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Language and Speech

Lan-Fen Huang
This corpus-based study examines the widely-used discourse marker well in Chinese-speaking learners' speech and compares its frequencies in native speaker data and Swedish learners. While Swedish learners overuse well, Chinese-speaking learners (predominantly at the upper-intermediate level) significantly underuse it. The positions and functions of well are further examined using a functional framework. One-fourth of the Chinese-speaking learners who use well manipulate its positions in utterances in a similar way to native speakers...
September 20, 2018: Language and Speech
Katharina Korecky-Kröll, Neriman Dobek, Verena Blaschitz, Sabine Sommer-Lolei, Monika Boniecki, Kumru Uzunkaya-Sharma, Wolfgang U Dressler
Phonological working memory capacity, vocabulary size, and narrative competence are important skills in children's L1 and L2 acquisition, which may vary as a function of their language background and socioeconomic status (SES). We investigated test data of 56 typically developing 4-year-old kindergarten children from two SES and two language backgrounds: 29 children (15 higher SES, 14 lower SES) were monolingual German-speaking, and 27 children (14 higher SES, 13 lower SES) were successive Turkish-German bilinguals...
September 17, 2018: Language and Speech
Sha Tao, Yingyue Chen, Wenjing Wang, Qi Dong, Su-Hyun Jin, Chang Liu
The identification of English consonants in quiet and multi-talker babble was examined for three groups of young adult listeners: Chinese in China, Chinese in the USA (CNU), and English-native listeners. As expected, native listeners outperformed non-native listeners. The two non-native groups had similar performance in quiet, whereas CNU listeners performed significantly better than Chinese in China listeners in babble. It is concluded that CNU listeners may benefit from English experience, for example, better use of temporal variation in noise and better capacity against informational masking, to perceive English consonants better in babble...
August 2, 2018: Language and Speech
Hyunjung Lee, Allard Jongman
Both segmental and suprasegmental properties of the South Kyungsang dialect of Korean have changed under the influence of standard Seoul Korean. This study examines how such sound change affects acoustic cues to the three-way laryngeal contrast among Korean stops across Kyungsang generations through a comparison with Seoul Korean. Thirty-nine female Korean speakers differing in dialect (Kyungsang, Seoul) and age (older, younger) produced words varying in initial stops and lexical accent patterns, for which voice onset time and fundamental frequency (F0) at vowel onset were measured...
July 1, 2018: Language and Speech
Jeffrey J Holliday
Previous studies have shown that non-native speakers of Korean not only have difficulty producing the word-initial three-way stop contrast, but also exhibit a wide range of production patterns. Because these studies have only investigated native (L1) speakers of English and Mandarin and given the overall paucity of research on non-native Korean, it is not yet clear how dependent these findings are on the particular native language under investigation. The current paper reinforces our empirical grounding via extension to L1 speakers of Japanese...
July 1, 2018: Language and Speech
Kristin M Pelczarski, Anna Tendera, Matthew Dye, Torrey M Loucks
Stuttering is a multifactorial disorder that is characterized by disruptions in the forward flow of speech believed to be caused by differences in the motor and linguistic systems. Several psycholinguistic theories of stuttering suggest that delayed or disrupted phonological encoding contributes to stuttered speech. However, phonological encoding remains difficult to measure without controlling for the involvement of the speech-motor system. Eye-tracking is proposed to be a reliable approach for measuring phonological encoding duration while controlling for the influence of speech production...
July 1, 2018: Language and Speech
Yu-Fu Chien, Allard Jongman
Taiwanese tonal alternation is realized in a circular chain shift fashion for both smooth and checked syllables. Debate regarding the processes of less productive Taiwanese tonal alternation has centered on whether a surface tone is derived from an underlying tone, or whether a surface tone is selected without undergoing any derivation. The current study investigates this controversial issue by examining Taiwanese checked tone and smooth tone sandhi neutralization in production. In particular, we analyzed whether checked citation and sandhi tone 53 (C21→C53), checked citation and sandhi tone 21 (C53→C21), smooth citation and sandhi tone 55 (S51→S55), and smooth citation and sandhi tone 21 (S33→S21) are acoustically completely neutralized in fundamental frequency (F0) height, contour, and duration...
July 1, 2018: Language and Speech
Jesse A Harris, Katy Carlson
We compare the roles of overt accent and default focus marking in processing ellipsis structures headed by focus-sensitive coordinators (such as Danielle couldn't pass the quiz, let alone the final/Kayla). In a small auditory corpus study of radio transcripts, we establish that such structures overwhelmingly occur with contrastive pitch accents on the correlate and remnant ( the quiz and the final, or Danielle and Kayla), and that there is a strong bias to pair the remnant with the most local plausible correlate in production...
September 2018: Language and Speech
Erin Conwell
In natural production, adults differentiate homophones prosodically as a function of the frequency of their intended meaning. This study compares adult and child productions of homophones to determine whether prosodic differentiation of homophones changes over development. Using a picture-based story-completion paradigm, isolated tokens of homophones were elicited from English-learning children and adult native English speakers. These tokens were measured for duration, vowel duration, pitch, pitch range, and vowel quality...
September 2018: Language and Speech
Miquel Llompart, Miquel Simonet
This study investigates the production and auditory lexical processing of words involved in a patterned phonological alternation in two dialects of Catalan spoken on the island of Majorca, Spain. One of these dialects, that of Palma, merges /ɔ/ and /o/ as [o] in unstressed position, and it maintains /u/ as an independent category, [u]. In the dialect of Sóller, a small village, speakers merge unstressed /ɔ/, /o/, and /u/ to [u]. First, a production study asks whether the discrete, rule-based descriptions of the vowel alternations provided in the dialectological literature are able to account adequately for these processes: are mergers complete? Results show that mergers are complete with regards to the main acoustic cue to these vowel contrasts, that is, F1...
September 2018: Language and Speech
Yuki Asano
The present study examines how vulnerable perception of second language prosody is to increased task demands. German learners of Japanese, German non-learners without exposure to Japanese, and Japanese native listeners were tested in their ability to discriminate consonant length contrasts (compared to vowel length contrasts that served as a control condition). Memory load was increased by a longer inter-stimulus interval (2500 ms compared to 300 ms) and the demand on attention control was enhanced through the addition of the acoustic complexity of the stimuli (i...
September 2018: Language and Speech
Eun Jong Kong, Hyunjung Lee
Previous research has shown differential degrees of attention in processing hierarchical linguistic information where higher order cues require greater attention in speech processing. The current study investigated the influence of attentional resources on acoustic cue weightings in speech perception by examining Korean listeners' identifications of the three-way laryngeal stops (tense vs. lax vs. aspirated). Using a dual-task paradigm, we presented 28 adult Korean listeners with identification tasks blocked by no-distractor versus distractor conditions where arithmetic calculations distracted the listeners' speech processing...
September 2018: Language and Speech
Marco van de Ven, Mirjam Ernestus
In natural conversations, words are generally shorter and they often lack segments. It is unclear to what extent such durational and segmental reductions affect word recognition. The present study investigates to what extent reduction in the initial syllable hinders word comprehension, which types of segments listeners mostly rely on, and whether listeners use word duration as a cue in word recognition. We conducted three experiments in Dutch, in which we adapted the gating paradigm to study the comprehension of spontaneously uttered conversational speech by aligning the gates with the edges of consonant clusters or vowels...
September 2018: Language and Speech
Niamh E Kelly, Rajka Smiljanić
The perception of the lexical pitch accents was examined in the Trøndersk dialect of Norwegian. Based on a production study, a categorization of stimuli with manipulated pitch contours was conducted. The experiment tested which acoustic cues (height and alignment of fundamental frequency (F0) minimum, and alignment of F0 maximum and turning point from maximum to minimum) are necessary for the perception of the tonal contrast. The results are consistent with the production findings in that changes in all of the examined acoustic cues contributed to the shift in accent categorization...
September 2018: Language and Speech
Bene Bassetti, Mirjana Sokolović-Perović, Paolo Mairano, Tania Cerni
Research shows that the orthographic forms ("spellings") of second language (L2) words affect speech production in L2 speakers. This study investigated whether English orthographic forms lead L2 speakers to produce English homophonic word pairs as phonological minimal pairs. Targets were 33 orthographic minimal pairs, that is to say homophonic words that would be pronounced as phonological minimal pairs if orthography affects pronunciation. Word pairs contained the same target sound spelled with one letter or two, such as the /n/ in finish and Finnish (both /'fɪnɪʃ/ in Standard British English)...
June 1, 2018: Language and Speech
D H Whalen, Laura L Koenig
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
June 2018: Language and Speech
Yasaman Rafat, Ryan A Stevenson
Recent studies have provided evidence for both a positive and a negative effect of orthography on second language speech learning. However, not much is known about whether orthography can trigger a McGurk-like effect (McGurk & MacDonald, 1976) in second language speech learning. This study examined whether exposure to auditory and orthographic input may lead to a McGurk-like effect in naïve English-speaking participants learning a second language with Spanish phonology and orthography. Specifically, it reports on (a) production of non-target-like combinations such as [lj] as in [poljo] for <pollo>-[pojo], where the auditory Spanish [j] and the first language English [l] that correspond to the shared digraph <ll> are integrated, and (b) fusion quantified in terms of [z] devoicing such as [z̥apito] for <zapito>-[zapito]...
June 1, 2018: Language and Speech
Sarah Ahmed, Michael Grosvald
This study investigates anticipatory vowel-to-vowel coarticulation in Arabic, and seeks to determine the degree to which it is affected by the pharyngealization and length of intervening consonants. Speakers of Egyptian Arabic were recorded saying sentences containing nonsense sequences of the form /baɁabaCV:/, where C was chosen from {/t/, /tˤ/, /t:/, /tˤ:/} and V was a long vowel /i:/, /a:/ or /u:/. Analysis of the first and second formants of the recorded vowels revealed that (a) vowel-to-vowel coarticulatory effects could sometimes extend to a distance of three vowels before the context vowel; (b) the consonant-to-vowel effects associated with pharyngealization were consistently seen at similar distances, while also decreasing in magnitude at greater distances from the triggering consonant; and (c) effects related to intervening consonant length were idiosyncratic, and in particular did not lead to consistent blocking of vowel-to-vowel effects...
June 1, 2018: Language and Speech
Jennifer S Pardo, Adelya Urmanche, Hannah Gash, Jaclyn Wiener, Nicholas Mason, Sherilyn Wilman, Keagan Francis, Alexa Decker
This paper introduces a conversational speech corpus collected during the completion of a map-matching task that is available for research purposes via the Montclair State University Digital Commons Data Repository. The Montclair Map Task is a new, role-neutral conversational task that involves paired iconic maps with labeled landmarks and a path drawn from a start point, around various landmarks, to a finish mark. One advantage of this task-oriented corpus is the ability to derive independent objective measures of task performance for both members of a conversational pair that can be related to aspects of communicative style...
June 1, 2018: Language and Speech
Bei Wang, Caroline Féry
This paper studies the prosodic realization of dual-focus in German, that is, two foci in a single sentence, with special consideration of the interaction between focus assignment and phrasing. In a production experiment, dual-focus was compared with its initial, final, and all-new counterparts in sentences with subject NPs and VPs of different lengths. The results showed that there were three different patterns of dual-focus realization: (1) The most frequent one was the two-peak pattern (57.8%), that is, a falling tone on both focused words and compressed and lowered pitch in-between; (2) the second most frequent was the two-phrase realization (23...
June 2018: Language and Speech
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