baseline, a 30-minute mental task period with general speakers or parametric speakers, and a 20-minute recovery period. We measured electrocardiogram (ECG) photoplethysmogram (PTG), electroencephalogram (EEG), systolic and diastolic blood pressure. Four experiments, one with a speaker condition (general speaker and parametric speaker), the other with a distance condition (0.3 m and 1.0 m), were conducted respectively at the same time of day on separate days. To examine the effects of the speaker and distance, three-way repeated measures ANOVA (speaker factor x distance factor x time factor) were conducted. In conclusion, we found that the physiological responses were not significantly different between the speaker condition and the distance condition. Meanwhile, it was shown that the physiological burdens increased with progress in time independently of speaker condition and distance condition. In summary, the effects of the parametric speaker at the 2.6 m distance were not obtained at the distance of 1 m or less.
Kersten, Alan W.; Meissner, Christian A.; Lechuga, Julia; Schwartz, Bennett L.; Albrechtsen, Justin S.; Iglesias, Adam
Three experiments provide evidence that the conceptualization of moving objects and events is influenced by one's native language, consistent with linguistic relativity theory. Monolingual English speakers and bilingual Spanish/English speakers tested in an English-speaking context performed better than monolingual Spanish speakers and bilingual…
Martelli, Francesca; Gosling, Rebecca; Kennedy, Emma; Rabie, André; Reeves, Hannah; Clifton-Hadley, Felicity; Davies, Rob; La Ragione, Roberto
Egg-related outbreaks of salmonellosis are a significant health concern. Although Salmonella Enteritidis (SE) is the major egg-associated serotype, Salmonella Typhimurium (ST) can also infect the hen's reproductive tract and contaminate eggs. Recently, monophasic and aphasic variants of ST have been reported with increased frequency in Europe, and the isolation of these variants from laying flocks triggers the same legislative restrictions associated with biphasic ST strains. However, little is known about the colonization, invasiveness and persistence of monophasic and aphasic ST strains in laying hens. In this study, seven groups of 1-day-old and point-of-lay commercial Hy-line chicken layers were separately challenged with four different strains of monophasic ST, one aphasic ST, one biphasic ST and one egg-invasive SE strain. Tissue samples and cloacal swabs (point-of-lay chickens only) were collected at regular intervals post challenge in order to recover the Salmonella challenge strains. In 1-day-old chicks, only the aphasic ST strain and the SE strain were recovered after direct plating, suggesting that the number of salmonellas colonizing the tissues of the chicks infected with the other strains was likely to be low. Interestingly, all of the strains colonized well in the point-of-lay chickens, and there was no statistical difference in the overall number of positive samples or Salmonella counts between the seven strains. Salmonella was recovered from the point-of-lay birds to the end of the study (20 days after challenge). Monophasic and aphasic ST strains colonized point-of-lay birds as efficiently as biphasic ST and SE strains. Further studies are necessary to estimate the invasiveness of these strains in naturally-infected vaccinated laying hens, and to assess the impact of natural infection on egg contamination.
Bahr, Ruth Huntley
While few individuals would argue that vocal cues can signal a person's identity, it is difficult to specify exactly which parameter(s) provide the most salient information for speaker identification. Previous literature has suggested that speaking fundamental frequency, long-term spectra, vowel formant frequencies, and speech tempo can provide speaker-specific information. However, investigations focused on automatic speaker identification have provided less than satisfactory results. These findings could be related to how each acoustic parameter is measured or, more probably, to the idea that these acoustic parameters interact in specific ways that may be more obvious in the perceptual realm and may vary across speaking situations. To further complicate matters, individuals may speak more than one language or use multiple dialects. Little is known about the effect of code switching on voice production and identification. The purpose of this presentation is to present some of the relevant literature on voice recognition and factors related to misidentification. The role of intraspeaker variability will be discussed with a special emphasis on bilingualism and bidialectalism. Implications for voice production in augmentative and alternative communication devices will be described.
Hollien, Harry; Didla, Grace; Harnsberger, James D; Hollien, Keith A
Once forensic speaker identification (SI) was recognized as an entity, it was predicted that valid computer based identification systems would quickly become a reality. This has not happened and the review to follow will provide some of the reasons why. Notable among them are (1) the sharp underestimation of its complexity and (2) its confounding with speaker verification (SV). Consideration of these (and related) issues will be followed by a brief history about how the need for SI developed and some of the responses to the problem. Since much of the SI development preceded the structuring of appropriate standards, the recommended stop-gap response described here is based on somewhat uncoordinated, but extensive, research. The product of that effort will be reviewed and organized into a platform which supports SI procedures consistent with the forensic model. Also discussed are the standards which have been established, their impact on SI development and its present limitations. How the cited approach interacts both with progress in verification and the developing SI machine-based identification systems also will be considered. Finally, a few suggestions will be made that should assist in upgrading the effectiveness of aural perceptual speaker identification (AP SI).
Reilly, Kevin J; Spencer, Kristie A
The present study investigated the effects of sequence complexity, defined in terms of phonemic similarity and phonotoactic probability, on the timing and accuracy of serial ordering for speech production in healthy speakers and speakers with either hypokinetic or ataxic dysarthria. Sequences were comprised of strings of consonant-vowel (CV) syllables with each syllable containing the same vowel, /a/, paired with a different consonant. High complexity sequences contained phonemically similar consonants, and sounds and syllables that had low phonotactic probabilities; low complexity sequences contained phonemically dissimilar consonants and high probability sounds and syllables. Sequence complexity effects were evaluated by analyzing speech error rates and within-syllable vowel and pause durations. This analysis revealed that speech error rates were significantly higher and speech duration measures were significantly longer during production of high complexity sequences than during production of low complexity sequences. Although speakers with dysarthria produced longer overall speech durations than healthy speakers, the effects of sequence complexity on error rates and speech durations were comparable across all groups. These findings indicate that the duration and accuracy of processes for selecting items in a speech sequence is influenced by their phonemic similarity and/or phonotactic probability. Moreover, this robust complexity effect is present even in speakers with damage to subcortical circuits involved in serial control for speech.
Campeanu, Sandra; Craik, Fergus I M; Alain, Claude
Speaker's voice occupies a central role as the cornerstone of auditory social interaction. Here, we review the evidence suggesting that speaker's voice constitutes an integral context cue in auditory memory. Investigation into the nature of voice representation as a memory cue is essential to understanding auditory memory and the neural correlates which underlie it. Evidence from behavioral and electrophysiological studies suggest that while specific voice reinstatement (i.e., same speaker) often appears to facilitate word memory even without attention to voice at study, the presence of a partial benefit of similar voices between study and test is less clear. In terms of explicit memory experiments utilizing unfamiliar voices, encoding methods appear to play a pivotal role. Voice congruency effects have been found when voice is specifically attended at study (i.e., when relatively shallow, perceptual encoding takes place). These behavioral findings coincide with neural indices of memory performance such as the parietal old/new recollection effect and the late right frontal effect. The former distinguishes between correctly identified old words and correctly identified new words, and reflects voice congruency only when voice is attended at study. Characterization of the latter likely depends upon voice memory, rather than word memory. There is also evidence to suggest that voice effects can be found in implicit memory paradigms. However, the presence of voice effects appears to depend greatly on the task employed. Using a word identification task, perceptual similarity between study and test conditions is, like for explicit memory tests, crucial. In addition, the type of noise employed appears to have a differential effect. While voice effects have been observed when white noise is used at both study and test, using multi-talker babble does not confer the same results. In terms of neuroimaging research modulations, characterization of an implicit memory effect
Wise, Kevin; Haake, Monica
In this article, the authors describe steps on how to develop a high-impact activity in which students build, test, and improve their own "coffee can" speakers to observe firsthand how loudspeakers work to convert electrical energy to sound. The activity is appropriate for students in grades three to six and lends itself best to students…
Robenalt, Clarice; Goldberg, Adele E.
When native speakers judge the acceptability of novel sentences, they appear to implicitly take competing formulations into account, judging novel sentences with a readily available alternative formulation to be less acceptable than novel sentences with no competing alternative. Moreover, novel sentences with a competing alternative are more…
Eadie, Tanya L; Doyle, Philip C; Hansen, Kerry; Beaudin, Paul G
The objectives of this prospective and exploratory study are to determine: (1) naïve listener preference for gender in tracheoesophageal (TE) speech when speech severity is controlled; (2) the accuracy of identifying TE speaker gender; (3) the effects of gender identification on judgments of speech acceptability (ACC) and naturalness (NAT); and (4) the acoustic basis of ACC and NAT judgments. Six male and six female adult TE speakers were matched for speech severity. Twenty naïve listeners made auditory-perceptual judgments of speech samples in three listening sessions. First, listeners performed preference judgments using a paired comparison paradigm. Second, listeners made judgments of speaker gender, speech ACC, and NAT using rating scales. Last, listeners made ACC and NAT judgments when speaker gender was provided coincidentally. Duration, frequency, and spectral measures were performed. No significant differences were found for preference of male or female speakers. All male speakers were accurately identified, but only two of six female speakers were accurately identified. Significant interactions were found between gender and listening condition (gender known) for NAT and ACC judgments. Males were judged more natural when gender was known; female speakers were judged less natural and less acceptable when gender was known. Regression analyses revealed that judgments of female speakers were best predicted with duration measures when gender was unknown, but with spectral measures when gender was known; judgments of males were best predicted with spectral measures. Naïve listeners have difficulty identifying the gender of female TE speakers. Listeners show no preference for speaker gender, but when gender is known, female speakers are least acceptable and natural. The nature of the perceptual task may affect the acoustic basis of listener judgments.
McDonald, Malcolm W.
The work done on this project this summer has been geared toward setting up the necessary infrastructure and planning to support the operation of an effective speaker outreach program. The program has been given the name, NASA AMBASSADORS. Also, individuals who become participants in the program will be known as "NASA AMBASSADORS". This summer project has been conducted by the joint efforts of this author and those of Professor George Lebo who will be issuing a separate report. The description in this report will indicate that the NASA AMBASSADOR program operates largely on the contributions of volunteers, with the assistance of persons at the Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC). The volunteers include participants in the various summer programs hosted by MSFC as well as members of the NASA Alumni League. The MSFC summer participation programs include: the Summer Faculty Fellowship Program for college and university professors, the Science Teacher Enrichment Program for middle- and high-school teachers, and the NASA ACADEMY program for college and university students. The NASA Alumni League members are retired NASA employees, scientists, and engineers. The MSFC offices which will have roles in the operation of the NASA AMBASSADORS include the Educational Programs Office and the Public Affairs Office. It is possible that still other MSFC offices may become integrated into the operation of the program. The remainder of this report will establish the operational procedures which will be necessary to sustain the NASA AMBASSADOR speaker outreach program.
Theodore, Rachel M.; Schmidt, Anna M.
Previous research suggests a perceptual bias exists for native phonotactics [D. Massaro and M. Cohen, Percept. Psychophys. 34, 338-348 (1983)] such that listeners report nonexistent segments when listening to stimuli that violate native phonotactics [E. Dupoux, K. Kakehi, Y. Hirose, C. Pallier, and J. Mehler, J. Exp. Psychol.: Human Percept. Perform. 25, 1568-1578 (1999)]. This study investigated how native-language experience affects second language processing, focusing on how native Spanish speakers perceive the English clusters /st/, /sp/, and /sk/, which represent phonotactically illegal forms in Spanish. To preserve native phonotactics, Spanish speakers often produce prothetic vowels before English words beginning with /s/ clusters. Is the influence of native phonotactics also present in the perception of illegal clusters? A stimuli continuum ranging from no vowel (e.g., ``sku'') to a full vowel (e.g., ``esku'') before the cluster was used. Four final vowel contexts were used for each cluster, resulting in 12 sCV and 12 VsCV nonword endpoints. English and Spanish listeners were asked to discriminate between pairs differing in vowel duration and to identify the presence or absence of a vowel before the cluster. Results will be discussed in terms of implications for theories of second language speech perception.
Chen, Ke; Salman, Ahmad
Speech signals convey various yet mixed information ranging from linguistic to speaker-specific information. However, most of acoustic representations characterize all different kinds of information as whole, which could hinder either a speech or a speaker recognition (SR) system from producing a better performance. In this paper, we propose a novel deep neural architecture (DNA) especially for learning speaker-specific characteristics from mel-frequency cepstral coefficients, an acoustic representation commonly used in both speech recognition and SR, which results in a speaker-specific overcomplete representation. In order to learn intrinsic speaker-specific characteristics, we come up with an objective function consisting of contrastive losses in terms of speaker similarity/dissimilarity and data reconstruction losses used as regularization to normalize the interference of non-speaker-related information. Moreover, we employ a hybrid learning strategy for learning parameters of the deep neural networks: i.e., local yet greedy layerwise unsupervised pretraining for initialization and global supervised learning for the ultimate discriminative goal. With four Linguistic Data Consortium (LDC) benchmarks and two non-English corpora, we demonstrate that our overcomplete representation is robust in characterizing various speakers, no matter whether their utterances have been used in training our DNA, and highly insensitive to text and languages spoken. Extensive comparative studies suggest that our approach yields favorite results in speaker verification and segmentation. Finally, we discuss several issues concerning our proposed approach.
Ruf, Helena T.
This dissertation investigates syntactic priming in second language (L2) development among three speaker populations: (1) less proficient L2 speakers; (2) advanced L2 speakers; and (3) LI speakers. Using confederate scripting this study examines how German speakers choose certain word orders in locative constructions (e.g., "Auf dem Tisch…
Hemphill, Leaunda S.; Hemphill, Hoyet H.
This study investigated the impact of virtual guest speakers facilitating asynchronous discussions. The setting was an online instructional technology course with 16 graduate students and two guest speakers. The research reports the quantity and level of critical thinking of the students and guests. Each posting was coded for frequency and…
Vongphoe, Michael; Zeng, Fan-Gang
Natural spoken language processing includes not only speech recognition but also identification of the speaker's gender, age, emotional, and social status. Our purpose in this study is to evaluate whether temporal cues are sufficient to support both speech and speaker recognition. Ten cochlear-implant and six normal-hearing subjects were presented with vowel tokens spoken by three men, three women, two boys, and two girls. In one condition, the subject was asked to recognize the vowel. In the other condition, the subject was asked to identify the speaker. Extensive training was provided for the speaker recognition task. Normal-hearing subjects achieved nearly perfect performance in both tasks. Cochlear-implant subjects achieved good performance in vowel recognition but poor performance in speaker recognition. The level of the cochlear implant performance was functionally equivalent to normal performance with eight spectral bands for vowel recognition but only to one band for speaker recognition. These results show a disassociation between speech and speaker recognition with primarily temporal cues, highlighting the limitation of current speech processing strategies in cochlear implants. Several methods, including explicit encoding of fundamental frequency and frequency modulation, are proposed to improve speaker recognition for current cochlear implant users.
Gut, Ulrike; Pillai, Stefanie
Various researchers have shown that second language (L2) speakers have difficulties with marking information structure in English prosodically: They deviate from native speakers not only in terms of pitch accent placement (Grosser, 1997; Gut, 2009; Ramírez Verdugo, 2002) and the type of pitch accent they produce (Wennerstrom, 1994, 1998) but also…
Hübscher, Iris; Esteve-Gibert, Núria; Igualada, Alfonso; Prieto, Pilar
This study investigates 3- to 5-year-old children's sensitivity to lexical, intonational and gestural information in the comprehension of speaker uncertainty. Most previous studies on children's understanding of speaker certainty and uncertainty across languages have focused on the comprehension of lexical markers, and little is known about the…
Kagan, Olga; Friedman, Debra
This study explored the possibility of using an ACTFL oral proficiency interview (OPI) to assess the spoken proficiency of heritage language speakers of Russian for the purpose of placing them in Russian language classes. The authors also considered whether the norm of an educated native speaker could be used as a valid reference point for Russian…
Bonilha, Heather Shaw; Deliyski, Dimitar D.; Gerlach, Terri Treman
Purpose: To ascertain the amount of phase asymmetry of the vocal fold vibration in normophonic speakers via visualization techniques and compare findings for habitual and pressed phonations. Method: Fifty-two normophonic speakers underwent stroboscopy and high-speed videoendoscopy (HSV). The HSV images were further processed into 4 visual…
Safran, Stephen P.; Safran, Joan S.
Determined whether a videotaped presentation by a speaker who is blind would more positively influence attitude change and information retention than would a presentation by a sighted speaker. Findings suggested that there were no significant main effects for either presenter or pretest conditions on the measures. (Author/BL)
Language learners' language experience is predicted to display a significant effect on their accurate perception of foreign language sounds (Flege, 1995). At the superasegmental level, there is still a debate regarding whether tone language speakers are better able to perceive foreign lexical tones than non-tone language speakers (i.e Lee et al.,…
identification operation. Openshaw & Mason (1994) obtained similar results, where the effects of noise on the speaker identification using both the mel-cepstral...George, E. B., Lee, L. T, and Kay, S. M., " Co-channel speaker separation," Proc. IEEE ICASSP, pp:828-831, 1995. 10. Openshaw , J. P. and Mason, J. S
Walshe, Margaret; Miller, Nick; Leahy, Margaret; Murray, Aisling
Background: Many factors influence listener perception of dysarthric speech. Final consensus on the role of gender and listener experience is still to be reached. The speaker's perception of his/her speech has largely been ignored. Aims: (1) To compare speaker and listener perception of the intelligibility of dysarthric speech; (2) to explore the…
Holliday, Adrian; Aboshiha, Pamela
There is now general acceptance that the traditional "nonnative speaker" label for teachers of English is problematic on sociolinguistic grounds and can be the source of employment discrimination. However, there continues to be disagreement regarding how far there is a prejudice against "nonnative speaker" teachers which is deep and sustained and…
This article reports on a study contrasting 41 native speakers (NSs) and 38 non-native speakers (NNSs) of English from two short initial teacher training courses, the Cambridge Certificate in English Language Teaching to Adults and the Trinity College London CertTESOL. After a brief history and literature review, I present findings on teachers'…
Gillis, Randall L.; Nilsen, Elizabeth S.
Knowledge transfer is most effective when speakers provide good quality (in addition to accurate) information. Two studies investigated whether preschool- (4-5 years old) and school-age (6-7 years old) children prefer speakers who provide sufficient information over those who provide insufficient (yet accurate) information. Children were provided…
Montgomery County Public Schools, Rockville, MD. Dept. of Adult Education.
This study guide was prepared to assist trained teachers of English to speakers of other languages (ESOL) who work with students at the beginning and intermediate levels. These teachers have had graduate courses in descriptive linguistics, phonology, syntax, morphology, and methodology of teaching English to speakers of other languages. The guide…
Thompson, Amy S.; Fioramonte, Amy
A sizable body of literature has been established surrounding native speaker teachers versus nonnative speaker teachers of English. Presently, a paucity of research exists related to teachers working with languages other than English. In an attempt to fill this research gap, this qualitative research study presents the experiences of novice…
Tovarek, Jaromir; Partila, Pavol; Rozhon, Jan; Voznak, Miroslav; Skapa, Jan; Uhrin, Dominik; Chmelikova, Zdenka
This article discusses the impact of multilayer neural network parameters for speaker identification. The main task of speaker identification is to find a specific person in the known set of speakers. It means that the voice of an unknown speaker (wanted person) belongs to a group of reference speakers from the voice database. One of the requests was to develop the text-independent system, which means to classify wanted person regardless of content and language. Multilayer neural network has been used for speaker identification in this research. Artificial neural network (ANN) needs to set parameters like activation function of neurons, steepness of activation functions, learning rate, the maximum number of iterations and a number of neurons in the hidden and output layers. ANN accuracy and validation time are directly influenced by the parameter settings. Different roles require different settings. Identification accuracy and ANN validation time were evaluated with the same input data but different parameter settings. The goal was to find parameters for the neural network with the highest precision and shortest validation time. Input data of neural networks are a Mel-frequency cepstral coefficients (MFCC). These parameters describe the properties of the vocal tract. Audio samples were recorded for all speakers in a laboratory environment. Training, testing and validation data set were split into 70, 15 and 15 %. The result of the research described in this article is different parameter setting for the multilayer neural network for four speakers.
Lee, James J.; Pinker, Steven
Speakers often do not state requests directly but employ innuendos such as "Would you like to see my etchings?" Though such indirectness seems puzzlingly inefficient, it can be explained by a theory of the "strategic speaker", who seeks plausible deniability when he or she is uncertain of whether the hearer is cooperative or…
Pinker, Steven; Birdsong, David
Two studies elicited native speaker and nonnative speaker judgments regarding preferred word order of the idioms known as "freezes." The results support the notion that rules of frozen word order are psychologically real and reflect universal language rules. (Author/AM)
Carvalho, Ana M.; Freire, Juliana Luna; da Silva, Antonio J. B.
Portuguese is the sixth-most-spoken native language in the world, with approximately 240,000,000 speakers. Within the United States, there is a growing demand for K-12 language programs to engage the community of Portuguese heritage speakers. According to the 2000 U.S. census, 85,000 school-age children speak Portuguese at home. As a result, more…
The goal of the study is to analyze the morphological processing of real and novel verb forms by heritage speakers of Russian in order to determine whether it differs from that of native (L1) speakers and second language (L2) learners; if so, how it is different; and which factors may guide the acquisition process. The experiment involved three…
This digest describes some of the issues involved in the Spanish language learning experiences of heritage Spanish speakers, the largest population of heritage language speakers in the United States. It describes ways in which educators can facilitate these students' language development through a better understanding of their language learning…
This paper reports on a comparative study of pauses made by L2 learners and native speakers of English while narrating picture stories. The comparison is based on the number of pauses and total amount of silence in the middle and at the end of clauses in the performance of 40 native speakers and 40 L2 learners of English. The results of the…
Ma, Joan K.-Y.; Whitehill, Tara; Cheung, Katherine S.-K.
Background: Dysprosody is a common feature in speakers with hypokinetic dysarthria. However, speech prosody varies across different types of speech materials. This raises the question of what is the most appropriate speech material for the evaluation of dysprosody. Aims: To characterize the prosodic impairment in Cantonese speakers with…
Kreitewolf, Jens; Gaudrain, Etienne; von Kriegstein, Katharina
Understanding speech from different speakers is a sophisticated process, particularly because the same acoustic parameters convey important information about both the speech message and the person speaking. How the human brain accomplishes speech recognition under such conditions is unknown. One view is that speaker information is discarded at early processing stages and not used for understanding the speech message. An alternative view is that speaker information is exploited to improve speech recognition. Consistent with the latter view, previous research identified functional interactions between the left- and the right-hemispheric superior temporal sulcus/gyrus, which process speech- and speaker-specific vocal tract parameters, respectively. Vocal tract parameters are one of the two major acoustic features that determine both speaker identity and speech message (phonemes). Here, using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), we show that a similar interaction exists for glottal fold parameters between the left and right Heschl's gyri. Glottal fold parameters are the other main acoustic feature that determines speaker identity and speech message (linguistic prosody). The findings suggest that interactions between left- and right-hemispheric areas are specific to the processing of different acoustic features of speech and speaker, and that they represent a general neural mechanism when understanding speech from different speakers.
Mandrekar, Ishan; Prevelakis, Vassilis; Turner, David Michael
The authors have developed the "Ethernet Speaker" (ES), a network-enabled single board computer embedded into a conventional audio speaker. Audio streams are transmitted in the local area network using multicast packets, and the ES can select any one of them and play it back. A key requirement for the ES is that it must be capable of playing any…
Cuenca, Maria Heliodora; Barrio, Marina M.; Anaya, Pablo; Establier, Carmelo
The purpose of this investigation is to explore the use by Spanish excellent oesophageal speakers of acoustic cues to mark syllabic stress. The speech material has consisted of five pairs of disyllabic words which only differed in stress position. Total 44 oesophageal and 9 laryngeal speakers were recorded and a computerised designed "ad…
Whitehill, Tara; Chau, Cynthia
Many speakers with repaired cleft palate have reduced intelligibility, but there are limitations with current procedures for assessing intelligibility. The aim of this study was to construct a single-word intelligibility test for speakers with cleft palate. The test used a multiple-choice identification format, and was based on phonetic contrasts…
Kidd, Celeste; White, Katherine S.; Aslin, Richard N.
The ability to infer the referential intentions of speakers is a crucial part of learning a language. Previous research has uncovered various contextual and social cues that children may use to do this. Here we provide the first evidence that children also use speech disfluencies to infer speaker intention. Disfluencies (e.g. filled pauses "uh"…
Makhoul, John I.
The feasibility and limitations of speaker adaptation in improving the performance of a "fixed" (speaker-independent) automatic speech recognition system were examined. A fixed vocabulary of 55 syllables is used in the recognition system which contains 11 stops and fricatives and five tense vowels. The results of an experiment on speaker…
Hodgson, Kevin Michael
Although the paradigm shift towards English as an International Language (EIL) has been generally accepted within the academic community, a valorization of native speaker norms continues to be prevalent among many non-native speakers (NNSs). Through data drawn from a qualitative questionnaire and proficiency assessment results (TOEIC), this mixed…
Delisle, Helga H.
Presents and analyzes two studies designed to test native speaker reaction to certain types of errors that speakers of English make when learning German. Aim was to establish the role of the medium, spoken or written, in evaluation of errors. Results show overall ratings of errors in written and spoken language are similar, although with…
McRee, Annie-Laurie; Madsen, Nikki; Eisenberg, Marla E.
This study, using data from a statewide survey (n = 332), examined teachers' practices regarding the inclusion of guest speakers to cover sexuality content. More than half of teachers (58%) included guest speakers. In multivariate analyses, teachers who taught high school, had professional preparation in health education, or who received…
Ramsey, Richard David
Teaching native and nonnative English speakers together in the same classroom can be accomplished well only by a teacher who is sensitive to the concerns of the nonnative students. Personal interviews conducted with nonnative speakers indicated that the most recurrent out-of-class problems include separation from friends and family, distinctions…
Blomgren, Michael; Goberman, Alexander M.
The goal of this study was to evaluate stuttering frequency across a multidimensional (2 x 2) hierarchy of speech performance tasks. Specifically, this study examined the interaction between changes in length of utterance and levels of speech rate stability. Forty-four adult male speakers participated in the study (22 stuttering speakers and 22…
This study aims at describing types and usages of deixis in the speech of Jordanian Urban Arabic native speakers. The present study was conducted in different settings which researcher's family members, friends, colleagues, and acquaintances took part in. Data of the study were collected through observing spontaneous speech of native speakers of…
Due to the global momentum of English as a Lingua Franca (ELF), Anglophones may perceive that there is less urgency for them to learn other languages than for speakers of other languages to learn English. The monolingual expectations of English speakers are evidenced not only in Anglophone countries but also abroad. This study reports on the…
Kinzler, Katherine D.; Corriveau, Kathleen H.; Harris, Paul L.
Across two experiments, preschool-aged children demonstrated selective learning of non-linguistic information from native-accented rather than foreign-accented speakers. In Experiment 1, children saw videos of a native- and a foreign-accented speaker of English who each spoke for 10 seconds, and then silently demonstrated different functions with…
Smith, David R R
A man, woman or child saying the same vowel do so with very different voices. The auditory system solves the complex problem of extracting what the man, woman or child has said despite substantial differences in the acoustic properties of their voices. Much of the acoustic variation between the voices of men and woman is due to changes in the underlying anatomical mechanisms for producing speech. If the auditory system knew the sex of the speaker then it could potentially correct for speaker sex related acoustic variation thus facilitating vowel recognition. This study measured the minimum stimulus duration necessary to accurately discriminate whether a brief vowel segment was spoken by a man or woman, and the minimum stimulus duration necessary to accuately recognise what vowel was spoken. Results showed that reliable vowel recognition precedesreliable speaker sex discrimination, thus questioning the use of speaker sex information in compensating for speaker sex related acoustic variation in the voice. Furthermore, the pattern of performance across experiments where the fundamental frequency and formant frequency information of speaker's voices were systematically varied, was markedly different depending on whether the task was speaker-sex discrimination or vowel recognition. This argues for there being little relationship between perception of speaker sex (indexical information) and perception of what has been said (linguistic information) at short durations.
Vongphoe, Michael; Zeng, Fan-Gang
Natural spoken language processing includes not only speech recognition but also identification of the speaker's gender, age, emotional, and social status. Our purpose in this study is to evaluate whether temporal cues are sufficient to support both speech and speaker recognition. Ten cochlear-implant and six normal-hearing subjects were presented with vowel tokens spoken by three men, three women, two boys, and two girls. In one condition, the subject was asked to recognize the vowel. In the other condition, the subject was asked to identify the speaker. Extensive training was provided for the speaker recognition task. Normal-hearing subjects achieved nearly perfect performance in both tasks. Cochlear-implant subjects achieved good performance in vowel recognition but poor performance in speaker recognition. The level of the cochlear implant performance was functionally equivalent to normal performance with eight spectral bands for vowel recognition but only to one band for speaker recognition. These results show a disassociation between speech and speaker recognition with primarily temporal cues, highlighting the limitation of current speech processing strategies in cochlear implants. Several methods, including explicit encoding of fundamental frequency and frequency modulation, are proposed to improve speaker recognition for current cochlear implant users.
Roelofs, Ardi; Verhoef, Kim
Phonological encoding is the process by which speakers retrieve phonemic segments for morphemes from memory and use the segments to assemble phonological representations of words to be spoken. When conversing in one language, bilingual speakers have to resist the temptation of encoding word forms using the phonological rules and representations of…
Mason, John S. D.; Evans, Nicholas W. D.; Stapert, Robert; Auckenthaler, Roland
Text-independent speaker recognition systems such as those based on Gaussian mixture models (GMMs) do not include time sequence information (TSI) within the model itself. The level of importance of TSI in speaker recognition is an interesting question and one addressed in this paper. Recent works has shown that the utilisation of higher-level information such as idiolect, pronunciation, and prosodics can be useful in reducing speaker recognition error rates. In accordance with these developments, the aim of this paper is to show that as more data becomes available, the basic GMM can be enhanced by utilising TSI, even in a text-independent mode. This paper presents experimental work incorporating TSI into the conventional GMM. The resulting system, known as the segmental mixture model (SMM), embeds dynamic time warping (DTW) into a GMM framework. Results are presented on the 2000-speaker SpeechDat Welsh database which show improved speaker recognition performance with the SMM.
Chabal, Sarah; Marian, Viorica
Language and vision are highly interactive. Here we show that people activate language when they perceive the visual world, and that this language information impacts how speakers of different languages focus their attention. For example, when searching for an item (e.g., clock) in the same visual display, English and Spanish speakers look at different objects. Whereas English speakers searching for the clock also look at a cloud, Spanish speakers searching for the clock also look at a gift, because the Spanish names for gift (regalo) and clock (reloj) overlap phonologically. These different looking patterns emerge despite an absence of direct linguistic input, showing that language is automatically activated by visual scene processing. We conclude that the varying linguistic information available to speakers of different languages affects visual perception, leading to differences in how the visual world is processed. PMID:26030171
Salvata, Caden; Blumstein, Sheila E; Myers, Emily B
The current study explored how listeners map the variable acoustic input onto a common sound structure representation while being able to retain phonetic detail to distinguish among the identity of talkers. An adaptation paradigm was utilized to examine areas which showed an equal neural response (equal release from adaptation) to phonetic change when spoken by the same speaker and when spoken by two different speakers, and insensitivity (failure to show release from adaptation) when the same phonetic input was spoken by a different speaker. Neural areas which showed speaker invariance were located in the anterior portion of the middle superior temporal gyrus bilaterally. These findings provide support for the view that speaker normalization processes allow for the translation of a variable speech input to a common abstract sound structure. That this process appears to occur early in the processing stream, recruiting temporal structures, suggests that this mapping takes place prelexically, before sound structure input is mapped on to lexical representations.
Choi, Lee Jin
This qualitative study of English Korean bilinguals explores the ways in which they legitimize themselves as "good" bilinguals in relation to the discourse of native-speakerism. I first survey the essentialist discourse of native speakerism still prevalent in the field of English language teaching and learning despite the growing…
Chiang, Belinda; Pochtrager, Fran
This study investigated the ways in which Chinese-born speakers of English and American-born speakers of English differed or were similar in their responses to compliments on: (1) ability; (2) appearance; and (3) possessions. Subjects were 15 Chinese and 15 American individuals, controlled for gender and status. Subjects were asked to write their…
Kaland, Constantijn; Swerts, Marc; Krahmer, Emiel
The present research investigates what drives the prosodic marking of contrastive information. For example, a typically developing speaker of a Germanic language like Dutch generally refers to a pink car as a "PINK car" (accented words in capitals) when a previously mentioned car was red. The main question addressed in this paper is whether contrastive intonation is produced with respect to the speaker's or (also) the listener's perspective on the preceding discourse. Furthermore, this research investigates the production of contrastive intonation by typically developing speakers and speakers with autism. The latter group is investigated because people with autism are argued to have difficulties accounting for another person's mental state and exhibit difficulties in the production and perception of accentuation and pitch range. To this end, utterances with contrastive intonation are elicited from both groups and analyzed in terms of function and form of prosody using production and perception measures. Contrary to expectations, typically developing speakers and speakers with autism produce functionally similar contrastive intonation as both groups account for both their own and their listener's perspective. However, typically developing speakers use a larger pitch range and are perceived as speaking more dynamically than speakers with autism, suggesting differences in their use of prosodic form.
Foreign-accented speakers are generally regarded as less educated, less reliable and less interesting than native speakers and tend to be associated with cultural stereotypes of their country of origin. This discrimination against foreign accents has, however, been discussed mainly using accented English in English-speaking countries. This study…
Kwon, Heak-bong; Song, Young-jun; Chang, Un-dong; Ahn, Jae-hyeong
In this paper, we propose a system that detects the current speaker in multi-speaker videoconferencing by using lip motion. First, the system detects the face and lip region of each of the candidate speakers using face color and shape information. Then, to detect the current speaker, it calculates the change between the current frame and the previous frame in lip region. To close-up the detected current speaker, we used two CCD cameras. One is a general CCD camera, the other is a PTZ camera controlled by RS-232C serial port. The experimental result is the proposed system capable of detecting the face of current speaker in a video feed with more than three people, regardless of orientation of the faces. With this system, it only takes 4 to 5 seconds to zoom in on the speaker from the initial reference image. Also, it is a more efficient image transmission system for such things as video conferencing and internet broadcasting because it offers a close up face image at a resolution of 320x240, while at the same time providing a whole background image.
Bressmann, Tim; Radovanovic, Bojana; Harper, Susan; Klaiman, Paula; Fisher, David; Kulkarni, Gajanan V
Manyspeakers with cleft palate develop atypical consonant productions, especially for pressure consonants such as plosives, fricatives, and affricates. The present study investigated the nature of nasal sound errors. The participants were eight female and three male speakers with cleft palate between the ages of 6 to 20. Speakers were audio-recorded, and midsagittal tongue movement was captured with ultrasound. The speakers repeated vowel-consonant-vowel with the vowels /α/, /i/, and /u/ and the alveolar and velar nasal consonants /n/ and //. The productions were reviewed by three listeners. The participants showed a variety of different placement errors and insertions of plosives, as well as liquid productions. There was considerable error variability between and within speakers, often related to the different vowel contexts. Three speakers co-produced click sounds. The study demonstrated the wide variety of sound errors that some speakers with cleft palate may demonstrate for nasal sounds. Nasal sounds, ideally in different vowel contexts, should be included in articulation screenings for speakers with cleft palate, perhaps more than is currently the case.
Koenig, Laura L.; Mencl, W. Einar; Lucero, Jorge C.
This study investigates cross-speaker differences in the factors that predict voicing thresholds during abduction-adduction gestures in six normal women. Measures of baseline airflow, pulse amplitude, subglottal pressure, and fundamental frequency were made at voicing offset and onset during intervocalic /h/, produced in varying vowel environments and at different loudness levels, and subjected to relational analyses to determine which factors were most strongly related to the timing of voicing cessation or initiation. The data indicate that (a) all speakers showed differences between voicing offsets and onsets, but the degree of this effect varied across speakers; (b) loudness and vowel environment have speaker-specific effects on the likelihood of devoicing during /h/; and (c) baseline flow measures significantly predicted times of voicing offset and onset in all participants, but other variables contributing to voice timing differed across speakers. Overall, the results suggest that individual speakers have unique methods of achieving phonatory goals during running speech. These data contribute to the literature on individual differences in laryngeal function, and serve as a means of evaluating how well laryngeal models can reproduce the range of voicing behavior used by speakers during running speech tasks.
Michelas, Amandine; Portes, Cristel; Champagne-Lavau, Maud
Recent studies on a variety of languages have shown that a speaker's commitment to the propositional content of his or her utterance can be encoded, among other strategies, by pitch accent types. Since prior research mainly relied on lexical-stress languages, our understanding of how speakers of a non-lexical-stress language encode speaker commitment is limited. This paper explores the contribution of the last pitch accent of an intonation phrase to convey speaker commitment in French, a language that has stress at the phrasal level as well as a restricted set of pitch accents. In a production experiment, participants had to produce sentences in two pragmatic contexts: unbiased questions (the speaker had no particular belief with respect to the expected answer) and negatively biased questions (the speaker believed the proposition to be false). Results revealed that negatively biased questions consistently exhibited an additional unaccented F0 peak in the preaccentual syllable (an H+!H* pitch accent) while unbiased questions were often realized with a rising pattern across the accented syllable (an H* pitch accent). These results provide evidence that pitch accent types in French can signal the speaker's belief about the certainty of the proposition expressed in French. It also has implications for the phonological model of French intonation.
Jiang, Xiaoming; Pell, Marc D
In speech communication, listeners must accurately decode vocal cues that refer to the speaker's mental state, such as their confidence or 'feeling of knowing'. However, the time course and neural mechanisms associated with online inferences about speaker confidence are unclear. Here, we used event-related potentials (ERPs) to examine the temporal neural dynamics underlying a listener's ability to infer speaker confidence from vocal cues during speech processing. We recorded listeners' real-time brain responses while they evaluated statements wherein the speaker's tone of voice conveyed one of three levels of confidence (confident, close-to-confident, unconfident) or were spoken in a neutral manner. Neural responses time-locked to event onset show that the perceived level of speaker confidence could be differentiated at distinct time points during speech processing: unconfident expressions elicited a weaker P2 than all other expressions of confidence (or neutral-intending utterances), whereas close-to-confident expressions elicited a reduced negative response in the 330-500 msec and 550-740 msec time window. Neutral-intending expressions, which were also perceived as relatively confident, elicited a more delayed, larger sustained positivity than all other expressions in the 980-1270 msec window for this task. These findings provide the first piece of evidence of how quickly the brain responds to vocal cues signifying the extent of a speaker's confidence during online speech comprehension; first, a rough dissociation between unconfident and confident voices occurs as early as 200 msec after speech onset. At a later stage, further differentiation of the exact level of speaker confidence (i.e., close-to-confident, very confident) is evaluated via an inferential system to determine the speaker's meaning under current task settings. These findings extend three-stage models of how vocal emotion cues are processed in speech comprehension (e.g., Schirmer & Kotz, 2006) by
Thomson, Ron I.
One of the most influential models of second language (L2) speech perception and production [Flege, Speech Perception and Linguistic Experience (York, Baltimore, 1995) pp. 233-277] argues that during initial stages of L2 acquisition, perceptual categories sharing the same or nearly the same acoustic space as first language (L1) categories will be processed as members of that L1 category. Previous research has generally been limited to testing these claims on binary L2 contrasts, rather than larger portions of the perceptual space. This study examines the development of 10 English vowel categories by 20 Mandarin L1 learners of English. Imitation of English vowel stimuli by these learners, at 6 data collection points over the course of one year, were recorded. Using a statistical pattern recognition model, these productions were then assessed against native speaker norms. The degree to which the learners' perception/production shifted toward the target English vowels and the degree to which they matched L1 categories in ways predicted by theoretical models are discussed. The results of this experiment suggest that previous claims about perceptual assimilation of L2 categories to L1 categories may be too strong.
Garon, J E
Presentation skills are vital to clinical systems managers. This article covers four steps to successful presentations: 1) tailoring for an audience, 2) organizing a presentation, 3) mastering presentation techniques, and 4) creating effective visual aids. Tailoring for the audience entails learning about the audience and matching the presentation to their knowledge, educational level, and interests. Techniques to curry favor with an audience include: establishing common ground, relating through universal experiences, and pushing "hot buttons." Tasks involved in organizing the presentation for maximum audience interest begin with arranging the key points in a transparent organizational scheme. Audience attention is sustained using "hooks," such as graphics, anecdotes, humor, and quotations. Basic presentation techniques include appropriate rehearsal, effective eye contact with an audience, and anxiety-reducing strategies. Visual aids include flip charts, slides, transparencies, and computer presentations. Criteria for selecting the type of visual aids are delineated based on audience size and type of presentation, along with respective advantages and disadvantages. The golden rule for presentations is "Never show a slide for which you have to apologize." Rules to maximize visibility and effectiveness, including use of standard templates, sans serif fonts, dark backgrounds with light letters, mixed cases, and effective graphics, ensure that slides or projected computer images are clear and professional. Taken together, these strategies will enhance the delivery of the presentation and decrease the speaker's anxiety.
Mazaira-Fernandez, Luis Miguel; Álvarez-Marquina, Agustín; Gómez-Vilda, Pedro
Person identification, especially in critical environments, has always been a subject of great interest. However, it has gained a new dimension in a world threatened by a new kind of terrorism that uses social networks (e.g., YouTube) to broadcast its message. In this new scenario, classical identification methods (such as fingerprints or face recognition) have been forcedly replaced by alternative biometric characteristics such as voice, as sometimes this is the only feature available. The present study benefits from the advances achieved during last years in understanding and modeling voice production. The paper hypothesizes that a gender-dependent characterization of speakers combined with the use of a set of features derived from the components, resulting from the deconstruction of the voice into its glottal source and vocal tract estimates, will enhance recognition rates when compared to classical approaches. A general description about the main hypothesis and the methodology followed to extract the gender-dependent extended biometric parameters is given. Experimental validation is carried out both on a highly controlled acoustic condition database, and on a mobile phone network recorded under non-controlled acoustic conditions.
Mazaira-Fernandez, Luis Miguel; Álvarez-Marquina, Agustín; Gómez-Vilda, Pedro
Person identification, especially in critical environments, has always been a subject of great interest. However, it has gained a new dimension in a world threatened by a new kind of terrorism that uses social networks (e.g., YouTube) to broadcast its message. In this new scenario, classical identification methods (such as fingerprints or face recognition) have been forcedly replaced by alternative biometric characteristics such as voice, as sometimes this is the only feature available. The present study benefits from the advances achieved during last years in understanding and modeling voice production. The paper hypothesizes that a gender-dependent characterization of speakers combined with the use of a set of features derived from the components, resulting from the deconstruction of the voice into its glottal source and vocal tract estimates, will enhance recognition rates when compared to classical approaches. A general description about the main hypothesis and the methodology followed to extract the gender-dependent extended biometric parameters is given. Experimental validation is carried out both on a highly controlled acoustic condition database, and on a mobile phone network recorded under non-controlled acoustic conditions. PMID:26442245
Li, Dongdong; Yang, Yingchun
In the field of information security, voice is one of the most important parts in biometrics. Especially, with the development of voice communication through the Internet or telephone system, huge voice data resources are accessed. In speaker recognition, voiceprint can be applied as the unique password for the user to prove his/her identity. However, speech with various emotions can cause an unacceptably high error rate and aggravate the performance of speaker recognition system. This paper deals with this problem by introducing a cost-sensitive learning technology to reweight the probability of test affective utterances in the pitch envelop level, which can enhance the robustness in emotion-dependent speaker recognition effectively. Based on that technology, a new architecture of recognition system as well as its components is proposed in this paper. The experiment conducted on the Mandarin Affective Speech Corpus shows that an improvement of 8% identification rate over the traditional speaker recognition is achieved. PMID:24999492
Cuenca, María Heliodora; Barrio, Marina M; Anaya, Pablo; Establier, Carmelo
The purpose of this investigation is to explore the use by Spanish excellent oesophageal speakers of acoustic cues to mark syllabic stress. The speech material has consisted of five pairs of disyllabic words which only differed in stress position. Total 44 oesophageal and 9 laryngeal speakers were recorded and a computerised designed ad hoc perceptual test was run in order to assess the accurate realisation of stress. The items produced by eight excellent oesophageal speakers with highest accuracy levels in the perception experiment were analysed acoustically with Praat, to be compared with the laryngeal control group. Measures of duration, fundamental frequency, spectral balance and overall intensity were taken for each target vowel and syllable. Results revealed that Spanish excellent oesophageal speakers were able to retain appropriate acoustic relations between stressed and unstressed syllables. Although spectral balance revealed as a strong cue for syllabic stress in the two voicing modes, a different hierarchy of acoustic cues in each voicing mode was found.
Williams, W. J.; Bossemeyer, R. W.
Time-Frequency Analysis has previously been successfully applied to characterize and quantify a variety of acoustic signals, including marine mammal sounds. In this research, Time-Frequency analysis is applied to human speech signals in an effort to reveal signal structure salient to the biometric speaker verification challenge. Prior approaches to speaker verification have relied upon signal processing analysis such as linear prediction or weighted Cepstrum spectral representations of segments of speech and classification techniques based on stochastic pattern matching. The authors believe that the classification of identity of a speaker based on time-frequency representation of short time events occurring in speech could have substantial advantages. Using these ideas, a speaker verification algorithm was developed1 and has been refined over the past several years. In this presentation, the authors describe the testing of the algorithm using a large speech database, the results obtained, and recommendations for further improvements.
Caballero Morales, Santiago Omar; Cox, Stephen J.
Dysarthria is a motor speech disorder characterized by weakness, paralysis, or poor coordination of the muscles responsible for speech. Although automatic speech recognition (ASR) systems have been developed for disordered speech, factors such as low intelligibility and limited phonemic repertoire decrease speech recognition accuracy, making conventional speaker adaptation algorithms perform poorly on dysarthric speakers. In this work, rather than adapting the acoustic models, we model the errors made by the speaker and attempt to correct them. For this task, two techniques have been developed: (1) a set of "metamodels" that incorporate a model of the speaker's phonetic confusion matrix into the ASR process; (2) a cascade of weighted finite-state transducers at the confusion matrix, word, and language levels. Both techniques attempt to correct the errors made at the phonetic level and make use of a language model to find the best estimate of the correct word sequence. Our experiments show that both techniques outperform standard adaptation techniques.
Investigated how English and Japanese speakers syllabify two-syllable English words and nonwords with single intervocalic consonants Results are discussed in light of linguistic and psycholinguistic theories of syllabification. (Author/VWL)
Sell, Gregory; Suied, Clara; Elhilali, Mounya; Shamma, Shihab
Listeners' ability to discriminate unfamiliar voices is often susceptible to the effects of manipulations of acoustic characteristics of the utterances. This vulnerability was quantified within a task in which participants determined if two utterances were spoken by the same or different speakers. Results of this task were analyzed in relation to a set of historical and novel parameters in order to hypothesize the role of those parameters in the decision process. Listener performance was first measured in a baseline task with unmodified stimuli, and then compared to responses with resynthesized stimuli under three conditions: (1) normalized mean-pitch; (2) normalized duration; and (3) normalized linear predictive coefficients (LPCs). The results of these experiments suggest that perceptual speaker discrimination is robust to acoustic changes, though mean-pitch and LPC modifications are more detrimental to a listener's ability to successfully identify same or different speaker pairings. However, this susceptibility was also found to be partially dependent on the specific speaker and utterances.
Hanulíková, Adriana; Carreiras, Manuel
An important property of speech is that it explicitly conveys features of a speaker's identity such as age or gender. This event-related potential (ERP) study examined the effects of social information provided by a speaker's gender, i.e., the conceptual representation of gender, on subject-verb agreement. Despite numerous studies on agreement, little is known about syntactic computations generated by speaker characteristics extracted from the acoustic signal. Slovak is well suited to investigate this issue because it is a morphologically rich language in which agreement involves features for number, case, and gender. Grammaticality of a sentence can be evaluated by checking a speaker's gender as conveyed by his/her voice. We examined how conceptual information about speaker gender, which is not syntactic but rather social and pragmatic in nature, is interpreted for the computation of agreement patterns. ERP responses to verbs disagreeing with the speaker's gender (e.g., a sentence including a masculine verbal inflection spoken by a female person 'the neighbors were upset because I (∗)stoleMASC plums') elicited a larger early posterior negativity compared to correct sentences. When the agreement was purely syntactic and did not depend on the speaker's gender, a disagreement between a formally marked subject and the verb inflection (e.g., the womanFEM (∗)stoleMASC plums) resulted in a larger P600 preceded by a larger anterior negativity compared to the control sentences. This result is in line with proposals according to which the recruitment of non-syntactic information such as the gender of the speaker results in N400-like effects, while formally marked syntactic features lead to structural integration as reflected in a LAN/P600 complex.
Spectrogram Cochleagram (b) 0 dB Multi-ratio E T ot al 10 12 14 16 18 20 512 hidden units 1024 hidden units 1536 hidden units (c) Figure 4: Average...adaptation of gender-pair-dependent DNNs and multi-ratio training, are introduced later to relax constraints. A factorial hidden Markov model (FHMM...networks, speaker-dependent modeling, speaker adaptation, multi-condition training, factorial hidden Markov model. OSU Dept. of Computer Science and
References  J. Makhoul, F. Kubala, T. Leek, D. Liu, L. Nguyen, R. Schwartz, and A. Srivastava, “Speech and language technologies for audio indexing ...DATES COVERED (From - To) 4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE SPEAKER CLUSTERING FOR A MIXTURE OF SINGING AND READING (PREPRINT) 5a. CONTRACT NUMBER FA8750-09...based on reading and singing speech samples for each speaker. As a speaking style, singing introduces changes in the time-frequency structure of a
Honorof, Douglas N.; Whalen, D. H.
Fundamental frequency (F0) is used for many purposes in speech, but its linguistic significance is based on its relation to the speaker's range, not its absolute value. While it may be that listeners can gauge a specific pitch relative to a speaker's range by recognizing it from experience, whether they can do the same for an unfamiliar voice is an open question. The present experiment explored that question. Twenty native speakers of English (10 male, 10 female) produced the vowel /opena/ with a spoken (not sung) voice quality at varying pitches within their own ranges. Listeners then judged, without familiarization or context, where each isolated F0 lay within each speaker's range. Correlations were high both for the entire range (0.721) and for the range minus the extremes (0.609). Correlations were somewhat higher when the F0s were related to the range of all the speakers, either separated by sex (0.830) or pooled (0.848), but several factors discussed here may help account for this pattern. Regardless, the present data provide strong support for the hypothesis that listeners are able to locate an F0 reliably within a range without external context or prior exposure to a speaker's voice. .
Holt, Yolanda Feimster; Jacewicz, Ewa; Fox, Robert Allen
Purpose Atypical duration of speech segments can signal a speech disorder. This study examined variation in vowel duration in African American English (AAE) relative to White American English (WAE) speakers living in the same dialect region in the South in order to characterize the nature of systematic variation between the two groups. The goal was to establish whether segmental durations in minority populations differ from the well-established patterns in mainstream populations. Method Participants were 32 AAE and 32 WAE speakers differing in age who, in their childhood, attended either segregated (older speakers) or integrated (younger speakers) public schools. Speech materials consisted of 14 vowels produced in hVd-frame. Results AAE vowels were significantly longer than WAE vowels. Vowel duration did not differ as a function of age. The temporal tense-lax contrast was minimized for AAE relative to WAE. Female vowels were significantly longer than male vowels for both AAE and WAE. Conclusions African Americans should be expected to produce longer vowels relative to White speakers in a common geographic area. These longer durations are not deviant but represent a typical feature of AAE. This finding has clinical importance in guiding assessments of speech disorders in AAE speakers. PMID:25951511
Smith, David R. R.; Patterson, Roy D.
Glottal-pulse rate (GPR) and vocal-tract length (VTL) are both related to speaker size and sex-however, it is unclear how they interact to determine our perception of speaker size and sex. Experiments were designed to measure the relative contribution of GPR and VTL to judgements of speaker size and sex. Vowels were scaled to represent people with different GPRs and VTLs, including many well beyond the normal population values. In a single interval, two response rating paradigm, listeners judged the size (using a 7-point scale) and sex/age of the speaker (man, woman, boy, or girl) of these scaled vowels. Results from the size-rating experiments show that VTL has a much greater influence upon judgements of speaker size than GPR. Results from the sex-categorization experiments show that judgements of speaker sex are influenced about equally by GPR and VTL for vowels with normal GPR and VTL values. For abnormal combinations of GPR and VTL, where low GPRs are combined with short VTLs, VTL has more influence than GPR in sex judgements. [Work supported by the UK MRC (G9901257) and the German Volkswagen Foundation (VWF 1/79 783).
A complex tone composed of only higher-order harmonics typically elicits a pitch percept equivalent to the tone's missing fundamental frequency (f0). When judging the direction of residue pitch change between two such tones, however, listeners may have completely opposite perceptual experiences depending on whether they are biased to perceive changes based on the overall spectrum or the missing f0 (harmonic spacing). Individual differences in residue pitch change judgments are reliable and have been associated with musical experience and functional neuroanatomy. Tone languages put greater pitch processing demands on their speakers than non-tone languages, and we investigated whether these lifelong differences in linguistic pitch processing affect listeners' bias for residue pitch. We asked native tone language speakers and native English speakers to perform a pitch judgment task for two tones with missing fundamental frequencies. Given tone pairs with ambiguous pitch changes, listeners were asked to judge the direction of pitch change, where the direction of their response indicated whether they attended to the overall spectrum (exhibiting a spectral bias) or the missing f0 (exhibiting a fundamental bias). We found that tone language speakers are significantly more likely to perceive pitch changes based on the missing f0 than English speakers. These results suggest that tone-language speakers' privileged experience with linguistic pitch fundamentally tunes their basic auditory processing.
Hancock, Adrienne; Colton, Lindsey; Douglas, Fiacre
Intonation is commonly addressed in voice and communication feminization therapy, yet empirical evidence of gender differences for intonation is scarce and rarely do studies examine how it relates to gender perception of transgender speakers. This study examined intonation of 12 males, 12 females, six female-to-male, and 14 male-to-female transgender speakers describing a Norman Rockwell image. Several intonation measures were compared between biological gender groups, between perceived gender groups, and between male-to-female (MTF) speakers who were perceived as male, female, or ambiguous gender. Speakers with a larger percentage of utterances with upward intonation and a larger utterance semitone range were perceived as female by listeners, despite no significant differences between the actual intonation of the four gender groups. MTF speakers who do not pass as female appear to use less upward and more downward intonations than female and passing MTF speakers. Intonation has potential for use in transgender communication therapy because it can influence perception to some degree.
Monetta, Laura; Cheang, Henry S; Pell, Marc D
The ability to interpret vocal (prosodic) cues during social interactions can be disrupted by Parkinson's disease, with notable effects on how emotions are understood from speech. This study investigated whether PD patients who have emotional prosody deficits exhibit further difficulties decoding the attitude of a speaker from prosody. Vocally inflected but semantically nonsensical 'pseudo-utterances' were presented to listener groups with and without PD in two separate rating tasks. Task I required participants to rate how confident a speaker sounded from their voice and Task 2 required listeners to rate how polite the speaker sounded for a comparable set of pseudo-utterances. The results showed that PD patients were significantly less able than HC participants to use prosodic cues to differentiate intended levels of speaker confidence in speech, although the patients could accurately detect the politelimpolite attitude of the speaker from prosody in most cases. Our data suggest that many PD patients fail to use vocal cues to effectively infer a speaker's emotions as well as certain attitudes in speech such as confidence, consistent with the idea that the basal ganglia play a role in the meaningful processing of prosodic sequences in spoken language (Pell & Leonard, 2003).
Sobel, David M; Macris, Deanna M
Many studies suggest that preschoolers rely on individuals' histories of generating accurate lexical information when learning novel lexical information from them. The present study examined whether children used a speaker's accuracy about one kind of linguistic knowledge to make inferences about another kind of linguistic knowledge, focusing specifically on syntax and the lexicon. In Experiment 1, we presented children with 2 live speakers who were lexically accurate, but differed in their appropriate use of subject-verb agreement. Older 4-year-olds, but not younger 4-year-olds, relied on the accurate speaker to learn new labels for novel objects. We suggest only the older 4-year-olds might have registered that the inaccurate speaker was an unreliable source of novel linguistic information. In Experiment 2, 4-year-olds observed 2 speakers whose utterances were syntactically accurate, but differed in lexical accuracy. All 4-year-olds used the speakers' accuracy to guide how they learned novel lexical information and novel irregular plurals, but not how they learned novel irregular past tense forms that children often regularize. These results suggest that when learning novel syntactic information, reliability information might interact with underlying linguistic regularity.
Lee, Jimin; Shaiman, Susan; Weismer, Gary
This study examined the relationship (1) between acoustic vowel space and the corresponding tongue kinematic vowel space and (2) between formant frequencies (F1 and F2) and tongue x-y coordinates for the same time sampling point. Thirteen healthy female adults participated in this study. Electromagnetic articulography and synchronized acoustic recordings were utilized to obtain vowel acoustic and tongue kinematic data across ten speech tasks. Intra-speaker analyses showed that for 10 of the 13 speakers the acoustic vowel space was moderately to highly correlated with tongue kinematic vowel space; much weaker correlations were obtained for inter-speaker analyses. Correlations of individual formants with tongue positions showed that F1 varied strongly with tongue position variations in the y dimension, whereas F2 was correlated in equal magnitude with variations in the x and y positions. For within-speaker analyses, the size of the acoustic vowel space is likely to provide a reasonable inference of size of the tongue working space for most speakers; unfortunately there is no a priori, obvious way to identify the speakers for whom the covariation is not significant. A second conclusion is that F1 variations reflect tongue height, but F2 is a much more complex reflection of tongue variation in both dimensions.
Spotorno, Nicola; Healey, Meghan; McMillan, Corey T; Rascovsky, Katya; Irwin, David J; Clark, Robin; Grossman, Murray
Some extent of ambiguity is ubiquitous in everyday conversations. For example, words have multiple meaning and very common pronouns, like "he" and "she" (anaphoric pronouns), have little meaning on their own and refer to a noun that has been previously introduced in the discourse. Ambiguity triggers a decision process that is not a subroutine of language processing but rather a more general domain resource. Therefore non-aphasic patients with limited decision-making capability can encounter severe limitation in language processing due to extra linguistic limitations. In the present study, we test patients with behavioral variant frontotemporal degeneration (bvFTD), focusing on anaphora as a paradigmatic example of ambiguity resolution in the linguistic domain. bvFTD is characterized by gray matter (GM) atrophy in prefrontal cortex, but relative sparing of peri-Sylvian cortex. A group of patients with parietal disease due to corticobasal syndrome (CBS) was also tested here in order to investigate the specific role of prefrontal cortex in the task employed in the current study. Participants were presented with a pair of sentences in which the first sentence contained two nouns while the second contained a pronoun. In the experimental (ambiguous) condition, both nouns are plausible referents of the pronoun, thus requiring decision-making resources. The results revealed that bvFTD patients are significantly less accurate than healthy seniors in identifying the correct referent of a pronoun in the ambiguous condition, although CBS patients were as accurate as healthy seniors. Imaging analyses related bvFTD patients' performance to GM atrophy in ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC). These results suggest that bvFTD patients have difficulties in decision processes that involve the resolution of an ambiguity.
Stahl, Benjamin; Henseler, Ilona; Turner, Robert; Geyer, Stefan; Kotz, Sonja A.
There is an ongoing debate as to whether singing helps left-hemispheric stroke patients recover from non-fluent aphasia through stimulation of the right hemisphere. According to recent work, it may not be singing itself that aids speech production in non-fluent aphasic patients, but rhythm and lyric type. However, the long-term effects of melody and rhythm on speech recovery are largely unknown. In the current experiment, we tested 15 patients with chronic non-fluent aphasia who underwent either singing therapy, rhythmic therapy, or standard speech therapy. The experiment controlled for phonatory quality, vocal frequency variability, pitch accuracy, syllable duration, phonetic complexity and other influences, such as the acoustic setting and learning effects induced by the testing itself. The results provide the first evidence that singing and rhythmic speech may be similarly effective in the treatment of non-fluent aphasia. This finding may challenge the view that singing causes a transfer of language function from the left to the right hemisphere. Instead, both singing and rhythmic therapy patients made good progress in the production of common, formulaic phrases—known to be supported by right corticostriatal brain areas. This progress occurred at an early stage of both therapies and was stable over time. Conversely, patients receiving standard therapy made less progress in the production of formulaic phrases. They did, however, improve their production of non-formulaic speech, in contrast to singing and rhythmic therapy patients, who did not. In light of these results, it may be worth considering the combined use of standard therapy and the training of formulaic phrases, whether sung or rhythmically spoken. Standard therapy may engage, in particular, left perilesional brain regions, while training of formulaic phrases may open new ways of tapping into right-hemisphere language resources—even without singing. PMID:23450277
Spotorno, Nicola; Healey, Meghan; McMillan, Corey T.; Rascovsky, Katya; Irwin, David J.; Clark, Robin; Grossman, Murray
Some extent of ambiguity is ubiquitous in everyday conversations. For example, words have multiple meaning and very common pronouns, like “he” and “she” (anaphoric pronouns), have little meaning on their own and refer to a noun that has been previously introduced in the discourse. Ambiguity triggers a decision process that is not a subroutine of language processing but rather a more general domain resource. Therefore non-aphasic patients with limited decision-making capability can encounter severe limitation in language processing due to extra linguistic limitations. In the present study, we test patients with behavioral variant frontotemporal degeneration (bvFTD), focusing on anaphora as a paradigmatic example of ambiguity resolution in the linguistic domain. bvFTD is characterized by gray matter (GM) atrophy in prefrontal cortex, but relative sparing of peri-Sylvian cortex. A group of patients with parietal disease due to corticobasal syndrome (CBS) was also tested here in order to investigate the specific role of prefrontal cortex in the task employed in the current study. Participants were presented with a pair of sentences in which the first sentence contained two nouns while the second contained a pronoun. In the experimental (ambiguous) condition, both nouns are plausible referents of the pronoun, thus requiring decision-making resources. The results revealed that bvFTD patients are significantly less accurate than healthy seniors in identifying the correct referent of a pronoun in the ambiguous condition, although CBS patients were as accurate as healthy seniors. Imaging analyses related bvFTD patients’ performance to GM atrophy in ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC). These results suggest that bvFTD patients have difficulties in decision processes that involve the resolution of an ambiguity. PMID:26578928
Stahl, Benjamin; Henseler, Ilona; Turner, Robert; Geyer, Stefan; Kotz, Sonja A
There is an ongoing debate as to whether singing helps left-hemispheric stroke patients recover from non-fluent aphasia through stimulation of the right hemisphere. According to recent work, it may not be singing itself that aids speech production in non-fluent aphasic patients, but rhythm and lyric type. However, the long-term effects of melody and rhythm on speech recovery are largely unknown. In the current experiment, we tested 15 patients with chronic non-fluent aphasia who underwent either singing therapy, rhythmic therapy, or standard speech therapy. The experiment controlled for phonatory quality, vocal frequency variability, pitch accuracy, syllable duration, phonetic complexity and other influences, such as the acoustic setting and learning effects induced by the testing itself. The results provide the first evidence that singing and rhythmic speech may be similarly effective in the treatment of non-fluent aphasia. This finding may challenge the view that singing causes a transfer of language function from the left to the right hemisphere. Instead, both singing and rhythmic therapy patients made good progress in the production of common, formulaic phrases-known to be supported by right corticostriatal brain areas. This progress occurred at an early stage of both therapies and was stable over time. Conversely, patients receiving standard therapy made less progress in the production of formulaic phrases. They did, however, improve their production of non-formulaic speech, in contrast to singing and rhythmic therapy patients, who did not. In light of these results, it may be worth considering the combined use of standard therapy and the training of formulaic phrases, whether sung or rhythmically spoken. Standard therapy may engage, in particular, left perilesional brain regions, while training of formulaic phrases may open new ways of tapping into right-hemisphere language resources-even without singing.
Gao, Yuan; Low, Renae; Jin, Putai; Sweller, John
Using a cognitive load theory approach, we investigated the effects of speaker variability when individuals are learning to understand English as a foreign language (EFL) spoken by foreign-accented speakers. The use of multiple, Indian-accented speakers was compared to that of a single speaker for Chinese EFL learners with a higher or lower…
Herman, Julia; Cote, Nicole Gilbert; Reilly, Lenore; Binder, Katherine S.
The goal of this study was to compare the literacy skills of adult native English and native Spanish ABE speakers. Participants were 169 native English speakers and 124 native Spanish speakers recruited from five prior research projects. The results showed that the native Spanish speakers were less skilled on morphology and passage comprehension…
McDonald, Malcolm W.
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and, in particular, the Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) have played pivotal roles in the advancement of space exploration and space-related science and discovery since the early 1960's. Many of the extraordinary accomplishments and advancements of NASA and MSFC have gone largely unheralded to the general public, though they often border on the miraculous. This lack of suitable and deserved announcement of these "miracles" seems to have occurred because NASA engineers and scientists are inclined to regard extraordinary accomplishment as a normal course of events. The goal in this project has been to determine an effective structure and mechanism for communicating to the general public the extent to which our investment in our US civilian space program, NASA, is, in fact, a very wise investment. The project has involved discerning important messages of truth which beg to be conveyed to the public. It also sought to identify MSFC personnel who are particularly effective as messengers or communicators. A third aspect of the project was to identify particular target audiences who would appreciate knowing the facts about their NASA investment. The intent is to incorporate the results into the formation of an effective, proactive MSFC speakers bureau. A corollary accomplishment for the summer was participation in the formation of an educational outreach program known as Nasa Ambassadors. Nasa Ambassadors are chosen from the participants in the various MSFC summer programs including: Summer Faculty Fellowship Program (SFFP), Science Teacher Enrichment Program (STEP), Community College Enrichment Program (CCEP), Joint Venture (JOVE) program, and the NASA Academy program. NASA Ambassadors agree to make pre-packaged NASA-related presentations to non-academic audiences in their home communities. The packaged presentations were created by a small cadre of participants from the 1996 MSFC summer programs, volunteering
to represent this speaker/ phoneme combination. For the individual speaker experiments, we chose model order for each speaker/ phoneme combination in...separately trained a model on each speaker/ phoneme combination. In phoneme - class (PC) classifier training, we grouped all speakers of a given phoneme into a...single phoneme . When the subspace is limited, CSIS may be able to find a better statistical model of the distribu- tiuon. A second piece of evidence that
Spironelli, Chiara; Angrilli, Alessandro
The present study examined linguistic plastic reorganization of language through Evoked Potentials in a group of 17 non-fluent aphasic patients who had suffered left perisylvian focal lesions, and showed a good linguistic recovery. Language reorganisation was probed with three linguistic tasks (Phonological, Semantic, Orthographic), the early word recognition potential (N150) and the later phonological-related component (N350). Results showed the typical left-lateralised posterior N150 in healthy controls (source: left Fusiform Gyrus), that was bilateral (Semantic) or right sided (Phonological task) in patients (sources: right Inferior/Middle Temporal and Fusiform Gyri). As regards N350, controls revealed different intra- and inter-hemispheric linguistic activation across linguistic tasks, whereas patients exhibited greater activity in left intact sites, anterior and posterior to the damaged area, in all tasks (sources: Superior Frontal Gyri). A comprehensive neurofunctional model is presented, describing how complete intra- and inter-hemispheric reorganisation of the linguistic networks occurs after aphasic damage in the strategically dominant left perisylvian linguistic centres.
Spironelli, Chiara; Angrilli, Alessandro
The present study examined linguistic plastic reorganization of language through Evoked Potentials in a group of 17 non-fluent aphasic patients who had suffered left perisylvian focal lesions, and showed a good linguistic recovery. Language reorganisation was probed with three linguistic tasks (Phonological, Semantic, Orthographic), the early word recognition potential (N150) and the later phonological-related component (N350). Results showed the typical left-lateralised posterior N150 in healthy controls (source: left Fusiform Gyrus), that was bilateral (Semantic) or right sided (Phonological task) in patients (sources: right Inferior/Middle Temporal and Fusiform Gyri). As regards N350, controls revealed different intra- and inter-hemispheric linguistic activation across linguistic tasks, whereas patients exhibited greater activity in left intact sites, anterior and posterior to the damaged area, in all tasks (sources: Superior Frontal Gyri). A comprehensive neurofunctional model is presented, describing how complete intra- and inter-hemispheric reorganisation of the linguistic networks occurs after aphasic damage in the strategically dominant left perisylvian linguistic centres. PMID:26217919
A study of the translation process compared the decisions that native speakers (experts) and non-native speakers (non-experts) made that influenced resulting translations. Subjects were 40 students, graduate students, and faculty in a university foreign language department. English language proficiency was measured for native speakers by using the…
Kamourieh, Salwa; Braga, Rodrigo M.; Leech, Robert; Newbould, Rexford D.; Malhotra, Paresh; Wise, Richard J. S.
Remembering what a speaker said depends on attention. During conversational speech, the emphasis is on working memory, but listening to a lecture encourages episodic memory encoding. With simultaneous interference from background speech, the need for auditory vigilance increases. We recreated these context-dependent demands on auditory attention in 2 ways. The first was to require participants to attend to one speaker in either the absence or presence of a distracting background speaker. The second was to alter the task demand, requiring either an immediate or delayed recall of the content of the attended speech. Across 2 fMRI studies, common activated regions associated with segregating attended from unattended speech were the right anterior insula and adjacent frontal operculum (aI/FOp), the left planum temporale, and the precuneus. In contrast, activity in a ventral right frontoparietal system was dependent on both the task demand and the presence of a competing speaker. Additional multivariate analyses identified other domain-general frontoparietal systems, where activity increased during attentive listening but was modulated little by the need for speech stream segregation in the presence of 2 speakers. These results make predictions about impairments in attentive listening in different communicative contexts following focal or diffuse brain pathology. PMID:25596592
Walton, Julie Hart
Sustained /a/ sounds were tape recorded from 50 adult male African-American and 50 adult male European -American speakers. A one-second acoustic sample was extracted from the mid-portion of each sustained vowel. Vowel samples from each African-American subject were randomly paired with those from European-American subjects. A one-second inter-stimulus interval of silence separated the two voices in the pair; the order of the voices in each pair was randomly selected. When presented with a tape of the 50 voice pairs, listeners could determine the race of the speaker with 60% accuracy. An acoustic analysis of the voices revealed that African-American speakers had a tendency toward greater frequency perturbation, significantly greater amplitude perturbation, and a significantly lower harmonics-to-noise ratio than the European-American speakers. An analysis of the listeners' responses revealed that the listeners may have relied on a combination of increased frequency perturbation, increased amplitude perturbation, and a lower harmonics-to-noise ratio to identify the African-American speakers.
Brunskog, Jonas; Gade, Anders Christian; Bellester, Gaspar Payá; Calbo, Lilian Reig
Teachers often suffer from health problems related to their voice. These problems are related to their working environment, including the acoustics of the lecture rooms. However, there is a lack of studies linking the room acoustic parameters to the voice produced by the speaker. In this pilot study, the main goals are to investigate whether objectively measurable parameters of the rooms can be related to an increase in the voice sound power produced by speakers and to the speakers' subjective judgments about the rooms. In six different rooms with different sizes, reverberation times, and other physical attributes, the sound power level produced by six speakers was measured. Objective room acoustic parameters were measured in the same rooms, including reverberation time and room gain, and questionnaires were handed out to people who had experience talking in the rooms. It is found that in different rooms significant changes in the sound power produced by the speaker can be found. It is also found that these changes mainly have to do with the size of the room and to the gain produced by the room. To describe this quality, a new room acoustic quantity called "room gain" is proposed.
Whitehill, Tara L
Most theoretical models of dysarthria have been developed based on research using individuals speaking English or other Indo-European languages. Studies of individuals with dysarthria speaking other languages can allow investigation into the universality of such models, and the interplay between language-specific and language-universal aspects of dysarthria. In this article, studies of Cantonese- and Mandarin-Chinese speakers with dysarthria are reviewed. The studies focused on 2 groups of speakers: those with cerebral palsy and those with Parkinson's disease. Key findings are compared with similar studies of English speakers. Since Chinese is tonal in nature, the impact of dysarthria on lexical tone has received considerable attention in the literature. The relationship between tone [which involves fundamental frequency (F(0)) control at the syllable level] and intonation (involving F(0) control at the sentential level) has received more recent attention. Many findings for Chinese speakers with dysarthria support earlier findings for English speakers, thus affirming the language-universal aspect of dysarthria. However, certain differences, which can be attributed to the distinct phonologies of Cantonese and Mandarin, highlight the language-specific aspects of the condition.
Reducing acoustic noise in audio recordings is an ongoing problem that plagues many applications. This noise is hard to reduce because of interfering sources and non-stationary behavior of the overall background noise. Many single channel noise reduction algorithms exist but are limited in that the more the noise is reduced; the more the signal of interest is distorted due to the fact that the signal and noise overlap in frequency. Specifically acoustic background noise causes problems in the area of speaker identification. Recording a speaker in the presence of acoustic noise ultimately limits the performance and confidence of speaker identification algorithms. In situations where it is impossible to control the environment where the speech sample is taken, noise reduction filtering algorithms need to be developed to clean the recorded speech of background noise. Because single channel noise reduction algorithms would distort the speech signal, the overall challenge of this project was to see if spatial information provided by microphone arrays could be exploited to aid in speaker identification. The goals are: (1) Test the feasibility of using microphone arrays to reduce background noise in speech recordings; (2) Characterize and compare different multichannel noise reduction algorithms; (3) Provide recommendations for using these multichannel algorithms; and (4) Ultimately answer the question - Can the use of microphone arrays aid in speaker identification?
Kamourieh, Salwa; Braga, Rodrigo M; Leech, Robert; Newbould, Rexford D; Malhotra, Paresh; Wise, Richard J S
Remembering what a speaker said depends on attention. During conversational speech, the emphasis is on working memory, but listening to a lecture encourages episodic memory encoding. With simultaneous interference from background speech, the need for auditory vigilance increases. We recreated these context-dependent demands on auditory attention in 2 ways. The first was to require participants to attend to one speaker in either the absence or presence of a distracting background speaker. The second was to alter the task demand, requiring either an immediate or delayed recall of the content of the attended speech. Across 2 fMRI studies, common activated regions associated with segregating attended from unattended speech were the right anterior insula and adjacent frontal operculum (aI/FOp), the left planum temporale, and the precuneus. In contrast, activity in a ventral right frontoparietal system was dependent on both the task demand and the presence of a competing speaker. Additional multivariate analyses identified other domain-general frontoparietal systems, where activity increased during attentive listening but was modulated little by the need for speech stream segregation in the presence of 2 speakers. These results make predictions about impairments in attentive listening in different communicative contexts following focal or diffuse brain pathology.
Ladich, Friedrich; Wysocki, Lidia Eva
The auditory evoked potential (AEP) recording technique has proved to be a very versatile and successful approach in studying auditory sensitivities in fishes. The AEP protocol introduced by Kenyon, Ladich and Yan in 1998 using an air speaker with the fish positioned at the water surface gave auditory thresholds in goldfish very close to behavioural values published before. This approach was subsequently modified by several laboratories, raising the question whether speaker choice (air vs. underwater) or the position of subjects affect auditory threshold determination. To answer these questions, the hearing specialist Carassius auratus was measured using an air speaker, an underwater speaker and alternately positioning the fish directly at or 5cm below the water surface. Mean hearing thresholds obtained using these 4 different setups varied by 5.6dB, 3.7dB and 4dB at 200Hz, 500Hz and 1000Hz, respectively. Accordingly, pronounced differences in AEP thresholds in goldfish measured in different laboratories reflect other factors than speaker used and depth of the test subjects, namely variations in threshold definition, background noise, population differences, or calibration errors.
This paper presents and evaluates a modular/hybrid connectionist system for speaker identification. Modularity has emerged as a powerful technique for reducing the complexity of connectionist systems, and allowing a priori knowledge to be incorporated into their design. Text-independent speaker identification is an inherently complex task where the amount of training data is often limited. It thus provides an ideal domain to test the validity of the modular/hybrid connectionist approach. To achieve such identification, we develop, in this paper, an architecture based upon the cooperation of several connectionist modules, and a Hidden Markov Model module. When tested on a population of 102 speakers extracted from the DARPA-TIMIT database, perfect identification was obtained.
Mayer, Connor; Gick, Bryan
This study looks at how the conflicting goals of chewing and speech production are reconciled by examining the acoustic and articulatory output of talking while chewing. We consider chewing to be a type of perturbation with regard to speech production, but with some important differences. Ultrasound and acoustic measurements were made while participants chewed gum and produced various utterances containing the sounds /s/, /ʃ/, and /r/. Results show a great deal of individual variation in articulation and acoustics between speakers, but consistent productions and maintenance of relative acoustic distances within speakers. Although chewing interfered with speech production, and this interference manifested itself in a variety of ways across speakers, the objectives of speech production were indirectly achieved within the constraints and variability introduced by individual chewing strategies.
Robinson, E J; Champion, H; Mitchell, P
Children between the ages of 3 years 7 months and 6 years 5 months experienced a contradiction between what they knew or guessed to be inside a box and what they were told by an adult. The authors investigated whether children believed what they were told by asking them to make a final judgment about the box's content. Children tended to believe utterances from speakers who were better informed than they themselves were and to disbelieve those from less well-informed speakers, with no age-related differences. This behavior implies an understanding of the speaker's knowledge and suggests that children can learn from oral input while being appropriately skeptical of its truth. Children also gave explicit knowledge judgments on trials on which no utterances were given. Performance on knowledge trials was less accurate than, and unrelated to, performance on utterance trials. Research on children's developing explicit theory of mind needs to be broadened to include behavioral indexes of understanding the mind.
Nappa, Rebecca; Arnold, Jennifer E
A series of experiments explore the effects of attention-directing cues on pronoun resolution, contrasting four specific hypotheses about the interpretation of ambiguous pronouns he and she: (1) it is driven by grammatical rules, (2) it is primarily a function of social processing of the speaker's intention to communicate, (3) it is modulated by the listener's own egocentric attention, and (4) it is primarily a function of learned probabilistic cues. Experiment 1 demonstrates that pronoun interpretation is guided by the well-known N1 (first-mention) bias, which is also modulated by both the speaker's gaze and pointing gestures. Experiment 2 demonstrates that a low-level visual capture cue has no effect on pronoun interpretation, in contrast with the social cue of pointing. Experiment 3 uses a novel intentional cue: the same attention-capture flash as in Experiment 2, but with instructions that the cue is intentionally created by the speaker. This cue does modulate the N1 bias, demonstrating the importance of information about the speaker's intentions to pronoun resolution. Taken in sum, these findings demonstrate that pronoun resolution is a process best categorized as driven by an appreciation of the speaker's communicative intent, which may be subserved by a sensitivity to predictive cues in the environment.
Kersten, Alan W; Meissner, Christian A; Lechuga, Julia; Schwartz, Bennett L; Albrechtsen, Justin S; Iglesias, Adam
Three experiments provide evidence that the conceptualization of moving objects and events is influenced by one's native language, consistent with linguistic relativity theory. Monolingual English speakers and bilingual Spanish/English speakers tested in an English-speaking context performed better than monolingual Spanish speakers and bilingual Spanish/English speakers tested in a Spanish-speaking context at sorting novel, animated objects and events into categories on the basis of manner of motion, an attribute that is prominently marked in English but not in Spanish. In contrast, English and Spanish speakers performed similarly at classifying on the basis of path, an attribute that is prominently marked in both languages. Similar results were obtained regardless of whether categories were labeled by novel words or numbered, suggesting that an English-speaking tendency to focus on manner of motion is a general phenomenon and not limited to word learning. Effects of age of acquisition of English were also observed on the performance of bilinguals, with early bilinguals performing similarly in the 2 language contexts and later bilinguals showing greater contextual variation.
Zhang, Cuiling; van de Weijer, Joost; Cui, Jingxu
Speech variation of speakers is a crucial issue for speaker recognition and identification, especially for forensic practice. Greater intra-speaker variation is one main reason for incorrect speaker identification in real forensic situations. Understanding the stability of acoustic parameters and their variation in speech is therefore significant for the evaluation of effective parameters for speaker identification. In this paper, all vowels in Standard Chinese including five monophthongs, eight diphthongs and four triphthongs were combined with lateral /l/. Finally, 15 lateral syllables with different tones for 10 speakers were selected and acoustically analyzed. Central frequencies of the first four formants for each syllable were measured for quantitative comparison of intra- and inter-speaker variation in order to provide a general idea of speaker variation in Standard Chinese, and finally serving for forensic application. Results show that the overall intra-speaker variation is less than the inter-speaker variation in great extent under laboratory condition though occasionally they are contrary. This supports the basis for forensic speaker identification, that is, intra-speaker variation should be less than inter-speaker variation in many acoustic features, and further validates the probability and reliability of forensic speaker identification.
Mayer, Richard E.; Sobko, Kristina; Mautone, Patricia D.
In 2 experiments, learners who were seated at a computer workstation received a narrated animation about lightning formation. Then, they took a retention test, a transfer test, and rated the speaker. The results are consistent with social agency theory, which posits that social cues in multimedia messages can encourage learners to interpret…
This study investigated the effects of first language prosodic transfer on the perception and production of English lexical stress and the relation between stress perception and production by second language learners. To test the effect of Thai tonal distribution rules and stress patterns on native Thai speakers' perception and production of…
Harris, Catherine L.
Bilingual speakers report experiencing stronger emotions when speaking and hearing their first language compared to their second. Does this occur even when a second language is learned early and becomes the dominant language? Spanish-English bilinguals who had grown up in the USA (early learners) or those who were first exposed to English during…
Chen, Yang; Ng, Manwa L; Li, Tie-Shan
The present study attempted to test the postulate that sounds of a foreign language that are familiar can be produced with less accuracy than sounds that are new to second language (L2) learners. The first two formant frequencies (F1 and F2) were obtained from the 11 English monophthong vowels produced by 40 Cantonese-English (CE) bilingual and 40 native American English monolingual speakers. Based on F1 and F2, compact-diffuse (C-D) and grave-acute (G-A) values, and Euclidean Distance (ED) associated with the English vowels were evaluated and correlated with the perceived amount of accent present in the vowels. Results indicated that both male and female CE speakers exhibited different vowel spaces compared to their AE counterparts. While C-D and G-A indicated that acquisition of familiar and new vowels were not particularly different, ED values suggested better performance in CE speakers' productions of familiar vowels over new vowels. In conclusion, analyses based on spectral measurements obtained from the English vowel sounds produced by CE speakers did not provide favourable evidence to support the Speech Learning Model (SLM) proposed by Flege (1995) . Nevertheless, for both familiar and new sounds, English back vowels were found to be produced with greater inaccuracy than English front vowels.
Raman, Ilhan; Weekes, Brendan S.
The Turkish script is characterised by completely transparent bidirectional mappings between orthography and phonology. To date, there has been no reported evidence of acquired dyslexia in Turkish speakers leading to the naive view that reading and writing problems in Turkish are probably rare. We examined the extent to which phonological…
Boroditsky, Lera; Fuhrman, Orly; McCormick, Kelly
Time is a fundamental domain of experience. In this paper we ask whether aspects of language and culture affect how people think about this domain. Specifically, we consider whether English and Mandarin speakers think about time differently. We review all of the available evidence both for and against this hypothesis, and report new data that…
Craith, M. Nic
Examines the Irish language community in Northern Ireland, and questions the validity of the census results of 1991. Particular focus is on the concept of a mother tongue and its relevance for speakers of Irish in the United Kingdom. Discusses measures to improve the status of Irish as a result of the Good Friday Agreement. (Author/VWL)
Beasley, Christopher; Torres-Harding, Susan; Pedersen, Paula J.
Recent societal trends indicate more tolerance for homosexuality, but prejudice remains on college campuses. Speaker panels are commonly used in classrooms as a way to educate students about sexual diversity and decrease negative attitudes toward sexual diversity. The advent of computer-delivered instruction presents a unique opportunity to…
This article speaks to teachers who have been paired with native speakers (NSs) who have never taught before, and the feelings of frustration, discouragement, and nervousness on the teacher's behalf that can occur as a result. In order to effectively tackle this situation, teachers need to work together with the NSs. Teachers in this scenario…
Brown, Amanda; Gullberg, Marianne
Native speakers show systematic variation in a range of linguistic domains as a function of a variety of sociolinguistic variables. This article addresses native language variation in the context of multicompetence, i.e. knowledge of two languages in one mind (Cook, 1991). Descriptions of motion were elicited from functionally monolingual and…
Mol, Lisette; Krahmer, Emiel; van de Sandt-Koenderman, Mieke
Purpose: To study the independence of gesture and verbal language production. The authors assessed whether gesture can be semantically compensatory in cases of verbal language impairment and whether speakers with aphasia and control participants use similar depiction techniques in gesture. Method: The informativeness of gesture was assessed in 3…
Speech and speaker recognition technology has made very significant progress in the past 50 years. The progress can be summarized by the following changes: (1) from template matching to corpus-base statistical modeling, e.g., HMM and n-grams, (2) from filter bank/spectral resonance to Cepstral features (Cepstrum + DCepstrum + DDCepstrum), (3) from heuristic time-normalization to DTW/DP matching, (4) from gdistanceh-based to likelihood-based methods, (5) from maximum likelihood to discriminative approach, e.g., MCE/GPD and MMI, (6) from isolated word to continuous speech recognition, (7) from small vocabulary to large vocabulary recognition, (8) from context-independent units to context-dependent units for recognition, (9) from clean speech to noisy/telephone speech recognition, (10) from single speaker to speaker-independent/adaptive recognition, (11) from monologue to dialogue/conversation recognition, (12) from read speech to spontaneous speech recognition, (13) from recognition to understanding, (14) from single-modality (audio signal only) to multi-modal (audio/visual) speech recognition, (15) from hardware recognizer to software recognizer, and (16) from no commercial application to many practical commercial applications. Most of these advances have taken place in both the fields of speech recognition and speaker recognition. The majority of technological changes have been directed toward the purpose of increasing robustness of recognition, including many other additional important techniques not noted above.
The idea of a language-specific articulatory setting (AS), an underlying posture of the articulators during speech, has existed for centuries [Laver, Historiogr. Ling. 5 (1978)], but until recently it had eluded direct measurement. In an analysis of x-ray movies of French and English monolingual speakers, Gick et al. [Phonetica (in press)] link AS to inter-speech posture, allowing measurement of AS without interference from segmental targets during speech, and they give quantitative evidence showing AS to be language-specific. In the present study, ultrasound and Optotrak are used to investigate whether bilingual English-French speakers have two ASs, and whether this varies depending on the mode (monolingual or bilingual) these speakers are in. Specifically, for inter-speech posture of the lips, lip aperture and protrusion are measured using Optotrak. For inter-speech posture of the tongue, tongue root retraction, tongue body and tongue tip height are measured using optically-corrected ultrasound. Segmental context is balanced across the two languages ensuring that the sets of sounds before and after an inter-speech posture are consistent across languages. By testing bilingual speakers, vocal tract morphology across languages is controlled for. Results have implications for L2 acquisition, specifically the teaching and acquisition of pronunciation.
ROBINETT, BETTY WALLACE; AND OTHERS
THE CONTENTS OF THIS SERIES (A COMPILATION OF PAPERS READ AT THE TEACHERS OF ENGLISH TO SPEAKERS OF OTHER LANGUAGES (TESOL) CONFERENCE, NEW YORK CITY, MARCH 17-19, 1966) ARE GROUPED ACCORDING TO GENERAL SUBJECT (AND AUTHORS)--(1) TESOL AS A PROFESSIONAL FIELD (S. OHANNESSIAN, A.H. MARCKWARDT, G. CAPELLE, D. GLICKSBERG), (2) REPORTS ON SPECIAL…
Robinett, Betty Wallace, Ed.
The contents of this series (a compilation of papers read at the Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages Conference, New York City, March 17-19, 1966) are grouped according to general subject and authors--(1) TESOL as a Professional Field, by S. Ohannessian, A.H. Marckwardt, G. Capelle, D. Glicksberg; (2) Reports on Special Programs, by…
English speakers talk and think about Time in terms of physical space. The past is behind us, and the future is in front of us. In this way, we "map" space onto Time. This dissertation addresses the specificity of this physical space, or its topography. Inspired by languages like Yupno (Nunez, et al., 2012) and Bamileke-Dschang (Hyman,…
In response to new theoretical claims and inconclusive empirical findings regarding relative clauses in East Asian languages, this study examined the factors relevant to relative clause production by Korean heritage speakers. Gap position (subject vs. object), animacy (plus or minus animate), and the topicality of head nouns (plus or minus…
Bolger, Patrick A.; Zapata, Gabriela C.
This paper focuses on the dearth of language-processing research addressing Spanish heritage speakers in assimilationist communities. First, we review key offline work on this population, and we then summarize the few psycholinguistic (online) studies that have already been carried out. In an attempt to encourage more such research, in the next…
Wiener, Florence D.; And Others
Normative data for 198 urban children (four to eight years old) who speak Black American English (BAE) were obtained on the Test of Language Development. Results revealed speakers of BAE differed significantly in performance from children on whom test was standardized. Difference in performance was reflected in overall test scores and in…
This study aimed at looking at perception of English palatal codas by Korean speakers of English to determine if perception problems are the source of production problems. In particular, first, this study looked at the possible first language effect on the perception of English palatal codas. Second, a possible perceptual source of vowel epenthesis after English palatal codas was investigated. In addition, individual factors, such as length of residence, TOEFL score, gender and academic status, were compared to determine if those affected the varying degree of the perception accuracy. Eleven adult Korean speakers of English as well as three native speakers of English participated in the study. Three sets of a perception test including identification of minimally different English pseudo- or real words were carried out. The results showed that, first, the Korean speakers perceived the English codas significantly worse than the Americans. Second, the study supported the idea that Koreans perceived an extra /i/ after the final affricates due to final release. Finally, none of the individual factors explained the varying degree of the perceptional accuracy. In particular, TOEFL scores and the perception test scores did not have any statistically significant association.
Foreign language learners purportedly demonstrate intercultural communicative competence in native speaker (NS) chat rooms through self-initiated negotiation sequences, including those triggered by pragmatic issues and cultural content. This study identified and classified one-to-one NS-learner negotiations between intermediate learners and NS of…
Stephens, Elizabeth; Suarez, Sarah; Koenig, Melissa
Testimony provides children with a rich source of knowledge about the world and the people in it. However, testimony is not guaranteed to be veridical, and speakers vary greatly in both knowledge and intent. In this chapter, we argue that children encounter two primary types of conflicts when learning from speakers: conflicts of knowledge and conflicts of interest. We review recent research on children's selective trust in testimony and propose two distinct mechanisms supporting early epistemic vigilance in response to the conflicts associated with speakers. The first section of the chapter focuses on the mechanism of coherence checking, which occurs during the process of message comprehension and facilitates children's comparison of information communicated through testimony to their prior knowledge, alerting them to inaccurate, inconsistent, irrational, and implausible messages. The second section focuses on source-monitoring processes. When children lack relevant prior knowledge with which to evaluate testimonial messages, they monitor speakers themselves for evidence of competence and morality, attending to cues such as confidence, consensus, access to information, prosocial and antisocial behavior, and group membership.
The study investigates strategies and contexts for supporting the literacy development of young, augmented speakers, whose difficulties in literacy learning are not explained by their levels of cognition alone. Indeed, quantitative and qualitative differences exist in their literacy experiences at home and school. In this study, four primary…
Kessler, Luise; Schweinberger, Stefan R.
A speaker’s gaze behaviour can provide perceivers with a multitude of cues which are relevant for communication, thus constituting an important non-verbal interaction channel. The present study investigated whether direct eye gaze of a speaker affects the likelihood of listeners believing truth-ambiguous statements. Participants were presented with videos in which a speaker produced such statements with either direct or averted gaze. The statements were selected through a rating study to ensure that participants were unlikely to know a-priori whether they were true or not (e.g., “sniffer dogs cannot smell the difference between identical twins”). Participants indicated in a forced-choice task whether or not they believed each statement. We found that participants were more likely to believe statements by a speaker looking at them directly, compared to a speaker with averted gaze. Moreover, when participants disagreed with a statement, they were slower to do so when the statement was uttered with direct (compared to averted) gaze, suggesting that the process of rejecting a statement as untrue may be inhibited when that statement is accompanied by direct gaze. PMID:27643789
Glisan, Eileen W.; Drescher, Victor
A study examined the occurrence of specific grammatical structures (double object pronouns, nominalization with "lo," demonstrative adjectives/pronouns, and possessive adjectives/pronouns) in oral samples of native speaker Spanish and compared the results with the treatment of the structures in six beginning-level college Spanish textbooks.…
This study is concerned with the acquisition of English verb transitivity by native speakers of Japanese. Both a verb's semantic class (Levin, 1993; Pinker, 1989) and its frequency (Ambridge et al., 2008) have been proposed to influence the acquisition of verbs in L1. For example, verbs whose meaning entails change-of-location or…
This handbook is designed for native English speakers who are preparing to teach English in China. The contents of the handbook are selected based on the findings of face-to-face interviews and a questionnaire survey conducted by the author with experienced native English teachers to China as the partial fulfillment of her Master's in TESOL…
A study examined the use of the ethnic language as it relates to ethnic self-identification in three generations of a bilingual family of Mexican origin in San Antonio (Texas). Family members were speakers of Texas Spanish and English. Two questionnaires and follow-up discussions examined fluency in Spanish and English; language preferences;…
Ludi, Georges; Py, Bernard
The bi/plurilingual person is a unique speaker-hearer who should be studied as such and not always in comparison with the monolingual. As such, unilingual linguistic models and perspectives based on the idea that bilingualism is a duplication of competences in two languages (or more) are unsuitable to describe plural practices in multilingual…
24. AIR-CONDITIONING DUCT, WINCH CONTROL BOX, AND SPEAKER AT STATION 85.5 OF MST. FOLDED-UP PLATFORM ON RIGHT OF PHOTO. - Vandenberg Air Force Base, Space Launch Complex 3, Launch Pad 3 East, Napa & Alden Roads, Lompoc, Santa Barbara County, CA
Montrul, Silvina; Sanchez-Walker, Noelia
We report the results of two studies that investigate the factors contributing to non-native-like ability in child and adult heritage speakers by focusing on oral production of Differential Object Marking (DOM), the overt morphological marking of animate direct objects in Spanish. In study 1, 39 school-age bilingual children (ages 6-17) from the…
Aparicio, Frances R.
Problems are discussed and recommendations made for developing programs and materials for Spanish instruction of Spanish speakers. General and specific suggestions are made for material selection and class activities, including spelling, composition, self-editing, dialog writing, transcription, translation, student-teacher conferences, journals,…
Blanco, George M.
This guide provides Texas teachers and administrators with guidelines, goals, instructional strategies, and activities for teaching Spanish to secondary level native speakers. It is based on the principle that the Spanish speaking student is the strongest linguistic and cultural resource to Texas teachers of languages other than English, and one…
Jaber, Maysa; Hussein, Riyad F.
This study is aimed at investigating the rating and intelligibility of different non-native varieties of English, namely French English, Japanese English and Jordanian English by native English speakers and their attitudes towards these foreign accents. To achieve the goals of this study, the researchers used a web-based questionnaire which…
Sobel, David M.; Macris, Deanna M.
Many studies suggest that preschoolers rely on individuals' histories of generating accurate lexical information when learning novel lexical information from them. The present study examined whether children used a speaker's accuracy about one kind of linguistic knowledge to make inferences about another kind of linguistic knowledge, focusing…
Pascual Cabo, Diego
This study contributes to current trends of heritage speaker (HS) acquisition research by examining the syntax of psych-predicates in HS Spanish. Broadly defined, psych-predicates communicate states of emotions (e.g., to love) and have traditionally been categorized as belonging to one of three classes: class I--"temere" "to…
Kohn, Mary Elizabeth; Farrington, Charlie
Speaker vowel formant normalization, a technique that controls for variation introduced by physical differences between speakers, is necessary in variationist studies to compare speakers of different ages, genders, and physiological makeup in order to understand non-physiological variation patterns within populations. Many algorithms have been established to reduce variation introduced into vocalic data from physiological sources. The lack of real-time studies tracking the effectiveness of these normalization algorithms from childhood through adolescence inhibits exploration of child participation in vowel shifts. This analysis compares normalization techniques applied to data collected from ten African American children across five time points. Linear regressions compare the reduction in variation attributable to age and gender for each speaker for the vowels BEET, BAT, BOT, BUT, and BOAR. A normalization technique is successful if it maintains variation attributable to a reference sociolinguistic variable, while reducing variation attributable to age. Results indicate that normalization techniques which rely on both a measure of central tendency and range of the vowel space perform best at reducing variation attributable to age, although some variation attributable to age persists after normalization for some sections of the vowel space.
Paul, Rhea; Bianchi, Nancy; Augustyn, Amy; Klin, Ami; Volkmar, Fred R.
This paper reports a study of the ability to reproduce stress in a nonsense syllable imitation task by adolescent speakers with autism spectrum disorders (ASD), as compared to typically developing (TD) age-mates. Results are reported for both raters' judgments of the subjects' stress production, as well as acoustic measures of pitch range and…
Explores the potential of the use of voice-recognition technology with second-language speakers of English. Involves the analysis of the output produced by a small group of very competent second-language subjects reading a text into the voice recognition software Dragon Systems "Dragon NaturallySpeaking." (Author/VWL)
Writing teachers need to recognize the special circumstances of culturally displaced students. A specific category of such students are those from the Asian subcontinent, who are not exactly non-native speakers of English, but who do speak non-standard American English. These students occupy a subaltern (marginal) position: they can neither be…
Mirkovic, Bojana; Bleichner, Martin G.; De Vos, Maarten; Debener, Stefan
Target speaker identification is essential for speech enhancement algorithms in assistive devices aimed toward helping the hearing impaired. Several recent studies have reported that target speaker identification is possible through electroencephalography (EEG) recordings. If the EEG system could be reduced to acceptable size while retaining the signal quality, hearing aids could benefit from the integration with concealed EEG. To compare the performance of a multichannel around-the-ear EEG system with high-density cap EEG recordings an envelope tracking algorithm was applied in a competitive speaker paradigm. The data from 20 normal hearing listeners were concurrently collected from the traditional state-of-the-art laboratory wired EEG system and a wireless mobile EEG system with two bilaterally-placed around-the-ear electrode arrays (cEEGrids). The results show that the cEEGrid ear-EEG technology captured neural signals that allowed the identification of the attended speaker above chance-level, with 69.3% accuracy, while cap-EEG signals resulted in the accuracy of 84.8%. Further analyses investigated the influence of ear-EEG signal quality and revealed that the envelope tracking procedure was unaffected by variability in channel impedances. We conclude that the quality of concealed ear-EEG recordings as acquired with the cEEGrid array has potential to be used in the brain-computer interface steering of hearing aids. PMID:27512364
Senay, Ibrahim; Keysar, Boaz
A long and narrow piece of wood is "a bat," "a stick," "a club," or "firewood." In fact, anything can be described from multiple perspectives, each suggesting a different conceptualization. People keep track of how speakers conceptualize things and expect them to describe them similarly in the future. This article demonstrates that these…
Salmelin, R; Schnitzler, A; Schmitz, F; Freund, H J
Ten fluent speakers and nine developmental stutterers read isolated nouns aloud in a delayed reading paradigm. Cortical activation sequences were mapped with a whole-head magnetoencephalography system. The stutterers were mostly fluent in this task. Although the overt performance was essentially identical in the two groups, the cortical activation patterns showed clear differences, both in the evoked responses, time-locked to word presentation and mouth movement onset, and in task-related suppression of 20-Hz oscillations. Within the first 400 ms after seeing the word, processing in fluent speakers advanced from the left inferior frontal cortex (articulatory programming) to the left lateral central sulcus and dorsal premotor cortex (motor preparation). This sequence was reversed in the stutterers, who showed an early left motor cortex activation followed by a delayed left inferior frontal signal. Stutterers thus appeared to initiate motor programmes before preparation of the articulatory code. During speech production, the right motor/premotor cortex generated consistent evoked activation in fluent speakers but was silent in stutterers. On the other hand, suppression of motor cortical 20-Hz rhythm, reflecting task-related neuronal processing, occurred bilaterally in both groups. Moreover, the suppression was right-hemisphere dominant in stutterers, as opposed to left-hemisphere dominant in fluent speakers. Accordingly, the right frontal cortex of stutterers was highly active during speech production but did not generate synchronous time-locked responses. The speech-related 20-Hz suppression concentrated in the mouth area in fluent speakers, but was evident in both the hand and mouth areas in stutterers. These findings may reflect imprecise functional connectivity within the right frontal cortex and incomplete segregation between the adjacent hand and mouth motor representations in stutterers during speech production. A network including the left inferior frontal
This study investigated the acoustic basis of across-utterance, within-speaker variation in speech naturalness for four speakers with dysarthria secondary to Parkinson's disease (PD). Speakers read sentences and produced spontaneous speech. Acoustic measures of fundamental frequency, phrase-final syllable lengthening, intensity and speech rate were obtained. A group of listeners judged speech naturalness using a nine-point Likert scale. Relationships between judgements of speech naturalness and acoustic measures were determined for individual speakers with PD. Relationships among acoustic measures also were quantified. Despite variability between speakers, measures of mean F0, intensity range, articulation rate, average syllable duration, duration of final syllables, vocalic nucleus length of final unstressed syllables and pitch accent of final syllables emerged as possible acoustic variables contributing to within-speaker variations in speech naturalness. Results suggest that acoustic measures correlate with speech naturalness, but in dysarthric speech they depend on the speaker due to the within-speaker variation in speech impairment.
Leemann, Adrian; Kolly, Marie-José; Dellwo, Volker
Everyday experience tells us that it is often possible to identify a familiar speaker solely by his/her voice. Such observations reveal that speakers carry individual features in their voices. The present study examines how suprasegmental temporal features contribute to speaker-individuality. Based on data of a homogeneous group of Zurich German speakers, we conducted an experiment that included speaking style variability (spontaneous vs. read speech) and channel variability (high-quality vs. mobile phone-transmitted speech), both of which are characteristic of forensic casework. Speakers demonstrated high between-speaker variability in both read and spontaneous speech, and low within-speaker variability across the two speaking styles. Results further revealed that distortions of the type introduced by mobile telephony had little effect on suprasegmental temporal characteristics. Given this evidence of speaker-individuality, we discuss suprasegmental temporal features' potential for forensic voice comparison.
This paper explores the apparent contradiction between the valuing and promoting of diverse literacies in most UK HEIs, and the discursive construction of spoken native-speaker English as the medium of good grades and prestige academic knowledge. During group interviews on their experiences of university internationalisation, 38 undergraduate…
Stricker, L. J.
The purpose of this study was to replicate previous research on the construct validity of the paper-based version of the TOEFL and extend it to the computer-based TOEFL. Two samples of Graduate Record Examination (GRE) General Test-takers were used: native speakers of English specially recruited to take the computer-based TOEFL, and ESL…
The German /r/ sound is one of the most difficult sounds for American English (AE) speakers who are learning German as a foreign language to produce. The standard German /r/ variant [/R/] and dialectal variant [R] are achieved by varying the tongue constriction degree, while keeping the place of articulation constant [Schiller and Mooshammer…
Bellandese, Mary H.
The purpose of this study was to determine if there was a relationship between fundamental frequency (Fo) and gender identification in standard esophageal (ES) or tracheoesophageal (TE) speakers. Twenty-three male and 20 female ES and TE speakers participated in this study. Recordings of these speakers reading the Rainbow Passage were played to 48…
Zhang, Xujin; Samuel, Arthur G.; Liu, Siyun
Previous research has found that a speaker's native phonological system has a great influence on perception of another language. In three experiments, we tested the perception and representation of Mandarin phonological contrasts by Guangzhou Cantonese speakers, and compared their performance to that of native Mandarin speakers. Despite their rich…
Gorman, Kristen S.; Gegg-Harrison, Whitney; Marsh, Chelsea R.; Tanenhaus, Michael K.
When referring to named objects, speakers can choose either a name ("mbira") or a description ("that gourd-like instrument with metal strips"); whether the name provides useful information depends on whether the speaker's knowledge of the name is shared with the addressee. But, how do speakers determine what is shared? In 2…
Gilbert, Harvey R.; Ferrand, Carole T.
Respirometric quotients (RQ), the ratio of oral air volume expended to total volume expended, were obtained from the productions of oral and nasal airflow of 10 speakers with cleft palate, with and without their prosthetic appliances, and 10 normal speakers. Cleft palate speakers without their appliances exhibited the lowest RQ values. (Author/DB)
Montrul, Silvina; Davidson, Justin; De La Fuente, Israel; Foote, Rebecca
We examined how age of acquisition in Spanish heritage speakers and L2 learners interacts with implicitness vs. explicitness of tasks in gender processing of canonical and non-canonical ending nouns. Twenty-three Spanish native speakers, 29 heritage speakers, and 33 proficiency-matched L2 learners completed three on-line spoken word recognition…
Anderson-Hsieh, Janet; Koehler, Kenneth
A study investigated the effect of foreign accent and speaking rate on native English speaker comprehension. Three native Chinese speakers and one native speaker of American English read passages at different speaking rates. Comprehension scores showed that an increase in speaking rate and heavily accented English decreased listener comprehension.…
Doerr, Neriko Musha; Kumagai, Yuri
"Heritage language speaker" is a relatively new term to denote minority language speakers who grew up in a household where the language was used or those who have a family, ancestral, or racial connection to the minority language. In research on heritage language speakers, overlap between these 2 definitions is often assumed--that is,…
Andreou, Georgia; Karapetsas, Anargyros; Galantomos, Ioannis
This study investigated the performance of native and non native speakers of Modern Greek language on morphology and syntax tasks. Non-native speakers of Greek whose native language was English, which is a language with strict word order and simple morphology, made more errors and answered more slowly than native speakers on morphology but not…
McGarr, Nancy S.; Raphael, Lawrence J.; Kolia, Betty; Vorperian, Houri K.; Harris, Katherine
Using electopalatography, this study investigated the production of sibilants produced by four adults who have severe-to-profound hearing loss and four speakers with normal hearing. Each speaker wore a Rion[R] semi-flexible electroplate while producing multiple repetitions of the utterances "see, sue, she, shoe." The speakers' productions were…
Finlayson, Ian R; Corley, Martin
Disfluency is a characteristic feature of spontaneous human speech, commonly seen as a consequence of problems with production. However, the question remains open as to why speakers are disfluent: Is it a mechanical by-product of planning difficulty, or do speakers use disfluency in dialogue to manage listeners' expectations? To address this question, we present two experiments investigating the production of disfluency in monologue and dialogue situations. Dialogue affected the linguistic choices made by participants, who aligned on referring expressions by choosing less frequent names for ambiguous images where those names had previously been mentioned. However, participants were no more disfluent in dialogue than in monologue situations, and the distribution of types of disfluency used remained constant. Our evidence rules out at least a straightforward interpretation of the view that disfluencies are an intentional signal in dialogue.
Mori, Hiroki; Ohshima, Koh
A framework for generating facial expressions from emotional states in daily conversation is described. It provides a mapping between emotional states and facial expressions, where the former is represented by vectors with psychologically-defined abstract dimensions, and the latter is coded by the Facial Action Coding System. In order to obtain the mapping, parallel data with rated emotional states and facial expressions were collected for utterances of a female speaker, and a neural network was trained with the data. The effectiveness of proposed method is verified by a subjective evaluation test. As the result, the Mean Opinion Score with respect to the suitability of generated facial expression was 3.86 for the speaker, which was close to that of hand-made facial expressions.
Ge, Zhenhao; Sharma, Sudhendu R.; Smith, Mark J. T.
Various algorithms for text-independent speaker recognition have been developed through the decades, aiming to improve both accuracy and efficiency. This paper presents a novel PCA/LDA-based approach that is faster than traditional statistical model-based methods and achieves competitive results. First, the performance based on only PCA and only LDA is measured; then a mixed model, taking advantages of both methods, is introduced. A subset of the TIMIT corpus composed of 200 male speakers, is used for enrollment, validation and testing. The best results achieve 100%, 96% and 95% classification rate at population level 50, 100 and 200, using 39- dimensional MFCC features with delta and double delta. These results are based on 12-second text-independent speech for training and 4-second data for test. These are comparable to the conventional MFCC-GMM methods, but require significantly less time to train and operate.
Weaver, H.J.; Burdick, R.B.
When dynamically testing delicate laser components (e.g. an elliptical glass laser disc) it is often impossible to provide a direct contact excitation source such as an impact hammer or shaker. This is because of the delicate and/or brittle nature of the material from which the components are constructed. The alternate approach that is often used in a test of this type is to excite the component with an acoustic speaker. In this paper we describe a small series of tests in which we compare the modal parameters obtained by using a speaker as an excitation source with those obtained on the same object when the excitation was provided by a shaker.
Guppies RL/IRAA 32 Hangar Rd Griffiss AFB NY 13441 11. SUPPLEMENTARY NOTES 12a. DISTRIBUTION/ AVAILABILITY STATEMENT 12b. DISTRIBUTION CODE Distribution...contains ten examples of each of the spoken digits ("zero" through "nine") for eight different speakers; four male and four female. The speech recordings...there were no overlapping windows. Once the feature vector was determined, the features were level normalized . This was achieved by subtracting each
Allen, Virginia French, Ed.
The contents of this volume, a compilation of papers read at the first conference of TESOL (Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages), are grouped according to general subject and authors: (1) TESOL as a Professional Field--A.H. Marckwardt, F.J. Colligan, W.F. Marquardt; (2) Reports on Special Programs--J.E. Officer, R.B. Long, M.C.…
Zhang, Caicai; Peng, Gang; Shao, Jing; Wang, William S-Y
Congenital amusia is a lifelong neurodevelopmental disorder of fine-grained pitch processing. In this fMRI study, we examined the neural bases of congenial amusia in speakers of a tonal language - Cantonese. Previous studies on non-tonal language speakers suggest that the neural deficits of congenital amusia lie in the music-selective neural circuitry in the right inferior frontal gyrus (IFG). However, it is unclear whether this finding can generalize to congenital amusics in tonal languages. Tonal language experience has been reported to shape the neural processing of pitch, which raises the question of how tonal language experience affects the neural bases of congenital amusia. To investigate this question, we examined the neural circuitries sub-serving the processing of relative pitch interval in pitch-matched Cantonese level tone and musical stimuli in 11 Cantonese-speaking amusics and 11 musically intact controls. Cantonese-speaking amusics exhibited abnormal brain activities in a widely distributed neural network during the processing of lexical tone and musical stimuli. Whereas the controls exhibited significant activation in the right superior temporal gyrus (STG) in the lexical tone condition and in the cerebellum regardless of the lexical tone and music conditions, no activation was found in the amusics in those regions, which likely reflects a dysfunctional neural mechanism of relative pitch processing in the amusics. Furthermore, the amusics showed abnormally strong activation of the right middle frontal gyrus and precuneus when the pitch stimuli were repeated, which presumably reflect deficits of attending to repeated pitch stimuli or encoding them into working memory. No significant group difference was found in the right IFG in either the whole-brain analysis or region-of-interest analysis. These findings imply that the neural deficits in tonal language speakers might differ from those in non-tonal language speakers, and overlap partly with the
Kreidler, Carol J., Ed.
The papers in this volume, read at the second national TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) conference, are grouped by general subject as follows: (1) TESOL as a Professional Field--C.H. Prator, J.M. Cowan, T.W. Russell, J.E. Alatis; (2) Reports on Special Programs--H. Thompson, A.D. Nance, D. Pantell, P. Rojas, R.F. Robinett,…
Ponari, Marta; Rodríguez-Cuadrado, Sara; Vinson, David; Fox, Neil; Costa, Albert; Vigliocco, Gabriella
Effects of emotion on word processing are well established in monolingual speakers. However, studies that have assessed whether affective features of words undergo the same processing in a native and nonnative language have provided mixed results: Studies that have found differences between native language (L1) and second language (L2) processing attributed the difference to the fact that L2 learned late in life would not be processed affectively, because affective associations are established during childhood. Other studies suggest that adult learners show similar effects of emotional features in L1 and L2. Differences in affective processing of L2 words can be linked to age and context of learning, proficiency, language dominance, and degree of similarity between L2 and L1. Here, in a lexical decision task on tightly matched negative, positive, and neutral words, highly proficient English speakers from typologically different L1s showed the same facilitation in processing emotionally valenced words as native English speakers, regardless of their L1, the age of English acquisition, or the frequency and context of English use.
Druks, Judit; Weekes, Brendan Stuart
The convergence hypothesis [Green, D. W. (2003). The neural basis of the lexicon and the grammar in L2 acquisition: The convergence hypothesis. In R. van Hout, A. Hulk, F. Kuiken, & R. Towell (Eds.), The interface between syntax and the lexicon in second language acquisition (pp. 197-218). Amsterdam: John Benjamins] assumes that the neural substrates of language representations are shared between the languages of a bilingual speaker. One prediction of this hypothesis is that neurodegenerative disease should produce parallel deterioration to lexical and grammatical processing in bilingual aphasia. We tested this prediction with a late bilingual Hungarian (first language, L1)-English (second language, L2) speaker J.B. who had nonfluent progressive aphasia (NFPA). J.B. had acquired L2 in adolescence but was premorbidly proficient and used English as his dominant language throughout adult life. Our investigations showed comparable deterioration to lexical and grammatical knowledge in both languages during a one-year period. Parallel deterioration to language processing in a bilingual speaker with NFPA challenges the assumption that L1 and L2 rely on different brain mechanisms as assumed in some theories of bilingual language processing [Ullman, M. T. (2001). The neural basis of lexicon and grammar in ﬁrst and second language: The declarative/procedural model. Bilingualism: Language and Cognition, 4(1), 105-122].
Feenaughty, Lynda; Tjaden, Kris; Sussman, Joan
This study investigated the acoustic basis of within-speaker, across-utterance variation in sentence intelligibility for 12 speakers with dysarthria secondary to Parkinson's disease (PD). Acoustic measures were also obtained for 12 healthy controls for comparison to speakers with PD. Speakers read sentences using their typical speech style. Acoustic measures of speech rate, articulatory rate, fundamental frequency, sound pressure level and F2 interquartile range (F2 IQR) were obtained. A group of listeners judged sentence intelligibility using a computerized visual-analog scale. Relationships between judgments of intelligibility and acoustic measures were determined for individual speakers with PD. Relationships among acoustic measures were also quantified. Although considerable variability was noted, articulatory rate, fundamental frequency and F2 IQR were most frequently associated with within-speaker variation in sentence intelligibility. Results suggest that diversity among speakers with PD should be considered when interpreting results from group analyses.
Mehri, Azar; Ghorbani, Askar; Darzi, Ali; Jalaie, Shohreh; Ashayeri, Hassan
Background: Cerebrovascular disease leading to stroke is the most common cause of aphasia. Speakers with agrammatic non-fluent aphasia have difficulties in production of movement-derived sentences such as passive sentences, topicalized constituents, and Wh-questions. To assess the production of complex sentences, some passive, topicalized and focused sentences were designed for patients with non-fluent Persian aphasic. Afterwards, patients’ performance in sentence production was tested and compared with healthy non-damaged subjects. Methods: In this cross sectional study, a task was designed to assess the different types of sentences (active, passive, topicalized and focused) adapted to Persian structures. Seven Persian patients with post-stroke non-fluent agrammatic aphasia (5 men and 2 women) and seven healthy non-damaged subjects participated in this study. The computed tomography (CT) scan or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) showed that all the patients had a single left hemisphere lesion involved middle cerebral artery (MCA), Broca`s area and in its white matter. In addition, based on Bedside version of Persian Western Aphasia Battery (P-WAB-1), all of them were diagnosed with moderate Broca aphasia. Then, the production task of Persian complex sentences was administered. Results: There was a significant difference between four types of sentences in patients with aphasia [Degree of freedom (df) = 3, P < 0.001]. All the patients showed worse performance than the healthy participants in all the four types of sentence production (P < 0.050). Conclusion: In general, it is concluded that topicalized and focused sentences as non-canonical complex sentences in Persian are very difficult to produce for patients with agrammatic non-fluent aphasia. It seems that sentences with A-movement are simpler for the patients than sentences involving A`-movement; since they include shorter movements in compare to topicalized and focused sentences. PMID:27141274
Kriengwatana, Buddhamas; Escudero, Paola; ten Cate, Carel
The extent to which human speech perception evolved by taking advantage of predispositions and pre-existing features of vertebrate auditory and cognitive systems remains a central question in the evolution of speech. This paper reviews asymmetries in vowel perception, speaker voice recognition, and speaker normalization in non-human animals – topics that have not been thoroughly discussed in relation to the abilities of non-human animals, but are nonetheless important aspects of vocal perception. Throughout this paper we demonstrate that addressing these issues in non-human animals is relevant and worthwhile because many non-human animals must deal with similar issues in their natural environment. That is, they must also discriminate between similar-sounding vocalizations, determine signaler identity from vocalizations, and resolve signaler-dependent variation in vocalizations from conspecifics. Overall, we find that, although plausible, the current evidence is insufficiently strong to conclude that directional asymmetries in vowel perception are specific to humans, or that non-human animals can use voice characteristics to recognize human individuals. However, we do find some indication that non-human animals can normalize speaker differences. Accordingly, we identify avenues for future research that would greatly improve and advance our understanding of these topics. PMID:25628583
According to general theories, neutral tone is not regarded as an independent tone in Mandarin. Previous research shows that the most important characteristic of the neutral tone is that it does not have a certain target and pitch contour. (Lin and Yang, 1980) Namely, its pitch contour is uncertain, and it is weak in perception level. However, those studies ignore the variant between different dialects. Our study examined the features of the neutral tone between two dialects of Mandarin speakers and aimed at figuring out the dialect difference effect on the pronunciation of the neutral tone. Our subjects were chosen form two groups of Mandarin speakers. One group is from the North Mainland China, and the other is from Taiwan. The experiment was designed with a speak-it-out process. All subjects read a randomized script written in Mandarin, and the whole process was recorded spontaneously. The preliminary result shows that the dialect difference effect actually matters. It shows a tendency that the neutral tone has a certain target in Taiwan Mandarin speakers.
McKain, Danielle R.
The term real world is often used in mathematics education, yet the definition of real-world problems and how to incorporate them in the classroom remains ambiguous. One way real-world connections can be made is through guest speakers. Guest speakers can offer different perspectives and share knowledge about various subject areas, yet the impact…
Jacobson, Rodolfo, Ed.
Suggesting that America should strive for linguistic and cultural pluralism, this special issue gathers in one place the latest thoughts of scholars on topics related to the concept of cultural pluralism, i.e., English to speakers of other languages (ESOL) and standard English to speakers of a nonstandard dialect (SESOD). Kenneth Croft, James Ney,…
Bressmann, Tim; Flowers, Heather; Wong, Willy; Irish, Jonathan C.
The goal of this study was to quantitatively describe aspects of coronal tongue movement in different anatomical regions of the tongue. Four normal speakers and a speaker with partial glossectomy read four repetitions of a metronome-paced poem. Their tongue movement was recorded in four coronal planes using two-dimensional B-mode ultrasound…
Ellis, Elizabeth M.
Teacher linguistic identity has so far mainly been researched in terms of whether a teacher identifies (or is identified by others) as a native speaker (NEST) or nonnative speaker (NNEST) (Moussu & Llurda, 2008; Reis, 2011). Native speakers are presumed to be monolingual, and nonnative speakers, although by definition bilingual, tend to be…
Non-native speakers of English often experience problems in pronunciation as they are learning English, many such problems persisting even when the speaker has achieved a high degree of fluency. Research has shown that for a non-native speaker to sound most natural and intelligible in his or her second language, the speaker must acquire proper…
Ames, Heather; Grossberg, Stephen
Auditory signals of speech are speaker dependent, but representations of language meaning are speaker independent. The transformation from speaker-dependent to speaker-independent language representations enables speech to be learned and understood from different speakers. A neural model is presented that performs speaker normalization to generate a pitch-independent representation of speech sounds, while also preserving information about speaker identity. This speaker-invariant representation is categorized into unitized speech items, which input to sequential working memories whose distributed patterns can be categorized, or chunked, into syllable and word representations. The proposed model fits into an emerging model of auditory streaming and speech categorization. The auditory streaming and speaker normalization parts of the model both use multiple strip representations and asymmetric competitive circuits, thereby suggesting that these two circuits arose from similar neural designs. The normalized speech items are rapidly categorized and stably remembered by adaptive resonance theory circuits. Simulations use synthesized steady-state vowels from the Peterson and Barney [Peterson, G. E., and Barney, H.L., J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 24, 175-184 (1952).] vowel database and achieve accuracy rates similar to those achieved by human listeners. These results are compared to behavioral data and other speaker normalization models.
Suh, Jun-Won; Hansen, John H L
In this study, the problem of sparse enrollment data for in-set versus out-of-set speaker recognition is addressed. The challenge here is that both the training speaker data (5 s) and test material (2~6 s) is of limited test duration. The limited enrollment data result in a sparse acoustic model space for the desired speaker model. The focus of this study is on filling these acoustic holes by harvesting neighbor speaker information to leverage overall system performance. Acoustically similar speakers are selected from a separate available corpus via three different methods for speaker similarity measurement. The selected data from these similar acoustic speakers are exploited to fill the lack of phone coverage caused by the original sparse enrollment data. The proposed speaker modeling process mimics the naturally distributed acoustic space for conversational speech. The Gaussian mixture model (GMM) tagging process allows simulated natural conversation speech to be included for in-set speaker modeling, which maintains the original system requirement of text independent speaker recognition. A human listener evaluation is also performed to compare machine versus human speaker recognition performance, with machine performance of 95% compared to 72.2% accuracy for human in-set/out-of-set performance. Results show that for extreme sparse train/reference audio streams, human speaker recognition is not nearly as reliable as machine based speaker recognition. The proposed acoustic hole filling solution (MRNC) produces an averaging 7.42% relative improvement over a GMM-Cohort UBM baseline and a 19% relative improvement over the Eigenvoice baseline using the FISHER corpus.
This study aims at investigating the production of the Greek modal and negative particles by non-fluent aphasic patients. These particles belong to the highest part of the verb periphrasis, so they are likely to be impaired in non-fluent aphasia, according to some hypotheses about agrammatic language. Moreover, there is an agreement relation between modality and negation, allowing the examination of agreement relationships in the clause domain. The data are compared to the predictions of recent theories on agrammatic language. The data provide evidence that modality is impaired in agrammatic aphasia, whilst agreement relations between clausal elements are spared.
Dalton, H.; Shupla, C. B.; Buxner, S.; Shipp, S. S.
Join the new NASA SMD Scientist Speaker's Bureau, an online portal to connect scientists interested in getting involved in E/PO projects (e.g., giving public talks, classroom visits, and virtual connections) with audiences! The Scientist Speaker's Bureau helps educators and institutions connect with NASA scientists who are interested in giving presentations, based upon the topic, logistics, and audience. Aside from name, organization, location, bio, and (optional) photo and website, the information that scientists enter into this database will not be made public; instead, it will be used to help match scientists with the requests being placed. One of the most common ways for scientists to interact with students, adults, and general public audiences is to give presentations about or related to their science. However, most educators do not have a simple way to connect with those planetary scientists, Earth scientists, heliophysicists, and astronomers who are interested and available to speak with their audiences. This system is designed to help meet the need for connecting potential audiences to interested scientists. The information input into the database (availability to travel, willingness to present online or in person, interest in presenting to different age groups and sizes of audience, topics, and more) will be used to help match scientists (you!) with the requests being placed by educators. All NASA-funded Earth and space scientists engaged in active research are invited to fill out the short registration form, including those who are involved in missions, institutes, grants, and those who are using NASA science data in their research, and more. There is particular need for young scientists, such as graduate students and post-doctoral researchers, and women and people of diverse backgrounds. Submit your information at http://www.lpi.usra.edu/education/speaker.
Ng, L C; Gable, T J; Holzrichter, J F
Low Power EM radar-like sensors have made it possible to measure properties of the human speech production system in real-time, without acoustic interference. This greatly enhances the quality and quantity of information for many speech related applications. See Holzrichter, Burnett, Ng, and Lea, J. Acoustic. SOC. Am . 103 ( 1) 622 (1998). By combining the Glottal-EM-Sensor (GEMS) with the Acoustic-signals, we've demonstrated an almost 10 fold reduction in error rates from a speaker verification system experiment under a moderate noisy environment (-10dB).
Kreimeyer, Roman; Ludwig, Stefan
We present an automatic acoustic classifier for marine mammals based on human speaker classification methods as an element of a passive acoustic monitoring (PAM) tool. This work is part of the Protection of Marine Mammals (PoMM) project under the framework of the European Defense Agency (EDA) and joined by the Research Department for Underwater Acoustics and Geophysics (FWG), Bundeswehr Technical Centre (WTD 71) and Kiel University. The automatic classification should support sonar operators in the risk mitigation process before and during sonar exercises with a reliable automatic classification result.
Lansford, Kaitlin L; Berisha, Visar; Utianski, Rene L
The current investigation contributes to a perceptual similarity-based approach to dysarthria characterization by utilizing an innovative statistical approach, multinomial logistic regression with sparsity constraints, to identify acoustic features underlying each listener's impressions of speaker similarity. The data-driven approach also permitted an examination of the effect of clinical experience on listeners' impressions of similarity. Listeners, irrespective of level of clinical experience, were found to rely on similar acoustic features during the perceptual sorting task, known as free classification. Overall, the results support the continued advancement of a similarity-based approach to characterizing the communication disorders associated with dysarthria.
Schweppe, Judith; Barth, Sandra; Ketzer-Nöltge, Almut; Rummer, Ralf
Verbatim sentence recall is widely used to test the language competence of native and non-native speakers since it involves comprehension and production of connected speech. However, we assume that, to maintain surface information, sentence recall relies particularly on attentional resources, which differentially affects native and non-native speakers. Since even in near-natives language processing is less automatized than in native speakers, processing a sentence in a foreign language plus retaining its surface may result in a cognitive overload. We contrasted sentence recall performance of German native speakers with that of highly proficient non-natives. Non-natives recalled the sentences significantly poorer than the natives, but performed equally well on a cloze test. This implies that sentence recall underestimates the language competence of good non-native speakers in mixed groups with native speakers. The findings also suggest that theories of sentence recall need to consider both its linguistic and its attentional aspects. PMID:25698996
Schweppe, Judith; Barth, Sandra; Ketzer-Nöltge, Almut; Rummer, Ralf
Verbatim sentence recall is widely used to test the language competence of native and non-native speakers since it involves comprehension and production of connected speech. However, we assume that, to maintain surface information, sentence recall relies particularly on attentional resources, which differentially affects native and non-native speakers. Since even in near-natives language processing is less automatized than in native speakers, processing a sentence in a foreign language plus retaining its surface may result in a cognitive overload. We contrasted sentence recall performance of German native speakers with that of highly proficient non-natives. Non-natives recalled the sentences significantly poorer than the natives, but performed equally well on a cloze test. This implies that sentence recall underestimates the language competence of good non-native speakers in mixed groups with native speakers. The findings also suggest that theories of sentence recall need to consider both its linguistic and its attentional aspects.
Honda, Hidehito; Yamagishi, Kimihiko
Verbal probabilities have directional communicative functions, and most can be categorized as positive (e.g., "it is likely") or negative (e.g., "it is doubtful"). We examined the communicative functions of verbal probabilities based on the reference point hypothesis According to this hypothesis, listeners are sensitive to and can infer a speaker's reference points based on the speaker's selected directionality. In four experiments (two of which examined speakers' choice of directionality and two of which examined listeners' inferences about a speaker's reference point), we found that listeners could make inferences about speakers' reference points based on the stated directionality of verbal probability. Thus, the directionality of verbal probabilities serves the communicative function of conveying information about a speaker's reference point.
Akanuma, Kyoko; Meguro, Kenichi; Satoh, Masayuki; Tashiro, Manabu; Itoh, Masatoshi
Clinically, we know that some aphasic patients can sing well despite their speech disturbances. Herein, we report 10 patients with non-fluent aphasia, of which half of the patients improved their speech function after singing training. We studied ten patients with non-fluent aphasia complaining of difficulty finding words. All had lesions in the left basal ganglia or temporal lobe. They selected the melodies they knew well, but which they could not sing. We made a new lyric with a familiar melody using words they could not name. The singing training using these new lyrics was performed for 30 minutes once a week for 10 weeks. Before and after the training, their speech functions were assessed by language tests. At baseline, 6 of them received positron emission tomography to evaluate glucose metabolism. Five patients exhibited improvements after intervention; all but one exhibited intact right basal ganglia and left temporal lobes, but all exhibited left basal ganglia lesions. Among them, three subjects exhibited preserved glucose metabolism in the right temporal lobe. We considered that patients who exhibit intact right basal ganglia and left temporal lobes, together with preserved right hemispheric glucose metabolism, might be an indication of the effectiveness of singing therapy.
Bozavli, Ebubekir; Gulmez, Recep
The aim of this study is to reveal the effect of FLA (foreign language anxiety) in native/non-native speaker of English classrooms. In this study, two groups of students (90 in total) of whom 38 were in NS (native speaker) class and 52 in NNS (non-native speaker) class taking English as a second language course for 22 hours a week at Erzincan…
Kriengwatana, Buddhamas; Escudero, Paola; Kerkhoven, Anne H.; Cate, Carel ten
Different speakers produce the same speech sound differently, yet listeners are still able to reliably identify the speech sound. How listeners can adjust their perception to compensate for speaker differences in speech, and whether these compensatory processes are unique only to humans, is still not fully understood. In this study we compare the ability of humans and zebra finches to categorize vowels despite speaker variation in speech in order to test the hypothesis that accommodating speaker and gender differences in isolated vowels can be achieved without prior experience with speaker-related variability. Using a behavioral Go/No-go task and identical stimuli, we compared Australian English adults’ (naïve to Dutch) and zebra finches’ (naïve to human speech) ability to categorize / I/ and /ε/ vowels of an novel Dutch speaker after learning to discriminate those vowels from only one other speaker. Experiments 1 and 2 presented vowels of two speakers interspersed or blocked, respectively. Results demonstrate that categorization of vowels is possible without prior exposure to speaker-related variability in speech for zebra finches, and in non-native vowel categories for humans. Therefore, this study is the first to provide evidence for what might be a species-shared auditory bias that may supersede speaker-related information during vowel categorization. It additionally provides behavioral evidence contradicting a prior hypothesis that accommodation of speaker differences is achieved via the use of formant ratios. Therefore, investigations of alternative accounts of vowel normalization that incorporate the possibility of an auditory bias for disregarding inter-speaker variability are warranted. PMID:26379579
Casas, Rachel; Guzmán-Vélez, Edmarie; Cardona-Rodriguez, Javier; Rodriguez, Nayra; Quiñones, Gabriela; Izaguirre, Borja; Tranel, Daniel
The primary objective of this study was to investigate empirically whether using an interpreter to conduct neuropsychological testing of monolingual Spanish speakers affects test scores. Participants included 40 neurologically normal Spanish speakers with limited English proficiency, aged 18-65 years (M = 39.7, SD = 13.9), who completed the Vocabulary, Similarities, Block Design, and Matrix Reasoning subtests of the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale-III in two counterbalanced conditions: with and without an interpreter. Results indicated that interpreter use significantly increased scores on Vocabulary and Similarities. However, scores on Block Design and Matrix Reasoning did not differ depending on whether or not an interpreter was used. In addition the findings suggested a trend toward higher variability in scores when an interpreter was used to administer Vocabulary and Similarities; this trend did not show up for Block Design or Matrix Reasoning. Together the results indicate that interpreter use may significantly affect scores for some tests commonly used in neuropsychological practice, with this influence being greater for verbally mediated tests. Additional research is needed to identify the types of tests that may be most affected as well as the factors that contribute to the effects. In the meantime neuropsychologists are encouraged to avoid interpreter use whenever practically possible, particularly for tests with high demands on interpreter abilities and skills, with tests that have not been appropriately adapted and translated into the patient's target language, and with interpreters who are not trained professionals.
Hoffman, Michael; Mittelman, Moshe
Professional meetings are an important way of educating, communicating and sharing updated information. After having attended dozens of medical and scientific meetings and conferences, the authors realized that many lectures are not appropriately presented due to a lack of proper speaking skills or inadequate facilities. Although the art of speaking is, to some degree, an inborn talent, speaking skills can be learned, exercised and put into practice. The current article summarizes the authors' thoughts and opinions about what makes a medical or scientific lecture a good or bad one, and it provides suggestions for improving a speaker's performance. Common mistakes are discussed, along with tips and recommendations on how to prepare and provide an interesting, professional, entertaining and attractive lecture. Guidelines are given on how to structure and balance a lecture. A special segment is devoted to speaker-audience relations. A detailed chapter emphasizes rules for preparing good slides. Finally, some recommendations are made regarding facilities in the lecture hall. The authors believe that if the proposed suggestions were applied, more presentations would be successful.
Mencke, E O; Ochsner, G J; Testut, E W
Speech samples (41 CNC monosyllables) of 22 deaf children were analyzed using two distinctive-feature systems, one acoustic and one physiologic. Moderate to high correlations between intelligibility scores by listener judges vs correct feature usage were obtained for positive as well as negative features of both systems. Further, higher correlations between percent-correct feature usage scores vs listener intelligibility scores were observed for phonemes in the initial vs final position-in-work regardless of listener-judge experience, feature system, or presentation mode. These findings suggest that either acoustic or physiologic feature analysis can be employed in describing the articulation of deaf talkers. In general, either of these feature systems also predicts with fair to good accuracy the intelligibility of deaf speakers as judged by either experienced or inexperienced listeners. In view of the appreciably higher correlations obtained between feature use and intelligibility scores in initial compared to final position-in-word, however, caution should be exercised with either of the feature systems studied in predicting the intelligibility of a deaf speaker's final phoneme.
Knowles, Kristen K; Little, Anthony C
In recent years, the perception of social traits in faces and voices has received much attention. Facial and vocal masculinity are linked to perceptions of trustworthiness; however, while feminine faces are generally considered to be trustworthy, vocal trustworthiness is associated with masculinized vocal features. Vocal traits such as pitch and formants have previously been associated with perceived social traits such as trustworthiness and dominance, but the link between these measurements and perceptions of cooperativeness have yet to be examined. In Experiment 1, cooperativeness ratings of male and female voices were examined against four vocal measurements: fundamental frequency (F0), pitch variation (F0-SD), formant dispersion (Df), and formant position (Pf). Feminine pitch traits (F0 and F0-SD) and masculine formant traits (Df and Pf) were associated with higher cooperativeness ratings. In Experiment 2, manipulated voices with feminized F0 were found to be more cooperative than voices with masculinized F0(,) among both male and female speakers, confirming our results from Experiment 1. Feminine pitch qualities may indicate an individual who is friendly and non-threatening, while masculine formant qualities may reflect an individual that is socially dominant or prestigious, and the perception of these associated traits may influence the perceived cooperativeness of the speakers.
Casserly, Elizabeth D
Feedback perturbation studies of speech acoustics have revealed a great deal about how speakers monitor and control their productions of segmental (e.g., formant frequencies) and non-segmental (e.g., pitch) linguistic elements. The majority of previous work, however, overlooks the role of acoustic feedback in consonant production and makes use of acoustic manipulations that effect either entire utterances or the entire acoustic signal, rather than more temporally and phonetically restricted alterations. This study, therefore, seeks to expand the feedback perturbation literature by examining perturbation of consonant acoustics that is applied in a time-restricted and phonetically specific manner. The spectral center of the alveopalatal fricative [∫] produced in vowel-fricative-vowel nonwords was incrementally raised until it reached the potential for [s]-like frequencies, but the characteristics of high-frequency energy outside the target fricative remained unaltered. An "offline," more widely accessible signal processing method was developed to perform this manipulation. The local feedback perturbation resulted in changes to speakers' fricative production that were more variable, idiosyncratic, and restricted than the compensation seen in more global acoustic manipulations reported in the literature. Implications and interpretations of the results, as well as future directions for research based on the findings, are discussed.
Chang, Charles B; Yao, Yao; Haynes, Erin F; Rhodes, Russell
This study tested the hypothesis that heritage speakers of a minority language, due to their childhood experience with two languages, would outperform late learners in producing contrast: language-internal phonological contrast, as well as cross-linguistic phonetic contrast between similar, yet acoustically distinct, categories of different languages. To this end, production of Mandarin and English by heritage speakers of Mandarin was compared to that of native Mandarin speakers and native American English-speaking late learners of Mandarin in three experiments. In experiment 1, back vowels in Mandarin and English were produced distinctly by all groups, but the greatest separation between similar vowels was achieved by heritage speakers. In experiment 2, Mandarin aspirated and English voiceless plosives were produced distinctly by native Mandarin speakers and heritage speakers, who both put more distance between them than late learners. In experiment 3, the Mandarin retroflex and English palato-alveolar fricatives were distinguished by more heritage speakers and late learners than native Mandarin speakers. Thus, overall the hypothesis was supported: across experiments, heritage speakers were found to be the most successful at simultaneously maintaining language-internal and cross-linguistic contrasts, a result that may stem from a close approximation of phonetic norms that occurs during early exposure to both languages.
Suh, Youngjoo; Kim, Hoirin
Support vector machines (SVMs) have been proved to be an effective approach to speaker verification. An appropriate selection of the kernel function is a key issue in SVM-based classification. In this letter, a new SVM-based speaker verification method utilizing weighted kernels in the Gaussian mixture model supervector space is proposed. The weighted kernels are derived by using the discriminative training approach, which minimizes speaker verification errors. Experiments performed on the NIST 2008 speaker recognition evaluation task showed that the proposed approach provides substantially improved performance over the baseline kernel-based method.
Bortz, M A
The receptive, expressive and pragmatic language abilities of 18-month-old Zulu speakers were assessed in order to obtain preliminary norms. Twenty-five participants of the Birth to Ten cohort study were investigated using parent reports, mother-child and tester-child interactions. Data was transcribed and analysed using nonparametric statistics. Results demonstrated that receptively subjects understood two-part instructions. Expressively, the mean lexicon was 4.12 words and mean length of utterance 0.65. Pragmatically, subjects were functioning on a nonverbal level and exhibited culture-specific items. The results provided information which could enable speech, language and hearing therapists to engage in primary and secondary prevention. An appropriate test battery for these children is discussed.
Soltani, Majid; Ashayeri, Hasan; Modarresi, Yahya; Salavati, Mahyar; Ghomashchi, Hamed
This study was designed to investigate changes in fundamental frequency (F0) across the life span in Persian speakers. Four hundred children and adults were asked to produce a sustained phonation of vowel /a/ and their voice samples were studied in 10 age groups. F0 was analyzed using the software Praat (Version 5.1.17.). The results revealed that (1) the mean F0 in both sexes decreases from childhood to adulthood; (2) significant F0 differences between boys and girls begin at the age of 12 years; and (3) the range of F0 changes in the life span is greater in men (178.38 Hz) than in women (113.57 Hz). These findings provide new data for Persian-speaking children, women, and men and could be beneficial for Iranian speech and language pathologists.
Recent studies of heritage speakers, many of whom possess incomplete knowledge of their family language, suggest that these speakers may be linguistically superior to second language (L2) learners only in phonology but not in morphosyntax. This study reexamines this claim by focusing on knowledge of clitic pronouns and word order in 24 L2 learners…
Wolfe, Joanna; Shanmugaraj, Nisha; Sipe, Jaclyn
Many communication instructors make allowances for grammatical error in nonnative English speakers' writing, but do businesspeople do the same? We asked 169 businesspeople to comment on three versions of an email with different types of errors. We found that businesspeople do make allowances for errors made by nonnative English speakers,…
Nan, Yun; Sun, Yanan; Peretz, Isabelle
Congenital amusia is a neurogenetic disorder that affects the processing of musical pitch in speakers of non-tonal languages like English and French. We assessed whether this musical disorder exists among speakers of Mandarin Chinese who use pitch to alter the meaning of words. Using the Montreal Battery of Evaluation of Amusia, we tested 117…
Wiener, William R.; Ponchillia, Paul; Joffee, Elga; Rutberg-Kuskin, Judith; Brown, John
Two studies examined the effectiveness of external-speaker announcements in identifying incoming buses to 21 adults with visual impairments, including the placement of external speakers, the ability to understand simultaneous bus announcements, and the speech enhancement of announcements. Announcements could be heard above ambient traffic sounds…
Griffin, Zenzi M.; Oppenheimer, Daniel M.
When describing scenes, speakers gaze at objects while preparing their names (Z. M. Griffin & K. Bock, 2000). In this study, the authors investigated whether gazes to referents occurred in the absence of a correspondence between visual features and word meaning. Speakers gazed significantly longer at objects before intentionally labeling them…
Albirini, Abdulkafi; Benmamoun, Elabbas
This study compares Arabic L1, L2, and heritage speakers' (HS) knowledge of plural formation, which involves concatenative and nonconcatenative modes of derivation. Ninety participants (divided equally among L1, L2, and heritage speakers) completed two oral tasks: a picture naming task (to measure proficiency) and a plural formation task. The…
The focus of this paper is on speakers' rationalisations of their everyday linguistic choices as members of a multilingual academic department in the US. Given the monolingual macro-context, the myriad of native languages spoken by participants, and the professional stake in language competence, the question of how speakers arrive at language…
Sulpizio, Simone; Fasoli, Fabio; Maass, Anne; Paladino, Maria Paola; Vespignani, Francesco; Eyssel, Friederike; Bentler, Dominik
Empirical research had initially shown that English listeners are able to identify the speakers' sexual orientation based on voice cues alone. However, the accuracy of this voice-based categorization, as well as its generalizability to other languages (language-dependency) and to non-native speakers (language-specificity), has been questioned recently. Consequently, we address these open issues in 5 experiments: First, we tested whether Italian and German listeners are able to correctly identify sexual orientation of same-language male speakers. Then, participants of both nationalities listened to voice samples and rated the sexual orientation of both Italian and German male speakers. We found that listeners were unable to identify the speakers' sexual orientation correctly. However, speakers were consistently categorized as either heterosexual or gay on the basis of how they sounded. Moreover, a similar pattern of results emerged when listeners judged the sexual orientation of speakers of their own and of the foreign language. Overall, this research suggests that voice-based categorization of sexual orientation reflects the listeners' expectations of how gay voices sound rather than being an accurate detector of the speakers' actual sexual identity. Results are discussed with regard to accuracy, acoustic features of voices, language dependency and language specificity.
This study was a cross-sectional investigation into the request strategies used by Iranian learners of English as a Foreign Language and Australian native speakers of English. The sample involved 96 BA and MA Persian students and 10 native speakers of English. A Discourse Completion Test (DCT) was used to generate data related to the request…
The large-scale continuous migration of speakers from the Anglophone Caribbean to the United States over the past 2 decades has led to an influx of school children who are native speakers of English-lexified Creoles (ELCs). These are oral languages which do not generally occur in formal institutional domains requiring academic registers. Thus,…
Yow, W. Quin; Markman, Ellen M.
Bilingual children regularly face communicative challenges when speakers switch languages. To cope with such challenges, children may attempt to discern a speaker's communicative intent, thereby heightening their sensitivity to nonverbal communicative cues. Two studies examined whether such communication breakdowns increase sensitivity to…
In critical period hypothesis (CPH) research, native speaker (NS) norm groups have often been used to determine whether nonnative speakers (NNSs) were able to score within the NS range of scores. One goal of this article is to investigate what NS samples were used in previous CPH research. The literature review shows that NS control groups tend to…
Blake, Robert J.; Zyzik, Eve C.
Explores the interaction between heritage speakers and second language learners of Spanish in a synchronous computer-assisted learning environment. Students in an intermediate language course were paired with heritage speakers. Transcripts of interactions were examined for points of negotiation. (Author/VWL)
Colombi, M. Cecilia
Heritage language speakers constitute a unique cultural and linguistic resource in the United States while also presenting particular challenges for language educators and language programs. This paper examines the potential of systemic functional linguistics (SFL) in a curriculum for Spanish second language learners/heritage speakers, with…
Yunusova, Yana; Weismer, Gary G.; Lindstrom, Mary J.
Purpose: In this study, the authors classified vocalic segments produced by control speakers (C) and speakers with dysarthria due to amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) or Parkinson's disease (PD); classification was based on movement measures. The researchers asked the following questions: (a) Can vowels be classified on the basis of selected…
Yunusova, Yana; Weismer, Gary; Westbury, John R.; Lindstrom, Mary J.
Purpose: This study compared movement characteristics of markers attached to the jaw, lower lip, tongue blade, and dorsum during production of selected English vowels by normal speakers and speakers with dysarthria due to amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) or Parkinson disease (PD). The study asked the following questions: (a) Are movement…
Kim, Hoe Kyeung
An online discussion involving text-based computer-mediated communication has great potential for promoting equal participation among non-native speakers of English. Several studies claimed that online discussions could enhance the academic participation of non-native speakers of English. However, there is little research around participation…
Whitehill, Tara L.; Wong, Lina L. -N.
The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of intensive voice therapy on Cantonese speakers with Parkinson's disease. The effect of the treatment on lexical tone was of particular interest. Four Cantonese speakers with idiopathic Parkinson's disease received treatment based on the principles of Lee Silverman Voice Treatment (LSVT).…
To understand the Spanish speaker one must be aware of the many facets of Hispanic culture and the various means of communicating that language and that culture. The two main forms of communication, linguistics and paralinguistics, convey the speaker's behavior and identify him as a member of the Hispanic culture. Linguistic patterns in Spanish…
Kibishi, Hiroshi; Hirabayashi, Kuniaki; Nakagawa, Seiichi
In this paper, we propose a statistical evaluation method of pronunciation proficiency and intelligibility for presentations made in English by native Japanese speakers. We statistically analyzed the actual utterances of speakers to find combinations of acoustic and linguistic features with high correlation between the scores estimated by the…
In an article in "Cognition" [Machery, E., Mallon, R., Nichols, S., & Stich, S. (2004). "Semantics cross-cultural style." "Cognition, 92", B1-B12] present data which purports to show that East Asian Cantonese-speakers tend to have descriptivist intuitions about the referents of proper names, while Western English-speakers tend to have…
... From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office ] Vol. 78 Thursday, No. 211 October 31, 2013 Part IV The President Proclamation 9046--Death of Thomas S. Foley Former Speaker of the... ] Proclamation 9046 of October 28, 2013 Death of Thomas S. Foley Former Speaker of the House of...
Due to their unique profile as childhood bilinguals whose first language (L1) became weaker than their second language (L2), heritage speakers can shed light on three key issues in bilingualism--timing, input, and cross-linguistic interaction. The heritage speakers of focus in this dissertation are Korean second generation immigrants mainly…
Numerous studies have been conducted to explore issues surrounding non-native speakers (NNS) English teachers and native speaker (NS) teachers which concern, among others, the comparison between the two, the self-perceptions of NNS English teachers and the effectiveness of their teaching, and the students' opinions on and attitudes towards them.…
Bley-Vroman, Robert; Joo, Hye-Ri
Investigates whether native speakers of Korean learning English develop Knowledge of the holism effect in the English locative and knowledge of the narrow constraints. Results suggest that when given a ground-object structure, both learners and English native speakers preferentially chose a ground-holism picture. (Author/VWL)
Hustad, Katherine C.
Purpose: This study examined the relationship between listener comprehension and intelligibility scores for speakers with mild, moderate, severe, and profound dysarthria. Relationships were examined across all speakers and their listeners when severity effects were statistically controlled, within severity groups, and within individual speakers…
Kraljic, Tanya; Brennan, Susan E.
Evidence has been mixed on whether speakers spontaneously and reliably produce prosodic cues that resolve syntactic ambiguities. And when speakers do produce such cues, it is unclear whether they do so ''for'' their addressees (the "audience design" hypothesis) or ''for'' themselves, as a by-product of planning and articulating utterances. Three…
Riney, Timothy J.; Takagi, Naoyuki
Investigated the correlation between global foreign accent (GFA) and voice onset time (VOT). VOT values for /p/, /t/, and /k/ were measured at two times, separated by an interval of 42 months. Subjects were 11 Japanese speakers of English as a foreign language; 5 age-matched native speakers of English served as the control group. (Author/VWL)
Alford, Randall L.; Strother, Judith B.
Provides data from a study that sought to determine and compare the attitudes of both native and nonnative speakers of English who listened to the specific regional accents of the English spoken in the United States. The groups judgments differed, and nonnative speakers were better able to perceive differences in regional accents of U.S. English.…
Atkinson, Mark; Kirby, Simon; Smith, Kenny
A learner’s linguistic input is more variable if it comes from a greater number of speakers. Higher speaker input variability has been shown to facilitate the acquisition of phonemic boundaries, since data drawn from multiple speakers provides more information about the distribution of phonemes in a speech community. It has also been proposed that speaker input variability may have a systematic influence on individual-level learning of morphology, which can in turn influence the group-level characteristics of a language. Languages spoken by larger groups of people have less complex morphology than those spoken in smaller communities. While a mechanism by which the number of speakers could have such an effect is yet to be convincingly identified, differences in speaker input variability, which is thought to be larger in larger groups, may provide an explanation. By hindering the acquisition, and hence faithful cross-generational transfer, of complex morphology, higher speaker input variability may result in structural simplification. We assess this claim in two experiments which investigate the effect of such variability on language learning, considering its influence on a learner’s ability to segment a continuous speech stream and acquire a morphologically complex miniature language. We ultimately find no evidence to support the proposal that speaker input variability influences language learning and so cannot support the hypothesis that it explains how population size determines the structural properties of language. PMID:26057624
Isurin, Ludmila; Ivanova-Sullivan, Tanya
The present paper looks at the growing population of Russian heritage speakers from a linguistic and psycholinguistic perspective. The study attempts to clarify further the notion of heritage language by comparing the linguistic performance of heritage speakers with that of monolinguals and second language learners. The amount of exposure to…
Weirich, Melanie; Fuchs, Susanne
Purpose: The purpose of this study was to further explore the understanding of speaker-specific realizations of the /s/--/?/ contrast in German in relation to individual differences in palate shape. Method: Two articulatory experiments were carried out with German native speakers. In the first experiment, 4 monozygotic and 2 dizygotic twin pairs…
Hilliard, Caitlin; Cook, Susan Wagner
Communication is shaped both by what we are trying to say and by whom we are saying it to. We examined whether and how shared information influences the gestures speakers produce along with their speech. Unlike prior work examining effects of common ground on speech and gesture, we examined a situation in which some speakers have the same amount…
Sims, Brenda R.; Guice, Stephen
Compares 214 letters of inquiry written by native and nonnative speakers of English to test the assumption that cultural factors beyond language such as the knowledge of the business communication practices and cultural expectations greatly affect communication. Finds that native speakers' letters deviated less from U.S. business communication…
A study of business letters indicates striking differences in the politeness strategies used by native and nonnative English speakers. Nonnative speakers' language tended to be less formal, more direct, and showed an avoidance of certain politeness strategies. The findings suggest that even grammatically flawless business writing may be perceived…
Sobel, David M.; Sedivy, Julie; Buchanan, David W.; Hennessy, Rachel
Preschoolers participated in a modified version of the disambiguation task, designed to test whether the pragmatic environment generated by a reliable or unreliable speaker affected how children interpreted novel labels. Two objects were visible to children, while a third was only visible to the speaker (a fact known by the child). Manipulating…
Fluent speakers and stutterer's increased voice level were analyzed in response to voice-delayed auditory feedback, an Edinburgh masker, and white noise. These results are used to assess auditory feedback monitoring accounts of speech behavior of fluent speakers and stutterers with some implications for the treatment of stuttering. (37 references)…
Kong, Anthony Pak-Hin; Weekes, Brendan Stuart
The aim of this article is to illustrate the use of the Bilingual Aphasia Test (BAT) with a Cantonese-Putonghua speaker. We describe G, who is a relatively young Chinese bilingual speaker with aphasia. G's communication abilities in his L2, Putonghua, were impaired following brain damage. This impairment caused specific difficulties in…
Iverson, Paul; Pinet, Melanie; Evans, Bronwen G.
This study examined whether high-variability auditory training on natural speech can benefit experienced second-language English speakers who already are exposed to natural variability in their daily use of English. The subjects were native French speakers who had learned English in school; experienced listeners were tested in England and the less…
Ruecker, Todd; Ives, Lindsey
Over the past few decades, scholars have paid increasing attention to the role of native speakerism in the field of TESOL. Several recent studies have exposed instances of native speakerism in TESOL recruitment discourses published through a variety of media, but none have focused specifically on professional websites advertising programs in…
Akhtar, Nameera; Menjivar, Jennifer; Hoicka, Elena; Sabbagh, Mark A
Three- and four-year-olds (N = 144) were introduced to novel labels by an English speaker and a foreign speaker (of Nordish, a made-up language), and were asked to endorse one of the speaker's labels. Monolingual English-speaking children were compared to bilingual children and English-speaking children who were regularly exposed to a language other than English. All children tended to endorse the English speaker's labels when asked 'What do you call this?', but when asked 'What do you call this in Nordish?', children with exposure to a second language were more likely to endorse the foreign label than monolingual and bilingual children. The findings suggest that, at this age, exposure to, but not necessarily immersion in, more than one language may promote the ability to learn foreign words from a foreign speaker.
Kim, Yunjung; Weismer, Gary; Kent, Ray D.
In previous work [J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 117, 2605 (2005)], we reported on formant trajectory characteristics of a relatively large number of speakers with dysarthria and near-normal speech intelligibility. The purpose of that analysis was to begin a documentation of the variability, within relatively homogeneous speech-severity groups, of acoustic measures commonly used to predict across-speaker variation in speech intelligibility. In that study we found that even with near-normal speech intelligibility (90%-100%), many speakers had reduced formant slopes for some words and distributional characteristics of acoustic measures that were different than values obtained from normal speakers. In the current report we extend those findings to a group of speakers with dysarthria with somewhat poorer speech intelligibility than the original group. Results are discussed in terms of the utility of certain acoustic measures as indices of speech intelligibility, and as explanatory data for theories of dysarthria. [Work supported by NIH Award R01 DC00319.
Wertsch, J V
Results are reported for an experiment which examined the influence of listener perception of speaker intention on sentence recognition. Given the same passage and recognition sentences, subjects displayed different false recognition patterns of test items depending on which of two speakers with opposing viewpoints the passage was attributed to. It is argued that the reconstructive process of memory is based on information from the context (e.g., the speaker's perceived intentions) as well as on the actual words used. Retention of different aspects of a message is seen to rely on information from different sources. Specifically, the results of the study indicate that retention of meaning involving the speaker's predictions, opinions, etc., is influenced by the listener's perception of the speaker.
Obermeier, Christian; Kelly, Spencer D; Gunter, Thomas C
In face-to-face communication, speech is typically enriched by gestures. Clearly, not all people gesture in the same way, and the present study explores whether such individual differences in gesture style are taken into account during the perception of gestures that accompany speech. Participants were presented with one speaker that gestured in a straightforward way and another that also produced self-touch movements. Adding trials with such grooming movements makes the gesture information a much weaker cue compared with the gestures of the non-grooming speaker. The Electroencephalogram was recorded as participants watched videos of the individual speakers. Event-related potentials elicited by the speech signal revealed that adding grooming movements attenuated the impact of gesture for this particular speaker. Thus, these data suggest that there is sensitivity to the personal communication style of a speaker and that affects the extent to which gesture and speech are integrated during language comprehension.
Kriengwatana, Buddhamas; Terry, Josephine; Chládková, Kateřina; Escudero, Paola
Listeners are able to cope with between-speaker variability in speech that stems from anatomical sources (i.e. individual and sex differences in vocal tract size) and sociolinguistic sources (i.e. accents). We hypothesized that listeners adapt to these two types of variation differently because prior work indicates that adapting to speaker/sex variability may occur pre-lexically while adapting to accent variability may require learning from attention to explicit cues (i.e. feedback). In Experiment 1, we tested our hypothesis by training native Dutch listeners and Australian-English (AusE) listeners without any experience with Dutch or Flemish to discriminate between the Dutch vowels /I/ and /ε/ from a single speaker. We then tested their ability to classify /I/ and /ε/ vowels of a novel Dutch speaker (i.e. speaker or sex change only), or vowels of a novel Flemish speaker (i.e. speaker or sex change plus accent change). We found that both Dutch and AusE listeners could successfully categorize vowels if the change involved a speaker/sex change, but not if the change involved an accent change. When AusE listeners were given feedback on their categorization responses to the novel speaker in Experiment 2, they were able to successfully categorize vowels involving an accent change. These results suggest that adapting to accents may be a two-step process, whereby the first step involves adapting to speaker differences at a pre-lexical level, and the second step involves adapting to accent differences at a contextual level, where listeners have access to word meaning or are given feedback that allows them to appropriately adjust their perceptual category boundaries. PMID:27309889
Dragoy, Olga; Stowe, Laurie A.; Bos, Laura S.; Bastiaanse, Roelien
Time reference in Indo-European languages is marked on the verb. With tensed verb forms, the speaker can refer to the past (wrote, has written), present (writes, is writing) or future (will write). Reference to the past through verb morphology has been shown to be particularly vulnerable in agrammatic aphasia and both agrammatic and…
Regel, Stefanie; Coulson, Seana; Gunter, Thomas C
An important issue in irony comprehension concerns when and how listeners integrate extra-linguistic and linguistic information to compute the speaker's intended meaning. To assess whether knowledge about the speaker's communicative style impacts the brain response to irony, ERPs were recorded as participants read short passages that ended either with literal or ironic statements made by one of two speakers. The experiment was carried out in two sessions in which each speaker's use of irony was manipulated. In Session 1, 70% of ironic statements were made by the ironic speaker, while the non-ironic speaker expressed 30% of them. For irony by the non-ironic speaker, an increased P600 was observed relative to literal utterances. By contrast, both ironic and literal statements made by the ironic speaker elicited similar P600 amplitudes. In Session 2, conducted 1 day later, both speakers' use of irony was balanced (i.e. 50% ironic, 50% literal). ERPs for Session 2 showed an irony-related P600 for the ironic speaker but not for the non-ironic speaker. Moreover, P200 amplitude was larger for sentences congruent with each speaker's communicative style (i.e. for irony made by the ironic speaker, and for literal statements made by the non-ironic speaker). These findings indicate that pragmatic knowledge about speakers can affect language comprehension 200 ms after the onset of a critical word, as well as neurocognitive processes underlying the later stages of comprehension (500-900 ms post-onset). Thus perceived speakers' characteristics dynamically impact the construction of appropriate interpretations of ironic utterances.
Bley-Vroman, Robert; Yoshinaga, Naoko
Investigates the knowledge of multiple wh-questions such as "Who ate what?" by high-proficiency Japanese speakers of English. Acceptability judgments were obtained on six different types of questions. Acceptability of English examples was rated by native speakers of English, Japanese examples were judged by native speakers of Japanese,…
McNaughton, Stephanie; McDonough, Kim
This exploratory study investigated second language (L2) French speakers' service encounters in the multilingual setting of Montreal, specifically whether switches to English during French service encounters were related to L2 speakers' willingness to communicate or motivation. Over a two-week period, 17 French L2 speakers in Montreal submitted…
Reports on a study investigating how Americans respond to English as a Second Language (ESL) speech depending on the non-native speaker's accent and whether there were errors in the ESL speech. Findings indicate that Americans exhibit different cultural prejudices towards different foreign speakers depending on the accent of the speakers. (50…
De Leon, Phillip L.; McClanahan, Richard D.
In speaker verification (SV) systems that employ a support vector machine (SVM) classifier to make decisions on a supervector derived from Gaussian mixture model (GMM) component mean vectors, a significant portion of the computational load is involved in the calculation of the a posteriori probability of the feature vectors of the speaker under test with respect to the individual component densities of the universal background model (UBM). Further, the calculation of the sufficient statistics for the weight, mean, and covariance parameters derived from these same feature vectors also contribute a substantial amount of processing load to the SV system. In this paper, we propose a method that utilizes clusters of GMM-UBM mixture component densities in order to reduce the computational load required. In the adaptation step we score the feature vectors against the clusters and calculate the a posteriori probabilities and update the statistics exclusively for mixture components belonging to appropriate clusters. Each cluster is a grouping of multivariate normal distributions and is modeled by a single multivariate distribution. As such, the set of multivariate normal distributions representing the different clusters also form a GMM. This GMM is referred to as a hash GMM which can be considered to a lower resolution representation of the GMM-UBM. The mapping that associates the components of the hash GMM with components of the original GMM-UBM is referred to as a shortlist. This research investigates various methods of clustering the components of the GMM-UBM and forming hash GMMs. Of five different methods that are presented one method, Gaussian mixture reduction as proposed by Runnall's, easily outperformed the other methods. This method of Gaussian reduction iteratively reduces the size of a GMM by successively merging pairs of component densities. Pairs are selected for merger by using a Kullback-Leibler based metric. Using Runnal's method of reduction, we were able
Vasic, Nada; Avrutin, Sergey; Ruigendijk, Esther
In this paper, we investigate the ability of Dutch agrammatic Broca's and Wernicke's aphasics to assign reference to possessive pronouns in elided VP constructions. The assumption is that the comprehension problems in these two populations have different sources that are revealed in distinct patterns of responses. The focus is primarily on the…
This study aims at investigating the production of the Greek modal and negative particles by non-fluent aphasic patients. These particles belong to the highest part of the verb periphrasis, so they are likely to be impaired in non-fluent aphasia, according to some hypotheses about agrammatic language. Moreover, there is an agreement relation…
Ruigendijk, Esther; Vasic, Nada; Avrutin, Sergey
We report results of an experimental study with Dutch agrammatic aphasics that investigated their ability to interpret pronominal elements in transitive clauses and Exceptional Case Marking constructions (ECM). Using the obtained experimental results as a tool, we distinguish between three competing linguistic theories that aim at determining…
Kuhlen, Anna K.; Allefeld, Carsten; Haynes, John-Dylan
Cognitive neuroscience has recently begun to extend its focus from the isolated individual mind to two or more individuals coordinating with each other. In this study we uncover a coordination of neural activity between the ongoing electroencephalogram (EEG) of two people—a person speaking and a person listening. The EEG of one set of twelve participants (“speakers”) was recorded while they were narrating short stories. The EEG of another set of twelve participants (“listeners”) was recorded while watching audiovisual recordings of these stories. Specifically, listeners watched the superimposed videos of two speakers simultaneously and were instructed to attend either to one or the other speaker. This allowed us to isolate neural coordination due to processing the communicated content from the effects of sensory input. We find several neural signatures of communication: First, the EEG is more similar among listeners attending to the same speaker than among listeners attending to different speakers, indicating that listeners' EEG reflects content-specific information. Secondly, listeners' EEG activity correlates with the attended speakers' EEG, peaking at a time delay of about 12.5 s. This correlation takes place not only between homologous, but also between non-homologous brain areas in speakers and listeners. A semantic analysis of the stories suggests that listeners coordinate with speakers at the level of complex semantic representations, so-called “situation models”. With this study we link a coordination of neural activity between individuals directly to verbally communicated information. PMID:23060770
Past work has investigated cross-speaker and cross-gender differences in voicing of /h/ in English speakers. The purpose of this study was to see whether a phonetically sophisticated speaker could intentionally alter his /h/ voicing patterns, and, if so, how he would effect any changes. One adult male speaker of American English, a trained phonetician and dialectologist, produced approximately 500 repetitions of intervocalic /h/ in short carrier phrases, with differing vowel contexts and loudness levels. In the first block, the speaker produced the utterances normally (i.e., without specific instructions on /h/ production); in the second, he was explicitly asked to devoice his /h/'s. Results indicated that the incidence of devoiced /h/ increased from 2% in the first block to 69% in the second block. On average, the /h/'s in the second block were produced with higher baseline airflows, indicating more extreme laryngeal abduction. This alone did not account for the speaker's devoicing behavior, however, since the soft condition, which had the lowest peak airflows in the second block, had the most devoicing. Voice source measures will be compared between the two blocks to clarify how the speaker altered his laryngeal setting to achieve more devoicing. [Work supported by NIH.
Marno, Hanna; Guellai, Bahia; Vidal, Yamil; Franzoi, Julia; Nespor, Marina; Mehler, Jacques
From the first moments of their life, infants show a preference for their native language, as well as toward speakers with whom they share the same language. This preference appears to have broad consequences in various domains later on, supporting group affiliations and collaborative actions in children. Here, we propose that infants’ preference for native speakers of their language also serves a further purpose, specifically allowing them to efficiently acquire culture specific knowledge via social learning. By selectively attending to informants who are native speakers of their language and who probably also share the same cultural background with the infant, young learners can maximize the possibility to acquire cultural knowledge. To test whether infants would preferably attend the information they receive from a speaker of their native language, we familiarized 12-month-old infants with a native and a foreign speaker, and then presented them with movies where each of the speakers silently gazed toward unfamiliar objects. At test, infants’ looking behavior to the two objects alone was measured. Results revealed that infants preferred to look longer at the object presented by the native speaker. Strikingly, the effect was replicated also with 5-month-old infants, indicating an early development of such preference. These findings provide evidence that young infants pay more attention to the information presented by a person with whom they share the same language. This selectivity can serve as a basis for efficient social learning by influencing how infants’ allocate attention between potential sources of information in their environment. PMID:27536263
Nose, Takashi; Tachibana, Makoto; Kobayashi, Takao
This paper presents methods for controlling the intensity of emotional expressions and speaking styles of an arbitrary speaker's synthetic speech by using a small amount of his/her speech data in HMM-based speech synthesis. Model adaptation approaches are introduced into the style control technique based on the multiple-regression hidden semi-Markov model (MRHSMM). Two different approaches are proposed for training a target speaker's MRHSMMs. The first one is MRHSMM-based model adaptation in which the pretrained MRHSMM is adapted to the target speaker's model. For this purpose, we formulate the MLLR adaptation algorithm for the MRHSMM. The second method utilizes simultaneous adaptation of speaker and style from an average voice model to obtain the target speaker's style-dependent HSMMs which are used for the initialization of the MRHSMM. From the result of subjective evaluation using adaptation data of 50 sentences of each style, we show that the proposed methods outperform the conventional speaker-dependent model training when using the same size of speech data of the target speaker.
Mesgarani, Nima; Chang, Edward F
Humans possess a remarkable ability to attend to a single speaker's voice in a multi-talker background. How the auditory system manages to extract intelligible speech under such acoustically complex and adverse listening conditions is not known, and, indeed, it is not clear how attended speech is internally represented. Here, using multi-electrode surface recordings from the cortex of subjects engaged in a listening task with two simultaneous speakers, we demonstrate that population responses in non-primary human auditory cortex encode critical features of attended speech: speech spectrograms reconstructed based on cortical responses to the mixture of speakers reveal the salient spectral and temporal features of the attended speaker, as if subjects were listening to that speaker alone. A simple classifier trained solely on examples of single speakers can decode both attended words and speaker identity. We find that task performance is well predicted by a rapid increase in attention-modulated neural selectivity across both single-electrode and population-level cortical responses. These findings demonstrate that the cortical representation of speech does not merely reflect the external acoustic environment, but instead gives rise to the perceptual aspects relevant for the listener's intended goal.
The goal of this project was to design, model, build, and test a flat panel speaker and frame for a spherical dome structure being made into a simulator. The simulator will be a test bed for evaluating an immersive environment for human interfaces. This project focused on the loud speakers and a sound diffuser for the dome. The rest of the team worked on an Ambisonics 3D sound system, video projection system, and multi-direction treadmill to create the most realistic scene possible. The main programs utilized in this project, were Pro-E and COMSOL. Pro-E was used for creating detailed figures for the fabrication of a frame that held a flat panel loud speaker. The loud speaker was made from a thin sheet of Plexiglas and 4 acoustic exciters. COMSOL, a multiphysics finite analysis simulator, was used to model and evaluate all stages of the loud speaker, frame, and sound diffuser. Acoustical testing measurements were utilized to create polar plots from the working prototype which were then compared to the COMSOL simulations to select the optimal design for the dome. The final goal of the project was to install the flat panel loud speaker design in addition to a sound diffuser on to the wall of the dome. After running tests in COMSOL on various speaker configurations, including a warped Plexiglas version, the optimal speaker design included a flat piece of Plexiglas with a rounded frame to match the curvature of the dome. Eight of these loud speakers will be mounted into an inch and a half of high performance acoustic insulation, or Thinsulate, that will cover the inside of the dome. The following technical paper discusses these projects and explains the engineering processes used, knowledge gained, and the projected future goals of this project
Beasley, Christopher; Torres-Harding, Susan; Pedersen, Paula J.
Recent societal trends indicate more tolerance for homosexuality, but prejudice remains on college campuses. Speaker panels are commonly used in classrooms as a way to educate students about sexual diversity and decrease negative attitudes toward sexual diversity. The advent of computer delivered instruction presents a unique opportunity to broaden the impact of traditional speaker panels. The current investigation examined the influence of an interactive “virtual” gay and lesbian speaker panel on cognitive, affective, and behavioral homonegativity. Findings suggest the computer-administered panel is lowers homonegativity, particularly for affective experiential homonegativity. The implications of these findings for research and practice are discussed. PMID:23646036
Doyle, P C; Haaf, R G
The purpose of this project was to investigate the perception of consonant-vowel-consonant (CVC) stimuli produced by four tracheoesophageal (TE) speakers. Stimuli were representative of five phonetic manner classes (stop, fricative, affricate, nasal, and liquidglide). Twelve naive normal-hearing young adults served as listeners. Stimuli were presented via headphones and listeners were prepared and analyses of the data were conducted for individual speakers and for the entire group. The listeners' perceptual judgments were analyzed for each manner of production by phonetic context. Based on statistical analyses of the data obtained, all four speakers were perceived by listeners to produce post-vocalic consonants with significantly better intelligibility.
Hu, Chao; Wang, Qiandong; Short, Lindsey A.; Fu, Genyue
The current study explored the correlation between speakers' Eysenck personality traits and speech spectrum parameters. Forty-six subjects completed the Eysenck Personality Questionnaire. They were instructed to verbally answer the questions shown on a computer screen and their responses were recorded by the computer. Spectrum parameters of /sh/ and /i/ were analyzed by Praat voice software. Formant frequencies of the consonant /sh/ in lying responses were significantly lower than that in truthful responses, whereas no difference existed on the vowel /i/ speech spectrum. The second formant bandwidth of the consonant /sh/ speech spectrum was significantly correlated with the personality traits of Psychoticism, Extraversion, and Neuroticism, and the correlation differed between truthful and lying responses, whereas the first formant frequency of the vowel /i/ speech spectrum was negatively correlated with Neuroticism in both response types. The results suggest that personality characteristics may be conveyed through the human voice, although the extent to which these effects are due to physiological differences in the organs associated with speech or to a general Pygmalion effect is yet unknown. PMID:22439014
Hu, Chao; Wang, Qiandong; Short, Lindsey A; Fu, Genyue
The current study explored the correlation between speakers' Eysenck personality traits and speech spectrum parameters. Forty-six subjects completed the Eysenck Personality Questionnaire. They were instructed to verbally answer the questions shown on a computer screen and their responses were recorded by the computer. Spectrum parameters of /sh/ and /i/ were analyzed by Praat voice software. Formant frequencies of the consonant /sh/ in lying responses were significantly lower than that in truthful responses, whereas no difference existed on the vowel /i/ speech spectrum. The second formant bandwidth of the consonant /sh/ speech spectrum was significantly correlated with the personality traits of Psychoticism, Extraversion, and Neuroticism, and the correlation differed between truthful and lying responses, whereas the first formant frequency of the vowel /i/ speech spectrum was negatively correlated with Neuroticism in both response types. The results suggest that personality characteristics may be conveyed through the human voice, although the extent to which these effects are due to physiological differences in the organs associated with speech or to a general Pygmalion effect is yet unknown.
Wuerger, Sophie; Xiao, Kaida; Mylonas, Dimitris; Huang, Qingmei; Karatzas, Dimosthenis; Hird, Emily; Paramei, Galina
Observers are faster to detect a target among a set of distracters if the targets and distracters come from different color categories. This cross-boundary advantage seems to be limited to the right visual field, which is consistent with the dominance of the left hemisphere for language processing [Gilbert et al., Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 103, 489 (2006)]. Here we study whether a similar visual field advantage is found in the color identification task in speakers of Mandarin, a language that uses a logographic system. Forty late Mandarin-English bilinguals performed a blue-green color categorization task, in a blocked design, in their first language (L1: Mandarin) or second language (L2: English). Eleven color singletons ranging from blue to green were presented for 160 ms, randomly in the left visual field (LVF) or right visual field (RVF). Color boundary and reaction times (RTs) at the color boundary were estimated in L1 and L2, for both visual fields. We found that the color boundary did not differ between the languages; RTs at the color boundary, however, were on average more than 100 ms shorter in the English compared to the Mandarin sessions, but only when the stimuli were presented in the RVF. The finding may be explained by the script nature of the two languages: Mandarin logographic characters are analyzed visuospatially in the right hemisphere, which conceivably facilitates identification of color presented to the LVF.
Schäfer, Martina; Robb, Michael P
The purpose of this study was to examine stuttering behavior in German-English bilingual people who stutter (PWS), with particular reference to the frequency of stuttering on content and function words. Fifteen bilingual PWS were sampled who spoke German as the first language (L1) and English as a second language (L2). Conversational speech was sampled in each language and analyzed for the percentage of overall stuttering-like disfluencies and distribution of stuttering on content and function words. Significantly more stuttering was found to occur in L2 compared to L1. Stuttering occurred significantly more often on content words compared to function words in L1. No significant difference between stuttering on function and content words was observed in L2. Examination across L1 and L2 found a significantly greater percentage of stuttering on function words in L2 compared to L1, and a significantly lower percentage of stuttering on content words in L2 compared to L1. The characteristics of stuttering in L2 could not be differentiated on the basis of an L2 proficiency measure. The differences observed in the amount of stuttering between L1 and L2 suggest that stuttering in bilingual speakers is closely related to language dominance, with features of stuttering in L2 indicative of a less developed language system.
Roberson, Debi; Hanley, J Richard; Pak, Hyensou
Categorical perception (CP) is said to occur when a continuum of equally spaced physical changes is perceived as unequally spaced as a function of category membership (Harnad, S. (Ed.) (1987). Psychophysical and cognitive aspects of categorical perception: A critical overview. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press). A common suggestion is that CP for color arises because perception is qualitatively distorted when we learn to categorize a dimension. Contrary to this view, we here report that English speakers show no evidence of lowered discrimination thresholds at the boundaries between blue and green categories even though CP is found at these boundaries in a supra-threshold task. Furthermore, there is no evidence of different discrimination thresholds between individuals from two language groups (English and Korean) who use different color terminology in the blue-green region and have different supra-threshold boundaries. Our participants' just noticeable difference (JND) thresholds suggest that they retain a smooth continuum of perceptual space that is not warped by stretching at category boundaries or by within-category compression. At least for the domain of color, categorical perception appears to be a categorical, but not a perceptual phenomenon.
Gibbs, R W; Nayak, N P; Bolton, J L; Keppel, M E
In three experiments, we examined why some idioms can be lexically altered and still retain their figurative meanings (e.g., John buttoned his lips about Mary can be changed into John fastened his lips about Mary and still mean "John didn't say anything about Mary"), whereas other idioms cannot be lexically altered without losing their figurative meanings (e.g., John kicked the bucket, meaning "John died," loses its idiomatic meaning when changed into John kicked the pail). Our hypothesis was that the lexical flexibility of idioms is determined by speakers' assumptions about the ways in which parts of idioms contribute to their figurative interpretations as a whole. The results of the three experiments indicated that idioms whose individual semantic components contribute to their overall figurative meanings (e.g., go out on a limb) were judged as less disrupted by changes in their lexical items (e.g., go out on a branch) than were nondecomposable idioms (e.g., kick the bucket) when their individual words were altered (e.g., punt the pail). These findings lend support to the idea that both the syntactic productivity and the lexical makeup of idioms are matters of degree, depending on the idioms' compositional properties. This conclusion suggests that idioms do not form a unique class of linguistic items, but share many of the properties of more literal language.
Meffert, Elisabeth; Tillmanns, Eva; Heim, Stefan; Jung, Stefanie; Huber, Walter; Grande, Marion
Two important research lines in neuro- and psycholinguistics are studying natural or experimentally induced slips of the tongue and investigating the symptom patterns of aphasic individuals. Only few studies have focused on explaining aphasic symptoms by provoking aphasic symptoms in healthy speakers. While all experimental techniques have so far…
Donai, Jeremy J; Motiian, Saeid; Doretto, Gianfranco
The high-frequency region of vowel signals (above the third formant or F3) has received little research attention. Recent evidence, however, has documented the perceptual utility of high-frequency information in the speech signal above the traditional frequency bandwidth known to contain important cues for speech and speaker recognition. The purpose of this study was to determine if high-pass filtered vowels could be separated by vowel category and speaker type in a supervised learning framework. Mel frequency cepstral coefficients (MFCCs) were extracted from productions of six vowel categories produced by two male, two female, and two child speakers. Results revealed that the filtered vowels were well separated by vowel category and speaker type using MFCCs from the high-frequency spectrum. This demonstrates the presence of useful information for automated classification from the high-frequency region and is the first study to report findings of this nature in a supervised learning framework.
Donai, Jeremy J.; Motiian, Saeid; Doretto, Gianfranco
The high-frequency region of vowel signals (above the third formant or F3) has received little research attention. Recent evidence, however, has documented the perceptual utility of high-frequency information in the speech signal above the traditional frequency bandwidth known to contain important cues for speech and speaker recognition. The purpose of this study was to determine if high-pass filtered vowels could be separated by vowel category and speaker type in a supervised learning framework. Mel frequency cepstral coefficients (MFCCs) were extracted from productions of six vowel categories produced by two male, two female, and two child speakers. Results revealed that the filtered vowels were well separated by vowel category and speaker type using MFCCs from the high-frequency spectrum. This demonstrates the presence of useful information for automated classification from the high-frequency region and is the first study to report findings of this nature in a supervised learning framework. PMID:27588160
Lass, Norman J.; And Others
Reports a study which shows that subjects can make discriminative judgments of a speaker's height and weight from his tape recorded speech. This ability is not altered by the filtering of the speech signal. (PMJ)
Stuart, Andrew; Kalinowski, Joseph; Rastatter, Michael P.; Lynch, Kerry
This study investigated the effect of short and long auditory feedback delays at two speech rates with normal speakers. Seventeen participants spoke under delayed auditory feedback (DAF) at 0, 25, 50, and 200 ms at normal and fast rates of speech. Significantly two to three times more dysfluencies were displayed at 200 ms (p<0.05) relative to no delay or the shorter delays. There were significantly more dysfluencies observed at the fast rate of speech (p=0.028). These findings implicate the peripheral feedback system(s) of fluent speakers for the disruptive effects of DAF on normal speech production at long auditory feedback delays. Considering the contrast in fluency/dysfluency exhibited between normal speakers and those who stutter at short and long delays, it appears that speech disruption of normal speakers under DAF is a poor analog of stuttering.
Merriman, William E.; Evey, Julie A.
If after teaching a label for 1 object, a speaker does not name a nearby object, 3-year-olds tend to reject the label for the nearby object (W.E. Merriman, J.M. Marazita, L.H. Jarvis, J.A. Evey-Burkey, and M. Biggins, 1995a). In Studies 1 (5-year-olds) and 3 (3-year-olds), this effect depended on object similarity. In Study 2, when a speaker used…
Suh, Youngjoo; Kim, Hoirin
In this paper, a new discriminative likelihood score weighting technique is proposed for speaker identification. The proposed method employs a discriminative weighting of frame-level log-likelihood scores with acoustic-phonetic classification in the Gaussian mixture model (GMM)-based speaker identification. Experiments performed on the Aurora noise-corrupted TIMIT database showed that the proposed approach provides meaningful performance improvement with an overall relative error reduction of 15.8% over the maximum likelihood-based baseline GMM approach.
Knoeferle, Pia; Kreysa, Helene
During comprehension, a listener can rapidly follow a frontally seated speaker’s gaze to an object before its mention, a behavior which can shorten latencies in speeded sentence verification. However, the robustness of gaze-following, its interaction with core comprehension processes such as syntactic structuring, and the persistence of its effects are unclear. In two “visual-world” eye-tracking experiments participants watched a video of a speaker, seated at an angle, describing transitive (non-depicted) actions between two of three Second Life characters on a computer screen. Sentences were in German and had either subjectNP1-verb-objectNP2 or objectNP1-verb-subjectNP2 structure; the speaker either shifted gaze to the NP2 character or was obscured. Several seconds later, participants verified either the sentence referents or their role relations. When participants had seen the speaker’s gaze shift, they anticipated the NP2 character before its mention and earlier than when the speaker was obscured. This effect was more pronounced for SVO than OVS sentences in both tasks. Interactions of speaker gaze and sentence structure were more pervasive in role-relations verification: participants verified the role relations faster for SVO than OVS sentences, and faster when they had seen the speaker shift gaze than when the speaker was obscured. When sentence and template role-relations matched, gaze-following even eliminated the SVO-OVS response-time differences. Thus, gaze-following is robust even when the speaker is seated at an angle to the listener; it varies depending on the syntactic structure and thematic role relations conveyed by a sentence; and its effects can extend to delayed post-sentence comprehension processes. These results suggest that speaker gaze effects contribute pervasively to visual attention and comprehension processes and should thus be accommodated by accounts of situated language comprehension. PMID:23227018
Sun, Hanwu; Nwe, Tin Lay; Koh, Eugene Chin Wei; Bin, Ma; Li, Haizhou
This paper presents a speaker diarization system developed at the Institute for Infocomm Research (I2R) for NIST Rich Transcription 2007 (RT-07) evaluation task. We describe in details our primary approaches for the speaker diarization on the Multiple Distant Microphones (MDM) conditions in conference room scenario. Our proposed system consists of six modules: 1). Least-mean squared (NLMS) adaptive filter for the speaker direction estimate via Time Difference of Arrival (TDOA), 2). An initial speaker clustering via two-stage TDOA histogram distribution quantization approach, 3). Multiple microphone speaker data alignment via GCC-PHAT Time Delay Estimate (TDE) among all the distant microphone channel signals, 4). A speaker clustering algorithm based on GMM modeling approach, 5). Non-speech removal via speech/non-speech verification mechanism and, 6). Silence removal via "Double-Layer Windowing"(DLW) method. We achieves error rate of 31.02% on the 2006 Spring (RT-06s) MDM evaluation task and a competitive overall error rate of 15.32% for the NIST Rich Transcription 2007 (RT-07) MDM evaluation task.
Nan, Yun; Sun, Yanan; Peretz, Isabelle
Congenital amusia is a neurogenetic disorder that affects the processing of musical pitch in speakers of non-tonal languages like English and French. We assessed whether this musical disorder exists among speakers of Mandarin Chinese who use pitch to alter the meaning of words. Using the Montreal Battery of Evaluation of Amusia, we tested 117 healthy young Mandarin speakers with no self-declared musical problems and 22 individuals who reported musical difficulties and scored two standard deviations below the mean obtained by the Mandarin speakers without amusia. These 22 amusic individuals showed a similar pattern of musical impairment as did amusic speakers of non-tonal languages, by exhibiting a more pronounced deficit in melody than in rhythm processing. Furthermore, nearly half the tested amusics had impairments in the discrimination and identification of Mandarin lexical tones. Six showed marked impairments, displaying what could be called lexical tone agnosia, but had normal tone production. Our results show that speakers of tone languages such as Mandarin may experience musical pitch disorder despite early exposure to speech-relevant pitch contrasts. The observed association between the musical disorder and lexical tone difficulty indicates that the pitch disorder as defining congenital amusia is not specific to music or culture but is rather general in nature.
Byers-Heinlein, Krista; Behrend, Douglas A; Said, Lyakout Mohamed; Girgis, Helana; Poulin-Dubois, Diane
Past research has shown that young monolingual children exhibit language-based social biases: they prefer native language to foreign language speakers. The current research investigated how children's language preferences are influenced by their own bilingualism and by a speaker's bilingualism. Monolingual and bilingual 4- to 6-year-olds heard pairs of adults (a monolingual and a bilingual, or two monolinguals) and chose the person with whom they wanted to be friends. Whether they were from a largely monolingual or a largely bilingual community, monolingual children preferred monolingual to bilingual speakers, and native language to foreign language speakers. In contrast, bilingual children showed similar affiliation with monolingual and bilingual speakers, as well as for monolingual speakers using their dominant versus non-dominant language. Exploratory analyses showed that individual bilinguals displayed idiosyncratic patterns of preference. These results reveal that language-based preferences emerge from a complex interaction of factors, including preference for in-group members, avoidance of out-group members, and characteristics of the child as they relate to the status of the languages within the community. Moreover, these results have implications for bilingual children's social acceptance by their peers.
Wang, Shizhen; Lulich, Steven M; Alwan, Abeer
Speaker normalization typically focuses on inter-speaker variabilities of the supraglottal (vocal tract) resonances, which constitute a major cause of spectral mismatch. Recent studies have shown that the subglottal airways also affect spectral properties of speech sounds, and promising results were reported using the subglottal resonances for speaker normalization. This paper proposes a reliable algorithm to automatically estimate the second subglottal resonance (Sg2) from speech signals. The algorithm is calibrated on children's speech data with simultaneous accelerometer recordings from which Sg2 frequencies can be directly measured. A cross-language study with bilingual Spanish-English children is performed to investigate whether Sg2 frequencies are independent of speech content and language. The study verifies that Sg2 is approximately constant for a given speaker and thus can be a good candidate for limited data speaker normalization and cross-language adaptation. A speaker normalization method using Sg2 is then presented. This method is computationally more efficient than maximum-likelihood based vocal tract length normalization (VTLN), with performance better than VTLN for limited adaptation data and cross-language adaptation. Experimental results confirm that this method performs well in a variety of testing conditions and tasks.
Chen, Jenn-Yeu; Su, Jui-Ju; Lee, Chao-Yang; O'Seaghdha, Padraig G.
Chinese and English speakers seem to hold different conceptions of time which may be related to the different codings of time in the two languages. Employing a sentence-picture matching task, we have investigated this linguistic relativity in Chinese-English bilinguals varying in English proficiency and found that those with high proficiency…
This dissertation measured the acoustic properties of the English fricatives and affricates produced by native and Chinese L2 speakers of English to identify the phonetic basis and sources of a foreign accent and to explore the mechanism involved in L2 speech production and L2 phonological acquisition at the segmental level. Based on a Network…
Ng, Manwa L; Chen, Yang
The present study examined English sentence stress produced by native Cantonese speakers who were speaking English as a second language (ESL). Cantonese ESL speakers' proficiency in English stress production as perceived by English-speaking listeners was also studied. Acoustical parameters associated with sentence stress including fundamental frequency (F0), vowel duration, and intensity were measured from the English sentences produced by 40 Cantonese ESL speakers. Data were compared with those obtained from 40 native speakers of American English. The speech samples were also judged by eight native listeners who were native speakers of American English for placement, degree, and naturalness of stress. Results showed that Cantonese ESL speakers were able to use F0, vowel duration, and intensity to differentiate sentence stress patterns. Yet, both female and male Cantonese ESL speakers exhibited consistently higher F0 in stressed words than English speakers. Overall, Cantonese ESL speakers were found to be proficient in using duration and intensity to signal sentence stress, in a way comparable with English speakers. In addition, F0 and intensity were found to correlate closely with perceptual judgement and the degree of stress with the naturalness of stress.
Skoog Waller, Sara; Eriksson, Mårten; Sörqvist, Patrik
Cognitive hearing science is mainly about the study of how cognitive factors contribute to speech comprehension, but cognitive factors also partake in speech processing to infer non-linguistic information from speech signals, such as the intentions of the talker and the speaker's age. Here, we report two experiments on age estimation by "naïve" listeners. The aim was to study how speech rate influences estimation of speaker age by comparing the speakers' natural speech rate with increased or decreased speech rate. In Experiment 1, listeners were presented with audio samples of read speech from three different speaker age groups (young, middle aged, and old adults). They estimated the speakers as younger when speech rate was faster than normal and as older when speech rate was slower than normal. This speech rate effect was slightly greater in magnitude for older (60-65 years) speakers in comparison with younger (20-25 years) speakers, suggesting that speech rate may gain greater importance as a perceptual age cue with increased speaker age. This pattern was more pronounced in Experiment 2, in which listeners estimated age from spontaneous speech. Faster speech rate was associated with lower age estimates, but only for older and middle aged (40-45 years) speakers. Taken together, speakers of all age groups were estimated as older when speech rate decreased, except for the youngest speakers in Experiment 2. The absence of a linear speech rate effect in estimates of younger speakers, for spontaneous speech, implies that listeners use different age estimation strategies or cues (possibly vocabulary) depending on the age of the speaker and the spontaneity of the speech. Potential implications for forensic investigations and other applied domains are discussed.
Hung, Wan-Yu; Patrycia, Ferninda; Yow, W Q
Past research has investigated how children use different sources of information such as social cues and word-learning heuristics to infer referential intents. The present research explored how children weigh and use some of these cues to make referential inferences. Specifically, we examined how switching between languages known (familiar) or unknown (unfamiliar) to a child would influence his or her choice of cue to interpret a novel label in a challenging disambiguation task, where a pointing cue was pitted against the mutual exclusivity (ME) principle. Forty-eight 3-and 4-years-old English-Mandarin bilingual children listened to a story told either in English only (No-Switch), English and Mandarin (Familiar-Switch), English and Japanese (Unfamiliar-Switch), or English and English-sounding nonsense sentences (Nonsense-Switch). They were then asked to select an object (from a pair of familiar and novel objects) after hearing a novel label paired with the speaker's point at the familiar object, e.g., "Can you give me the blicket?" Results showed that children in the Familiar-Switch condition were more willing to relax ME to follow the speaker's point to pick the familiar object than those in the Unfamiliar-Switch condition, who were more likely to pick the novel object. No significant differences were found between the other conditions. Further analyses revealed that children in the Unfamiliar-Switch condition looked at the speaker longer than children in the other conditions when the switch happened. Our findings suggest that children weigh speakers' referential cues and word-learning heuristics differently in different language contexts while taking into account their communicative history with the speaker. There are important implications for general education and other learning efforts, such as designing learning games so that the history of credibility with the user is maintained and how learning may be best scaffolded in a helpful and trusting environment.
Bonte, Milene; Hausfeld, Lars; Scharke, Wolfgang; Valente, Giancarlo; Formisano, Elia
Selective attention to relevant sound properties is essential for everyday listening situations. It enables the formation of different perceptual representations of the same acoustic input and is at the basis of flexible and goal-dependent behavior. Here, we investigated the role of the human auditory cortex in forming behavior-dependent representations of sounds. We used single-trial fMRI and analyzed cortical responses collected while subjects listened to the same speech sounds (vowels /a/, /i/, and /u/) spoken by different speakers (boy, girl, male) and performed a delayed-match-to-sample task on either speech sound or speaker identity. Univariate analyses showed a task-specific activation increase in the right superior temporal gyrus/sulcus (STG/STS) during speaker categorization and in the right posterior temporal cortex during vowel categorization. Beyond regional differences in activation levels, multivariate classification of single trial responses demonstrated that the success with which single speakers and vowels can be decoded from auditory cortical activation patterns depends on task demands and subject's behavioral performance. Speaker/vowel classification relied on distinct but overlapping regions across the (right) mid-anterior STG/STS (speakers) and bilateral mid-posterior STG/STS (vowels), as well as the superior temporal plane including Heschl's gyrus/sulcus. The task dependency of speaker/vowel classification demonstrates that the informative fMRI response patterns reflect the top-down enhancement of behaviorally relevant sound representations. Furthermore, our findings suggest that successful selection, processing, and retention of task-relevant sound properties relies on the joint encoding of information across early and higher-order regions of the auditory cortex.
Manning, Molly; Franklin, Sue
In cognitive grammar (CG), there is no clear division between language and other cognitive processes; all linguistic form is conceptually meaningful. In this pilot study, a CG approach was applied to investigate whether people with aphasia (PWA) have cognitive linguistic difficulty not predicted from traditional, componential models of aphasia. Narrative samples from 22 PWA (6 fluent, 16 non-fluent) were compared with samples from 10 participants without aphasia. Between-group differences were tested statistically. PWA had significant difficulty with temporal sequencing, suggesting problems that are not uniquely linguistic. For some, these problems were doubly dissociated with naming, used as a general measure of severity, which indicates that cognitive linguistic difficulties are not linked with more widespread brain damage. Further investigation may lead to a richer account of aphasia in line with contemporary linguistics and cognitive science approaches.