Document Detail

The effects of age and infant hearing status on maternal use of prosodic cues for clause boundaries in speech.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  20966387     Owner:  NLM     Status:  In-Data-Review    
PURPOSE: The present study examined the effects of age and hearing status of a child on maternal use of pitch change, preboundary vowel lengthening, and pause duration, all of which are prosodic cues correlated with clause boundaries in infant-directed speech.
METHOD: Mothers' speech to infants with normal hearing (NH; n = 18), infants who are profoundly deaf with a cochlear implant (HI; n = 9), and an adult experimenter were recorded at 2 time periods separated by 6 months. NH infants were matched to HI infants by chronological age or hearing experience. Fundamental frequency of pre- and postboundary vowels, vowel duration, and pause duration between utterances was measured.
RESULTS: Results demonstrated that mothers (a) exaggerated prosodic characteristics in infant-directed speech regardless of infants' hearing status; (b) tailored preboundary vowel lengthening to infants' hearing experience rather than to chronological age; and (c) decreased exaggeration of pause duration over time.
CONCLUSIONS: The results suggest that acoustic cues correlated with clause boundaries are available in maternal speech to HI infants. Their exaggeration relative to adult-directed speech suggests that mothers' use of infant-directed speech is a natural behavior regardless of infant hearing status. Finally, mothers modify speech prosody according to their children's age and hearing experience.
Maria V Kondaurova; Tonya R Bergeson
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article     Date:  2010-10-21
Journal Detail:
Title:  Journal of speech, language, and hearing research : JSLHR     Volume:  54     ISSN:  1558-9102     ISO Abbreviation:  J. Speech Lang. Hear. Res.     Publication Date:  2011 Jun 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2011-06-02     Completed Date:  -     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  9705610     Medline TA:  J Speech Lang Hear Res     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  740-54     Citation Subset:  IM    
Correspondence to Maria V. Kondaurova:
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