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Sample records for speech perception

  1. Musician advantage for speech-on-speech perception.

    PubMed

    Başkent, Deniz; Gaudrain, Etienne

    2016-03-01

    Evidence for transfer of musical training to better perception of speech in noise has been mixed. Unlike speech-in-noise, speech-on-speech perception utilizes many of the skills that musical training improves, such as better pitch perception and stream segregation, as well as use of higher-level auditory cognitive functions, such as attention. Indeed, despite the few non-musicians who performed as well as musicians, on a group level, there was a strong musician benefit for speech perception in a speech masker. This benefit does not seem to result from better voice processing and could instead be related to better stream segregation or enhanced cognitive functions. PMID:27036287

  2. The Dynamic Nature of Speech Perception

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McQueen, James M.; Norris, Dennis; Cutler, Anne

    2006-01-01

    The speech perception system must be flexible in responding to the variability in speech sounds caused by differences among speakers and by language change over the lifespan of the listener. Indeed, listeners use lexical knowledge to retune perception of novel speech (Norris, McQueen, & Cutler, 2003). In that study, Dutch listeners made lexical…

  3. Infant Perception of Atypical Speech Signals

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vouloumanos, Athena; Gelfand, Hanna M.

    2013-01-01

    The ability to decode atypical and degraded speech signals as intelligible is a hallmark of speech perception. Human adults can perceive sounds as speech even when they are generated by a variety of nonhuman sources including computers and parrots. We examined how infants perceive the speech-like vocalizations of a parrot. Further, we examined how…

  4. Sensorimotor influences on speech perception in infancy.

    PubMed

    Bruderer, Alison G; Danielson, D Kyle; Kandhadai, Padmapriya; Werker, Janet F

    2015-11-01

    The influence of speech production on speech perception is well established in adults. However, because adults have a long history of both perceiving and producing speech, the extent to which the perception-production linkage is due to experience is unknown. We addressed this issue by asking whether articulatory configurations can influence infants' speech perception performance. To eliminate influences from specific linguistic experience, we studied preverbal, 6-mo-old infants and tested the discrimination of a nonnative, and hence never-before-experienced, speech sound distinction. In three experimental studies, we used teething toys to control the position and movement of the tongue tip while the infants listened to the speech sounds. Using ultrasound imaging technology, we verified that the teething toys consistently and effectively constrained the movement and positioning of infants' tongues. With a looking-time procedure, we found that temporarily restraining infants' articulators impeded their discrimination of a nonnative consonant contrast but only when the relevant articulator was selectively restrained to prevent the movements associated with producing those sounds. Our results provide striking evidence that even before infants speak their first words and without specific listening experience, sensorimotor information from the articulators influences speech perception. These results transform theories of speech perception by suggesting that even at the initial stages of development, oral-motor movements influence speech sound discrimination. Moreover, an experimentally induced "impairment" in articulator movement can compromise speech perception performance, raising the question of whether long-term oral-motor impairments may impact perceptual development.

  5. Sensorimotor influences on speech perception in infancy.

    PubMed

    Bruderer, Alison G; Danielson, D Kyle; Kandhadai, Padmapriya; Werker, Janet F

    2015-11-01

    The influence of speech production on speech perception is well established in adults. However, because adults have a long history of both perceiving and producing speech, the extent to which the perception-production linkage is due to experience is unknown. We addressed this issue by asking whether articulatory configurations can influence infants' speech perception performance. To eliminate influences from specific linguistic experience, we studied preverbal, 6-mo-old infants and tested the discrimination of a nonnative, and hence never-before-experienced, speech sound distinction. In three experimental studies, we used teething toys to control the position and movement of the tongue tip while the infants listened to the speech sounds. Using ultrasound imaging technology, we verified that the teething toys consistently and effectively constrained the movement and positioning of infants' tongues. With a looking-time procedure, we found that temporarily restraining infants' articulators impeded their discrimination of a nonnative consonant contrast but only when the relevant articulator was selectively restrained to prevent the movements associated with producing those sounds. Our results provide striking evidence that even before infants speak their first words and without specific listening experience, sensorimotor information from the articulators influences speech perception. These results transform theories of speech perception by suggesting that even at the initial stages of development, oral-motor movements influence speech sound discrimination. Moreover, an experimentally induced "impairment" in articulator movement can compromise speech perception performance, raising the question of whether long-term oral-motor impairments may impact perceptual development. PMID:26460030

  6. Speech Perception in Individuals with Auditory Neuropathy

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zeng, Fan-Gang; Liu, Sheng

    2006-01-01

    Purpose: Speech perception in participants with auditory neuropathy (AN) was systematically studied to answer the following 2 questions: Does noise present a particular problem for people with AN: Can clear speech and cochlear implants alleviate this problem? Method: The researchers evaluated the advantage in intelligibility of clear speech over…

  7. Production and perception of clear speech

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bradlow, Ann R.

    2003-04-01

    When a talker believes that the listener is likely to have speech perception difficulties due to a hearing loss, background noise, or a different native language, she or he will typically adopt a clear speaking style. Previous research has established that, with a simple set of instructions to the talker, ``clear speech'' can be produced by most talkers under laboratory recording conditions. Furthermore, there is reliable evidence that adult listeners with either impaired or normal hearing typically find clear speech more intelligible than conversational speech. Since clear speech production involves listener-oriented articulatory adjustments, a careful examination of the acoustic-phonetic and perceptual consequences of the conversational-to-clear speech transformation can serve as an effective window into talker- and listener-related forces in speech communication. Furthermore, clear speech research has considerable potential for the development of speech enhancement techniques. After reviewing previous and current work on the acoustic properties of clear versus conversational speech, this talk will present recent data from a cross-linguistic study of vowel production in clear speech and a cross-population study of clear speech perception. Findings from these studies contribute to an evolving view of clear speech production and perception as reflecting both universal, auditory and language-specific, phonological contrast enhancement features.

  8. Localization of Sublexical Speech Perception Components

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Turkeltaub, Peter E.; Coslett, H. Branch

    2010-01-01

    Models of speech perception are in general agreement with respect to the major cortical regions involved, but lack precision with regard to localization and lateralization of processing units. To refine these models we conducted two Activation Likelihood Estimation (ALE) meta-analyses of the neuroimaging literature on sublexical speech perception.…

  9. Portable Tactile Aids for Speech Perception.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lynch, Michael P.; And Others

    1989-01-01

    Experiments using portable tactile aids in speech perception are reviewed, focusing on training studies, additive benefit studies, and device comparison studies (including the "Tactaid II,""Tactaid V,""Tacticon 1600," and "Tickle Talker"). The potential of tactual information in perception of the overall speech code by hearing-impaired individuals…

  10. Infant perception of atypical speech signals.

    PubMed

    Vouloumanos, Athena; Gelfand, Hanna M

    2013-05-01

    The ability to decode atypical and degraded speech signals as intelligible is a hallmark of speech perception. Human adults can perceive sounds as speech even when they are generated by a variety of nonhuman sources including computers and parrots. We examined how infants perceive the speech-like vocalizations of a parrot. Further, we examined how visual context influences infant speech perception. Nine-month-olds heard speech and nonspeech sounds produced by either a human or a parrot, concurrently with 1 of 2 visual displays: a static checkerboard or a static image of a human face. Using an infant-controlled looking task, we examined infants' preferences for speech and nonspeech sounds. Infants listened equally to parrot speech and nonspeech when paired with a checkerboard. However, in the presence of faces, infants listened longer to parrot speech than to nonspeech sounds, such that their preference for parrot speech was similar to their preference for human speech sounds. These data are consistent with the possibility that infants treat parrot speech similarly to human speech relative to nonspeech vocalizations but only in some visual contexts. Like adults, infants may perceive a range of signals as speech.

  11. Individual differneces in degraded speech perception

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carbonell, Kathy M.

    One of the lasting concerns in audiology is the unexplained individual differences in speech perception performance even for individuals with similar audiograms. One proposal is that there are cognitive/perceptual individual differences underlying this vulnerability and that these differences are present in normal hearing (NH) individuals but do not reveal themselves in studies that use clear speech produced in quiet (because of a ceiling effect). However, previous studies have failed to uncover cognitive/perceptual variables that explain much of the variance in NH performance on more challenging degraded speech tasks. This lack of strong correlations may be due to either examining the wrong measures (e.g., working memory capacity) or to there being no reliable differences in degraded speech performance in NH listeners (i.e., variability in performance is due to measurement noise). The proposed project has 3 aims; the first, is to establish whether there are reliable individual differences in degraded speech performance for NH listeners that are sustained both across degradation types (speech in noise, compressed speech, noise-vocoded speech) and across multiple testing sessions. The second aim is to establish whether there are reliable differences in NH listeners' ability to adapt their phonetic categories based on short-term statistics both across tasks and across sessions; and finally, to determine whether performance on degraded speech perception tasks are correlated with performance on phonetic adaptability tasks, thus establishing a possible explanatory variable for individual differences in speech perception for NH and hearing impaired listeners.

  12. Neural pathways for visual speech perception

    PubMed Central

    Bernstein, Lynne E.; Liebenthal, Einat

    2014-01-01

    This paper examines the questions, what levels of speech can be perceived visually, and how is visual speech represented by the brain? Review of the literature leads to the conclusions that every level of psycholinguistic speech structure (i.e., phonetic features, phonemes, syllables, words, and prosody) can be perceived visually, although individuals differ in their abilities to do so; and that there are visual modality-specific representations of speech qua speech in higher-level vision brain areas. That is, the visual system represents the modal patterns of visual speech. The suggestion that the auditory speech pathway receives and represents visual speech is examined in light of neuroimaging evidence on the auditory speech pathways. We outline the generally agreed-upon organization of the visual ventral and dorsal pathways and examine several types of visual processing that might be related to speech through those pathways, specifically, face and body, orthography, and sign language processing. In this context, we examine the visual speech processing literature, which reveals widespread diverse patterns of activity in posterior temporal cortices in response to visual speech stimuli. We outline a model of the visual and auditory speech pathways and make several suggestions: (1) The visual perception of speech relies on visual pathway representations of speech qua speech. (2) A proposed site of these representations, the temporal visual speech area (TVSA) has been demonstrated in posterior temporal cortex, ventral and posterior to multisensory posterior superior temporal sulcus (pSTS). (3) Given that visual speech has dynamic and configural features, its representations in feedforward visual pathways are expected to integrate these features, possibly in TVSA. PMID:25520611

  13. Speech perception as an active cognitive process

    PubMed Central

    Heald, Shannon L. M.; Nusbaum, Howard C.

    2014-01-01

    One view of speech perception is that acoustic signals are transformed into representations for pattern matching to determine linguistic structure. This process can be taken as a statistical pattern-matching problem, assuming realtively stable linguistic categories are characterized by neural representations related to auditory properties of speech that can be compared to speech input. This kind of pattern matching can be termed a passive process which implies rigidity of processing with few demands on cognitive processing. An alternative view is that speech recognition, even in early stages, is an active process in which speech analysis is attentionally guided. Note that this does not mean consciously guided but that information-contingent changes in early auditory encoding can occur as a function of context and experience. Active processing assumes that attention, plasticity, and listening goals are important in considering how listeners cope with adverse circumstances that impair hearing by masking noise in the environment or hearing loss. Although theories of speech perception have begun to incorporate some active processing, they seldom treat early speech encoding as plastic and attentionally guided. Recent research has suggested that speech perception is the product of both feedforward and feedback interactions between a number of brain regions that include descending projections perhaps as far downstream as the cochlea. It is important to understand how the ambiguity of the speech signal and constraints of context dynamically determine cognitive resources recruited during perception including focused attention, learning, and working memory. Theories of speech perception need to go beyond the current corticocentric approach in order to account for the intrinsic dynamics of the auditory encoding of speech. In doing so, this may provide new insights into ways in which hearing disorders and loss may be treated either through augementation or therapy. PMID

  14. The Neural Substrates of Infant Speech Perception

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Homae, Fumitaka; Watanabe, Hama; Taga, Gentaro

    2014-01-01

    Infants often pay special attention to speech sounds, and they appear to detect key features of these sounds. To investigate the neural foundation of speech perception in infants, we measured cortical activation using near-infrared spectroscopy. We presented the following three types of auditory stimuli while 3-month-old infants watched a silent…

  15. Sensorimotor influences on speech perception in infancy

    PubMed Central

    Bruderer, Alison G.; Danielson, D. Kyle; Kandhadai, Padmapriya; Werker, Janet F.

    2015-01-01

    The influence of speech production on speech perception is well established in adults. However, because adults have a long history of both perceiving and producing speech, the extent to which the perception–production linkage is due to experience is unknown. We addressed this issue by asking whether articulatory configurations can influence infants’ speech perception performance. To eliminate influences from specific linguistic experience, we studied preverbal, 6-mo-old infants and tested the discrimination of a nonnative, and hence never-before-experienced, speech sound distinction. In three experimental studies, we used teething toys to control the position and movement of the tongue tip while the infants listened to the speech sounds. Using ultrasound imaging technology, we verified that the teething toys consistently and effectively constrained the movement and positioning of infants’ tongues. With a looking-time procedure, we found that temporarily restraining infants’ articulators impeded their discrimination of a nonnative consonant contrast but only when the relevant articulator was selectively restrained to prevent the movements associated with producing those sounds. Our results provide striking evidence that even before infants speak their first words and without specific listening experience, sensorimotor information from the articulators influences speech perception. These results transform theories of speech perception by suggesting that even at the initial stages of development, oral–motor movements influence speech sound discrimination. Moreover, an experimentally induced “impairment” in articulator movement can compromise speech perception performance, raising the question of whether long-term oral–motor impairments may impact perceptual development. PMID:26460030

  16. Auditory perception bias in speech imitation

    PubMed Central

    Postma-Nilsenová, Marie; Postma, Eric

    2013-01-01

    In an experimental study, we explored the role of auditory perception bias in vocal pitch imitation. Psychoacoustic tasks involving a missing fundamental indicate that some listeners are attuned to the relationship between all the higher harmonics present in the signal, which supports their perception of the fundamental frequency (the primary acoustic correlate of pitch). Other listeners focus on the lowest harmonic constituents of the complex sound signal which may hamper the perception of the fundamental. These two listener types are referred to as fundamental and spectral listeners, respectively. We hypothesized that the individual differences in speakers' capacity to imitate F0 found in earlier studies, may at least partly be due to the capacity to extract information about F0 from the speech signal. Participants' auditory perception bias was determined with a standard missing fundamental perceptual test. Subsequently, speech data were collected in a shadowing task with two conditions, one with a full speech signal and one with high-pass filtered speech above 300 Hz. The results showed that perception bias toward fundamental frequency was related to the degree of F0 imitation. The effect was stronger in the condition with high-pass filtered speech. The experimental outcomes suggest advantages for fundamental listeners in communicative situations where F0 imitation is used as a behavioral cue. Future research needs to determine to what extent auditory perception bias may be related to other individual properties known to improve imitation, such as phonetic talent. PMID:24204361

  17. Speech Perception in Children with Speech Output Disorders

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nijland, Lian

    2009-01-01

    Research in the field of speech production pathology is dominated by describing deficits in output. However, perceptual problems might underlie, precede, or interact with production disorders. The present study hypothesizes that the level of the production disorders is linked to level of perception disorders, thus lower-order production problems…

  18. Prediction and constraint in audiovisual speech perception

    PubMed Central

    Peelle, Jonathan E.; Sommers, Mitchell S.

    2015-01-01

    During face-to-face conversational speech listeners must efficiently process a rapid and complex stream of multisensory information. Visual speech can serve as a critical complement to auditory information because it provides cues to both the timing of the incoming acoustic signal (the amplitude envelope, influencing attention and perceptual sensitivity) and its content (place and manner of articulation, constraining lexical selection). Here we review behavioral and neurophysiological evidence regarding listeners' use of visual speech information. Multisensory integration of audiovisual speech cues improves recognition accuracy, particularly for speech in noise. Even when speech is intelligible based solely on auditory information, adding visual information may reduce the cognitive demands placed on listeners through increasing precision of prediction. Electrophysiological studies demonstrate oscillatory cortical entrainment to speech in auditory cortex is enhanced when visual speech is present, increasing sensitivity to important acoustic cues. Neuroimaging studies also suggest increased activity in auditory cortex when congruent visual information is available, but additionally emphasize the involvement of heteromodal regions of posterior superior temporal sulcus as playing a role in integrative processing. We interpret these findings in a framework of temporally-focused lexical competition in which visual speech information affects auditory processing to increase sensitivity to auditory information through an early integration mechanism, and a late integration stage that incorporates specific information about a speaker's articulators to constrain the number of possible candidates in a spoken utterance. Ultimately it is words compatible with both auditory and visual information that most strongly determine successful speech perception during everyday listening. Thus, audiovisual speech perception is accomplished through multiple stages of integration, supported

  19. A causal test of the motor theory of speech perception: A case of impaired speech production and spared speech perception

    PubMed Central

    Stasenko, Alena; Bonn, Cory; Teghipco, Alex; Garcea, Frank E.; Sweet, Catherine; Dombovy, Mary; McDonough, Joyce; Mahon, Bradford Z.

    2015-01-01

    In the last decade, the debate about the causal role of the motor system in speech perception has been reignited by demonstrations that motor processes are engaged during the processing of speech sounds. However, the exact role of the motor system in auditory speech processing remains elusive. Here we evaluate which aspects of auditory speech processing are affected, and which are not, in a stroke patient with dysfunction of the speech motor system. The patient’s spontaneous speech was marked by frequent phonological/articulatory errors, and those errors were caused, at least in part, by motor-level impairments with speech production. We found that the patient showed a normal phonemic categorical boundary when discriminating two nonwords that differ by a minimal pair (e.g., ADA-AGA). However, using the same stimuli, the patient was unable to identify or label the nonword stimuli (using a button-press response). A control task showed that he could identify speech sounds by speaker gender, ruling out a general labeling impairment. These data suggest that the identification (i.e. labeling) of nonword speech sounds may involve the speech motor system, but that the perception of speech sounds (i.e., discrimination) does not require the motor system. This means that motor processes are not causally involved in perception of the speech signal, and suggest that the motor system may be used when other cues (e.g., meaning, context) are not available. PMID:25951749

  20. Speech perception as complex auditory categorization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holt, Lori L.

    2002-05-01

    Despite a long and rich history of categorization research in cognitive psychology, very little work has addressed the issue of complex auditory category formation. This is especially unfortunate because the general underlying cognitive and perceptual mechanisms that guide auditory category formation are of great importance to understanding speech perception. I will discuss a new methodological approach to examining complex auditory category formation that specifically addresses issues relevant to speech perception. This approach utilizes novel nonspeech sound stimuli to gain full experimental control over listeners' history of experience. As such, the course of learning is readily measurable. Results from this methodology indicate that the structure and formation of auditory categories are a function of the statistical input distributions of sound that listeners hear, aspects of the operating characteristics of the auditory system, and characteristics of the perceptual categorization system. These results have important implications for phonetic acquisition and speech perception.

  1. Reflections on mirror neurons and speech perception.

    PubMed

    Lotto, Andrew J; Hickok, Gregory S; Holt, Lori L

    2009-03-01

    The discovery of mirror neurons, a class of neurons that respond when a monkey performs an action and also when the monkey observes others producing the same action, has promoted a renaissance for the Motor Theory (MT) of speech perception. This is because mirror neurons seem to accomplish the same kind of one to one mapping between perception and action that MT theorizes to be the basis of human speech communication. However, this seeming correspondence is superficial, and there are theoretical and empirical reasons to temper enthusiasm about the explanatory role mirror neurons might have for speech perception. In fact, rather than providing support for MT, mirror neurons are actually inconsistent with the central tenets of MT.

  2. Speech-Perception-in-Noise Deficits in Dyslexia

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ziegler, Johannes C.; Pech-Georgel, Catherine; George, Florence; Lorenzi, Christian

    2009-01-01

    Speech perception deficits in developmental dyslexia were investigated in quiet and various noise conditions. Dyslexics exhibited clear speech perception deficits in noise but not in silence. "Place-of-articulation" was more affected than "voicing" or "manner-of-articulation." Speech-perception-in-noise deficits persisted when performance of…

  3. Perception and the temporal properties of speech

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gordon, Peter C.

    1991-11-01

    Four experiments addressing the role of attention in phonetic perception are reported. The first experiment shows that the relative importance of two cues to the voicing distinction changes when subjects must perform an arithmetic distractor task at the same time as identifying a speech stimulus. The voice onset time cue loses phonetic significance when subjects are distracted, while the F0 onset frequency cue does not. The second experiment shows a similar pattern for two cues to the distinction between the vowels /i/ (as in 'beat') and /I/ (as in 'bit'). Together these experiments indicate that careful attention to speech perception is necessary for strong acoustic cues to achieve their full phonetic impact, while weaker acoustic cues achieve their full phonetic impact without close attention. Experiment 3 shows that this pattern is obtained when the distractor task places little demand on verbal short term memory. Experiment 4 provides a large data set for testing formal models of the role of attention in speech perception. Attention is shown to influence the signal to noise ratio in phonetic encoding. This principle is instantiated in a network model in which the role of attention is to reduce noise in the phonetic encoding of acoustic cues. Implications of this work for understanding speech perception and general theories of the role of attention in perception are discussed.

  4. Phonological and Phonetic Biases in Speech Perception

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Key, Michael Parrish

    2012-01-01

    This dissertation investigates how knowledge of phonological generalizations influences speech perception, with a particular focus on evidence that phonological processing is autonomous from (rather than interactive with) auditory processing. A model is proposed in which auditory cue constraints and markedness constraints interact to determine a…

  5. The motor theory of speech perception reviewed

    PubMed Central

    GALANTUCCI, BRUNO; FOWLER, CAROL A.; TURVEY, M. T.

    2009-01-01

    More than 50 years after the appearance of the motor theory of speech perception, it is timely to evaluate its three main claims that (1) speech processing is special, (2) perceiving speech is perceiving gestures, and (3) the motor system is recruited for perceiving speech. We argue that to the extent that it can be evaluated, the first claim is likely false. As for the second claim, we review findings that support it and argue that although each of these findings may be explained by alternative accounts, the claim provides a single coherent account. As for the third claim, we review findings in the literature that support it at different levels of generality and argue that the claim anticipated a theme that has become widespread in cognitive science. PMID:17048719

  6. Mechanisms of phonological inference in speech perception.

    PubMed

    Gaskell, M G; Marslen-Wilson, W D

    1998-04-01

    Cross-modal priming experiments have shown that surface variations in speech are perceptually tolerated as long as they occur in phonologically viable contexts. For example, [symbol: see text] (frayp) gains access to the mental representation of freight when in the context of [symbol: see text] (frayp bearer) because the change occurs in normal speech as a process of place assimilation. The locus of these effects in the perceptual system was examined. Sentences containing surface changes were created that either agreed with or violated assimilation rules. The lexical status of the assimilated word also was manipulated, contrasting lexical and nonlexical accounts. Two phoneme monitoring experiments showed strong effects of phonological viability for words, with weaker effects for nonwords. It is argued that the listener's percept of the form of speech is a product of a phonological inference process that recovers the underlying form of speech. This process can operate on both words and nonwords, although it interacts with the retrieval of lexical information.

  7. A causal test of the motor theory of speech perception: a case of impaired speech production and spared speech perception.

    PubMed

    Stasenko, Alena; Bonn, Cory; Teghipco, Alex; Garcea, Frank E; Sweet, Catherine; Dombovy, Mary; McDonough, Joyce; Mahon, Bradford Z

    2015-01-01

    The debate about the causal role of the motor system in speech perception has been reignited by demonstrations that motor processes are engaged during the processing of speech sounds. Here, we evaluate which aspects of auditory speech processing are affected, and which are not, in a stroke patient with dysfunction of the speech motor system. We found that the patient showed a normal phonemic categorical boundary when discriminating two non-words that differ by a minimal pair (e.g., ADA-AGA). However, using the same stimuli, the patient was unable to identify or label the non-word stimuli (using a button-press response). A control task showed that he could identify speech sounds by speaker gender, ruling out a general labelling impairment. These data suggest that while the motor system is not causally involved in perception of the speech signal, it may be used when other cues (e.g., meaning, context) are not available. PMID:25951749

  8. A causal test of the motor theory of speech perception: a case of impaired speech production and spared speech perception.

    PubMed

    Stasenko, Alena; Bonn, Cory; Teghipco, Alex; Garcea, Frank E; Sweet, Catherine; Dombovy, Mary; McDonough, Joyce; Mahon, Bradford Z

    2015-01-01

    The debate about the causal role of the motor system in speech perception has been reignited by demonstrations that motor processes are engaged during the processing of speech sounds. Here, we evaluate which aspects of auditory speech processing are affected, and which are not, in a stroke patient with dysfunction of the speech motor system. We found that the patient showed a normal phonemic categorical boundary when discriminating two non-words that differ by a minimal pair (e.g., ADA-AGA). However, using the same stimuli, the patient was unable to identify or label the non-word stimuli (using a button-press response). A control task showed that he could identify speech sounds by speaker gender, ruling out a general labelling impairment. These data suggest that while the motor system is not causally involved in perception of the speech signal, it may be used when other cues (e.g., meaning, context) are not available.

  9. Activation of articulatory information in speech perception.

    PubMed

    Yuen, Ivan; Davis, Matthew H; Brysbaert, Marc; Rastle, Kathleen

    2010-01-12

    Emerging neurophysiologic evidence indicates that motor systems are activated during the perception of speech, but whether this activity reflects basic processes underlying speech perception remains a matter of considerable debate. Our contribution to this debate is to report direct behavioral evidence that specific articulatory commands are activated automatically and involuntarily during speech perception. We used electropalatography to measure whether motor information activated from spoken distractors would yield specific distortions on the articulation of printed target syllables. Participants produced target syllables beginning with /k/ or /s/ while listening to the same syllables or to incongruent rhyming syllables beginning with /t/. Tongue-palate contact for target productions was measured during the articulatory closure of /k/ and during the frication of /s/. Results revealed "traces" of the incongruent distractors on target productions, with the incongruent /t/-initial distractors inducing greater alveolar contact in the articulation of /k/ and /s/ than the congruent distractors. Two further experiments established that (i) the nature of this interference effect is dependent specifically on the articulatory properties of the spoken distractors; and (ii) this interference effect is unique to spoken distractors and does not arise when distractors are presented in printed form. Results are discussed in terms of a broader emerging framework concerning the relationship between perception and action, whereby the perception of action entails activation of the motor system. PMID:20080724

  10. Social Expectation Improves Speech Perception in Noise.

    PubMed

    McGowan, Kevin B

    2015-12-01

    Listeners' use of social information during speech perception was investigated by measuring transcription accuracy of Chinese-accented speech in noise while listeners were presented with a congruent Chinese face, an incongruent Caucasian face, or an uninformative silhouette. When listeners were presented with a Chinese face they transcribed more accurately than when presented with the Caucasian face. This difference existed both for listeners with a relatively high level of experience and for listeners with a relatively low level of experience with Chinese-accented English. Overall, these results are inconsistent with a model of social speech perception in which listener bias reduces attendance to the acoustic signal. These results are generally consistent with exemplar models of socially indexed speech perception predicting that activation of a social category will raise base activation levels of socially appropriate episodic traces, but the similar performance of more and less experienced listeners suggests the need for a more nuanced view with a role for both detailed experience and listener stereotypes. PMID:27483742

  11. Localization of Sublexical Speech Perception Components

    PubMed Central

    Turkeltaub, Peter E; Coslett, H. Branch

    2010-01-01

    Models of speech perception are in general agreement with respect to the major cortical regions involved, but lack precision with regard to localization and lateralization of processing units. To refine these models we conducted two Activation Likelihood Estimation (ALE) meta-analyses of the neuroimaging literature on sublexical speech perception. Based on foci reported in 23 fMRI experiments, we identified significant activation likelihoods in left and right superior temporal cortex and the left posterior middle frontal gyrus. Subanalyses examining phonetic and phonological processes revealed only left mid-posterior superior temporal sulcus activation likelihood. A lateralization analysis demonstrated temporal lobe left lateralization in terms of magnitude, extent, and consistency of activity. Experiments requiring explicit attention to phonology drove this lateralization. An ALE analysis of eight fMRI studies on categorical phoneme perception revealed significant activation likelihood in the left supramarginal gyrus and angular gyrus. These results are consistent with a speech processing network in which the bilateral superior temporal cortices perform acoustic analysis of speech and nonspeech auditory stimuli, the left mid-posterior superior temporal sulcus performs phonetic and phonological analysis, and the left inferior parietal lobule is involved in detection of differences between phoneme categories. These results modify current speech perception models in three ways: 1) specifying the most likely locations of dorsal stream processing units, 2) clarifying that phonetic and phonological superior temporal sulcus processing is left lateralized and localized to the mid-posterior portion, and 3) suggesting that both the supramarginal gyrus and angular gyrus may be involved in phoneme discrimination. PMID:20413149

  12. Are there interactive processes in speech perception?

    PubMed

    McClelland, James L; Mirman, Daniel; Holt, Lori L

    2006-08-01

    Lexical information facilitates speech perception, especially when sounds are ambiguous or degraded. The interactive approach to understanding this effect posits that this facilitation is accomplished through bi-directional flow of information, allowing lexical knowledge to influence pre-lexical processes. Alternative autonomous theories posit feed-forward processing with lexical influence restricted to post-perceptual decision processes. We review evidence supporting the prediction of interactive models that lexical influences can affect pre-lexical mechanisms, triggering compensation, adaptation and retuning of phonological processes generally taken to be pre-lexical. We argue that these and other findings point to interactive processing as a fundamental principle for perception of speech and other modalities. PMID:16843037

  13. Speech Perception and Short-Term Memory Deficits in Persistent Developmental Speech Disorder

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kenney, Mary Kay; Barac-Cikoja, Dragana; Finnegan, Kimberly; Jeffries, Neal; Ludlow, Christy L.

    2006-01-01

    Children with developmental speech disorders may have additional deficits in speech perception and/or short-term memory. To determine whether these are only transient developmental delays that can accompany the disorder in childhood or persist as part of the speech disorder, adults with a persistent familial speech disorder were tested on speech…

  14. Lip movements affect infants' audiovisual speech perception.

    PubMed

    Yeung, H Henny; Werker, Janet F

    2013-05-01

    Speech is robustly audiovisual from early in infancy. Here we show that audiovisual speech perception in 4.5-month-old infants is influenced by sensorimotor information related to the lip movements they make while chewing or sucking. Experiment 1 consisted of a classic audiovisual matching procedure, in which two simultaneously displayed talking faces (visual [i] and [u]) were presented with a synchronous vowel sound (audio /i/ or /u/). Infants' looking patterns were selectively biased away from the audiovisual matching face when the infants were producing lip movements similar to those needed to produce the heard vowel. Infants' looking patterns returned to those of a baseline condition (no lip movements, looking longer at the audiovisual matching face) when they were producing lip movements that did not match the heard vowel. Experiment 2 confirmed that these sensorimotor effects interacted with the heard vowel, as looking patterns differed when infants produced these same lip movements while seeing and hearing a talking face producing an unrelated vowel (audio /a/). These findings suggest that the development of speech perception and speech production may be mutually informative.

  15. Perception of speech in noise: neural correlates.

    PubMed

    Song, Judy H; Skoe, Erika; Banai, Karen; Kraus, Nina

    2011-09-01

    The presence of irrelevant auditory information (other talkers, environmental noises) presents a major challenge to listening to speech. The fundamental frequency (F(0)) of the target speaker is thought to provide an important cue for the extraction of the speaker's voice from background noise, but little is known about the relationship between speech-in-noise (SIN) perceptual ability and neural encoding of the F(0). Motivated by recent findings that music and language experience enhance brainstem representation of sound, we examined the hypothesis that brainstem encoding of the F(0) is diminished to a greater degree by background noise in people with poorer perceptual abilities in noise. To this end, we measured speech-evoked auditory brainstem responses to /da/ in quiet and two multitalker babble conditions (two-talker and six-talker) in native English-speaking young adults who ranged in their ability to perceive and recall SIN. Listeners who were poorer performers on a standardized SIN measure demonstrated greater susceptibility to the degradative effects of noise on the neural encoding of the F(0). Particularly diminished was their phase-locked activity to the fundamental frequency in the portion of the syllable known to be most vulnerable to perceptual disruption (i.e., the formant transition period). Our findings suggest that the subcortical representation of the F(0) in noise contributes to the perception of speech in noisy conditions.

  16. Research on Speech Perception. Progress Report No. 12.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pisoni, David B.; And Others

    Summarizing research activities in 1986, this is the twelfth annual report of research on speech perception, analysis, synthesis, and recognition conducted in the Speech Research Laboratory of the Department of Psychology at Indiana University. The report contains the following 23 articles: "Comprehension of Digitally Encoded Natural Speech Using…

  17. Perception of Intersensory Synchrony in Audiovisual Speech: Not that Special

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vroomen, Jean; Stekelenburg, Jeroen J.

    2011-01-01

    Perception of intersensory temporal order is particularly difficult for (continuous) audiovisual speech, as perceivers may find it difficult to notice substantial timing differences between speech sounds and lip movements. Here we tested whether this occurs because audiovisual speech is strongly paired ("unity assumption"). Participants made…

  18. Research on Speech Perception. Progress Report No. 15.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pisoni, David B.

    Summarizing research activities in 1989, this is the fifteenth annual report of research on speech perception, analysis, synthesis, and recognition conducted in the Speech Research Laboratory of the Department of Psychology at Indiana University. The report contains the following 21 articles: "Perceptual Learning of Nonnative Speech Contrasts:…

  19. Cortical Bases of Speech Perception: Evidence from Functional Lesion Studies

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Boatman, Dana

    2004-01-01

    Functional lesion studies have yielded new information about the cortical organization of speech perception in the human brain. We will review a number of recent findings, focusing on studies of speech perception that use the techniques of electrocortical mapping by cortical stimulation and hemispheric anesthetization by intracarotid amobarbital.…

  20. Vocoders and Speech Perception: Uses of Computer-Based Speech Analysis-Synthesis in Stimulus Generation.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tierney, Joseph; Mack, Molly

    1987-01-01

    Stimuli used in research on the perception of the speech signal have often been obtained from simple filtering and distortion of the speech waveform, sometimes accompanied by noise. However, for more complex stimulus generation, the parameters of speech can be manipulated, after analysis and before synthesis, using various types of algorithms to…

  1. Production-perception relationships during speech development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Menard, Lucie; Schwartz, Jean-Luc; Boe, Louis-Jean; Aubin, Jerome

    2005-04-01

    It has been shown that nonuniform growth of the supraglottal cavities, motor control development, and perceptual refinement shape the vowel systems during speech development. In this talk, we propose to investigate the role of perceptual constraints as a guide to the speakers task from birth to adulthood. Simulations with an articulatory-to-acoustic model, acoustic analyses of natural vowels, and results of perceptual tests provide evidence that the production-perception relationships evolve with age. At the perceptual level, results show that (i) linear combination of spectral peaks are good predictors of vowel targets, and (ii) focalization, defined as an acoustic pattern with close neighboring formants [J.-L. Schwartz, L.-J. Boe, N. Vallee, and C. Abry, J. Phonetics 25, 255-286 (1997)], is part of the speech task. At the production level, we propose that (i) frequently produced vowels in the baby's early sound inventory can in part be explained by perceptual templates, (ii) the achievement of these perceptual templates may require adaptive articulatory strategies for the child, compared with the adults, to cope with morphological differences. Results are discussed in the light of a perception for action control theory. [Work supported by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada.

  2. [Speech perception in the first two years].

    PubMed

    Bertoncini, J; Cabrera, L

    2014-10-01

    The development of speech perception relies upon early auditory capacities (i.e. discrimination, segmentation and representation). Infants are able to discriminate most of the phonetic contrasts occurring in natural languages, and at the end of the first year, this universal ability starts to narrow down to the contrasts used in the environmental language. During the second year, this specialization is characterized by the development of comprehension, lexical organization and word production. That process appears now as the result of multiple interactions between perceptual, cognitive and social developing abilities. Distinct factors like word acquisition, sensitivity to the statistical properties of the input, or even the nature of the social interactions, might play a role at one time or another during the acquisition of phonological patterns. Experience with the native language is necessary for phonetic segments to be functional units of perception and for speech sound representations (words, syllables) to be more specified and phonetically organized. This evolution goes on beyond 24 months of age in a learning context characterized from the early stages by the interaction with other developing (linguistic and non-linguistic) capacities.

  3. [Speech perception in the first two years].

    PubMed

    Bertoncini, J; Cabrera, L

    2014-10-01

    The development of speech perception relies upon early auditory capacities (i.e. discrimination, segmentation and representation). Infants are able to discriminate most of the phonetic contrasts occurring in natural languages, and at the end of the first year, this universal ability starts to narrow down to the contrasts used in the environmental language. During the second year, this specialization is characterized by the development of comprehension, lexical organization and word production. That process appears now as the result of multiple interactions between perceptual, cognitive and social developing abilities. Distinct factors like word acquisition, sensitivity to the statistical properties of the input, or even the nature of the social interactions, might play a role at one time or another during the acquisition of phonological patterns. Experience with the native language is necessary for phonetic segments to be functional units of perception and for speech sound representations (words, syllables) to be more specified and phonetically organized. This evolution goes on beyond 24 months of age in a learning context characterized from the early stages by the interaction with other developing (linguistic and non-linguistic) capacities. PMID:25218761

  4. Review of Visual Speech Perception by Hearing and Hearing-Impaired People: Clinical Implications

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Woodhouse, Lynn; Hickson, Louise; Dodd, Barbara

    2009-01-01

    Background: Speech perception is often considered specific to the auditory modality, despite convincing evidence that speech processing is bimodal. The theoretical and clinical roles of speech-reading for speech perception, however, have received little attention in speech-language therapy. Aims: The role of speech-read information for speech…

  5. Brainstem Correlates of Speech-in-Noise Perception in Children

    PubMed Central

    Anderson, Samira; Skoe, Erika; Chandrasekaran, Bharath; Zecker, Steven; Kraus, Nina

    2010-01-01

    Children often have difficulty understanding speech in challenging listening environments. In the absence of peripheral hearing loss, these speech perception difficulties may arise from dysfunction at more central levels in the auditory system, including subcortical structures. We examined brainstem encoding of pitch in a speech syllable in 38 school-age children. In children with poor speech-in-noise perception, we find impaired encoding of the fundamental frequency and the second harmonic, two important cues for pitch perception. Pitch, an important factor in speaker identification, aids the listener in tracking a specific voice from a background of voices. These results suggest that the robustness of subcortical neural encoding of pitch features in time-varying signals is an important factor in determining success with speech perception in noise. PMID:20708671

  6. The neuroanatomical and functional organization of speech perception.

    PubMed

    Scott, Sophie K; Johnsrude, Ingrid S

    2003-02-01

    A striking property of speech perception is its resilience in the face of acoustic variability (among speech sounds produced by different speakers at different times, for example). The robustness of speech perception might, in part, result from multiple, complementary representations of the input, which operate in both acoustic-phonetic feature-based and articulatory-gestural domains. Recent studies of the anatomical and functional organization of the non-human primate auditory cortical system point to multiple, parallel, hierarchically organized processing pathways that involve the temporal, parietal and frontal cortices. Functional neuroimaging evidence indicates that a similar organization might underlie speech perception in humans. These parallel, hierarchical processing 'streams', both within and across hemispheres, might operate on distinguishable, complementary types of representations and subserve complementary types of processing. Two long-opposing views of speech perception have posited a basis either in acoustic feature processing or in gestural motor processing; the view put forward here might help reconcile these positions. PMID:12536133

  7. Perception of synthetic speech produced automatically by rule: Intelligibility of eight text-to-speech systems.

    PubMed

    Greene, Beth G; Logan, John S; Pisoni, David B

    1986-03-01

    We present the results of studies designed to measure the segmental intelligibility of eight text-to-speech systems and a natural speech control, using the Modified Rhyme Test (MRT). Results indicated that the voices tested could be grouped into four categories: natural speech, high-quality synthetic speech, moderate-quality synthetic speech, and low-quality synthetic speech. The overall performance of the best synthesis system, DECtalk-Paul, was equivalent to natural speech only in terms of performance on initial consonants. The findings are discussed in terms of recent work investigating the perception of synthetic speech under more severe conditions. Suggestions for future research on improving the quality of synthetic speech are also considered. PMID:23225916

  8. Relationship between Speech Production and Perception in People Who Stutter

    PubMed Central

    Lu, Chunming; Long, Yuhang; Zheng, Lifen; Shi, Guang; Liu, Li; Ding, Guosheng; Howell, Peter

    2016-01-01

    Speech production difficulties are apparent in people who stutter (PWS). PWS also have difficulties in speech perception compared to controls. It is unclear whether the speech perception difficulties in PWS are independent of, or related to, their speech production difficulties. To investigate this issue, functional MRI data were collected on 13 PWS and 13 controls whilst the participants performed a speech production task and a speech perception task. PWS performed poorer than controls in the perception task and the poorer performance was associated with a functional activity difference in the left anterior insula (part of the speech motor area) compared to controls. PWS also showed a functional activity difference in this and the surrounding area [left inferior frontal cortex (IFC)/anterior insula] in the production task compared to controls. Conjunction analysis showed that the functional activity differences between PWS and controls in the left IFC/anterior insula coincided across the perception and production tasks. Furthermore, Granger Causality Analysis on the resting-state fMRI data of the participants showed that the causal connection from the left IFC/anterior insula to an area in the left primary auditory cortex (Heschl’s gyrus) differed significantly between PWS and controls. The strength of this connection correlated significantly with performance in the perception task. These results suggest that speech perception difficulties in PWS are associated with anomalous functional activity in the speech motor area, and the altered functional connectivity from this area to the auditory area plays a role in the speech perception difficulties of PWS. PMID:27242487

  9. Relationship between Speech Production and Perception in People Who Stutter.

    PubMed

    Lu, Chunming; Long, Yuhang; Zheng, Lifen; Shi, Guang; Liu, Li; Ding, Guosheng; Howell, Peter

    2016-01-01

    Speech production difficulties are apparent in people who stutter (PWS). PWS also have difficulties in speech perception compared to controls. It is unclear whether the speech perception difficulties in PWS are independent of, or related to, their speech production difficulties. To investigate this issue, functional MRI data were collected on 13 PWS and 13 controls whilst the participants performed a speech production task and a speech perception task. PWS performed poorer than controls in the perception task and the poorer performance was associated with a functional activity difference in the left anterior insula (part of the speech motor area) compared to controls. PWS also showed a functional activity difference in this and the surrounding area [left inferior frontal cortex (IFC)/anterior insula] in the production task compared to controls. Conjunction analysis showed that the functional activity differences between PWS and controls in the left IFC/anterior insula coincided across the perception and production tasks. Furthermore, Granger Causality Analysis on the resting-state fMRI data of the participants showed that the causal connection from the left IFC/anterior insula to an area in the left primary auditory cortex (Heschl's gyrus) differed significantly between PWS and controls. The strength of this connection correlated significantly with performance in the perception task. These results suggest that speech perception difficulties in PWS are associated with anomalous functional activity in the speech motor area, and the altered functional connectivity from this area to the auditory area plays a role in the speech perception difficulties of PWS. PMID:27242487

  10. Audiovisual Temporal Recalibration for Speech in Synchrony Perception and Speech Identification

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Asakawa, Kaori; Tanaka, Akihiro; Imai, Hisato

    We investigated whether audiovisual synchrony perception for speech could change after observation of the audiovisual temporal mismatch. Previous studies have revealed that audiovisual synchrony perception is re-calibrated after exposure to a constant timing difference between auditory and visual signals in non-speech. In the present study, we examined whether this audiovisual temporal recalibration occurs at the perceptual level even for speech (monosyllables). In Experiment 1, participants performed an audiovisual simultaneity judgment task (i.e., a direct measurement of the audiovisual synchrony perception) in terms of the speech signal after observation of the speech stimuli which had a constant audiovisual lag. The results showed that the “simultaneous” responses (i.e., proportion of responses for which participants judged the auditory and visual stimuli to be synchronous) at least partly depended on exposure lag. In Experiment 2, we adopted the McGurk identification task (i.e., an indirect measurement of the audiovisual synchrony perception) to exclude the possibility that this modulation of synchrony perception was solely attributable to the response strategy using stimuli identical to those of Experiment 1. The characteristics of the McGurk effect reported by participants depended on exposure lag. Thus, it was shown that audiovisual synchrony perception for speech could be modulated following exposure to constant lag both in direct and indirect measurement. Our results suggest that temporal recalibration occurs not only in non-speech signals but also in monosyllabic speech at the perceptual level.

  11. Critical periods in speech perception: new directions.

    PubMed

    Werker, Janet F; Hensch, Takao K

    2015-01-01

    A continuing debate in language acquisition research is whether there are critical periods (CPs) in development during which the system is most responsive to environmental input. Recent advances in neurobiology provide a mechanistic explanation of CPs, with the balance between excitatory and inhibitory processes establishing the onset and molecular brakes establishing the offset of windows of plasticity. In this article, we review the literature on human speech perception development within the context of this CP model, highlighting research that reveals the interplay of maturational and experiential influences at key junctures in development and presenting paradigmatic examples testing CP models in human subjects. We conclude with a discussion of how a mechanistic understanding of CP processes changes the nature of the debate: The question no longer is, "Are there CPs?" but rather what processes open them, keep them open, close them, and allow them to be reopened.

  12. Sound frequency affects speech emotion perception: results from congenital amusia

    PubMed Central

    Lolli, Sydney L.; Lewenstein, Ari D.; Basurto, Julian; Winnik, Sean; Loui, Psyche

    2015-01-01

    Congenital amusics, or “tone-deaf” individuals, show difficulty in perceiving and producing small pitch differences. While amusia has marked effects on music perception, its impact on speech perception is less clear. Here we test the hypothesis that individual differences in pitch perception affect judgment of emotion in speech, by applying low-pass filters to spoken statements of emotional speech. A norming study was first conducted on Mechanical Turk to ensure that the intended emotions from the Macquarie Battery for Evaluation of Prosody were reliably identifiable by US English speakers. The most reliably identified emotional speech samples were used in Experiment 1, in which subjects performed a psychophysical pitch discrimination task, and an emotion identification task under low-pass and unfiltered speech conditions. Results showed a significant correlation between pitch-discrimination threshold and emotion identification accuracy for low-pass filtered speech, with amusics (defined here as those with a pitch discrimination threshold >16 Hz) performing worse than controls. This relationship with pitch discrimination was not seen in unfiltered speech conditions. Given the dissociation between low-pass filtered and unfiltered speech conditions, we inferred that amusics may be compensating for poorer pitch perception by using speech cues that are filtered out in this manipulation. To assess this potential compensation, Experiment 2 was conducted using high-pass filtered speech samples intended to isolate non-pitch cues. No significant correlation was found between pitch discrimination and emotion identification accuracy for high-pass filtered speech. Results from these experiments suggest an influence of low frequency information in identifying emotional content of speech. PMID:26441718

  13. Sound frequency affects speech emotion perception: results from congenital amusia.

    PubMed

    Lolli, Sydney L; Lewenstein, Ari D; Basurto, Julian; Winnik, Sean; Loui, Psyche

    2015-01-01

    Congenital amusics, or "tone-deaf" individuals, show difficulty in perceiving and producing small pitch differences. While amusia has marked effects on music perception, its impact on speech perception is less clear. Here we test the hypothesis that individual differences in pitch perception affect judgment of emotion in speech, by applying low-pass filters to spoken statements of emotional speech. A norming study was first conducted on Mechanical Turk to ensure that the intended emotions from the Macquarie Battery for Evaluation of Prosody were reliably identifiable by US English speakers. The most reliably identified emotional speech samples were used in Experiment 1, in which subjects performed a psychophysical pitch discrimination task, and an emotion identification task under low-pass and unfiltered speech conditions. Results showed a significant correlation between pitch-discrimination threshold and emotion identification accuracy for low-pass filtered speech, with amusics (defined here as those with a pitch discrimination threshold >16 Hz) performing worse than controls. This relationship with pitch discrimination was not seen in unfiltered speech conditions. Given the dissociation between low-pass filtered and unfiltered speech conditions, we inferred that amusics may be compensating for poorer pitch perception by using speech cues that are filtered out in this manipulation. To assess this potential compensation, Experiment 2 was conducted using high-pass filtered speech samples intended to isolate non-pitch cues. No significant correlation was found between pitch discrimination and emotion identification accuracy for high-pass filtered speech. Results from these experiments suggest an influence of low frequency information in identifying emotional content of speech. PMID:26441718

  14. Beat Gestures Modulate Auditory Integration in Speech Perception

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Biau, Emmanuel; Soto-Faraco, Salvador

    2013-01-01

    Spontaneous beat gestures are an integral part of the paralinguistic context during face-to-face conversations. Here we investigated the time course of beat-speech integration in speech perception by measuring ERPs evoked by words pronounced with or without an accompanying beat gesture, while participants watched a spoken discourse. Words…

  15. Cognitive Control Factors in Speech Perception at 11 Months

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Conboy, Barbara T.; Sommerville, Jessica A.; Kuhl, Patricia K.

    2008-01-01

    The development of speech perception during the 1st year reflects increasing attunement to native language features, but the mechanisms underlying this development are not completely understood. One previous study linked reductions in nonnative speech discrimination to performance on nonlinguistic tasks, whereas other studies have shown…

  16. Audio-Visual Speech Perception: A Developmental ERP Investigation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Knowland, Victoria C. P.; Mercure, Evelyne; Karmiloff-Smith, Annette; Dick, Fred; Thomas, Michael S. C.

    2014-01-01

    Being able to see a talking face confers a considerable advantage for speech perception in adulthood. However, behavioural data currently suggest that children fail to make full use of these available visual speech cues until age 8 or 9. This is particularly surprising given the potential utility of multiple informational cues during language…

  17. ESL Students' Perceptions of Formal and Informal Speech.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Meiske, Sally

    A study investigating the perceptions of students of English as a second language (ESL) regarding formal and informal speech in English also looked at their implications for teaching ESL. It was proposed that because the manner of speech a teacher uses may influence the students' ability to acquire the material presented, it may be helpful to…

  18. Individual Differences in Premotor and Motor Recruitment during Speech Perception

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Szenkovits, Gayaneh; Peelle, Jonathan E.; Norris, Dennis; Davis, Matthew H.

    2012-01-01

    Although activity in premotor and motor cortices is commonly observed in neuroimaging studies of spoken language processing, the degree to which this activity is an obligatory part of everyday speech comprehension remains unclear. We hypothesised that rather than being a unitary phenomenon, the neural response to speech perception in motor regions…

  19. Speech Perception as a Cognitive Process: The Interactive Activation Model.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Elman, Jeffrey L.; McClelland, James L.

    Research efforts to model speech perception in terms of a processing system in which knowledge and processing are distributed over large numbers of highly interactive--but computationally primative--elements are described in this report. After discussing the properties of speech that demand a parallel interactive processing system, the report…

  20. Precategorical Acoustic Storage and the Perception of Speech

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Frankish, Clive

    2008-01-01

    Theoretical accounts of both speech perception and of short term memory must consider the extent to which perceptual representations of speech sounds might survive in relatively unprocessed form. This paper describes a novel version of the serial recall task that can be used to explore this area of shared interest. In immediate recall of digit…

  1. Research on Speech Perception. Progress Report No. 14.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pisoni, David B.; And Others

    Summarizing research activities in 1988, this is the fourteenth annual report of research on speech perception, analysis, synthesis, and recognition conducted in the Speech Research Laboratory of the Department of Psychology at Indiana University. The report includes extended manuscripts, short reports, and progress reports. The report contains…

  2. Cognitive control factors in speech perception at 11 months

    PubMed Central

    Conboy, Barbara T.; Sommerville, Jessica A.; Kuhl, Patricia K.

    2008-01-01

    The development of speech perception during the first year reflects increasing attunement to native language features, but the mechanisms underlying this development are not completely understood. One previous study linked reductions in nonnative speech discrimination to performance on nonlinguistic tasks, while other studies have shown associations between speech perception and vocabulary growth. The present study examined relationships among these abilities in 11-month-old infants using a conditioned head turn test of native and nonnative speech sound discrimination, nonlinguistic object retrieval tasks requiring attention and inhibitory control, and the MacArthur-Bates Communicative Development Inventory (CDI). Native speech discrimination was positively linked to receptive vocabulary size, but not to the cognitive control tasks, whereas nonnative speech discrimination was negatively linked to cognitive control scores but not to vocabulary size. Speech discrimination, vocabulary size, and cognitive control scores were not associated with more general cognitive measures. These results suggest specific relationships between domain-general inhibitory control processes and the ability to ignore variation in speech that is irrelevant to the native language, and between the development of native language speech perception and vocabulary. PMID:18793082

  3. Cognitive control factors in speech perception at 11 months.

    PubMed

    Conboy, Barbara T; Sommerville, Jessica A; Kuhl, Patricia K

    2008-09-01

    The development of speech perception during the 1st year reflects increasing attunement to native language features, but the mechanisms underlying this development are not completely understood. One previous study linked reductions in nonnative speech discrimination to performance on nonlinguistic tasks, whereas other studies have shown associations between speech perception and vocabulary growth. The present study examined relationships among these abilities in 11-month-old infants using a conditioned head-turn test of native and nonnative speech sound discrimination, nonlinguistic object-retrieval tasks requiring attention and inhibitory control, and the MacArthur-Bates Communicative Development Inventory (L. Fenson et al., 1993). Native speech discrimination was positively linked to receptive vocabulary size but not to the cognitive control tasks, whereas nonnative speech discrimination was negatively linked to cognitive control scores but not to vocabulary size. Speech discrimination, vocabulary size, and cognitive control scores were not associated with more general cognitive measures. These results suggest specific relationships between domain-general inhibitory control processes and the ability to ignore variation in speech that is irrelevant to the native language and between the development of native language speech perception and vocabulary.

  4. Audiovisual speech perception development at varying levels of perceptual processing.

    PubMed

    Lalonde, Kaylah; Holt, Rachael Frush

    2016-04-01

    This study used the auditory evaluation framework [Erber (1982). Auditory Training (Alexander Graham Bell Association, Washington, DC)] to characterize the influence of visual speech on audiovisual (AV) speech perception in adults and children at multiple levels of perceptual processing. Six- to eight-year-old children and adults completed auditory and AV speech perception tasks at three levels of perceptual processing (detection, discrimination, and recognition). The tasks differed in the level of perceptual processing required to complete them. Adults and children demonstrated visual speech influence at all levels of perceptual processing. Whereas children demonstrated the same visual speech influence at each level of perceptual processing, adults demonstrated greater visual speech influence on tasks requiring higher levels of perceptual processing. These results support previous research demonstrating multiple mechanisms of AV speech processing (general perceptual and speech-specific mechanisms) with independent maturational time courses. The results suggest that adults rely on both general perceptual mechanisms that apply to all levels of perceptual processing and speech-specific mechanisms that apply when making phonetic decisions and/or accessing the lexicon. Six- to eight-year-old children seem to rely only on general perceptual mechanisms across levels. As expected, developmental differences in AV benefit on this and other recognition tasks likely reflect immature speech-specific mechanisms and phonetic processing in children. PMID:27106318

  5. Audiovisual speech perception development at varying levels of perceptual processing.

    PubMed

    Lalonde, Kaylah; Holt, Rachael Frush

    2016-04-01

    This study used the auditory evaluation framework [Erber (1982). Auditory Training (Alexander Graham Bell Association, Washington, DC)] to characterize the influence of visual speech on audiovisual (AV) speech perception in adults and children at multiple levels of perceptual processing. Six- to eight-year-old children and adults completed auditory and AV speech perception tasks at three levels of perceptual processing (detection, discrimination, and recognition). The tasks differed in the level of perceptual processing required to complete them. Adults and children demonstrated visual speech influence at all levels of perceptual processing. Whereas children demonstrated the same visual speech influence at each level of perceptual processing, adults demonstrated greater visual speech influence on tasks requiring higher levels of perceptual processing. These results support previous research demonstrating multiple mechanisms of AV speech processing (general perceptual and speech-specific mechanisms) with independent maturational time courses. The results suggest that adults rely on both general perceptual mechanisms that apply to all levels of perceptual processing and speech-specific mechanisms that apply when making phonetic decisions and/or accessing the lexicon. Six- to eight-year-old children seem to rely only on general perceptual mechanisms across levels. As expected, developmental differences in AV benefit on this and other recognition tasks likely reflect immature speech-specific mechanisms and phonetic processing in children.

  6. Plasticity in the human speech motor system drives changes in speech perception.

    PubMed

    Lametti, Daniel R; Rochet-Capellan, Amélie; Neufeld, Emily; Shiller, Douglas M; Ostry, David J

    2014-07-30

    Recent studies of human speech motor learning suggest that learning is accompanied by changes in auditory perception. But what drives the perceptual change? Is it a consequence of changes in the motor system? Or is it a result of sensory inflow during learning? Here, subjects participated in a speech motor-learning task involving adaptation to altered auditory feedback and they were subsequently tested for perceptual change. In two separate experiments, involving two different auditory perceptual continua, we show that changes in the speech motor system that accompany learning drive changes in auditory speech perception. Specifically, we obtained changes in speech perception when adaptation to altered auditory feedback led to speech production that fell into the phonetic range of the speech perceptual tests. However, a similar change in perception was not observed when the auditory feedback that subjects' received during learning fell into the phonetic range of the perceptual tests. This indicates that the central motor outflow associated with vocal sensorimotor adaptation drives changes to the perceptual classification of speech sounds.

  7. Exploring the Role of Brain Oscillations in Speech Perception in Noise: Intelligibility of Isochronously Retimed Speech.

    PubMed

    Aubanel, Vincent; Davis, Chris; Kim, Jeesun

    2016-01-01

    A growing body of evidence shows that brain oscillations track speech. This mechanism is thought to maximize processing efficiency by allocating resources to important speech information, effectively parsing speech into units of appropriate granularity for further decoding. However, some aspects of this mechanism remain unclear. First, while periodicity is an intrinsic property of this physiological mechanism, speech is only quasi-periodic, so it is not clear whether periodicity would present an advantage in processing. Second, it is still a matter of debate which aspect of speech triggers or maintains cortical entrainment, from bottom-up cues such as fluctuations of the amplitude envelope of speech to higher level linguistic cues such as syntactic structure. We present data from a behavioral experiment assessing the effect of isochronous retiming of speech on speech perception in noise. Two types of anchor points were defined for retiming speech, namely syllable onsets and amplitude envelope peaks. For each anchor point type, retiming was implemented at two hierarchical levels, a slow time scale around 2.5 Hz and a fast time scale around 4 Hz. Results show that while any temporal distortion resulted in reduced speech intelligibility, isochronous speech anchored to P-centers (approximated by stressed syllable vowel onsets) was significantly more intelligible than a matched anisochronous retiming, suggesting a facilitative role of periodicity defined on linguistically motivated units in processing speech in noise. PMID:27630552

  8. Exploring the Role of Brain Oscillations in Speech Perception in Noise: Intelligibility of Isochronously Retimed Speech

    PubMed Central

    Aubanel, Vincent; Davis, Chris; Kim, Jeesun

    2016-01-01

    A growing body of evidence shows that brain oscillations track speech. This mechanism is thought to maximize processing efficiency by allocating resources to important speech information, effectively parsing speech into units of appropriate granularity for further decoding. However, some aspects of this mechanism remain unclear. First, while periodicity is an intrinsic property of this physiological mechanism, speech is only quasi-periodic, so it is not clear whether periodicity would present an advantage in processing. Second, it is still a matter of debate which aspect of speech triggers or maintains cortical entrainment, from bottom-up cues such as fluctuations of the amplitude envelope of speech to higher level linguistic cues such as syntactic structure. We present data from a behavioral experiment assessing the effect of isochronous retiming of speech on speech perception in noise. Two types of anchor points were defined for retiming speech, namely syllable onsets and amplitude envelope peaks. For each anchor point type, retiming was implemented at two hierarchical levels, a slow time scale around 2.5 Hz and a fast time scale around 4 Hz. Results show that while any temporal distortion resulted in reduced speech intelligibility, isochronous speech anchored to P-centers (approximated by stressed syllable vowel onsets) was significantly more intelligible than a matched anisochronous retiming, suggesting a facilitative role of periodicity defined on linguistically motivated units in processing speech in noise.

  9. Exploring the Role of Brain Oscillations in Speech Perception in Noise: Intelligibility of Isochronously Retimed Speech

    PubMed Central

    Aubanel, Vincent; Davis, Chris; Kim, Jeesun

    2016-01-01

    A growing body of evidence shows that brain oscillations track speech. This mechanism is thought to maximize processing efficiency by allocating resources to important speech information, effectively parsing speech into units of appropriate granularity for further decoding. However, some aspects of this mechanism remain unclear. First, while periodicity is an intrinsic property of this physiological mechanism, speech is only quasi-periodic, so it is not clear whether periodicity would present an advantage in processing. Second, it is still a matter of debate which aspect of speech triggers or maintains cortical entrainment, from bottom-up cues such as fluctuations of the amplitude envelope of speech to higher level linguistic cues such as syntactic structure. We present data from a behavioral experiment assessing the effect of isochronous retiming of speech on speech perception in noise. Two types of anchor points were defined for retiming speech, namely syllable onsets and amplitude envelope peaks. For each anchor point type, retiming was implemented at two hierarchical levels, a slow time scale around 2.5 Hz and a fast time scale around 4 Hz. Results show that while any temporal distortion resulted in reduced speech intelligibility, isochronous speech anchored to P-centers (approximated by stressed syllable vowel onsets) was significantly more intelligible than a matched anisochronous retiming, suggesting a facilitative role of periodicity defined on linguistically motivated units in processing speech in noise. PMID:27630552

  10. SPATS: Speech Perception Assessment and Training System

    PubMed Central

    Miller, James D.; Watson, Charles S.; Kewley-Port, Diane; Sillings, Roy; Mills, William B.; Burleson, Deborah F.

    2009-01-01

    A software system, SPATS (patent pending), that tests and trains important bottom-up and combined bottom-up/top-down speech-perception skills is described. Bottom-up skills are the abilities to identify the constituents of syllables: onsets, nuclei, and codas in quiet and noise as produced by eight talkers. Top-down skills are the abilities to use knowledge of linguistic context to identify words in spoken sentences. The sentence module in SPATS emphasizes combined bottom-up/top-down abilities in perceiving sentences in noise. The word-initial onsets, stressed nuclei, and word-final codas are ranked in importance and grouped into subsets based on their importance. Testing utilizes random presentation of all the items included in a subset. Training in Quiet (SNR = 40 dB) or in Noise (SNR = 5 dB), is adaptively focused on individual listener’s learnable items of intermediate difficulty. Alternatively, SNR-adaption training uses Kaernbach’s algorithm to find the SNR required for a target percent correct. The unique sentence module trains the combination of bottom-up (hearing) with top-down (use of linguistic context) abilities to identify words in meaningful sentences in noise. Scoring in the sentence module is objective and automatic. PMID:20228894

  11. Production and perception of clear speech in Croatian and English

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smiljanić, Rajka; Bradlow, Ann R.

    2005-09-01

    Previous research has established that naturally produced English clear speech is more intelligible than English conversational speech. The major goal of this paper was to establish the presence of the clear speech effect in production and perception of a language other than English, namely Croatian. A systematic investigation of the conversational-to-clear speech transformations across languages with different phonological properties (e.g., large versus small vowel inventory) can provide a window into the interaction of general auditory-perceptual and phonological, structural factors that contribute to the high intelligibility of clear speech. The results of this study showed that naturally produced clear speech is a distinct, listener-oriented, intelligibility-enhancing mode of speech production in both languages. Furthermore, the acoustic-phonetic features of the conversational-to-clear speech transformation revealed cross-language similarities in clear speech production strategies. In both languages, talkers exhibited a decrease in speaking rate and an increase in pitch range, as well as an expansion of the vowel space. Notably, the findings of this study showed equivalent vowel space expansion in English and Croatian clear speech, despite the difference in vowel inventory size across the two languages, suggesting that the extent of vowel contrast enhancement in hyperarticulated clear speech is independent of vowel inventory size.

  12. Audibility and visual biasing in speech perception

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Clement, Bart Richard

    Although speech perception has been considered a predominantly auditory phenomenon, large benefits from vision in degraded acoustic conditions suggest integration of audition and vision. More direct evidence of this comes from studies of audiovisual disparity that demonstrate vision can bias and even dominate perception (McGurk & MacDonald, 1976). It has been observed that hearing-impaired listeners demonstrate more visual biasing than normally hearing listeners (Walden et al., 1990). It is argued here that stimulus audibility must be equated across groups before true differences can be established. In the present investigation, effects of visual biasing on perception were examined as audibility was degraded for 12 young normally hearing listeners. Biasing was determined by quantifying the degree to which listener identification functions for a single synthetic auditory /ba-da-ga/ continuum changed across two conditions: (1)an auditory-only listening condition; and (2)an auditory-visual condition in which every item of the continuum was synchronized with visual articulations of the consonant-vowel (CV) tokens /ba/ and /ga/, as spoken by each of two talkers. Audibility was altered by presenting the conditions in quiet and in noise at each of three signal-to- noise (S/N) ratios. For the visual-/ba/ context, large effects of audibility were found. As audibility decreased, visual biasing increased. A large talker effect also was found, with one talker eliciting more biasing than the other. An independent lipreading measure demonstrated that this talker was more visually intelligible than the other. For the visual-/ga/ context, audibility and talker effects were less robust, possibly obscured by strong listener effects, which were characterized by marked differences in perceptual processing patterns among participants. Some demonstrated substantial biasing whereas others demonstrated little, indicating a strong reliance on audition even in severely degraded acoustic

  13. Spanish Native-Speaker Perception of Accentedness in Learner Speech

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Moranski, Kara

    2012-01-01

    Building upon current research in native-speaker (NS) perception of L2 learner phonology (Zielinski, 2008; Derwing & Munro, 2009), the present investigation analyzed multiple dimensions of NS speech perception in order to achieve a more complete understanding of the specific linguistic elements and attitudinal variables that contribute to…

  14. Children's perception of their synthetically corrected speech production.

    PubMed

    Strömbergsson, Sofia; Wengelin, Asa; House, David

    2014-06-01

    We explore children's perception of their own speech - in its online form, in its recorded form, and in synthetically modified forms. Children with phonological disorder (PD) and children with typical speech and language development (TD) performed tasks of evaluating accuracy of the different types of speech stimuli, either immediately after having produced the utterance or after a delay. In addition, they performed a task designed to assess their ability to detect synthetic modification. Both groups showed high performance in tasks involving evaluation of other children's speech, whereas in tasks of evaluating one's own speech, the children with PD were less accurate than their TD peers. The children with PD were less sensitive to misproductions in immediate conjunction with their production of an utterance, and more accurate after a delay. Within-category modification often passed undetected, indicating a satisfactory quality of the generated speech. Potential clinical benefits of using corrective re-synthesis are discussed.

  15. Modeling Interactions between Speech Production and Perception: Speech Error Detection at Semantic and Phonological Levels and the Inner Speech Loop

    PubMed Central

    Kröger, Bernd J.; Crawford, Eric; Bekolay, Trevor; Eliasmith, Chris

    2016-01-01

    Production and comprehension of speech are closely interwoven. For example, the ability to detect an error in one's own speech, halt speech production, and finally correct the error can be explained by assuming an inner speech loop which continuously compares the word representations induced by production to those induced by perception at various cognitive levels (e.g., conceptual, word, or phonological levels). Because spontaneous speech errors are relatively rare, a picture naming and halt paradigm can be used to evoke them. In this paradigm, picture presentation (target word initiation) is followed by an auditory stop signal (distractor word) for halting speech production. The current study seeks to understand the neural mechanisms governing self-detection of speech errors by developing a biologically inspired neural model of the inner speech loop. The neural model is based on the Neural Engineering Framework (NEF) and consists of a network of about 500,000 spiking neurons. In the first experiment we induce simulated speech errors semantically and phonologically. In the second experiment, we simulate a picture naming and halt task. Target-distractor word pairs were balanced with respect to variation of phonological and semantic similarity. The results of the first experiment show that speech errors are successfully detected by a monitoring component in the inner speech loop. The results of the second experiment show that the model correctly reproduces human behavioral data on the picture naming and halt task. In particular, the halting rate in the production of target words was lower for phonologically similar words than for semantically similar or fully dissimilar distractor words. We thus conclude that the neural architecture proposed here to model the inner speech loop reflects important interactions in production and perception at phonological and semantic levels. PMID:27303287

  16. Speech perception at the interface of neurobiology and linguistics.

    PubMed

    Poeppel, David; Idsardi, William J; van Wassenhove, Virginie

    2008-03-12

    Speech perception consists of a set of computations that take continuously varying acoustic waveforms as input and generate discrete representations that make contact with the lexical representations stored in long-term memory as output. Because the perceptual objects that are recognized by the speech perception enter into subsequent linguistic computation, the format that is used for lexical representation and processing fundamentally constrains the speech perceptual processes. Consequently, theories of speech perception must, at some level, be tightly linked to theories of lexical representation. Minimally, speech perception must yield representations that smoothly and rapidly interface with stored lexical items. Adopting the perspective of Marr, we argue and provide neurobiological and psychophysical evidence for the following research programme. First, at the implementational level, speech perception is a multi-time resolution process, with perceptual analyses occurring concurrently on at least two time scales (approx. 20-80 ms, approx. 150-300 ms), commensurate with (sub)segmental and syllabic analyses, respectively. Second, at the algorithmic level, we suggest that perception proceeds on the basis of internal forward models, or uses an 'analysis-by-synthesis' approach. Third, at the computational level (in the sense of Marr), the theory of lexical representation that we adopt is principally informed by phonological research and assumes that words are represented in the mental lexicon in terms of sequences of discrete segments composed of distinctive features. One important goal of the research programme is to develop linking hypotheses between putative neurobiological primitives (e.g. temporal primitives) and those primitives derived from linguistic inquiry, to arrive ultimately at a biologically sensible and theoretically satisfying model of representation and computation in speech.

  17. Perception of Speech Reflects Optimal Use of Probabilistic Speech Cues

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Clayards, Meghan; Tanenhaus, Michael K.; Aslin, Richard N.; Jacobs, Robert A.

    2008-01-01

    Listeners are exquisitely sensitive to fine-grained acoustic detail within phonetic categories for sounds and words. Here we show that this sensitivity is optimal given the probabilistic nature of speech cues. We manipulated the probability distribution of one probabilistic cue, voice onset time (VOT), which differentiates word initial labial…

  18. Categorical perception of speech by children with specific language impairments.

    PubMed

    Coady, Jeffry A; Kluender, Keith R; Evans, Julia L

    2005-08-01

    Previous research has suggested that children with specific language impairments (SLI) have deficits in basic speech perception abilities, and this may be an underlying source of their linguistic deficits. These findings have come from studies in which perception of synthetic versions of meaningless syllables was typically examined in tasks with high memory demands. In this study, 20 children with SLI (mean age = 9 years, 3 months) and 20 age-matched peers participated in a categorical perception task. Children identified and discriminated digitally edited versions of naturally spoken real words in tasks designed to minimize memory requirements. Both groups exhibited all hallmarks of categorical perception: a sharp labeling function, discontinuous discrimination performance, and discrimination predicted from identification. There were no group differences for identification data, but children with SLI showed lower peak discrimination values. Children with SLI still discriminated phonemically contrastive pairs at levels significantly better than chance, with discrimination of same-label pairs at chance. These data suggest that children with SLI perceive natural speech tokens comparably to age-matched controls when listening to words under conditions that minimize memory load. Further, poor performance on speech perception tasks may not be due to a speech perception deficit, but rather to a consequence of task demands. PMID:16378484

  19. Vision of tongue movements bias auditory speech perception.

    PubMed

    D'Ausilio, Alessandro; Bartoli, Eleonora; Maffongelli, Laura; Berry, Jeffrey James; Fadiga, Luciano

    2014-10-01

    Audiovisual speech perception is likely based on the association between auditory and visual information into stable audiovisual maps. Conflicting audiovisual inputs generate perceptual illusions such as the McGurk effect. Audiovisual mismatch effects could be either driven by the detection of violations in the standard audiovisual statistics or via the sensorimotor reconstruction of the distal articulatory event that generated the audiovisual ambiguity. In order to disambiguate between the two hypotheses we exploit the fact that the tongue is hidden to vision. For this reason, tongue movement encoding can solely be learned via speech production but not via others׳ speech perception alone. Here we asked participants to identify speech sounds while matching or mismatching visual representations of tongue movements which were shown. Vision of congruent tongue movements facilitated auditory speech identification with respect to incongruent trials. This result suggests that direct visual experience of an articulator movement is not necessary for the generation of audiovisual mismatch effects. Furthermore, we suggest that audiovisual integration in speech may benefit from speech production learning.

  20. Role of articulation in speech perception: clues from production.

    PubMed

    Lindblom, B

    1996-03-01

    The relative roles played by signal properties and nonsignal information in speech perception are first examined. The evidence strongly suggests that phonetic percepts are never knowledge-innocent records of the raw signal. That conclusion is drawn not only about "higher" levels of language processing, but is seen to apply also to the perception of elementary phonetic stimuli. A review of a broad range of facts about production highlights the fact that speech production is adaptively organized. That circumstance suggests that the signal does not encode articulatory or acoustic/auditory invariants, but plays the role of supplementing the multimodal information already in place in the listener's speech processing system. It is accordingly proposed that phonetic signals are not invariants wrapped in "noise," but are products of listener-dependent adaptations that transform speech patterns in principled and, therefore, interpretable ways. Do listeners form speech percepts by way of intermediate articulatory representations? There seem to be strong both theoretical and methodological reasons to doubt that they do.

  1. Investigating Speech Perception in Children with Dyslexia: Is There Evidence of a Consistent Deficit in Individuals?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Messaoud-Galusi, Souhila; Hazan, Valerie; Rosen, Stuart

    2011-01-01

    Purpose: The claim that speech perception abilities are impaired in dyslexia was investigated in a group of 62 children with dyslexia and 51 average readers matched in age. Method: To test whether there was robust evidence of speech perception deficits in children with dyslexia, speech perception in noise and quiet was measured using 8 different…

  2. From speech perception to word learning and beyond

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Werker, Janet F.

    2002-05-01

    From his undergraduate days at Brown, Peter Jusczyk revolutionized our understanding of the link between infant speech perception and language use. This talk reviews how Jusczyk's work influenced my research in three important domains. The talk begins with a discussion of Jusczyk's early work on infant speech perception, and illustrates how that led to my initial work on infant cross-language perception. This is followed by a discussion of Jusczyk's work on sensitivity to probabilistic information and how this influenced the more recent work [Maye, Werker, and Gerken] on the mechanisms underlying changes in phonetic perception. The third research section briefly describes how Jusczyk's work on word segmentation influenced ongoing research in the laboratory on early word learning. In the final few minutes of the talk, an attempt will be made to give a sense of the enormous influence Peter Jusczyk's work had, and continues to have, on our field.

  3. Do temporal processes underlie left hemisphere dominance in speech perception?

    PubMed Central

    Scott, Sophie K; McGettigan, Carolyn

    2014-01-01

    It is not unusual to find it stated as a fact that the left hemisphere is specialized for the processing of rapid, or temporal aspects of sound, and that the dominance of the left hemisphere in the perception of speech can be a consequence of this specialisation. In this review we explore the history of this claim and assess the weight of this assumption. We will demonstrate that instead of a supposed sensitivity of the left temporal lobe for the acoustic properties of speech, it is the right temporal lobe which shows a marked preference for certain properties of sounds, for example longer durations, or variations in pitch. We finish by outlining some alternative factors that contribute to the left lateralization of speech perception. PMID:24125574

  4. Auditory and visual information in speech perception: A developmental perspective.

    PubMed

    Taitelbaum-Swead, Riki; Fostick, Leah

    2016-01-01

    This study investigates the development of audiovisual speech perception from age 4 to 80, analysing the contribution of modality, context and special features of specific language being tested. Data of 77 participants in five age groups is presented in the study. Speech stimuli were introduced via auditory, visual and audiovisual modalities. Monosyllabic meaningful and nonsense words were included in a signal-to-noise ratio of 0 dB. Speech perception accuracy in audiovisual and auditory modalities by age resulted in an inverse U-shape, with lowest performance at ages 4-5 and 65-80. In the visual modality, a clear difference was shown between performance of children (ages 4-5 and 8-9) and adults (age 20 and above). The findings of the current study have important implications for strategic planning in rehabilitation programmes for child and adult speakers of different languages with hearing difficulties. PMID:27029217

  5. Do temporal processes underlie left hemisphere dominance in speech perception?

    PubMed

    Scott, Sophie K; McGettigan, Carolyn

    2013-10-01

    It is not unusual to find it stated as a fact that the left hemisphere is specialized for the processing of rapid, or temporal aspects of sound, and that the dominance of the left hemisphere in the perception of speech can be a consequence of this specialization. In this review we explore the history of this claim and assess the weight of this assumption. We will demonstrate that instead of a supposed sensitivity of the left temporal lobe for the acoustic properties of speech, it is the right temporal lobe which shows a marked preference for certain properties of sounds, for example longer durations, or variations in pitch. We finish by outlining some alternative factors that contribute to the left lateralization of speech perception. PMID:24125574

  6. Speech Perception Ability in Individuals with Friedreich Ataxia

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rance, Gary; Fava, Rosanne; Baldock, Heath; Chong, April; Barker, Elizabeth; Corben, Louise; Delatycki

    2008-01-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate auditory pathway function and speech perception ability in individuals with Friedreich ataxia (FRDA). Ten subjects confirmed by genetic testing as being homozygous for a GAA expansion in intron 1 of the FXN gene were included. While each of the subjects demonstrated normal, or near normal sound detection, 3…

  7. Variability in Cortical Representations of Speech Sound Perception

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Boatman, Dana F.

    2007-01-01

    Recent brain mapping studies have provided new insights into the cortical systems that mediate human speech perception. Electrocortical stimulation mapping (ESM) is a brain mapping method that is used clinically to localize cortical functions in neurosurgical patients. Recent ESM studies have yielded new insights into the cortical systems that…

  8. Asymmetries for the Visual Expression and Perception of Speech

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nicholls, Michael E. R.; Searle, Dara A.

    2006-01-01

    This study explored asymmetries for movement, expression and perception of visual speech. Sixteen dextral models were videoed as they articulated: "bat," "cat," "fat," and "sat." Measurements revealed that the right side of the mouth was opened wider and for a longer period than the left. The asymmetry was accentuated at the beginning and ends of…

  9. The Role of the Listener's State in Speech Perception

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Viswanathan, Navin

    2009-01-01

    Accounts of speech perception disagree on whether listeners perceive the acoustic signal (Diehl, Lotto, & Holt, 2004) or the vocal tract gestures that produce the signal (e.g., Fowler, 1986). In this dissertation, I outline a research program using a phenomenon called "perceptual compensation for coarticulation" (Mann, 1980) to examine this…

  10. Visual Influences on Speech Perception in Children with Autism

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Iarocci, Grace; Rombough, Adrienne; Yager, Jodi; Weeks, Daniel J.; Chua, Romeo

    2010-01-01

    The bimodal perception of speech sounds was examined in children with autism as compared to mental age--matched typically developing (TD) children. A computer task was employed wherein only the mouth region of the face was displayed and children reported what they heard or saw when presented with consonant-vowel sounds in unimodal auditory…

  11. Infant Perception of Audio-Visual Speech Synchrony

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lewkowicz, David J.

    2010-01-01

    Three experiments investigated perception of audio-visual (A-V) speech synchrony in 4- to 10-month-old infants. Experiments 1 and 2 used a convergent-operations approach by habituating infants to an audiovisually synchronous syllable (Experiment 1) and then testing for detection of increasing degrees of A-V asynchrony (366, 500, and 666 ms) or by…

  12. Computational validation of the motor contribution to speech perception.

    PubMed

    Badino, Leonardo; D'Ausilio, Alessandro; Fadiga, Luciano; Metta, Giorgio

    2014-07-01

    Action perception and recognition are core abilities fundamental for human social interaction. A parieto-frontal network (the mirror neuron system) matches visually presented biological motion information onto observers' motor representations. This process of matching the actions of others onto our own sensorimotor repertoire is thought to be important for action recognition, providing a non-mediated "motor perception" based on a bidirectional flow of information along the mirror parieto-frontal circuits. State-of-the-art machine learning strategies for hand action identification have shown better performances when sensorimotor data, as opposed to visual information only, are available during learning. As speech is a particular type of action (with acoustic targets), it is expected to activate a mirror neuron mechanism. Indeed, in speech perception, motor centers have been shown to be causally involved in the discrimination of speech sounds. In this paper, we review recent neurophysiological and machine learning-based studies showing (a) the specific contribution of the motor system to speech perception and (b) that automatic phone recognition is significantly improved when motor data are used during training of classifiers (as opposed to learning from purely auditory data).

  13. Multisensory Speech Perception in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Woynaroski, Tiffany G.; Kwakye, Leslie D.; Foss-Feig, Jennifer H.; Stevenson, Ryan A.; Stone, Wendy L.; Wallace, Mark T.

    2013-01-01

    This study examined unisensory and multisensory speech perception in 8-17 year old children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) and typically developing controls matched on chronological age, sex, and IQ. Consonant-vowel syllables were presented in visual only, auditory only, matched audiovisual, and mismatched audiovisual ("McGurk")…

  14. Auditory Sensitivity, Speech Perception, and Reading Development and Impairment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zhang, Juan; McBride-Chang, Catherine

    2010-01-01

    While the importance of phonological sensitivity for understanding reading acquisition and impairment across orthographies is well documented, what underlies deficits in phonological sensitivity is not well understood. Some researchers have argued that speech perception underlies variability in phonological representations. Others have…

  15. Speech Perception Deficits by Chinese Children with Phonological Dyslexia

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Liu, Wenli; Shu, Hua; Yang, Yufang

    2009-01-01

    Findings concerning the relation between dyslexia and speech perception deficits are inconsistent in the literature. This study examined the relation in Chinese children using a more homogeneous sample--children with phonological dyslexia. Two experimental tasks were administered to a group of Chinese children with phonological dyslexia, a group…

  16. Beat gestures modulate auditory integration in speech perception.

    PubMed

    Biau, Emmanuel; Soto-Faraco, Salvador

    2013-02-01

    Spontaneous beat gestures are an integral part of the paralinguistic context during face-to-face conversations. Here we investigated the time course of beat-speech integration in speech perception by measuring ERPs evoked by words pronounced with or without an accompanying beat gesture, while participants watched a spoken discourse. Words accompanied by beats elicited a positive shift in ERPs at an early sensory stage (before 100 ms) and at a later time window coinciding with the auditory component P2. The same word tokens produced no ERP differences when participants listened to the discourse without view of the speaker. We conclude that beat gestures are integrated with speech early on in time and modulate sensory/phonological levels of processing. The present results support the possible role of beats as a highlighter, helping the listener to direct the focus of attention to important information and modulate the parsing of the speech stream.

  17. Visual Speech Acts Differently Than Lexical Context in Supporting Speech Perception

    PubMed Central

    Samuel, Arthur G.; Lieblich, Jerrold

    2014-01-01

    The speech signal is often badly articulated, and heard under difficult listening conditions. To deal with these problems, listeners make use of various types of context. In the current study, we examine a type of context that in previous work has been shown to affect how listeners report what they hear: visual speech (i.e., the visible movements of the speaker’s articulators). Despite the clear utility of this type of context under certain conditions, prior studies have shown that visually-driven phonetic percepts (via the “McGurk” effect) are not “real” enough to affect perception of later-occurring speech; such percepts have not produced selective adaptation effects. This failure contrasts with successful adaptation by sounds that are generated by lexical context – the word that a sound occurs within. We demonstrate here that this dissociation is robust, leading to the conclusion that visual and lexical contexts operate differently. We suggest that the dissociation reflects the dual nature of speech as both a perceptual object and a linguistic object. Visual speech seems to contribute directly to the computations of the perceptual object, but not the linguistic one, while lexical context is used in both types of computations. PMID:24749935

  18. Perception of Words and Pitch Patterns in Song and Speech

    PubMed Central

    Merrill, Julia; Sammler, Daniela; Bangert, Marc; Goldhahn, Dirk; Lohmann, Gabriele; Turner, Robert; Friederici, Angela D.

    2012-01-01

    This functional magnetic resonance imaging study examines shared and distinct cortical areas involved in the auditory perception of song and speech at the level of their underlying constituents: words and pitch patterns. Univariate and multivariate analyses were performed to isolate the neural correlates of the word- and pitch-based discrimination between song and speech, corrected for rhythmic differences in both. Therefore, six conditions, arranged in a subtractive hierarchy were created: sung sentences including words, pitch and rhythm; hummed speech prosody and song melody containing only pitch patterns and rhythm; and as a control the pure musical or speech rhythm. Systematic contrasts between these balanced conditions following their hierarchical organization showed a great overlap between song and speech at all levels in the bilateral temporal lobe, but suggested a differential role of the inferior frontal gyrus (IFG) and intraparietal sulcus (IPS) in processing song and speech. While the left IFG coded for spoken words and showed predominance over the right IFG in prosodic pitch processing, an opposite lateralization was found for pitch in song. The IPS showed sensitivity to discrete pitch relations in song as opposed to the gliding pitch in speech. Finally, the superior temporal gyrus and premotor cortex coded for general differences between words and pitch patterns, irrespective of whether they were sung or spoken. Thus, song and speech share many features which are reflected in a fundamental similarity of brain areas involved in their perception. However, fine-grained acoustic differences on word and pitch level are reflected in the IPS and the lateralized activity of the IFG. PMID:22457659

  19. Longitudinal Study of Speech Perception, Speech, and Language for Children with Hearing Loss in an Auditory-Verbal Therapy Program

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dornan, Dimity; Hickson, Louise; Murdoch, Bruce; Houston, Todd

    2009-01-01

    This study examined the speech perception, speech, and language developmental progress of 25 children with hearing loss (mean Pure-Tone Average [PTA] 79.37 dB HL) in an auditory verbal therapy program. Children were tested initially and then 21 months later on a battery of assessments. The speech and language results over time were compared with…

  20. Prosody Production and Perception with Conversational Speech

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mo, Yoonsook

    2010-01-01

    Speech utterances are more than the linear concatenation of individual phonemes or words. They are organized by prosodic structures comprising phonological units of different sizes (e.g., syllable, foot, word, and phrase) and the prominence relations among them. As the linguistic structure of spoken languages, prosody serves an important function…

  1. The Development of Speech Perception: The Transition from Speech Sounds to Spoken Words.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Goodman, Judith C., Ed.; Nusbaum, Howard C., Ed.

    This book contains a collection of current research in the development of speech perception and perceptual learning. The collection integrates research involving infants, young children, and adults, and explores systematically how adult perceptual abilities develop from early infant capabilities, focusing particularly on the nature of transitional…

  2. Using Visible Speech to Train Perception and Production of Speech for Individuals with Hearing Loss.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Massaro, Dominic W.; Light, Joanna

    2004-01-01

    The main goal of this study was to implement a computer-animated talking head, Baldi, as a language tutor for speech perception and production for individuals with hearing loss. Baldi can speak slowly; illustrate articulation by making the skin transparent to reveal the tongue, teeth, and palate; and show supplementary articulatory features, such…

  3. [Speech perception test in Italian language for profoundly deaf children].

    PubMed

    Genovese, E; Orzan, E; Turrini, M; Babighian, G; Arslan, E

    1995-10-01

    Speech perception tests are an important part of procedures for diagnosing pre-verbal hearing loss. Merely establishing a child's hearing threshold with and without a hearing aid is not sufficient to ensure an adequate evaluation with a view to selecting cases suitable for cochlear implants because it fails to indicate the real benefit obtained from using a conventional hearing aid reliably. Speech perception tests have proved useful not only for patient selection, but also for subsequent evaluation of the efficacy of new hearing aids, such as tactile devices and cochlear implants. In clinical practice, the tests most commonly adopted with small children are: The Auditory Comprehension Test (ACT), Discrimination after Training (DAT), Monosyllable, Trochee, Spondee tests (MTS), Glendonald Auditory Screening Priocedure (GASP), Early Speech Perception Test (ESP), Rather than considering specific results achieved in individual cases, reference is generally made to the four speech perception classes proposed by Moog and Geers of the CID of St. Louis. The purpose of this classification, made on the results obtained with suitably differentiated tests according to the child's age and language ability, is to detect differences in perception of a spoken message in ideal listening conditions. To date, no italian language speech perception test has been designed to establish the assessment of speech perception level in children with profound hearing impairment. We attempted, therefore, to adapt the existing English tests to the Italian language taking into consideration the differences between the two languages. Our attention focused on the ESP test since it can be applied to even very small children (2 years old). The ESP is proposed in a standard version for hearing-impaired children over the age of 6 years and in a simplified version for younger children. The rationale we used for selecting Italian words reflect the rationale established for the original version, but the

  4. The effects of speech motor preparation on auditory perception

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Myers, John

    Perception and action are coupled via bidirectional relationships between sensory and motor systems. Motor systems influence sensory areas by imparting a feedforward influence on sensory processing termed "motor efference copy" (MEC). MEC is suggested to occur in humans because speech preparation and production modulate neural measures of auditory cortical activity. However, it is not known if MEC can affect auditory perception. We tested the hypothesis that during speech preparation auditory thresholds will increase relative to a control condition, and that the increase would be most evident for frequencies that match the upcoming vocal response. Participants performed trials in a speech condition that contained a visual cue indicating a vocal response to prepare (one of two frequencies), followed by a go signal to speak. To determine threshold shifts, voice-matched or -mismatched pure tones were presented at one of three time points between the cue and target. The control condition was the same except the visual cues did not specify a response and subjects did not speak. For each participant, we measured f0 thresholds in isolation from the task in order to establish baselines. Results indicated that auditory thresholds were highest during speech preparation, relative to baselines and a non-speech control condition, especially at suprathreshold levels. Thresholds for tones that matched the frequency of planned responses gradually increased over time, but sharply declined for the mismatched tones shortly before targets. Findings support the hypothesis that MEC influences auditory perception by modulating thresholds during speech preparation, with some specificity relative to the planned response. The threshold increase in tasks vs. baseline may reflect attentional demands of the tasks.

  5. Audio-visual speech perception: a developmental ERP investigation.

    PubMed

    Knowland, Victoria C P; Mercure, Evelyne; Karmiloff-Smith, Annette; Dick, Fred; Thomas, Michael S C

    2014-01-01

    Being able to see a talking face confers a considerable advantage for speech perception in adulthood. However, behavioural data currently suggest that children fail to make full use of these available visual speech cues until age 8 or 9. This is particularly surprising given the potential utility of multiple informational cues during language learning. We therefore explored this at the neural level. The event-related potential (ERP) technique has been used to assess the mechanisms of audio-visual speech perception in adults, with visual cues reliably modulating auditory ERP responses to speech. Previous work has shown congruence-dependent shortening of auditory N1/P2 latency and congruence-independent attenuation of amplitude in the presence of auditory and visual speech signals, compared to auditory alone. The aim of this study was to chart the development of these well-established modulatory effects over mid-to-late childhood. Experiment 1 employed an adult sample to validate a child-friendly stimulus set and paradigm by replicating previously observed effects of N1/P2 amplitude and latency modulation by visual speech cues; it also revealed greater attenuation of component amplitude given incongruent audio-visual stimuli, pointing to a new interpretation of the amplitude modulation effect. Experiment 2 used the same paradigm to map cross-sectional developmental change in these ERP responses between 6 and 11 years of age. The effect of amplitude modulation by visual cues emerged over development, while the effect of latency modulation was stable over the child sample. These data suggest that auditory ERP modulation by visual speech represents separable underlying cognitive processes, some of which show earlier maturation than others over the course of development. PMID:24176002

  6. Theta brain rhythms index perceptual narrowing in infant speech perception.

    PubMed

    Bosseler, Alexis N; Taulu, Samu; Pihko, Elina; Mäkelä, Jyrki P; Imada, Toshiaki; Ahonen, Antti; Kuhl, Patricia K

    2013-01-01

    The development of speech perception shows a dramatic transition between infancy and adulthood. Between 6 and 12 months, infants' initial ability to discriminate all phonetic units across the world's languages narrows-native discrimination increases while non-native discrimination shows a steep decline. We used magnetoencephalography (MEG) to examine whether brain oscillations in the theta band (4-8 Hz), reflecting increases in attention and cognitive effort, would provide a neural measure of the perceptual narrowing phenomenon in speech. Using an oddball paradigm, we varied speech stimuli in two dimensions, stimulus frequency (frequent vs. infrequent) and language (native vs. non-native speech syllables) and tested 6-month-old infants, 12-month-old infants, and adults. We hypothesized that 6-month-old infants would show increased relative theta power (RTP) for frequent syllables, regardless of their status as native or non-native syllables, reflecting young infants' attention and cognitive effort in response to highly frequent stimuli ("statistical learning"). In adults, we hypothesized increased RTP for non-native stimuli, regardless of their presentation frequency, reflecting increased cognitive effort for non-native phonetic categories. The 12-month-old infants were expected to show a pattern in transition, but one more similar to adults than to 6-month-old infants. The MEG brain rhythm results supported these hypotheses. We suggest that perceptual narrowing in speech perception is governed by an implicit learning process. This learning process involves an implicit shift in attention from frequent events (infants) to learned categories (adults). Theta brain oscillatory activity may provide an index of perceptual narrowing beyond speech, and would offer a test of whether the early speech learning process is governed by domain-general or domain-specific processes.

  7. Theta brain rhythms index perceptual narrowing in infant speech perception

    PubMed Central

    Bosseler, Alexis N.; Taulu, Samu; Pihko, Elina; Mäkelä, Jyrki P.; Imada, Toshiaki; Ahonen, Antti; Kuhl, Patricia K.

    2013-01-01

    The development of speech perception shows a dramatic transition between infancy and adulthood. Between 6 and 12 months, infants' initial ability to discriminate all phonetic units across the world's languages narrows—native discrimination increases while non-native discrimination shows a steep decline. We used magnetoencephalography (MEG) to examine whether brain oscillations in the theta band (4–8 Hz), reflecting increases in attention and cognitive effort, would provide a neural measure of the perceptual narrowing phenomenon in speech. Using an oddball paradigm, we varied speech stimuli in two dimensions, stimulus frequency (frequent vs. infrequent) and language (native vs. non-native speech syllables) and tested 6-month-old infants, 12-month-old infants, and adults. We hypothesized that 6-month-old infants would show increased relative theta power (RTP) for frequent syllables, regardless of their status as native or non-native syllables, reflecting young infants' attention and cognitive effort in response to highly frequent stimuli (“statistical learning”). In adults, we hypothesized increased RTP for non-native stimuli, regardless of their presentation frequency, reflecting increased cognitive effort for non-native phonetic categories. The 12-month-old infants were expected to show a pattern in transition, but one more similar to adults than to 6-month-old infants. The MEG brain rhythm results supported these hypotheses. We suggest that perceptual narrowing in speech perception is governed by an implicit learning process. This learning process involves an implicit shift in attention from frequent events (infants) to learned categories (adults). Theta brain oscillatory activity may provide an index of perceptual narrowing beyond speech, and would offer a test of whether the early speech learning process is governed by domain-general or domain-specific processes. PMID:24130536

  8. The contribution of dynamic visual cues to audiovisual speech perception.

    PubMed

    Jaekl, Philip; Pesquita, Ana; Alsius, Agnes; Munhall, Kevin; Soto-Faraco, Salvador

    2015-08-01

    Seeing a speaker's facial gestures can significantly improve speech comprehension, especially in noisy environments. However, the nature of the visual information from the speaker's facial movements that is relevant for this enhancement is still unclear. Like auditory speech signals, visual speech signals unfold over time and contain both dynamic configural information and luminance-defined local motion cues; two information sources that are thought to engage anatomically and functionally separate visual systems. Whereas, some past studies have highlighted the importance of local, luminance-defined motion cues in audiovisual speech perception, the contribution of dynamic configural information signalling changes in form over time has not yet been assessed. We therefore attempted to single out the contribution of dynamic configural information to audiovisual speech processing. To this aim, we measured word identification performance in noise using unimodal auditory stimuli, and with audiovisual stimuli. In the audiovisual condition, speaking faces were presented as point light displays achieved via motion capture of the original talker. Point light displays could be isoluminant, to minimise the contribution of effective luminance-defined local motion information, or with added luminance contrast, allowing the combined effect of dynamic configural cues and local motion cues. Audiovisual enhancement was found in both the isoluminant and contrast-based luminance conditions compared to an auditory-only condition, demonstrating, for the first time the specific contribution of dynamic configural cues to audiovisual speech improvement. These findings imply that globally processed changes in a speaker's facial shape contribute significantly towards the perception of articulatory gestures and the analysis of audiovisual speech.

  9. Sources of Confusion in Infant Audiovisual Speech Perception Research.

    PubMed

    Shaw, Kathleen E; Bortfeld, Heather

    2015-01-01

    Speech is a multimodal stimulus, with information provided in both the auditory and visual modalities. The resulting audiovisual signal provides relatively stable, tightly correlated cues that support speech perception and processing in a range of contexts. Despite the clear relationship between spoken language and the moving mouth that produces it, there remains considerable disagreement over how sensitive early language learners-infants-are to whether and how sight and sound co-occur. Here we examine sources of this disagreement, with a focus on how comparisons of data obtained using different paradigms and different stimuli may serve to exacerbate misunderstanding.

  10. Sources of Confusion in Infant Audiovisual Speech Perception Research

    PubMed Central

    Shaw, Kathleen E.; Bortfeld, Heather

    2015-01-01

    Speech is a multimodal stimulus, with information provided in both the auditory and visual modalities. The resulting audiovisual signal provides relatively stable, tightly correlated cues that support speech perception and processing in a range of contexts. Despite the clear relationship between spoken language and the moving mouth that produces it, there remains considerable disagreement over how sensitive early language learners—infants—are to whether and how sight and sound co-occur. Here we examine sources of this disagreement, with a focus on how comparisons of data obtained using different paradigms and different stimuli may serve to exacerbate misunderstanding. PMID:26696919

  11. Neuroanatomical Characteristics and Speech Perception in Noise in Older Adults

    PubMed Central

    Wong, Patrick C. M.; Ettlinger, Marc; Sheppard, John P.; Gunasekera, Geshri M.; Dhar, Sumitrajit

    2010-01-01

    Objectives Previous research has attributed older adult’s difficulty with perceiving speech in noise to peripheral hearing loss. Recent studies have suggested a more complex picture, however, and implicate the central nervous system in sensation and sensory deficits. This study examines the relationship between the neuroanatomical structure of cognitive regions and the ability to perceive speech in noise in older adults. In particular, the neuroanatomical characteristics of the left ventral and dorsal prefrontal cortex are considered relative to standard measures of hearing in noise. Design The participants were fifteen older and fourteen younger right-handed native speakers of American English who had no neurological deficits and scored better than normal on standardized cognitive tests. We measured the participants’ peripheral hearing ability as well as their ability to perceive speech in noise using standardized tests. Anatomical magnetic resonance images were taken and analyzed to extract regional volumes and thicknesses of several key neuroanatomical structures. Results The results showed that younger adults had better hearing sensitivity and better speech perception in noise ability than older adults. For the older adults only, the volume of the left pars triangularis and the cortical thickness of the left superior frontal gyrus were significant predictors of performance on the speech-in-noise test. Discussion These findings suggest that, in addition to peripheral structures, the central nervous system also contributes to the ability to perceive speech in noise. In older adults, a decline in the volume and cortical thickness of the prefrontal cortex (PFC) during aging can therefore be a factor in a declining ability to perceive speech in a naturalistic environment. Our study shows a link between anatomy of PFC and speech perception in older adults. These findings are consistent with the decline-compensation hypothesis, which states that a decline in

  12. A music perception disorder (congenital amusia) influences speech comprehension.

    PubMed

    Liu, Fang; Jiang, Cunmei; Wang, Bei; Xu, Yi; Patel, Aniruddh D

    2015-01-01

    This study investigated the underlying link between speech and music by examining whether and to what extent congenital amusia, a musical disorder characterized by degraded pitch processing, would impact spoken sentence comprehension for speakers of Mandarin, a tone language. Sixteen Mandarin-speaking amusics and 16 matched controls were tested on the intelligibility of news-like Mandarin sentences with natural and flat fundamental frequency (F0) contours (created via speech resynthesis) under four signal-to-noise (SNR) conditions (no noise, +5, 0, and -5dB SNR). While speech intelligibility in quiet and extremely noisy conditions (SNR=-5dB) was not significantly compromised by flattened F0, both amusic and control groups achieved better performance with natural-F0 sentences than flat-F0 sentences under moderately noisy conditions (SNR=+5 and 0dB). Relative to normal listeners, amusics demonstrated reduced speech intelligibility in both quiet and noise, regardless of whether the F0 contours of the sentences were natural or flattened. This deficit in speech intelligibility was not associated with impaired pitch perception in amusia. These findings provide evidence for impaired speech comprehension in congenital amusia, suggesting that the deficit of amusics extends beyond pitch processing and includes segmental processing. PMID:25445781

  13. Talker variability in audio-visual speech perception.

    PubMed

    Heald, Shannon L M; Nusbaum, Howard C

    2014-01-01

    A change in talker is a change in the context for the phonetic interpretation of acoustic patterns of speech. Different talkers have different mappings between acoustic patterns and phonetic categories and listeners need to adapt to these differences. Despite this complexity, listeners are adept at comprehending speech in multiple-talker contexts, albeit at a slight but measurable performance cost (e.g., slower recognition). So far, this talker variability cost has been demonstrated only in audio-only speech. Other research in single-talker contexts have shown, however, that when listeners are able to see a talker's face, speech recognition is improved under adverse listening (e.g., noise or distortion) conditions that can increase uncertainty in the mapping between acoustic patterns and phonetic categories. Does seeing a talker's face reduce the cost of word recognition in multiple-talker contexts? We used a speeded word-monitoring task in which listeners make quick judgments about target word recognition in single- and multiple-talker contexts. Results show faster recognition performance in single-talker conditions compared to multiple-talker conditions for both audio-only and audio-visual speech. However, recognition time in a multiple-talker context was slower in the audio-visual condition compared to audio-only condition. These results suggest that seeing a talker's face during speech perception may slow recognition by increasing the importance of talker identification, signaling to the listener a change in talker has occurred. PMID:25076919

  14. Linking Speech Perception and Neurophysiology: Speech Decoding Guided by Cascaded Oscillators Locked to the Input Rhythm

    PubMed Central

    Ghitza, Oded

    2011-01-01

    The premise of this study is that current models of speech perception, which are driven by acoustic features alone, are incomplete, and that the role of decoding time during memory access must be incorporated to account for the patterns of observed recognition phenomena. It is postulated that decoding time is governed by a cascade of neuronal oscillators, which guide template-matching operations at a hierarchy of temporal scales. Cascaded cortical oscillations in the theta, beta, and gamma frequency bands are argued to be crucial for speech intelligibility. Intelligibility is high so long as these oscillations remain phase locked to the auditory input rhythm. A model (Tempo) is presented which is capable of emulating recent psychophysical data on the intelligibility of speech sentences as a function of “packaging” rate (Ghitza and Greenberg, 2009). The data show that intelligibility of speech that is time-compressed by a factor of 3 (i.e., a high syllabic rate) is poor (above 50% word error rate), but is substantially restored when the information stream is re-packaged by the insertion of silent gaps in between successive compressed-signal intervals – a counterintuitive finding, difficult to explain using classical models of speech perception, but emerging naturally from the Tempo architecture. PMID:21743809

  15. A little more conversation, a little less action - candidate roles for motor cortex in speech perception

    PubMed Central

    Scott, Sophie K; McGettigan, Carolyn; Eisner, Frank

    2014-01-01

    The motor theory of speech perception assumes that activation of the motor system is essential in the perception of speech. However, deficits in speech perception and comprehension do not arise from damage that is restricted to the motor cortex, few functional imaging studies reveal activity in motor cortex during speech perception, and the motor cortex is strongly activated by many different sound categories. Here, we evaluate alternative roles for the motor cortex in spoken communication and suggest a specific role in sensorimotor processing in conversation. We argue that motor-cortex activation it is essential in joint speech, particularly for the timing of turn-taking. PMID:19277052

  16. The future of infant speech perception research: Gotta wear shades

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Walley, Amanda C.

    2002-05-01

    The future of infant speech perception research is very bright in large part because of the legacy left to us by Peter W. Jusczyk. I will selectively review a number of studies, many of them conducted by Peter and his colleagues, that I consider to be especially interesting and/or provocative and that have helped to advance our understanding of the development of speech perception. For example, in two fairly recent studies, 4.5 to 6-month-old infants were shown to display some incipient spoken word recognition ability [D. R. Mandel et al., Psychol. Sci. 6, 314-317 (1995); R. Tincoff and P. W. Jusczyk, ibid. 10, 172-175 (1999)]. In effect, these studies have smashed the sound-meaning barrier that was, according to traditional estimates, placed somewhere between 9 and 13 months of age and have important implications for current developmental theory. This work is also illustrative of one trend apparent in recent research, namely, to accord greater attention to infants' perception of ecologically-relevant stimuli and/or their perception of speech stimuli in ecologically-relevant contexts. Still, there is much to be learned about spoken word recognition beyond infancy and before adulthood if we are to arrive at a complete picture of this core aspect of spoken language processing.

  17. EXPERIMENTAL ANALYSIS OF THE CONTROL OF SPEECH PRODUCTION AND PERCEPTION--IV. PROGRESS REPORT NO. 4.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    LANE, HARLAN; AND OTHERS

    THE PROGRESS OF AN EXPERIMENTAL RESEARCH PROGRAM IN SPEECH CONTROL WAS REPORTED. DISCUSSION TOPICS WERE (1) PROGRAMED LEARNING OF A SECOND LANGUAGE, (2) A CRITICAL REVIEW OF THE MOTOR THEORY OF SPEECH PERCEPTION, (3) VISUAL CONTROL OF PHONEMIC CONTRASTS (A TEST OF THE MOTOR THEORY OF SPEECH PERCEPTION), (4) SINGLE STIMULUS PROPERTIES IN THE…

  18. Music training and speech perception: a gene-environment interaction.

    PubMed

    Schellenberg, E Glenn

    2015-03-01

    Claims of beneficial side effects of music training are made for many different abilities, including verbal and visuospatial abilities, executive functions, working memory, IQ, and speech perception in particular. Such claims assume that music training causes the associations even though children who take music lessons are likely to differ from other children in music aptitude, which is associated with many aspects of speech perception. Music training in childhood is also associated with cognitive, personality, and demographic variables, and it is well established that IQ and personality are determined largely by genetics. Recent evidence also indicates that the role of genetics in music aptitude and music achievement is much larger than previously thought. In short, music training is an ideal model for the study of gene-environment interactions but far less appropriate as a model for the study of plasticity. Children seek out environments, including those with music lessons, that are consistent with their predispositions; such environments exaggerate preexisting individual differences. PMID:25773632

  19. Music training and speech perception: a gene-environment interaction.

    PubMed

    Schellenberg, E Glenn

    2015-03-01

    Claims of beneficial side effects of music training are made for many different abilities, including verbal and visuospatial abilities, executive functions, working memory, IQ, and speech perception in particular. Such claims assume that music training causes the associations even though children who take music lessons are likely to differ from other children in music aptitude, which is associated with many aspects of speech perception. Music training in childhood is also associated with cognitive, personality, and demographic variables, and it is well established that IQ and personality are determined largely by genetics. Recent evidence also indicates that the role of genetics in music aptitude and music achievement is much larger than previously thought. In short, music training is an ideal model for the study of gene-environment interactions but far less appropriate as a model for the study of plasticity. Children seek out environments, including those with music lessons, that are consistent with their predispositions; such environments exaggerate preexisting individual differences.

  20. How the demographic makeup of our community influences speech perception.

    PubMed

    Lev-Ari, Shiri; Peperkamp, Sharon

    2016-06-01

    Speech perception is known to be influenced by listeners' expectations of the speaker. This paper tests whether the demographic makeup of individuals' communities can influence their perception of foreign sounds by influencing their expectations of the language. Using online experiments with participants from all across the U.S. and matched census data on the proportion of Spanish and other foreign language speakers in participants' communities, this paper shows that the demographic makeup of individuals' communities influences their expectations of foreign languages to have an alveolar trill versus a tap (Experiment 1), as well as their consequent perception of these sounds (Experiment 2). Thus, the paper shows that while individuals' expectations of foreign language to have a trill occasionally lead them to misperceive a tap in a foreign language as a trill, a higher proportion of non-trill language speakers in one's community decreases this likelihood. These results show that individuals' environment can influence their perception by shaping their linguistic expectations.

  1. The role of stimulus uncertainty in speech perception

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kewley-Port, Diane

    2001-05-01

    Among the important experimental factors that affect psychophysical measurements of speech perception is stimulus uncertainty. Charles Watson has defined stimulus uncertainty as variation in stimulus parameters from trial to trial and demonstrated its highly degrading effects on a variety of complex auditory signals. Watson, Kelley, and Wroton showed large (×10) elevation of frequency-discrimination thresholds for ``word-length tonal patterns'' under high uncertainty conditions [J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 60, 1176-1186 (1976)]. Investigations of speech, such as the perception of VOT (voice onset time) in stops [Kewley-Port, Watson, and Foyle, J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 83, 1113-1145 (1988)] and discrimination of vowel formants [Kewley-Port, J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 110 (2001)], have also demonstrated the systematic and profound effects of higher levels of stimulus uncertainty. This presentation will discuss extensions of the concept of stimulus uncertainty that demonstrate the degrading effects of the variability in more natural speech (versus synthetic speech) and longer phonetic context (including sentences) on vowel formant discrimination. Results from normal-hearing and hearing-impaired listeners demonstrating similar detrimental effects of high stimulus uncertainty will also be presented. [Research supported by NIH-NIDCD.

  2. Nature, Nurture, and Age in Language Acquisition: The Case of Speech Perception.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wode, Henning

    1994-01-01

    This paper reviews the research on speech perception and reassesses the contribution of innate capacities versus external stimulation in conjunction with age in first- and second-language acquisition. A developmental model of speech perception is then discussed in relation to neonatal auditory perception. (Contains 86 references.) (MDM)

  3. The influence of infant-directed speech on 12-month-olds' intersensory perception of fluent speech.

    PubMed

    Kubicek, Claudia; Gervain, Judit; Hillairet de Boisferon, Anne; Pascalis, Olivier; Lœvenbruck, Hélène; Schwarzer, Gudrun

    2014-11-01

    The present study examined whether infant-directed (ID) speech facilitates intersensory matching of audio-visual fluent speech in 12-month-old infants. German-learning infants' audio-visual matching ability of German and French fluent speech was assessed by using a variant of the intermodal matching procedure, with auditory and visual speech information presented sequentially. In Experiment 1, the sentences were spoken in an adult-directed (AD) manner. Results showed that 12-month-old infants did not exhibit a matching performance for the native, nor for the non-native language. However, Experiment 2 revealed that when ID speech stimuli were used, infants did perceive the relation between auditory and visual speech attributes, but only in response to their native language. Thus, the findings suggest that ID speech might have an influence on the intersensory perception of fluent speech and shed further light on multisensory perceptual narrowing.

  4. ANALOGY AND DISANALOGY IN PRODUCTION AND PERCEPTION OF SPEECH

    PubMed Central

    Remez, Robert E.

    2014-01-01

    A varied psychological vocabulary now describes the cognitive and social conditions of language production, the ultimate result of which is the mechanical action of vocal musculature in spoken expression. Following the logic of the speech chain, descriptions of production have often exhibited a clear analogy to accounts of perception. This reciprocality is especially evident in explanations that rely on reafference to control production, on articulation to inform perception, and on strict parity between produced and perceived form to provide invariance in the relation between abstract linguistic objects and observed expression. However, a causal account of production and perception cannot derive solely from this hopeful analogy. Despite sharing of abstract linguistic representations, the control functions in production and perception as well as the constraints on their use stand in fundamental disanalogy. This is readily seen in the different adaptive challenges to production — to speak in a single voice — and perception — to resolve familiar linguistic properties in any voice. This acknowledgment sets descriptive and theoretical challenges that break the symmetry of production and perception. As a consequence, this recognition dislodges an old impasse between the psychoacoustic and motoric accounts in the regulation of production and perception. PMID:25642428

  5. The relationship of speech intelligibility with hearing sensitivity, cognition, and perceived hearing difficulties varies for different speech perception tests

    PubMed Central

    Heinrich, Antje; Henshaw, Helen; Ferguson, Melanie A.

    2015-01-01

    Listeners vary in their ability to understand speech in noisy environments. Hearing sensitivity, as measured by pure-tone audiometry, can only partly explain these results, and cognition has emerged as another key concept. Although cognition relates to speech perception, the exact nature of the relationship remains to be fully understood. This study investigates how different aspects of cognition, particularly working memory and attention, relate to speech intelligibility for various tests. Perceptual accuracy of speech perception represents just one aspect of functioning in a listening environment. Activity and participation limits imposed by hearing loss, in addition to the demands of a listening environment, are also important and may be better captured by self-report questionnaires. Understanding how speech perception relates to self-reported aspects of listening forms the second focus of the study. Forty-four listeners aged between 50 and 74 years with mild sensorineural hearing loss were tested on speech perception tests differing in complexity from low (phoneme discrimination in quiet), to medium (digit triplet perception in speech-shaped noise) to high (sentence perception in modulated noise); cognitive tests of attention, memory, and non-verbal intelligence quotient; and self-report questionnaires of general health-related and hearing-specific quality of life. Hearing sensitivity and cognition related to intelligibility differently depending on the speech test: neither was important for phoneme discrimination, hearing sensitivity alone was important for digit triplet perception, and hearing and cognition together played a role in sentence perception. Self-reported aspects of auditory functioning were correlated with speech intelligibility to different degrees, with digit triplets in noise showing the richest pattern. The results suggest that intelligibility tests can vary in their auditory and cognitive demands and their sensitivity to the challenges that

  6. The relationship of speech intelligibility with hearing sensitivity, cognition, and perceived hearing difficulties varies for different speech perception tests.

    PubMed

    Heinrich, Antje; Henshaw, Helen; Ferguson, Melanie A

    2015-01-01

    Listeners vary in their ability to understand speech in noisy environments. Hearing sensitivity, as measured by pure-tone audiometry, can only partly explain these results, and cognition has emerged as another key concept. Although cognition relates to speech perception, the exact nature of the relationship remains to be fully understood. This study investigates how different aspects of cognition, particularly working memory and attention, relate to speech intelligibility for various tests. Perceptual accuracy of speech perception represents just one aspect of functioning in a listening environment. Activity and participation limits imposed by hearing loss, in addition to the demands of a listening environment, are also important and may be better captured by self-report questionnaires. Understanding how speech perception relates to self-reported aspects of listening forms the second focus of the study. Forty-four listeners aged between 50 and 74 years with mild sensorineural hearing loss were tested on speech perception tests differing in complexity from low (phoneme discrimination in quiet), to medium (digit triplet perception in speech-shaped noise) to high (sentence perception in modulated noise); cognitive tests of attention, memory, and non-verbal intelligence quotient; and self-report questionnaires of general health-related and hearing-specific quality of life. Hearing sensitivity and cognition related to intelligibility differently depending on the speech test: neither was important for phoneme discrimination, hearing sensitivity alone was important for digit triplet perception, and hearing and cognition together played a role in sentence perception. Self-reported aspects of auditory functioning were correlated with speech intelligibility to different degrees, with digit triplets in noise showing the richest pattern. The results suggest that intelligibility tests can vary in their auditory and cognitive demands and their sensitivity to the challenges that

  7. Cognitive Factors and Cochlear Implants: Some Thoughts on Perception, Learning, and Memory in Speech Perception

    PubMed Central

    Pisoni, David B.

    2012-01-01

    Over the past few years, there has been increased interest in studying some of the cognitive factors that affect speech perception performance of cochlear implant patients. In this paper, I provide a brief theoretical overview of the fundamental assumptions of the information-processing approach to cognition and discuss the role of perception, learning, and memory in speech perception and spoken language processing. The information-processing framework provides researchers and clinicians with a new way to understand the time-course of perceptual and cognitive development and the relations between perception and production of spoken language. Directions for future research using this approach are discussed including the study of individual differences, predicting success with a cochlear implant from a set of cognitive measures of performance and developing new intervention strategies. PMID:10708075

  8. Adult Speech Perception: Asymmetrical Effects in Categorical Perception.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Uselding, Douglas K.; Molfese, Dennis L.

    To measure the symmetry of adult categorical phoneme perception, 10 adult male undergraduate students enrolled in an introductory psychology class were the subjects for this study as part of their course requirements. The stimuli used in this study were prepared at Haskins Laboratories by means of a parallel resonance synthesizer and computer. The…

  9. Native and Non-native Speech Perception by Hearing-Impaired Listeners in Noise- and Speech Maskers.

    PubMed

    Kilman, Lisa; Zekveld, Adriana; Hällgren, Mathias; Rönnberg, Jerker

    2015-01-01

    This study evaluated how hearing-impaired listeners perceive native (Swedish) and nonnative (English) speech in the presence of noise- and speech maskers. Speech reception thresholds were measured for four different masker types for each target language. The maskers consisted of stationary and fluctuating noise and two-talker babble in Swedish and English. Twenty-three hearing-impaired native Swedish listeners participated, aged between 28 and 65 years. The participants also performed cognitive tests of working memory capacity in Swedish and English, nonverbal reasoning, and an English proficiency test. Results indicated that the speech maskers were more interfering than the noise maskers in both target languages. The larger need for phonetic and semantic cues in a nonnative language makes a stationary masker relatively more challenging than a fluctuating-noise masker. Better hearing acuity (pure tone average) was associated with better perception of the target speech in Swedish, and better English proficiency was associated with better speech perception in English. Larger working memory and better pure tone averages were related to the better perception of speech masked with fluctuating noise in the nonnative language. This suggests that both are relevant in highly taxing conditions. A large variance in performance between the listeners was observed, especially for speech perception in the nonnative language. PMID:25910504

  10. Native and Non-native Speech Perception by Hearing-Impaired Listeners in Noise- and Speech Maskers.

    PubMed

    Kilman, Lisa; Zekveld, Adriana; Hällgren, Mathias; Rönnberg, Jerker

    2015-01-01

    This study evaluated how hearing-impaired listeners perceive native (Swedish) and nonnative (English) speech in the presence of noise- and speech maskers. Speech reception thresholds were measured for four different masker types for each target language. The maskers consisted of stationary and fluctuating noise and two-talker babble in Swedish and English. Twenty-three hearing-impaired native Swedish listeners participated, aged between 28 and 65 years. The participants also performed cognitive tests of working memory capacity in Swedish and English, nonverbal reasoning, and an English proficiency test. Results indicated that the speech maskers were more interfering than the noise maskers in both target languages. The larger need for phonetic and semantic cues in a nonnative language makes a stationary masker relatively more challenging than a fluctuating-noise masker. Better hearing acuity (pure tone average) was associated with better perception of the target speech in Swedish, and better English proficiency was associated with better speech perception in English. Larger working memory and better pure tone averages were related to the better perception of speech masked with fluctuating noise in the nonnative language. This suggests that both are relevant in highly taxing conditions. A large variance in performance between the listeners was observed, especially for speech perception in the nonnative language.

  11. Automatic audiovisual integration in speech perception.

    PubMed

    Gentilucci, Maurizio; Cattaneo, Luigi

    2005-11-01

    Two experiments aimed to determine whether features of both the visual and acoustical inputs are always merged into the perceived representation of speech and whether this audiovisual integration is based on either cross-modal binding functions or on imitation. In a McGurk paradigm, observers were required to repeat aloud a string of phonemes uttered by an actor (acoustical presentation of phonemic string) whose mouth, in contrast, mimicked pronunciation of a different string (visual presentation). In a control experiment participants read the same printed strings of letters. This condition aimed to analyze the pattern of voice and the lip kinematics controlling for imitation. In the control experiment and in the congruent audiovisual presentation, i.e. when the articulation mouth gestures were congruent with the emission of the string of phones, the voice spectrum and the lip kinematics varied according to the pronounced strings of phonemes. In the McGurk paradigm the participants were unaware of the incongruence between visual and acoustical stimuli. The acoustical analysis of the participants' spoken responses showed three distinct patterns: the fusion of the two stimuli (the McGurk effect), repetition of the acoustically presented string of phonemes, and, less frequently, of the string of phonemes corresponding to the mouth gestures mimicked by the actor. However, the analysis of the latter two responses showed that the formant 2 of the participants' voice spectra always differed from the value recorded in the congruent audiovisual presentation. It approached the value of the formant 2 of the string of phonemes presented in the other modality, which was apparently ignored. The lip kinematics of the participants repeating the string of phonemes acoustically presented were influenced by the observation of the lip movements mimicked by the actor, but only when pronouncing a labial consonant. The data are discussed in favor of the hypothesis that features of both

  12. Predicting individual variation in language from infant speech perception measures.

    PubMed

    Cristia, Alejandrina; Seidl, Amanda; Junge, Caroline; Soderstrom, Melanie; Hagoort, Peter

    2014-01-01

    There are increasing reports that individual variation in behavioral and neurophysiological measures of infant speech processing predicts later language outcomes, and specifically concurrent or subsequent vocabulary size. If such findings are held up under scrutiny, they could both illuminate theoretical models of language development and contribute to the prediction of communicative disorders. A qualitative, systematic review of this emergent literature illustrated the variety of approaches that have been used and highlighted some conceptual problems regarding the measurements. A quantitative analysis of the same data established that the bivariate relation was significant, with correlations of similar strength to those found for well-established nonlinguistic predictors of language. Further exploration of infant speech perception predictors, particularly from a methodological perspective, is recommended.

  13. FOXP2 variation modulates functional hemispheric asymmetries for speech perception.

    PubMed

    Ocklenburg, Sebastian; Arning, Larissa; Gerding, Wanda M; Epplen, Jörg T; Güntürkün, Onur; Beste, Christian

    2013-09-01

    Left-hemispheric language dominance is a well-known characteristic of the human language system, but the molecular mechanisms underlying this crucial feature of vocal communication are still far from being understood. The forkhead box P2 gene FOXP2, which has been related to speech development, constitutes an interesting candidate gene in this regard. Therefore, the present study was aimed at investigating effects of variation in FOXP2 on individual language dominance. To this end, we used a dichotic listening and a visual half-field task in a sample of 456 healthy adults. The FOXP2 SNPs rs2396753 and rs12533005 were found to be significantly associated with the distribution of correct answers on the dichotic listening task. These results show that variation in FOXP2 may contribute to the inter-individual variability in hemispheric asymmetries for speech perception.

  14. The influence of dialect upon the perception of dysarthic speech.

    PubMed

    Dagenais, Paul A; Stallworth, Jamequa A

    2014-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to determine the influence of dialect upon the perception of dysarthric speech. Speakers and listeners were self-identifying as either Caucasian American or African American. Three speakers were Caucasian American, three were African American. Four speakers had experienced a CVA and were dysarthric. Listeners were age matched and were equally divided for gender. Readers recorded 14 word sentences from the Assessment of Intelligibility of Dysarthric Speech. Listeners provided ratings of intelligibility, comprehensibility, and acceptability. Own-race biases were found for all measures; however, significant findings were found for intelligibility and comprehensibility in that the Caucasian Americans provided significantly higher scores for Caucasian American speakers. Clinical implications are discussed.

  15. Bridging music and speech rhythm: rhythmic priming and audio-motor training affect speech perception.

    PubMed

    Cason, Nia; Astésano, Corine; Schön, Daniele

    2015-02-01

    Following findings that musical rhythmic priming enhances subsequent speech perception, we investigated whether rhythmic priming for spoken sentences can enhance phonological processing - the building blocks of speech - and whether audio-motor training enhances this effect. Participants heard a metrical prime followed by a sentence (with a matching/mismatching prosodic structure), for which they performed a phoneme detection task. Behavioural (RT) data was collected from two groups: one who received audio-motor training, and one who did not. We hypothesised that 1) phonological processing would be enhanced in matching conditions, and 2) audio-motor training with the musical rhythms would enhance this effect. Indeed, providing a matching rhythmic prime context resulted in faster phoneme detection, thus revealing a cross-domain effect of musical rhythm on phonological processing. In addition, our results indicate that rhythmic audio-motor training enhances this priming effect. These results have important implications for rhythm-based speech therapies, and suggest that metrical rhythm in music and speech may rely on shared temporal processing brain resources. PMID:25553343

  16. Bridging music and speech rhythm: rhythmic priming and audio-motor training affect speech perception.

    PubMed

    Cason, Nia; Astésano, Corine; Schön, Daniele

    2015-02-01

    Following findings that musical rhythmic priming enhances subsequent speech perception, we investigated whether rhythmic priming for spoken sentences can enhance phonological processing - the building blocks of speech - and whether audio-motor training enhances this effect. Participants heard a metrical prime followed by a sentence (with a matching/mismatching prosodic structure), for which they performed a phoneme detection task. Behavioural (RT) data was collected from two groups: one who received audio-motor training, and one who did not. We hypothesised that 1) phonological processing would be enhanced in matching conditions, and 2) audio-motor training with the musical rhythms would enhance this effect. Indeed, providing a matching rhythmic prime context resulted in faster phoneme detection, thus revealing a cross-domain effect of musical rhythm on phonological processing. In addition, our results indicate that rhythmic audio-motor training enhances this priming effect. These results have important implications for rhythm-based speech therapies, and suggest that metrical rhythm in music and speech may rely on shared temporal processing brain resources.

  17. Only Behavioral But Not Self-Report Measures of Speech Perception Correlate with Cognitive Abilities

    PubMed Central

    Heinrich, Antje; Henshaw, Helen; Ferguson, Melanie A.

    2016-01-01

    Good speech perception and communication skills in everyday life are crucial for participation and well-being, and are therefore an overarching aim of auditory rehabilitation. Both behavioral and self-report measures can be used to assess these skills. However, correlations between behavioral and self-report speech perception measures are often low. One possible explanation is that there is a mismatch between the specific situations used in the assessment of these skills in each method, and a more careful matching across situations might improve consistency of results. The role that cognition plays in specific speech situations may also be important for understanding communication, as speech perception tests vary in their cognitive demands. In this study, the role of executive function, working memory (WM) and attention in behavioral and self-report measures of speech perception was investigated. Thirty existing hearing aid users with mild-to-moderate hearing loss aged between 50 and 74 years completed a behavioral test battery with speech perception tests ranging from phoneme discrimination in modulated noise (easy) to words in multi-talker babble (medium) and keyword perception in a carrier sentence against a distractor voice (difficult). In addition, a self-report measure of aided communication, residual disability from the Glasgow Hearing Aid Benefit Profile, was obtained. Correlations between speech perception tests and self-report measures were higher when specific speech situations across both were matched. Cognition correlated with behavioral speech perception test results but not with self-report. Only the most difficult speech perception test, keyword perception in a carrier sentence with a competing distractor voice, engaged executive functions in addition to WM. In conclusion, any relationship between behavioral and self-report speech perception is not mediated by a shared correlation with cognition. PMID:27242564

  18. Audiovisual Speech Perception in Children with Developmental Language Disorder in Degraded Listening Conditions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Meronen, Auli; Tiippana, Kaisa; Westerholm, Jari; Ahonen, Timo

    2013-01-01

    Purpose: The effect of the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) on the perception of audiovisual speech in children with and without developmental language disorder (DLD) was investigated by varying the noise level and the sound intensity of acoustic speech. The main hypotheses were that the McGurk effect (in which incongruent visual speech alters the…

  19. Early Language Development of Children at Familial Risk of Dyslexia: Speech Perception and Production

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gerrits, Ellen; de Bree, Elise

    2009-01-01

    Speech perception and speech production were examined in 3-year-old Dutch children at familial risk of developing dyslexia. Their performance in speech sound categorisation and their production of words was compared to that of age-matched children with specific language impairment (SLI) and typically developing controls. We found that speech…

  20. Children's Perception of Speech Produced in a Two-Talker Background

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Baker, Mallory; Buss, Emily; Jacks, Adam; Taylor, Crystal; Leibold, Lori J.

    2014-01-01

    Purpose: This study evaluated the degree to which children benefit from the acoustic modifications made by talkers when they produce speech in noise. Method: A repeated measures design compared the speech perception performance of children (5-11 years) and adults in a 2-talker masker. Target speech was produced in a 2-talker background or in…

  1. Role of contextual cues on the perception of spectrally reduced interrupted speech.

    PubMed

    Patro, Chhayakanta; Mendel, Lisa Lucks

    2016-08-01

    Understanding speech within an auditory scene is constantly challenged by interfering noise in suboptimal listening environments when noise hinders the continuity of the speech stream. In such instances, a typical auditory-cognitive system perceptually integrates available speech information and "fills in" missing information in the light of semantic context. However, individuals with cochlear implants (CIs) find it difficult and effortful to understand interrupted speech compared to their normal hearing counterparts. This inefficiency in perceptual integration of speech could be attributed to further degradations in the spectral-temporal domain imposed by CIs making it difficult to utilize the contextual evidence effectively. To address these issues, 20 normal hearing adults listened to speech that was spectrally reduced and spectrally reduced interrupted in a manner similar to CI processing. The Revised Speech Perception in Noise test, which includes contextually rich and contextually poor sentences, was used to evaluate the influence of semantic context on speech perception. Results indicated that listeners benefited more from semantic context when they listened to spectrally reduced speech alone. For the spectrally reduced interrupted speech, contextual information was not as helpful under significant spectral reductions, but became beneficial as the spectral resolution improved. These results suggest top-down processing facilitates speech perception up to a point, and it fails to facilitate speech understanding when the speech signals are significantly degraded. PMID:27586760

  2. Role of contextual cues on the perception of spectrally reduced interrupted speech.

    PubMed

    Patro, Chhayakanta; Mendel, Lisa Lucks

    2016-08-01

    Understanding speech within an auditory scene is constantly challenged by interfering noise in suboptimal listening environments when noise hinders the continuity of the speech stream. In such instances, a typical auditory-cognitive system perceptually integrates available speech information and "fills in" missing information in the light of semantic context. However, individuals with cochlear implants (CIs) find it difficult and effortful to understand interrupted speech compared to their normal hearing counterparts. This inefficiency in perceptual integration of speech could be attributed to further degradations in the spectral-temporal domain imposed by CIs making it difficult to utilize the contextual evidence effectively. To address these issues, 20 normal hearing adults listened to speech that was spectrally reduced and spectrally reduced interrupted in a manner similar to CI processing. The Revised Speech Perception in Noise test, which includes contextually rich and contextually poor sentences, was used to evaluate the influence of semantic context on speech perception. Results indicated that listeners benefited more from semantic context when they listened to spectrally reduced speech alone. For the spectrally reduced interrupted speech, contextual information was not as helpful under significant spectral reductions, but became beneficial as the spectral resolution improved. These results suggest top-down processing facilitates speech perception up to a point, and it fails to facilitate speech understanding when the speech signals are significantly degraded.

  3. Noise on, Voicing off: Speech Perception Deficits in Children with Specific Language Impairment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ziegler, Johannes C.; Pech-Georgel, Catherine; George, Florence; Lorenzi, Christian

    2011-01-01

    Speech perception of four phonetic categories (voicing, place, manner, and nasality) was investigated in children with specific language impairment (SLI) (n=20) and age-matched controls (n=19) in quiet and various noise conditions using an AXB two-alternative forced-choice paradigm. Children with SLI exhibited robust speech perception deficits in…

  4. The Effect of Technology and Testing Environment on Speech Perception Using Telehealth with Cochlear Implant Recipients

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Goehring, Jenny L.; Hughes, Michelle L.; Baudhuin, Jacquelyn L.; Valente, Daniel L.; McCreery, Ryan W.; Diaz, Gina R.; Sanford, Todd; Harpster, Roger

    2012-01-01

    Purpose: In this study, the authors evaluated the effect of remote system and acoustic environment on speech perception via telehealth with cochlear implant recipients. Method: Speech perception was measured in quiet and in noise. Systems evaluated were Polycom visual concert (PVC) and a hybrid presentation system (HPS). Each system was evaluated…

  5. The Role of Broca's Area in Speech Perception: Evidence from Aphasia Revisited

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hickok, Gregory; Costanzo, Maddalena; Capasso, Rita; Miceli, Gabriele

    2011-01-01

    Motor theories of speech perception have been re-vitalized as a consequence of the discovery of mirror neurons. Some authors have even promoted a strong version of the motor theory, arguing that the motor speech system is critical for perception. Part of the evidence that is cited in favor of this claim is the observation from the early 1980s that…

  6. Audiovisual Speech Perception and Eye Gaze Behavior of Adults with Asperger Syndrome

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Saalasti, Satu; Katsyri, Jari; Tiippana, Kaisa; Laine-Hernandez, Mari; von Wendt, Lennart; Sams, Mikko

    2012-01-01

    Audiovisual speech perception was studied in adults with Asperger syndrome (AS), by utilizing the McGurk effect, in which conflicting visual articulation alters the perception of heard speech. The AS group perceived the audiovisual stimuli differently from age, sex and IQ matched controls. When a voice saying /p/ was presented with a face…

  7. The Development of the Mealings, Demuth, Dillon, and Buchholz Classroom Speech Perception Test

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mealings, Kiri T.; Demuth, Katherine; Buchholz, Jörg; Dillon, Harvey

    2015-01-01

    Purpose: Open-plan classroom styles are increasingly being adopted in Australia despite evidence that their high intrusive noise levels adversely affect learning. The aim of this study was to develop a new Australian speech perception task (the Mealings, Demuth, Dillon, and Buchholz Classroom Speech Perception Test) and use it in an open-plan…

  8. Brain structure is related to speech perception abilities in bilinguals.

    PubMed

    Burgaleta, Miguel; Baus, Cristina; Díaz, Begoña; Sebastián-Gallés, Núria

    2014-07-01

    Morphology of the human brain predicts the speed at which individuals learn to distinguish novel foreign speech sounds after laboratory training. However, little is known about the neuroanatomical basis of individual differences in speech perception when a second language (L2) has been learned in natural environments for extended periods of time. In the present study, two samples of highly proficient bilinguals were selected according to their ability to distinguish between very similar L2 sounds, either isolated (prelexical) or within words (lexical). Structural MRI was acquired and processed to estimate vertex-wise indices of cortical thickness (CT) and surface area (CSA), and the association between cortical morphology and behavioral performance was inspected. Results revealed that performance in the lexical task was negatively associated with the thickness of the left temporal cortex and angular gyrus, as well as with the surface area of the left precuneus. Our findings, consistently with previous fMRI studies, demonstrate that morphology of the reported areas is relevant for word recognition based on phonological information. Further, we discuss the possibility that increased CT and CSA in sound-to-meaning mapping regions, found for poor non-native speech sounds perceivers, would have plastically arisen after extended periods of increased functional activity during L2 exposure.

  9. Comparison of Speech Perception in Background Noise with Acceptance of Background Noise in Aided and Unaided Conditions.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nabelek, Anna K.; Tampas, Joanna W.; Burchfield, Samuel B.

    2004-01-01

    l, speech perception in noiseBackground noise is a significant factor influencing hearing-aid satisfaction and is a major reason for rejection of hearing aids. Attempts have been made by previous researchers to relate the use of hearing aids to speech perception in noise (SPIN), with an expectation of improved speech perception followed by an…

  10. How the demographic makeup of our community influences speech perception.

    PubMed

    Lev-Ari, Shiri; Peperkamp, Sharon

    2016-06-01

    Speech perception is known to be influenced by listeners' expectations of the speaker. This paper tests whether the demographic makeup of individuals' communities can influence their perception of foreign sounds by influencing their expectations of the language. Using online experiments with participants from all across the U.S. and matched census data on the proportion of Spanish and other foreign language speakers in participants' communities, this paper shows that the demographic makeup of individuals' communities influences their expectations of foreign languages to have an alveolar trill versus a tap (Experiment 1), as well as their consequent perception of these sounds (Experiment 2). Thus, the paper shows that while individuals' expectations of foreign language to have a trill occasionally lead them to misperceive a tap in a foreign language as a trill, a higher proportion of non-trill language speakers in one's community decreases this likelihood. These results show that individuals' environment can influence their perception by shaping their linguistic expectations. PMID:27369129

  11. How may the basal ganglia contribute to auditory categorization and speech perception?

    PubMed Central

    Lim, Sung-Joo; Fiez, Julie A.; Holt, Lori L.

    2014-01-01

    Listeners must accomplish two complementary perceptual feats in extracting a message from speech. They must discriminate linguistically-relevant acoustic variability and generalize across irrelevant variability. Said another way, they must categorize speech. Since the mapping of acoustic variability is language-specific, these categories must be learned from experience. Thus, understanding how, in general, the auditory system acquires and represents categories can inform us about the toolbox of mechanisms available to speech perception. This perspective invites consideration of findings from cognitive neuroscience literatures outside of the speech domain as a means of constraining models of speech perception. Although neurobiological models of speech perception have mainly focused on cerebral cortex, research outside the speech domain is consistent with the possibility of significant subcortical contributions in category learning. Here, we review the functional role of one such structure, the basal ganglia. We examine research from animal electrophysiology, human neuroimaging, and behavior to consider characteristics of basal ganglia processing that may be advantageous for speech category learning. We also present emerging evidence for a direct role for basal ganglia in learning auditory categories in a complex, naturalistic task intended to model the incidental manner in which speech categories are acquired. To conclude, we highlight new research questions that arise in incorporating the broader neuroscience research literature in modeling speech perception, and suggest how understanding contributions of the basal ganglia can inform attempts to optimize training protocols for learning non-native speech categories in adulthood. PMID:25136291

  12. Using TMS to study the role of the articulatory motor system in speech perception

    PubMed Central

    Möttönen, Riikka; Watkins, Kate E.

    2011-01-01

    Background: The ability to communicate using speech is a remarkable skill, which requires precise coordination of articulatory movements and decoding of complex acoustic signals. According to the traditional view, speech production and perception rely on motor and auditory brain areas, respectively. However, there is growing evidence that auditory-motor circuits support both speech production and perception. Aims: In this article we provide a review of how transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) has been used to investigate the excitability of the motor system during listening to speech and the contribution of the motor system to performance in various speech perception tasks. We also discuss how TMS can be used in combination with brain-imaging techniques to study interactions between motor and auditory systems during speech perception. Main contribution: TMS has proven to be a powerful tool to investigate the role of the articulatory motor system in speech perception. Conclusions: TMS studies have provided support for the view that the motor structures that control the movements of the articulators contribute not only to speech production but also to speech perception. PMID:22942513

  13. Cerebellum and speech perception: a functional magnetic resonance imaging study.

    PubMed

    Mathiak, Klaus; Hertrich, Ingo; Grodd, Wolfgang; Ackermann, Hermann

    2002-08-15

    A variety of data indicate that the cerebellum participates in perceptual tasks requiring the precise representation of temporal information. Access to the word form of a lexical item requires, among other functions, the processing of durational parameters of verbal utterances. Therefore, cerebellar dysfunctions must be expected to impair word recognition. In order to specify the topography of the assumed cerebellar speech perception mechanism, a functional magnetic resonance imaging study was performed using the German lexical items "Boden" ([bodn], Engl. "floor") and "Boten" ([botn], "messengers") as test materials. The contrast in sound structure of these two lexical items can be signaled either by the length of the wordmedial pause (closure time, CLT; an exclusively temporal measure) or by the aspiration noise of wordmedial "d" or "t" (voice onset time, VOT; an intrasegmental cue). A previous study found bilateral cerebellar disorders to compromise word recognition based on CLT whereas the encoding of VOT remained unimpaired. In the present study, two series of "Boden - Boten" utterances were resynthesized, systematically varying either in CLT or VOT. Subjects had to identify both words "Boden" and "Boten" by analysis of either the durational parameter CLT or the VOT aspiration segment. In a subtraction design, CLT categorization as compared to VOT identification (CLT - VOT) yielded a significant hemodynamic response of the right cerebellar hemisphere (neocerebellum Crus I) and the frontal lobe (anterior to Broca's area). The reversed contrast ( VOT - CLT) resulted in a single activation cluster located at the level of the supratemporal plane of the dominant hemisphere. These findings provide first evidence for a distinct contribution of the right cerebellar hemisphere to speech perception in terms of encoding of durational parameters of verbal utterances. Verbal working memory tasks, lexical response selection, and auditory imagery of word strings have been

  14. Effects of sounds of locomotion on speech perception.

    PubMed

    Larsson, Matz; Ekström, Seth Reino; Ranjbar, Parivash

    2015-01-01

    Human locomotion typically creates noise, a possible consequence of which is the masking of sound signals originating in the surroundings. When walking side by side, people often subconsciously synchronize their steps. The neurophysiological and evolutionary background of this behavior is unclear. The present study investigated the potential of sound created by walking to mask perception of speech and compared the masking produced by walking in step with that produced by unsynchronized walking. The masking sound (footsteps on gravel) and the target sound (speech) were presented through the same speaker to 15 normal-hearing subjects. The original recorded walking sound was modified to mimic the sound of two individuals walking in pace or walking out of synchrony. The participants were instructed to adjust the sound level of the target sound until they could just comprehend the speech signal ("just follow conversation" or JFC level) when presented simultaneously with synchronized or unsynchronized walking sound at 40 dBA, 50 dBA, 60 dBA, or 70 dBA. Synchronized walking sounds produced slightly less masking of speech than did unsynchronized sound. The median JFC threshold in the synchronized condition was 38.5 dBA, while the corresponding value for the unsynchronized condition was 41.2 dBA. Combined results at all sound pressure levels showed an improvement in the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) for synchronized footsteps; the median difference was 2.7 dB and the mean difference was 1.2 dB [P < 0.001, repeated-measures analysis of variance (RM-ANOVA)]. The difference was significant for masker levels of 50 dBA and 60 dBA, but not for 40 dBA or 70 dBA. This study provides evidence that synchronized walking may reduce the masking potential of footsteps. PMID:26168953

  15. Effects of sounds of locomotion on speech perception

    PubMed Central

    Larsson, Matz; Ekström, Seth Reino; Ranjbar, Parivash

    2015-01-01

    Human locomotion typically creates noise, a possible consequence of which is the masking of sound signals originating in the surroundings. When walking side by side, people often subconsciously synchronize their steps. The neurophysiological and evolutionary background of this behavior is unclear. The present study investigated the potential of sound created by walking to mask perception of speech and compared the masking produced by walking in step with that produced by unsynchronized walking. The masking sound (footsteps on gravel) and the target sound (speech) were presented through the same speaker to 15 normal-hearing subjects. The original recorded walking sound was modified to mimic the sound of two individuals walking in pace or walking out of synchrony. The participants were instructed to adjust the sound level of the target sound until they could just comprehend the speech signal (“just follow conversation” or JFC level) when presented simultaneously with synchronized or unsynchronized walking sound at 40 dBA, 50 dBA, 60 dBA, or 70 dBA. Synchronized walking sounds produced slightly less masking of speech than did unsynchronized sound. The median JFC threshold in the synchronized condition was 38.5 dBA, while the corresponding value for the unsynchronized condition was 41.2 dBA. Combined results at all sound pressure levels showed an improvement in the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) for synchronized footsteps; the median difference was 2.7 dB and the mean difference was 1.2 dB [P < 0.001, repeated-measures analysis of variance (RM-ANOVA)]. The difference was significant for masker levels of 50 dBA and 60 dBA, but not for 40 dBA or 70 dBA. This study provides evidence that synchronized walking may reduce the masking potential of footsteps. PMID:26168953

  16. Infant perception of audio-visual speech synchrony in familiar and unfamiliar fluent speech.

    PubMed

    Pons, Ferran; Lewkowicz, David J

    2014-06-01

    We investigated the effects of linguistic experience and language familiarity on the perception of audio-visual (A-V) synchrony in fluent speech. In Experiment 1, we tested a group of monolingual Spanish- and Catalan-learning 8-month-old infants to a video clip of a person speaking Spanish. Following habituation to the audiovisually synchronous video, infants saw and heard desynchronized clips of the same video where the audio stream now preceded the video stream by 366, 500, or 666 ms. In Experiment 2, monolingual Catalan and Spanish infants were tested with a video clip of a person speaking English. Results indicated that in both experiments, infants detected a 666 and a 500 ms asynchrony. That is, their responsiveness to A-V synchrony was the same regardless of their specific linguistic experience or familiarity with the tested language. Compared to previous results from infant studies with isolated audiovisual syllables, these results show that infants are more sensitive to A-V temporal relations inherent in fluent speech. Furthermore, the absence of a language familiarity effect on the detection of A-V speech asynchrony at eight months of age is consistent with the broad perceptual tuning usually observed in infant response to linguistic input at this age.

  17. Spatiotemporal convergence of semantic processing in reading and speech perception.

    PubMed

    Vartiainen, Johanna; Parviainen, Tiina; Salmelin, Riitta

    2009-07-22

    Retrieval of word meaning from the semantic system and its integration with context are often assumed to be shared by spoken and written words. How is modality-independent semantic processing manifested in the brain, spatially and temporally? Time-sensitive neuroimaging allows tracking of neural activation sequences. Use of semantically related versus unrelated word pairs or sentences ending with a semantically highly or less plausible word, in separate studies of the auditory and visual modality, has associated lexical-semantic analysis with sustained activation at approximately 200-800 ms. Magnetoencephalography (MEG) studies have further identified the superior temporal cortex as a main locus of the semantic effect. Nevertheless, a direct comparison of the spatiotemporal neural correlates of visual and auditory word comprehension in the same brain is lacking. We used MEG to compare lexical-semantic analysis in the visual and auditory domain in the same individuals, and contrasted it with phonological analysis that, according to models of language perception, should occur at a different time with respect to semantic analysis in reading and speech perception. The stimuli were lists of four words that were either semantically or phonologically related, or with the final word unrelated to the preceding context. Superior temporal activation reflecting semantic processing occurred similarly in the two modalities, left-lateralized at 300-450 ms and thereafter bilaterally, generated in close-by areas. Effect of phonology preceded the semantic effect in speech perception but not in reading. The present data indicate involvement of the middle superior temporal cortex in semantic processing from approximately 300 ms onwards, regardless of input modality.

  18. Beyond production: Brain responses during speech perception in adults who stutter.

    PubMed

    Halag-Milo, Tali; Stoppelman, Nadav; Kronfeld-Duenias, Vered; Civier, Oren; Amir, Ofer; Ezrati-Vinacour, Ruth; Ben-Shachar, Michal

    2016-01-01

    Developmental stuttering is a speech disorder that disrupts the ability to produce speech fluently. While stuttering is typically diagnosed based on one's behavior during speech production, some models suggest that it involves more central representations of language, and thus may affect language perception as well. Here we tested the hypothesis that developmental stuttering implicates neural systems involved in language perception, in a task that manipulates comprehensibility without an overt speech production component. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging to measure blood oxygenation level dependent (BOLD) signals in adults who do and do not stutter, while they were engaged in an incidental speech perception task. We found that speech perception evokes stronger activation in adults who stutter (AWS) compared to controls, specifically in the right inferior frontal gyrus (RIFG) and in left Heschl's gyrus (LHG). Significant differences were additionally found in the lateralization of response in the inferior frontal cortex: AWS showed bilateral inferior frontal activity, while controls showed a left lateralized pattern of activation. These findings suggest that developmental stuttering is associated with an imbalanced neural network for speech processing, which is not limited to speech production, but also affects cortical responses during speech perception. PMID:27298762

  19. On the perception/production interface in speech processing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hemphill, Rachel Marie

    1999-10-01

    In a series of five experiments, the author tests the hypothesis that speech processing in the human mind demands two separate phonological representations: one for perception and one for production (Menn 1980, 1983; Straight 1980; Menn & Matthei 1992). The experiments probe the structure and of these mental categories and how they change in the process of acquisition. Three groups of native English-speaking subjects were taught to categorically perceive a three way Thai voicing contrast in synthetic bilabial stop consonants, which varied only in VOT (after Pisoni, Aslin, Perey, and Hennessy 1982). Perception and production tests were administered following training. Subjects showed the ability, which improved with training, to categorically identify the three-way voicing contrast. Subsequent acoustic and perceptual analyses showed that they were unable to produce the contrast correctly, producing no difference, or manipulating acoustic variables other than VOT (vowel duration, vowel quality, nasalization, etc.). When subjects' productions were compared to their pronunciations of English labial stops, it was found that subjects construct a new production category for the Thai prevoiced stop category. In contrast, subjects split their existing English perceptual /b/ category, indicating that perceptual and production phonological categories do not change in parallel. In a subsequent experiment, subjects were re-tested on perception of the synthetic stimuli, productions of two native Thai speakers, and on their own productions from the previous experiments. An analysis of the perceptual data shows that subjects performed equally well on the four tasks, indicating that they are no better at identifying their own productions than those of novel talkers or synthetic talkers. This finding contradicts the hypothetical direct link between perception and production phonologies. These results are explained in terms of separate expressive and receptive representations and the

  20. Speech perception and lexical effects in specific language impairment

    PubMed Central

    Schwartz, Richard G.; Scheffler, Frances L. V.; Lopez, Karece

    2014-01-01

    Using an identification task, we examined lexical effects on the perception of vowel duration as a cue to final consonant voicing in 12 children with specific language impairment (SLI) and 13 age-matched (6;6–9;6) peers with typical language development (TLD). Naturally recorded CV/t/sets [word–word (WW), nonword–nonword (NN), word–nonword (WN) and nonword–word (NW)] were edited to create four 12-step continua. Both groups used duration as an identification cue but it was a weaker cue for children with SLI. For NN, WN and NW continua, children with SLI demonstrated certainty at shorter vowel durations than their TLD peers. Except for the WN continuum, children with SLI demonstrated category boundaries at shorter vowel durations. Both groups exhibited lexical effects, but they were stronger in the SLI group. Performance on the WW continuum indicated adequate perception of fine-grained duration differences. Strong lexical effects indicated reliance on familiar words in speech perception. PMID:23635335

  1. Auditory Speech Perception Tests in Relation to the Coding Strategy in Cochlear Implant

    PubMed Central

    Bazon, Aline Cristine; Mantello, Erika Barioni; Gonçales, Alina Sanches; Isaac, Myriam de Lima; Hyppolito, Miguel Angelo; Reis, Ana Cláudia Mirândola Barbosa

    2015-01-01

    Introduction  The objective of the evaluation of auditory perception of cochlear implant users is to determine how the acoustic signal is processed, leading to the recognition and understanding of sound. Objective  To investigate the differences in the process of auditory speech perception in individuals with postlingual hearing loss wearing a cochlear implant, using two different speech coding strategies, and to analyze speech perception and handicap perception in relation to the strategy used. Methods  This study is prospective cross-sectional cohort study of a descriptive character. We selected ten cochlear implant users that were characterized by hearing threshold by the application of speech perception tests and of the Hearing Handicap Inventory for Adults. Results  There was no significant difference when comparing the variables subject age, age at acquisition of hearing loss, etiology, time of hearing deprivation, time of cochlear implant use and mean hearing threshold with the cochlear implant with the shift in speech coding strategy. There was no relationship between lack of handicap perception and improvement in speech perception in both speech coding strategies used. Conclusion  There was no significant difference between the strategies evaluated and no relation was observed between them and the variables studied. PMID:27413409

  2. No evidence of relation between working memory and perception of interrupted speech in young adults.

    PubMed

    Nagaraj, Naveen K; Knapp, Andrea N

    2015-08-01

    Understanding interrupted speech requires top-down linguistic and cognitive restoration mechanisms. To investigate the relation between working memory (WM) and perception of interrupted speech, 20 young adults were asked to recognize sentences interrupted at 2 Hz, 8 Hz, and a combination of 2 and 8 Hz. WM was measured using automated reading and operation span tasks. Interestingly, the results presented here revealed no statistical relation between any of the interrupted speech recognition scores and WM scores. This finding is in agreement with previous findings that suggest greater reliance on linguistic factors relative to cognitive factors during perception of interrupted speech. PMID:26328740

  3. Perceptual discontinuities and categorization: Implications for speech perception

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holt, Lori L.; Lotto, Andrew J.; Diehl, Randy L.

    2003-04-01

    Behavioral experiments with infants, adults and nonhuman animals converge with neurophysiological findings to suggest that there is a discontinuity in auditory processing of stimulus components differing in onset time by about 20 ms. This discontinuity has been implicated as a basis for boundaries between speech categories distinguished by VOT. Here, we investigate how this discontinuity interacts with the learning of novel perceptual categories. Adult listeners were trained to categorize a nonspeech acoustic cue that mimics the temporal distinction of VOT. One group of listeners learned categories with a boundary coincident with the perceptual discontinuity. Another group learned categories defined such that the perceptual discontinuity fell within a category. Listeners in the latter group required significantly more experience to reach criterion categorization performance. The evidence of interactions between the perceptual discontinuity and the learned categories extended to generalization tests as well. It has been hypothesized that languages make use of perceptual discontinuities to promote perceptual distinctiveness among sounds within a language inventory. The present data suggest that these influences interact with category learning. As such, learnability may play a predictive role in selection of language sound inventories. Moreover, it may be possible to observe predictable learning effects in infant speech perception.

  4. Speech perception and functional benefit after multichannel cochlear implantation.

    PubMed

    Välimaa, T T; Sorri, M J; Löppönen, H J

    2001-01-01

    This study was done to investigate the effect of a multichannel cochlear implant on speech perception and the functional benefit of cochlear implantation in Finnish-speaking postlingually deafened adults. Fourteen subjects were enrolled. Sentence and word recognition were studied with open-set tests auditorily only. One year after implantation, the listening performance was assessed by case histories and interviews. Before implantation for subjects with a hearing aid, the mean recognition score was 38% for sentences and 17% for words. One year after switching on the implant, the mean recognition score was 84% for sentences and 70% for words. Before implantation, the majority of the subjects were not aware of environmental sounds and only a few were able to recognize some environmental sounds. One year after switching on the implant, the majority of the subjects were able to use the telephone with a familiar speaker. All the subjects were able to recognize speech auditorily only and had thus gained good functional benefit from the implant.

  5. A limit on behavioral plasticity in speech perception.

    PubMed

    Pallier, C; Bosch, L; Sebastián-Gallés, N

    1997-09-01

    It is well attested that we perceive speech through the filter of our native language: a classic example is that of Japanese listeners who cannot discriminate between the American /l/ and /r/ and identify both as their own /r/ phoneme (Goto. H., 1971. Neuropsychologia 9, 317-323.). Studies in the laboratory have shown, however, that perception of non-native speech sounds can be learned through training (Lively, S.E., Pisoni, D.B., Yamada, R.A., Tohkura, Y.I., Yamada, T., 1994. Journal of the Acoustical Society of America 96 (4), 2076-2087). This is consistent with neurophysiological evidence showing considerable experience-dependent plasticity in the brain at the first levels of sensory processing (Edeline, J.-M., Weinberger, N.M., 1993. Behavioral Neuroscience 107, 82-103; Merzenich, M.M., Sameshima, K., 1993. Current Opinion in Neurobiology 3, 187-196; Weinberger, N.M., 1993. Current Opinion in Neurobiology 3, 577-579; Kraus, N., McGee, T., Carrel, T.D., King, C., Tremblay, K., Nicol, T., 1995. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience 7 (1), 25-32). Outside of the laboratory, however, the situation seems to differ: we here report is study involving Spanish-Catalan bilingual subjects who have had the best opportunities to learn a new contrast but did not do it. Our study demonstrates a striking lack of behavioral plasticity: early and extensive exposure to a second language is not sufficient to attain the ultimate phonological competence of native speakers.

  6. The influence of task on gaze during audiovisual speech perception

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buchan, Julie; Paré, Martin; Yurick, Micheal; Munhall, Kevin

    2001-05-01

    In natural conversation, visual and auditory information about speech not only provide linguistic information but also provide information about the identity and the emotional state of the speaker. Thus, listeners must process a wide range of information in parallel to understand the full meaning in a message. In this series of studies, we examined how different types of visual information conveyed by a speaker's face are processed by measuring the gaze patterns exhibited by subjects watching audiovisual recordings of spoken sentences. In three experiments, subjects were asked to judge the emotion and the identity of the speaker, and to report the words that they heard under different auditory conditions. As in previous studies, eye and mouth regions dominated the distribution of the gaze fixations. It was hypothesized that the eyes would attract more fixations for more social judgment tasks, rather than tasks which rely more on verbal comprehension. Our results support this hypothesis. In addition, the location of gaze on the face did not influence the accuracy of the perception of speech in noise.

  7. The relationship of phonological ability, speech perception, and auditory perception in adults with dyslexia.

    PubMed

    Law, Jeremy M; Vandermosten, Maaike; Ghesquiere, Pol; Wouters, Jan

    2014-01-01

    This study investigated whether auditory, speech perception, and phonological skills are tightly interrelated or independently contributing to reading. We assessed each of these three skills in 36 adults with a past diagnosis of dyslexia and 54 matched normal reading adults. Phonological skills were tested by the typical threefold tasks, i.e., rapid automatic naming, verbal short-term memory and phonological awareness. Dynamic auditory processing skills were assessed by means of a frequency modulation (FM) and an amplitude rise time (RT); an intensity discrimination task (ID) was included as a non-dynamic control task. Speech perception was assessed by means of sentences and words-in-noise tasks. Group analyses revealed significant group differences in auditory tasks (i.e., RT and ID) and in phonological processing measures, yet no differences were found for speech perception. In addition, performance on RT discrimination correlated with reading but this relation was mediated by phonological processing and not by speech-in-noise. Finally, inspection of the individual scores revealed that the dyslexic readers showed an increased proportion of deviant subjects on the slow-dynamic auditory and phonological tasks, yet each individual dyslexic reader does not display a clear pattern of deficiencies across the processing skills. Although our results support phonological and slow-rate dynamic auditory deficits which relate to literacy, they suggest that at the individual level, problems in reading and writing cannot be explained by the cascading auditory theory. Instead, dyslexic adults seem to vary considerably in the extent to which each of the auditory and phonological factors are expressed and interact with environmental and higher-order cognitive influences. PMID:25071512

  8. The relationship of phonological ability, speech perception, and auditory perception in adults with dyslexia.

    PubMed

    Law, Jeremy M; Vandermosten, Maaike; Ghesquiere, Pol; Wouters, Jan

    2014-01-01

    This study investigated whether auditory, speech perception, and phonological skills are tightly interrelated or independently contributing to reading. We assessed each of these three skills in 36 adults with a past diagnosis of dyslexia and 54 matched normal reading adults. Phonological skills were tested by the typical threefold tasks, i.e., rapid automatic naming, verbal short-term memory and phonological awareness. Dynamic auditory processing skills were assessed by means of a frequency modulation (FM) and an amplitude rise time (RT); an intensity discrimination task (ID) was included as a non-dynamic control task. Speech perception was assessed by means of sentences and words-in-noise tasks. Group analyses revealed significant group differences in auditory tasks (i.e., RT and ID) and in phonological processing measures, yet no differences were found for speech perception. In addition, performance on RT discrimination correlated with reading but this relation was mediated by phonological processing and not by speech-in-noise. Finally, inspection of the individual scores revealed that the dyslexic readers showed an increased proportion of deviant subjects on the slow-dynamic auditory and phonological tasks, yet each individual dyslexic reader does not display a clear pattern of deficiencies across the processing skills. Although our results support phonological and slow-rate dynamic auditory deficits which relate to literacy, they suggest that at the individual level, problems in reading and writing cannot be explained by the cascading auditory theory. Instead, dyslexic adults seem to vary considerably in the extent to which each of the auditory and phonological factors are expressed and interact with environmental and higher-order cognitive influences.

  9. Functional correlates of the speech-in-noise perception impairment in dyslexia: an MRI study.

    PubMed

    Dole, Marjorie; Meunier, Fanny; Hoen, Michel

    2014-07-01

    Dyslexia is a language-based neurodevelopmental disorder. It is characterized as a persistent deficit in reading and spelling. These difficulties have been shown to result from an underlying impairment of the phonological component of language, possibly also affecting speech perception. Although there is little evidence for such a deficit under optimal, quiet listening conditions, speech perception difficulties in adults with dyslexia are often reported under more challenging conditions, such as when speech is masked by noise. Previous studies have shown that these difficulties are more pronounced when the background noise is speech and when little spatial information is available to facilitate differentiation between target and background sound sources. In this study, we investigated the neuroimaging correlates of speech-in-speech perception in typical readers and participants with dyslexia, focusing on the effects of different listening configurations. Fourteen adults with dyslexia and 14 matched typical readers performed a subjective intelligibility rating test with single words presented against concurrent speech during functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) scanning. Target words were always presented with a four-talker background in one of three listening configurations: Dichotic, Binaural or Monaural. The results showed that in the Monaural configuration, in which no spatial information was available and energetic masking was maximal, intelligibility was severely decreased in all participants, and this effect was particularly strong in participants with dyslexia. Functional imaging revealed that in this configuration, participants partially compensate for their poorer listening abilities by recruiting several areas in the cerebral networks engaged in speech perception. In the Binaural configuration, participants with dyslexia achieved the same performance level as typical readers, suggesting that they were able to use spatial information when available

  10. The role of abstraction in non-native speech perception

    PubMed Central

    Pajak, Bozena; Levy, Roger

    2014-01-01

    The end-result of perceptual reorganization in infancy is currently viewed as a reconfigured perceptual space, “warped” around native-language phonetic categories, which then acts as a direct perceptual filter on any non-native sounds: naïve-listener discrimination of non-native-sounds is determined by their mapping onto native-language phonetic categories that are acoustically/articulatorily most similar. We report results that suggest another factor in non-native speech perception: some perceptual sensitivities cannot be attributed to listeners’ warped perceptual space alone, but rather to enhanced general sensitivity along phonetic dimensions that the listeners’ native language employs to distinguish between categories. Specifically, we show that the knowledge of a language with short and long vowel categories leads to enhanced discrimination of non-native consonant length contrasts. We argue that these results support a view of perceptual reorganization as the consequence of learners’ hierarchical inductive inferences about the structure of the language’s sound system: infants not only acquire the specific phonetic category inventory, but also draw higher-order generalizations over the set of those categories, such as the overall informativity of phonetic dimensions for sound categorization. Non-native sound perception is then also determined by sensitivities that emerge from these generalizations, rather than only by mappings of non-native sounds onto native-language phonetic categories. PMID:25197153

  11. Speech perception under adverse conditions: insights from behavioral, computational, and neuroscience research

    PubMed Central

    Guediche, Sara; Blumstein, Sheila E.; Fiez, Julie A.; Holt, Lori L.

    2014-01-01

    Adult speech perception reflects the long-term regularities of the native language, but it is also flexible such that it accommodates and adapts to adverse listening conditions and short-term deviations from native-language norms. The purpose of this article is to examine how the broader neuroscience literature can inform and advance research efforts in understanding the neural basis of flexibility and adaptive plasticity in speech perception. Specifically, we highlight the potential role of learning algorithms that rely on prediction error signals and discuss specific neural structures that are likely to contribute to such learning. To this end, we review behavioral studies, computational accounts, and neuroimaging findings related to adaptive plasticity in speech perception. Already, a few studies have alluded to a potential role of these mechanisms in adaptive plasticity in speech perception. Furthermore, we consider research topics in neuroscience that offer insight into how perception can be adaptively tuned to short-term deviations while balancing the need to maintain stability in the perception of learned long-term regularities. Consideration of the application and limitations of these algorithms in characterizing flexible speech perception under adverse conditions promises to inform theoretical models of speech. PMID:24427119

  12. Speech Perception Benefits of FM and Infrared Devices to Children with Hearing Aids in a Typical Classroom

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Anderson, Karen L.; Goldstein, Howard

    2004-01-01

    Children typically learn in classroom environments that have background noise and reverberation that interfere with accurate speech perception. Amplification technology can enhance the speech perception of students who are hard of hearing. Purpose: This study used a single-subject alternating treatments design to compare the speech recognition…

  13. The advantages of sound localization and speech perception of bilateral electric acoustic stimulation

    PubMed Central

    Moteki, Hideaki; Kitoh, Ryosuke; Tsukada, Keita; Iwasaki, Satoshi; Nishio, Shin-Ya

    2015-01-01

    Conclusion: Bilateral electric acoustic stimulation (EAS) effectively improved speech perception in noise and sound localization in patients with high-frequency hearing loss. Objective: To evaluate bilateral EAS efficacy of sound localization detection and speech perception in noise in two cases of high-frequency hearing loss. Methods: Two female patients, aged 38 and 45 years, respectively, received bilateral EAS sequentially. Pure-tone audiometry was performed preoperatively and postoperatively to evaluate the hearing preservation in the lower frequencies. Speech perception outcomes in quiet and noise and sound localization were assessed with unilateral and bilateral EAS. Results: Residual hearing in the lower frequencies was well preserved after insertion of a FLEX24 electrode (24 mm) using the round window approach. After bilateral EAS, speech perception improved in quiet and even more so in noise. In addition, the sound localization ability of both cases with bilateral EAS improved remarkably. PMID:25423260

  14. Language/Culture Modulates Brain and Gaze Processes in Audiovisual Speech Perception

    PubMed Central

    Hisanaga, Satoko; Sekiyama, Kaoru; Igasaki, Tomohiko; Murayama, Nobuki

    2016-01-01

    Several behavioural studies have shown that the interplay between voice and face information in audiovisual speech perception is not universal. Native English speakers (ESs) are influenced by visual mouth movement to a greater degree than native Japanese speakers (JSs) when listening to speech. However, the biological basis of these group differences is unknown. Here, we demonstrate the time-varying processes of group differences in terms of event-related brain potentials (ERP) and eye gaze for audiovisual and audio-only speech perception. On a behavioural level, while congruent mouth movement shortened the ESs’ response time for speech perception, the opposite effect was observed in JSs. Eye-tracking data revealed a gaze bias to the mouth for the ESs but not the JSs, especially before the audio onset. Additionally, the ERP P2 amplitude indicated that ESs processed multisensory speech more efficiently than auditory-only speech; however, the JSs exhibited the opposite pattern. Taken together, the ESs’ early visual attention to the mouth was likely to promote phonetic anticipation, which was not the case for the JSs. These results clearly indicate the impact of language and/or culture on multisensory speech processing, suggesting that linguistic/cultural experiences lead to the development of unique neural systems for audiovisual speech perception. PMID:27734953

  15. Categorical Speech Perception Deficits Distinguish Language and Reading Impairments in Children

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Robertson, Erin K.; Joanisse, Marc F.; Desroches, Amy S.; Ng, Stella

    2009-01-01

    We examined categorical speech perception in school-age children with developmental dyslexia or Specific Language Impairment (SLI), compared to age-matched and younger controls. Stimuli consisted of synthetic speech tokens in which place of articulation varied from "b" to "d". Children were tested on categorization, categorization in noise, and…

  16. The Acquisition of Consonant Clusters by Japanese Learners of English: Interactions of Speech Perception and Production

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sperbeck, Mieko

    2010-01-01

    The primary aim of this dissertation was to investigate the relationship between speech perception and speech production difficulties among Japanese second language (L2) learners of English, in their learning complex syllable structures. Japanese L2 learners and American English controls were tested in a categorical ABX discrimination task of…

  17. Compensation for Coarticulation: Disentangling Auditory and Gestural Theories of Perception of Coarticulatory Effects in Speech

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Viswanathan, Navin; Magnuson, James S.; Fowler, Carol A.

    2010-01-01

    According to one approach to speech perception, listeners perceive speech by applying general pattern matching mechanisms to the acoustic signal (e.g., Diehl, Lotto, & Holt, 2004). An alternative is that listeners perceive the phonetic gestures that structured the acoustic signal (e.g., Fowler, 1986). The two accounts have offered different…

  18. Speech Perception for Adults Who Use Hearing Aids in Conjunction with Cochlear Implants in Opposite Ears

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mok, Mansze; Grayden, David; Dowell, Richard C.; Lawrence, David

    2006-01-01

    This study aimed to (a) investigate the effect of using a hearing aid in conjunction with a cochlear implant in opposite ears on speech perception in quiet and in noise, (b) identify the speech information obtained from a hearing aid that is additive to the information obtained from a cochlear implant, and (c) explore the relationship between…

  19. Hearing Aid-Induced Plasticity in the Auditory System of Older Adults: Evidence from Speech Perception

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lavie, Limor; Banai, Karen; Karni, Avi; Attias, Joseph

    2015-01-01

    Purpose: We tested whether using hearing aids can improve unaided performance in speech perception tasks in older adults with hearing impairment. Method: Unaided performance was evaluated in dichotic listening and speech-­in-­noise tests in 47 older adults with hearing impairment; 36 participants in 3 study groups were tested before hearing aid…

  20. Effects of Speech Style and Sex of Speaker on Person Perception.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Newcombe, Nora; Arnkoff, Diane B.

    1979-01-01

    Two experiments examined Lakoff's suggestion that men and women use different speech styles (women's speech being more polite and less assertive than men's). The effects of undergraduate students' use of three linguistic variables (tag questions, qualifiers, and compound requests) on person perception was tested. (CM)

  1. Effects of Real-Time Cochlear Implant Simulation on Speech Perception and Production

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Casserly, Elizabeth D.

    2013-01-01

    Real-time use of spoken language is a fundamentally interactive process involving speech perception, speech production, linguistic competence, motor control, neurocognitive abilities such as working memory, attention, and executive function, environmental noise, conversational context, and--critically--the communicative interaction between…

  2. Prosody and Semantics Are Separate but Not Separable Channels in the Perception of Emotional Speech: Test for Rating of Emotions in Speech

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ben-David, Boaz M.; Multani, Namita; Shakuf, Vered; Rudzicz, Frank; van Lieshout, Pascal H. H. M.

    2016-01-01

    Purpose: Our aim is to explore the complex interplay of prosody (tone of speech) and semantics (verbal content) in the perception of discrete emotions in speech. Method: We implement a novel tool, the Test for Rating of Emotions in Speech. Eighty native English speakers were presented with spoken sentences made of different combinations of 5…

  3. Auditory brainstem measures predict reading and speech-in-noise perception in school-aged children.

    PubMed

    Hornickel, Jane; Chandrasekaran, Bharath; Zecker, Steve; Kraus, Nina

    2011-01-20

    Reading and speech-in-noise perception, fundamental aspects of human communication, have been linked to neural indices of auditory brainstem function. However, how these factors interact is currently unclear. Multivariate analysis methods (structural equation modeling) were employed to delineate and quantify the relationships among factors that relate to successful reading and speech in noise perception in children. Neural measures of subcortical speech encoding that reflect the utilization of stimulus regularities, differentiation of stop consonants, and robustness of neural synchrony predicted 73% of the variance in reading scores. A different combination of neural measures, specifically, utilization of stimulus regularities, strength of encoding of lower harmonics, and the extent of noise-induced timing delays uniquely predicted 56% of the variance in speech-in-noise perception measures. The neural measures relating to reading and speech-in-noise perception were substantially non-overlapping and resulted in poor fitting models when substituted for each other, thereby suggesting distinct neural signatures for the two skills. When phonological processing and working memory measures were added to the models, brainstem measures still uniquely predicted variance in reading ability and speech-in-noise perception, highlighting the robustness of the relationship between subcortical auditory function and these skills. The current study suggests that objective neural markers may prove valuable in the assessment of reading or speech-in-noise abilities in children.

  4. Separating Contributions of Hearing, Lexical Knowledge, and Speech Production to Speech-Perception Scores in Children with Hearing Impairments.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Paatsch, Louise E.; Blamey, Peter J.; Sarant, Julia Z.; Martin, Lois F.A.; Bow, Catherine P.

    2004-01-01

    Open-set word and sentence speech-perception test scores are commonly used as a measure of hearing abilities in children and adults using cochlear implants and/or hearing aids. These tests ore usually presented auditorily with a verbal response. In the case of children, scores are typically lower and more variable than for adults with hearing…

  5. Relation between Phonological Processing, Auditory Processing and Speech Perception among Bilingual Poor Readers

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Background and Objectives A deficit in phonological processing abilities has been hypothesized as a cause of reading deficits among poor readers, but the precise etiology of this deficit is still unknown. Many studies have investigated the relation of auditory processing and speech perception with phonological processing, while the relation between these are not well understood. Thus, the present study was carried out to investigate the relation between these abilities among poor readers. Subjects and Methods A total of 20 children between 7-12 years of age participated in the study. Among these 10 were typically developing children and 10 were poor readers. Auditory processing, speech perception in noise and phonological processing skills were assessed in both the groups. Results Auditory processing was not significantly different between children in both the groups. In contrast, phonological awareness, verbal short-term memory and rapid automatized naming, which reflect phonological processing, and speech perception in noise were found to be significantly affected in poor readers. In addition, the results showed a significant correlation between phonological processing and speech perception in noise. Conclusions The present study found a significant relationship between speech perception in noise and phonological processing, while there was no relationship between auditory processing and phonological processing. This finding suggests that poor speech perception among poor readers may be one of the contributing factors for phonological processing deficits, which in turn leads to reading difficulties. PMID:26771010

  6. Left Posterior Auditory-Related Cortices Participate Both in Speech Perception and Speech Production: Neural Overlap Revealed by fMRI

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Okada, Kayoko; Hickok, Gregory

    2006-01-01

    Recent neuroimaging studies and neuropsychological data suggest that there are regions in posterior auditory cortex that participate both in speech perception and speech production. An outstanding question is whether the same neural regions support both perception and production or whether there exist discrete cortical fields subserving these…

  7. Audiovisual Speech Perception in Infancy: The Influence of Vowel Identity and Infants' Productive Abilities on Sensitivity to (Mis)Matches between Auditory and Visual Speech Cues

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Altvater-Mackensen, Nicole; Mani, Nivedita; Grossmann, Tobias

    2016-01-01

    Recent studies suggest that infants' audiovisual speech perception is influenced by articulatory experience (Mugitani et al., 2008; Yeung & Werker, 2013). The current study extends these findings by testing if infants' emerging ability to produce native sounds in babbling impacts their audiovisual speech perception. We tested 44 6-month-olds…

  8. Timing in audiovisual speech perception: A mini review and new psychophysical data.

    PubMed

    Venezia, Jonathan H; Thurman, Steven M; Matchin, William; George, Sahara E; Hickok, Gregory

    2016-02-01

    Recent influential models of audiovisual speech perception suggest that visual speech aids perception by generating predictions about the identity of upcoming speech sounds. These models place stock in the assumption that visual speech leads auditory speech in time. However, it is unclear whether and to what extent temporally-leading visual speech information contributes to perception. Previous studies exploring audiovisual-speech timing have relied upon psychophysical procedures that require artificial manipulation of cross-modal alignment or stimulus duration. We introduce a classification procedure that tracks perceptually relevant visual speech information in time without requiring such manipulations. Participants were shown videos of a McGurk syllable (auditory /apa/ + visual /aka/ = perceptual /ata/) and asked to perform phoneme identification (/apa/ yes-no). The mouth region of the visual stimulus was overlaid with a dynamic transparency mask that obscured visual speech in some frames but not others randomly across trials. Variability in participants' responses (~35 % identification of /apa/ compared to ~5 % in the absence of the masker) served as the basis for classification analysis. The outcome was a high resolution spatiotemporal map of perceptually relevant visual features. We produced these maps for McGurk stimuli at different audiovisual temporal offsets (natural timing, 50-ms visual lead, and 100-ms visual lead). Briefly, temporally-leading (~130 ms) visual information did influence auditory perception. Moreover, several visual features influenced perception of a single speech sound, with the relative influence of each feature depending on both its temporal relation to the auditory signal and its informational content.

  9. An integrated approach to improving noisy speech perception

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koval, Serguei; Stolbov, Mikhail; Smirnova, Natalia; Khitrov, Mikhail

    2002-05-01

    For a number of practical purposes and tasks, experts have to decode speech recordings of very poor quality. A combination of techniques is proposed to improve intelligibility and quality of distorted speech messages and thus facilitate their comprehension. Along with the application of noise cancellation and speech signal enhancement techniques removing and/or reducing various kinds of distortions and interference (primarily unmasking and normalization in time and frequency fields), the approach incorporates optimal listener expert tactics based on selective listening, nonstandard binaural listening, accounting for short-term and long-term human ear adaptation to noisy speech, as well as some methods of speech signal enhancement to support speech decoding during listening. The approach integrating the suggested techniques ensures high-quality ultimate results and has successfully been applied by Speech Technology Center experts and by numerous other users, mainly forensic institutions, to perform noisy speech records decoding for courts, law enforcement and emergency services, accident investigation bodies, etc.

  10. Effect of signal to noise ratio on the speech perception ability of older adults

    PubMed Central

    Shojaei, Elahe; Ashayeri, Hassan; Jafari, Zahra; Zarrin Dast, Mohammad Reza; Kamali, Koorosh

    2016-01-01

    Background: Speech perception ability depends on auditory and extra-auditory elements. The signal- to-noise ratio (SNR) is an extra-auditory element that has an effect on the ability to normally follow speech and maintain a conversation. Speech in noise perception difficulty is a common complaint of the elderly. In this study, the importance of SNR magnitude as an extra-auditory effect on speech perception in noise was examined in the elderly. Methods: The speech perception in noise test (SPIN) was conducted on 25 elderly participants who had bilateral low–mid frequency normal hearing thresholds at three SNRs in the presence of ipsilateral white noise. These participants were selected by available sampling method. Cognitive screening was done using the Persian Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE) test. Results: Independent T- test, ANNOVA and Pearson Correlation Index were used for statistical analysis. There was a significant difference in word discrimination scores at silence and at three SNRs in both ears (p≤0.047). Moreover, there was a significant difference in word discrimination scores for paired SNRs (0 and +5, 0 and +10, and +5 and +10 (p≤0.04)). No significant correlation was found between age and word recognition scores at silence and at three SNRs in both ears (p≥0.386). Conclusion: Our results revealed that decreasing the signal level and increasing the competing noise considerably reduced the speech perception ability in normal hearing at low–mid thresholds in the elderly. These results support the critical role of SNRs for speech perception ability in the elderly. Furthermore, our results revealed that normal hearing elderly participants required compensatory strategies to maintain normal speech perception in challenging acoustic situations. PMID:27390712

  11. Perception of Audio-Visual Speech Synchrony in Spanish-Speaking Children with and without Specific Language Impairment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pons, Ferran; Andreu, Llorenc; Sanz-Torrent, Monica; Buil-Legaz, Lucia; Lewkowicz, David J.

    2013-01-01

    Speech perception involves the integration of auditory and visual articulatory information, and thus requires the perception of temporal synchrony between this information. There is evidence that children with specific language impairment (SLI) have difficulty with auditory speech perception but it is not known if this is also true for the…

  12. Production and perception of listener-oriented clear speech in child language.

    PubMed

    Syrett, Kristen; Kawahara, Shigeto

    2014-11-01

    In this paper, we ask whether children are sensitive to the needs of their interlocutor, and, if so, whether they - like adults - modify acoustic characteristics of their speech as part of a communicative goal. In a production task, preschoolers participated in a word learning task that favored the use of clear speech. Children produced vowels that were longer, more intense, more dispersed in the vowel space, and had a more expanded F0 range than normal speech. Two perception studies with adults showed that these acoustic differences were perceptible and were used to distinguish normal and clear speech styles. We conclude that preschoolers are sensitive to aspects of the speaker-hearer relationship calling upon them to modify their speech in ways that benefit their listener.

  13. Working memory training to improve speech perception in noise across languages

    PubMed Central

    Ingvalson, Erin M.; Dhar, Sumitrajit; Wong, Patrick C. M.; Liu, Hanjun

    2015-01-01

    Working memory capacity has been linked to performance on many higher cognitive tasks, including the ability to perceive speech in noise. Current efforts to train working memory have demonstrated that working memory performance can be improved, suggesting that working memory training may lead to improved speech perception in noise. A further advantage of working memory training to improve speech perception in noise is that working memory training materials are often simple, such as letters or digits, making them easily translatable across languages. The current effort tested the hypothesis that working memory training would be associated with improved speech perception in noise and that materials would easily translate across languages. Native Mandarin Chinese and native English speakers completed ten days of reversed digit span training. Reading span and speech perception in noise both significantly improved following training, whereas untrained controls showed no gains. These data suggest that working memory training may be used to improve listeners' speech perception in noise and that the materials may be quickly adapted to a wide variety of listeners. PMID:26093435

  14. Working memory training to improve speech perception in noise across languages.

    PubMed

    Ingvalson, Erin M; Dhar, Sumitrajit; Wong, Patrick C M; Liu, Hanjun

    2015-06-01

    Working memory capacity has been linked to performance on many higher cognitive tasks, including the ability to perceive speech in noise. Current efforts to train working memory have demonstrated that working memory performance can be improved, suggesting that working memory training may lead to improved speech perception in noise. A further advantage of working memory training to improve speech perception in noise is that working memory training materials are often simple, such as letters or digits, making them easily translatable across languages. The current effort tested the hypothesis that working memory training would be associated with improved speech perception in noise and that materials would easily translate across languages. Native Mandarin Chinese and native English speakers completed ten days of reversed digit span training. Reading span and speech perception in noise both significantly improved following training, whereas untrained controls showed no gains. These data suggest that working memory training may be used to improve listeners' speech perception in noise and that the materials may be quickly adapted to a wide variety of listeners.

  15. Contributions of electric and acoustic hearing to bimodal speech and music perception.

    PubMed

    Crew, Joseph D; Galvin, John J; Landsberger, David M; Fu, Qian-Jie

    2015-01-01

    Cochlear implant (CI) users have difficulty understanding speech in noisy listening conditions and perceiving music. Aided residual acoustic hearing in the contralateral ear can mitigate these limitations. The present study examined contributions of electric and acoustic hearing to speech understanding in noise and melodic pitch perception. Data was collected with the CI only, the hearing aid (HA) only, and both devices together (CI+HA). Speech reception thresholds (SRTs) were adaptively measured for simple sentences in speech babble. Melodic contour identification (MCI) was measured with and without a masker instrument; the fundamental frequency of the masker was varied to be overlapping or non-overlapping with the target contour. Results showed that the CI contributes primarily to bimodal speech perception and that the HA contributes primarily to bimodal melodic pitch perception. In general, CI+HA performance was slightly improved relative to the better ear alone (CI-only) for SRTs but not for MCI, with some subjects experiencing a decrease in bimodal MCI performance relative to the better ear alone (HA-only). Individual performance was highly variable, and the contribution of either device to bimodal perception was both subject- and task-dependent. The results suggest that individualized mapping of CIs and HAs may further improve bimodal speech and music perception. PMID:25790349

  16. Perception of Suprasegmental Features of Speech by Children with Cochlear Implants and Children with Hearing Aids

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Most, Tova; Peled, Miriam

    2007-01-01

    This study assessed perception of suprasegmental features of speech by 30 prelingual children with sensorineural hearing loss. Ten children had cochlear implants (CIs), and 20 children wore hearing aids (HA): 10 with severe hearing loss and 10 with profound hearing loss. Perception of intonation, syllable stress, word emphasis, and word pattern…

  17. Speech Perception Abilities of Adults with Dyslexia: Is There Any Evidence for a True Deficit?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hazan, Valerie; Messaoud-Galusi, Souhila; Rosen, Stuart; Nouwens, Suzan; Shakespeare, Bethanie

    2009-01-01

    Purpose: This study investigated whether adults with dyslexia show evidence of a consistent speech perception deficit by testing phoneme categorization and word perception in noise. Method: Seventeen adults with dyslexia and 20 average readers underwent a test battery including standardized reading, language and phonological awareness tests, and…

  18. Infants' Perception and Representation of Speech: Development of a New Theory.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kuhl, Patricia K.

    A new series of studies on adults' and infants' perception of phonetic "prototypes," exceptionally good instances of phonetic categories, show that prototypes play a unique role in speech perception. Phonetic category prototypes function like "perceptual magnets" for other stimuli in the category. They attract nearby members of the category,…

  19. Is There a Relationship between Speech Identification in Noise and Categorical Perception in Children with Dyslexia?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Calcus, Axelle; Lorenzi, Christian; Collet, Gregory; Colin, Cécile; Kolinsky, Régine

    2016-01-01

    Purpose: Children with dyslexia have been suggested to experience deficits in both categorical perception (CP) and speech identification in noise (SIN) perception. However, results regarding both abilities are inconsistent, and the relationship between them is still unclear. Therefore, this study aimed to investigate the relationship between CP…

  20. Brain networks engaged in audiovisual integration during speech perception revealed by persistent homology-based network filtration.

    PubMed

    Kim, Heejung; Hahm, Jarang; Lee, Hyekyoung; Kang, Eunjoo; Kang, Hyejin; Lee, Dong Soo

    2015-05-01

    The human brain naturally integrates audiovisual information to improve speech perception. However, in noisy environments, understanding speech is difficult and may require much effort. Although the brain network is supposed to be engaged in speech perception, it is unclear how speech-related brain regions are connected during natural bimodal audiovisual or unimodal speech perception with counterpart irrelevant noise. To investigate the topological changes of speech-related brain networks at all possible thresholds, we used a persistent homological framework through hierarchical clustering, such as single linkage distance, to analyze the connected component of the functional network during speech perception using functional magnetic resonance imaging. For speech perception, bimodal (audio-visual speech cue) or unimodal speech cues with counterpart irrelevant noise (auditory white-noise or visual gum-chewing) were delivered to 15 subjects. In terms of positive relationship, similar connected components were observed in bimodal and unimodal speech conditions during filtration. However, during speech perception by congruent audiovisual stimuli, the tighter couplings of left anterior temporal gyrus-anterior insula component and right premotor-visual components were observed than auditory or visual speech cue conditions, respectively. Interestingly, visual speech is perceived under white noise by tight negative coupling in the left inferior frontal region-right anterior cingulate, left anterior insula, and bilateral visual regions, including right middle temporal gyrus, right fusiform components. In conclusion, the speech brain network is tightly positively or negatively connected, and can reflect efficient or effortful processes during natural audiovisual integration or lip-reading, respectively, in speech perception.

  1. Relationships between speech production and speech perception skills in young cochlear-implant users.

    PubMed

    Tye-Murray, N; Spencer, L; Gilbert-Bedia, E

    1995-11-01

    The purpose of this investigation was to examine the relationships between young cochlear-implant users' abilities to produce the speech features of nasality, voicing, duration, frication, and place of articulation and their abilities to utilize the features in three different perceptual conditions: audition-only, vision-only, and audition-plus-vision. Subjects were 23 prelingually deafened children who had at least 2 years of experience with a Cochlear Corporation Nucleus cochlear implant, and an average of 34 months. They completed both the production and perception version of the Children's Audio--visual Feature Test, which is comprised of ten consonant--vowel syllables. An information transmission analysis performed on the confusion matrices revealed that children produced the place of articulation fairly accurately and voicing, duration, and frication less accurately. Acoustic analysis indicated that voiced sounds were not distinguished from unvoiced sounds on the basis of voice onset time or syllabic duration. Subjects who were more likely to produce the place feature correctly were likely to have worn their cochlear implants for a greater length of time. Pearson correlations revealed that subjects who were most likely to hear the place of articulation, nasality, and voicing features in an audition-only condition were also most likely to speak these features correctly. Comparisons of test results collected longitudinally also revealed improvements in production of the features, probably as a result of cochlear-implant experience and/or maturation.

  2. Audiovisual speech perception and eye gaze behavior of adults with asperger syndrome.

    PubMed

    Saalasti, Satu; Kätsyri, Jari; Tiippana, Kaisa; Laine-Hernandez, Mari; von Wendt, Lennart; Sams, Mikko

    2012-08-01

    Audiovisual speech perception was studied in adults with Asperger syndrome (AS), by utilizing the McGurk effect, in which conflicting visual articulation alters the perception of heard speech. The AS group perceived the audiovisual stimuli differently from age, sex and IQ matched controls. When a voice saying /p/ was presented with a face articulating /k/, the controls predominantly heard /k/. Instead, the AS group heard /k/ and /t/ with almost equal frequency, but with large differences between individuals. There were no differences in gaze direction or unisensory perception between the AS and control participants that could have contributed to the audiovisual differences. We suggest an explanation in terms of weak support from the motor system for audiovisual speech perception in AS.

  3. Speech perception in infancy predicts language development in the second year of life: a longitudinal study.

    PubMed

    Tsao, Feng-Ming; Liu, Huei-Mei; Kuhl, Patricia K

    2004-01-01

    Infants' early phonetic perception is hypothesized to play an important role in language development. Previous studies have not assessed this potential link in the first 2 years of life. In this study, speech discrimination was measured in 6-month-old infants using a conditioned head-turn task. At 13, 16, and 24 months of age, language development was assessed in these same children using the MacArthur Communicative Development Inventory. Results demonstrated significant correlations between speech perception at 6 months of age and later language (word understanding, word production, phrase understanding). The finding that speech perception performance at 6 months predicts language at 2 years supports the idea that phonetic perception may play an important role in language acquisition. PMID:15260865

  4. Visual speech perception in foveal and extrafoveal vision: further implications for divisions in hemispheric projections.

    PubMed

    Jordan, Timothy R; Sheen, Mercedes; Abedipour, Lily; Paterson, Kevin B

    2014-01-01

    When observing a talking face, it has often been argued that visual speech to the left and right of fixation may produce differences in performance due to divided projections to the two cerebral hemispheres. However, while it seems likely that such a division in hemispheric projections exists for areas away from fixation, the nature and existence of a functional division in visual speech perception at the foveal midline remains to be determined. We investigated this issue by presenting visual speech in matched hemiface displays to the left and right of a central fixation point, either exactly abutting the foveal midline or else located away from the midline in extrafoveal vision. The location of displays relative to the foveal midline was controlled precisely using an automated, gaze-contingent eye-tracking procedure. Visual speech perception showed a clear right hemifield advantage when presented in extrafoveal locations but no hemifield advantage (left or right) when presented abutting the foveal midline. Thus, while visual speech observed in extrafoveal vision appears to benefit from unilateral projections to left-hemisphere processes, no evidence was obtained to indicate that a functional division exists when visual speech is observed around the point of fixation. Implications of these findings for understanding visual speech perception and the nature of functional divisions in hemispheric projection are discussed.

  5. The functional anatomy of speech perception: Dorsal and ventral processing pathways

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hickok, Gregory

    2003-04-01

    Drawing on recent developments in the cortical organization of vision, and on data from a variety of sources, Hickok and Poeppel (2000) have proposed a new model of the functional anatomy of speech perception. The model posits that early cortical stages of speech perception involve auditory fields in the superior temporal gyrus bilaterally (although asymmetrically). This cortical processing system then diverges into two broad processing streams, a ventral stream, involved in mapping sound onto meaning, and a dorsal stream, involved in mapping sound onto articulatory-based representations. The ventral stream projects ventrolaterally toward inferior posterior temporal cortex which serves as an interface between sound and meaning. The dorsal stream projects dorsoposteriorly toward the parietal lobe and ultimately to frontal regions. This network provides a mechanism for the development and maintenance of ``parity'' between auditory and motor representations of speech. Although the dorsal stream represents a tight connection between speech perception and speech production, it is not a critical component of the speech perception process under ecologically natural listening conditions. Some degree of bi-directionality in both the dorsal and ventral pathways is also proposed. A variety of recent empirical tests of this model have provided further support for the proposal.

  6. Getting the cocktail party started: masking effects in speech perception

    PubMed Central

    Evans, S; McGettigan, C; Agnew, ZK; Rosen, S; Scott, SK

    2016-01-01

    Spoken conversations typically take place in noisy environments and different kinds of masking sounds place differing demands on cognitive resources. Previous studies, examining the modulation of neural activity associated with the properties of competing sounds, have shown that additional speech streams engage the superior temporal gyrus. However, the absence of a condition in which target speech was heard without additional masking made it difficult to identify brain networks specific to masking and to ascertain the extent to which competing speech was processed equivalently to target speech. In this study, we scanned young healthy adults with continuous functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI), whilst they listened to stories masked by sounds that differed in their similarity to speech. We show that auditory attention and control networks are activated during attentive listening to masked speech in the absence of an overt behavioural task. We demonstrate that competing speech is processed predominantly in the left hemisphere within the same pathway as target speech but is not treated equivalently within that stream, and that individuals who perform better in speech in noise tasks activate the left mid-posterior superior temporal gyrus more. Finally, we identify neural responses associated with the onset of sounds in the auditory environment, activity was found within right lateralised frontal regions consistent with a phasic alerting response. Taken together, these results provide a comprehensive account of the neural processes involved in listening in noise. PMID:26696297

  7. Getting the Cocktail Party Started: Masking Effects in Speech Perception.

    PubMed

    Evans, Samuel; McGettigan, Carolyn; Agnew, Zarinah K; Rosen, Stuart; Scott, Sophie K

    2016-03-01

    Spoken conversations typically take place in noisy environments, and different kinds of masking sounds place differing demands on cognitive resources. Previous studies, examining the modulation of neural activity associated with the properties of competing sounds, have shown that additional speech streams engage the superior temporal gyrus. However, the absence of a condition in which target speech was heard without additional masking made it difficult to identify brain networks specific to masking and to ascertain the extent to which competing speech was processed equivalently to target speech. In this study, we scanned young healthy adults with continuous fMRI, while they listened to stories masked by sounds that differed in their similarity to speech. We show that auditory attention and control networks are activated during attentive listening to masked speech in the absence of an overt behavioral task. We demonstrate that competing speech is processed predominantly in the left hemisphere within the same pathway as target speech but is not treated equivalently within that stream and that individuals who perform better in speech in noise tasks activate the left mid-posterior superior temporal gyrus more. Finally, we identify neural responses associated with the onset of sounds in the auditory environment; activity was found within right lateralized frontal regions consistent with a phasic alerting response. Taken together, these results provide a comprehensive account of the neural processes involved in listening in noise.

  8. Development and preliminary evaluation of a pediatric Spanish/English speech perception task

    PubMed Central

    Calandruccio, Lauren; Gomez, Bianca; Buss, Emily; Leibold, Lori J.

    2014-01-01

    Purpose To develop a task to evaluate children’s English and Spanish speech perception abilities in either noise or competing speech maskers. Methods Eight bilingual Spanish/English and eight age matched monolingual English children (ages 4.9 –16.4 years) were tested. A forced-choice, picture-pointing paradigm was selected for adaptively estimating masked speech reception thresholds. Speech stimuli were spoken by simultaneous bilingual Spanish/English talkers. The target stimuli were thirty disyllabic English and Spanish words, familiar to five-year-olds, and easily illustrated. Competing stimuli included either two-talker English or two-talker Spanish speech (corresponding to target language) and spectrally matched noise. Results For both groups of children, regardless of test language, performance was significantly worse for the two-talker than the noise masker. No difference in performance was found between bilingual and monolingual children. Bilingual children performed significantly better in English than in Spanish in competing speech. For all listening conditions, performance improved with increasing age. Conclusions Results indicate that the stimuli and task are appropriate for speech recognition testing in both languages, providing a more conventional measure of speech-in-noise perception as well as a measure of complex listening. Further research is needed to determine performance for Spanish-dominant listeners and to evaluate the feasibility of implementation into routine clinical use. PMID:24686915

  9. Mandarin Speech Perception in Combined Electric and Acoustic Stimulation

    PubMed Central

    Li, Yongxin; Zhang, Guoping; Galvin, John J.; Fu, Qian-Jie

    2014-01-01

    For deaf individuals with residual low-frequency acoustic hearing, combined use of a cochlear implant (CI) and hearing aid (HA) typically provides better speech understanding than with either device alone. Because of coarse spectral resolution, CIs do not provide fundamental frequency (F0) information that contributes to understanding of tonal languages such as Mandarin Chinese. The HA can provide good representation of F0 and, depending on the range of aided acoustic hearing, first and second formant (F1 and F2) information. In this study, Mandarin tone, vowel, and consonant recognition in quiet and noise was measured in 12 adult Mandarin-speaking bimodal listeners with the CI-only and with the CI+HA. Tone recognition was significantly better with the CI+HA in noise, but not in quiet. Vowel recognition was significantly better with the CI+HA in quiet, but not in noise. There was no significant difference in consonant recognition between the CI-only and the CI+HA in quiet or in noise. There was a wide range in bimodal benefit, with improvements often greater than 20 percentage points in some tests and conditions. The bimodal benefit was compared to CI subjects’ HA-aided pure-tone average (PTA) thresholds between 250 and 2000 Hz; subjects were divided into two groups: “better” PTA (<50 dB HL) or “poorer” PTA (>50 dB HL). The bimodal benefit differed significantly between groups only for consonant recognition. The bimodal benefit for tone recognition in quiet was significantly correlated with CI experience, suggesting that bimodal CI users learn to better combine low-frequency spectro-temporal information from acoustic hearing with temporal envelope information from electric hearing. Given the small number of subjects in this study (n = 12), further research with Chinese bimodal listeners may provide more information regarding the contribution of acoustic and electric hearing to tonal language perception. PMID:25386962

  10. Preschool impairments in auditory processing and speech perception uniquely predict future reading problems.

    PubMed

    Boets, Bart; Vandermosten, Maaike; Poelmans, Hanne; Luts, Heleen; Wouters, Jan; Ghesquière, Pol

    2011-01-01

    Developmental dyslexia is characterized by severe reading and spelling difficulties that are persistent and resistant to the usual didactic measures and remedial efforts. It is well established that a major cause of these problems lies in poorly specified phonological representations. Many individuals with dyslexia also present impairments in auditory temporal processing and speech perception, but it remains debated whether these more basic perceptual impairments play a role in causing the reading problem. Longitudinal studies may help clarifying this issue by assessing preschool children before they receive reading instruction and by following them up through literacy development. The current longitudinal study shows impairments in auditory frequency modulation (FM) detection, speech perception and phonological awareness in kindergarten and in grade 1 in children who receive a dyslexia diagnosis in grade 3. FM sensitivity and speech-in-noise perception in kindergarten uniquely contribute to growth in reading ability, even after controlling for letter knowledge and phonological awareness. These findings indicate that impairments in auditory processing and speech perception are not merely an epiphenomenon of reading failure. Although no specific directional relations were observed between auditory processing, speech perception and phonological awareness, the highly significant concurrent and predictive correlations between all these variables suggest a reciprocal association and corroborate the evidence for the auditory deficit theory of dyslexia. PMID:21236633

  11. Bimodal Hearing and Speech Perception with a Competing Talker

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pyschny, Verena; Landwehr, Markus; Hahn, Moritz; Walger, Martin; von Wedel, Hasso; Meister, Hartmut

    2011-01-01

    Purpose: The objective of the study was to investigate the influence of bimodal stimulation upon hearing ability for speech recognition in the presence of a single competing talker. Method: Speech recognition was measured in 3 listening conditions: hearing aid (HA) alone, cochlear implant (CI) alone, and both devices together (CI + HA). To examine…

  12. The Functional Neuroanatomy of Prelexical Processing in Speech Perception

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Scott, Sophie K.; Wise, Richard J. S.

    2004-01-01

    In this paper we attempt to relate the prelexical processing of speech, with particular emphasis on functional neuroimaging studies, to the study of auditory perceptual systems by disciplines in the speech and hearing sciences. The elaboration of the sound-to-meaning pathways in the human brain enables their integration into models of the human…

  13. Sources of Variability in Consonant Perception and Implications for Speech Perception Modeling.

    PubMed

    Zaar, Johannes; Dau, Torsten

    2016-01-01

    The present study investigated the influence of various sources of response variability in consonant perception. A distinction was made between source-induced variability and receiver-related variability. The former refers to perceptual differences induced by differences in the speech tokens and/or the masking noise tokens; the latter describes perceptual differences caused by within- and across-listener uncertainty. Consonant-vowel combinations (CVs) were presented to normal-hearing listeners in white noise at six different signal-to-noise ratios. The obtained responses were analyzed with respect to the considered sources of variability using a measure of the perceptual distance between responses. The largest effect was found across different CVs. For stimuli of the same phonetic identity, the speech-induced variability across and within talkers and the across-listener variability were substantial and of similar magnitude. Even time-shifts in the waveforms of white masking noise produced a significant effect, which was well above the within-listener variability (the smallest effect). Two auditory-inspired models in combination with a template-matching back end were considered to predict the perceptual data. In particular, an energy-based and a modulation-based approach were compared. The suitability of the two models was evaluated with respect to the source-induced perceptual distance and in terms of consonant recognition rates and consonant confusions. Both models captured the source-induced perceptual distance remarkably well. However, the modulation-based approach showed a better agreement with the data in terms of consonant recognition and confusions. The results indicate that low-frequency modulations up to 16 Hz play a crucial role in consonant perception. PMID:27080685

  14. Reading Fluency and Speech Perception Speed of Beginning Readers with Persistent Reading Problems: The Perception of Initial Stop Consonants and Consonant Clusters

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Snellings, Patrick; van der Leij, Aryan; Blok, Henk; de Jong, Peter F.

    2010-01-01

    This study investigated the role of speech perception accuracy and speed in fluent word decoding of reading disabled (RD) children. A same-different phoneme discrimination task with natural speech tested the perception of single consonants and consonant clusters by young but persistent RD children. RD children were slower than chronological age…

  15. Development of an audiovisual speech perception app for children with autism spectrum disorders.

    PubMed

    Irwin, Julia; Preston, Jonathan; Brancazio, Lawrence; D'angelo, Michael; Turcios, Jacqueline

    2015-01-01

    Perception of spoken language requires attention to acoustic as well as visible phonetic information. This article reviews the known differences in audiovisual speech perception in children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) and specifies the need for interventions that address this construct. Elements of an audiovisual training program are described. This researcher-developed program delivered via an iPad app presents natural speech in the context of increasing noise, but supported with a speaking face. Children are cued to attend to visible articulatory information to assist in perception of the spoken words. Data from four children with ASD ages 8-10 are presented showing that the children improved their performance on an untrained auditory speech-in-noise task.

  16. Development of an audiovisual speech perception app for children with autism spectrum disorders

    PubMed Central

    IRWIN, JULIA; PRESTON, JONATHAN; BRANCAZIO, LAWRENCE; D’ANGELO, MICHAEL; TURCIOS, JACQUELINE

    2015-01-01

    Perception of spoken language requires attention to acoustic as well as visible phonetic information. This article reviews the known differences in audiovisual speech perception in children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) and specifies the need for interventions that address this construct. Elements of an audiovisual training program are described. This researcher-developed program delivered via an iPad app presents natural speech in the context of increasing noise, but supported with a speaking face. Children are cued to attend to visible articulatory information to assist in perception of the spoken words. Data from four children with ASD ages 8–10 are presented showing that the children improved their performance on an untrained auditory speech-in-noise task. PMID:25313714

  17. Speech Perception in Preschoolers at Family Risk for Dyslexia: Relations with Low-Level Auditory Processing and Phonological Ability

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Boets, Bart; Ghesquiere, Pol; van Wieringen, Astrid; Wouters, Jan

    2007-01-01

    We tested categorical perception and speech-in-noise perception in a group of five-year-old preschool children genetically at risk for dyslexia, compared to a group of well-matched control children and a group of adults. Both groups of children differed significantly from the adults on all speech measures. Comparing both child groups, the risk…

  18. Auditory Processing and Speech Perception in Children with Specific Language Impairment: Relations with Oral Language and Literacy Skills

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vandewalle, Ellen; Boets, Bart; Ghesquiere, Pol; Zink, Inge

    2012-01-01

    This longitudinal study investigated temporal auditory processing (frequency modulation and between-channel gap detection) and speech perception (speech-in-noise and categorical perception) in three groups of 6 years 3 months to 6 years 8 months-old children attending grade 1: (1) children with specific language impairment (SLI) and literacy delay…

  19. Are mirror neurons the basis of speech perception? Evidence from five cases with damage to the purported human mirror system.

    PubMed

    Rogalsky, Corianne; Love, Tracy; Driscoll, David; Anderson, Steven W; Hickok, Gregory

    2011-01-01

    The discovery of mirror neurons in macaque has led to a resurrection of motor theories of speech perception. Although the majority of lesion and functional imaging studies have associated perception with the temporal lobes, it has also been proposed that the 'human mirror system', which prominently includes Broca's area, is the neurophysiological substrate of speech perception. Although numerous studies have demonstrated a tight link between sensory and motor speech processes, few have directly assessed the critical prediction of mirror neuron theories of speech perception, namely that damage to the human mirror system should cause severe deficits in speech perception. The present study measured speech perception abilities of patients with lesions involving motor regions in the left posterior frontal lobe and/or inferior parietal lobule (i.e., the proposed human 'mirror system'). Performance was at or near ceiling in patients with fronto-parietal lesions. It is only when the lesion encroaches on auditory regions in the temporal lobe that perceptual deficits are evident. This suggests that 'mirror system' damage does not disrupt speech perception, but rather that auditory systems are the primary substrate for speech perception.

  20. Speech-in-Noise Perception Deficit in Adults with Dyslexia: Effects of Background Type and Listening Configuration

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dole, Marjorie; Hoen, Michel; Meunier, Fanny

    2012-01-01

    Developmental dyslexia is associated with impaired speech-in-noise perception. The goal of the present research was to further characterize this deficit in dyslexic adults. In order to specify the mechanisms and processing strategies used by adults with dyslexia during speech-in-noise perception, we explored the influence of background type,…

  1. Auditory processing and speech perception in children with specific language impairment: relations with oral language and literacy skills.

    PubMed

    Vandewalle, Ellen; Boets, Bart; Ghesquière, Pol; Zink, Inge

    2012-01-01

    This longitudinal study investigated temporal auditory processing (frequency modulation and between-channel gap detection) and speech perception (speech-in-noise and categorical perception) in three groups of 6 years 3 months to 6 years 8 months-old children attending grade 1: (1) children with specific language impairment (SLI) and literacy delay (n = 8), (2) children with SLI and normal literacy (n = 10) and (3) typically developing children (n = 14). Moreover, the relations between these auditory processing and speech perception skills and oral language and literacy skills in grade 1 and grade 3 were analyzed. The SLI group with literacy delay scored significantly lower than both other groups on speech perception, but not on temporal auditory processing. Both normal reading groups did not differ in terms of speech perception or auditory processing. Speech perception was significantly related to reading and spelling in grades 1 and 3 and had a unique predictive contribution to reading growth in grade 3, even after controlling reading level, phonological ability, auditory processing and oral language skills in grade 1. These findings indicated that speech perception also had a unique direct impact upon reading development and not only through its relation with phonological awareness. Moreover, speech perception seemed to be more associated with the development of literacy skills and less with oral language ability. PMID:22155538

  2. Temporal Processing and Speech Perception in Noise by Listeners with Auditory Neuropathy

    PubMed Central

    Narne, Vijaya Kumar

    2013-01-01

    Aim The present study evaluated the relation between speech perception in the presence of background noise and temporal processing ability in listeners with Auditory Neuropathy (AN). Method The study included two experiments. In the first experiment, temporal resolution of listeners with normal hearing and those with AN was evaluated using measures of temporal modulation transfer function and frequency modulation detection at modulation rates of 2 and 10 Hz. In the second experiment, speech perception in quiet and noise was evaluated at three signal to noise ratios (SNR) (0, 5, and 10 dB). Results Results demonstrated that listeners with AN performed significantly poorer than normal hearing listeners in both amplitude modulation and frequency modulation detection, indicating significant impairment in extracting envelope as well as fine structure cues from the signal. Furthermore, there was significant correlation seen between measures of temporal resolution and speech perception in noise. Conclusion Results suggested that an impaired ability to efficiently process envelope and fine structure cues of the speech signal may be the cause of the extreme difficulties faced during speech perception in noise by listeners with AN. PMID:23409105

  3. Speech pattern hearing aids for the profoundly hearing impaired: speech perception and auditory abilities.

    PubMed

    Faulkner, A; Ball, V; Rosen, S; Moore, B C; Fourcin, A

    1992-04-01

    A family of prototype speech pattern hearing aids for the profoundly hearing impaired has been compared to amplification. These aids are designed to extract acoustic speech patterns that convey essential phonetic contrasts, and to match this information to residual receptive abilities. In the first study, the presentation of voice fundamental frequency information from a wearable SiVo (sinusoidal voice) aid was compared to amplification in 11 profoundly deafened adults. Intonation reception was often better, and never worse, with fundamental frequency information. Four subjects scored more highly in audio-visual consonant identification with fundamental frequency information, five performed better with amplified speech, and two performed similarly under these two conditions. Five of the 11 subjects continued use of the SiVo aid after the tests were complete. A second study examined a laboratory prototype compound speech pattern aid, which encoded voice fundamental frequency, amplitude envelope, and the presence of voiceless excitation. In five profoundly deafened adults, performance was better in consonant identification when additional speech patterns were present than with fundamental frequency alone; the main advantage was derived from amplitude information. In both consonant identification and connected discourse tracking, performance with appropriately matched compound speech pattern signals was better than with amplified speech in three subjects, and similar to performance with amplified speech in the other two. In nine subjects, frequency discrimination, gap detection, and frequency selectivity were measured, and were compared to speech receptive abilities with both amplification and fundamental frequency presentation. The subjects who showed the greatest advantage from fundamental frequency presentation showed the greatest average hearing losses, and the least degree of frequency selectivity. Compound speech pattern aids appear to be more effective for some

  4. Speech perception in preschoolers at family risk for dyslexia: relations with low-level auditory processing and phonological ability.

    PubMed

    Boets, Bart; Ghesquière, Pol; van Wieringen, Astrid; Wouters, Jan

    2007-04-01

    We tested categorical perception and speech-in-noise perception in a group of five-year-old preschool children genetically at risk for dyslexia, compared to a group of well-matched control children and a group of adults. Both groups of children differed significantly from the adults on all speech measures. Comparing both child groups, the risk group presented a slight but significant deficit in speech-in-noise perception, particularly in the most difficult listening condition. For categorical perception a marginally significant deficit was observed on the discrimination task but not on the identification task. Speech parameters were significantly related to phonological awareness and low-level auditory measures. Results are discussed within the framework of a causal model where low-level auditory problems are hypothesized to result in subtle speech perception problems that might interfere with the development of phonology and reading and spelling ability. PMID:16887179

  5. Effects of English Cued Speech on Speech Perception, Phonological Awareness and Literacy: A Case Study of a 9-Year-Old Deaf Boy Using a Cochlear Implant

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rees, Rachel; Bladel, Judith

    2013-01-01

    Many studies have shown that French Cued Speech (CS) can enhance lipreading and the development of phonological awareness and literacy in deaf children but, as yet, there is little evidence that these findings can be generalized to English CS. This study investigated the possible effects of English CS on the speech perception, phonological…

  6. The Role of Experience in the Perception of Phonetic Detail in Children's Speech: A Comparison between Speech-Language Pathologists and Clinically Untrained Listeners

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Munson, Benjamin; Johnson, Julie M.; Edwards, Jan

    2012-01-01

    Purpose: This study examined whether experienced speech-language pathologists (SLPs) differ from inexperienced people in their perception of phonetic detail in children's speech. Method: Twenty-one experienced SLPs and 21 inexperienced listeners participated in a series of tasks in which they used a visual-analog scale (VAS) to rate children's…

  7. Speech Perception in Noise by Children With Cochlear Implants

    PubMed Central

    Caldwell, Amanda; Nittrouer, Susan

    2013-01-01

    Purpose Common wisdom suggests that listening in noise poses disproportionately greater difficulty for listeners with cochlear implants (CIs) than for peers with normal hearing (NH). The purpose of this study was to examine phonological, language, and cognitive skills that might help explain speech-in-noise abilities for children with CIs. Method Three groups of kindergartners (NH, hearing aid wearers, and CI users) were tested on speech recognition in quiet and noise and on tasks thought to underlie the abilities that fit into the domains of phonological awareness, general language, and cognitive skills. These last measures were used as predictor variables in regression analyses with speech-in-noise scores as dependent variables. Results Compared to children with NH, children with CIs did not perform as well on speech recognition in noise or on most other measures, including recognition in quiet. Two surprising results were that (a) noise effects were consistent across groups and (b) scores on other measures did not explain any group differences in speech recognition. Conclusions Limitations of implant processing take their primary toll on recognition in quiet and account for poor speech recognition and language/phonological deficits in children with CIs. Implications are that teachers/clinicians need to teach language/phonology directly and maximize signal-to-noise levels in the classroom. PMID:22744138

  8. Neurophysiological evidence that musical training influences the recruitment of right hemispheric homologues for speech perception.

    PubMed

    Jantzen, McNeel G; Howe, Bradley M; Jantzen, Kelly J

    2014-01-01

    Musicians have a more accurate temporal and tonal representation of auditory stimuli than their non-musician counterparts (Musacchia et al., 2007; Parbery-Clark et al., 2009a; Zendel and Alain, 2009; Kraus and Chandrasekaran, 2010). Musicians who are adept at the production and perception of music are also more sensitive to key acoustic features of speech such as voice onset timing and pitch. Together, these data suggest that musical training may enhance the processing of acoustic information for speech sounds. In the current study, we sought to provide neural evidence that musicians process speech and music in a similar way. We hypothesized that for musicians, right hemisphere areas traditionally associated with music are also engaged for the processing of speech sounds. In contrast we predicted that in non-musicians processing of speech sounds would be localized to traditional left hemisphere language areas. Speech stimuli differing in voice onset time was presented using a dichotic listening paradigm. Subjects either indicated aural location for a specified speech sound or identified a specific speech sound from a directed aural location. Musical training effects and organization of acoustic features were reflected by activity in source generators of the P50. This included greater activation of right middle temporal gyrus and superior temporal gyrus in musicians. The findings demonstrate recruitment of right hemisphere in musicians for discriminating speech sounds and a putative broadening of their language network. Musicians appear to have an increased sensitivity to acoustic features and enhanced selective attention to temporal features of speech that is facilitated by musical training and supported, in part, by right hemisphere homologues of established speech processing regions of the brain. PMID:24624107

  9. Normal Adult Aging and the Contextual Influences Affecting Speech and Meaningful Sound Perception

    PubMed Central

    Aydelott, Jennifer; Leech, Robert; Crinion, Jennifer

    2010-01-01

    It is widely accepted that hearing loss increases markedly with age, beginning in the fourth decade ISO 7029 (2000). Age-related hearing loss is typified by high-frequency threshold elevation and associated reductions in speech perception because speech sounds, especially consonants, become inaudible. Nevertheless, older adults often report additional and progressive difficulties in the perception and comprehension of speech, often highlighted in adverse listening conditions that exceed those reported by younger adults with a similar degree of high-frequency hearing loss (Dubno, Dirks, & Morgan) leading to communication difficulties and social isolation (Weinstein & Ventry). Some of the age-related decline in speech perception can be accounted for by peripheral sensory problems but cognitive aging can also be a contributing factor. In this article, we review findings from the psycholinguistic literature predominantly over the last four years and present a pilot study illustrating how normal age-related changes in cognition and the linguistic context can influence speech-processing difficulties in older adults. For significant progress in understanding and improving the auditory performance of aging listeners to be made, we discuss how future research will have to be much more specific not only about which interactions between auditory and cognitive abilities are critical but also how they are modulated in the brain. PMID:21307006

  10. Effect of attentional load on audiovisual speech perception: evidence from ERPs.

    PubMed

    Alsius, Agnès; Möttönen, Riikka; Sams, Mikko E; Soto-Faraco, Salvador; Tiippana, Kaisa

    2014-01-01

    Seeing articulatory movements influences perception of auditory speech. This is often reflected in a shortened latency of auditory event-related potentials (ERPs) generated in the auditory cortex. The present study addressed whether this early neural correlate of audiovisual interaction is modulated by attention. We recorded ERPs in 15 subjects while they were presented with auditory, visual, and audiovisual spoken syllables. Audiovisual stimuli consisted of incongruent auditory and visual components known to elicit a McGurk effect, i.e., a visually driven alteration in the auditory speech percept. In a Dual task condition, participants were asked to identify spoken syllables whilst monitoring a rapid visual stream of pictures for targets, i.e., they had to divide their attention. In a Single task condition, participants identified the syllables without any other tasks, i.e., they were asked to ignore the pictures and focus their attention fully on the spoken syllables. The McGurk effect was weaker in the Dual task than in the Single task condition, indicating an effect of attentional load on audiovisual speech perception. Early auditory ERP components, N1 and P2, peaked earlier to audiovisual stimuli than to auditory stimuli when attention was fully focused on syllables, indicating neurophysiological audiovisual interaction. This latency decrement was reduced when attention was loaded, suggesting that attention influences early neural processing of audiovisual speech. We conclude that reduced attention weakens the interaction between vision and audition in speech.

  11. Tuning in and tuning out: Speech perception in native- and foreign-talker babble

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Heukelem, Kristin; Bradlow, Ann R.

    2005-09-01

    Studies on speech perception in multitalker babble have revealed asymmetries in the effects of noise on native versus foreign-accented speech intelligibility for native listeners [Rogers et al., Lang Speech 47(2), 139-154 (2004)] and on sentence-in-noise perception by native versus non-native listeners [Mayo et al., J. Speech Lang. Hear. Res., 40, 686-693 (1997)], suggesting that the linguistic backgrounds of talkers and listeners contribute to the effects of noise on speech perception. However, little attention has been paid to the language of the babble. This study tested whether the language of the noise also has asymmetrical effects on listeners. Replicating previous findings [e.g., Bronkhorst and Plomp, J. Acoust. Soc. Am., 92, 3132-3139 (1992)], the results showed poorer English sentence recognition by native English listeners in six-talker babble than in two-talker babble regardless of the language of the babble, demonstrating the effect of increased psychoacoustic/energetic masking. In addition, the results showed that in the two-talker babble condition, native English listeners were more adversely affected by English than Chinese babble. These findings demonstrate informational/cognitive masking on sentence-in-noise recognition in the form of linguistic competition. Whether this competition is at the lexical or sublexical level and whether it is modulated by the phonetic similarity between the target and noise languages remains to be determined.

  12. Normal adult aging and the contextual influences affecting speech and meaningful sound perception.

    PubMed

    Aydelott, Jennifer; Leech, Robert; Crinion, Jennifer

    2010-12-01

    It is widely accepted that hearing loss increases markedly with age, beginning in the fourth decade ISO 7029 (2000). Age-related hearing loss is typified by high-frequency threshold elevation and associated reductions in speech perception because speech sounds, especially consonants, become inaudible. Nevertheless, older adults often report additional and progressive difficulties in the perception and comprehension of speech, often highlighted in adverse listening conditions that exceed those reported by younger adults with a similar degree of high-frequency hearing loss (Dubno, Dirks, & Morgan) leading to communication difficulties and social isolation (Weinstein & Ventry). Some of the age-related decline in speech perception can be accounted for by peripheral sensory problems but cognitive aging can also be a contributing factor. In this article, we review findings from the psycholinguistic literature predominantly over the last four years and present a pilot study illustrating how normal age-related changes in cognition and the linguistic context can influence speech-processing difficulties in older adults. For significant progress in understanding and improving the auditory performance of aging listeners to be made, we discuss how future research will have to be much more specific not only about which interactions between auditory and cognitive abilities are critical but also how they are modulated in the brain. PMID:21307006

  13. Hemispheric Asymmetries in Speech Perception: Sense, Nonsense and Modulations

    PubMed Central

    Rosen, Stuart; Wise, Richard J. S.; Chadha, Shabneet; Conway, Eleanor-Jayne; Scott, Sophie K.

    2011-01-01

    Background The well-established left hemisphere specialisation for language processing has long been claimed to be based on a low-level auditory specialization for specific acoustic features in speech, particularly regarding ‘rapid temporal processing’. Methodology A novel analysis/synthesis technique was used to construct a variety of sounds based on simple sentences which could be manipulated in spectro-temporal complexity, and whether they were intelligible or not. All sounds consisted of two noise-excited spectral prominences (based on the lower two formants in the original speech) which could be static or varying in frequency and/or amplitude independently. Dynamically varying both acoustic features based on the same sentence led to intelligible speech but when either or both acoustic features were static, the stimuli were not intelligible. Using the frequency dynamics from one sentence with the amplitude dynamics of another led to unintelligible sounds of comparable spectro-temporal complexity to the intelligible ones. Positron emission tomography (PET) was used to compare which brain regions were active when participants listened to the different sounds. Conclusions Neural activity to spectral and amplitude modulations sufficient to support speech intelligibility (without actually being intelligible) was seen bilaterally, with a right temporal lobe dominance. A left dominant response was seen only to intelligible sounds. It thus appears that the left hemisphere specialisation for speech is based on the linguistic properties of utterances, not on particular acoustic features. PMID:21980349

  14. High visual resolution matters in audiovisual speech perception, but only for some.

    PubMed

    Alsius, Agnès; Wayne, Rachel V; Paré, Martin; Munhall, Kevin G

    2016-07-01

    The basis for individual differences in the degree to which visual speech input enhances comprehension of acoustically degraded speech is largely unknown. Previous research indicates that fine facial detail is not critical for visual enhancement when auditory information is available; however, these studies did not examine individual differences in ability to make use of fine facial detail in relation to audiovisual speech perception ability. Here, we compare participants based on their ability to benefit from visual speech information in the presence of an auditory signal degraded with noise, modulating the resolution of the visual signal through low-pass spatial frequency filtering and monitoring gaze behavior. Participants who benefited most from the addition of visual information (high visual gain) were more adversely affected by the removal of high spatial frequency information, compared to participants with low visual gain, for materials with both poor and rich contextual cues (i.e., words and sentences, respectively). Differences as a function of gaze behavior between participants with the highest and lowest visual gains were observed only for words, with participants with the highest visual gain fixating longer on the mouth region. Our results indicate that the individual variance in audiovisual speech in noise performance can be accounted for, in part, by better use of fine facial detail information extracted from the visual signal and increased fixation on mouth regions for short stimuli. Thus, for some, audiovisual speech perception may suffer when the visual input (in addition to the auditory signal) is less than perfect.

  15. The neural basis of non-native speech perception in bilingual children.

    PubMed

    Archila-Suerte, Pilar; Zevin, Jason; Ramos, Aurora Isabel; Hernandez, Arturo E

    2013-02-15

    The goal of the present study is to reveal how the neural mechanisms underlying non-native speech perception change throughout childhood. In a pre-attentive listening fMRI task, English monolingual and Spanish-English bilingual children - divided into groups of younger (6-8yrs) and older children (9-10yrs) - were asked to watch a silent movie while several English syllable combinations played through a pair of headphones. Two additional groups of monolingual and bilingual adults were included in the analyses. Our results show that the neural mechanisms supporting speech perception throughout development differ in monolinguals and bilinguals. While monolinguals recruit perceptual areas (i.e., superior temporal gyrus) in early and late childhood to process native speech, bilinguals recruit perceptual areas (i.e., superior temporal gyrus) in early childhood and higher-order executive areas in late childhood (i.e., bilateral middle frontal gyrus and bilateral inferior parietal lobule, among others) to process non-native speech. The findings support the Perceptual Assimilation Model and the Speech Learning Model and suggest that the neural system processes phonological information differently depending on the stage of L2 speech learning.

  16. Age of second-language acquisition and perception of speech in noise.

    PubMed

    Mayo, L H; Florentine, M; Buus, S

    1997-06-01

    To determine how age of acquisition influences perception of second-language speech, the Speech Perception in Noise (SPIN) test was administered to native Mexican-Spanish-speaking listeners who learned fluent English before age 6 (early bilinguals) or after age 14 (late bilinguals) and monolingual American-English speakers (monolinguals). Results show that the levels of noise at which the speech was intelligible were significantly higher and the benefit from context was significantly greater for monolinguals and early bilinguals than for late bilinguals. These findings indicate that learning a second language at an early age is important for the acquisition of efficient high-level processing of it, at least in the presence of noise. PMID:9210123

  17. Is the Sensorimotor Cortex Relevant for Speech Perception and Understanding? An Integrative Review

    PubMed Central

    Schomers, Malte R.; Pulvermüller, Friedemann

    2016-01-01

    In the neuroscience of language, phonemes are frequently described as multimodal units whose neuronal representations are distributed across perisylvian cortical regions, including auditory and sensorimotor areas. A different position views phonemes primarily as acoustic entities with posterior temporal localization, which are functionally independent from frontoparietal articulatory programs. To address this current controversy, we here discuss experimental results from functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) as well as transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) studies. On first glance, a mixed picture emerges, with earlier research documenting neurofunctional distinctions between phonemes in both temporal and frontoparietal sensorimotor systems, but some recent work seemingly failing to replicate the latter. Detailed analysis of methodological differences between studies reveals that the way experiments are set up explains whether sensorimotor cortex maps phonological information during speech perception or not. In particular, acoustic noise during the experiment and ‘motor noise’ caused by button press tasks work against the frontoparietal manifestation of phonemes. We highlight recent studies using sparse imaging and passive speech perception tasks along with multivariate pattern analysis (MVPA) and especially representational similarity analysis (RSA), which succeeded in separating acoustic-phonological from general-acoustic processes and in mapping specific phonological information on temporal and frontoparietal regions. The question about a causal role of sensorimotor cortex on speech perception and understanding is addressed by reviewing recent TMS studies. We conclude that frontoparietal cortices, including ventral motor and somatosensory areas, reflect phonological information during speech perception and exert a causal influence on language understanding. PMID:27708566

  18. Perception of Speech Simulating Different Configurations of Hearing Loss in Normal Hearing Individuals

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kumar, Prawin; Yathiraj, Asha

    2009-01-01

    The present study aimed at assessing perception of filtered speech that simulated different configurations of hearing loss. The simulation was done by filtering four equivalent lists of a monosyllabic test developed by Shivaprasad for Indian-English speakers. This was done using the Adobe Audition software. Thirty normal hearing participants in…

  19. The Relationship between Learning to Read and Language-Specific Speech Perception: Maturation versus Experience

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Horlyck, Stephanie; Reid, Amanda; Burnham, Denis

    2012-01-01

    Does the intensification of what can be called "language-specific speech perception" around reading onset occur as a function of maturation or experience? Preschool 5-year-olds with no school experience, 5-year-olds with 6 months' schooling, 6-year-olds with 6 months' schooling, and 6-year-olds with 18 months' schooling were tested on native and…

  20. Impact of Language on Development of Auditory-Visual Speech Perception

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sekiyama, Kaoru; Burnham, Denis

    2008-01-01

    The McGurk effect paradigm was used to examine the developmental onset of inter-language differences between Japanese and English in auditory-visual speech perception. Participants were asked to identify syllables in audiovisual (with congruent or discrepant auditory and visual components), audio-only, and video-only presentations at various…

  1. Spatial Frequency Requirements and Gaze Strategy in Visual-Only and Audiovisual Speech Perception

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wilson, Amanda H.; Alsius, Agnès; Parè, Martin; Munhall, Kevin G.

    2016-01-01

    Purpose: The aim of this article is to examine the effects of visual image degradation on performance and gaze behavior in audiovisual and visual-only speech perception tasks. Method: We presented vowel-consonant-vowel utterances visually filtered at a range of frequencies in visual-only, audiovisual congruent, and audiovisual incongruent…

  2. An Exploration of Why Preschoolers Perform Differently than Do Adults in Audiovisual Speech Perception Tasks.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Desjardins, Renee N.; And Others

    1997-01-01

    Examined whether experience correctly producing consonants plays role in developing underlying representation which mediates perception of visible speech. Tested preschoolers (divided by their making of substitution errors) and adults in auditory-only, visual-only, and audiovisual conditions. Found children overall showed less visual influence and…

  3. Speech Perception in Infancy Predicts Language Development in the Second Year of Life: A Longitudinal Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tsao, Feng-Ming; Liu, Huei-Mei; Kuhl, Patricia K.

    2004-01-01

    Infants' early phonetic perception is hypothesized to play an important role in language development. Previous studies have not assessed this potential link in the first 2 years of life. In this study, speech discrimination was measured in 6-month-old infants using a conditioned head-turn task. At 13, 16, and 24 months of age, language development…

  4. Infants Are Sensitive to Within-Category Variation in Speech Perception

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McMurray, Bob; Aslin, Richard N.

    2005-01-01

    Previous research on speech perception in both adults and infants has supported the view that consonants are perceived categorically; that is, listeners are relatively insensitive to variation below the level of the phoneme. More recent work, on the other hand, has shown adults to be systematically sensitive to within category variation [McMurray,…

  5. The Effects of Corrective Feedback on Instructed L2 Speech Perception

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lee, Andrew H.; Lyster, Roy

    2016-01-01

    To what extent do second language (L2) learners benefit from instruction that includes corrective feedback (CF) on L2 speech perception? This article addresses this question by reporting the results of a classroom-based experimental study conducted with 32 young adult Korean learners of English. An instruction-only group and an instruction + CF…

  6. Effects of Variation in Emotional Tone of Voice on Speech Perception.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mullennix, John W.; Bihon, Tressa; Bricklemyer, Jodie; Gaston, Jeremy; Keener, Jessica M.

    2002-01-01

    Effects of variation from stimulus to stimulus in emotional tone of voice on speech perception were examined through a series of perceptual experiments. Stimuli were recorded from human speakers who produced utterances in tones of voice designed to convey affective information. Stimuli varying in talker voice and emotional the where then presented…

  7. Speech Perception Results for Children Using Cochlear Implants Who Have Additional Special Needs

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dettman, Shani J.; Fiket, Hayley; Dowell, Richard C.; Charlton, Margaret; Williams, Sarah S.; Tomov, Alexandra M.; Barker, Elizabeth J.

    2004-01-01

    Speech perception outcomes in young children with cochlear implants are affected by a number of variables including the age of implantation, duration of implantation, mode of communication, and the presence of a developmental delay or additional disability. The aim of this study is to examine the association between degree of developmental delay…

  8. Teachers' Perceptions of Students with Speech Sound Disorders: A Quantitative and Qualitative Analysis

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Overby, Megan; Carrell, Thomas; Bernthal, John

    2007-01-01

    Purpose: This study examined 2nd-grade teachers' perceptions of the academic, social, and behavioral competence of students with speech sound disorders (SSDs). Method: Forty-eight 2nd-grade teachers listened to 2 groups of sentences differing by intelligibility and pitch but spoken by a single 2nd grader. For each sentence group, teachers rated…

  9. Effects of Removing Low-Frequency Electric Information on Speech Perception with Bimodal Hearing

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fowler, Jennifer R.; Eggleston, Jessica L.; Reavis, Kelly M.; McMillan, Garnett P.; Reiss, Lina A. J.

    2016-01-01

    Purpose: The objective was to determine whether speech perception could be improved for bimodal listeners (those using a cochlear implant [CI] in one ear and hearing aid in the contralateral ear) by removing low-frequency information provided by the CI, thereby reducing acoustic-electric overlap. Method: Subjects were adult CI subjects with at…

  10. Bullying in Children Who Stutter: Speech-Language Pathologists' Perceptions and Intervention Strategies

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Blood, Gordon W.; Boyle, Michael P.; Blood, Ingrid M.; Nalesnik, Gina R.

    2010-01-01

    Bullying in school-age children is a global epidemic. School personnel play a critical role in eliminating this problem. The goals of this study were to examine speech-language pathologists' (SLPs) perceptions of bullying, endorsement of potential strategies for dealing with bullying, and associations among SLPs' responses and specific demographic…

  11. School-Based Speech-Language Pathologists' Knowledge and Perceptions of Autism Spectrum Disorder and Bullying

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ofe, Erin E.; Plumb, Allison M.; Plexico, Laura W.; Haak, Nancy J.

    2016-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of the current investigation was to examine speech-language pathologists' (SLPs') knowledge and perceptions of bullying, with an emphasis on autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Method: A 46-item, web-based survey was used to address the purposes of this investigation. Participants were recruited through e-mail and electronic…

  12. Modelling Relations between Sensory Processing, Speech Perception, Orthographic and Phonological Ability, and Literacy Achievement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Boets, Bart; Wouters, Jan; van Wieringen, Astrid; De Smedt, Bert; Ghesquiere, Pol

    2008-01-01

    The general magnocellular theory postulates that dyslexia is the consequence of a multimodal deficit in the processing of transient and dynamic stimuli. In the auditory modality, this deficit has been hypothesized to interfere with accurate speech perception, and subsequently disrupt the development of phonological and later reading and spelling…

  13. Speech perception in noise deficits in Japanese children with reading difficulties: effects of presentation rate.

    PubMed

    Inoue, Tomohiro; Higashibara, Fumiko; Okazaki, Shinji; Maekawa, Hisao

    2011-01-01

    We examined the effects of presentation rate on speech perception in noise and its relation to reading in 117 typically developing (TD) children and 10 children with reading difficulties (RD) in Japan. Responses in a speech perception task were measured for speed, accuracy, and stability in two conditions that varied stimulus presentation rate: high rate and same rate conditions. TD children exhibited significantly more stable responses in the high rate condition than they did in the same rate condition. Multiple regression analyses indicated that response stability in the high rate condition accounted for a unique amount of variance in reading and mora deletion. As a group, children with RD performed less accurately than did TD children in the high rate condition, but not in the same rate condition. Findings suggest that the dependence of speech perception on stimulus context relates to reading proficiency or difficulty in Japanese children. The influences of phonology and orthography of language on the relationships between speech perception and reading are discussed.

  14. General Auditory Processing, Speech Perception and Phonological Awareness Skills in Chinese-English Biliteracy

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chung, Kevin K. H.; McBride-Chang, Catherine; Cheung, Him; Wong, Simpson W. L.

    2013-01-01

    This study focused on the associations of general auditory processing, speech perception, phonological awareness and word reading in Cantonese-speaking children from Hong Kong learning to read both Chinese (first language [L1]) and English (second language [L2]). Children in Grades 2--4 ("N" = 133) participated and were administered measures of…

  15. Kindergarten Teachers' Perceptions of Language and Literacy Development, Speech-Language Pathologists, and Language Interventions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shaughnessy, Anne; Sanger, Dixie

    2005-01-01

    A survey study examined the perceptions of 484 kindergarten teachers in one midwestern state regarding language and literacy development, roles and responsibilities of speech-language pathologists (SLP), and teacher-delivered interventions in the classroom. Quantitative and qualitative findings from a 36-item survey revealed that the majority of…

  16. On the context-dependent nature of the contribution of the ventral premotor cortex to speech perception

    PubMed Central

    Tremblay, Pascale; Small, Steven L.

    2011-01-01

    What is the nature of the interface between speech perception and production, where auditory and motor representations converge? One set of explanations suggests that during perception, the motor circuits involved in producing a perceived action are in some way enacting the action without actually causing movement (covert simulation) or sending along the motor information to be used to predict its sensory consequences (i.e., efference copy). Other accounts either reject entirely the involvement of motor representations in perception, or explain their role as being more supportive than integral, and not employing the identical circuits used in production. Using fMRI, we investigated whether there are brain regions that are conjointly active for both speech perception and production, and whether these regions are sensitive to articulatory (syllabic) complexity during both processes, which is predicted by a covert simulation account. A group of healthy young adults (1) observed a female speaker produce a set of familiar words (perception), and (2) observed and then repeated the words (production). There were two types of words, varying in articulatory complexity, as measured by the presence or absence of consonant clusters. The simple words contained no consonant cluster (e.g. “palace”), while the complex words contained one to three consonant clusters (e.g. “planet”). Results indicate that the left ventral premotor cortex (PMv) was significantly active during speech perception and speech production but that activation in this region was scaled to articulatory complexity only during speech production, revealing an incompletely specified efferent motor signal during speech perception. The right planum temporal (PT) was also active during speech perception and speech production, and activation in this region was scaled to articulatory complexity during both production and perception. These findings are discussed in the context of current theories theory of

  17. The functional neuroanatomy of prelexical processing in speech perception.

    PubMed

    Scott, Sophie K; Wise, Richard J S

    2004-01-01

    In this paper we attempt to relate the prelexical processing of speech, with particular emphasis on functional neuroimaging studies, to the study of auditory perceptual systems by disciplines in the speech and hearing sciences. The elaboration of the sound-to-meaning pathways in the human brain enables their integration into models of the human language system and the definition of potential auditory processing differences between the two cerebral hemispheres. Further, it facilitates comparison with recent developments in the study of the anatomy of non-human primate auditory cortex, which has very precisely revealed architectonically distinct regions, connectivity, and functional specialization. PMID:15037125

  18. Melodic Contour Training and Its Effect on Speech in Noise, Consonant Discrimination, and Prosody Perception for Cochlear Implant Recipients

    PubMed Central

    Lo, Chi Yhun; McMahon, Catherine M.; Looi, Valerie; Thompson, William F.

    2015-01-01

    Cochlear implant (CI) recipients generally have good perception of speech in quiet environments but difficulty perceiving speech in noisy conditions, reduced sensitivity to speech prosody, and difficulty appreciating music. Auditory training has been proposed as a method of improving speech perception for CI recipients, and recent efforts have focussed on the potential benefits of music-based training. This study evaluated two melodic contour training programs and their relative efficacy as measured on a number of speech perception tasks. These melodic contours were simple 5-note sequences formed into 9 contour patterns, such as “rising” or “rising-falling.” One training program controlled difficulty by manipulating interval sizes, the other by note durations. Sixteen adult CI recipients (aged 26–86 years) and twelve normal hearing (NH) adult listeners (aged 21–42 years) were tested on a speech perception battery at baseline and then after 6 weeks of melodic contour training. Results indicated that there were some benefits for speech perception tasks for CI recipients after melodic contour training. Specifically, consonant perception in quiet and question/statement prosody was improved. In comparison, NH listeners performed at ceiling for these tasks. There was no significant difference between the posttraining results for either training program, suggesting that both conferred benefits for training CI recipients to better perceive speech. PMID:26494944

  19. Effects of variation in emotional tone of voice on speech perception.

    PubMed

    Mullennix, John W; Bihon, Tressa; Bricklemyer, Jodie; Gaston, Jeremy; Keener, Jessica M

    2002-09-01

    The effects of variation from stimulus to stimulus in emotional tone of voice on speech perception were examined through a series of perceptual experiments. Stimuli were recorded from human speakers who produced utterances in tones of voice designed to convey affective information. Then, stimuli varying in talker voice and emotional tone were presented to listeners for perceptual matching and classification. The results showed that both intertalker variation in talker voice and intratalker variation in emotional tone had a negative effect on perceptual performance. The results suggest that sources of variation in the speech signal that affect the spectral/temporal properties of speech (i.e., talker voice, speech rate, emotional tone) may be treated differently than sources of variation that do not affect these properties (i.e., vocal amplitude).

  20. Neuronal oscillations and speech perception: critical-band temporal envelopes are the essence

    PubMed Central

    Ghitza, Oded; Giraud, Anne-Lise; Poeppel, David

    2013-01-01

    A recent opinion article (Neural oscillations in speech: do not be enslaved by the envelope. Obleser et al., 2012) questions the validity of a class of speech perception models inspired by the possible role of neuronal oscillations in decoding speech (e.g., Ghitza, 2011; Giraud and Poeppel, 2012). The authors criticize, in particular, what they see as an over-emphasis of the role of temporal speech envelope information, and an over-emphasis of entrainment to the input rhythm while neglecting the role of top-down processes in modulating the entrainment of neuronal oscillations. Here we respond to these arguments, referring to the phenomenological model of Ghitza (2011), taken as a representative of the criticized approach. PMID:23316150

  1. Robust speech perception: Recognize the familiar, generalize to the similar, and adapt to the novel

    PubMed Central

    Kleinschmidt, Dave F.; Jaeger, T. Florian

    2016-01-01

    Successful speech perception requires that listeners map the acoustic signal to linguistic categories. These mappings are not only probabilistic, but change depending on the situation. For example, one talker’s /p/ might be physically indistinguishable from another talker’s /b/ (cf. lack of invariance). We characterize the computational problem posed by such a subjectively non-stationary world and propose that the speech perception system overcomes this challenge by (1) recognizing previously encountered situations, (2) generalizing to other situations based on previous similar experience, and (3) adapting to novel situations. We formalize this proposal in the ideal adapter framework: (1) to (3) can be understood as inference under uncertainty about the appropriate generative model for the current talker, thereby facilitating robust speech perception despite the lack of invariance. We focus on two critical aspects of the ideal adapter. First, in situations that clearly deviate from previous experience, listeners need to adapt. We develop a distributional (belief-updating) learning model of incremental adaptation. The model provides a good fit against known and novel phonetic adaptation data, including perceptual recalibration and selective adaptation. Second, robust speech recognition requires listeners learn to represent the structured component of cross-situation variability in the speech signal. We discuss how these two aspects of the ideal adapter provide a unifying explanation for adaptation, talker-specificity, and generalization across talkers and groups of talkers (e.g., accents and dialects). The ideal adapter provides a guiding framework for future investigations into speech perception and adaptation, and more broadly language comprehension. PMID:25844873

  2. A binary masking technique for isolating energetic masking in speech perception

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brungart, Douglas S.; Simpson, Brian D.; Chang, Peter S.; Wang, Deliang

    2005-04-01

    When a target speech signal is obscured by interfering speech, two distinct types of masking contribute to the resulting degradation in the intelligibility of the target talker: energetic masking caused by overlap in the time-frequency distribution of energy in the two voices, and informational masking caused by the listener's inability to correctly segregate the acoustic elements of the two voices into distinct streams. This study attempted to isolate the effects of energetic masking on multitalker speech perception with ideal time-frequency binary masks that retained those spectro-temporal regions of the acoustic mixture that were dominated by the target speech but eliminated those regions that were dominated by the interfering speech. This procedure removed the same phonetic information from the target speech that would ordinarily be lost due to energetic masking, but eliminated the possibility for the kinds of target-masker confusions that are thought to produce informational masking. The results suggest that energetic masking may play a surprisingly small role in the overall masking that occurs in certain types of multitalker speech signals. They also indicate that the number of competing talkers has a much greater influence than target-masker similarity on the amount of energetic masking that occurs in a multitalker stimulus.

  3. Testing Speech Recognition in Spanish-English Bilingual Children with the Computer-Assisted Speech Perception Assessment (CASPA): Initial Report.

    PubMed

    García, Paula B; Rosado Rogers, Lydia; Nishi, Kanae

    2016-01-01

    This study evaluated the English version of Computer-Assisted Speech Perception Assessment (E-CASPA) with Spanish-English bilingual children. E-CASPA has been evaluated with monolingual English speakers ages 5 years and older, but it is unknown whether a separate norm is necessary for bilingual children. Eleven Spanish-English bilingual and 12 English monolingual children (6 to 12 years old) with normal hearing participated. Responses were scored by word, phoneme, consonant, and vowel. Regardless of scores, performance across three signal-to-noise ratio conditions was similar between groups, suggesting that the same norm can be used for both bilingual and monolingual children.

  4. Effects of Ageing and Hearing Thresholds on Speech Perception in Quiet and in Noise Perceived in Different Locations

    PubMed Central

    Wahat, Nor Haniza Abdul; Mazlan, Rafidah

    2014-01-01

    Background and Objectives This study investigated the effect of ageing on speech perception in quiet and in noise, with noise directed from front, right and left. Subjects and Methods Sixty Malay native adults with normal or near normal hearing comprising of 20 young adults (21 to 39 years old), 20 middle aged (40 to 59 years old) and 20 older adults (60 to 74 years old) participated in this study. Their speech perception ability was measured using the Malay Hearing in Noise Test (HINT) in four test conditions; 1) in quiet (HINT Q), 2) with noise from front (HINT NF), 3) with noise from right (HINT NR), and 4) with noise from left (HINT NL). Reception thresholds for sentences (RTSs) were measured in each of the aforementioned conditions using an adaptive method. Results The results showed that, 1) genuine age-related decline was found in speech perception performance in HINT (NF), 2) hearing threshold was a major determinant differentiating speech perception performance for HINT (Q) and HINT (NL) conditions, and 3) speech perception performance for HINT (NR) was determined by both age and hearing threshold. Conclusions This study suggests that, in older adults, while hearing thresholds affect speech perception in quiet, other factors such as central auditory processing and cognitive functions might be more important determinant factors for speech perception performance in noise. PMID:25558404

  5. The Perception of Fluency in Native and Nonnative Speech

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bosker, Hans Rutger; Quené, Hugo; Sanders, Ted; de Jong, Nivja H.

    2014-01-01

    Where native speakers supposedly are fluent by default, nonnative speakers often have to strive hard to achieve a nativelike fluency level. However, disfluencies (such as pauses, fillers, repairs, etc.) occur in both native and nonnative speech and it is as yet unclear how fluency raters weigh the fluency characteristics of native and nonnative…

  6. Speech Perception in Noise by Children with Cochlear Implants

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Caldwell, Amanda; Nittrouer, Susan

    2013-01-01

    Purpose: Common wisdom suggests that listening in noise poses disproportionately greater difficulty for listeners with cochlear implants (CIs) than for peers with normal hearing (NH). The purpose of this study was to examine phonological, language, and cognitive skills that might help explain speech-in-noise abilities for children with CIs.…

  7. The Influence of Phonetic Dimensions on Aphasic Speech Perception

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hessler, Dorte; Jonkers, Roel; Bastiaanse, Roelien

    2010-01-01

    Individuals with aphasia have more problems detecting small differences between speech sounds than larger ones. This paper reports how phonemic processing is impaired and how this is influenced by speechreading. A non-word discrimination task was carried out with "audiovisual", "auditory only" and "visual only" stimulus display. Subjects had to…

  8. Visual Speech Perception in Children with Language Learning Impairments

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Knowland, Victoria C. P.; Evans, Sam; Snell, Caroline; Rosen, Stuart

    2016-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of the study was to assess the ability of children with developmental language learning impairments (LLIs) to use visual speech cues from the talking face. Method: In this cross-sectional study, 41 typically developing children (mean age: 8 years 0 months, range: 4 years 5 months to 11 years 10 months) and 27 children with…

  9. Left anterior temporal cortex actively engages in speech perception: A direct cortical stimulation study.

    PubMed

    Matsumoto, Riki; Imamura, Hisaji; Inouchi, Morito; Nakagawa, Tomokazu; Yokoyama, Yohei; Matsuhashi, Masao; Mikuni, Nobuhiro; Miyamoto, Susumu; Fukuyama, Hidenao; Takahashi, Ryosuke; Ikeda, Akio

    2011-04-01

    Recent neuroimaging studies proposed the importance of the anterior auditory pathway for speech comprehension. Its clinical significance is implicated by semantic dementia or pure word deafness. Neurodegenerative or cerebrovascular nature, however, precluded precise localization of the cortex responsible for speech perception. Electrical cortical stimulation could delineate such localization by producing transient, functional impairment. We investigated engagement of the left anterior temporal cortex in speech perception by means of direct electrical cortical stimulation. Subjects were two partial epilepsy patients, who underwent direct cortical stimulation as a part of invasive presurgical evaluations. Stimulus sites were coregistered to presurgical 3D-MRI, and then to MNI standard space for anatomical localization. Separate from the posterior temporal language area, electrical cortical stimulation revealed a well-restricted language area in the anterior part of the superior temporal sulcus and gyrus (aSTS/STG) in both patients. Auditory sentence comprehension was impaired upon electrical stimulation of aSTS/STG. In one patient, additional investigation revealed that the functional impairment was restricted to auditory sentence comprehension with preserved visual sentence comprehension and perception of music and environmental sounds. Both patients reported that they could hear the voice but not understand the sentence well (e.g., heard as a series of meaningless utterance). The standard coordinates of this restricted area at left aSTS/STG well corresponded with the coordinates of speech perception reported in neuroimaging activation studies in healthy subjects. The present combined anatomo-functional case study, for the first time, demonstrated that aSTS/STG in the language dominant hemisphere actively engages in speech perception.

  10. Infant directed speech and the development of speech perception: enhancing development or an unintended consequence?

    PubMed

    McMurray, Bob; Kovack-Lesh, Kristine A; Goodwin, Dresden; McEchron, William

    2013-11-01

    Infant directed speech (IDS) is a speech register characterized by simpler sentences, a slower rate, and more variable prosody. Recent work has implicated it in more subtle aspects of language development. Kuhl et al. (1997) demonstrated that segmental cues for vowels are affected by IDS in a way that may enhance development: the average locations of the extreme "point" vowels (/a/, /i/ and /u/) are further apart in acoustic space. If infants learn speech categories, in part, from the statistical distributions of such cues, these changes may specifically enhance speech category learning. We revisited this by asking (1) if these findings extend to a new cue (Voice Onset Time, a cue for voicing); (2) whether they extend to the interior vowels which are much harder to learn and/or discriminate; and (3) whether these changes may be an unintended phonetic consequence of factors like speaking rate or prosodic changes associated with IDS. Eighteen caregivers were recorded reading a picture book including minimal pairs for voicing (e.g., beach/peach) and a variety of vowels to either an adult or their infant. Acoustic measurements suggested that VOT was different in IDS, but not in a way that necessarily supports better development, and that these changes are almost entirely due to slower rate of speech of IDS. Measurements of the vowel suggested that in addition to changes in the mean, there was also an increase in variance, and statistical modeling suggests that this may counteract the benefit of any expansion of the vowel space. As a whole this suggests that changes in segmental cues associated with IDS may be an unintended by-product of the slower rate of speech and different prosodic structure, and do not necessarily derive from a motivation to enhance development.

  11. A Longitudinal Study of Speech Perception Skills and Device Characteristics of Adolescent Cochlear Implant Users

    PubMed Central

    Robinson, Elizabeth J.; Davidson, Lisa S.; Uchanski, Rosalie M.; Brenner, Christine M.; Geers, Ann E.

    2012-01-01

    Background For pediatric cochlear implant (CI) users, CI processor technology, map characteristics and fitting strategies are known to have a substantial impact on speech perception scores at young ages. It is unknown whether these benefits continue over time as these children reach adolescence. Purpose To document changes in CI technology, map characteristics, and speech perception scores in children between elementary grades and high school, and to describe relations between map characteristics and speech perception scores over time. Research Design A longitudinal design with participants 8–9 years old at session 1 and 15–18 years old at session 2. Study Sample Participants were 82 adolescents with unilateral CIs, who are a subset of a larger longitudinal study. Mean age at implantation was 3.4 years (range: 1.7 – 5.4), and mean duration of device use was 5.5 years (range: 3.8–7.5) at session 1 and 13.3 years (range: 10.9–15) at session 2. Data Collection and Analysis Speech perception tests at sessions 1 and 2 were the Lexical Neighborhood word Test (LNT-70) and Bamford-Kowal-Bench sentences in quiet (BKB-Q), presented at 70 dB SPL. At session 2, the LNT was also administered at 50 dB SPL (LNT-50) and BKB sentences were administered in noise with a +10 dB SNR (BKB-N). CI processor technology type and CI map characteristics (coding strategy, number of electrodes, map threshold levels [T levels], and map comfort levels [C levels]) were obtained at both sessions. Electrical dynamic range [EDR] was computed [C level – T level], and descriptive statistics, correlations, and repeated-measures ANOVAs were employed. Results Participants achieved significantly higher LNT and BKB scores, at 70 dB SPL, at ages 15-18 than at ages 8-9 years. Forty-two participants had 1-3 electrodes either activated or deactivated in their map between test sessions, and 40 had no change in number of active electrodes (mean change: -0.5; range: -3 to +2). After conversion from

  12. Large Scale Functional Brain Networks Underlying Temporal Integration of Audio-Visual Speech Perception: An EEG Study

    PubMed Central

    Kumar, G. Vinodh; Halder, Tamesh; Jaiswal, Amit K.; Mukherjee, Abhishek; Roy, Dipanjan; Banerjee, Arpan

    2016-01-01

    Observable lip movements of the speaker influence perception of auditory speech. A classical example of this influence is reported by listeners who perceive an illusory (cross-modal) speech sound (McGurk-effect) when presented with incongruent audio-visual (AV) speech stimuli. Recent neuroimaging studies of AV speech perception accentuate the role of frontal, parietal, and the integrative brain sites in the vicinity of the superior temporal sulcus (STS) for multisensory speech perception. However, if and how does the network across the whole brain participates during multisensory perception processing remains an open question. We posit that a large-scale functional connectivity among the neural population situated in distributed brain sites may provide valuable insights involved in processing and fusing of AV speech. Varying the psychophysical parameters in tandem with electroencephalogram (EEG) recordings, we exploited the trial-by-trial perceptual variability of incongruent audio-visual (AV) speech stimuli to identify the characteristics of the large-scale cortical network that facilitates multisensory perception during synchronous and asynchronous AV speech. We evaluated the spectral landscape of EEG signals during multisensory speech perception at varying AV lags. Functional connectivity dynamics for all sensor pairs was computed using the time-frequency global coherence, the vector sum of pairwise coherence changes over time. During synchronous AV speech, we observed enhanced global gamma-band coherence and decreased alpha and beta-band coherence underlying cross-modal (illusory) perception compared to unisensory perception around a temporal window of 300–600 ms following onset of stimuli. During asynchronous speech stimuli, a global broadband coherence was observed during cross-modal perception at earlier times along with pre-stimulus decreases of lower frequency power, e.g., alpha rhythms for positive AV lags and theta rhythms for negative AV lags. Thus

  13. Mapping the Developmental Trajectory and Correlates of Enhanced Pitch Perception on Speech Processing in Adults with ASD

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mayer, Jennifer L.; Hannent, Ian; Heaton, Pamela F.

    2016-01-01

    Whilst enhanced perception has been widely reported in individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASDs), relatively little is known about the developmental trajectory and impact of atypical auditory processing on speech perception in intellectually high-functioning adults with ASD. This paper presents data on perception of complex tones and…

  14. Neural network simulation of habituation and dishabituation in infant speech perception

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gauthier, Bruno; Shi, Rushen; Proulx, Robert

    2001-05-01

    The habituation techniques used in infant speech perception studies are based on the fact that infants show renewed interest towards novel stimuli. Recent work has shown the possibility of using artificial neural networks to model habituation and dishabituation (e.g., Schafer and Mareschal, 2001). In our study we examine weather the self-organizing-feature-maps (SOM) (Kohonen, 1989) are appropriate for modeling short-term habituation to a repeated speech stimulus. We found that although SOMs are particularly useful for simulating categorization, they can be modified to model habituation and dishabituation, so that they can be applied to direct comparisons with behavioral data on infants' speech discrimination abilities. In particular, we modified the SOMs to include additional parameters that control the relation of input similarity, lateral inhibition, and local and lateral activation between neurons. Preliminary results suggest that these parameters are sufficient for the network to simulate the loss of sensitivity of the auditory system due to the presentation of multiple tokens of a speech stimulus, as well as to model the recovery of sensitivity to a novel stimulus. The implications of this approach to infant speech perception research will be considered.

  15. Speaker's hand gestures modulate speech perception through phase resetting of ongoing neural oscillations.

    PubMed

    Biau, Emmanuel; Torralba, Mireia; Fuentemilla, Lluis; de Diego Balaguer, Ruth; Soto-Faraco, Salvador

    2015-07-01

    Speakers often accompany speech with spontaneous beat gestures in natural spoken communication. These gestures are usually aligned with lexical stress and can modulate the saliency of their affiliate words. Here we addressed the consequences of beat gestures on the neural correlates of speech perception. Previous studies have highlighted the role played by theta oscillations in temporal prediction of speech. We hypothesized that the sight of beat gestures may influence ongoing low-frequency neural oscillations around the onset of the corresponding words. Electroencephalographic (EEG) recordings were acquired while participants watched a continuous, naturally recorded discourse. The phase-locking value (PLV) at word onset was calculated from the EEG from pairs of identical words that had been pronounced with and without a concurrent beat gesture in the discourse. We observed an increase in PLV in the 5-6 Hz theta range as well as a desynchronization in the 8-10 Hz alpha band around the onset of words preceded by a beat gesture. These findings suggest that beats help tune low-frequency oscillatory activity at relevant moments during natural speech perception, providing a new insight of how speech and paralinguistic information are integrated. PMID:25595613

  16. The effect of visual spatial attention on audiovisual speech perception in adults with Asperger syndrome.

    PubMed

    Saalasti, Satu; Tiippana, Kaisa; Kätsyri, Jari; Sams, Mikko

    2011-09-01

    Individuals with Asperger syndrome (AS) have problems in following conversation, especially in the situations where several people are talking. This might result from impairments in audiovisual speech perception, especially from difficulties in focusing attention to speech-relevant visual information and ignoring distracting information. We studied the effect of visual spatial attention on the audiovisual speech perception of adult individuals with AS and matched control participants. Two faces were presented side by side, one uttering /aka/ and the other /ata/, while an auditory stimulus of /apa/ was played. The participants fixated on a central cross and directed their attention to the face that an arrow pointed to, reporting which consonant they heard. We hypothesized that the adults with AS would be more distracted by a competing talking face than the controls. Instead, they were able to covertly attend to the talking face, and they were as distracted by a competing face as the controls. Independently of the attentional effect, there was a qualitative difference in audiovisual speech perception: when the visual articulation was /aka/, the control participants heard /aka/ almost exclusively, while the participants with AS heard frequently /ata/. This finding may relate to difficulties in face-to-face communication in AS.

  17. Speech perception and quality of life of open-fit hearing aid users

    PubMed Central

    GARCIA, Tatiana Manfrini; JACOB, Regina Tangerino de Souza; MONDELLI, Maria Fernanda Capoani Garcia

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Objective To relate the performance of individuals with hearing loss at high frequencies in speech perception with the quality of life before and after the fitting of an open-fit hearing aid (HA). Methods The WHOQOL-BREF had been used before the fitting and 90 days after the use of HA. The Hearing in Noise Test (HINT) had been conducted in two phases: (1) at the time of fitting without an HA (situation A) and with an HA (situation B); (2) with an HA 90 days after fitting (situation C). Study Sample Thirty subjects with sensorineural hearing loss at high frequencies. Results By using an analysis of variance and the Tukey’s test comparing the three HINT situations in quiet and noisy environments, an improvement has been observed after the HA fitting. The results of the WHOQOL-BREF have showed an improvement in the quality of life after the HA fitting (paired t-test). The relationship between speech perception and quality of life before the HA fitting indicated a significant relationship between speech recognition in noisy environments and in the domain of social relations after the HA fitting (Pearson’s correlation coefficient). Conclusions The auditory stimulation has improved speech perception and the quality of life of individuals. PMID:27383708

  18. A role for amplitude modulation phase relationships in speech rhythm perception.

    PubMed

    Leong, Victoria; Stone, Michael A; Turner, Richard E; Goswami, Usha

    2014-07-01

    Prosodic rhythm in speech [the alternation of "Strong" (S) and "weak" (w) syllables] is cued, among others, by slow rates of amplitude modulation (AM) within the speech envelope. However, it is unclear exactly which envelope modulation rates and statistics are the most important for the rhythm percept. Here, the hypothesis that the phase relationship between "Stress" rate (∼2 Hz) and "Syllable" rate (∼4 Hz) AMs provides a perceptual cue for speech rhythm is tested. In a rhythm judgment task, adult listeners identified AM tone-vocoded nursery rhyme sentences that carried either trochaic (S-w) or iambic patterning (w-S). Manipulation of listeners' rhythm perception was attempted by parametrically phase-shifting the Stress AM and Syllable AM in the vocoder. It was expected that a 1π radian phase-shift (half a cycle) would reverse the perceived rhythm pattern (i.e., trochaic → iambic) whereas a 2π radian shift (full cycle) would retain the perceived rhythm pattern (i.e., trochaic → trochaic). The results confirmed these predictions. Listeners judgments of rhythm systematically followed Stress-Syllable AM phase-shifts, but were unaffected by phase-shifts between the Syllable AM and the Sub-beat AM (∼14 Hz) in a control condition. It is concluded that the Stress-Syllable AM phase relationship is an envelope-based modulation statistic that supports speech rhythm perception. PMID:24993221

  19. The Structural Correlates of Statistical Information Processing during Speech Perception

    PubMed Central

    Deschamps, Isabelle; Hasson, Uri; Tremblay, Pascale

    2016-01-01

    The processing of continuous and complex auditory signals such as speech relies on the ability to use statistical cues (e.g. transitional probabilities). In this study, participants heard short auditory sequences composed either of Italian syllables or bird songs and completed a regularity-rating task. Behaviorally, participants were better at differentiating between levels of regularity in the syllable sequences than in the bird song sequences. Inter-individual differences in sensitivity to regularity for speech stimuli were correlated with variations in surface-based cortical thickness (CT). These correlations were found in several cortical areas including regions previously associated with statistical structure processing (e.g. bilateral superior temporal sulcus, left precentral sulcus and inferior frontal gyrus), as well other regions (e.g. left insula, bilateral superior frontal gyrus/sulcus and supramarginal gyrus). In all regions, this correlation was positive suggesting that thicker cortex is related to higher sensitivity to variations in the statistical structure of auditory sequences. Overall, these results suggest that inter-individual differences in CT within a distributed network of cortical regions involved in statistical structure processing, attention and memory is predictive of the ability to detect structural structure in auditory speech sequences. PMID:26919234

  20. Relationship between Speech Perception and Level of Satisfaction of Hearing Aid Users

    PubMed Central

    Mantello, Erika Barioni; Silva, Carla Dias da; Massuda, Eduardo Tanaka; Hyppolito, Miguel Angelo; Reis, Ana Cláudia Mirândola Barbosa dos

    2015-01-01

    Introduction Hearing difficulties can be minimized by the use of hearing aids. Objective The objective of this study is to assess the speech perception and satisfaction of hearing aids users before and after aid adaptation and to determine whether these measures are correlated. Methods The study was conducted on 65 individuals, 54% females and 46% males aged 63 years on average, after the systematic use of hearing aids for at least three months. We characterized subjectś personal identification data, the degree, and configuration of hearing loss, as well as aspects related to adaptation. We then applied a satisfaction questionnaire and a speech perception test (words and sentences), with and without the use of the hearing aids. Results Mean speech recognition with words and sentences was 69% and 79%, respectively, with hearing aids use; whereas, without hearing aids use the figures were 43% and 53%. Mean questionnaire score was 30.1 points. Regarding hearing loss characteristics, 78.5% of the subjects had a sensorineural loss, 20% a mixed loss, and 1.5% a conductive loss. Hearing loss of moderate degree was present in 60.5% of cases, loss of descending configuration in 47%, and plain loss in 37.5%. There was no correlation between individual satisfaction and the percentages of the speech perception tests applied. Conclusion Word and sentence recognition was significantly better with the use of the hearing aids. The users showed a high degree of satisfaction. In the present study, there was no correlation observed between the levels of speech perception and levels of user satisfaction measured with the questionnaire. PMID:27746833

  1. Accent, intelligibility, and comprehensibility in the perception of foreign-accented Lombard speech

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Chi-Nin

    2003-10-01

    Speech produced in noise (Lombard speech) has been reported to be more intelligible than speech produced in quiet (normal speech). This study examined the perception of non-native Lombard speech in terms of intelligibility, comprehensibility, and degree of foreign accent. Twelve Cantonese speakers and a comparison group of English speakers read simple true and false English statements in quiet and in 70 dB of masking noise. Lombard and normal utterances were mixed with noise at a constant signal-to-noise ratio, and presented along with noise-free stimuli to eight new English listeners who provided transcription scores, comprehensibility ratings, and accent ratings. Analyses showed that, as expected, utterances presented in noise were less well perceived than were noise-free sentences, and that the Cantonese speakers' productions were more accented, but less intelligible and less comprehensible than those of the English speakers. For both groups of speakers, the Lombard sentences were correctly transcribed more often than their normal utterances in noisy conditions. However, the Cantonese-accented Lombard sentences were not rated as easier to understand than was the normal speech in all conditions. The assigned accent ratings were similar throughout all listening conditions. Implications of these findings will be discussed.

  2. The impact of phonetic dissimilarity on the perception of foreign accented speech

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weil, Shawn A.

    2003-10-01

    Non-normative speech (i.e., synthetic speech, pathological speech, foreign accented speech) is more difficult to process for native listeners than is normative speech. Does perceptual dissimilarity affect only intelligibility, or are there other costs to processing? The current series of experiments investigates both the intelligibility and time course of foreign accented speech (FAS) perception. Native English listeners heard single English words spoken by both native English speakers and non-native speakers (Mandarin or Russian). Words were chosen based on the similarity between the phonetic inventories of the respective languages. Three experimental designs were used: a cross-modal matching task, a word repetition (shadowing) task, and two subjective ratings tasks which measured impressions of accentedness and effortfulness. The results replicate previous investigations that have found that FAS significantly lowers word intelligibility. Furthermore, in FAS as well as perceptual effort, in the word repetition task, correct responses are slower to accented words than to nonaccented words. An analysis indicates that both intelligibility and reaction time are, in part, functions of the similarity between the talker's utterance and the listener's representation of the word.

  3. Reading fluency and speech perception speed of beginning readers with persistent reading problems: the perception of initial stop consonants and consonant clusters

    PubMed Central

    van der Leij, Aryan; Blok, Henk; de Jong, Peter F.

    2010-01-01

    This study investigated the role of speech perception accuracy and speed in fluent word decoding of reading disabled (RD) children. A same-different phoneme discrimination task with natural speech tested the perception of single consonants and consonant clusters by young but persistent RD children. RD children were slower than chronological age (CA) controls in recognizing identical sounds, suggesting less distinct phonemic categories. In addition, after controlling for phonetic similarity Tallal’s (Brain Lang 9:182–198, 1980) fast transitions account of RD children’s speech perception problems was contrasted with Studdert-Kennedy’s (Read Writ Interdiscip J 15:5–14, 2002) similarity explanation. Results showed no specific RD deficit in perceiving fast transitions. Both phonetic similarity and fast transitions influenced accurate speech perception for RD children as well as CA controls. PMID:20652455

  4. Reading fluency and speech perception speed of beginning readers with persistent reading problems: the perception of initial stop consonants and consonant clusters.

    PubMed

    Snellings, Patrick; van der Leij, Aryan; Blok, Henk; de Jong, Peter F

    2010-12-01

    This study investigated the role of speech perception accuracy and speed in fluent word decoding of reading disabled (RD) children. A same-different phoneme discrimination task with natural speech tested the perception of single consonants and consonant clusters by young but persistent RD children. RD children were slower than chronological age (CA) controls in recognizing identical sounds, suggesting less distinct phonemic categories. In addition, after controlling for phonetic similarity Tallal's (Brain Lang 9:182-198, 1980) fast transitions account of RD children's speech perception problems was contrasted with Studdert-Kennedy's (Read Writ Interdiscip J 15:5-14, 2002) similarity explanation. Results showed no specific RD deficit in perceiving fast transitions. Both phonetic similarity and fast transitions influenced accurate speech perception for RD children as well as CA controls.

  5. Evaluation of Speech-Perception Training for Hearing Aid Users: A Multisite Study in Progress.

    PubMed

    Miller, James D; Watson, Charles S; Dubno, Judy R; Leek, Marjorie R

    2015-11-01

    Following an overview of theoretical issues in speech-perception training and of previous efforts to enhance hearing aid use through training, a multisite study, designed to evaluate the efficacy of two types of computerized speech-perception training for adults who use hearing aids, is described. One training method focuses on the identification of 109 syllable constituents (45 onsets, 28 nuclei, and 36 codas) in quiet and in noise, and on the perception of words in sentences presented in various levels of noise. In a second type of training, participants listen to 6- to 7-minute narratives in noise and are asked several questions about each narrative. Two groups of listeners are trained, each using one of these types of training, performed in a laboratory setting. The training for both groups is preceded and followed by a series of speech-perception tests. Subjects listen in a sound field while wearing their hearing aids at their usual settings. The training continues over 15 to 20 visits, with subjects completing at least 30 hours of focused training with one of the two methods. The two types of training are described in detail, together with a summary of other perceptual and cognitive measures obtained from all participants. PMID:27587914

  6. Speech perception, rapid temporal processing, and the left hemisphere: a case study of unilateral pure word deafness.

    PubMed

    Slevc, L Robert; Martin, Randi C; Hamilton, A Cris; Joanisse, Marc F

    2011-01-01

    The mechanisms and functional anatomy underlying the early stages of speech perception are still not well understood. One way to investigate the cognitive and neural underpinnings of speech perception is by investigating patients with speech perception deficits but with preserved ability in other domains of language. One such case is reported here: patient NL shows highly impaired speech perception despite normal hearing ability and preserved semantic knowledge, speaking, and reading ability, and is thus classified as a case of pure word deafness (PWD). NL has a left temporoparietal lesion without right hemisphere damage and DTI imaging suggests that he has preserved cross-hemispheric connectivity, arguing against an account of PWD as a disconnection of left lateralized language areas from auditory input. Two experiments investigated whether NL's speech perception deficit could instead result from an underlying problem with rapid temporal processing. Experiment 1 showed that NL has particular difficulty discriminating sounds that differ in terms of rapid temporal changes, be they speech or non-speech sounds. Experiment 2 employed an intensive training program designed to improve rapid temporal processing in language impaired children (Fast ForWord; Scientific Learning Corporation, Oakland, CA) and found that NL was able to improve his ability to discriminate rapid temporal differences in non-speech sounds, but not in speech sounds. Overall, these data suggest that patients with unilateral PWD may, in fact, have a deficit in (left lateralized) temporal processing ability, however they also show that a rapid temporal processing deficit is, by itself, unable to account for this patient's speech perception deficit.

  7. The discrepancy in the perception of the public-political speech in Croatia.

    PubMed

    Tanta, Ivan; Lesinger, Gordana

    2014-03-01

    Key place in this paper takes the study of political speech in the Republic of Croatia and their impact on voters, or which keywords are in political speeches and public appearances of politicians in Croatia that their voting body wants to hear. Given listed below we will define the research topic in the form of a question - is there a discrepancy in the perception of the public-political speech in Croatia, and which keywords are specific to the two main regions in Croatia and that inhabitant these regions respond. Marcus Tullius Cicero, the most important Roman orator, he used a specific associative mnemonic technique that is called "technique room". He would talk expound on keywords and conceptual terms that he needed for the desired topic and join in these make them, according to the desired order, in a very creative and unique way, the premises of the house or palace, which he knew well. Then, while holding the speech intended to pass through rooms of the house or palace and then put keywords and concepts come to mind, again according to the desired order. Given that this is a specific kind of research political speech that is relatively recent in Croatia, it should be noted that there is still, this kind of political communication is not sufficiently explored. Particularly the emphasis on the impact and use of keywords specific to the Republic of Croatia, in everyday public and political communication. The paper will be analyzed the political, campaign speeches and promises several winning candidates, and now Croatian MEPs, specific keywords related to: economics, culture, science, education and health. The analysis is based on comparison of the survey results on the representation of key words in the speeches of politicians and qualitative analysis of the speeches of politicians on key words during the election campaign.

  8. The discrepancy in the perception of the public-political speech in Croatia.

    PubMed

    Tanta, Ivan; Lesinger, Gordana

    2014-03-01

    Key place in this paper takes the study of political speech in the Republic of Croatia and their impact on voters, or which keywords are in political speeches and public appearances of politicians in Croatia that their voting body wants to hear. Given listed below we will define the research topic in the form of a question - is there a discrepancy in the perception of the public-political speech in Croatia, and which keywords are specific to the two main regions in Croatia and that inhabitant these regions respond. Marcus Tullius Cicero, the most important Roman orator, he used a specific associative mnemonic technique that is called "technique room". He would talk expound on keywords and conceptual terms that he needed for the desired topic and join in these make them, according to the desired order, in a very creative and unique way, the premises of the house or palace, which he knew well. Then, while holding the speech intended to pass through rooms of the house or palace and then put keywords and concepts come to mind, again according to the desired order. Given that this is a specific kind of research political speech that is relatively recent in Croatia, it should be noted that there is still, this kind of political communication is not sufficiently explored. Particularly the emphasis on the impact and use of keywords specific to the Republic of Croatia, in everyday public and political communication. The paper will be analyzed the political, campaign speeches and promises several winning candidates, and now Croatian MEPs, specific keywords related to: economics, culture, science, education and health. The analysis is based on comparison of the survey results on the representation of key words in the speeches of politicians and qualitative analysis of the speeches of politicians on key words during the election campaign. PMID:24851633

  9. Fusions as a Source of Information on Higher-Order Influences Upon Speech Perception. CUNYForum, No. 4, 1978.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cowart, Wayne

    This paper suggests that some features of the syntactic and semantic structure of sentences sometimes influence the phonemic analyses assigned to stretches of speech by the perceptual system. It is argued that the role of higher-order levels of linguistic analysis in speech perception can be productively studied. Theoretical issues appropriate for…

  10. Auditory cortical deactivation during speech production and following speech perception: an EEG investigation of the temporal dynamics of the auditory alpha rhythm.

    PubMed

    Jenson, David; Harkrider, Ashley W; Thornton, David; Bowers, Andrew L; Saltuklaroglu, Tim

    2015-01-01

    Sensorimotor integration (SMI) across the dorsal stream enables online monitoring of speech. Jenson et al. (2014) used independent component analysis (ICA) and event related spectral perturbation (ERSP) analysis of electroencephalography (EEG) data to describe anterior sensorimotor (e.g., premotor cortex, PMC) activity during speech perception and production. The purpose of the current study was to identify and temporally map neural activity from posterior (i.e., auditory) regions of the dorsal stream in the same tasks. Perception tasks required "active" discrimination of syllable pairs (/ba/ and /da/) in quiet and noisy conditions. Production conditions required overt production of syllable pairs and nouns. ICA performed on concatenated raw 68 channel EEG data from all tasks identified bilateral "auditory" alpha (α) components in 15 of 29 participants localized to pSTG (left) and pMTG (right). ERSP analyses were performed to reveal fluctuations in the spectral power of the α rhythm clusters across time. Production conditions were characterized by significant α event related synchronization (ERS; pFDR < 0.05) concurrent with EMG activity from speech production, consistent with speech-induced auditory inhibition. Discrimination conditions were also characterized by α ERS following stimulus offset. Auditory α ERS in all conditions temporally aligned with PMC activity reported in Jenson et al. (2014). These findings are indicative of speech-induced suppression of auditory regions, possibly via efference copy. The presence of the same pattern following stimulus offset in discrimination conditions suggests that sensorimotor contributions following speech perception reflect covert replay, and that covert replay provides one source of the motor activity previously observed in some speech perception tasks. To our knowledge, this is the first time that inhibition of auditory regions by speech has been observed in real-time with the ICA/ERSP technique. PMID:26500519

  11. Auditory cortical deactivation during speech production and following speech perception: an EEG investigation of the temporal dynamics of the auditory alpha rhythm

    PubMed Central

    Jenson, David; Harkrider, Ashley W.; Thornton, David; Bowers, Andrew L.; Saltuklaroglu, Tim

    2015-01-01

    Sensorimotor integration (SMI) across the dorsal stream enables online monitoring of speech. Jenson et al. (2014) used independent component analysis (ICA) and event related spectral perturbation (ERSP) analysis of electroencephalography (EEG) data to describe anterior sensorimotor (e.g., premotor cortex, PMC) activity during speech perception and production. The purpose of the current study was to identify and temporally map neural activity from posterior (i.e., auditory) regions of the dorsal stream in the same tasks. Perception tasks required “active” discrimination of syllable pairs (/ba/ and /da/) in quiet and noisy conditions. Production conditions required overt production of syllable pairs and nouns. ICA performed on concatenated raw 68 channel EEG data from all tasks identified bilateral “auditory” alpha (α) components in 15 of 29 participants localized to pSTG (left) and pMTG (right). ERSP analyses were performed to reveal fluctuations in the spectral power of the α rhythm clusters across time. Production conditions were characterized by significant α event related synchronization (ERS; pFDR < 0.05) concurrent with EMG activity from speech production, consistent with speech-induced auditory inhibition. Discrimination conditions were also characterized by α ERS following stimulus offset. Auditory α ERS in all conditions temporally aligned with PMC activity reported in Jenson et al. (2014). These findings are indicative of speech-induced suppression of auditory regions, possibly via efference copy. The presence of the same pattern following stimulus offset in discrimination conditions suggests that sensorimotor contributions following speech perception reflect covert replay, and that covert replay provides one source of the motor activity previously observed in some speech perception tasks. To our knowledge, this is the first time that inhibition of auditory regions by speech has been observed in real-time with the ICA/ERSP technique. PMID

  12. Perception of audio-visual speech synchrony in Spanish-speaking children with and without specific language impairment

    PubMed Central

    PONS, FERRAN; ANDREU, LLORENC.; SANZ-TORRENT, MONICA; BUIL-LEGAZ, LUCIA; LEWKOWICZ, DAVID J.

    2014-01-01

    Speech perception involves the integration of auditory and visual articulatory information and, thus, requires the perception of temporal synchrony between this information. There is evidence that children with Specific Language Impairment (SLI) have difficulty with auditory speech perception but it is not known if this is also true for the integration of auditory and visual speech. Twenty Spanish-speaking children with SLI, twenty typically developing age-matched Spanish-speaking children, and twenty Spanish-speaking children matched for MLU-w participated in an eye-tracking study to investigate the perception of audiovisual speech synchrony. Results revealed that children with typical language development perceived an audiovisual asynchrony of 666ms regardless of whether the auditory or visual speech attribute led the other one. Children with SLI only detected the 666 ms asynchrony when the auditory component followed the visual component. None of the groups perceived an audiovisual asynchrony of 366ms. These results suggest that the difficulty of speech processing by children with SLI would also involve difficulties in integrating auditory and visual aspects of speech perception. PMID:22874648

  13. A Multidimensional Scaling Study of Native and Non-Native Listeners' Perception of Second Language Speech.

    PubMed

    Foote, Jennifer A; Trofimovich, Pavel

    2016-04-01

    Second language speech learning is predicated on learners' ability to notice differences between their own language output and that of their interlocutors. Because many learners interact primarily with other second language users, it is crucial to understand which dimensions underlie the perception of second language speech by learners, compared to native speakers. For this study, 15 non-native and 10 native English speakers rated 30-s language audio-recordings from controlled reading and interview tasks for dissimilarity, using all pairwise combinations of recordings. PROXSCAL multidimensional scaling analyses revealed fluency and aspects of speakers' pronunciation as components underlying listener judgments but showed little agreement across listeners. Results contribute to an understanding of why second language speech learning is difficult and provide implications for language training. PMID:27166328

  14. A Multidimensional Scaling Study of Native and Non-Native Listeners' Perception of Second Language Speech.

    PubMed

    Foote, Jennifer A; Trofimovich, Pavel

    2016-04-01

    Second language speech learning is predicated on learners' ability to notice differences between their own language output and that of their interlocutors. Because many learners interact primarily with other second language users, it is crucial to understand which dimensions underlie the perception of second language speech by learners, compared to native speakers. For this study, 15 non-native and 10 native English speakers rated 30-s language audio-recordings from controlled reading and interview tasks for dissimilarity, using all pairwise combinations of recordings. PROXSCAL multidimensional scaling analyses revealed fluency and aspects of speakers' pronunciation as components underlying listener judgments but showed little agreement across listeners. Results contribute to an understanding of why second language speech learning is difficult and provide implications for language training.

  15. Turn-taking: From perception to speech preparation.

    PubMed

    Wesselmeier, Hendrik; Müller, Horst M

    2015-11-16

    We investigated the preparation of a spoken answer response to interrogative sentences by measuring response time (RT) and the response-related readiness potential (RP). By comparing the RT and RP results we aimed to identify whether the RP-onset is more related to the actual speech preparation process or the pure intention to speak after turn-anticipation. Additionally, we investigated if the RP-onset can be influenced by the syntactic structure (one or two completion points). Therefore, the EEG data were sorted based on two variables: the cognitive load required for the response and the syntactic structure of the stimulus questions. The results of the response utterance preparation associated event-related potential (ERP) and the RT suggest that the RP-onset is more related to the actual speech preparation process rather than the pure intention to speak after turn-anticipation. However, the RP-onset can be influenced by the syntactic structure of the question leading to an early response preparation. PMID:26483323

  16. A speech-perception training tool to improve phonetic transcription

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Padgitt, Noelle R.; Munson, Benjamin; Carney, Edward J.

    2005-09-01

    University instruction in phonetics requires students to associate a set of quasialphabetic symbols and diacritics with speech sounds. In the case of narrow phonetic transcription, students are required to associate symbols with sounds that do not function contrastively in the language. This learning task is challenging, given that students must discriminate among different variants of sounds that are not used to convey differences in lexical meaning. Consequently, many students fail to learn phonetic transcription to a level of proficiency needed for practical application (B. Munson and K. N. Brinkman, Am. J. Speech Lang. Path. [2004]). In an effort to improve students' phonetic transcription skills, a computerized training program was developed to trains students' discrimination and identification of selected phonetic contrasts. The design of the training tool was based on similar tools that have been used to train phonetic contrasts in second-language learners of English (e.g., A. Bradlow et al., J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 102, 3115 [1997]). It consists of multiple stages (bombardment, discrimination, identification) containing phonetic contrasts that students have identified as particularly difficult to perceive. This presentation will provide a demonstration of the training tool, and will present preliminary data on the efficacy of this tool in improving students' phonetic transcription abilities.

  17. A speech perception test for children in classrooms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Feijoo, Sergio; Fernandez, Santiago; Alvarez, Jose Manuel

    2002-11-01

    The combined effects of excessive ambient noise and reverberation in classrooms interfere with speech recognition and tend to degrade the learning process of young children. This paper reports a detailed analysis of a speech recognition test carried out with two different children populations of ages 8-9 and 10-11. Unlike English, Spanish has few minimal pairs to be used for phoneme recognition in a closed set manner. The test consisted in a series of two-syllable nonsense words formed by the combination of all possible syllables in Spanish. The test was administered to the children as a dictation task in which they had to write down the words spoken by their female teacher. The test was administered in two blocks on different days, and later repeated to analyze its consistency. The rationale for this procedure was (a) the test should reproduce normal academic situations, (b) all phonological and lexical context effects should be avoided, (c) errors in both words and phonemes should be scored to unveil any possible acoustic base for them. Although word recognition scores were similar among age groups and repetitions, phoneme errors showed high variability questioning the validity of such a test for classroom assessment.

  18. Speech Perception and Lexical Effects in Specific Language Impairment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schwartz, Richard G.; Scheffler, Frances L. V.; Lopez, Karece

    2013-01-01

    Using an identification task, we examined lexical effects on the perception of vowel duration as a cue to final consonant voicing in 12 children with specific language impairment (SLI) and 13 age-matched (6;6-9;6) peers with typical language development (TLD). Naturally recorded CVtsets [word-word (WW), nonword-nonword (NN), word-nonword (WN) and…

  19. Lexical Effects on Speech Perception in Individuals with "Autistic" Traits

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stewart, Mary E.; Ota, Mitsuhiko

    2008-01-01

    It has been claimed that Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is characterized by a limited ability to process perceptual stimuli in reference to the contextual information of the percept. Such a connection between a nonholistic processing style and behavioral traits associated with ASD is thought to exist also within the neurotypical population albeit…

  20. Cerebral specialization for speech perception and movement organization in adults with Down's syndrome.

    PubMed

    Elliott, D; Weeks, D J

    1993-03-01

    Adults with Down's syndrome and a group of undifferentiated mentally handicapped persons were examined using a free recall dichotic listening procedure to determine a laterality index for the perception of speech sounds. Subjects also performed both the visual and verbal portions of a standard apraxia battery. As in previous research, subjects with Down's syndrome tended to display a left ear advantage on the dichotic listening test. As well, they performed better on the apraxia battery when movements were cued visually rather than verbally. This verbal-motor disadvantage increased as the left ear dichotic listening advantage became more pronounced. It is argued that the verbal-motor difficulties experienced by persons with Down's syndrome stem from a dissociation of the functional systems responsible for speech perception and movement organization (Elliott and Weeks, 1990). PMID:8472548

  1. Speech-perception training for older adults with hearing loss impacts word recognition and effort.

    PubMed

    Kuchinsky, Stefanie E; Ahlstrom, Jayne B; Cute, Stephanie L; Humes, Larry E; Dubno, Judy R; Eckert, Mark A

    2014-10-01

    The current pupillometry study examined the impact of speech-perception training on word recognition and cognitive effort in older adults with hearing loss. Trainees identified more words at the follow-up than at the baseline session. Training also resulted in an overall larger and faster peaking pupillary response, even when controlling for performance and reaction time. Perceptual and cognitive capacities affected the peak amplitude of the pupil response across participants but did not diminish the impact of training on the other pupil metrics. Thus, we demonstrated that pupillometry can be used to characterize training-related and individual differences in effort during a challenging listening task. Importantly, the results indicate that speech-perception training not only affects overall word recognition, but also a physiological metric of cognitive effort, which has the potential to be a biomarker of hearing loss intervention outcome.

  2. Speech-perception training for older adults with hearing loss impacts word recognition and effort

    PubMed Central

    Kuchinsky, Stefanie E.; Ahlstrom, Jayne B.; Cute, Stephanie L.; Humes, Larry E.; Dubno, Judy R.; Eckert, Mark A.

    2014-01-01

    The current pupillometry study examined the impact of speech-perception training on word recognition and cognitive effort in older adults with hearing loss. Trainees identified more words at the follow-up than at the baseline session. Training also resulted in an overall larger and faster peaking pupillary response, even when controlling for performance and reaction time. Perceptual and cognitive capacities affected the peak amplitude of the pupil response across participants but did not diminish the impact of training on the other pupil metrics. Thus, we demonstrated that pupillometry can be used to characterize training-related and individual differences in effort during a challenging listening task. Importantly, the results indicate that speech-perception training not only affects overall word recognition, but also a physiological metric of cognitive effort, which has the potential to be a biomarker of hearing loss intervention outcome. PMID:24909603

  3. Electrophysiological correlates of speech perception mechanisms and individual differences in second language attainment.

    PubMed

    Jakoby, Hilla; Goldstein, Abraham; Faust, Miriam

    2011-11-01

    In an increasingly globalized world mastering a second language (L2) provides a clear advantage. However, after early childhood, not everyone can easily learn a foreign language. The present study explored whether the large variability found in L2 attainment in the normal population, not diagnosed as learning disabled, is related to preattentive speech perception abilities. Using event-related potentials (ERPs) we examined the mismatch negativity, P3a, and the late discriminative negativity (MMN-P3a-LDN) complex, which served as an index for preattentive foreign phonological contrast discrimination abilities. Our results show that, compared to unsuccessful L2 learners, successful L2 learners had shorter latencies of the MMN and P3a components and higher amplitudes of the LDN component. These results suggest that unsuccessful L2 learners have a deficient speech perception mechanism.

  4. Speech-perception training for older adults with hearing loss impacts word recognition and effort.

    PubMed

    Kuchinsky, Stefanie E; Ahlstrom, Jayne B; Cute, Stephanie L; Humes, Larry E; Dubno, Judy R; Eckert, Mark A

    2014-10-01

    The current pupillometry study examined the impact of speech-perception training on word recognition and cognitive effort in older adults with hearing loss. Trainees identified more words at the follow-up than at the baseline session. Training also resulted in an overall larger and faster peaking pupillary response, even when controlling for performance and reaction time. Perceptual and cognitive capacities affected the peak amplitude of the pupil response across participants but did not diminish the impact of training on the other pupil metrics. Thus, we demonstrated that pupillometry can be used to characterize training-related and individual differences in effort during a challenging listening task. Importantly, the results indicate that speech-perception training not only affects overall word recognition, but also a physiological metric of cognitive effort, which has the potential to be a biomarker of hearing loss intervention outcome. PMID:24909603

  5. Speech perception in the child brain: cortical timing and its relevance to literacy acquisition.

    PubMed

    Parviainen, Tiina; Helenius, Päivi; Poskiparta, Elisa; Niemi, Pekka; Salmelin, Riitta

    2011-12-01

    Speech processing skills go through intensive development during mid-childhood, providing basis also for literacy acquisition. The sequence of auditory cortical processing of speech has been characterized in adults, but very little is known about the neural representation of speech sound perception in the developing brain. We used whole-head magnetoencephalography (MEG) to record neural responses to speech and nonspeech sounds in first-graders (7-8-year-old) and compared the activation sequence to that in adults. In children, the general location of neural activity in the superior temporal cortex was similar to that in adults, but in the time domain the sequence of activation was strikingly different. Cortical differentiation between sound types emerged in a prolonged response pattern at about 250 ms after sound onset, in both hemispheres, clearly later than the corresponding effect at about 100 ms in adults that was detected specifically in the left hemisphere. Better reading skills were linked with shorter-lasting neural activation, speaking for interdependence of the maturing neural processes of auditory perception and developing linguistic skills. This study uniquely utilized the potential of MEG in comparing both spatial and temporal characteristics of neural activation between adults and children. Besides depicting the group-typical features in cortical auditory processing, the results revealed marked interindividual variability in children.

  6. Visual and Auditory Components in the Perception of Asynchronous Audiovisual Speech.

    PubMed

    García-Pérez, Miguel A; Alcalá-Quintana, Rocío

    2015-12-01

    Research on asynchronous audiovisual speech perception manipulates experimental conditions to observe their effects on synchrony judgments. Probabilistic models establish a link between the sensory and decisional processes underlying such judgments and the observed data, via interpretable parameters that allow testing hypotheses and making inferences about how experimental manipulations affect such processes. Two models of this type have recently been proposed, one based on independent channels and the other using a Bayesian approach. Both models are fitted here to a common data set, with a subsequent analysis of the interpretation they provide about how experimental manipulations affected the processes underlying perceived synchrony. The data consist of synchrony judgments as a function of audiovisual offset in a speech stimulus, under four within-subjects manipulations of the quality of the visual component. The Bayesian model could not accommodate asymmetric data, was rejected by goodness-of-fit statistics for 8/16 observers, and was found to be nonidentifiable, which renders uninterpretable parameter estimates. The independent-channels model captured asymmetric data, was rejected for only 1/16 observers, and identified how sensory and decisional processes mediating asynchronous audiovisual speech perception are affected by manipulations that only alter the quality of the visual component of the speech signal.

  7. Hierarchical Organization of Auditory and Motor Representations in Speech Perception: Evidence from Searchlight Similarity Analysis.

    PubMed

    Evans, Samuel; Davis, Matthew H

    2015-12-01

    How humans extract the identity of speech sounds from highly variable acoustic signals remains unclear. Here, we use searchlight representational similarity analysis (RSA) to localize and characterize neural representations of syllables at different levels of the hierarchically organized temporo-frontal pathways for speech perception. We asked participants to listen to spoken syllables that differed considerably in their surface acoustic form by changing speaker and degrading surface acoustics using noise-vocoding and sine wave synthesis while we recorded neural responses with functional magnetic resonance imaging. We found evidence for a graded hierarchy of abstraction across the brain. At the peak of the hierarchy, neural representations in somatomotor cortex encoded syllable identity but not surface acoustic form, at the base of the hierarchy, primary auditory cortex showed the reverse. In contrast, bilateral temporal cortex exhibited an intermediate response, encoding both syllable identity and the surface acoustic form of speech. Regions of somatomotor cortex associated with encoding syllable identity in perception were also engaged when producing the same syllables in a separate session. These findings are consistent with a hierarchical account of how variable acoustic signals are transformed into abstract representations of the identity of speech sounds. PMID:26157026

  8. Visual and Auditory Components in the Perception of Asynchronous Audiovisual Speech.

    PubMed

    García-Pérez, Miguel A; Alcalá-Quintana, Rocío

    2015-12-01

    Research on asynchronous audiovisual speech perception manipulates experimental conditions to observe their effects on synchrony judgments. Probabilistic models establish a link between the sensory and decisional processes underlying such judgments and the observed data, via interpretable parameters that allow testing hypotheses and making inferences about how experimental manipulations affect such processes. Two models of this type have recently been proposed, one based on independent channels and the other using a Bayesian approach. Both models are fitted here to a common data set, with a subsequent analysis of the interpretation they provide about how experimental manipulations affected the processes underlying perceived synchrony. The data consist of synchrony judgments as a function of audiovisual offset in a speech stimulus, under four within-subjects manipulations of the quality of the visual component. The Bayesian model could not accommodate asymmetric data, was rejected by goodness-of-fit statistics for 8/16 observers, and was found to be nonidentifiable, which renders uninterpretable parameter estimates. The independent-channels model captured asymmetric data, was rejected for only 1/16 observers, and identified how sensory and decisional processes mediating asynchronous audiovisual speech perception are affected by manipulations that only alter the quality of the visual component of the speech signal. PMID:27551361

  9. Hierarchical Organization of Auditory and Motor Representations in Speech Perception: Evidence from Searchlight Similarity Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Evans, Samuel; Davis, Matthew H.

    2015-01-01

    How humans extract the identity of speech sounds from highly variable acoustic signals remains unclear. Here, we use searchlight representational similarity analysis (RSA) to localize and characterize neural representations of syllables at different levels of the hierarchically organized temporo-frontal pathways for speech perception. We asked participants to listen to spoken syllables that differed considerably in their surface acoustic form by changing speaker and degrading surface acoustics using noise-vocoding and sine wave synthesis while we recorded neural responses with functional magnetic resonance imaging. We found evidence for a graded hierarchy of abstraction across the brain. At the peak of the hierarchy, neural representations in somatomotor cortex encoded syllable identity but not surface acoustic form, at the base of the hierarchy, primary auditory cortex showed the reverse. In contrast, bilateral temporal cortex exhibited an intermediate response, encoding both syllable identity and the surface acoustic form of speech. Regions of somatomotor cortex associated with encoding syllable identity in perception were also engaged when producing the same syllables in a separate session. These findings are consistent with a hierarchical account of how variable acoustic signals are transformed into abstract representations of the identity of speech sounds. PMID:26157026

  10. Visual and Auditory Components in the Perception of Asynchronous Audiovisual Speech

    PubMed Central

    Alcalá-Quintana, Rocío

    2015-01-01

    Research on asynchronous audiovisual speech perception manipulates experimental conditions to observe their effects on synchrony judgments. Probabilistic models establish a link between the sensory and decisional processes underlying such judgments and the observed data, via interpretable parameters that allow testing hypotheses and making inferences about how experimental manipulations affect such processes. Two models of this type have recently been proposed, one based on independent channels and the other using a Bayesian approach. Both models are fitted here to a common data set, with a subsequent analysis of the interpretation they provide about how experimental manipulations affected the processes underlying perceived synchrony. The data consist of synchrony judgments as a function of audiovisual offset in a speech stimulus, under four within-subjects manipulations of the quality of the visual component. The Bayesian model could not accommodate asymmetric data, was rejected by goodness-of-fit statistics for 8/16 observers, and was found to be nonidentifiable, which renders uninterpretable parameter estimates. The independent-channels model captured asymmetric data, was rejected for only 1/16 observers, and identified how sensory and decisional processes mediating asynchronous audiovisual speech perception are affected by manipulations that only alter the quality of the visual component of the speech signal. PMID:27551361

  11. Neural adaptation and behavioral measures of temporal processing and speech perception in cochlear implant recipients.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Fawen; Benson, Chelsea; Murphy, Dora; Boian, Melissa; Scott, Michael; Keith, Robert; Xiang, Jing; Abbas, Paul

    2013-01-01

    The objective was to determine if one of the neural temporal features, neural adaptation, can account for the across-subject variability in behavioral measures of temporal processing and speech perception performance in cochlear implant (CI) recipients. Neural adaptation is the phenomenon in which neural responses are the strongest at the beginning of the stimulus and decline following stimulus repetition (e.g., stimulus trains). It is unclear how this temporal property of neural responses relates to psychophysical measures of temporal processing (e.g., gap detection) or speech perception. The adaptation of the electrical compound action potential (ECAP) was obtained using 1000 pulses per second (pps) biphasic pulse trains presented directly to the electrode. The adaptation of the late auditory evoked potential (LAEP) was obtained using a sequence of 1-kHz tone bursts presented acoustically, through the cochlear implant. Behavioral temporal processing was measured using the Random Gap Detection Test at the most comfortable listening level. Consonant nucleus consonant (CNC) word and AzBio sentences were also tested. The results showed that both ECAP and LAEP display adaptive patterns, with a substantial across-subject variability in the amount of adaptation. No correlations between the amount of neural adaptation and gap detection thresholds (GDTs) or speech perception scores were found. The correlations between the degree of neural adaptation and demographic factors showed that CI users having more LAEP adaptation were likely to be those implanted at a younger age than CI users with less LAEP adaptation. The results suggested that neural adaptation, at least this feature alone, cannot account for the across-subject variability in temporal processing ability in the CI users. However, the finding that the LAEP adaptive pattern was less prominent in the CI group compared to the normal hearing group may suggest the important role of normal adaptation pattern at the

  12. Neural Adaptation and Behavioral Measures of Temporal Processing and Speech Perception in Cochlear Implant Recipients

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Fawen; Benson, Chelsea; Murphy, Dora; Boian, Melissa; Scott, Michael; Keith, Robert; Xiang, Jing; Abbas, Paul

    2013-01-01

    The objective was to determine if one of the neural temporal features, neural adaptation, can account for the across-subject variability in behavioral measures of temporal processing and speech perception performance in cochlear implant (CI) recipients. Neural adaptation is the phenomenon in which neural responses are the strongest at the beginning of the stimulus and decline following stimulus repetition (e.g., stimulus trains). It is unclear how this temporal property of neural responses relates to psychophysical measures of temporal processing (e.g., gap detection) or speech perception. The adaptation of the electrical compound action potential (ECAP) was obtained using 1000 pulses per second (pps) biphasic pulse trains presented directly to the electrode. The adaptation of the late auditory evoked potential (LAEP) was obtained using a sequence of 1-kHz tone bursts presented acoustically, through the cochlear implant. Behavioral temporal processing was measured using the Random Gap Detection Test at the most comfortable listening level. Consonant nucleus consonant (CNC) word and AzBio sentences were also tested. The results showed that both ECAP and LAEP display adaptive patterns, with a substantial across-subject variability in the amount of adaptation. No correlations between the amount of neural adaptation and gap detection thresholds (GDTs) or speech perception scores were found. The correlations between the degree of neural adaptation and demographic factors showed that CI users having more LAEP adaptation were likely to be those implanted at a younger age than CI users with less LAEP adaptation. The results suggested that neural adaptation, at least this feature alone, cannot account for the across-subject variability in temporal processing ability in the CI users. However, the finding that the LAEP adaptive pattern was less prominent in the CI group compared to the normal hearing group may suggest the important role of normal adaptation pattern at the

  13. Electrophysiological measures of attention during speech perception predict metalinguistic skills in children.

    PubMed

    Astheimer, Lori; Janus, Monika; Moreno, Sylvain; Bialystok, Ellen

    2014-01-01

    Event-related potential (ERP) evidence demonstrates that preschool-aged children selectively attend to informative moments such as word onsets during speech perception. Although this observation indicates a role for attention in language processing, it is unclear whether this type of attention is part of basic speech perception mechanisms, higher-level language skills, or general cognitive abilities. The current study examined these possibilities by measuring ERPs from 5-year-old children listening to a narrative containing attention probes presented before, during, and after word onsets as well as at random control times. Children also completed behavioral tests assessing verbal and nonverbal skills. Probes presented after word onsets elicited a more negative ERP response beginning around 100 ms after probe onset than control probes, indicating increased attention to word-initial segments. Crucially, the magnitude of this difference was correlated with performance on verbal tasks, but showed no relationship to nonverbal measures. More specifically, ERP attention effects were most strongly correlated with performance on a complex metalinguistic task involving grammaticality judgments. These results demonstrate that effective allocation of attention during speech perception supports higher-level, controlled language processing in children by allowing them to focus on relevant information at individual word and complex sentence levels.

  14. Modelling relations between sensory processing, speech perception, orthographic and phonological ability, and literacy achievement.

    PubMed

    Boets, Bart; Wouters, Jan; van Wieringen, Astrid; De Smedt, Bert; Ghesquière, Pol

    2008-07-01

    The general magnocellular theory postulates that dyslexia is the consequence of a multimodal deficit in the processing of transient and dynamic stimuli. In the auditory modality, this deficit has been hypothesized to interfere with accurate speech perception, and subsequently disrupt the development of phonological and later reading and spelling skills. In the visual modality, an analogous problem might interfere with literacy development by affecting orthographic skills. In this prospective longitudinal study, we tested dynamic auditory and visual processing, speech-in-noise perception, phonological ability and orthographic ability in 62 five-year-old preschool children. Predictive relations towards first grade reading and spelling measures were explored and the validity of the global magnocellular model was evaluated using causal path analysis. In particular, we demonstrated that dynamic auditory processing was related to speech perception, which itself was related to phonological awareness. Similarly, dynamic visual processing was related to orthographic ability. Subsequently, phonological awareness, orthographic ability and verbal short-term memory were unique predictors of reading and spelling development. PMID:18207564

  15. Frame rate of motion picture and its influence on speech perception

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakazono, Kaoru

    1996-03-01

    The preservation of QoS for multimedia traffic through a data network is a difficult problem. We focus our attention on video frame rate and study its influence on speech perception. When sound and picture are discrepant (e.g., acoustic `ba' combined with visual `ga'), subjects perceive a different sound (such as `da'). This phenomenon is known as the McGurk effect. In this paper, the influence of degraded video frame rate on speech perception was studied. It was shown that when frame rate decreases, correct hearing is improved for discrepant stimuli and is degraded for congruent (voice and picture are the same) stimuli. Furthermore, we studied the case where lip closure was always captured by the synchronization of sampling time and lip position. In this case, frame rate has little effect on mishearing for congruent stimuli. For discrepant stimuli, mishearing is decreased with degraded frame rate. These results indicate that stiff motion of lips resulting from low frame rate cannot give enough labial information for speech perception. In addition, the effect of delaying the picture to correct for low frame rate was studied. The results, however, were not as definitive as expected because of compound effects related to the synchronization of sound and picture.

  16. Reduced audiovisual integration in synesthesia--evidence from bimodal speech perception.

    PubMed

    Sinke, Christopher; Neufeld, Janina; Zedler, Markus; Emrich, Hinderk M; Bleich, Stefan; Münte, Thomas F; Szycik, Gregor R

    2014-03-01

    Recent research suggests synesthesia as a result of a hypersensitive multimodal binding mechanism. To address the question whether multimodal integration is altered in synesthetes in general, grapheme-colour and auditory-visual synesthetes were investigated using speech-related stimulation in two behavioural experiments. First, we used the McGurk illusion to test the strength and number of illusory perceptions in synesthesia. In a second step, we analysed the gain in speech perception coming from seen articulatory movements under acoustically noisy conditions. We used disyllabic nouns as stimulation and varied signal-to-noise ratio of the auditory stream presented concurrently to a matching video of the speaker. We hypothesized that if synesthesia is due to a general hyperbinding mechanism this group of subjects should be more susceptible to McGurk illusions and profit more from the visual information during audiovisual speech perception. The results indicate that there are differences between synesthetes and controls concerning multisensory integration--but in the opposite direction as hypothesized. Synesthetes showed a reduced number of illusions and had a reduced gain in comprehension by viewing matching articulatory movements in comparison to control subjects. Our results indicate that rather than having a hypersensitive binding mechanism, synesthetes show weaker integration of vision and audition.

  17. Effects of Removing Low-Frequency Electric Information on Speech Perception With Bimodal Hearing

    PubMed Central

    Eggleston, Jessica L.; Reavis, Kelly M.; McMillan, Garnett P.; Reiss, Lina A. J.

    2016-01-01

    Purpose The objective was to determine whether speech perception could be improved for bimodal listeners (those using a cochlear implant [CI] in one ear and hearing aid in the contralateral ear) by removing low-frequency information provided by the CI, thereby reducing acoustic–electric overlap. Method Subjects were adult CI subjects with at least 1 year of CI experience. Nine subjects were evaluated in the CI-only condition (control condition), and 26 subjects were evaluated in the bimodal condition. CIs were programmed with 4 experimental programs in which the low cutoff frequency (LCF) was progressively raised. Speech perception was evaluated using Consonant-Nucleus-Consonant words in quiet, AzBio sentences in background babble, and spondee words in background babble. Results The CI-only group showed decreased speech perception in both quiet and noise as the LCF was raised. Bimodal subjects with better hearing in the hearing aid ear (< 60 dB HL at 250 and 500 Hz) performed best for words in quiet as the LCF was raised. In contrast, bimodal subjects with worse hearing (> 60 dB HL at 250 and 500 Hz) performed similarly to the CI-only group. Conclusions These findings suggest that reducing low-frequency overlap of the CI and contralateral hearing aid may improve performance in quiet for some bimodal listeners with better hearing. PMID:26535803

  18. The effects of input-output configuration in syllabic compression on speech perception.

    PubMed

    Maré, M J; Dreschler, W A; Verschuure, H

    1992-06-01

    Speech perception was tested through a broad-band syllabic compressor with four different static input-output configurations. All other parameters of the compressor were held constant. The compressor was implemented digitally and incorporated a delay to reduce overshoot. We studied four different input-output configurations, including a linear reference condition. Normal-hearing and hearing-impaired subjects participated in the experiments testing perception of meaningful sentences as well as nonsense CVCs in carrier phrases. The speech materials were presented in quiet and in noise. The results from the CVCs were analyzed quantitatively in terms of scores and qualitatively in terms of phoneme confusions. Differences in speech perception due to the different input-output configurations were small. The input-output configuration with the highest amplification of low amplitude sounds yielded the best results. Detailed analysis of the results included a correlational analysis with a number of auditory functions characterizing the ears tested. The pure-tone audiogram provided parameters of auditory sensitivity: average audiometric loss and audiometric slope. Psychophysical tests provided parameters of temporal resolution and frequency selectivity: the temporal resolution factor, temporal gap detection, and auditory filter shape. The correlational analysis showed that the subjects with better temporal acuity obtained better results.

  19. Speech perception by four single-channel cochlear implant users.

    PubMed

    Dent, L J; Simmons, F B; White, R L; Roberts, L A

    1987-12-01

    Four profoundly deaf adults, each a recent recipient of a scala tympani implant, underwent auditory and auditory-visual speech comprehension evaluations. Two subjects had multiple-electrode auditory prostheses, and 2 had single-electrode implants. All subjects were tested preoperatively with a high-power hearing aid, and postoperatively with a single-channel wearable sound processor. Reported here are the results of the first formal speech recognition tests which were conducted during the 8 months after the sound processor fitting. Three subjects had used the single-channel processor on a daily basis for up to 8 months at the time of postoperative testing. The 4th subject was a nonuser. On listening tests, a comparison between pre- and post-implant scores revealed little difference for any subject. On postoperative speechreading tasks, all subjects identified medial consonant phonemes and 2-digit numerals better with stimulation than without. The 3 frequent users of the device experienced significant improvement on connected-discourse tracking, and their speechreading of videotaped and live voice CID Everyday Sentences (Davis & Silverman, 1978) was enhanced with the addition of stimulation. The nonuser was a very proficient speechreader at the outset and exhibited no significant difference on connected-discourse tracking with and without stimulation. Moreover her ability to speechread Everyday Sentences was hampered slightly by the addition of stimulation. This single-channel sound processor functioned as a sensory supplement for the 3 frequent users, but no subject was able to use the processor as a sensory substitute. PMID:3695442

  20. Echoes of the spoken past: how auditory cortex hears context during speech perception

    PubMed Central

    Skipper, Jeremy I.

    2014-01-01

    What do we hear when someone speaks and what does auditory cortex (AC) do with that sound? Given how meaningful speech is, it might be hypothesized that AC is most active when other people talk so that their productions get decoded. Here, neuroimaging meta-analyses show the opposite: AC is least active and sometimes deactivated when participants listened to meaningful speech compared to less meaningful sounds. Results are explained by an active hypothesis-and-test mechanism where speech production (SP) regions are neurally re-used to predict auditory objects associated with available context. By this model, more AC activity for less meaningful sounds occurs because predictions are less successful from context, requiring further hypotheses be tested. This also explains the large overlap of AC co-activity for less meaningful sounds with meta-analyses of SP. An experiment showed a similar pattern of results for non-verbal context. Specifically, words produced less activity in AC and SP regions when preceded by co-speech gestures that visually described those words compared to those words without gestures. Results collectively suggest that what we ‘hear’ during real-world speech perception may come more from the brain than our ears and that the function of AC is to confirm or deny internal predictions about the identity of sounds. PMID:25092665

  1. How musical expertise shapes speech perception: evidence from auditory classification images

    PubMed Central

    Varnet, Léo; Wang, Tianyun; Peter, Chloe; Meunier, Fanny; Hoen, Michel

    2015-01-01

    It is now well established that extensive musical training percolates to higher levels of cognition, such as speech processing. However, the lack of a precise technique to investigate the specific listening strategy involved in speech comprehension has made it difficult to determine how musicians’ higher performance in non-speech tasks contributes to their enhanced speech comprehension. The recently developed Auditory Classification Image approach reveals the precise time-frequency regions used by participants when performing phonemic categorizations in noise. Here we used this technique on 19 non-musicians and 19 professional musicians. We found that both groups used very similar listening strategies, but the musicians relied more heavily on the two main acoustic cues, at the first formant onset and at the onsets of the second and third formants onsets. Additionally, they responded more consistently to stimuli. These observations provide a direct visualization of auditory plasticity resulting from extensive musical training and shed light on the level of functional transfer between auditory processing and speech perception. PMID:26399909

  2. A sensitive period for shibboleths: the long tail and changing goals of speech perception over the course of development.

    PubMed

    Zevin, Jason D

    2012-09-01

    It is clear that the ability to learn new speech contrasts changes over development, such that learning to categorize speech sounds as native speakers of a language do is more difficult in adulthood than it is earlier in development. There is also a wealth of data concerning changes in the perception of speech sounds during infancy, such that infants quite rapidly progress from language-general to more language-specific perceptual biases. It is often suggested that the perceptual narrowing observed during infancy plays a causal role in the loss of plasticity observed in adulthood, but the relationship between these two phenomena is complicated. Here I consider the relationship between changes in sensitivity to speech sound categorization over the first 2 years of life, when they appear to reorganize quite rapidly, to the "long tail" of development throughout childhood, in the context of understanding the sensitive period for speech perception.

  3. Predictive top-down integration of prior knowledge during speech perception.

    PubMed

    Sohoglu, Ediz; Peelle, Jonathan E; Carlyon, Robert P; Davis, Matthew H

    2012-06-20

    A striking feature of human perception is that our subjective experience depends not only on sensory information from the environment but also on our prior knowledge or expectations. The precise mechanisms by which sensory information and prior knowledge are integrated remain unclear, with longstanding disagreement concerning whether integration is strictly feedforward or whether higher-level knowledge influences sensory processing through feedback connections. Here we used concurrent EEG and MEG recordings to determine how sensory information and prior knowledge are integrated in the brain during speech perception. We manipulated listeners' prior knowledge of speech content by presenting matching, mismatching, or neutral written text before a degraded (noise-vocoded) spoken word. When speech conformed to prior knowledge, subjective perceptual clarity was enhanced. This enhancement in clarity was associated with a spatiotemporal profile of brain activity uniquely consistent with a feedback process: activity in the inferior frontal gyrus was modulated by prior knowledge before activity in lower-level sensory regions of the superior temporal gyrus. In parallel, we parametrically varied the level of speech degradation, and therefore the amount of sensory detail, so that changes in neural responses attributable to sensory information and prior knowledge could be directly compared. Although sensory detail and prior knowledge both enhanced speech clarity, they had an opposite influence on the evoked response in the superior temporal gyrus. We argue that these data are best explained within the framework of predictive coding in which sensory activity is compared with top-down predictions and only unexplained activity propagated through the cortical hierarchy.

  4. Relative alpha desynchronization and synchronization during speech perception.

    PubMed

    Krause, C M; Pörn, B; Lang, A H; Laine, M

    1997-06-01

    Brain processes elicited by speech were studied in 10 right-handed subjects by means of examining the desynchronization and synchronization of the 8-10 Hz and 10-12 Hz EEG alpha frequency bands. The subjects listened to an auditorily presented 5 min text passage. The text was presented both forward and backward. Listening to the text forward elicited alpha desynchronization in both of the frequency bands studied, whereas listening to the same text presented backward elicited synchronization in the 10-12 Hz frequency band only. Listening to the text forward elicited greater desynchronization than listening to the text backward. In the 10-12 Hz frequency band, listening to the text forward elicited desynchronization whereas listening to the same text backward elicited synchronization. This dissociation was not observed in the 8-10 Hz frequency band. The results suggest that the lower and upper alpha bands differ such that the 10-12 Hz frequency band exhibits reactivity to the presence of linguistic content while the 8-10 Hz band shows an unspecific response.

  5. Auditory discontinuities interact with categorization: Implications for speech perception

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holt, Lori L.; Lotto, Andrew J.; Diehl, Randy L.

    2004-09-01

    Behavioral experiments with infants, adults, and nonhuman animals converge with neurophysiological findings to suggest that there is a discontinuity in auditory processing of stimulus components differing in onset time by about 20 ms. This discontinuity has been implicated as a basis for boundaries between speech categories distinguished by voice onset time (VOT). Here, it is investigated how this discontinuity interacts with the learning of novel perceptual categories. Adult listeners were trained to categorize nonspeech stimuli that mimicked certain temporal properties of VOT stimuli. One group of listeners learned categories with a boundary coincident with the perceptual discontinuity. Another group learned categories defined such that the perceptual discontinuity fell within a category. Listeners in the latter group required significantly more experience to reach criterion categorization performance. Evidence of interactions between the perceptual discontinuity and the learned categories extended to generalization tests as well. It has been hypothesized that languages make use of perceptual discontinuities to promote distinctiveness among sounds within a language inventory. The present data suggest that discontinuities interact with category learning. As such, ``learnability'' may play a predictive role in selection of language sound inventories.

  6. The grain size of auditory mismatch response in speech perception

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Yang; Kuhl, Patricia; Imada, Toshiaki; Imada, Toshiaki; Kotani, Makoto

    2005-09-01

    This phonetic study examined neural encoding of within-and cross- category information as a function of language experience. Behavioral and magnetoencephalography (MEG) measures for synthetic /ba-wa/ and /ra-la/ stimuli were obtained from ten American and ten Japanese subjects. The MEG experiments employed the oddball paradigm in two conditions. One condition used single exemplars to represent the phonetic categories, and the other introduced within-category variations for both the standard and deviant stimuli. Behavioral results showed three major findings: (a) a robust phonetic boundary effect was observed only in the native listeners; (b) all listeners were able to detect within-category differences on an acoustic basis; and (c) both within- and cross- category discriminations were strongly influenced by language experience. Consistent with behavioral findings, American listeners had larger mismatch field (MMF) responses for /ra-la/ in both conditions but not for /ba-wa/ in either. Moreover, American listeners showed a significant MMF reduction in encoding within-category variations for /ba-wa/ but not for /ra-la/, and Japanese listeners had MMF reductions for both. These results strongly suggest that the grain size of auditory mismatch response is determined not only by experience-dependent phonetic knowledge, but also by the specific characteristics of speech stimuli. [Work supported by NIH.

  7. No Lexical-Prelexical Feedback during Speech Perception or: Is It Time to Stop Playing Those Christmas Tapes?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McQueen, James M.; Jesse, Alexandra; Norris, Dennis

    2009-01-01

    The strongest support for feedback in speech perception comes from evidence of apparent lexical influence on prelexical fricative-stop compensation for coarticulation. Lexical knowledge (e.g., that the ambiguous final fricative of "Christma?" should be [s]) apparently influences perception of following stops. We argue that all such previous…

  8. Auditory Perceptual Learning for Speech Perception Can be Enhanced by Audiovisual Training

    PubMed Central

    Bernstein, Lynne E.; Auer, Edward T.; Eberhardt, Silvio P.; Jiang, Jintao

    2013-01-01

    Speech perception under audiovisual (AV) conditions is well known to confer benefits to perception such as increased speed and accuracy. Here, we investigated how AV training might benefit or impede auditory perceptual learning of speech degraded by vocoding. In Experiments 1 and 3, participants learned paired associations between vocoded spoken nonsense words and nonsense pictures. In Experiment 1, paired-associates (PA) AV training of one group of participants was compared with audio-only (AO) training of another group. When tested under AO conditions, the AV-trained group was significantly more accurate than the AO-trained group. In addition, pre- and post-training AO forced-choice consonant identification with untrained nonsense words showed that AV-trained participants had learned significantly more than AO participants. The pattern of results pointed to their having learned at the level of the auditory phonetic features of the vocoded stimuli. Experiment 2, a no-training control with testing and re-testing on the AO consonant identification, showed that the controls were as accurate as the AO-trained participants in Experiment 1 but less accurate than the AV-trained participants. In Experiment 3, PA training alternated AV and AO conditions on a list-by-list basis within participants, and training was to criterion (92% correct). PA training with AO stimuli was reliably more effective than training with AV stimuli. We explain these discrepant results in terms of the so-called “reverse hierarchy theory” of perceptual learning and in terms of the diverse multisensory and unisensory processing resources available to speech perception. We propose that early AV speech integration can potentially impede auditory perceptual learning; but visual top-down access to relevant auditory features can promote auditory perceptual learning. PMID:23515520

  9. The separation between music and speech: evidence from the perception of Cantonese tones.

    PubMed

    Mok, P K Peggy; Zuo, Donghui

    2012-10-01

    This study investigates the relationship between music and speech, testing whether musical training has any facilitatory effects on native tone language speakers. Some Cantonese tone pairs are merging in recent years. The merging subjects have poorer general lexical tone perception than the control subjects. Previous studies showed that musical training facilitates lexical tone perception of nontone language speakers, but it is unclear if the same is true for tone language speakers. Three groups of listeners (standard Cantonese, merging Cantonese, nontone) with and without musical training participated in AX discrimination tasks of Cantonese monosyllables and pure tones resynthesized from Cantonese lexical tones. Results show that while musical training enhances lexical tone perception of nontone listeners, it has little influence on Cantonese listeners. The findings suggest that the linguistic use of tones is more fundamental and more robust than musical tones. Our results are compatible with the idea that linguistic and musical mechanisms belong to separate but overlapping domains. PMID:23039463

  10. Conditioned allophony in speech perception: an ERP study.

    PubMed

    Miglietta, Sandra; Grimaldi, Mirko; Calabrese, Andrea

    2013-09-01

    A Mismatch Negativity (MMN) study was performed to investigate whether pre-attentive vowel perception is influenced by phonological status. We compared the MMN response to the acoustic distinction between the allophonic variation [ε-e] and phonemic contrast [e-i] present in a Southern-Italian variety (Tricase dialect). Clear MMNs were elicited for both the phonemic and allophonic conditions. Interestingly, a shorter latency was observed for the phonemic pair, but no significant amplitude difference was observed between the two conditions. Together, these results suggest that for isolated vowels, the phonological status of a vowel category is reflected in the latency of the MMN peak. The earlier latency of the phonemic condition argues for an easier parsing and encoding of phonemic contrasts in memory representations. Thus, neural computations mapping auditory inputs into higher perceptual representations seem 'sensitive' to the contrastive/non-contrastive status of the sounds as determined by the listeners' knowledge of the own phonological system.

  11. The relationship between the neural computations for speech and music perception is context-dependent: an activation likelihood estimate study.

    PubMed

    LaCroix, Arianna N; Diaz, Alvaro F; Rogalsky, Corianne

    2015-01-01

    The relationship between the neurobiology of speech and music has been investigated for more than a century. There remains no widespread agreement regarding how (or to what extent) music perception utilizes the neural circuitry that is engaged in speech processing, particularly at the cortical level. Prominent models such as Patel's Shared Syntactic Integration Resource Hypothesis (SSIRH) and Koelsch's neurocognitive model of music perception suggest a high degree of overlap, particularly in the frontal lobe, but also perhaps more distinct representations in the temporal lobe with hemispheric asymmetries. The present meta-analysis study used activation likelihood estimate analyses to identify the brain regions consistently activated for music as compared to speech across the functional neuroimaging (fMRI and PET) literature. Eighty music and 91 speech neuroimaging studies of healthy adult control subjects were analyzed. Peak activations reported in the music and speech studies were divided into four paradigm categories: passive listening, discrimination tasks, error/anomaly detection tasks and memory-related tasks. We then compared activation likelihood estimates within each category for music vs. speech, and each music condition with passive listening. We found that listening to music and to speech preferentially activate distinct temporo-parietal bilateral cortical networks. We also found music and speech to have shared resources in the left pars opercularis but speech-specific resources in the left pars triangularis. The extent to which music recruited speech-activated frontal resources was modulated by task. While there are certainly limitations to meta-analysis techniques particularly regarding sensitivity, this work suggests that the extent of shared resources between speech and music may be task-dependent and highlights the need to consider how task effects may be affecting conclusions regarding the neurobiology of speech and music. PMID:26321976

  12. The relationship between the neural computations for speech and music perception is context-dependent: an activation likelihood estimate study

    PubMed Central

    LaCroix, Arianna N.; Diaz, Alvaro F.; Rogalsky, Corianne

    2015-01-01

    The relationship between the neurobiology of speech and music has been investigated for more than a century. There remains no widespread agreement regarding how (or to what extent) music perception utilizes the neural circuitry that is engaged in speech processing, particularly at the cortical level. Prominent models such as Patel's Shared Syntactic Integration Resource Hypothesis (SSIRH) and Koelsch's neurocognitive model of music perception suggest a high degree of overlap, particularly in the frontal lobe, but also perhaps more distinct representations in the temporal lobe with hemispheric asymmetries. The present meta-analysis study used activation likelihood estimate analyses to identify the brain regions consistently activated for music as compared to speech across the functional neuroimaging (fMRI and PET) literature. Eighty music and 91 speech neuroimaging studies of healthy adult control subjects were analyzed. Peak activations reported in the music and speech studies were divided into four paradigm categories: passive listening, discrimination tasks, error/anomaly detection tasks and memory-related tasks. We then compared activation likelihood estimates within each category for music vs. speech, and each music condition with passive listening. We found that listening to music and to speech preferentially activate distinct temporo-parietal bilateral cortical networks. We also found music and speech to have shared resources in the left pars opercularis but speech-specific resources in the left pars triangularis. The extent to which music recruited speech-activated frontal resources was modulated by task. While there are certainly limitations to meta-analysis techniques particularly regarding sensitivity, this work suggests that the extent of shared resources between speech and music may be task-dependent and highlights the need to consider how task effects may be affecting conclusions regarding the neurobiology of speech and music. PMID:26321976

  13. Use of Audiovisual Information in Speech Perception by Prelingually Deaf Children with Cochlear Implants: A First Report

    PubMed Central

    Lachs, Lorin; Pisoni, David B.; Kirk, Karen Iler

    2012-01-01

    Objective Although there has been a great deal of recent empirical work and new theoretical interest in audiovisual speech perception in both normal-hearing and hearing-impaired adults, relatively little is known about the development of these abilities and skills in deaf children with cochlear implants. This study examined how prelingually deafened children combine visual information available in the talker’s face with auditory speech cues provided by their cochlear implants to enhance spoken language comprehension. Design Twenty-seven hearing-impaired children who use cochlear implants identified spoken sentences presented under auditory-alone and audiovisual conditions. Five additional measures of spoken word recognition performance were used to assess auditory-alone speech perception skills. A measure of speech intelligibility was also obtained to assess the speech production abilities of these children. Results A measure of audiovisual gain, “Ra,” was computed using sentence recognition scores in auditory-alone and audiovisual conditions. Another measure of audiovisual gain, “Rv,” was computed using scores in visual-alone and audiovisual conditions. The results indicated that children who were better at recognizing isolated spoken words through listening alone were also better at combining the complementary sensory information about speech articulation available under audiovisual stimulation. In addition, we found that children who received more benefit from audiovisual presentation also produced more intelligible speech, suggesting a close link between speech perception and production and a common underlying linguistic basis for audiovisual enhancement effects. Finally, an examination of the distribution of children enrolled in Oral Communication (OC) and Total Communication (TC) indicated that OC children tended to score higher on measures of audiovisual gain, spoken word recognition, and speech intelligibility. Conclusions The relationships

  14. The socially weighted encoding of spoken words: a dual-route approach to speech perception

    PubMed Central

    Sumner, Meghan; Kim, Seung Kyung; King, Ed; McGowan, Kevin B.

    2014-01-01

    Spoken words are highly variable. A single word may never be uttered the same way twice. As listeners, we regularly encounter speakers of different ages, genders, and accents, increasing the amount of variation we face. How listeners understand spoken words as quickly and adeptly as they do despite this variation remains an issue central to linguistic theory. We propose that learned acoustic patterns are mapped simultaneously to linguistic representations and to social representations. In doing so, we illuminate a paradox that results in the literature from, we argue, the focus on representations and the peripheral treatment of word-level phonetic variation. We consider phonetic variation more fully and highlight a growing body of work that is problematic for current theory: words with different pronunciation variants are recognized equally well in immediate processing tasks, while an atypical, infrequent, but socially idealized form is remembered better in the long-term. We suggest that the perception of spoken words is socially weighted, resulting in sparse, but high-resolution clusters of socially idealized episodes that are robust in immediate processing and are more strongly encoded, predicting memory inequality. Our proposal includes a dual-route approach to speech perception in which listeners map acoustic patterns in speech to linguistic and social representations in tandem. This approach makes novel predictions about the extraction of information from the speech signal, and provides a framework with which we can ask new questions. We propose that language comprehension, broadly, results from the integration of both linguistic and social information. PMID:24550851

  15. Rural speech-language pathologists' perceptions of working with allied health assistants.

    PubMed

    O'Brien, Rachael; Byrne, Nicole; Mitchell, Rebecca; Ferguson, Alison

    2013-12-01

    Workforce shortages are forecast for speech-language pathology in Australia, and will have a more significant impact on rural and remote areas than on metropolitan areas. Allied health (AH) disciplines such as physiotherapy and occupational therapy address the problem of workforce shortages and growing clinical demand by employing allied health assistants (AHAs) to provide clinical and administrative support to AH professionals. Currently, speech-language pathologists (SLPs) don't work with discipline-specific allied health assistants in all states of Australia (e.g., New South Wales). This paper aims to provide insight into the perceptions of SLPs in one Australian state (NSW) regarding working with AHAs. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with eight rural SLPs. Qualitative analysis indicated that participants perceived they had deficits in skills and knowledge required to work with AHAs and identified further training needs. Participants perceived the SLP role to be misunderstood and were concerned about poor consultation regarding the introduction of AHAs into the profession. Ambivalence was evident in overall perceptions of working with AHAs, and tasks performed. While previous research identified benefits of working with AHAs, results from this study suggest that significant professional, economic, and organizational issues need addressing before such a change should be implemented in speech-language pathology.

  16. Talker-specific learning in amnesia: Insight into mechanisms of adaptive speech perception.

    PubMed

    Trude, Alison M; Duff, Melissa C; Brown-Schmidt, Sarah

    2014-05-01

    A hallmark of human speech perception is the ability to comprehend speech quickly and effortlessly despite enormous variability across talkers. However, current theories of speech perception do not make specific claims about the memory mechanisms involved in this process. To examine whether declarative memory is necessary for talker-specific learning, we tested the ability of amnesic patients with severe declarative memory deficits to learn and distinguish the accents of two unfamiliar talkers by monitoring their eye-gaze as they followed spoken instructions. Analyses of the time-course of eye fixations showed that amnesic patients rapidly learned to distinguish these accents and tailored perceptual processes to the voice of each talker. These results demonstrate that declarative memory is not necessary for this ability and points to the involvement of non-declarative memory mechanisms. These results are consistent with findings that other social and accommodative behaviors are preserved in amnesia and contribute to our understanding of the interactions of multiple memory systems in the use and understanding of spoken language.

  17. A positron emission tomography study of the neural basis of informational and energetic masking effects in speech perception.

    PubMed

    Scott, Sophie K; Rosen, Stuart; Wickham, Lindsay; Wise, Richard J S

    2004-02-01

    Positron emission tomography (PET) was used to investigate the neural basis of the comprehension of speech in unmodulated noise ("energetic" masking, dominated by effects at the auditory periphery), and when presented with another speaker ("informational" masking, dominated by more central effects). Each type of signal was presented at four different signal-to-noise ratios (SNRs) (+3, 0, -3, -6 dB for the speech-in-speech, +6, +3, 0, -3 dB for the speech-in-noise), with listeners instructed to listen for meaning to the target speaker. Consistent with behavioral studies, there was SNR-dependent activation associated with the comprehension of speech in noise, with no SNR-dependent activity for the comprehension of speech-in-speech (at low or negative SNRs). There was, in addition, activation in bilateral superior temporal gyri which was associated with the informational masking condition. The extent to which this activation of classical "speech" areas of the temporal lobes might delineate the neural basis of the informational masking is considered, as is the relationship of these findings to the interfering effects of unattended speech and sound on more explicit working memory tasks. This study is a novel demonstration of candidate neural systems involved in the perception of speech in noisy environments, and of the processing of multiple speakers in the dorso-lateral temporal lobes. PMID:15000192

  18. A positron emission tomography study of the neural basis of informational and energetic masking effects in speech perception

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scott, Sophie K.; Rosen, Stuart; Wickham, Lindsay; Wise, Richard J. S.

    2004-02-01

    Positron emission tomography (PET) was used to investigate the neural basis of the comprehension of speech in unmodulated noise (``energetic'' masking, dominated by effects at the auditory periphery), and when presented with another speaker (``informational'' masking, dominated by more central effects). Each type of signal was presented at four different signal-to-noise ratios (SNRs) (+3, 0, -3, -6 dB for the speech-in-speech, +6, +3, 0, -3 dB for the speech-in-noise), with listeners instructed to listen for meaning to the target speaker. Consistent with behavioral studies, there was SNR-dependent activation associated with the comprehension of speech in noise, with no SNR-dependent activity for the comprehension of speech-in-speech (at low or negative SNRs). There was, in addition, activation in bilateral superior temporal gyri which was associated with the informational masking condition. The extent to which this activation of classical ``speech'' areas of the temporal lobes might delineate the neural basis of the informational masking is considered, as is the relationship of these findings to the interfering effects of unattended speech and sound on more explicit working memory tasks. This study is a novel demonstration of candidate neural systems involved in the perception of speech in noisy environments, and of the processing of multiple speakers in the dorso-lateral temporal lobes.

  19. Fundamental frequency is critical to speech perception in noise in combined acoustic and electric hearinga

    PubMed Central

    Carroll, Jeff; Tiaden, Stephanie; Zeng, Fan-Gang

    2011-01-01

    Cochlear implant (CI) users have been shown to benefit from residual low-frequency hearing, specifically in pitch related tasks. It remains unclear whether this benefit is dependent on fundamental frequency (F0) or other acoustic cues. Three experiments were conducted to determine the role of F0, as well as its frequency modulated (FM) and amplitude modulated (AM) components, in speech recognition with a competing voice. In simulated CI listeners, the signal-to-noise ratio was varied to estimate the 50% correct response. Simulation results showed that the F0 cue contributes to a significant proportion of the benefit seen with combined acoustic and electric hearing, and additionally that this benefit is due to the FM rather than the AM component. In actual CI users, sentence recognition scores were collected with either the full F0 cue containing both the FM and AM components or the 500-Hz low-pass speech cue containing the F0 and additional harmonics. The F0 cue provided a benefit similar to the low-pass cue for speech in noise, but not in quiet. Poorer CI users benefited more from the F0 cue than better users. These findings suggest that F0 is critical to improving speech perception in noise in combined acoustic and electric hearing. PMID:21973360

  20. Improved perception of speech in noise and Mandarin tones with acoustic simulations of harmonic coding for cochlear implants.

    PubMed

    Li, Xing; Nie, Kaibao; Imennov, Nikita S; Won, Jong Ho; Drennan, Ward R; Rubinstein, Jay T; Atlas, Les E

    2012-11-01

    Harmonic and temporal fine structure (TFS) information are important cues for speech perception in noise and music perception. However, due to the inherently coarse spectral and temporal resolution in electric hearing, the question of how to deliver harmonic and TFS information to cochlear implant (CI) users remains unresolved. A harmonic-single-sideband-encoder [(HSSE); Nie et al. (2008). Proceedings of IEEE International Conference on Acoustics, Speech, and Signal Processing; Lie et al., (2010). Proceedings of IEEE International Conference on Acoustics, Speech, and Signal Processing] strategy has been proposed that explicitly tracks the harmonics in speech and transforms them into modulators conveying both amplitude modulation and fundamental frequency information. For unvoiced speech, HSSE transforms the TFS into a slowly varying yet still noise-like signal. To investigate its potential, four- and eight-channel vocoder simulations of HSSE and the continuous-interleaved-sampling (CIS) strategy were implemented, respectively. Using these vocoders, five normal-hearing subjects' speech recognition performance was evaluated under different masking conditions; another five normal-hearing subjects' Mandarin tone identification performance was also evaluated. Additionally, the neural discharge patterns evoked by HSSE- and CIS-encoded Mandarin tone stimuli were simulated using an auditory nerve model. All subjects scored significantly higher with HSSE than with CIS vocoders. The modeling analysis demonstrated that HSSE can convey temporal pitch cues better than CIS. Overall, the results suggest that HSSE is a promising strategy to enhance speech perception with CIs. PMID:23145619

  1. Laminar cortical dynamics of conscious speech perception: neural model of phonemic restoration using subsequent context in noise.

    PubMed

    Grossberg, Stephen; Kazerounian, Sohrob

    2011-07-01

    How are laminar circuits of neocortex organized to generate conscious speech and language percepts? How does the brain restore information that is occluded by noise, or absent from an acoustic signal, by integrating contextual information over many milliseconds to disambiguate noise-occluded acoustical signals? How are speech and language heard in the correct temporal order, despite the influence of contexts that may occur many milliseconds before or after each perceived word? A neural model describes key mechanisms in forming conscious speech percepts, and quantitatively simulates a critical example of contextual disambiguation of speech and language; namely, phonemic restoration. Here, a phoneme deleted from a speech stream is perceptually restored when it is replaced by broadband noise, even when the disambiguating context occurs after the phoneme was presented. The model describes how the laminar circuits within a hierarchy of cortical processing stages may interact to generate a conscious speech percept that is embodied by a resonant wave of activation that occurs between acoustic features, acoustic item chunks, and list chunks. Chunk-mediated gating allows speech to be heard in the correct temporal order, even when what is heard depends upon future context.

  2. Relationships Among Peripheral and Central Electrophysiological Measures of Spatial and Spectral Selectivity and Speech Perception in Cochlear Implant Users

    PubMed Central

    Scheperle, Rachel A.; Abbas, Paul J.

    2014-01-01

    Objectives The ability to perceive speech is related to the listener’s ability to differentiate among frequencies (i.e., spectral resolution). Cochlear implant (CI) users exhibit variable speech-perception and spectral-resolution abilities, which can be attributed in part to the extent of electrode interactions at the periphery (i.e., spatial selectivity). However, electrophysiological measures of peripheral spatial selectivity have not been found to correlate with speech perception. The purpose of this study was to evaluate auditory processing at the periphery and cortex using both simple and spectrally complex stimuli to better understand the stages of neural processing underlying speech perception. The hypotheses were that (1) by more completely characterizing peripheral excitation patterns than in previous studies, significant correlations with measures of spectral selectivity and speech perception would be observed, (2) adding information about processing at a level central to the auditory nerve would account for additional variability in speech perception, and (3) responses elicited with spectrally complex stimuli would be more strongly correlated with speech perception than responses elicited with spectrally simple stimuli. Design Eleven adult CI users participated. Three experimental processor programs (MAPs) were created to vary the likelihood of electrode interactions within each participant. For each MAP, a subset of 7 of 22 intracochlear electrodes was activated: adjacent (MAP 1), every-other (MAP 2), or every third (MAP 3). Peripheral spatial selectivity was assessed using the electrically evoked compound action potential (ECAP) to obtain channel-interaction functions for all activated electrodes (13 functions total). Central processing was assessed by eliciting the auditory change complex (ACC) with both spatial (electrode pairs) and spectral (rippled noise) stimulus changes. Speech-perception measures included vowel-discrimination and the Bamford

  3. Bayesian model of categorical effects in L1 and L2 speech perception

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kronrod, Yakov

    In this dissertation I present a model that captures categorical effects in both first language (L1) and second language (L2) speech perception. In L1 perception, categorical effects range between extremely strong for consonants to nearly continuous perception of vowels. I treat the problem of speech perception as a statistical inference problem and by quantifying categoricity I obtain a unified model of both strong and weak categorical effects. In this optimal inference mechanism, the listener uses their knowledge of categories and the acoustics of the signal to infer the intended productions of the speaker. The model splits up speech variability into meaningful category variance and perceptual noise variance. The ratio of these two variances, which I call Tau, directly correlates with the degree of categorical effects for a given phoneme or continuum. By fitting the model to behavioral data from different phonemes, I show how a single parametric quantitative variation can lead to the different degrees of categorical effects seen in perception experiments with different phonemes. In L2 perception, L1 categories have been shown to exert an effect on how L2 sounds are identified and how well the listener is able to discriminate them. Various models have been developed to relate the state of L1 categories with both the initial and eventual ability to process the L2. These models largely lacked a formalized metric to measure perceptual distance, a means of making a-priori predictions of behavior for a new contrast, and a way of describing non-discrete gradient effects. In the second part of my dissertation, I apply the same computational model that I used to unify L1 categorical effects to examining L2 perception. I show that we can use the model to make the same type of predictions as other SLA models, but also provide a quantitative framework while formalizing all measures of similarity and bias. Further, I show how using this model to consider L2 learners at

  4. Speech monitoring and phonologically-mediated eye gaze in language perception and production: a comparison using printed word eye-tracking

    PubMed Central

    Gauvin, Hanna S.; Hartsuiker, Robert J.; Huettig, Falk

    2013-01-01

    The Perceptual Loop Theory of speech monitoring assumes that speakers routinely inspect their inner speech. In contrast, Huettig and Hartsuiker (2010) observed that listening to one's own speech during language production drives eye-movements to phonologically related printed words with a similar time-course as listening to someone else's speech does in speech perception experiments. This suggests that speakers use their speech perception system to listen to their own overt speech, but not to their inner speech. However, a direct comparison between production and perception with the same stimuli and participants is lacking so far. The current printed word eye-tracking experiment therefore used a within-subjects design, combining production and perception. Displays showed four words, of which one, the target, either had to be named or was presented auditorily. Accompanying words were phonologically related, semantically related, or unrelated to the target. There were small increases in looks to phonological competitors with a similar time-course in both production and perception. Phonological effects in perception however lasted longer and had a much larger magnitude. We conjecture that this difference is related to a difference in predictability of one's own and someone else's speech, which in turn has consequences for lexical competition in other-perception and possibly suppression of activation in self-perception. PMID:24339809

  5. Promising Practices in E-Supervision: Exploring Graduate Speech-Language Pathology Interns’ Perceptions

    PubMed Central

    Carlin, Charles H.; Milam, Jennifer L.; Carlin, Emily L.; Owen, Ashley

    2012-01-01

    E-supervision has a potential role in addressing speech-language personnel shortages in rural and difficult to staff school districts. The purposes of this article are twofold: to determine how e-supervision might support graduate speech-language pathologist (SLP) interns placed in rural, remote, and difficult to staff public school districts; and, to investigate interns’ perceptions of in-person supervision compared to e-supervision. The study used a mixed methodology approach and collected data from surveys, supervision documents and records, and interviews. The results showed the use of e-supervision allowed graduate SLP interns to be adequately supervised across a variety of clients and professional activities in a manner that was similar to in-person supervision. Further, e-supervision was perceived as a more convenient and less stressful supervision format when compared to in-person supervision. Other findings are discussed and implications and limitations provided. PMID:25945201

  6. The development of voicing categories: a quantitative review of over 40 years of infant speech perception research.

    PubMed

    Galle, Marcus E; McMurray, Bob

    2014-08-01

    Most research on infant speech categories has relied on measures of discrimination. Such work often employs categorical perception as a linking hypothesis to enable inferences about categorization on the basis of discrimination measures. However, a large number of studies with adults challenge the utility of categorical perception in describing adult speech perception, and this in turn calls into question how to interpret measures of infant speech discrimination. We propose here a parallel channels model of discrimination (built on Pisoni and Tash Perception & Psychophysics, 15(2), 285-290, 1974), which posits that both a noncategorical or veridical encoding of speech cues and category representations can simultaneously contribute to discrimination. This can thus produce categorical perception effects without positing any warping of the acoustic signal, but it also reframes how we think about infant discrimination and development. We test this model by conducting a quantitative review of 20 studies examining infants' discrimination of voice onset time contrasts. This review suggests that within-category discrimination is surprisingly prevalent even in classic studies and that, averaging across studies, discrimination is related to continuous acoustic distance. It also identifies several methodological factors that may mask our ability to see this. Finally, it suggests that infant discrimination may improve over development, contrary to commonly held notion of perceptual narrowing. These results are discussed in terms of theories of speech development that may require such continuous sensitivity.

  7. Communication in a noisy environment: Perception of one's own voice and speech enhancement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Le Cocq, Cecile

    Workers in noisy industrial environments are often confronted to communication problems. Lost of workers complain about not being able to communicate easily with their coworkers when they wear hearing protectors. In consequence, they tend to remove their protectors, which expose them to the risk of hearing loss. In fact this communication problem is a double one: first the hearing protectors modify one's own voice perception; second they interfere with understanding speech from others. This double problem is examined in this thesis. When wearing hearing protectors, the modification of one's own voice perception is partly due to the occlusion effect which is produced when an earplug is inserted in the car canal. This occlusion effect has two main consequences: first the physiological noises in low frequencies are better perceived, second the perception of one's own voice is modified. In order to have a better understanding of this phenomenon, the literature results are analyzed systematically, and a new method to quantify the occlusion effect is developed. Instead of stimulating the skull with a bone vibrator or asking the subject to speak as is usually done in the literature, it has been decided to excite the buccal cavity with an acoustic wave. The experiment has been designed in such a way that the acoustic wave which excites the buccal cavity does not excite the external car or the rest of the body directly. The measurement of the hearing threshold in open and occluded car has been used to quantify the subjective occlusion effect for an acoustic wave in the buccal cavity. These experimental results as well as those reported in the literature have lead to a better understanding of the occlusion effect and an evaluation of the role of each internal path from the acoustic source to the internal car. The speech intelligibility from others is altered by both the high sound levels of noisy industrial environments and the speech signal attenuation due to hearing

  8. Speech perception and reading: two parallel modes of understanding language and implications for acquiring literacy naturally.

    PubMed

    Massaro, Dominic W

    2012-01-01

    I review 2 seminal research reports published in this journal during its second decade more than a century ago. Given psychology's subdisciplines, they would not normally be reviewed together because one involves reading and the other speech perception. The small amount of interaction between these domains might have limited research and theoretical progress. In fact, the 2 early research reports revealed common processes involved in these 2 forms of language processing. Their illustration of the role of Wundt's apperceptive process in reading and speech perception anticipated descriptions of contemporary theories of pattern recognition, such as the fuzzy logical model of perception. Based on the commonalities between reading and listening, one can question why they have been viewed so differently. It is commonly believed that learning to read requires formal instruction and schooling, whereas spoken language is acquired from birth onward through natural interactions with people who talk. Most researchers and educators believe that spoken language is acquired naturally from birth onward and even prenatally. Learning to read, on the other hand, is not possible until the child has acquired spoken language, reaches school age, and receives formal instruction. If an appropriate form of written text is made available early in a child's life, however, the current hypothesis is that reading will also be learned inductively and emerge naturally, with no significant negative consequences. If this proposal is true, it should soon be possible to create an interactive system, Technology Assisted Reading Acquisition, to allow children to acquire literacy naturally. PMID:22953690

  9. On the role of phonetic inventory in the perception of foreign-accented speech

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sereno, Joan; McCall, Joyce; Jongman, Allard; Dijkstra, Ton; van Heuven, Walter

    2002-05-01

    The current study investigates the effect of phonetic inventory on perception of foreign-accented speech. The perception of native English speech was compared to the perception of foreign-accented English (Dutch-accented English), with selection of stimuli determined on the basis of phonetic inventory. Half of the stimuli contained phonemes that are unique to English and do not occur in Dutch (e.g., [θ] and [æ]), and the other half contained only phonemes that are similar in both English and Dutch (e.g., [s], [i]). Both word and nonword stimuli were included to investigate the role of lexical status. A native speaker of English and a native speaker of Dutch recorded all stimuli. Stimuli were then presented to 40 American listeners using a randomized blocked design in a lexical decision experiment. Results reveal an interaction between speaker (native English versus native Dutch) and phonetic inventory (unique versus common phonemes). Specifically, Dutch-accented stimuli with common phonemes were recognized faster and more accurately than Dutch-accented stimuli with unique phonemes. Results will be discussed in terms of the influence of foreign accent on word recognition processes.

  10. Speech perception and reading: two parallel modes of understanding language and implications for acquiring literacy naturally.

    PubMed

    Massaro, Dominic W

    2012-01-01

    I review 2 seminal research reports published in this journal during its second decade more than a century ago. Given psychology's subdisciplines, they would not normally be reviewed together because one involves reading and the other speech perception. The small amount of interaction between these domains might have limited research and theoretical progress. In fact, the 2 early research reports revealed common processes involved in these 2 forms of language processing. Their illustration of the role of Wundt's apperceptive process in reading and speech perception anticipated descriptions of contemporary theories of pattern recognition, such as the fuzzy logical model of perception. Based on the commonalities between reading and listening, one can question why they have been viewed so differently. It is commonly believed that learning to read requires formal instruction and schooling, whereas spoken language is acquired from birth onward through natural interactions with people who talk. Most researchers and educators believe that spoken language is acquired naturally from birth onward and even prenatally. Learning to read, on the other hand, is not possible until the child has acquired spoken language, reaches school age, and receives formal instruction. If an appropriate form of written text is made available early in a child's life, however, the current hypothesis is that reading will also be learned inductively and emerge naturally, with no significant negative consequences. If this proposal is true, it should soon be possible to create an interactive system, Technology Assisted Reading Acquisition, to allow children to acquire literacy naturally.

  11. Decoding Speech Perception by Native and Non-Native Speakers Using Single-Trial Electrophysiological Data

    PubMed Central

    Brandmeyer, Alex; Farquhar, Jason D. R.; McQueen, James M.; Desain, Peter W. M.

    2013-01-01

    Brain-computer interfaces (BCIs) are systems that use real-time analysis of neuroimaging data to determine the mental state of their user for purposes such as providing neurofeedback. Here, we investigate the feasibility of a BCI based on speech perception. Multivariate pattern classification methods were applied to single-trial EEG data collected during speech perception by native and non-native speakers. Two principal questions were asked: 1) Can differences in the perceived categories of pairs of phonemes be decoded at the single-trial level? 2) Can these same categorical differences be decoded across participants, within or between native-language groups? Results indicated that classification performance progressively increased with respect to the categorical status (within, boundary or across) of the stimulus contrast, and was also influenced by the native language of individual participants. Classifier performance showed strong relationships with traditional event-related potential measures and behavioral responses. The results of the cross-participant analysis indicated an overall increase in average classifier performance when trained on data from all participants (native and non-native). A second cross-participant classifier trained only on data from native speakers led to an overall improvement in performance for native speakers, but a reduction in performance for non-native speakers. We also found that the native language of a given participant could be decoded on the basis of EEG data with accuracy above 80%. These results indicate that electrophysiological responses underlying speech perception can be decoded at the single-trial level, and that decoding performance systematically reflects graded changes in the responses related to the phonological status of the stimuli. This approach could be used in extensions of the BCI paradigm to support perceptual learning during second language acquisition. PMID:23874567

  12. Decoding speech perception by native and non-native speakers using single-trial electrophysiological data.

    PubMed

    Brandmeyer, Alex; Farquhar, Jason D R; McQueen, James M; Desain, Peter W M

    2013-01-01

    Brain-computer interfaces (BCIs) are systems that use real-time analysis of neuroimaging data to determine the mental state of their user for purposes such as providing neurofeedback. Here, we investigate the feasibility of a BCI based on speech perception. Multivariate pattern classification methods were applied to single-trial EEG data collected during speech perception by native and non-native speakers. Two principal questions were asked: 1) Can differences in the perceived categories of pairs of phonemes be decoded at the single-trial level? 2) Can these same categorical differences be decoded across participants, within or between native-language groups? Results indicated that classification performance progressively increased with respect to the categorical status (within, boundary or across) of the stimulus contrast, and was also influenced by the native language of individual participants. Classifier performance showed strong relationships with traditional event-related potential measures and behavioral responses. The results of the cross-participant analysis indicated an overall increase in average classifier performance when trained on data from all participants (native and non-native). A second cross-participant classifier trained only on data from native speakers led to an overall improvement in performance for native speakers, but a reduction in performance for non-native speakers. We also found that the native language of a given participant could be decoded on the basis of EEG data with accuracy above 80%. These results indicate that electrophysiological responses underlying speech perception can be decoded at the single-trial level, and that decoding performance systematically reflects graded changes in the responses related to the phonological status of the stimuli. This approach could be used in extensions of the BCI paradigm to support perceptual learning during second language acquisition.

  13. Audiovisual speech perception in infancy: The influence of vowel identity and infants' productive abilities on sensitivity to (mis)matches between auditory and visual speech cues.

    PubMed

    Altvater-Mackensen, Nicole; Mani, Nivedita; Grossmann, Tobias

    2016-02-01

    Recent studies suggest that infants' audiovisual speech perception is influenced by articulatory experience (Mugitani et al., 2008; Yeung & Werker, 2013). The current study extends these findings by testing if infants' emerging ability to produce native sounds in babbling impacts their audiovisual speech perception. We tested 44 6-month-olds on their ability to detect mismatches between concurrently presented auditory and visual vowels and related their performance to their productive abilities and later vocabulary size. Results show that infants' ability to detect mismatches between auditory and visually presented vowels differs depending on the vowels involved. Furthermore, infants' sensitivity to mismatches is modulated by their current articulatory knowledge and correlates with their vocabulary size at 12 months of age. This suggests that-aside from infants' ability to match nonnative audiovisual cues (Pons et al., 2009)-their ability to match native auditory and visual cues continues to develop during the first year of life. Our findings point to a potential role of salient vowel cues and productive abilities in the development of audiovisual speech perception, and further indicate a relation between infants' early sensitivity to audiovisual speech cues and their later language development.

  14. Speech perception and language acquisition in the first year of life.

    PubMed

    Gervain, Judit; Mehler, Jacques

    2010-01-01

    During the first year of life, infants pass important milestones in language development. We review some of the experimental evidence concerning these milestones in the domains of speech perception, phonological development, word learning, morphosyntactic acquisition, and bilingualism, emphasizing their interactions. We discuss them in the context of their biological underpinnings, introducing the most recent advances not only in language development, but also in neighboring areas such as genetics and the comparative research on animal communication systems. We argue for a theory of language acquisition that integrates behavioral, cognitive, neural, and evolutionary considerations and proposes to unify previously opposing theoretical stances, such as statistical learning, rule-based nativist accounts, and perceptual learning theories.

  15. Age-Related Differences in Speech Rate Perception Do Not Necessarily Entail Age-Related Differences in Speech Rate Use

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Heffner, Christopher C.; Newman, Rochelle S.; Dilley, Laura C.; Idsardi, William J.

    2015-01-01

    Purpose: A new literature has suggested that speech rate can influence the parsing of words quite strongly in speech. The purpose of this study was to investigate differences between younger adults and older adults in the use of context speech rate in word segmentation, given that older adults perceive timing information differently from younger…

  16. Deficits in audiovisual speech perception in normal aging emerge at the level of whole-word recognition.

    PubMed

    Stevenson, Ryan A; Nelms, Caitlin E; Baum, Sarah H; Zurkovsky, Lilia; Barense, Morgan D; Newhouse, Paul A; Wallace, Mark T

    2015-01-01

    Over the next 2 decades, a dramatic shift in the demographics of society will take place, with a rapid growth in the population of older adults. One of the most common complaints with healthy aging is a decreased ability to successfully perceive speech, particularly in noisy environments. In such noisy environments, the presence of visual speech cues (i.e., lip movements) provide striking benefits for speech perception and comprehension, but previous research suggests that older adults gain less from such audiovisual integration than their younger peers. To determine at what processing level these behavioral differences arise in healthy-aging populations, we administered a speech-in-noise task to younger and older adults. We compared the perceptual benefits of having speech information available in both the auditory and visual modalities and examined both phoneme and whole-word recognition across varying levels of signal-to-noise ratio. For whole-word recognition, older adults relative to younger adults showed greater multisensory gains at intermediate SNRs but reduced benefit at low SNRs. By contrast, at the phoneme level both younger and older adults showed approximately equivalent increases in multisensory gain as signal-to-noise ratio decreased. Collectively, the results provide important insights into both the similarities and differences in how older and younger adults integrate auditory and visual speech cues in noisy environments and help explain some of the conflicting findings in previous studies of multisensory speech perception in healthy aging. These novel findings suggest that audiovisual processing is intact at more elementary levels of speech perception in healthy-aging populations and that deficits begin to emerge only at the more complex word-recognition level of speech signals.

  17. Deficits in audiovisual speech perception in normal aging emerge at the level of whole-word recognition

    PubMed Central

    Stevenson, Ryan A.; Nelms, Caitlin; Baum, Sarah H.; Zurkovsky, Lilia; Barense, Morgan D.; Newhouse, Paul A.; Wallace, Mark T.

    2014-01-01

    Over the next two decades, a dramatic shift in the demographics of society will take place, with a rapid growth in the population of older adults. One of the most common complaints with healthy aging is a decreased ability to successfully perceive speech, particularly in noisy environments. In such noisy environments, the presence of visual speech cues (i.e., lip movements) provide striking benefits for speech perception and comprehension, but previous research suggests that older adults gain less from such audiovisual integration than their younger peers. To determine at what processing level these behavioral differences arise in healthy-aging populations, we administered a speech-in-noise task to younger and older adults. We compared the perceptual benefits of having speech information available in both the auditory and visual modalities and examined both phoneme and whole-word recognition across varying levels of signal-to-noise ratio (SNR). For whole-word recognition, older relative to younger adults showed greater multisensory gains at intermediate SNRs, but reduced benefit at low SNRs. By contrast, at the phoneme level both younger and older adults showed approximately equivalent increases in multisensory gain as SNR decreased. Collectively, the results provide important insights into both the similarities and differences in how older and younger adults integrate auditory and visual speech cues in noisy environments, and help explain some of the conflicting findings in previous studies of multisensory speech perception in healthy aging. These novel findings suggest that audiovisual processing is intact at more elementary levels of speech perception in healthy aging populations, and that deficits begin to emerge only at the more complex, word-recognition level of speech signals. PMID:25282337

  18. Cortical asymmetries in speech perception: what’s wrong, what’s right, and what’s left?

    PubMed Central

    McGettigan, Carolyn; Scott, Sophie K.

    2014-01-01

    Over the last 30 years hemispheric asymmetries in speech perception have been construed within a domain general framework, where preferential processing of speech is due to left lateralized, non-linguistic acoustic sensitivities. A prominent version of this argument holds that the left temporal lobe selectively processes rapid/temporal information in sound. Acoustically, this is a poor characterization of speech and there has been little empirical support for a left-hemisphere selectivity for these cues. In sharp contrast, the right temporal lobe is demonstrably sensitive to specific acoustic properties. We suggest that acoustic accounts of speech sensitivities need to be informed by the nature of the speech signal, and that a simple domain general/specific dichotomy may be incorrect. PMID:22521208

  19. Perception of the multisensory coherence of fluent audiovisual speech in infancy: its emergence and the role of experience.

    PubMed

    Lewkowicz, David J; Minar, Nicholas J; Tift, Amy H; Brandon, Melissa

    2015-02-01

    To investigate the developmental emergence of the perception of the multisensory coherence of native and non-native audiovisual fluent speech, we tested 4-, 8- to 10-, and 12- to 14-month-old English-learning infants. Infants first viewed two identical female faces articulating two different monologues in silence and then in the presence of an audible monologue that matched the visible articulations of one of the faces. Neither the 4-month-old nor 8- to 10-month-old infants exhibited audiovisual matching in that they did not look longer at the matching monologue. In contrast, the 12- to 14-month-old infants exhibited matching and, consistent with the emergence of perceptual expertise for the native language, perceived the multisensory coherence of native-language monologues earlier in the test trials than that of non-native language monologues. Moreover, the matching of native audible and visible speech streams observed in the 12- to 14-month-olds did not depend on audiovisual synchrony, whereas the matching of non-native audible and visible speech streams did depend on synchrony. Overall, the current findings indicate that the perception of the multisensory coherence of fluent audiovisual speech emerges late in infancy, that audiovisual synchrony cues are more important in the perception of the multisensory coherence of non-native speech than that of native audiovisual speech, and that the emergence of this skill most likely is affected by perceptual narrowing.

  20. Portuguese Lexical Clusters and CVC Sequences in Speech Perception and Production.

    PubMed

    Cunha, Conceição

    2015-01-01

    This paper investigates similarities between lexical consonant clusters and CVC sequences differing in the presence or absence of a lexical vowel in speech perception and production in two Portuguese varieties. The frequent high vowel deletion in the European variety (EP) and the realization of intervening vocalic elements between lexical clusters in Brazilian Portuguese (BP) may minimize the contrast between lexical clusters and CVC sequences in the two Portuguese varieties. In order to test this hypothesis we present a perception experiment with 72 participants and a physiological analysis of 3-dimensional movement data from 5 EP and 4 BP speakers. The perceptual results confirmed a gradual confusion of lexical clusters and CVC sequences in EP, which corresponded roughly to the gradient consonantal overlap found in production. PMID:26683876

  1. Speech Perception and Production by Sequential Bilingual Children: A Longitudinal Study of Voice Onset Time Acquisition

    PubMed Central

    McCarthy, Kathleen M; Mahon, Merle; Rosen, Stuart; Evans, Bronwen G

    2014-01-01

    The majority of bilingual speech research has focused on simultaneous bilinguals. Yet, in immigrant communities, children are often initially exposed to their family language (L1), before becoming gradually immersed in the host country's language (L2). This is typically referred to as sequential bilingualism. Using a longitudinal design, this study explored the perception and production of the English voicing contrast in 55 children (40 Sylheti-English sequential bilinguals and 15 English monolinguals). Children were tested twice: when they were in nursery (52-month-olds) and 1 year later. Sequential bilinguals' perception and production of English plosives were initially driven by their experience with their L1, but after starting school, changed to match that of their monolingual peers. PMID:25123987

  2. Listening to Yourself Is like Listening to Others: External, but Not Internal, Verbal Self-Monitoring Is Based on Speech Perception

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Huettig, Falk; Hartsuiker, Robert J.

    2010-01-01

    Theories of verbal self-monitoring generally assume an internal (pre-articulatory) monitoring channel, but there is debate about whether this channel relies on speech perception or on production-internal mechanisms. Perception-based theories predict that listening to one's own inner speech has similar behavioural consequences as listening to…

  3. The relationship between the speech perception and the degree of satisfaction among adult users of cochlear implants

    PubMed Central

    Granço, Fernanda Soares; Fernandes, Nayara Freitas; Morettin, Marina; Filho, Orozimbo Alves Costa; Bevilacqua, Maria Cecília

    2013-01-01

    Summary Introduction: In recent years, the benefits associated with the use of cochlear implants (CIs), especially with regard to speech perception, have proven to surpass those produced by the use of hearing aids, making CIs a highly efficient resource for patients with severe/profound hearing loss. However, few studies so far have assessed the satisfaction of adult users of CIs. Objective: To analyze the relationship between the level of speech perception and degree of satisfaction of adult users of CI. Method: This was a prospective cross-sectional study conducted in the Audiological Research Center (CPA) of the Hospital of Craniofacial Anomalies, University of São Paulo (HRAC/USP), in Bauru, São Paulo, Brazil. A total of 12 users of CIs with pre-lingual or post-lingual hearing loss participated in this study. The following tools were used in the assessment: a questionnaire, “Satisfaction with Amplification in Daily Life” (SADL), culturally adapted to Brazilian Portuguese, as well as its relationship with the speech perception results; a speech perception test under quiet conditions; and the Hearing in Noise Test (HINT)Brazil under free field conditions. Results: The participants in the study were on the whole satisfied with their devices, and the degree of satisfaction correlated positively with the ability to perceive monosyllabic words under quiet conditions. The satisfaction did not correlate with the level of speech perception in noisy environments. Conclusion: Assessments of satisfaction may help professionals to predict what other factors, in addition to speech perception, may contribute to the satisfaction of CI users in order to reorganize the intervention process to improve the users' quality of life. PMID:25992014

  4. Electrophysiological Evidence for a Multisensory Speech-Specific Mode of Perception

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stekelenburg, Jeroen J.; Vroomen, Jean

    2012-01-01

    We investigated whether the interpretation of auditory stimuli as speech or non-speech affects audiovisual (AV) speech integration at the neural level. Perceptually ambiguous sine-wave replicas (SWS) of natural speech were presented to listeners who were either in "speech mode" or "non-speech mode". At the behavioral level, incongruent lipread…

  5. Compensation for coarticulation: disentangling auditory and gestural theories of perception of coarticulatory effects in speech.

    PubMed

    Viswanathan, Navin; Magnuson, James S; Fowler, Carol A

    2010-08-01

    According to one approach to speech perception, listeners perceive speech by applying general pattern matching mechanisms to the acoustic signal (e.g., Diehl, Lotto, & Holt, 2004). An alternative is that listeners perceive the phonetic gestures that structured the acoustic signal (e.g., Fowler, 1986). The two accounts have offered different explanations for the phenomenon of compensation for coarticulation (CfC). An example of CfC is that if a speaker produces a gesture with a front place of articulation, it may be pulled slightly backwards if it follows a back place of articulation, and listeners' category boundaries shift (compensate) accordingly. The gestural account appeals to direct attunement to coarticulation to explain CfC, whereas the auditory account explains it by spectral contrast. In previous studies, spectral contrast and gestural consequences of coarticulation have been correlated, such that both accounts made identical predictions. We identify a liquid context in Tamil that disentangles contrast and coarticulation, such that the two accounts make different predictions. In a standard CfC task in Experiment 1, gestural coarticulation rather than spectral contrast determined the direction of CfC. Experiments 2, 3, and 4 demonstrated that tone analogues of the speech precursors failed to produce the same effects observed in Experiment 1, suggesting that simple spectral contrast cannot account for the findings of Experiment 1.

  6. Performance of 3M/house cochlear implant users on tests of speech perception.

    PubMed

    Danhauer, J L; Ghadialy, F B; Eskwitt, D L; Mendel, L L

    1990-10-01

    This report documents both closed- and open-set speech recognition performance for 18 adult experienced users of the 3M/House single-channel cochlear implant. The stimuli included tape-recorded, standard word and sentence recognition tests, an environmental-sound test, nonsense syllables, and sentences presented in auditory (implant-only), visual, and auditory-visual modes. All subjects were tested individually in a single session using their own cochlear implants, set to typical comfort use settings for running speech. Subjects' oral responses to the stimuli were transcribed by the experimenters and scored for percent correct. The results revealed considerable individual differences among the subjects and their performance on different tests. All subjects scored better than chance on the closed-set tests. Although they performed considerably poorer on the open-set tests, approximately half of these subjects demonstrated at least some open-set word recognition, a finding not previously reported in the literature for this device. All subjects performed better on the auditory-visual sentences than on either the auditory or visual conditions alone. These results contribute to the database on speech perception by cochlear implant users and show that open-set word recognition performance was somewhat better for these subjects using this implant than would have been predicted from the literature.

  7. Mapping a lateralization gradient within the ventral stream for auditory speech perception

    PubMed Central

    Specht, Karsten

    2013-01-01

    Recent models on speech perception propose a dual-stream processing network, with a dorsal stream, extending from the posterior temporal lobe of the left hemisphere through inferior parietal areas into the left inferior frontal gyrus, and a ventral stream that is assumed to originate in the primary auditory cortex in the upper posterior part of the temporal lobe and to extend toward the anterior part of the temporal lobe, where it may connect to the ventral part of the inferior frontal gyrus. This article describes and reviews the results from a series of complementary functional magnetic resonance imaging studies that aimed to trace the hierarchical processing network for speech comprehension within the left and right hemisphere with a particular focus on the temporal lobe and the ventral stream. As hypothesized, the results demonstrate a bilateral involvement of the temporal lobes in the processing of speech signals. However, an increasing leftward asymmetry was detected from auditory–phonetic to lexico-semantic processing and along the posterior–anterior axis, thus forming a “lateralization” gradient. This increasing leftward lateralization was particularly evident for the left superior temporal sulcus and more anterior parts of the temporal lobe. PMID:24106470

  8. Compensation for coarticulation: Disentangling auditory and gestural theories of perception of coarticulatory effects in speech

    PubMed Central

    Viswanathan, Navin; Magnuson, James S.; Fowler, Carol A.

    2013-01-01

    According to one approach to speech perception, listeners perceive speech by applying general pattern matching mechanisms to the acoustic signal (e.g., Diehl, Lotto & Holt, 2004). An alternative is that listeners perceive the phonetic gestures that structured the acoustic signal (e.g., Fowler, 1986). The two accounts have offered different explanations for the phenomenon of compensation for coarticulation (CfC). An example of CfC is that if a speaker produces a gesture with a front place of articulation, it may be pulled slightly backwards if it follows a back place of articulation, and listeners’ category boundaries shift (compensate) accordingly. The gestural account appeals to direct attunement to coarticulation to explain CfC, while the auditory account explains it by spectral contrast. In previous studies, spectral contrast and gestural consequences of coarticulation have been correlated, such that both accounts made identical predictions. We identify a liquid context in Tamil that disentangles contrast and coarticulation, such that the two accounts make different predictions. In a standard CfC task in Experiment 1, gestural coarticulation rather than spectral contrast determined the direction of CfC. Experiments 2, 3 and 4 demonstrated that tone analogues of the speech precursors failed to produce the same effects observed in Experiment 1, suggesting that simple spectral contrast cannot account for the findings of Experiment 1. PMID:20695714

  9. Auditory Perception, Suprasegmental Speech Processing, and Vocabulary Development in Chinese Preschoolers.

    PubMed

    Wang, Hsiao-Lan S; Chen, I-Chen; Chiang, Chun-Han; Lai, Ying-Hui; Tsao, Yu

    2016-10-01

    The current study examined the associations between basic auditory perception, speech prosodic processing, and vocabulary development in Chinese kindergartners, specifically, whether early basic auditory perception may be related to linguistic prosodic processing in Chinese Mandarin vocabulary acquisition. A series of language, auditory, and linguistic prosodic tests were given to 100 preschool children who had not yet learned how to read Chinese characters. The results suggested that lexical tone sensitivity and intonation production were significantly correlated with children's general vocabulary abilities. In particular, tone awareness was associated with comprehensive language development, whereas intonation production was associated with both comprehensive and expressive language development. Regression analyses revealed that tone sensitivity accounted for 36% of the unique variance in vocabulary development, whereas intonation production accounted for 6% of the variance in vocabulary development. Moreover, auditory frequency discrimination was significantly correlated with lexical tone sensitivity, syllable duration discrimination, and intonation production in Mandarin Chinese. Also it provided significant contributions to tone sensitivity and intonation production. Auditory frequency discrimination may indirectly affect early vocabulary development through Chinese speech prosody.

  10. Auditory Perception, Suprasegmental Speech Processing, and Vocabulary Development in Chinese Preschoolers.

    PubMed

    Wang, Hsiao-Lan S; Chen, I-Chen; Chiang, Chun-Han; Lai, Ying-Hui; Tsao, Yu

    2016-10-01

    The current study examined the associations between basic auditory perception, speech prosodic processing, and vocabulary development in Chinese kindergartners, specifically, whether early basic auditory perception may be related to linguistic prosodic processing in Chinese Mandarin vocabulary acquisition. A series of language, auditory, and linguistic prosodic tests were given to 100 preschool children who had not yet learned how to read Chinese characters. The results suggested that lexical tone sensitivity and intonation production were significantly correlated with children's general vocabulary abilities. In particular, tone awareness was associated with comprehensive language development, whereas intonation production was associated with both comprehensive and expressive language development. Regression analyses revealed that tone sensitivity accounted for 36% of the unique variance in vocabulary development, whereas intonation production accounted for 6% of the variance in vocabulary development. Moreover, auditory frequency discrimination was significantly correlated with lexical tone sensitivity, syllable duration discrimination, and intonation production in Mandarin Chinese. Also it provided significant contributions to tone sensitivity and intonation production. Auditory frequency discrimination may indirectly affect early vocabulary development through Chinese speech prosody. PMID:27519239

  11. A comparison of English versus Spanish voicing perception using natural speech

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sinnott, Joan M.; Camchong, Jazmin

    2001-05-01

    English versus Spanish voicing perception over the past 30 years has been almost exclusively studied using synthetic VOT continua, and there has been very little research using natural VOT stimuli. This study used a balanced symmetrical design to explore the effects of training English and Spanish listeners to categorize natural tokens of English versus Spanish /b-p/ using four different vowels /i,e,a,u/. Extensive training with feedback was conducted over several months, and percent correct categorization and reaction time were analyzed. Results showed that each language group consistently exhibited enhanced performance for native speech, and this difference persisted with training. For example, reaction times leveled off at approximately 50 ms faster for native versus non-native speech. It was concluded that, while lab training can improve the ability to perceive a non-native voicing contrast, it does not result in native-like perception. Some preliminary results from monkeys using the same stimuli and procedure indicate that, unlike human adults, monkeys are more like human infants and find English and Spanish voicing contrasts equally salient. [Research supported by NIH.

  12. Knowledge and attitudes of teachers regarding the impact of classroom acoustics on speech perception and learning.

    PubMed

    Ramma, Lebogang

    2009-01-01

    This study investigated the knowledge and attitude of primary school teachers regarding the impact of poor classroom acoustics on learners' speech perception and learning in class. Classrooms with excessive background noise and reflective surfaces could be a barrier to learning, and it is important that teachers are aware of this. There is currently limited research data about teachers' knowledge regarding the topic of classroom acoustics. Seventy teachers from three Johannesburg primary schools participated in this study. A survey by way of structured self-administered questionnaire was the primary data collection method. The findings of this study showed that most of the participants in this study did not have adequate knowledge of classroom acoustics. Most of the participants were also unaware of the impact that classrooms with poor acoustic environments can have on speech perception and learning. These results are discussed in relation to the practical implication of empowering teachers to manage the acoustic environment of their classrooms, limitations of the study as well as implications for future research.

  13. Reducing Channel Interaction Through Cochlear Implant Programming May Improve Speech Perception

    PubMed Central

    Litvak, Leonid

    2016-01-01

    Speech perception among cochlear implant (CI) listeners is highly variable. High degrees of channel interaction are associated with poorer speech understanding. Two methods for reducing channel interaction, focusing electrical fields, and deactivating subsets of channels were assessed by the change in vowel and consonant identification scores with different program settings. The main hypotheses were that (a) focused stimulation will improve phoneme recognition and (b) speech perception will improve when channels with high thresholds are deactivated. To select high-threshold channels for deactivation, subjects’ threshold profiles were processed to enhance the peaks and troughs, and then an exclusion or inclusion criterion based on the mean and standard deviation was used. Low-threshold channels were selected manually and matched in number and apex-to-base distribution. Nine ears in eight adult CI listeners with Advanced Bionics HiRes90k devices were tested with six experimental programs. Two, all-channel programs, (a) 14-channel partial tripolar (pTP) and (b) 14-channel monopolar (MP), and four variable-channel programs, derived from these two base programs, (c) pTP with high- and (d) low-threshold channels deactivated, and (e) MP with high- and (f) low-threshold channels deactivated, were created. Across subjects, performance was similar with pTP and MP programs. However, poorer performing subjects (scoring < 62% correct on vowel identification) tended to perform better with the all-channel pTP than with the MP program (1 > 2). These same subjects showed slightly more benefit with the reduced channel MP programs (5 and 6). Subjective ratings were consistent with performance. These finding suggest that reducing channel interaction may benefit poorer performing CI listeners. PMID:27317668

  14. Effect of ECAP-based choice of stimulation rate on speech-perception performance

    PubMed Central

    Bournique, Jennifer L.; Hughes, Michelle L.; Baudhuin, Jacquelyn L.; Goehring, Jenny L.

    2012-01-01

    Objectives The objective determination of an optimal stimulation rate for CI users could save time and take the uncertainty out of choosing a rate based on patient preference. Electrically evoked compound action potential (ECAP) temporal response patterns vary across stimulation rates and cochlear regions, and could be useful in objectively predicting an optimal rate. Given that only one rate of stimulation can be used for current CI devices, we propose two potential ways to investigate whether a rate that produces stochastic ECAP responses (termed stochastic rate) can be used to predict an optimal stimulation rate. The first approach follows that of Hochmair et al. (2003), which compared performance across three cochlear regions using limited electrode sets. This approach, which has inherent limitations, may provide insight into the effects of region-specific stochastic rates on performance. The second, more direct approach is to compare speech perception for full-array maps that each employs a stochastic rate from a different region of the cochlea. Using both of these methods in a set of two acute experiments, the goal of the present study was to assess the effects of stochastic rate on speech perception. Design Speech-perception stimuli included the Hearing in Noise Test (HINT sentences), Consonant-Nucleus-Consonant (CNC) phonemes, and Iowa Medial Consonants. For Experiment 1, 22 ears in 20 CI recipients were tested in three map conditions (basal-only, middle-only, and apical-only electrode sets) using the subject’s daily-use stimulation rate to first explore the level of performance possible with region-specific maps. A one-way repeated-measures analysis of variance (RM ANOVA) was used to examine the effect of electrode region on performance. A subset of nine subjects was tested with three additional maps (basal-only, middle-only, and apical-only electrode sets) using the region-specific stochastic rate, as measured in a previous study. A two-way RM ANOVA was

  15. How auditory discontinuities and linguistic experience affect the perception of speech and non-speech in English- and Spanish-speaking listeners

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hay, Jessica F.; Holt, Lori L.; Lotto, Andrew J.; Diehl, Randy L.

    2005-04-01

    The present study was designed to investigate the effects of long-term linguistic experience on the perception of non-speech sounds in English and Spanish speakers. Research using tone-onset-time (TOT) stimuli, a type of non-speech analogue of voice-onset-time (VOT) stimuli, has suggested that there is an underlying auditory basis for the perception of stop consonants based on a threshold for detecting onset asynchronies in the vicinity of +20 ms. For English listeners, stop consonant labeling boundaries are congruent with the positive auditory discontinuity, while Spanish speakers place their VOT labeling boundaries and discrimination peaks in the vicinity of 0 ms VOT. The present study addresses the question of whether long-term linguistic experience with different VOT categories affects the perception of non-speech stimuli that are analogous in their acoustic timing characteristics. A series of synthetic VOT stimuli and TOT stimuli were created for this study. Using language appropriate labeling and ABX discrimination tasks, labeling boundaries (VOT) and discrimination peaks (VOT and TOT) are assessed for 24 monolingual English speakers and 24 monolingual Spanish speakers. The interplay between language experience and auditory biases are discussed. [Work supported by NIDCD.

  16. Bidirectional clear speech perception benefit for native and high-proficiency non-native talkers and listeners: Intelligibility and accentednessa

    PubMed Central

    Smiljanić, Rajka; Bradlow, Ann R.

    2011-01-01

    This study investigated how native language background interacts with speaking style adaptations in determining levels of speech intelligibility. The aim was to explore whether native and high proficiency non-native listeners benefit similarly from native and non-native clear speech adjustments. The sentence-in-noise perception results revealed that fluent non-native listeners gained a large clear speech benefit from native clear speech modifications. Furthermore, proficient non-native talkers in this study implemented conversational-to-clear speaking style modifications in their second language (L2) that resulted in significant intelligibility gain for both native and non-native listeners. The results of the accentedness ratings obtained for native and non-native conversational and clear speech sentences showed that while intelligibility was improved, the presence of foreign accent remained constant in both speaking styles. This suggests that objective intelligibility and subjective accentedness are two independent dimensions of non-native speech. Overall, these results provide strong evidence that greater experience in L2 processing leads to improved intelligibility in both production and perception domains. These results also demonstrated that speaking style adaptations along with less signal distortion can contribute significantly towards successful native and non-native interactions. PMID:22225056

  17. Auditory Sensitivity, Speech Perception, L1 Chinese, and L2 English Reading Abilities in Hong Kong Chinese Children

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zhang, Juan; McBride-Chang, Catherine

    2014-01-01

    A 4-stage developmental model, in which auditory sensitivity is fully mediated by speech perception at both the segmental and suprasegmental levels, which are further related to word reading through their associations with phonological awareness, rapid automatized naming, verbal short-term memory and morphological awareness, was tested with…

  18. The effect of different open plan and enclosed classroom acoustic conditions on speech perception in Kindergarten children.

    PubMed

    Mealings, Kiri T; Demuth, Katherine; Buchholz, Jörg M; Dillon, Harvey

    2015-10-01

    Open plan classrooms, where several classes are in the same room, have recently re-emerged in Australian primary schools. This paper explores how the acoustics of four Kindergarten classrooms [an enclosed classroom (25 children), double classroom (44 children), fully open plan triple classroom (91 children), and a semi-open plan K-6 "21st century learning space" (205 children)] affect speech perception. Twenty-two to 23 5-6-year-old children in each classroom participated in an online four-picture choice speech perception test while adjacent classes engaged in quiet versus noisy activities. The noise levels recorded during the test were higher the larger the classroom, except in the noisy condition for the K-6 classroom, possibly due to acoustic treatments. Linear mixed effects models revealed children's performance accuracy and speed decreased as noise level increased. Additionally, children's speech perception abilities decreased the further away they were seated from the loudspeaker in noise levels above 50 dBA. These results suggest that fully open plan classrooms are not appropriate learning environments for critical listening activities with young children due to their high intrusive noise levels which negatively affect speech perception. If open plan classrooms are desired, they need to be acoustically designed to be appropriate for critical listening activities.

  19. Thinking outside the (Voice) Box: A Case Study of Students' Perceptions of the Relevance of Anatomy to Speech Pathology

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Weir, Kristy A.

    2008-01-01

    Speech pathology students readily identify the importance of a sound understanding of anatomical structures central to their intended profession. In contrast, they often do not recognize the relevance of a broader understanding of structure and function. This study aimed to explore students' perceptions of the relevance of anatomy to speech…

  20. Comparison of Word-, Sentence-, and Phoneme-Based Training Strategies in Improving the Perception of Spectrally Distorted Speech

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stacey, Paula C.; Summerfield, A. Quentin

    2008-01-01

    Purpose: To compare the effectiveness of 3 self-administered strategies for auditory training that might improve speech perception by adult users of cochlear implants. The strategies are based, respectively, on discriminating isolated words, words in sentences, and phonemes in nonsense syllables. Method: Participants were 18 normal-hearing adults…

  1. Impact of Second-Language Experience in Infancy: Brain Measures of First- and Second-Language Speech Perception

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Conboy, Barbara T.; Kuhl, Patricia K.

    2011-01-01

    Language experience "narrows" speech perception by the end of infants' first year, reducing discrimination of non-native phoneme contrasts while improving native-contrast discrimination. Previous research showed that declines in non-native discrimination were reversed by second-language experience provided at 9-10 months, but it is not known…

  2. The neurobiology of speech perception and production--can functional imaging tell us anything we did not already know?

    PubMed

    Scott, Sophie K

    2012-01-01

    Our understanding of the neurobiological basis for human speech production and perception has benefited from insights from psychology, neuropsychology and neurology. In this overview, I outline some of the ways that functional imaging has added to this knowledge and argue that, as a neuroanatomical tool, functional imaging has led to some significant contributions. PMID:22840926

  3. Auditory, Visual, and Auditory-Visual Speech Perception by Individuals with Cochlear Implants versus Individuals with Hearing Aids

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Most, Tova; Rothem, Hilla; Luntz, Michal

    2009-01-01

    The researchers evaluated the contribution of cochlear implants (CIs) to speech perception by a sample of prelingually deaf individuals implanted after age 8 years. This group was compared with a group with profound hearing impairment (HA-P), and with a group with severe hearing impairment (HA-S), both of which used hearing aids. Words and…

  4. The Effect of Frequency Transposition on Speech Perception in Adolescents and Young Adults with Profound Hearing Loss

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gou, J.; Smith, J.; Valero, J.; Rubio, I.

    2011-01-01

    This paper reports on a clinical trial evaluating outcomes of a frequency-lowering technique for adolescents and young adults with severe to profound hearing impairment. Outcomes were defined by changes in aided thresholds, speech perception, and acceptance. The participants comprised seven young people aged between 13 and 25 years. They were…

  5. Basic to Applied Research: The Benefits of Audio-Visual Speech Perception Research in Teaching Foreign Languages

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Erdener, Dogu

    2016-01-01

    Traditionally, second language (L2) instruction has emphasised auditory-based instruction methods. However, this approach is restrictive in the sense that speech perception by humans is not just an auditory phenomenon but a multimodal one, and specifically, a visual one as well. In the past decade, experimental studies have shown that the…

  6. The Neurobiology of Speech Perception and Production-Can Functional Imaging Tell Us Anything We Did Not Already Know?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Scott, Sophie K.

    2012-01-01

    Our understanding of the neurobiological basis for human speech production and perception has benefited from insights from psychology, neuropsychology and neurology. In this overview, I outline some of the ways that functional imaging has added to this knowledge and argue that, as a neuroanatomical tool, functional imaging has led to some…

  7. Individual Differences in Language Ability Are Related to Variation in Word Recognition, Not Speech Perception: Evidence from Eye Movements

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McMurray, Bob; Munson, Cheyenne; Tomblin, J. Bruce

    2014-01-01

    Purpose: The authors examined speech perception deficits associated with individual differences in language ability, contrasting auditory, phonological, or lexical accounts by asking whether lexical competition is differentially sensitive to fine-grained acoustic variation. Method: Adolescents with a range of language abilities (N = 74, including…

  8. Cognitive control of speech perception across the lifespan: A large-scale cross-sectional dichotic listening study.

    PubMed

    Westerhausen, René; Bless, Josef J; Passow, Susanne; Kompus, Kristiina; Hugdahl, Kenneth

    2015-06-01

    The ability to use cognitive-control functions to regulate speech perception is thought to be crucial in mastering developmental challenges, such as language acquisition during childhood or compensation for sensory decline in older age, enabling interpersonal communication and meaningful social interactions throughout the entire life span. Although previous studies indicate that cognitive control of speech perception is subject to developmental changes, its exact developmental trajectory has not been described. Thus, examining a sample of 2,988 participants (1,119 women) with an age range from 5 to 89 years, the aim of the present cross-sectional study was to examine the development of cognitive control of speech perception across the life span using age as continuous predictor. Based on data collected with the forced-attention consonant-vowel dichotic listening paradigm, the data analysis revealed an inverted U-shaped association of age and performance level: A steep increase in performance level was seen throughout childhood and adolescence, reaching highest performance in the early 20s, and was followed by a monotonous, continuous decline into late adulthood. Thus, cognitive control of speech perceptions shows similar life span developmental trajectories as observed regarding cognitive-control functions in other domains, for example, as assessed in the visual domain.

  9. Perception of speech rhythm in second language: the case of rhythmically similar L1 and L2

    PubMed Central

    Ordin, Mikhail; Polyanskaya, Leona

    2015-01-01

    We investigated the perception of developmental changes in timing patterns that happen in the course of second language (L2) acquisition, provided that the native and the target languages of the learner are rhythmically similar (German and English). It was found that speech rhythm in L2 English produced by German learners becomes increasingly stress-timed as acquisition progresses. This development is captured by the tempo-normalized rhythm measures of durational variability. Advanced learners also deliver speech at a faster rate. However, when native speakers have to classify the timing patterns characteristic of L2 English of German learners at different proficiency levels, they attend to speech rate cues and ignore the differences in speech rhythm. PMID:25859228

  10. Functional Overlap between Regions Involved in Speech Perception and in Monitoring One's Own Voice during Speech Production

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zheng, Zane Z.; Munhall, Kevin G.; Johnsrude, Ingrid S.

    2010-01-01

    The fluency and the reliability of speech production suggest a mechanism that links motor commands and sensory feedback. Here, we examined the neural organization supporting such links by using fMRI to identify regions in which activity during speech production is modulated according to whether auditory feedback matches the predicted outcome or…

  11. Single-trial analysis of the neural correlates of speech quality perception

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Porbadnigk, Anne K.; Treder, Matthias S.; Blankertz, Benjamin; Antons, Jan-Niklas; Schleicher, Robert; Möller, Sebastian; Curio, Gabriel; Müller, Klaus-Robert

    2013-10-01

    Objective. Assessing speech quality perception is a challenge typically addressed in behavioral and opinion-seeking experiments. Only recently, neuroimaging methods were introduced, which were used to study the neural processing of quality at group level. However, our electroencephalography (EEG) studies show that the neural correlates of quality perception are highly individual. Therefore, it became necessary to establish dedicated machine learning methods for decoding subject-specific effects. Approach. The effectiveness of our methods is shown by the data of an EEG study that investigates how the quality of spoken vowels is processed neurally. Participants were asked to indicate whether they had perceived a degradation of quality (signal-correlated noise) in vowels, presented in an oddball paradigm. Main results. We find that the P3 amplitude is attenuated with increasing noise. Single-trial analysis allows one to show that this is partly due to an increasing jitter of the P3 component. A novel classification approach helps to detect trials with presumably non-conscious processing at the threshold of perception. We show that this approach uncovers a non-trivial confounder between neural hits and neural misses. Significance. The combined use of EEG signals and machine learning methods results in a significant ‘neural’ gain in sensitivity (in processing quality loss) when compared to standard behavioral evaluation; averaged over 11 subjects, this amounts to a relative improvement in sensitivity of 35%.

  12. Perception of interrupted speech: Effects of dual-rate gating on the intelligibility of words and sentencesa

    PubMed Central

    Shafiro, Valeriy; Sheft, Stanley; Risley, Robert

    2011-01-01

    Perception of interrupted speech and the influence of speech materials and memory load were investigated using one or two concurrent square-wave gating functions. Sentences (Experiment 1) and random one-, three-, and five-word sequences (Experiment 2) were interrupted using either a primary gating rate alone (0.5−24 Hz) or a combined primary and faster secondary rate. The secondary rate interrupted only speech left intact after primary gating, reducing the original speech to 25%. In both experiments, intelligibility increased with primary rate, but varied with memory load and speech material (highest for sentences, lowest for five-word sequences). With dual-rate gating of sentences, intelligibility with fast secondary rates was superior to that with single rates and a 25% duty cycle, approaching that of single rates with a 50% duty cycle for some low and high rates. For dual-rate gating of words, the positive effect of fast secondary gating was smaller than for sentences, and the advantage of sentences over word-sequences was not obtained in many dual-rate conditions. These findings suggest that integration of interrupted speech fragments after gating depends on the duration of the gated speech interval and that sufficiently robust acoustic-phonetic word cues are needed to access higher-level contextual sentence information. PMID:21973362

  13. Required attention for synthesized speech perception for three levels of linguistic redundancy

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Simpson, C. A.; Hart, S. G.

    1977-01-01

    The study evaluates the attention required for synthesized speech perception with reference to three levels of linguistic redundancy. Twelve commercial airline pilots were individually tested for 16 cockpit warning messages eight of which consisted of two monosyllabic key words and eight of which consisted of two polysyllabic key words. Three levels of linguistic redundancy were identified: monosyllabic words, polysyllabic words, and sentences. The experiment contained a message familiarization phase and a message recognition phase. It was found that: (1) when the messages are part of a previously learned and recently heard set, and the subject is familiar with the phrasing, the attention needed to recognize the message is not a function of the level of linguistic redundancy, and (2) there is a quantitative and qualitative difference between recognition and comprehension processes; only in the case of active comprehension does additional redundancy reduce attention requirements.

  14. Dynamic visual speech perception in a patient with visual form agnosia.

    PubMed

    Munhall, K G; Servos, P; Santi, A; Goodale, M A

    2002-10-01

    To examine the role of dynamic cues in visual speech perception, a patient with visual form agnosia (DF) was tested with a set of static and dynamic visual displays of three vowels. Five conditions were tested: (1) auditory only which provided only vocal pitch information, (2) dynamic visual only, (3) dynamic audiovisual with vocal pitch information, (4) dynamic audiovisual with full voice information and (5) static visual only images of postures during vowel production. DF showed normal performance in all conditions except the static visual only condition in which she scored at chance. Control subjects scored close to ceiling in this condition. The results suggest that spatiotemporal signatures for objects and events are processed separately from static form cues.

  15. Production and perception of temporal patterns in native and non-native speech.

    PubMed

    Bent, Tessa; Bradlow, Ann R; Smith, Bruce L

    2008-01-01

    Two experiments examined production and perception of English temporal patterns by native and non-native participants. Experiment 1 indicated that native and non-native (L1 = Chinese) talkers differed significantly in their production of one English duration pattern (i.e., vowel lengthening before voiced versus voice-less consonants) but not another (i.e., tense versus lax vowels). Experiment 2 tested native and non-native listener identification of words that differed in voicing of the final consonant by the native and non-native talkers whose productions were substantially different in experiment 1. Results indicated that differences in native and non-native intelligibility may be partially explained by temporal pat-tern differences in vowel duration although other cues such as presence of stop releases and burst duration may also contribute. Additionally, speech intelligibility depends on shared phonetic knowledge between talkers and listeners rather than only on accuracy relative to idealized production norms.

  16. An Assessment of Behavioral Dynamic Information Processing Measures in Audiovisual Speech Perception

    PubMed Central

    Altieri, Nicholas; Townsend, James T.

    2011-01-01

    Research has shown that visual speech perception can assist accuracy in identification of spoken words. However, little is known about the dynamics of the processing mechanisms involved in audiovisual integration. In particular, architecture and capacity, measured using response time methodologies, have not been investigated. An issue related to architecture concerns whether the auditory and visual sources of the speech signal are integrated “early” or “late.” We propose that “early” integration most naturally corresponds to coactive processing whereas “late” integration corresponds to separate decisions parallel processing. We implemented the double factorial paradigm in two studies. First, we carried out a pilot study using a two-alternative forced-choice discrimination task to assess architecture, decision rule, and provide a preliminary assessment of capacity (integration efficiency). Next, Experiment 1 was designed to specifically assess audiovisual integration efficiency in an ecologically valid way by including lower auditory S/N ratios and a larger response set size. Results from the pilot study support a separate decisions parallel, late integration model. Results from both studies showed that capacity was severely limited for high auditory signal-to-noise ratios. However, Experiment 1 demonstrated that capacity improved as the auditory signal became more degraded. This evidence strongly suggests that integration efficiency is vitally affected by the S/N ratio. PMID:21980314

  17. Comparing spatial tuning curves, spectral ripple resolution, and speech perception in cochlear implant users

    PubMed Central

    Anderson, Elizabeth S.; Nelson, David A.; Kreft, Heather; Nelson, Peggy B.; Oxenham, Andrew J.

    2011-01-01

    Spectral ripple discrimination thresholds were measured in 15 cochlear-implant users with broadband (350–5600 Hz) and octave-band noise stimuli. The results were compared with spatial tuning curve (STC) bandwidths previously obtained from the same subjects. Spatial tuning curve bandwidths did not correlate significantly with broadband spectral ripple discrimination thresholds but did correlate significantly with ripple discrimination thresholds when the rippled noise was confined to an octave-wide passband, centered on the STC’s probe electrode frequency allocation. Ripple discrimination thresholds were also measured for octave-band stimuli in four contiguous octaves, with center frequencies from 500 Hz to 4000 Hz. Substantial variations in thresholds with center frequency were found in individuals, but no general trends of increasing or decreasing resolution from apex to base were observed in the pooled data. Neither ripple nor STC measures correlated consistently with speech measures in noise and quiet in the sample of subjects in this study. Overall, the results suggest that spectral ripple discrimination measures provide a reasonable measure of spectral resolution that correlates well with more direct, but more time-consuming, measures of spectral resolution, but that such measures do not always provide a clear and robust predictor of performance in speech perception tasks. PMID:21786905

  18. Speech perception and functional benefit after cochlear implantation: a multicentre survey in Finland.

    PubMed

    Välimaa, T T; Sorri, M J

    2001-01-01

    This study was done to survey the effect of cochlear implantation on hearing level, speech perception and listening performance in Finnish-speaking adults. The subjects of the study comprise 67 adults. Pure-tone thresholds (0.125-8 kHz), word recognition and listening performance were studied before and after implantation. After switch-on of the implant, the median values of PTA(0.5-4 kHz) in the sound field were fairly stable across the evaluation period. Three months after switch-on of the implant, the mean word recognition score was 54%. There was clear improvement in the mean word recognition scores over a longer period of time, the mean score being 71% 24 months after switch-on. Six months after switch-on, the majority of subjects (40/48) were able to recognize some speech without speechreading, and 26 of these 48 subjects were able to use the telephone with a known speaker, gaining good functional benefit from the implantation.

  19. Effects of language experience and stimulus context on the neural organization and categorical perception of speech.

    PubMed

    Bidelman, Gavin M; Lee, Chia-Cheng

    2015-10-15

    Categorical perception (CP) represents a fundamental process in converting continuous speech acoustics into invariant percepts. Using scalp-recorded event-related brain potentials (ERPs), we investigated how tone-language experience and stimulus context influence the CP for lexical tones-pitch patterns used by a majority of the world's languages to signal word meaning. Stimuli were vowel pairs overlaid with a high-level tone (T1) followed by a pitch continuum spanning between dipping (T3) and rising (T2) contours of the Mandarin tonal space. To vary context, T1 either preceded or followed the critical T2/T3 continuum. Behaviorally, native Chinese showed stronger CP as evident by their steeper, more dichotomous psychometric functions and faster identification of linguistic pitch patterns than native English-speaking controls. Stimulus context produced shifts in both groups' categorical boundary but was more exaggerated in native listeners. Analysis of source activity extracted from primary auditory cortex revealed overall stronger neural encoding of tone in Chinese compared to English, indicating experience-dependent plasticity in cortical pitch processing. More critically, "neurometric" functions derived from multidimensional scaling and clustering of source ERPs established: (i) early auditory cortical activity could accurately predict listeners' psychometric speech identification and contextual shifts in the perceptual boundary; (ii) neurometric profiles were organized more categorically in native speakers. Our data show that tone-language experience refines early auditory cortical brain representations so as to supply more faithful templates to neural mechanisms subserving lexical pitch categorization. We infer that contextual influence on the CP for tones is determined by language experience and the frequency of pitch patterns as they occur in listeners' native lexicon. PMID:26146197

  20. Effects of language experience and stimulus context on the neural organization and categorical perception of speech.

    PubMed

    Bidelman, Gavin M; Lee, Chia-Cheng

    2015-10-15

    Categorical perception (CP) represents a fundamental process in converting continuous speech acoustics into invariant percepts. Using scalp-recorded event-related brain potentials (ERPs), we investigated how tone-language experience and stimulus context influence the CP for lexical tones-pitch patterns used by a majority of the world's languages to signal word meaning. Stimuli were vowel pairs overlaid with a high-level tone (T1) followed by a pitch continuum spanning between dipping (T3) and rising (T2) contours of the Mandarin tonal space. To vary context, T1 either preceded or followed the critical T2/T3 continuum. Behaviorally, native Chinese showed stronger CP as evident by their steeper, more dichotomous psychometric functions and faster identification of linguistic pitch patterns than native English-speaking controls. Stimulus context produced shifts in both groups' categorical boundary but was more exaggerated in native listeners. Analysis of source activity extracted from primary auditory cortex revealed overall stronger neural encoding of tone in Chinese compared to English, indicating experience-dependent plasticity in cortical pitch processing. More critically, "neurometric" functions derived from multidimensional scaling and clustering of source ERPs established: (i) early auditory cortical activity could accurately predict listeners' psychometric speech identification and contextual shifts in the perceptual boundary; (ii) neurometric profiles were organized more categorically in native speakers. Our data show that tone-language experience refines early auditory cortical brain representations so as to supply more faithful templates to neural mechanisms subserving lexical pitch categorization. We infer that contextual influence on the CP for tones is determined by language experience and the frequency of pitch patterns as they occur in listeners' native lexicon.

  1. Temporal dynamics of sensorimotor integration in speech perception and production: independent component analysis of EEG data

    PubMed Central

    Jenson, David; Bowers, Andrew L.; Harkrider, Ashley W.; Thornton, David; Cuellar, Megan; Saltuklaroglu, Tim

    2014-01-01

    Activity in anterior sensorimotor regions is found in speech production and some perception tasks. Yet, how sensorimotor integration supports these functions is unclear due to a lack of data examining the timing of activity from these regions. Beta (~20 Hz) and alpha (~10 Hz) spectral power within the EEG μ rhythm are considered indices of motor and somatosensory activity, respectively. In the current study, perception conditions required discrimination (same/different) of syllables pairs (/ba/ and /da/) in quiet and noisy conditions. Production conditions required covert and overt syllable productions and overt word production. Independent component analysis was performed on EEG data obtained during these conditions to (1) identify clusters of μ components common to all conditions and (2) examine real-time event-related spectral perturbations (ERSP) within alpha and beta bands. 17 and 15 out of 20 participants produced left and right μ-components, respectively, localized to precentral gyri. Discrimination conditions were characterized by significant (pFDR < 0.05) early alpha event-related synchronization (ERS) prior to and during stimulus presentation and later alpha event-related desynchronization (ERD) following stimulus offset. Beta ERD began early and gained strength across time. Differences were found between quiet and noisy discrimination conditions. Both overt syllable and word productions yielded similar alpha/beta ERD that began prior to production and was strongest during muscle activity. Findings during covert production were weaker than during overt production. One explanation for these findings is that μ-beta ERD indexes early predictive coding (e.g., internal modeling) and/or overt and covert attentional/motor processes. μ-alpha ERS may index inhibitory input to the premotor cortex from sensory regions prior to and during discrimination, while μ-alpha ERD may index sensory feedback during speech rehearsal and production. PMID:25071633

  2. Perception of the Multisensory Coherence of Fluent Audiovisual Speech in Infancy: Its Emergence & the Role of Experience

    PubMed Central

    Lewkowicz, David J.; Minar, Nicholas J.; Tift, Amy H.; Brandon, Melissa

    2014-01-01

    To investigate the developmental emergence of the ability to perceive the multisensory coherence of native and non-native audiovisual fluent speech, we tested 4-, 8–10, and 12–14 month-old English-learning infants. Infants first viewed two identical female faces articulating two different monologues in silence and then in the presence of an audible monologue that matched the visible articulations of one of the faces. Neither the 4-month-old nor the 8–10 month-old infants exhibited audio-visual matching in that neither group exhibited greater looking at the matching monologue. In contrast, the 12–14 month-old infants exhibited matching and, consistent with the emergence of perceptual expertise for the native language, they perceived the multisensory coherence of native-language monologues earlier in the test trials than of non-native language monologues. Moreover, the matching of native audible and visible speech streams observed in the 12–14 month olds did not depend on audio-visual synchrony whereas the matching of non-native audible and visible speech streams did depend on synchrony. Overall, the current findings indicate that the perception of the multisensory coherence of fluent audiovisual speech emerges late in infancy, that audio-visual synchrony cues are more important in the perception of the multisensory coherence of non-native than native audiovisual speech, and that the emergence of this skill most likely is affected by perceptual narrowing. PMID:25462038

  3. Audio-visual speech perception in infants and toddlers with Down syndrome, fragile X syndrome, and Williams syndrome.

    PubMed

    D'Souza, Dean; D'Souza, Hana; Johnson, Mark H; Karmiloff-Smith, Annette

    2016-08-01

    Typically-developing (TD) infants can construct unified cross-modal percepts, such as a speaking face, by integrating auditory-visual (AV) information. This skill is a key building block upon which higher-level skills, such as word learning, are built. Because word learning is seriously delayed in most children with neurodevelopmental disorders, we assessed the hypothesis that this delay partly results from a deficit in integrating AV speech cues. AV speech integration has rarely been investigated in neurodevelopmental disorders, and never previously in infants. We probed for the McGurk effect, which occurs when the auditory component of one sound (/ba/) is paired with the visual component of another sound (/ga/), leading to the perception of an illusory third sound (/da/ or /tha/). We measured AV integration in 95 infants/toddlers with Down, fragile X, or Williams syndrome, whom we matched on Chronological and Mental Age to 25 TD infants. We also assessed a more basic AV perceptual ability: sensitivity to matching vs. mismatching AV speech stimuli. Infants with Williams syndrome failed to demonstrate a McGurk effect, indicating poor AV speech integration. Moreover, while the TD children discriminated between matching and mismatching AV stimuli, none of the other groups did, hinting at a basic deficit or delay in AV speech processing, which is likely to constrain subsequent language development. PMID:27498221

  4. Audio-visual speech perception in infants and toddlers with Down syndrome, fragile X syndrome, and Williams syndrome.

    PubMed

    D'Souza, Dean; D'Souza, Hana; Johnson, Mark H; Karmiloff-Smith, Annette

    2016-08-01

    Typically-developing (TD) infants can construct unified cross-modal percepts, such as a speaking face, by integrating auditory-visual (AV) information. This skill is a key building block upon which higher-level skills, such as word learning, are built. Because word learning is seriously delayed in most children with neurodevelopmental disorders, we assessed the hypothesis that this delay partly results from a deficit in integrating AV speech cues. AV speech integration has rarely been investigated in neurodevelopmental disorders, and never previously in infants. We probed for the McGurk effect, which occurs when the auditory component of one sound (/ba/) is paired with the visual component of another sound (/ga/), leading to the perception of an illusory third sound (/da/ or /tha/). We measured AV integration in 95 infants/toddlers with Down, fragile X, or Williams syndrome, whom we matched on Chronological and Mental Age to 25 TD infants. We also assessed a more basic AV perceptual ability: sensitivity to matching vs. mismatching AV speech stimuli. Infants with Williams syndrome failed to demonstrate a McGurk effect, indicating poor AV speech integration. Moreover, while the TD children discriminated between matching and mismatching AV stimuli, none of the other groups did, hinting at a basic deficit or delay in AV speech processing, which is likely to constrain subsequent language development.

  5. Simulating the effect of interaural mismatch in the insertion depth of bilateral cochlear implants on speech perception.

    PubMed

    van Besouw, Rachel M; Forrester, Lisa; Crowe, Nicholas D; Rowan, Daniel

    2013-08-01

    A bilateral advantage for diotically presented stimuli has been observed for cochlear implant (CI) users and is suggested to be dependent on symmetrical implant performance. Studies using CI simulations have not shown a true "bilateral" advantage, but a "better ear" effect and have demonstrated that performance decreases with increasing basalward shift in insertion depth. This study aimed to determine whether there is a bilateral advantage for CI simulations with interaurally matched insertions and the extent to which performance is affected by interaural insertion depth mismatch. Speech perception in noise and self-reported ease of listening were measured using matched bilateral, mismatched bilateral and unilateral CI simulations over four insertion depths for seventeen normal hearing listeners. Speech scores and ease of listening reduced with increasing basalward shift in (interaurally matched) insertion depth. A bilateral advantage for speech perception was only observed when the insertion depths were interaurally matched and deep. No advantage was observed for small to moderate interaural insertion-depth mismatches, consistent with a better ear effect. Finally, both measures were poorer than expected for a better ear effect for large mismatches, suggesting that misalignment of the electrode arrays may prevent a bilateral advantage and detrimentally affect perception of diotically presented speech.

  6. Neural networks for learning and prediction with applications to remote sensing and speech perception

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gjaja, Marin N.

    1997-11-01

    Neural networks for supervised and unsupervised learning are developed and applied to problems in remote sensing, continuous map learning, and speech perception. Adaptive Resonance Theory (ART) models are real-time neural networks for category learning, pattern recognition, and prediction. Unsupervised fuzzy ART networks synthesize fuzzy logic and neural networks, and supervised ARTMAP networks incorporate ART modules for prediction and classification. New ART and ARTMAP methods resulting from analyses of data structure, parameter specification, and category selection are developed. Architectural modifications providing flexibility for a variety of applications are also introduced and explored. A new methodology for automatic mapping from Landsat Thematic Mapper (TM) and terrain data, based on fuzzy ARTMAP, is developed. System capabilities are tested on a challenging remote sensing problem, prediction of vegetation classes in the Cleveland National Forest from spectral and terrain features. After training at the pixel level, performance is tested at the stand level, using sites not seen during training. Results are compared to those of maximum likelihood classifiers, back propagation neural networks, and K-nearest neighbor algorithms. Best performance is obtained using a hybrid system based on a convex combination of fuzzy ARTMAP and maximum likelihood predictions. This work forms the foundation for additional studies exploring fuzzy ARTMAP's capability to estimate class mixture composition for non-homogeneous sites. Exploratory simulations apply ARTMAP to the problem of learning continuous multidimensional mappings. A novel system architecture retains basic ARTMAP properties of incremental and fast learning in an on-line setting while adding components to solve this class of problems. The perceptual magnet effect is a language-specific phenomenon arising early in infant speech development that is characterized by a warping of speech sound perception. An

  7. Parents and Speech Therapist Perception of Parental Involvement in Kailila Therapy Center, Jakarta, Indonesia

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jane, Griselda; Tunjungsari, Harini

    2015-01-01

    Parental involvement in a speech therapy has not been prioritized in most therapy centers in Indonesia. One of the therapy centers that has recognized the importance of parental involvement is Kailila Speech Therapy Center. In Kailila speech therapy center, parental involvement in children's speech therapy is an obligation that has been…

  8. On the possible role of brain rhythms in speech perception: intelligibility of time-compressed speech with periodic and aperiodic insertions of silence.

    PubMed

    Ghitza, Oded; Greenberg, Steven

    2009-01-01

    This study was motivated by the prospective role played by brain rhythms in speech perception. The intelligibility - in terms of word error rate - of natural-sounding, synthetically generated sentences was measured using a paradigm that alters speech-energy rhythm over a range of frequencies. The material comprised 96 semantically unpredictable sentences, each approximately 2 s long (6-8 words per sentence), generated by a high-quality text-to-speech (TTS) synthesis engine. The TTS waveform was time-compressed by a factor of 3, creating a signal with a syllable rhythm three times faster than the original, and whose intelligibility is poor (<50% words correct). A waveform with an artificial rhythm was produced by automatically segmenting the time-compressed waveform into consecutive 40-ms fragments, each followed by a silent interval. The parameters varied were the length of the silent interval (0-160 ms) and whether the lengths of silence were equal ('periodic') or not ('aperiodic'). The performance curve (word error rate as a function of mean duration of silence) was U-shaped. The lowest word error rate (i.e., highest intelligibility) occurred when the silence was 80 ms long and inserted periodically. This is also the condition for which word error rate increased when the silence was inserted aperiodically. These data are consistent with a model (TEMPO) in which low-frequency brain rhythms affect the ability to decode the speech signal. In TEMPO, optimum intelligibility is achieved when the syllable rhythm is within the range of the high theta-frequency brain rhythms (6-12 Hz), comparable to the rate at which segments and syllables are articulated in conversational speech. PMID:19390234

  9. Effects of irrelevant speech and traffic noise on speech perception and cognitive performance in elementary school children.

    PubMed

    Klatte, Maria; Meis, Markus; Sukowski, Helga; Schick, August

    2007-01-01

    The effects of background noise of moderate intensity on short-term storage and processing of verbal information were analyzed in 6 to 8 year old children. In line with adult studies on "irrelevant sound effect" (ISE), serial recall of visually presented digits was severely disrupted by background speech that the children did not understand. Train noises of equal Intensity however, had no effect. Similar results were demonstrated with tasks requiring storage and processing of heard information. Memory for nonwords, execution of oral instructions and categorizing speech sounds were significantly disrupted by irrelevant speech. The affected functions play a fundamental role in the acquisition of spoken and written language. Implications concerning current models of the ISE and the acoustic conditions in schools and kindergardens are discussed. PMID:18025757

  10. Perception of Emotion in Conversational Speech by Younger and Older Listeners.

    PubMed

    Schmidt, Juliane; Janse, Esther; Scharenborg, Odette

    2016-01-01

    This study investigated whether age and/or differences in hearing sensitivity influence the perception of the emotion dimensions arousal (calm vs. aroused) and valence (positive vs. negative attitude) in conversational speech. To that end, this study specifically focused on the relationship between participants' ratings of short affective utterances and the utterances' acoustic parameters (pitch, intensity, and articulation rate) known to be associated with the emotion dimensions arousal and valence. Stimuli consisted of short utterances taken from a corpus of conversational speech. In two rating tasks, younger and older adults either rated arousal or valence using a 5-point scale. Mean intensity was found to be the main cue participants used in the arousal task (i.e., higher mean intensity cueing higher levels of arousal) while mean F 0 was the main cue in the valence task (i.e., higher mean F 0 being interpreted as more negative). Even though there were no overall age group differences in arousal or valence ratings, compared to younger adults, older adults responded less strongly to mean intensity differences cueing arousal and responded more strongly to differences in mean F 0 cueing valence. Individual hearing sensitivity among the older adults did not modify the use of mean intensity as an arousal cue. However, individual hearing sensitivity generally affected valence ratings and modified the use of mean F 0. We conclude that age differences in the interpretation of mean F 0 as a cue for valence are likely due to age-related hearing loss, whereas age differences in rating arousal do not seem to be driven by hearing sensitivity differences between age groups (as measured by pure-tone audiometry). PMID:27303340

  11. Prenatal exposure to antidepressants and depressed maternal mood alter trajectory of infant speech perception.

    PubMed

    Weikum, Whitney M; Oberlander, Tim F; Hensch, Takao K; Werker, Janet F

    2012-10-16

    Language acquisition reflects a complex interplay between biology and early experience. Psychotropic medication exposure has been shown to alter neural plasticity and shift sensitive periods in perceptual development. Notably, serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SRIs) are antidepressant agents increasingly prescribed to manage antenatal mood disorders, and depressed maternal mood per se during pregnancy impacts infant behavior, also raising concerns about long-term consequences following such developmental exposure. We studied whether infants' language development is altered by prenatal exposure to SRIs and whether such effects differ from exposure to maternal mood disturbances. Infants from non-SRI-treated mothers with little or no depression (control), depressed but non-SRI-treated (depressed-only), and depressed and treated with an SRI (SRI-exposed) were studied at 36 wk gestation (while still in utero) on a consonant and vowel discrimination task and at 6 and 10 mo of age on a nonnative speech and visual language discrimination task. Whereas the control infants responded as expected (success at 6 mo and failure at 10 mo) the SRI-exposed infants failed to discriminate the language differences at either age and the depressed-only infants succeeded at 10 mo instead of 6 mo. Fetuses at 36 wk gestation in the control condition performed as expected, with a response on vowel but not consonant discrimination, whereas the SRI-exposed fetuses showed accelerated perceptual development by discriminating both vowels and consonants. Thus, prenatal depressed maternal mood and SRI exposure were found to shift developmental milestones bidirectionally on infant speech perception tasks.

  12. Perception of Emotion in Conversational Speech by Younger and Older Listeners

    PubMed Central

    Schmidt, Juliane; Janse, Esther; Scharenborg, Odette

    2016-01-01

    This study investigated whether age and/or differences in hearing sensitivity influence the perception of the emotion dimensions arousal (calm vs. aroused) and valence (positive vs. negative attitude) in conversational speech. To that end, this study specifically focused on the relationship between participants’ ratings of short affective utterances and the utterances’ acoustic parameters (pitch, intensity, and articulation rate) known to be associated with the emotion dimensions arousal and valence. Stimuli consisted of short utterances taken from a corpus of conversational speech. In two rating tasks, younger and older adults either rated arousal or valence using a 5-point scale. Mean intensity was found to be the main cue participants used in the arousal task (i.e., higher mean intensity cueing higher levels of arousal) while mean F0 was the main cue in the valence task (i.e., higher mean F0 being interpreted as more negative). Even though there were no overall age group differences in arousal or valence ratings, compared to younger adults, older adults responded less strongly to mean intensity differences cueing arousal and responded more strongly to differences in mean F0 cueing valence. Individual hearing sensitivity among the older adults did not modify the use of mean intensity as an arousal cue. However, individual hearing sensitivity generally affected valence ratings and modified the use of mean F0. We conclude that age differences in the interpretation of mean F0 as a cue for valence are likely due to age-related hearing loss, whereas age differences in rating arousal do not seem to be driven by hearing sensitivity differences between age groups (as measured by pure-tone audiometry). PMID:27303340

  13. Analysis of practice-role perceptions of physical therapy, occupational therapy, and speech-language therapy students.

    PubMed

    Conner-Kerr, T A; Wittman, P; Muzzarelli, R

    1998-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to determine whether physical therapy (PT), occupational therapy (OT), and speech-language therapy (SLP) students shared common perceptions of the practice roles of the three disciplines. The survey instrument used in this study contained 55 questions that addressed practice-role perceptions. The questions were based on a case study. A total of 172 undergraduate students (PT 71, OT 52, SLP 49) from a southeastern university participated. Chi-square test of association was used to analyze the data. Results showed that PT, OT, and SLP students shared common perceptions of administrative and educational practice roles but differed on their perceptions of assessment and physical/mental treatment roles. Practice-role confusion was particularly acute between OT and PT and between OT and SLP students in these areas.

  14. Effects of Age and Hearing Loss on the Relationship between Discrimination of Stochastic Frequency Modulation and Speech Perception

    PubMed Central

    Sheft, Stanley; Shafiro, Valeriy; Lorenzi, Christian; McMullen, Rachel; Farrell, Caitlin

    2012-01-01

    Objective The frequency modulation (FM) of speech can convey linguistic information and also enhance speech-stream coherence and segmentation. Using a clinically oriented approach, the purpose of the present study was to examine the effects of age and hearing loss on the ability to discriminate between stochastic patterns of low-rate FM and determine whether difficulties in speech perception experienced by older listeners relate to a deficit in this ability. Design Data were collected from 18 normal-hearing young adults, and 18 participants who were at least 60 years old, nine normal-hearing and nine with a mild-to-moderate sensorineural hearing loss. Using stochastic frequency modulators derived from 5-Hz lowpass noise applied to a 1-kHz carrier, discrimination thresholds were measured in terms of frequency excursion (ΔF) both in quiet and with a speech-babble masker present, stimulus duration, and signal-to-noise ratio (SNRFM) in the presence of a speech-babble masker. Speech perception ability was evaluated using Quick Speech-in-Noise (QuickSIN) sentences in four-talker babble. Results Results showed a significant effect of age, but not of hearing loss among the older listeners, for FM discrimination conditions with masking present (ΔF and SNRFM). The effect of age was not significant for the FM measures based on stimulus duration. ΔF and SNRFM were also the two conditions for which performance was significantly correlated with listener age when controlling for effect of hearing loss as measured by pure-tone average. With respect to speech-in-noise ability, results from the SNRFM condition were significantly correlated with QuickSIN performance. Conclusions Results indicate that aging is associated with reduced ability to discriminate moderate-duration patterns of low-rate stochastic FM. Furthermore, the relationship between QuickSIN performance and the SNRFM thresholds suggests that the difficulty experienced by older listeners with speech

  15. Assessing the Use of Speech and Language Measures in Relation to Parental Perceptions of Development After Early Cochlear Implantation

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Frank R.; Wang, Nae-Yuh; Fink, Nancy E.; Quittner, Alexandra L.; Eisenberg, Laurie S.; Tobey, Emily A.; Niparko, John K.

    2009-01-01

    Objective Clinicians and investigators use multiple outcome measures after early cochlear implantation (CI) to assess auditory skills, speech, and language effects. Are certain outcome measures better associated with optimal childhood development from the perspective of parents? We studied the association between several commonly used outcome instruments and a measure of parental perceptions of development to gain insight into how our clinical tests reflect parental perceptions of a child's developmental status. Study Design Cross-sectional analysis. Setting Six academic centers. Patients One hundred eighty-eight deaf children (<6 yr) 1 year after CI activation enrolled in the longitudinal Childhood Development after CI study. Main Outcome Measures Measures of auditory skills, speech, and language. Parental perceptions of development quantified with a visual analogue scale (visual analogue scale–development). Methods Nonparametric and parametric regression methods were used to model the relationship between outcome measures and visual analogue scale–development scores. Results All outcome measures were positively associated with parental perceptions of development, but more robust associations were observed with language measures and a parent-report scale of auditory skills than with a selected measure of closed-set speech. For speech and language data, differences were observed in the trajectories of associations among younger (2–3 yr) versus older (4–5 yr) children. Conclusion Our results demonstrate the importance of measuring multiple outcome measures after early pediatric CI. The degree to which an outcome measure reflects childhood development as perceived by parents may be affected by the child's age. Measures that are based on parental report and broader outcome measures focused on verbal language offer the potential for a fuller understanding of the true effectiveness of early implantation. PMID:18309575

  16. The sound of your lips: electrophysiological cross-modal interactions during hand-to-face and face-to-face speech perception

    PubMed Central

    Treille, Avril; Vilain, Coriandre; Sato, Marc

    2014-01-01

    Recent magneto-encephalographic and electro-encephalographic studies provide evidence for cross-modal integration during audio-visual and audio-haptic speech perception, with speech gestures viewed or felt from manual tactile contact with the speaker’s face. Given the temporal precedence of the haptic and visual signals on the acoustic signal in these studies, the observed modulation of N1/P2 auditory evoked responses during bimodal compared to unimodal speech perception suggest that relevant and predictive visual and haptic cues may facilitate auditory speech processing. To further investigate this hypothesis, auditory evoked potentials were here compared during auditory-only, audio-visual and audio-haptic speech perception in live dyadic interactions between a listener and a speaker. In line with previous studies, auditory evoked potentials were attenuated and speeded up during both audio-haptic and audio-visual compared to auditory speech perception. Importantly, the observed latency and amplitude reduction did not significantly depend on the degree of visual and haptic recognition of the speech targets. Altogether, these results further demonstrate cross-modal interactions between the auditory, visual and haptic speech signals. Although they do not contradict the hypothesis that visual and haptic sensory inputs convey predictive information with respect to the incoming auditory speech input, these results suggest that, at least in live conversational interactions, systematic conclusions on sensory predictability in bimodal speech integration have to be taken with caution, with the extraction of predictive cues likely depending on the variability of the speech stimuli. PMID:24860533

  17. Speech motor brain regions are differentially recruited during perception of native and foreign-accented phonemes for first and second language listeners

    PubMed Central

    Callan, Daniel; Callan, Akiko; Jones, Jeffery A.

    2014-01-01

    Brain imaging studies indicate that speech motor areas are recruited for auditory speech perception, especially when intelligibility is low due to environmental noise or when speech is accented. The purpose of the present study was to determine the relative contribution of brain regions to the processing of speech containing phonetic categories from one's own language, speech with accented samples of one's native phonetic categories, and speech with unfamiliar phonetic categories. To that end, native English and Japanese speakers identified the speech sounds /r/ and /l/ that were produced by native English speakers (unaccented) and Japanese speakers (foreign-accented) while functional magnetic resonance imaging measured their brain activity. For native English speakers, the Japanese accented speech was more difficult to categorize than the unaccented English speech. In contrast, Japanese speakers have difficulty distinguishing between /r/ and /l/, so both the Japanese accented and English unaccented speech were difficult to categorize. Brain regions involved with listening to foreign-accented productions of a first language included primarily the right cerebellum, left ventral inferior premotor cortex PMvi, and Broca's area. Brain regions most involved with listening to a second-language phonetic contrast (foreign-accented and unaccented productions) also included the left PMvi and the right cerebellum. Additionally, increased activity was observed in the right PMvi, the left and right ventral superior premotor cortex PMvs, and the left cerebellum. These results support a role for speech motor regions during the perception of foreign-accented native speech and for perception of difficult second-language phonetic contrasts. PMID:25232302

  18. Cue Integration in Categorical Tasks: Insights from Audio-Visual Speech Perception

    PubMed Central

    Bejjanki, Vikranth Rao; Clayards, Meghan; Knill, David C.; Aslin, Richard N.

    2011-01-01

    Previous cue integration studies have examined continuous perceptual dimensions (e.g., size) and have shown that human cue integration is well described by a normative model in which cues are weighted in proportion to their sensory reliability, as estimated from single-cue performance. However, this normative model may not be applicable to categorical perceptual dimensions (e.g., phonemes). In tasks defined over categorical perceptual dimensions, optimal cue weights should depend not only on the sensory variance affecting the perception of each cue but also on the environmental variance inherent in each task-relevant category. Here, we present a computational and experimental investigation of cue integration in a categorical audio-visual (articulatory) speech perception task. Our results show that human performance during audio-visual phonemic labeling is qualitatively consistent with the behavior of a Bayes-optimal observer. Specifically, we show that the participants in our task are sensitive, on a trial-by-trial basis, to the sensory uncertainty associated with the auditory and visual cues, during phonemic categorization. In addition, we show that while sensory uncertainty is a significant factor in determining cue weights, it is not the only one and participants' performance is consistent with an optimal model in which environmental, within category variability also plays a role in determining cue weights. Furthermore, we show that in our task, the sensory variability affecting the visual modality during cue-combination is not well estimated from single-cue performance, but can be estimated from multi-cue performance. The findings and computational principles described here represent a principled first step towards characterizing the mechanisms underlying human cue integration in categorical tasks. PMID:21637344

  19. Some Issues in Infant Speech Perception: Do the Means Justify the Ends?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Weitzman, Raymond S.

    2007-01-01

    A major focus of research on language acquisition in infancy involves experimental studies of the infant's ability to discriminate various kinds of speech or speech-like stimuli. This research has demonstrated that infants are sensitive to many fine-grained differences in the acoustic properties of speech utterance. Furthermore, these empirical…

  20. Perception drives production across sensory modalities: A network for sensorimotor integration of visual speech.

    PubMed

    Venezia, Jonathan H; Fillmore, Paul; Matchin, William; Isenberg, A Lisette; Hickok, Gregory; Fridriksson, Julius

    2016-02-01

    Sensory information is critical for movement control, both for defining the targets of actions and providing feedback during planning or ongoing movements. This holds for speech motor control as well, where both auditory and somatosensory information have been shown to play a key role. Recent clinical research demonstrates that individuals with severe speech production deficits can show a dramatic improvement in fluency during online mimicking of an audiovisual speech signal suggesting the existence of a visuomotor pathway for speech motor control. Here we used fMRI in healthy individuals to identify this new visuomotor circuit for speech production. Participants were asked to perceive and covertly rehearse nonsense syllable sequences presented auditorily, visually, or audiovisually. The motor act of rehearsal, which is prima facie the same whether or not it is cued with a visible talker, produced different patterns of sensorimotor activation when cued by visual or audiovisual speech (relative to auditory speech). In particular, a network of brain regions including the left posterior middle temporal gyrus and several frontoparietal sensorimotor areas activated more strongly during rehearsal cued by a visible talker versus rehearsal cued by auditory speech alone. Some of these brain regions responded exclusively to rehearsal cued by visual or audiovisual speech. This result has significant implications for models of speech motor control, for the treatment of speech output disorders, and for models of the role of speech gesture imitation in development.

  1. EXPERIMENTAL ANALYSIS OF THE CONTROL OF SPEECH PRODUCTION AND PERCEPTION--VI. PROGRESS REPORT NO. 6.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    LANE, HARLAN

    VARIOUS ASPECTS OF THE PROGRESS OF AN EXPERIMENTAL PROGRAM IN SPEECH CONTROL WERE REPORTED. THE TOPICS COVERED IN THE DISCUSSIONS WERE (1) ACOUSTIC AND DISCRIMINATIVE PROPERTIES OF SPEECH SOUNDS, (2) MATCHING FUNCTIONS AND EQUAL-SENSATION CONTOURS FOR LOUDNESS, (3) RELATIONS BETWEEN IDENTIFICATION AND DISCRIMINATION FUNCTIONS FOR SPEECH AND…

  2. Using auditory-visual speech to probe the basis of noise-impaired consonant-vowel perception in dyslexia and auditory neuropathy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ramirez, Joshua; Mann, Virginia

    2005-08-01

    Both dyslexics and auditory neuropathy (AN) subjects show inferior consonant-vowel (CV) perception in noise, relative to controls. To better understand these impairments, natural acoustic speech stimuli that were masked in speech-shaped noise at various intensities were presented to dyslexic, AN, and control subjects either in isolation or accompanied by visual articulatory cues. AN subjects were expected to benefit from the pairing of visual articulatory cues and auditory CV stimuli, provided that their speech perception impairment reflects a relatively peripheral auditory disorder. Assuming that dyslexia reflects a general impairment of speech processing rather than a disorder of audition, dyslexics were not expected to similarly benefit from an introduction of visual articulatory cues. The results revealed an increased effect of noise masking on the perception of isolated acoustic stimuli by both dyslexic and AN subjects. More importantly, dyslexics showed less effective use of visual articulatory cues in identifying masked speech stimuli and lower visual baseline performance relative to AN subjects and controls. Last, a significant positive correlation was found between reading ability and the ameliorating effect of visual articulatory cues on speech perception in noise. These results suggest that some reading impairments may stem from a central deficit of speech processing.

  3. Dialect effects in speech perception: the role of vowel duration in Parisian French and Swiss French.

    PubMed

    Miller, Joanne L; Mondini, Michèle; Grosjean, François; Dommergues, Jean-Yves

    2011-12-01

    The current experiments examined how native Parisian French and native Swiss French listeners use vowel duration in perceiving the /[character: see text]/-/o/ contrast. In both Parisian and Swiss French /ol is longer than /[character: see text]/, but the difference is relatively large in Swiss French and quite small in Parisian French. In Experiment I we found a parallel effect in perception. For native listeners of both dialects, the perceived best exemplars of /o/ were longer than those of /[character: see text]/. However, there was a substantial difference in best-exemplar duration for /[character: see text]/ and /o/ for Swiss French listeners, but only a small difference in best-exemplar duration for Parisian French listeners. In Experiment 2 we found that this precise pattern depended not only on the native dialect of the listeners, but also on whether the stimuli being judged had the detailed acoustic characteristics of the native dialect. These findings indicate that listeners use fine-grained information in the speech signal in a dialect-specific manner when mapping the acoustic signal onto vowel categories of their language.

  4. Change in Speech Perception and Auditory Evoked Potentials over Time after Unilateral Cochlear Implantation in Postlingually Deaf Adults.

    PubMed

    Purdy, Suzanne C; Kelly, Andrea S

    2016-02-01

    Speech perception varies widely across cochlear implant (CI) users and typically improves over time after implantation. There is also some evidence for improved auditory evoked potentials (shorter latencies, larger amplitudes) after implantation but few longitudinal studies have examined the relationship between behavioral and evoked potential measures after implantation in postlingually deaf adults. The relationship between speech perception and auditory evoked potentials was investigated in newly implanted cochlear implant users from the day of implant activation to 9 months postimplantation, on five occasions, in 10 adults age 27 to 57 years who had been bilaterally profoundly deaf for 1 to 30 years prior to receiving a unilateral CI24 cochlear implant. Changes over time in middle latency response (MLR), mismatch negativity, and obligatory cortical auditory evoked potentials and word and sentence speech perception scores were examined. Speech perception improved significantly over the 9-month period. MLRs varied and showed no consistent change over time. Three participants aged in their 50s had absent MLRs. The pattern of change in N1 amplitudes over the five visits varied across participants. P2 area increased significantly for 1,000- and 4,000-Hz tones but not for 250 Hz. The greatest change in P2 area occurred after 6 months of implant experience. Although there was a trend for mismatch negativity peak latency to reduce and width to increase after 3 months of implant experience, there was considerable variability and these changes were not significant. Only 60% of participants had a detectable mismatch initially; this increased to 100% at 9 months. The continued change in P2 area over the period evaluated, with a trend for greater change for right hemisphere recordings, is consistent with the pattern of incremental change in speech perception scores over time. MLR, N1, and mismatch negativity changes were inconsistent and hence P2 may be a more robust measure

  5. Speech, Speech!

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McComb, Gordon

    1982-01-01

    Discussion focuses on the nature of computer-generated speech and voice synthesis today. State-of-the-art devices for home computers are called text-to-speech (TTS) systems. Details about the operation and use of TTS synthesizers are provided, and the time saving in programing over previous methods is emphasized. (MP)

  6. Atypical audio-visual speech perception and McGurk effects in children with specific language impairment

    PubMed Central

    Leybaert, Jacqueline; Macchi, Lucie; Huyse, Aurélie; Champoux, François; Bayard, Clémence; Colin, Cécile; Berthommier, Frédéric

    2014-01-01

    Audiovisual speech perception of children with specific language impairment (SLI) and children with typical language development (TLD) was compared in two experiments using /aCa/ syllables presented in the context of a masking release paradigm. Children had to repeat syllables presented in auditory alone, visual alone (speechreading), audiovisual congruent and incongruent (McGurk) conditions. Stimuli were masked by either stationary (ST) or amplitude modulated (AM) noise. Although children with SLI were less accurate in auditory and audiovisual speech perception, they showed similar auditory masking release effect than children with TLD. Children with SLI also had less correct responses in speechreading than children with TLD, indicating impairment in phonemic processing of visual speech information. In response to McGurk stimuli, children with TLD showed more fusions in AM noise than in ST noise, a consequence of the auditory masking release effect and of the influence of visual information. Children with SLI did not show this effect systematically, suggesting they were less influenced by visual speech. However, when the visual cues were easily identified, the profile of responses to McGurk stimuli was similar in both groups, suggesting that children with SLI do not suffer from an impairment of audiovisual integration. An analysis of percent of information transmitted revealed a deficit in the children with SLI, particularly for the place of articulation feature. Taken together, the data support the hypothesis of an intact peripheral processing of auditory speech information, coupled with a supra modal deficit of phonemic categorization in children with SLI. Clinical implications are discussed. PMID:24904454

  7. Mapping the Developmental Trajectory and Correlates of Enhanced Pitch Perception on Speech Processing in Adults with ASD.

    PubMed

    Mayer, Jennifer L; Hannent, Ian; Heaton, Pamela F

    2016-05-01

    Whilst enhanced perception has been widely reported in individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASDs), relatively little is known about the developmental trajectory and impact of atypical auditory processing on speech perception in intellectually high-functioning adults with ASD. This paper presents data on perception of complex tones and speech pitch in adult participants with high-functioning ASD and typical development, and compares these with pre-existing data using the same paradigm with groups of children and adolescents with and without ASD. As perceptual processing abnormalities are likely to influence behavioural performance, regression analyses were carried out on the adult data set. The findings revealed markedly different pitch discrimination trajectories and language correlates across diagnostic groups. While pitch discrimination increased with age and correlated with receptive vocabulary in groups without ASD, it was enhanced in childhood and stable across development in ASD. Pitch discrimination scores did not correlate with receptive vocabulary scores in the ASD group and for adults with ASD superior pitch perception was associated with sensory atypicalities and diagnostic measures of symptom severity. We conclude that the development of pitch discrimination, and its associated mechanisms markedly distinguish those with and without ASD.

  8. Autonomic Nervous System Responses During Perception of Masked Speech may Reflect Constructs other than Subjective Listening Effort.

    PubMed

    Francis, Alexander L; MacPherson, Megan K; Chandrasekaran, Bharath; Alvar, Ann M

    2016-01-01

    Typically, understanding speech seems effortless and automatic. However, a variety of factors may, independently or interactively, make listening more effortful. Physiological measures may help to distinguish between the application of different cognitive mechanisms whose operation is perceived as effortful. In the present study, physiological and behavioral measures associated with task demand were collected along with behavioral measures of performance while participants listened to and repeated sentences. The goal was to measure psychophysiological reactivity associated with three degraded listening conditions, each of which differed in terms of the source of the difficulty (distortion, energetic masking, and informational masking), and therefore were expected to engage different cognitive mechanisms. These conditions were chosen to be matched for overall performance (keywords correct), and were compared to listening to unmasked speech produced by a natural voice. The three degraded conditions were: (1) Unmasked speech produced by a computer speech synthesizer, (2) Speech produced by a natural voice and masked byspeech-shaped noise and (3) Speech produced by a natural voice and masked by two-talker babble. Masked conditions were both presented at a -8 dB signal to noise ratio (SNR), a level shown in previous research to result in comparable levels of performance for these stimuli and maskers. Performance was measured in terms of proportion of key words identified correctly, and task demand or effort was quantified subjectively by self-report. Measures of psychophysiological reactivity included electrodermal (skin conductance) response frequency and amplitude, blood pulse amplitude and pulse rate. Results suggest that the two masked conditions evoked stronger psychophysiological reactivity than did the two unmasked conditions even when behavioral measures of listening performance and listeners' subjective perception of task demand were comparable across the three

  9. Autonomic Nervous System Responses During Perception of Masked Speech may Reflect Constructs other than Subjective Listening Effort

    PubMed Central

    Francis, Alexander L.; MacPherson, Megan K.; Chandrasekaran, Bharath; Alvar, Ann M.

    2016-01-01

    Typically, understanding speech seems effortless and automatic. However, a variety of factors may, independently or interactively, make listening more effortful. Physiological measures may help to distinguish between the application of different cognitive mechanisms whose operation is perceived as effortful. In the present study, physiological and behavioral measures associated with task demand were collected along with behavioral measures of performance while participants listened to and repeated sentences. The goal was to measure psychophysiological reactivity associated with three degraded listening conditions, each of which differed in terms of the source of the difficulty (distortion, energetic masking, and informational masking), and therefore were expected to engage different cognitive mechanisms. These conditions were chosen to be matched for overall performance (keywords correct), and were compared to listening to unmasked speech produced by a natural voice. The three degraded conditions were: (1) Unmasked speech produced by a computer speech synthesizer, (2) Speech produced by a natural voice and masked byspeech-shaped noise and (3) Speech produced by a natural voice and masked by two-talker babble. Masked conditions were both presented at a -8 dB signal to noise ratio (SNR), a level shown in previous research to result in comparable levels of performance for these stimuli and maskers. Performance was measured in terms of proportion of key words identified correctly, and task demand or effort was quantified subjectively by self-report. Measures of psychophysiological reactivity included electrodermal (skin conductance) response frequency and amplitude, blood pulse amplitude and pulse rate. Results suggest that the two masked conditions evoked stronger psychophysiological reactivity than did the two unmasked conditions even when behavioral measures of listening performance and listeners’ subjective perception of task demand were comparable across the

  10. Auditory sensitivity, speech perception, L1 Chinese, and L2 English reading abilities in Hong Kong Chinese children.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Juan; McBride-Chang, Catherine

    2014-04-01

    A 4-stage developmental model, in which auditory sensitivity is fully mediated by speech perception at both the segmental and suprasegmental levels, which are further related to word reading through their associations with phonological awareness, rapid automatized naming, verbal short-term memory and morphological awareness, was tested with concurrently collected data on 153 2nd- and 3rd-grade Hong Kong Chinese children. Nested model comparisons were conducted to test this model separately against alternatives in relation to both Chinese and English word reading using structural equation modeling. For Chinese word reading, the proposed 4-stage model was demonstrated to be the best model. Auditory sensitivity was associated with speech perception, which was related to Chinese word reading mainly through its relations to morphological awareness and rapid automatized naming. In contrast, for English word reading, the best model required an additional direct path from suprasegmental sensitivity (in Chinese) to English word reading. That is, in addition to phonological awareness, Chinese speech prosody was also directly associated with English word recognition.

  11. Audiovisual perception of natural speech is impaired in adult dyslexics: an ERP study.

    PubMed

    Rüsseler, J; Gerth, I; Heldmann, M; Münte, T F

    2015-02-26

    The present study used event-related brain potentials (ERPs) to investigate audiovisual integration processes in the perception of natural speech in a group of German adult developmental dyslexic readers. Twelve dyslexic and twelve non-dyslexic adults viewed short videos of a male German speaker. Disyllabic German nouns served as stimulus material. The auditory and the visual stimulus streams were segregated to create four conditions: in the congruent condition, the spoken word and the auditory word were identical. In the incongruent condition, the auditory and the visual word (i.e., the lip movements of the utterance) were different. Furthermore, on half of the trials, white noise (45 dB SPL) was superimposed on the auditory trace. Subjects had to say aloud the word they understood after they viewed the video. Behavioral data. Dyslexic readers committed more errors compared to normal readers in the noise conditions, and this effect was particularly present for congruent trials. ERPs showed a distinct N170 component at temporo-parietal electrodes that was smaller in amplitude for dyslexic readers. Both, normal and dyslexic readers, showed a clear effect of noise at centro-parietal electrodes between 300 and 600 ms. An analysis of error trials reflecting audiovisual integration (verbal responses in the incongruent noise condition that are a mix of the visual and the auditory word) revealed more positive ERPs for dyslexic readers at temporo-parietal electrodes 200-500 ms poststimulus. For normal readers, no such effect was present. These findings are discussed as reflecting increased effort in dyslexics under circumstances of distorted acoustic input. The superimposition of noise leads dyslexics to rely more on the integration of auditory and visual input (lip reading). Furthermore, the smaller N170-amplitudes indicate deficits in the processing of moving faces in dyslexic adults. PMID:25534719

  12. Audibility, speech perception and processing of temporal cues in ribbon synaptic disorders due to OTOF mutations.

    PubMed

    Santarelli, Rosamaria; del Castillo, Ignacio; Cama, Elona; Scimemi, Pietro; Starr, Arnold

    2015-12-01

    Mutations in the OTOF gene encoding otoferlin result in a disrupted function of the ribbon synapses with impairment of the multivesicular glutamate release. Most affected subjects present with congenital hearing loss and abnormal auditory brainstem potentials associated with preserved cochlear hair cell activities (otoacoustic emissions, cochlear microphonics [CMs]). Transtympanic electrocochleography (ECochG) has recently been proposed for defining the details of potentials arising in both the cochlea and auditory nerve in this disorder, and with a view to shedding light on the pathophysiological mechanisms underlying auditory dysfunction. We review the audiological and electrophysiological findings in children with congenital profound deafness carrying two mutant alleles of the OTOF gene. We show that cochlear microphonic (CM) amplitude and summating potential (SP) amplitude and latency are normal, consistently with a preserved outer and inner hair cell function. In the majority of OTOF children, the SP component is followed by a markedly prolonged low-amplitude negative potential replacing the compound action potential (CAP) recorded in normally-hearing children. This potential is identified at intensities as low as 90 dB below the behavioral threshold. In some ears, a synchronized CAP is superimposed on the prolonged responses at high intensity. Stimulation at high rates reduces the amplitude and duration of the prolonged potentials, consistently with their neural generation. In some children, however, the ECochG response only consists of the SP, with no prolonged potential. Cochlear implants restore hearing sensitivity, speech perception and neural CAP by electrically stimulating the auditory nerve fibers. These findings indicate that an impaired multivesicular glutamate release in OTOF-related disorders leads to abnormal auditory nerve fiber activation and a consequent impairment of spike generation. The magnitude of these effects seems to vary, ranging from

  13. Interdependence of Linguistic and Indexical Speech Perception Skills in School-Aged Children with Early Cochlear Implantation

    PubMed Central

    Geers, Ann; Davidson, Lisa; Uchanski, Rosalie; Nicholas, Johanna

    2013-01-01

    Objectives This study documented the ability of experienced pediatric cochlear implant (CI) users to perceive linguistic properties (what is said) and indexical attributes (emotional intent and talker identity) of speech, and examined the extent to which linguistic (LSP) and indexical (ISP) perception skills are related. Pre-implant aided hearing, age at implantation, speech processor technology, CI-aided thresholds, sequential bilateral cochlear implantation, and academic integration with hearing age-mates were examined for their possible relationships to both LSP and ISP skills. Design Sixty 9–12 year olds, first implanted at an early age (12–38 months), participated in a comprehensive test battery that included the following LSP skills: 1) recognition of monosyllabic words at loud and soft levels, 2) repetition of phonemes and suprasegmental features from non-words, and 3) recognition of keywords from sentences presented within a noise background, and the following ISP skills: 1) discrimination of male from female and female from female talkers and 2) identification and discrimination of emotional content from spoken sentences. A group of 30 age-matched children without hearing loss completed the non-word repetition, and talker- and emotion-perception tasks for comparison. Results Word recognition scores decreased with signal level from a mean of 77% correct at 70 dB SPL to 52% at 50 dB SPL. On average, CI users recognized 50% of keywords presented in sentences that were 9.8 dB above background noise. Phonetic properties were repeated from non-word stimuli at about the same level of accuracy as suprasegmental attributes (70% and 75%, respectively). The majority of CI users identified emotional content and differentiated talkers significantly above chance levels. Scores on LSP and ISP measures were combined into separate principal component scores and these components were highly correlated (r = .76). Both LSP and ISP component scores were higher for children

  14. Revisiting Neil Armstrongs Moon-Landing Quote: Implications for Speech Perception, Function Word Reduction, and Acoustic Ambiguity.

    PubMed

    Baese-Berk, Melissa M; Dilley, Laura C; Schmidt, Stephanie; Morrill, Tuuli H; Pitt, Mark A

    2016-01-01

    Neil Armstrong insisted that his quote upon landing on the moon was misheard, and that he had said one small step for a man, instead of one small step for man. What he said is unclear in part because function words like a can be reduced and spectrally indistinguishable from the preceding context. Therefore, their presence can be ambiguous, and they may disappear perceptually depending on the rate of surrounding speech. Two experiments are presented examining production and perception of reduced tokens of for and for a in spontaneous speech. Experiment 1 investigates the distributions of several acoustic features of for and for a. The results suggest that the distributions of for and for a overlap substantially, both in terms of temporal and spectral characteristics. Experiment 2 examines perception of these same tokens when the context speaking rate differs. The perceptibility of the function word a varies as a function of this context speaking rate. These results demonstrate that substantial ambiguity exists in the original quote from Armstrong, and that this ambiguity may be understood through context speaking rate. PMID:27603209

  15. Revisiting Neil Armstrongs Moon-Landing Quote: Implications for Speech Perception, Function Word Reduction, and Acoustic Ambiguity

    PubMed Central

    Baese-Berk, Melissa M.; Dilley, Laura C.; Schmidt, Stephanie; Morrill, Tuuli H.; Pitt, Mark A.

    2016-01-01

    Neil Armstrong insisted that his quote upon landing on the moon was misheard, and that he had said one small step for a man, instead of one small step for man. What he said is unclear in part because function words like a can be reduced and spectrally indistinguishable from the preceding context. Therefore, their presence can be ambiguous, and they may disappear perceptually depending on the rate of surrounding speech. Two experiments are presented examining production and perception of reduced tokens of for and for a in spontaneous speech. Experiment 1 investigates the distributions of several acoustic features of for and for a. The results suggest that the distributions of for and for a overlap substantially, both in terms of temporal and spectral characteristics. Experiment 2 examines perception of these same tokens when the context speaking rate differs. The perceptibility of the function word a varies as a function of this context speaking rate. These results demonstrate that substantial ambiguity exists in the original quote from Armstrong, and that this ambiguity may be understood through context speaking rate. PMID:27603209

  16. Revisiting Neil Armstrongs Moon-Landing Quote: Implications for Speech Perception, Function Word Reduction, and Acoustic Ambiguity.

    PubMed

    Baese-Berk, Melissa M; Dilley, Laura C; Schmidt, Stephanie; Morrill, Tuuli H; Pitt, Mark A

    2016-01-01

    Neil Armstrong insisted that his quote upon landing on the moon was misheard, and that he had said one small step for a man, instead of one small step for man. What he said is unclear in part because function words like a can be reduced and spectrally indistinguishable from the preceding context. Therefore, their presence can be ambiguous, and they may disappear perceptually depending on the rate of surrounding speech. Two experiments are presented examining production and perception of reduced tokens of for and for a in spontaneous speech. Experiment 1 investigates the distributions of several acoustic features of for and for a. The results suggest that the distributions of for and for a overlap substantially, both in terms of temporal and spectral characteristics. Experiment 2 examines perception of these same tokens when the context speaking rate differs. The perceptibility of the function word a varies as a function of this context speaking rate. These results demonstrate that substantial ambiguity exists in the original quote from Armstrong, and that this ambiguity may be understood through context speaking rate.

  17. Speech-in-Noise Perception in High-Functioning Individuals with Autism or Asperger's Syndrome

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Alcantara, Jose I.; Weisblatt, Emma J. L.; Moore, Brian C. J.; Bolton, Patrick F.

    2004-01-01

    Background: High-functioning individuals with autism (HFA) or Asperger's syndrome (AS) commonly report difficulties understanding speech in situations where there is background speech or noise. The objective of this study was threefold: (1) to verify the validity of these reports; (2) to quantify the difficulties experienced; and (3) to propose…

  18. The Effect of Hearing Loss on the Perception of Infant- and Adult-Directed Speech

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Robertson, Susie; von Hapsburg, Deborah; Hay, Jessica S.

    2013-01-01

    Purpose: Infant-directed speech (IDS) facilitates language learning in infants with normal hearing, compared to adult-directed speech (ADS). It is well established that infants with normal hearing prefer to listen to IDS over ADS. The purpose of this study was to determine whether infants with hearing impairment (HI), like their NH peers, show a…

  19. Articulatory Mediation of Speech Perception: A Causal Analysis of Multi-Modal Imaging Data

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gow, David W., Jr.; Segawa, Jennifer A.

    2009-01-01

    The inherent confound between the organization of articulation and the acoustic-phonetic structure of the speech signal makes it exceptionally difficult to evaluate the competing claims of motor and acoustic-phonetic accounts of how listeners recognize coarticulated speech. Here we use Granger causation analysis of high spatiotemporal resolution…

  20. Clear Speech Production and Perception of Korean Stops and the Sound Change in Korean Stops

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kang, Kyoung-Ho

    2009-01-01

    The current dissertation investigated clear speech production of Korean stops to examine the proposal that the phonetic targets of phonological categories are more closely approximated in hyperarticulated speech. The investigation also considered a sound change currently underway in Korean stops: younger speakers of the Seoul dialect produce the…

  1. Speech Perception with Music Maskers by Cochlear Implant Users and Normal-Hearing Listeners

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Eskridge, Elizabeth N.; Galvin, John J., III; Aronoff, Justin M.; Li, Tianhao; Fu, Qian-Jie

    2012-01-01

    Purpose: The goal of this study was to investigate how the spectral and temporal properties in background music may interfere with cochlear implant (CI) and normal-hearing listeners' (NH) speech understanding. Method: Speech-recognition thresholds (SRTs) were adaptively measured in 11 CI and 9 NH subjects. CI subjects were tested while using their…

  2. Perceptions of Speech and Language Therapy Amongst UK School and College Students: Implications for Recruitment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Greenwood, Nan; Wright, Jannet A.; Bithell, Christine

    2006-01-01

    Background: Communication disorders affect both sexes and people from all ethnic groups, but members of minority ethnic groups and males in the UK are underrepresented in the speech and language therapy profession. Research in the area of recruitment is limited, but a possible explanation is poor awareness and understanding of speech and language…

  3. A Case Study of Parental Perceptions of Literacy Skill Development for Severe Speech Impairments

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sweat, Karen

    2014-01-01

    Students exhibiting speech deficits may not have the appropriate skills or support structures necessary to obtain adequate or acceptable literacy development as mixed results from past research have indicated that some students with speech impairments have the capacity to gain appropriate literacy skills. The purpose of the qualitative holistic…

  4. Inequality across Consonantal Contrasts in Speech Perception: Evidence from Mismatch Negativity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cornell, Sonia A.; Lahiri, Aditi; Eulitz, Carsten

    2013-01-01

    The precise structure of speech sound representations is still a matter of debate. In the present neurobiological study, we compared predictions about differential sensitivity to speech contrasts between models that assume full specification of all phonological information in the mental lexicon with those assuming sparse representations (only…

  5. Perception of Synthetic and Natural Speech by Adults with Visual Impairments

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Papadopoulos, Konstantinos; Koutsoklenis, Athanasios; Katemidou, Evangelia; Okalidou, Areti

    2009-01-01

    This study investigated the intelligibility and comprehensibility of natural speech in comparison to synthetic speech. The results demonstrate the type of errors; the relationship between intelligibility and comprehensibility; and the correlation between intelligibility and comprehensibility and key factors, such as the frequency of use of…

  6. The Perception of "Sine-Wave Speech" by Adults with Developmental Dyslexia.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rosner, Burton S.; Talcott, Joel B.; Witton, Caroline; Hogg, James D.; Richardson, Alexandra J.; Hansen, Peter C.; Stein, John F.

    2003-01-01

    "Sine-wave speech" sentences contain only four frequency-modulated sine waves, lacking many acoustic cues present in natural speech. Adults with (n=19) and without (n=14) dyslexia were asked to reproduce orally sine-wave utterances in successive trials. Results suggest comprehension of sine-wave sentences is impaired in some adults with dyslexia.…

  7. Word Segmentation and Phonological Learning in Cross-Language Perception of Fluent Speech

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Adams, Tuuli Morrill

    2011-01-01

    Listeners segment words from the continuous speech stream in their native language by using rhythmic structure, phrasal structure, and phonotactics (e.g. Christophe et al, 2003: McQueen, 1998). One challenging aspect of second language acquisition is the extraction of words from fluent speech, possibly because learners apply a native language…

  8. Increased activity in frontal motor cortex compensates impaired speech perception in older adults

    PubMed Central

    Du, Yi; Buchsbaum, Bradley R.; Grady, Cheryl L.; Alain, Claude

    2016-01-01

    Understanding speech in noisy environments is challenging, especially for seniors. Although evidence suggests that older adults increasingly recruit prefrontal cortices to offset reduced periphery and central auditory processing, the brain mechanisms underlying such compensation remain elusive. Here we show that relative to young adults, older adults show higher activation of frontal speech motor areas as measured by functional MRI during a syllable identification task at varying signal-to-noise ratios. This increased activity correlates with improved speech discrimination performance in older adults. Multivoxel pattern classification reveals that despite an overall phoneme dedifferentiation, older adults show greater specificity of phoneme representations in frontal articulatory regions than auditory regions. Moreover, older adults with stronger frontal activity have higher phoneme specificity in frontal and auditory regions. Thus, preserved phoneme specificity and upregulation of activity in speech motor regions provide a means of compensation in older adults for decoding impoverished speech representations in adverse listening conditions. PMID:27483187

  9. Lexical influences on competing speech perception in younger, middle-aged, and older adults.

    PubMed

    Helfer, Karen S; Jesse, Alexandra

    2015-07-01

    The influence of lexical characteristics of words in to-be-attended and to-be-ignored speech streams was examined in a competing speech task. Older, middle-aged, and younger adults heard pairs of low-cloze probability sentences in which the frequency or neighborhood density of words was manipulated in either the target speech stream or the masking speech stream. All participants also completed a battery of cognitive measures. As expected, for all groups, target words that occur frequently or that are from sparse lexical neighborhoods were easier to recognize than words that are infrequent or from dense neighborhoods. Compared to other groups, these neighborhood density effects were largest for older adults; the frequency effect was largest for middle-aged adults. Lexical characteristics of words in the to-be-ignored speech stream also affected recognition of to-be-attended words, but only when overall performance was relatively good (that is, when younger participants listened to the speech streams at a more advantageous signal-to-noise ratio). For these listeners, to-be-ignored masker words from sparse neighborhoods interfered with recognition of target speech more than masker words from dense neighborhoods. Amount of hearing loss and cognitive abilities relating to attentional control modulated overall performance as well as the strength of lexical influences. PMID:26233036

  10. A simulation framework for auditory discrimination experiments: Revealing the importance of across-frequency processing in speech perception.

    PubMed

    Schädler, Marc René; Warzybok, Anna; Ewert, Stephan D; Kollmeier, Birger

    2016-05-01

    A framework for simulating auditory discrimination experiments, based on an approach from Schädler, Warzybok, Hochmuth, and Kollmeier [(2015). Int. J. Audiol. 54, 100-107] which was originally designed to predict speech recognition thresholds, is extended to also predict psychoacoustic thresholds. The proposed framework is used to assess the suitability of different auditory-inspired feature sets for a range of auditory discrimination experiments that included psychoacoustic as well as speech recognition experiments in noise. The considered experiments were 2 kHz tone-in-broadband-noise simultaneous masking depending on the tone length, spectral masking with simultaneously presented tone signals and narrow-band noise maskers, and German Matrix sentence test reception threshold in stationary and modulated noise. The employed feature sets included spectro-temporal Gabor filter bank features, Mel-frequency cepstral coefficients, logarithmically scaled Mel-spectrograms, and the internal representation of the Perception Model from Dau, Kollmeier, and Kohlrausch [(1997). J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 102(5), 2892-2905]. The proposed framework was successfully employed to simulate all experiments with a common parameter set and obtain objective thresholds with less assumptions compared to traditional modeling approaches. Depending on the feature set, the simulated reference-free thresholds were found to agree with-and hence to predict-empirical data from the literature. Across-frequency processing was found to be crucial to accurately model the lower speech reception threshold in modulated noise conditions than in stationary noise conditions.

  11. Music training improves speech-in-noise perception: Longitudinal evidence from a community-based music program.

    PubMed

    Slater, Jessica; Skoe, Erika; Strait, Dana L; O'Connell, Samantha; Thompson, Elaine; Kraus, Nina

    2015-09-15

    Music training may strengthen auditory skills that help children not only in musical performance but in everyday communication. Comparisons of musicians and non-musicians across the lifespan have provided some evidence for a "musician advantage" in understanding speech in noise, although reports have been mixed. Controlled longitudinal studies are essential to disentangle effects of training from pre-existing differences, and to determine how much music training is necessary to confer benefits. We followed a cohort of elementary school children for 2 years, assessing their ability to perceive speech in noise before and after musical training. After the initial assessment, participants were randomly assigned to one of two groups: one group began music training right away and completed 2 years of training, while the second group waited a year and then received 1 year of music training. Outcomes provide the first longitudinal evidence that speech-in-noise perception improves after 2 years of group music training. The children were enrolled in an established and successful community-based music program and followed the standard curriculum, therefore these findings provide an important link between laboratory-based research and real-world assessment of the impact of music training on everyday communication skills.

  12. Music training improves speech-in-noise perception: Longitudinal evidence from a community-based music program.

    PubMed

    Slater, Jessica; Skoe, Erika; Strait, Dana L; O'Connell, Samantha; Thompson, Elaine; Kraus, Nina

    2015-09-15

    Music training may strengthen auditory skills that help children not only in musical performance but in everyday communication. Comparisons of musicians and non-musicians across the lifespan have provided some evidence for a "musician advantage" in understanding speech in noise, although reports have been mixed. Controlled longitudinal studies are essential to disentangle effects of training from pre-existing differences, and to determine how much music training is necessary to confer benefits. We followed a cohort of elementary school children for 2 years, assessing their ability to perceive speech in noise before and after musical training. After the initial assessment, participants were randomly assigned to one of two groups: one group began music training right away and completed 2 years of training, while the second group waited a year and then received 1 year of music training. Outcomes provide the first longitudinal evidence that speech-in-noise perception improves after 2 years of group music training. The children were enrolled in an established and successful community-based music program and followed the standard curriculum, therefore these findings provide an important link between laboratory-based research and real-world assessment of the impact of music training on everyday communication skills. PMID:26005127

  13. A Psychophysical Imaging Method Evidencing Auditory Cue Extraction during Speech Perception: A Group Analysis of Auditory Classification Images

    PubMed Central

    Varnet, Léo; Knoblauch, Kenneth; Serniclaes, Willy; Meunier, Fanny; Hoen, Michel

    2015-01-01

    Although there is a large consensus regarding the involvement of specific acoustic cues in speech perception, the precise mechanisms underlying the transformation from continuous acoustical properties into discrete perceptual units remains undetermined. This gap in knowledge is partially due to the lack of a turnkey solution for isolating critical speech cues from natural stimuli. In this paper, we describe a psychoacoustic imaging method known as the Auditory Classification Image technique that allows experimenters to estimate the relative importance of time-frequency regions in categorizing natural speech utterances in noise. Importantly, this technique enables the testing of hypotheses on the listening strategies of participants at the group level. We exemplify this approach by identifying the acoustic cues involved in da/ga categorization with two phonetic contexts, Al- or Ar-. The application of Auditory Classification Images to our group of 16 participants revealed significant critical regions on the second and third formant onsets, as predicted by the literature, as well as an unexpected temporal cue on the first formant. Finally, through a cluster-based nonparametric test, we demonstrate that this method is sufficiently sensitive to detect fine modifications of the classification strategies between different utterances of the same phoneme. PMID:25781470

  14. A simulation framework for auditory discrimination experiments: Revealing the importance of across-frequency processing in speech perception.

    PubMed

    Schädler, Marc René; Warzybok, Anna; Ewert, Stephan D; Kollmeier, Birger

    2016-05-01

    A framework for simulating auditory discrimination experiments, based on an approach from Schädler, Warzybok, Hochmuth, and Kollmeier [(2015). Int. J. Audiol. 54, 100-107] which was originally designed to predict speech recognition thresholds, is extended to also predict psychoacoustic thresholds. The proposed framework is used to assess the suitability of different auditory-inspired feature sets for a range of auditory discrimination experiments that included psychoacoustic as well as speech recognition experiments in noise. The considered experiments were 2 kHz tone-in-broadband-noise simultaneous masking depending on the tone length, spectral masking with simultaneously presented tone signals and narrow-band noise maskers, and German Matrix sentence test reception threshold in stationary and modulated noise. The employed feature sets included spectro-temporal Gabor filter bank features, Mel-frequency cepstral coefficients, logarithmically scaled Mel-spectrograms, and the internal representation of the Perception Model from Dau, Kollmeier, and Kohlrausch [(1997). J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 102(5), 2892-2905]. The proposed framework was successfully employed to simulate all experiments with a common parameter set and obtain objective thresholds with less assumptions compared to traditional modeling approaches. Depending on the feature set, the simulated reference-free thresholds were found to agree with-and hence to predict-empirical data from the literature. Across-frequency processing was found to be crucial to accurately model the lower speech reception threshold in modulated noise conditions than in stationary noise conditions. PMID:27250164

  15. Impact of second-language experience in infancy: brain measures of first- and second-language speech perception.

    PubMed

    Conboy, Barbara T; Kuhl, Patricia K

    2011-03-01

    Language experience 'narrows' speech perception by the end of infants' first year, reducing discrimination of non-native phoneme contrasts while improving native-contrast discrimination. Previous research showed that declines in non-native discrimination were reversed by second-language experience provided at 9-10 months, but it is not known whether second-language experience affects first-language speech sound processing. Using event-related potentials (ERPs), we examined learning-related changes in brain activity to Spanish and English phoneme contrasts in monolingual English-learning infants pre- and post-exposure to Spanish from 9.5-10.5 months of age. Infants showed a significant discriminatory ERP response to the Spanish contrast at 11 months (post-exposure), but not at 9 months (pre-exposure). The English contrast elicited an earlier discriminatory response at 11 months than at 9 months, suggesting improvement in native-language processing. The results show that infants rapidly encode new phonetic information, and that improvement in native speech processing can occur during second-language learning in infancy.

  16. Bimodal bilingualism as multisensory training?: Evidence for improved audiovisual speech perception after sign language exposure.

    PubMed

    Williams, Joshua T; Darcy, Isabelle; Newman, Sharlene D

    2016-02-15

    The aim of the present study was to characterize effects of learning a sign language on the processing of a spoken language. Specifically, audiovisual phoneme comprehension was assessed before and after 13 weeks of sign language exposure. L2 ASL learners performed this task in the fMRI scanner. Results indicated that L2 American Sign Language (ASL) learners' behavioral classification of the speech sounds improved with time compared to hearing nonsigners. Results indicated increased activation in the supramarginal gyrus (SMG) after sign language exposure, which suggests concomitant increased phonological processing of speech. A multiple regression analysis indicated that learner's rating on co-sign speech use and lipreading ability was correlated with SMG activation. This pattern of results indicates that the increased use of mouthing and possibly lipreading during sign language acquisition may concurrently improve audiovisual speech processing in budding hearing bimodal bilinguals. PMID:26740404

  17. Foreign Subtitles Help but Native-Language Subtitles Harm Foreign Speech Perception

    PubMed Central

    Mitterer, Holger; McQueen, James M.

    2009-01-01

    Understanding foreign speech is difficult, in part because of unusual mappings between sounds and words. It is known that listeners in their native language can use lexical knowledge (about how words ought to sound) to learn how to interpret unusual speech-sounds. We therefore investigated whether subtitles, which provide lexical information, support perceptual learning about foreign speech. Dutch participants, unfamiliar with Scottish and Australian regional accents of English, watched Scottish or Australian English videos with Dutch, English or no subtitles, and then repeated audio fragments of both accents. Repetition of novel fragments was worse after Dutch-subtitle exposure but better after English-subtitle exposure. Native-language subtitles appear to create lexical interference, but foreign-language subtitles assist speech learning by indicating which words (and hence sounds) are being spoken. PMID:19918371

  18. The effect of phonetic production training with visual feedback on the perception and production of foreign speech sounds.

    PubMed

    Kartushina, Natalia; Hervais-Adelman, Alexis; Frauenfelder, Ulrich Hans; Golestani, Narly

    2015-08-01

    Second-language learners often experience major difficulties in producing non-native speech sounds. This paper introduces a training method that uses a real-time analysis of the acoustic properties of vowels produced by non-native speakers to provide them with immediate, trial-by-trial visual feedback about their articulation alongside that of the same vowels produced by native speakers. The Mahalanobis acoustic distance between non-native productions and target native acoustic spaces was used to assess L2 production accuracy. The experiment shows that 1 h of training per vowel improves the production of four non-native Danish vowels: the learners' productions were closer to the corresponding Danish target vowels after training. The production performance of a control group remained unchanged. Comparisons of pre- and post-training vowel discrimination performance in the experimental group showed improvements in perception. Correlational analyses of training-related changes in production and perception revealed no relationship. These results suggest, first, that this training method is effective in improving non-native vowel production. Second, training purely on production improves perception. Finally, it appears that improvements in production and perception do not systematically progress at equal rates within individuals.

  19. The perception of speech modulation cues in lexical tones is guided by early language-specific experience.

    PubMed

    Cabrera, Laurianne; Tsao, Feng-Ming; Liu, Huei-Mei; Li, Lu-Yang; Hu, You-Hsin; Lorenzi, Christian; Bertoncini, Josiane

    2015-01-01

    A number of studies showed that infants reorganize their perception of speech sounds according to their native language categories during their first year of life. Still, information is lacking about the contribution of basic auditory mechanisms to this process. This study aimed to evaluate when native language experience starts to noticeably affect the perceptual processing of basic acoustic cues [i.e., frequency-modulation (FM) and amplitude-modulation information] known to be crucial for speech perception in adults. The discrimination of a lexical-tone contrast (rising versus low) was assessed in 6- and 10-month-old infants learning either French or Mandarin using a visual habituation paradigm. The lexical tones were presented in two conditions designed to either keep intact or to severely degrade the FM and fine spectral cues needed to accurately perceive voice-pitch trajectory. A third condition was designed to assess the discrimination of the same voice-pitch trajectories using click trains containing only the FM cues related to the fundamental-frequency (F0) in French- and Mandarin-learning 10-month-old infants. Results showed that the younger infants of both language groups and the Mandarin-learning 10-month-olds discriminated the intact lexical-tone contrast while French-learning 10-month-olds failed. However, only the French 10-month-olds discriminated degraded lexical tones when FM, and thus voice-pitch cues were reduced. Moreover, Mandarin-learning 10-month-olds were found to discriminate the pitch trajectories as presented in click trains better than French infants. Altogether, these results reveal that the perceptual reorganization occurring during the first year of life for lexical tones is coupled with changes in the auditory ability to use speech modulation cues. PMID:26379605

  20. Sequencing at the syllabic and supra-syllabic levels during speech perception: an fMRI study.

    PubMed

    Deschamps, Isabelle; Tremblay, Pascale

    2014-01-01

    The processing of fluent speech involves complex computational steps that begin with the segmentation of the continuous flow of speech sounds into syllables and words. One question that naturally arises pertains to the type of syllabic information that speech processes act upon. Here, we used functional magnetic resonance imaging to profile regions, using a combination of whole-brain and exploratory anatomical region-of-interest (ROI) approaches, that were sensitive to syllabic information during speech perception by parametrically manipulating syllabic complexity along two dimensions: (1) individual syllable complexity, and (2) sequence complexity (supra-syllabic). We manipulated the complexity of the syllable by using the simplest syllable template-a consonant and vowel (CV)-and inserting an additional consonant to create a complex onset (CCV). The supra-syllabic complexity was manipulated by creating sequences composed of the same syllable repeated six times (e.g., /pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-pa/) and sequences of three different syllables each repeated twice (e.g., /pa-ta-ka-pa-ta-ka/). This parametrical design allowed us to identify brain regions sensitive to (1) syllabic complexity independent of supra-syllabic complexity, (2) supra-syllabic complexity independent of syllabic complexity and, (3) both syllabic and supra-syllabic complexity. High-resolution scans were acquired for 15 healthy adults. An exploratory anatomical ROI analysis of the supratemporal plane (STP) identified bilateral regions within the anterior two-third of the planum temporale, the primary auditory cortices as well as the anterior two-third of the superior temporal gyrus that showed different patterns of sensitivity to syllabic and supra-syllabic information. These findings demonstrate that during passive listening of syllable sequences, sublexical information is processed automatically, and sensitivity to syllabic and supra-syllabic information is localized almost exclusively within the STP.

  1. Temporal Fine-Structure Coding and Lateralized Speech Perception in Normal-Hearing and Hearing-Impaired Listeners.

    PubMed

    Lőcsei, Gusztáv; Pedersen, Julie H; Laugesen, Søren; Santurette, Sébastien; Dau, Torsten; MacDonald, Ewen N

    2016-01-01

    This study investigated the relationship between speech perception performance in spatially complex, lateralized listening scenarios and temporal fine-structure (TFS) coding at low frequencies. Young normal-hearing (NH) and two groups of elderly hearing-impaired (HI) listeners with mild or moderate hearing loss above 1.5 kHz participated in the study. Speech reception thresholds (SRTs) were estimated in the presence of either speech-shaped noise, two-, four-, or eight-talker babble played reversed, or a nonreversed two-talker masker. Target audibility was ensured by applying individualized linear gains to the stimuli, which were presented over headphones. The target and masker streams were lateralized to the same or to opposite sides of the head by introducing 0.7-ms interaural time differences between the ears. TFS coding was assessed by measuring frequency discrimination thresholds and interaural phase difference thresholds at 250 Hz. NH listeners had clearly better SRTs than the HI listeners. However, when maskers were spatially separated from the target, the amount of SRT benefit due to binaural unmasking differed only slightly between the groups. Neither the frequency discrimination threshold nor the interaural phase difference threshold tasks showed a correlation with the SRTs or with the amount of masking release due to binaural unmasking, respectively. The results suggest that, although HI listeners with normal hearing thresholds below 1.5 kHz experienced difficulties with speech understanding in spatially complex environments, these limitations were unrelated to TFS coding abilities and were only weakly associated with a reduction in binaural-unmasking benefit for spatially separated competing sources. PMID:27601071

  2. Temporal Fine-Structure Coding and Lateralized Speech Perception in Normal-Hearing and Hearing-Impaired Listeners

    PubMed Central

    Pedersen, Julie H.; Laugesen, Søren; Santurette, Sébastien; Dau, Torsten; MacDonald, Ewen N.

    2016-01-01

    This study investigated the relationship between speech perception performance in spatially complex, lateralized listening scenarios and temporal fine-structure (TFS) coding at low frequencies. Young normal-hearing (NH) and two groups of elderly hearing-impaired (HI) listeners with mild or moderate hearing loss above 1.5 kHz participated in the study. Speech reception thresholds (SRTs) were estimated in the presence of either speech-shaped noise, two-, four-, or eight-talker babble played reversed, or a nonreversed two-talker masker. Target audibility was ensured by applying individualized linear gains to the stimuli, which were presented over headphones. The target and masker streams were lateralized to the same or to opposite sides of the head by introducing 0.7-ms interaural time differences between the ears. TFS coding was assessed by measuring frequency discrimination thresholds and interaural phase difference thresholds at 250 Hz. NH listeners had clearly better SRTs than the HI listeners. However, when maskers were spatially separated from the target, the amount of SRT benefit due to binaural unmasking differed only slightly between the groups. Neither the frequency discrimination threshold nor the interaural phase difference threshold tasks showed a correlation with the SRTs or with the amount of masking release due to binaural unmasking, respectively. The results suggest that, although HI listeners with normal hearing thresholds below 1.5 kHz experienced difficulties with speech understanding in spatially complex environments, these limitations were unrelated to TFS coding abilities and were only weakly associated with a reduction in binaural-unmasking benefit for spatially separated competing sources. PMID:27601071

  3. Speech Research

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Several articles addressing topics in speech research are presented. The topics include: exploring the functional significance of physiological tremor: A biospectroscopic approach; differences between experienced and inexperienced listeners to deaf speech; a language-oriented view of reading and its disabilities; Phonetic factors in letter detection; categorical perception; Short-term recall by deaf signers of American sign language; a common basis for auditory sensory storage in perception and immediate memory; phonological awareness and verbal short-term memory; initiation versus execution time during manual and oral counting by stutterers; trading relations in the perception of speech by five-year-old children; the role of the strap muscles in pitch lowering; phonetic validation of distinctive features; consonants and syllable boundaires; and vowel information in postvocalic frictions.

  4. The Effect of Short-Term Auditory Training on Speech in Noise Perception and Cortical Auditory Evoked Potentials in Adults with Cochlear Implants.

    PubMed

    Barlow, Nathan; Purdy, Suzanne C; Sharma, Mridula; Giles, Ellen; Narne, Vijay

    2016-02-01

    This study investigated whether a short intensive psychophysical auditory training program is associated with speech perception benefits and changes in cortical auditory evoked potentials (CAEPs) in adult cochlear implant (CI) users. Ten adult implant recipients trained approximately 7 hours on psychophysical tasks (Gap-in-Noise Detection, Frequency Discrimination, Spectral Rippled Noise [SRN], Iterated Rippled Noise, Temporal Modulation). Speech performance was assessed before and after training using Lexical Neighborhood Test (LNT) words in quiet and in eight-speaker babble. CAEPs evoked by a natural speech stimulus /baba/ with varying syllable stress were assessed pre- and post-training, in quiet and in noise. SRN psychophysical thresholds showed a significant improvement (78% on average) over the training period, but performance on other psychophysical tasks did not change. LNT scores in noise improved significantly post-training by 11% on average compared with three pretraining baseline measures. N1P2 amplitude changed post-training for /baba/ in quiet (p = 0.005, visit 3 pretraining versus visit 4 post-training). CAEP changes did not correlate with behavioral measures. CI recipients' clinical records indicated a plateau in speech perception performance prior to participation in the study. A short period of intensive psychophysical training produced small but significant gains in speech perception in noise and spectral discrimination ability. There remain questions about the most appropriate type of training and the duration or dosage of training that provides the most robust outcomes for adults with CIs. PMID:27587925

  5. Perceptual consequences of normal and abnormal peripheral compression: Potential links between psychoacoustics and speech perception

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oxenham, Andrew J.; Rosengard, Peninah S.; Braida, Louis D.

    2001-05-01

    Cochlear damage can lead to a reduction in the overall amount of peripheral auditory compression, presumably due to outer hair cell (OHC) loss or dysfunction. The perceptual consequences of functional OHC loss include loudness recruitment and reduced dynamic range, poorer frequency selectivity, and poorer effective temporal resolution. These in turn may lead to a reduced ability to make use of spectral and temporal fluctuations in background noise when listening to a target sound, such as speech. We tested the effect of OHC function on speech reception in hearing-impaired listeners by comparing psychoacoustic measures of cochlear compression and sentence recognition in a variety of noise backgrounds. In line with earlier studies, we found weak (nonsignificant) correlations between the psychoacoustic tasks and speech reception thresholds in quiet or in steady-state noise. However, when spectral and temporal fluctuations were introduced in the masker, speech reception improved to an extent that was well predicted by the psychoacoustic measures. Thus, our initial results suggest a strong relationship between measures of cochlear compression and the ability of listeners to take advantage of spectral and temporal masker fluctuations in recognizing speech. [Work supported by NIH Grants Nos. R01DC03909, T32DC00038, and R01DC00117.

  6. Speech perception of sine-wave signals by children with cochlear implants

    PubMed Central

    Nittrouer, Susan; Kuess, Jamie; Lowenstein, Joanna H.

    2015-01-01

    Children need to discover linguistically meaningful structures in the acoustic speech signal. Being attentive to recurring, time-varying formant patterns helps in that process. However, that kind of acoustic structure may not be available to children with cochlear implants (CIs), thus hindering development. The major goal of this study was to examine whether children with CIs are as sensitive to time-varying formant structure as children with normal hearing (NH) by asking them to recognize sine-wave speech. The same materials were presented as speech in noise, as well, to evaluate whether any group differences might simply reflect general perceptual deficits on the part of children with CIs. Vocabulary knowledge, phonemic awareness, and “top-down” language effects were all also assessed. Finally, treatment factors were examined as possible predictors of outcomes. Results showed that children with CIs were as accurate as children with NH at recognizing sine-wave speech, but poorer at recognizing speech in noise. Phonemic awareness was related to that recognition. Top-down effects were similar across groups. Having had a period of bimodal stimulation near the time of receiving a first CI facilitated these effects. Results suggest that children with CIs have access to the important time-varying structure of vocal-tract formants. PMID:25994709

  7. Tone classification of syllable-segmented Thai speech based on multilayer perception

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Satravaha, Nuttavudh; Klinkhachorn, Powsiri; Lass, Norman

    2002-05-01

    Thai is a monosyllabic tonal language that uses tone to convey lexical information about the meaning of a syllable. Thus to completely recognize a spoken Thai syllable, a speech recognition system not only has to recognize a base syllable but also must correctly identify a tone. Hence, tone classification of Thai speech is an essential part of a Thai speech recognition system. Thai has five distinctive tones (``mid,'' ``low,'' ``falling,'' ``high,'' and ``rising'') and each tone is represented by a single fundamental frequency (F0) pattern. However, several factors, including tonal coarticulation, stress, intonation, and speaker variability, affect the F0 pattern of a syllable in continuous Thai speech. In this study, an efficient method for tone classification of syllable-segmented Thai speech, which incorporates the effects of tonal coarticulation, stress, and intonation, as well as a method to perform automatic syllable segmentation, were developed. Acoustic parameters were used as the main discriminating parameters. The F0 contour of a segmented syllable was normalized by using a z-score transformation before being presented to a tone classifier. The proposed system was evaluated on 920 test utterances spoken by 8 speakers. A recognition rate of 91.36% was achieved by the proposed system.

  8. Gated Auditory Speech Perception in Elderly Hearing Aid Users and Elderly Normal-Hearing Individuals: Effects of Hearing Impairment and Cognitive Capacity

    PubMed Central

    Lidestam, Björn; Hällgren, Mathias; Rönnberg, Jerker

    2014-01-01

    This study compared elderly hearing aid (EHA) users and elderly normal-hearing (ENH) individuals on identification of auditory speech stimuli (consonants, words, and final word in sentences) that were different when considering their linguistic properties. We measured the accuracy with which the target speech stimuli were identified, as well as the isolation points (IPs: the shortest duration, from onset, required to correctly identify the speech target). The relationships between working memory capacity, the IPs, and speech accuracy were also measured. Twenty-four EHA users (with mild to moderate hearing impairment) and 24 ENH individuals participated in the present study. Despite the use of their regular hearing aids, the EHA users had delayed IPs and were less accurate in identifying consonants and words compared with the ENH individuals. The EHA users also had delayed IPs for final word identification in sentences with lower predictability; however, no significant between-group difference in accuracy was observed. Finally, there were no significant between-group differences in terms of IPs or accuracy for final word identification in highly predictable sentences. Our results also showed that, among EHA users, greater working memory capacity was associated with earlier IPs and improved accuracy in consonant and word identification. Together, our findings demonstrate that the gated speech perception ability of EHA users was not at the level of ENH individuals, in terms of IPs and accuracy. In addition, gated speech perception was more cognitively demanding for EHA users than for ENH individuals in the absence of semantic context. PMID:25085610

  9. Gated auditory speech perception in elderly hearing aid users and elderly normal-hearing individuals: effects of hearing impairment and cognitive capacity.

    PubMed

    Moradi, Shahram; Lidestam, Björn; Hällgren, Mathias; Rönnberg, Jerker

    2014-01-01

    This study compared elderly hearing aid (EHA) users and elderly normal-hearing (ENH) individuals on identification of auditory speech stimuli (consonants, words, and final word in sentences) that were different when considering their linguistic properties. We measured the accuracy with which the target speech stimuli were identified, as well as the isolation points (IPs: the shortest duration, from onset, required to correctly identify the speech target). The relationships between working memory capacity, the IPs, and speech accuracy were also measured. Twenty-four EHA users (with mild to moderate hearing impairment) and 24 ENH individuals participated in the present study. Despite the use of their regular hearing aids, the EHA users had delayed IPs and were less accurate in identifying consonants and words compared with the ENH individuals. The EHA users also had delayed IPs for final word identification in sentences with lower predictability; however, no significant between-group difference in accuracy was observed. Finally, there were no significant between-group differences in terms of IPs or accuracy for final word identification in highly predictable sentences. Our results also showed that, among EHA users, greater working memory capacity was associated with earlier IPs and improved accuracy in consonant and word identification. Together, our findings demonstrate that the gated speech perception ability of EHA users was not at the level of ENH individuals, in terms of IPs and accuracy. In addition, gated speech perception was more cognitively demanding for EHA users than for ENH individuals in the absence of semantic context. PMID:25085610

  10. The Influence of Visual and Auditory Information on the Perception of Speech and Non-Speech Oral Movements in Patients with Left Hemisphere Lesions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schmid, Gabriele; Thielmann, Anke; Ziegler, Wolfram

    2009-01-01

    Patients with lesions of the left hemisphere often suffer from oral-facial apraxia, apraxia of speech, and aphasia. In these patients, visual features often play a critical role in speech and language therapy, when pictured lip shapes or the therapist's visible mouth movements are used to facilitate speech production and articulation. This demands…

  11. Perception of basic emotions from speech prosody in adolescents with Asperger's syndrome.

    PubMed

    Heikkinen, Jenna; Jansson-Verkasalo, Eira; Toivanen, Juhani; Suominen, Kalervo; Väyrynen, Eero; Moilanen, Irma; Seppänen, Tapio

    2010-10-01

    Asperger's syndrome (AS) belongs to the group of autism spectrum disorders and is characterized by deficits in social interaction, as manifested e.g. by the lack of social or emotional reciprocity. The disturbance causes clinically significant impairment in social interaction. Abnormal prosody has been frequently identified as a core feature of AS. There are virtually no studies on recognition of basic emotions from speech. This study focuses on how adolescents with AS (n=12) and their typically developed controls (n=15) recognize the basic emotions happy, sad, angry, and 'neutral' from speech prosody. Adolescents with AS recognized basic emotions from speech prosody as well as their typically developed controls did. Possibly the recognition of basic emotions develops during the childhood.

  12. Non-flat audiograms in sensorineural hearing loss and speech perception

    PubMed Central

    de Andrade, Kelly Cristina Lira; de Lemos Menezes, Pedro; Carnaúba, Aline Tenório Lins; de Sousa Rodrigues, Renato Glauco; de Carvalho Leal, Mariana; Pereira, Liliane Desgualdo

    2013-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: The audibility thresholds for the sound frequency of 137 upward- and downward-sloping audiograms showing sensorineural hearing loss were selected and analyzed in conjunction with speech recognition thresholds obtained from individuals seen at a public otolaryngology clinic to determine which frequencies in slope audiograms best represent speech recognition thresholds. METHOD: The linear regression model and mean square error were used to determine the associations between the threshold values. RESULT: The mean square error identified larger errors when using thresholds of 500, 1000, and 2000 Hz than when using audibility thresholds of 500, 1000, 2000, and 4000 Hz. The linear regression model showed a higher correlation (91%) between the audiogram thresholds for frequencies of 500, 1000, 2000, and 4000 Hz than for the frequencies of 500, 1000, and 2000 Hz (88%). CONCLUSION: Frequencies of 500, 1000, 2000, and 4000 Hz were the most significant in predicting the speech recognition threshold. PMID:23778471

  13. An assessment of computer model techniques to predict quantitative and qualitative measures of speech perception in university classrooms for varying room sizes and noise levels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Hyeong-Seok

    The objective of this dissertation was to assess the use of computer modeling techniques to predict quantitative and qualitative measures of speech perception in classrooms under realistic conditions of background noise and reverberation. Secondary objectives included (1) finding relationships among acoustical measurements made in actual classrooms and in the computer models of the actual rooms as a prediction tool of 15 acoustic parameters at the design stage of projects and (2) finding relationships among speech perception scores and 15 acoustic parameters to determine the best predictors of speech perception in actual classroom conditions. Fifteen types of acoustical measurements were made in three actual classrooms with reverberation times of 0.5, 1.3, and 5.1 seconds. Speech perception tests using a Modified Rhyme Test list were also given to 22 subject in each room with five noise conditions of signal-to-noise ratios of 31, 24, 15, 0, -10. Computer models of the rooms were constructed using a commercially available computer model software program. The 15 acoustical measurements were made at 6 or 9 locations in the model rooms. Impulse responses obtained in the computer models of the rooms were convolved with the anechoically recorded speech tests used in the full size rooms to produce a compact disk with the MRT lists with the acoustical response of the computer model rooms. Speech perception tests using this as source material were given to the subjects over loudspeaker in an acoustic test booth. The results of the study showed correlations (R2) of between acoustical measures made in the full size classrooms and the computer models of the classrooms of 0.92 to 0.99 with standard errors of 0.033 to 7.311. Comparisons between speech perception scores tested in the rooms and acoustical measurements made in the rooms and in the computer models of the classrooms showed that the measures have similar prediction accuracy with other studies in the literatures. The

  14. Effective Connectivity Hierarchically Links Temporoparietal and Frontal Areas of the Auditory Dorsal Stream with the Motor Cortex Lip Area during Speech Perception

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Murakami, Takenobu; Restle, Julia; Ziemann, Ulf

    2012-01-01

    A left-hemispheric cortico-cortical network involving areas of the temporoparietal junction (Tpj) and the posterior inferior frontal gyrus (pIFG) is thought to support sensorimotor integration of speech perception into articulatory motor activation, but how this network links with the lip area of the primary motor cortex (M1) during speech…

  15. An On-Line Imitative Test of Speech-Pattern Contrast Perception (OlimSpac): Developmental Effects in Normally Hearing Children

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Boothroyd, Arthur; Eisenberg, Laurie S.; Martinez, Amy S.

    2010-01-01

    Purpose: The goal was to assess the effects of maturation and phonological development on performance, by normally hearing children, on an imitative test of auditory capacity (On-Line Imitative Test of Speech-Pattern Contrast Perception [OlimSpac]; Boothroyd, Eisenberg, & Martinez, 2006; Eisenberg, Martinez, & Boothroyd, 2003, 2007). Method:…

  16. The Acquisitional Value of Recasts in Instructed Second Language Speech Learning: Teaching the Perception and Production of English /?/ to Adult Japanese Learners

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Saito, Kazuya

    2013-01-01

    The current study investigated the impact of recasts together with form-focused instruction (FFI) on the development of second language speech perception and production of English /?/ by Japanese learners. Forty-five learners were randomly assigned to three groups--FFI recasts, FFI only, and Control--and exposed to four hours of communicatively…

  17. Top-Down Modulation on the Perception and Categorization of Identical Pitch Contours in Speech and Music.

    PubMed

    Weidema, Joey L; Roncaglia-Denissen, M P; Honing, Henkjan

    2016-01-01

    Whether pitch in language and music is governed by domain-specific or domain-general cognitive mechanisms is contentiously debated. The aim of the present study was to investigate whether mechanisms governing pitch contour perception operate differently when pitch information is interpreted as either speech or music. By modulating listening mode, this study aspired to demonstrate that pitch contour perception relies on domain-specific cognitive mechanisms, which are regulated by top-down influences from language and music. Three groups of participants (Mandarin speakers, Dutch speaking non-musicians, and Dutch musicians) were exposed to identical pitch contours, and tested on their ability to identify these contours in a language and musical context. Stimuli consisted of disyllabic words spoken in Mandarin, and melodic tonal analogs, embedded in a linguistic and melodic carrier phrase, respectively. Participants classified identical pitch contours as significantly different depending on listening mode. Top-down influences from language appeared to alter the perception of pitch contour in speakers of Mandarin. This was not the case for non-musician speakers of Dutch. Moreover, this effect was lacking in Dutch speaking musicians. The classification patterns of pitch contours in language and music seem to suggest that domain-specific categorization is modulated by top-down influences from language and music. PMID:27313552

  18. Top-Down Modulation on the Perception and Categorization of Identical Pitch Contours in Speech and Music.

    PubMed

    Weidema, Joey L; Roncaglia-Denissen, M P; Honing, Henkjan

    2016-01-01

    Whether pitch in language and music is governed by domain-specific or domain-general cognitive mechanisms is contentiously debated. The aim of the present study was to investigate whether mechanisms governing pitch contour perception operate differently when pitch information is interpreted as either speech or music. By modulating listening mode, this study aspired to demonstrate that pitch contour perception relies on domain-specific cognitive mechanisms, which are regulated by top-down influences from language and music. Three groups of participants (Mandarin speakers, Dutch speaking non-musicians, and Dutch musicians) were exposed to identical pitch contours, and tested on their ability to identify these contours in a language and musical context. Stimuli consisted of disyllabic words spoken in Mandarin, and melodic tonal analogs, embedded in a linguistic and melodic carrier phrase, respectively. Participants classified identical pitch contours as significantly different depending on listening mode. Top-down influences from language appeared to alter the perception of pitch contour in speakers of Mandarin. This was not the case for non-musician speakers of Dutch. Moreover, this effect was lacking in Dutch speaking musicians. The classification patterns of pitch contours in language and music seem to suggest that domain-specific categorization is modulated by top-down influences from language and music.

  19. Top–Down Modulation on the Perception and Categorization of Identical Pitch Contours in Speech and Music

    PubMed Central

    Weidema, Joey L.; Roncaglia-Denissen, M. P.; Honing, Henkjan

    2016-01-01

    Whether pitch in language and music is governed by domain-specific or domain-general cognitive mechanisms is contentiously debated. The aim of the present study was to investigate whether mechanisms governing pitch contour perception operate differently when pitch information is interpreted as either speech or music. By modulating listening mode, this study aspired to demonstrate that pitch contour perception relies on domain-specific cognitive mechanisms, which are regulated by top–down influences from language and music. Three groups of participants (Mandarin speakers, Dutch speaking non-musicians, and Dutch musicians) were exposed to identical pitch contours, and tested on their ability to identify these contours in a language and musical context. Stimuli consisted of disyllabic words spoken in Mandarin, and melodic tonal analogs, embedded in a linguistic and melodic carrier phrase, respectively. Participants classified identical pitch contours as significantly different depending on listening mode. Top–down influences from language appeared to alter the perception of pitch contour in speakers of Mandarin. This was not the case for non-musician speakers of Dutch. Moreover, this effect was lacking in Dutch speaking musicians. The classification patterns of pitch contours in language and music seem to suggest that domain-specific categorization is modulated by top–down influences from language and music. PMID:27313552

  20. The Impact of Strong Assimilation on the Perception of Connected Speech

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gaskell, M. Gareth; Snoeren, Natalie D.

    2008-01-01

    Models of compensation for phonological variation in spoken word recognition differ in their ability to accommodate complete assimilatory alternations (such as run assimilating fully to rum in the context of a quick run picks you up). Two experiments addressed whether such complete changes can be observed in casual speech, and if so, whether they…

  1. Cognitive Compensation of Speech Perception With Hearing Impairment, Cochlear Implants, and Aging

    PubMed Central

    Clarke, Jeanne; Pals, Carina; Benard, Michel R.; Bhargava, Pranesh; Saija, Jefta; Sarampalis, Anastasios; Wagner, Anita; Gaudrain, Etienne

    2016-01-01

    External degradations in incoming speech reduce understanding, and hearing impairment further compounds the problem. While cognitive mechanisms alleviate some of the difficulties, their effectiveness may change with age. In our research, reviewed here, we investigated cognitive compensation with hearing impairment, cochlear implants, and aging, via (a) phonemic restoration as a measure of top-down filling of missing speech, (b) listening effort and response times as a measure of increased cognitive processing, and (c) visual world paradigm and eye gazing as a measure of the use of context and its time course. Our results indicate that between speech degradations and their cognitive compensation, there is a fine balance that seems to vary greatly across individuals. Hearing impairment or inadequate hearing device settings may limit compensation benefits. Cochlear implants seem to allow the effective use of sentential context, but likely at the cost of delayed processing. Linguistic and lexical knowledge, which play an important role in compensation, may be successfully employed in advanced age, as some compensatory mechanisms seem to be preserved. These findings indicate that cognitive compensation in hearing impairment can be highly complicated—not always absent, but also not easily predicted by speech intelligibility tests only.

  2. Native Speakers' Perceptions of Fluency and Accent in L2 Speech

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pinget, Anne-France; Bosker, Hans Rutger; Quené, Hugo; de Jong, Nivja H.

    2014-01-01

    Oral fluency and foreign accent distinguish L2 from L1 speech production. In language testing practices, both fluency and accent are usually assessed by raters. This study investigates what exactly native raters of fluency and accent take into account when judging L2. Our aim is to explore the relationship between objectively measured temporal,…

  3. Listening with an Accent: Speech Perception in a Second Language by Late Bilinguals

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Leikin, Mark; Ibrahim, Raphiq; Eviatar, Zohar; Sapir, Shimon

    2009-01-01

    The goal of the present study was to examine functioning of late bilinguals in their second language. Specifically, we asked how native and non-native Hebrew speaking listeners perceive accented and native-accented Hebrew speech. To achieve this goal we used the gating paradigm to explore the ability of healthy late fluent bilinguals (Russian and…

  4. The Effect of Temporal Gap Identification on Speech Perception by Users of Cochlear Implants

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sagi, Elad; Kaiser, Adam R.; Meyer, Ted A.; Svirsky, Mario A.

    2009-01-01

    Purpose: This study examined the ability of listeners using cochlear implants (CIs) and listeners with normal hearing (NH) to identify silent gaps of different duration and the relation of this ability to speech understanding in CI users. Method: Sixteen NH adults and 11 postlingually deafened adults with CIs identified synthetic vowel-like…

  5. Impact of Aberrant Acoustic Properties on the Perception of Sound Quality in Electrolarynx Speech

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Meltzner, Geoffrey S.; Hillman, Robert E.

    2005-01-01

    A large percentage of patients who have undergone laryngectomy to treat advanced laryngeal cancer rely on an electrolarynx (EL) to communicate verbally. Although serviceable, EL speech is plagued by shortcomings in both sound quality and intelligibility. This study sought to better quantify the relative contributions of previously identified…

  6. Brief Report: Arrested Development of Audiovisual Speech Perception in Autism Spectrum Disorders

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stevenson, Ryan A.; Siemann, Justin K.; Woynaroski, Tiffany G.; Schneider, Brittany C.; Eberly, Haley E.; Camarata, Stephen M.; Wallace, Mark T.

    2014-01-01

    Atypical communicative abilities are a core marker of Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). A number of studies have shown that, in addition to auditory comprehension differences, individuals with autism frequently show atypical responses to audiovisual speech, suggesting a multisensory contribution to these communicative differences from their…

  7. Speech Perception and Production by Sequential Bilingual Children: A Longitudinal Study of Voice Onset Time Acquisition

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McCarthy, Kathleen M.; Mahon, Merle; Rosen, Stuart; Evans, Bronwen G.

    2014-01-01

    The majority of bilingual speech research has focused on simultaneous bilinguals. Yet, in immigrant communities, children are often initially exposed to their family language (L1), before becoming gradually immersed in the host country's language (L2). This is typically referred to as sequential bilingualism. Using a longitudinal design, this…

  8. Liberated Learning: Analysis of University Students' Perceptions and Experiences with Continuous Automated Speech Recognition

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ryba, Ken; McIvor, Tom; Shakir, Maha; Paez, Di

    2006-01-01

    This study examined continuous automated speech recognition in the university lecture theatre. The participants were both native speakers of English (L1) and English as a second language students (L2) enrolled in an information systems course (Total N=160). After an initial training period, an L2 lecturer in information systems delivered three…

  9. Parents' and Professionals' Perceptions of Quality of Life in Children with Speech and Language Difficulty

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Markham, Chris; Dean, Taraneh

    2006-01-01

    The true impact of speech and language difficulties (SaLD) on children's lives and the effectiveness of intervention is unknown. Within other fields of paediatric healthcare, clinicians and policy-makers are increasingly emphasizing the utility of Health-Related Quality of Life (HRQoL) studies and measures. SaLT has a variety of measures to assess…

  10. Perception of Foreign Accent Syndrome Speech and Its Relation to Segmental Characteristics

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dankovicova, Jana; Hunt, Claire

    2011-01-01

    Foreign accent syndrome (FAS) is an acquired neurogenic disorder characterized by altered speech that sounds foreign-accented. This study presents a British subject perceived to speak with an Italian (or Greek) accent after a brainstem (pontine) stroke. Native English listeners rated the strength of foreign accent and impairment they perceived in…

  11. Familiarity Breeds Support: Speech-Language Pathologists' Perceptions of Bullying of Students with Autism Spectrum Disorders

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Blood, Gordon W.; Blood, Ingrid M.; Coniglio, Amy D.; Finke, Erinn H.; Boyle, Michael P.

    2013-01-01

    Children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) are primary targets for bullies and victimization. Research shows school personnel may be uneducated about bullying and ways to intervene. Speech-language pathologists (SLPs) in schools often work with children with ASD and may have victims of bullying on their caseloads. These victims may feel most…

  12. Perceptions of Staff on Embedding Speech and Language Therapy within a Youth Offending Team

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bryan, Karen; Gregory, Juliette

    2013-01-01

    The purpose of this research was to ascertain the views of staff and managers within a youth offending team on their experiences of working with a speech and language therapist (SLT). The model of therapy provision was similar to the whole-systems approach used in schools. The impact of the service on language outcomes is reported elsewhere…

  13. Functional neuroimaging of speech perception during a pivotal period in language acquisition.

    PubMed

    Redcay, Elizabeth; Haist, Frank; Courchesne, Eric

    2008-03-01

    A pivotal period in the development of language occurs in the second year of life, when language comprehension undergoes rapid acceleration. However, the brain bases of these advances remain speculative as there is currently no functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) data from healthy, typically developing toddlers at this age. We investigated the neural basis of speech comprehension in this critical age period by measuring fMRI activity during passive speech comprehension in 10 toddlers (mean +/- SD; 21 +/- 4 mo) and 10 3-year-old children (39 +/- 3 mo) during natural sleep. During sleep, the children were presented passages of forward and backward speech in 20-second blocks separated by 20-second periods of no sound presentation. Toddlers produced significantly greater activation in frontal, occipital, and cerebellar regions than 3-year-old children in response to forward speech. Our results suggest that rapid language acquisition during the second year of life may require the utilization of frontal, cerebellar, and occipital regions in addition to classical superior temporal language areas. These findings are consistent with the interactive specialization hypothesis, which proposes that cognitive abilities develop from the interaction of brain regions that include and extend beyond those used in the adult brain.

  14. Compensation for Complete Assimilation in Speech Perception: The Case of Korean Labial-to-Velar Assimilation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mitterer, Holger; Kim, Sahyang; Cho, Taehong

    2013-01-01

    In connected speech, phonological assimilation to neighboring words can lead to pronunciation variants (e.g., "garden bench" [arrow right] "garde'm' bench"). A large body of literature suggests that listeners use the phonetic context to reconstruct the intended word for assimilation types that often lead to incomplete assimilations (e.g., a…

  15. The Effect of Talker and Intonation Variability on Speech Perception in Noise in Children with Dyslexia

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hazan, Valerie; Messaoud-Galusi, Souhila; Rosen, Stuart

    2013-01-01

    Purpose: In this study, the authors aimed to determine whether children with dyslexia (hereafter referred to as "DYS children") are more affected than children with average reading ability (hereafter referred to as "AR children") by talker and intonation variability when perceiving speech in noise. Method: Thirty-four DYS and 25 AR children were…

  16. Perception of Speech Modulation Cues by 6-Month-Old Infants

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cabrera, Laurianne; Bertoncini, Josiane; Lorenzi, Christian

    2013-01-01

    Purpose: The capacity of 6-month-old infants to discriminate a voicing contrast (/aba/--/apa/) on the basis of "amplitude modulation (AM) cues" and "frequency modulation (FM) cues" was evaluated. Method: Several vocoded speech conditions were designed to either degrade FM cues in 4 or 32 bands or degrade AM in 32 bands. Infants…

  17. Universal and language-specific sublexical cues in speech perception: a novel electroencephalography-lesion approach.

    PubMed

    Obrig, Hellmuth; Mentzel, Julia; Rossi, Sonja

    2016-06-01

    SEE CAPPA DOI101093/BRAIN/AWW090 FOR A SCIENTIFIC COMMENTARY ON THIS ARTICLE  : The phonological structure of speech supports the highly automatic mapping of sound to meaning. While it is uncontroversial that phonotactic knowledge acts upon lexical access, it is unclear at what stage these combinatorial rules, governing phonological well-formedness in a given language, shape speech comprehension. Moreover few studies have investigated the neuronal network affording this important step in speech comprehension. Therefore we asked 70 participants-half of whom suffered from a chronic left hemispheric lesion-to listen to 252 different monosyllabic pseudowords. The material models universal preferences of phonotactic well-formedness by including naturally spoken pseudowords and digitally reversed exemplars. The latter partially violate phonological structure of all human speech and are rich in universally dispreferred phoneme sequences while preserving basic auditory parameters. Language-specific constraints were modelled in that half of the naturally spoken pseudowords complied with the phonotactics of the native language of the monolingual participants (German) while the other half did not. To ensure universal well-formedness and naturalness, the latter stimuli comply with Slovak phonotactics and all stimuli were produced by an early bilingual speaker. To maximally attenuate lexico-semantic influences, transparent pseudowords were avoided and participants had to detect immediate repetitions, a task orthogonal to the contrasts of interest. The results show that phonological 'well-formedness' modulates implicit processing of speech at different levels: universally dispreferred phonological structure elicits early, medium and late latency differences in the evoked potential. On the contrary, the language-specific phonotactic contrast selectively modulates a medium latency component of the event-related potentials around 400 ms. Using a novel event-related potential

  18. Speech Perception by 6- to 8-Month-Olds in the Presence of Distracting Sounds

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Polka, Linda; Rvachew, Susan; Molnar, Monika

    2008-01-01

    The role of selective attention in infant phonetic perception was examined using a distraction masker paradigm. We compared perception of /bu/ versus /gu/ in 6- to 8-month-olds using a visual fixation procedure. Infants were habituated to multiple natural productions of 1 syllable type and then presented 4 test trials (old-new-old-new). Perception…

  19. Perception of Filtered Speech by Children with Developmental Dyslexia and Children with Specific Language Impairments.

    PubMed

    Goswami, Usha; Cumming, Ruth; Chait, Maria; Huss, Martina; Mead, Natasha; Wilson, Angela M; Barnes, Lisa; Fosker, Tim

    2016-01-01

    Here we use two filtered speech tasks to investigate children's processing of slow (<4 Hz) versus faster (∼33 Hz) temporal modulations in speech. We compare groups of children with either developmental dyslexia (Experiment 1) or speech and language impairments (SLIs, Experiment 2) to groups of typically-developing (TD) children age-matched to each disorder group. Ten nursery rhymes were filtered so that their modulation frequencies were either low-pass filtered (<4 Hz) or band-pass filtered (22 - 40 Hz). Recognition of the filtered nursery rhymes was tested in a picture recognition multiple choice paradigm. Children with dyslexia aged 10 years showed equivalent recognition overall to TD controls for both the low-pass and band-pass filtered stimuli, but showed significantly impaired acoustic learning during the experiment from low-pass filtered targets. Children with oral SLIs aged 9 years showed significantly poorer recognition of band pass filtered targets compared to their TD controls, and showed comparable acoustic learning effects to TD children during the experiment. The SLI samples were also divided into children with and without phonological difficulties. The children with both SLI and phonological difficulties were impaired in recognizing both kinds of filtered speech. These data are suggestive of impaired temporal sampling of the speech signal at different modulation rates by children with different kinds of developmental language disorder. Both SLI and dyslexic samples showed impaired discrimination of amplitude rise times. Implications of these findings for a temporal sampling framework for understanding developmental language disorders are discussed. PMID:27303348

  20. Perception of Filtered Speech by Children with Developmental Dyslexia and Children with Specific Language Impairments

    PubMed Central

    Goswami, Usha; Cumming, Ruth; Chait, Maria; Huss, Martina; Mead, Natasha; Wilson, Angela M.; Barnes, Lisa; Fosker, Tim

    2016-01-01

    Here we use two filtered speech tasks to investigate children’s processing of slow (<4 Hz) versus faster (∼33 Hz) temporal modulations in speech. We compare groups of children with either developmental dyslexia (Experiment 1) or speech and language impairments (SLIs, Experiment 2) to groups of typically-developing (TD) children age-matched to each disorder group. Ten nursery rhymes were filtered so that their modulation frequencies were either low-pass filtered (<4 Hz) or band-pass filtered (22 – 40 Hz). Recognition of the filtered nursery rhymes was tested in a picture recognition multiple choice paradigm. Children with dyslexia aged 10 years showed equivalent recognition overall to TD controls for both the low-pass and band-pass filtered stimuli, but showed significantly impaired acoustic learning during the experiment from low-pass filtered targets. Children with oral SLIs aged 9 years showed significantly poorer recognition of band pass filtered targets compared to their TD controls, and showed comparable acoustic learning effects to TD children during the experiment. The SLI samples were also divided into children with and without phonological difficulties. The children with both SLI and phonological difficulties were impaired in recognizing both kinds of filtered speech. These data are suggestive of impaired temporal sampling of the speech signal at different modulation rates by children with different kinds of developmental language disorder. Both SLI and dyslexic samples showed impaired discrimination of amplitude rise times. Implications of these findings for a temporal sampling framework for understanding developmental language disorders are discussed. PMID:27303348