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Age and Phonetic Context Effects in Children vs. Adults

Utz, Tessa (2009) Age and Phonetic Context Effects in Children vs. Adults. Undergraduate Thesis, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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In normal hearing adults, acoustic context influences perception of speech in a spectrally contrastive manner. The aim of this study is to investigate whether typically developing children, aged 5 through 6 and 7 through 9 years, demonstrate phonetic context effects in a manner and extent similar to adults. By comparing the children's responses to those of adults aged 18 to 28 years, it will be determined if the children's use of phonetic context is limited by maturity. A total of 61 individuals participated in this study: 45 adults and 16 children. The participants listened to isolated vowels along the /ʌ/ to /ɛ/ acoustic continuum and indicated if they heard /ʌ/ or /ɛ/. They then listened to the same vowel continuum within a /d/-Vowel-/d/ syllable context and in a /b/-Vowel-/b/ syllable context. With each syllable presentation the participants identified the vowel sound that they heard. The participant's responses were assessed for shifts in the vowel perceptual boundaries relative to consonant context.The results indicated that the older children and the adults exhibited a context effect, but as a group, the younger children did not exhibit the effect. However, some of the younger children presented an effect that was consistent with the Older Children and Adults.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Utz, Tessatru3@pitt.eduTRU3
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairPratt, Sheilaspratt@pitt.eduSPRATT
Committee MemberMoncrieff, Deborahdmoncrie@pitt.eduDMONCRIE
Committee MemberDurrant, Johndurrant@pitt.eduDURRANT
Committee MemberHolt,
Date: 30 April 2009
Date Type: Completion
Defense Date: 16 April 2009
Approval Date: 30 April 2009
Submission Date: 22 April 2009
Access Restriction: 5 year -- Restrict access to University of Pittsburgh for a period of 5 years.
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences > Communication Science and Disorders
David C. Frederick Honors College
Degree: BPhil - Bachelor of Philosophy
Thesis Type: Undergraduate Thesis
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: spectral contrast; speech perception
Other ID:, etd-04222009-113438
Date Deposited: 10 Nov 2011 19:41
Last Modified: 15 Nov 2016 13:41


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