Clinical Linguistics & Phonetics

Published by Informa Healthcare
Online ISSN: 1464-5076
Print ISSN: 0269-9206
Production information of the corpus reporting the children's age, number of children per age group, mean number of utterances and mean length of utterances with standard deviation 
The Language Assessment, Remediation and Screening Procedure (Crystal, Fletcher and Garman, 1976; The grammatical analysis of language disability. London: Edward Arnold) is a linguistic profile commonly used by researchers and clinicians to carry out detailed analyses of the grammar and morphology of children's spontaneous language samples. This article discusses the methods used to adapt the profile from English to French using a large corpus of child language in order to accurately assign morphosyntactic structures to age-based stages.
The ethologic model of phonetic development supposes that the increased use of different places of consonant-like (closant) and vowel-like (vocant) articulation defines the growth of phonetic diversity early in life (Bauer, 1988b). To test this model, vocalizations were sampled from children during caregiver-child play interactions. It was hypothesized that regular development of phonetic diversity could be defined by applying a measure, the phonetic product (PP) estimator, to the vocalizations of two groups of infants (referred to as the Omaha and Syracuse groups). The Omaha group of five children were sampled at 13 and 24 months of age, while the Syracuse group of six children were sampled monthly between 8 and 25 months of age. Phonetic diversity was estimated for each vocalization using the weighted PP of counted phones in eight different phonetic categories. The PP increased between the two sampling ages for the Omaha group and had a monthly growth for the Syracuse group. These findings, relating the PP to age, support the hypothesis that phonetic diversity increases as predicted by the ethologic model of phonetic development.
Abstract This study aimed to assess the communicative skills of children and young adults with ring 14 syndrome and linear 14q deletions, investigating the relationships among their language development and their genetic, clinical, psychomotor and behavioural characteristics. Participants were 36 individuals with chromosome 14 aberrations whose parents completed a questionnaire, specifically developed in five languages, to assess their son's/daughter's development. Data analysis showed that chronological age does not account for the high individual variability found in the participants' skills. The comparison between participants with ring 14 syndrome and participants with 14q linear deletions showed that the former were characterised by a higher occurrence of epilepsy, abnormalities of the retina and autism. The participants with smaller amounts of deleted genetic material were those who had a higher level of language development. Because ring 14 syndrome is a rare genetic disease, the collection of data from a large group of individuals could be helpful to create expectations about the possible developmental outcomes of these children.
The present study focussed on a specific type of rare genetic condition: chromosome 14 deletions. Children with this genetic condition often show developmental delays and brain and neurological problems, although the type and severity of symptoms varies depending on the size and location of the deleted genetic material. The specific aim of the present study was to describe the developmental trajectories of language skills in a group of children with linear 14q deletions. Four children with an interstitial deletion of the long arm of chromosome 14 were followed for 1 year. Data collected from psychomotor and linguistic assessments highlight a large individual variability. Considering the children's genetic and clinical conditions, findings revealed that the size of the deleted area is not related to outcome. However, the developmental trajectories of language development are deeply influenced by the presence of clinical conditions, such as autism spectrum disorders.
Previous research in the USA studying Spanish-English bilingual children's language development has largely focused on children's developing abilities in Spanish. However, relatively little research has been conducted on children's English grammatical development. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to examine the English grammatical development of bilingual (Spanish-English) Head Start children during the preschool years. The goals were to determine (a) whether there are differences in children's productions of English grammatical morphemes based on timing of English exposure and (b) which morphological structures met mastery, emerging and early emerging levels of production by bilingual children. These aims were accomplished through in-depth analyses of spontaneous language samples collected over a two-year period in Head Start. Comparisons were made between Spanish-speaking children who were exposed to English at home from birth (home English communication (HEC)) and Spanish-speaking children who were not expected to communicate in English until their entry into Head Start (school English communication (SEC)). Results indicated that children in the HEC group mastered more morphemes earlier than the children in the SEC group; however, by the end of children's second year in Head Start both groups had mastered a similar number of morphemes. Additionally, the children in both groups differed in which morphemes were mastered at the end of Head Start when compared to monolingual English-speaking children. The results of this investigation provide information to clinicians about typical English grammatical development of Spanish-English preschool children.
One of the most fascinating and frustrating issues in the priority of discovery in science is over just who, for the first time, went on record in the public forum, either orally at a conference or through a published communication, proclaiming that the faculty of articulate human speech was located in the left, not the right, cortical hemisphere. The disputed paper was purportedly written in 1836 by Marc Dax, who died subsequently in 1837. He was a physician in southern France in the city of Montpellier--far from the medical center of Paris. Little note was made of the presumed paper until the early and mid-1860s, when the issue of language localization in the human brain took on increased activity, as the clinico-pathological method of explanation continued to flourish in the "Art of Physick." Marc Dax's son, Gustave, happened to be studying medicine in Paris in the 1860s, and, as most of the neuroscientific and anthropological researchers, came to know of Broca's published work, which in 1861, agreed with phrenological theory that this faculty was, indeed, in the anterior lobes, but further claimed, de novo, that the region in the anterior lobe was more precisely focused at the foot of the 3rd frontal convolution in that lobe, still assuming with phrenological theory and the "Law of Symmetry" that the faculty was bilaterally located. It was not until 1865 that Broca clearly, non-hesitatingly, and unambiguously claimed that the faculty was in the left hemisphere. As it turned out, Gustave, six weeks before Broca's paper appeared, had published the paper he said his father had written in 1836. In 1863, in fact, Gustave had submitted his (Gustave's) long monograph on aphemia, integrating what he claimed to be his father's 1836 pronouncement along with his own data. He sent this communication to the French Academy of Sciences and to the French Academy of Medicine; he heard nothing back from either academy. After waiting two years, he managed to publish his material. Gustave's valiant move to promote his father's priority for one of the most significant conclusions in the history of the neurosciences is a lesson in frustration. Broca's attitude towards Gustave's case was disarmingly nonchalant; the issue deserves further historical inquiry.
This article comments on a recent experimental study on production and comprehension of negative morphemes by aphasic adults (Bebout, 1993). It is argued that the different patterns seen in comprehension and production of 'not' and bound negative prefixes is predicted by Grodzinsky's (1990) model of syntactic deficits in agrammatism. The Competition Model of sentence processing is used to account for the high performance on 'not' in the production experiment. Neither Grodzinsky's model nor the Competition Model fully explain the performance patterns in Bebout's data by themselves, but in combination they can provide a uniform account.
A recent study by Packman, Onslow, Coombes and Goodwin (2001) employed a non-word-reading paradigm to test the contribution of the lexical retrieval process to stuttering. They consider that, with this material, the lexical retrieval process could not contribute to stuttering and that either anxiety and/or the motor demand of reading are the governing factors. This paper will discuss possible processes underlying non-word reading and it argues that the conclusion arrived at by Packman et al. does not stand up to close scrutiny. In their introduction, the authors acknowledge that the lexicalization process involves retrieval and encoding of words. In a non-word-reading task, the word retrieval component is eliminated. The possibility that the encoding component of the lexicalization process leads to stuttering is, however, completely ignored by the authors when they attribute stuttering to motor demands. As theories put forward by Postma and Kolk (the Covert Repair Hypothesis, 1993) and Howell and Au-Yeung (the EXPLAN theory, 2002) argue heavily for the role of the phonological encoding processes in stuttering, Packman et al.'s work does not evaluate such theories. Theoretical issues aside, Packman et al.'s arguments about reading rate and stuttering rate based on reading time is also questionable.
Editorial This is the second edition of the conference proceedings for the 14th Meeting of the International Clinical Phonetics and Linguistics Association (ICPLA), held on 27–30 June 2012 at University College Cork, Ireland. The conference was the largest so far, attracting around 250 delegates from 33 different countries. The scientific programme included a total of 160 posters, 60 oral sessions, 9 thematic panels, 4 plenary talks and 1 award presentation – the Honours of the Association. The honoree was Prof. David Crystal, for his pioneering work in the field of Clinical Linguistics, his important on-going work in that field, and in the study of language in general. The first edition of the conference proceedings, which included three plenaries and four research papers, was published in the April issue of the Journal. The current, second edition includes 13 papers contributed by the following authors: Mehmet Yavaş; Nancy Scherer, Zuzana Oravkinova and Matthew McBee; Elspeth McCartney and Sue Ellis; Fiona Gibbon and Heather Smyth; Hanne Gram Simonsen, Marianne Lind, Pernille Hansen, Elisabeth Holm and Bjørn-Helge Mevik; David Snow and David Ertmer; Daniela Gatt, Helen Grech and Barbara Dodd; Boška Munivrana and Vesna Mildner; Natalia Zharkova; Toby Macrae; Sandrine Leroy, Christophe Parisse and Christelle Maillart; Elisabeth Joy Newbold, Joy Stackhouse and BillWells; Chantal Desmarais, Line Nadeau, Natacha Trudeau, Paméla Filiatrault-Veilleux and Catherine Maxès-Fournier.
Several research groups have previously constructed short forms of the MacArthur-Bates Communicative Development Inventories (CDI) for different languages. We consider the specific aim of constructing such a short form to be used for language screening in a specific age group. We present a novel strategy for the construction, which is applicable if results from a population-based study using the CDI long form are available for this age group. The basic approach is to select items in a manner implying a left-skewed distribution of the summary score and hence a reliable discrimination among children in the lower end of the distribution despite the measurement error of the instrument. We report on the application of the strategy in constructing a Danish CDI short form and present some results illustrating the validity of the short form. Finally we discuss the choice of the most appropriate age for language screening based on a vocabulary score.
Summary of studies of isiXhosa speech development (based on Pascoe & Smouse, 2012). 
Overview of participants. 
Percentage of children who produced affricates correctly. 
Percentage consonants and vowels correct. 
Abstract Standardized assessments of children's isiXhosa phonology have not yet been developed and there is limited information about developmental norms in this language. This article reports on the phonological development of 24 typically developing first language isiXhosa-speaking children aged 3;0-6;0 years, in Cape Town, South Africa. The order and age of acquisition of isiXhosa phonemes, emergence and elimination of phonological processes and percentage consonants and vowels correct are described. A set of culturally and linguistically appropriate pictures was used to elicit single word responses that were recorded and transcribed. The study found that children had acquired most isiXhosa phonemes by 3;0 years although aspirated plosives, affricates, fricatives and clicks were still developing. In particular, the affricates and aspirated plosives were still developing in the 5-year-old children in this sample, suggesting that these may be the latest acquired segments. Children were able to produce basic word shapes by 3;0 years, but some of the words of 4-6 syllables were still being mastered by the 4- and 5-year-old children. Phonological processes that have been well documented for other languages were used by children in this sample (e.g. deaffrication, stopping and gliding of liquids). Findings presented for this pre-school-aged sample are related to theories of phonological acquisition to provide normative data on phonological development in isiXhosa-speaking children.
Few investigations have studied changes in normal conversational performance throughout the lifespan. The present study gathered preliminary data on 40 normal-language subjects between the ages of 30 and 90 years. The subjects were matched for age and sex in dyads and engaged in conversations. The conversations were analyzed for topic manipulation skills (introduction, reintroduction, maintenance, shading) and cohesive adequacy (complete ties, erroneous ties, incomplete ties). Significant differences were found between older and younger dyads on the topic and cohesion variables.
This study introduces a resource for examining children's use of low-frequency vocabulary and describes preliminary evidence of its validity. Using a corpus of >1400 transcripts from school-aged children, we derived a concordance of all words spoken by the children and generated a list of 2079 uncommon words we have called WERVE, the Wordlist for Expressive Rare Vocabulary Evaluation. Preliminary validity evidence for WERVE was examined through correlation analyses with WERVE results and other common language measures in a test sample of 112 children age 7 and 8 years. In addition, we replicated the correlation analyses using a sample of 38 eight-year-old children. WERVE results correlated strongly with established language sample measures and to a lesser but frequently significant degree with standardized test results. Results also showed developmental change from age 7 to age 8. Correlations ranged from medium to large. These results suggest that WERVE may be a useful tool for language sample researchers to explore.
The present study used correlation analyses to examine the extent to which language abilities are associated with nonverbal IQ in 30 children with language impairment, age 4-8 years. After controlling for age, nonverbal IQ demonstrated medium associations with composite measures of both semantic and morphosyntactic abilities (r = .46 and .45 respectively). However when only criterion-referenced measures of language were included in the analyses, no significant associations between language and nonverbal IQ were observed. In addition, individual difference scores between language and nonverbal IQ revealed that discrepancies occurred in both directions--with language exceeding nonverbal IQ in some cases and nonverbal IQ exceeding language in others. In sum, the relatively inconsistent associations between language and nonverbal IQ provided additional reason to question current practices, such as cognitive referencing and the definition of specific language impairment. Implications in regard to theoretical accounts of language impairment are also discussed.
L'A. propose un exercice de production de denominations orales visant a evaluer les consequences sur la production lexicale lors de lesion a l'hemisphere droit. Il propose une serie d'analyses qualitatives afin de determiner les caracteristiques des mots produits et leur evolution en temps reel
The comparison of cognitive and linguistic skills in individuals with developmental disorders is fraught with methodological and psychometric difficulties. In this paper, we illustrate some of these issues by comparing the receptive vocabulary knowledge and non-verbal reasoning abilities of 41 children with Williams syndrome, a genetic disorder in which language abilities are often claimed to be relatively strong. Data from this group were compared with data from typically developing children, children with Down syndrome, and children with non-specific learning difficulties using a number of approaches including comparison of age-equivalent scores, matching, analysis of covariance, and regression-based standardization. Across these analyses children with Williams syndrome consistently demonstrated relatively good receptive vocabulary knowledge, although this effect appeared strongest in the oldest children.
Initial consonant phones present in 50% of subjects' inventories in LTt, LTd and LB groups
Data from the Cantonese Communicative Development Inventory (CCDI) is used to review the phonological preferences of younger (16-22 months) and older (23-30 month) groups of children in the lexical items they are reported to be able to say. Analogous results to those found for English emerge from the Cantonese data: the younger group display selectivity in the initial consonants of words they say, and their preferences accord with developmental tendencies in Cantonese phonology. From children whose scores fell below the tenth percentile of the CCDI, a subset were followed up 1 year later and their linguistic progress evaluated. Only a proportion of these children were below still below the tenth percentile for vocabulary at follow-up. Their lexical immaturities were accompanied by limited phonetic abilities. The implications of the findings are discussed.
Mean scores in TROG out-of-context and TROG in-context in the two groups of participants. 
The contribution of lower level linguistic abilities (study 1) and a higher level capacity, namely the use of context, (study 2), on text comprehension was studied. Participants were 16 individuals with Down syndrome aged between aged between 8 years 11 months and 16 years 10 months, and 16 children with typical development, aged between 5 years 11 months and 7 years 3 months, matched for the level of text comprehension. In study 1 the two groups were compared for receptive vocabulary and sentence comprehension: both of them were shown to play a role in text comprehension in Down syndrome. Since participants with Down syndrome had very low scores in sentence comprehension, study 2 tested the hypothesis that when sentences were presented within a brief context, individuals with Down syndrome would perform better. This hypothesis was confirmed and it was shown that contextual facilitation was closely related to text comprehension skills.
Lingual-palatal contact patterns and auditorily judged misarticulations, classed as palatalized misarticulation (PM), lateral misarticulation (LM), nasopharyngeal misarticulation (NM), and other distortions were compared in 53 Japanese cleft palate patients. Velopharyngeal function of these patients was considered within normal limits. Contact patterns were recorded by electropalatography (EPG) in an attempt to objectively categorize the misarticulations of cleft palate speakers including those previously reported in English. It is concluded that these lingual-palatal contact patterns are characterized by a broader and/or more posterior pattern than found in normal speakers, although considerable variability was noted.
Individuals with cleft palate, even those with adequate velopharyngeal function, are at high risk for disordered lingual articulation. This article attempts to summarize current knowledge of abnormal tongue-palate contact patterns derived from electropalatographic (EPG) data in speakers with cleft palate. These data, which have been reported in 23 articles published over the past 20 years, have added significantly to our knowledge about cleft palate speech. Eight abnormal patterns of tongue-palate contact are described and illustrated with data from children and adults with repaired cleft palate. The paper also discusses some of the problems in interpreting EPG data from speakers with abnormal craniofacial anatomy and emphasizes the importance of quantifying relevant aspects of tongue-palate contact data. Areas of research requiring further investigation are outlined.
Computer interface used by the perceptual judges. The button labelled ‘‘normal anchor’’ in the top right was used for comparing recorded voices to a normal perceptual anchor during the rating task. 
Mean severity ratings for the various age/gender Normal vs. SVAS/WS subjects 
Mean vocal pitch ratings for the various age/gender Normal vs. SVAS/WS subjects. 
Mean frequency of occurrence for vocal quality ratings for the various age/gender Normal vs. SVAS/WS subjects. 
The human elastin gene (ELN) is responsible for the generation of elastic fibres in the extracellular matrix of connective tissue throughout the body, including the vocal folds. Individuals with Supravalvular aortic stenosis (SVAS) and Williams syndrome (WS) lack one normal ELN allele due to heterozygous ELN abnormalities, resulting in a haploinsufficiency. We measured perceptual and acoustic characteristics of voice quality in individuals with SVAS and WS to investigate the consequences to vocal function secondary to ELN haploinsufficiency. Results indicated that the voice quality of individuals with SVAS/WS was rated as significantly more abnormal, rough, and hoarse compared to normal controls, and that adults with SVAS/WS were rated as significantly lower in pitch. Acoustic measures indicated that individuals with SVAS/WS produced greater instability of fundamental frequency during phonation (as reflected via increased pitch sigma and increased jitter). These findings support the possibility that heterozygous ELN abnormalities negatively influence vocal fold biomechanics and the resulting sound produced by the vibrating glottis.
Australian Aboriginal children typically receive communication assessment services from Standard Australian English (SAE) speaking non-Aboriginal speech-language pathologists (SLPs). Educational assessments, including intelligence testing, are also primarily conducted by non-Aboriginal educational professionals. While the current paper will show that non-Indigenous SLPs can conduct valid communication assessments with Indigenous children, it will also be shown that educational assessments do not always benefit the child being assessed, and may sometimes do harm to Aboriginal children. Many of the issues surrounding the assessment of Australian Aboriginal children by non-Aboriginal SLPs are similar to those encountered in other countries where Indigenous populations represent a minority. Very little research has been conducted within Australia to examine this issue. This paper presents overviews of case studies from a longitudinal research project designed to examine the topic of cross-cultural speech-language pathology assessment with Indigenous children, making specific reference to the situation in Australia.
The current article describes the results, inter-scorer reliability, and potential sources of bias in conducting speech-language assessments with Aboriginal children in remote Ontario communities using videoconferencing. A main focus of this pilot study was to examine scoring bias, an issue that might arise with videoconferencing for any population but that could potentially interact with test and cultural bias to negatively affect the diagnosis of Aboriginal children. Assessments were administered by a remote-site speech-language pathologist (SLP), while an on-site SLP served as an assistant. Responses were scored simultaneously by both SLPs and the results and their degree of correspondence were compared. Percentage agreement ranged from 96-100% for language tests and from 66-100% for the articulation measure. Results suggest that videoconferencing can be an effective complement to service provision when procedures are organized so as to minimize bias in test administration and in the interpretation of test performance.
Distribution of speakers of Australian Aboriginal languages. Data from 1996 Census of Population and Housing (ABS 2000). 
It is probable that the majority of the 455 000 strong Aboriginal population of Australia speak some form of Australian Aboriginal English (AAE) at least some of the time and that it is the first (and only) language of many Aboriginal children. This means their language is somewhere on a continuum ranging from something very close to Standard Australian English (SAE) at one end, through to something very close to creole at the other. The phonetics and phonology, grammar, and lexicon of AAE are influenced to varying degrees by the Australian Aboriginal language substrate. There are also some features typical of non-standard Englishes in general, and some which have been retained from earlier forms of the colonial language. Many teachers still see this variety as an uneducated or corrupted form of Standard Australian English, rather than as a different dialect of English that is just as efficient a medium of communication.
Aspects of two different approaches to normal syllable formation (Berg, 1989; Clements, 1988, 1990) are incorporated into a model of abstruse neologism production characterized by redundant coding of sonority at various levels of parallel language processing. Data suggesting that the sonority profiles of abstruse neologisms accord with patterns found in legitimate English words are presented. Discussion explores neologism genesis from two well-known theoretical perspectives, illustrates how each theory of syllable formation might be instantiated within the model, and illustrates the role of sonority in constraining abstruse neologism production at several levels of parallel processing.
Foreign accent syndrome (FAS) is an acquired neurologic disorder in which an individual suddenly and unintentionally speaks with an accent which is perceived as being different from his/her usual accent. This study presents an acoustic-phonetic description of two Quebec French-speaking cases. The first speaker presents a perceived accent shift to Acadian French (French spoken in the easternmost provinces of Canada), whereas the second acquired an accent identified as Germanic. Speech seems affected by constraints on the coordination of articulatory gestures, expressed by distortions in the production of segments. These distortions do not necessarily result from changes in suprasegmental settings (slow speech rate and isochronous syllable pattern were observed) but may cause the disappearance of markers used for Quebec French accent recognition. Reported speech characteristics are comparable to those of speakers with apraxia of speech (AOS) but symptoms are relatively mild and somewhat similar to the speech of foreign speakers. For this reason, the position that FAS may be a mild form or subtype of AOS, as maintained by other authors, should be seriously considered.
Abstract Matsumoto-Shimamori, Ito, Fukuda, and Fukuda (2011) proposed the hypothesis that the transition from the core vowel (i.e. syllable nucleus) in the first syllable of a word to the following segment significantly affects the occurrence of stuttering in Japanese. The purpose of this study was to investigate whether word accent (i.e. an abrupt pitch fall in Japanese) affects the production difficulty of the transition from the core vowel in the first syllable of a word to the following segment in Japanese. The participants were 25 Japanese children who stuttered, ranging in age from 6;4 to 12;5. A two- and three-syllable word naming task was used. The frequency of stuttering was not significantly different between the words with and without an abrupt pitch fall, and among those whose positions of an abrupt pitch fall were different. These results suggest that word accent does not have a significant effect on the difficulty of the transition from the core vowel in the first syllable of a word in Japanese.
A new case of Foreign Accent Syndrome is described. This American woman presented with a British- or Australian- sounding accent after stroke, which resulted in a lacunar infarct in the left internal capsule. The atypical etiology and apparent changes in lexical use are described. It is hypothesized that an abnormally tense vocal tract posture may account for phonetic changes in vowel quality and a higher average fundamental frequency.
This paper presents an acoustic-phonetic description of two American English speakers with foreign accent syndrome (FAS). Speech samples were collected from both speakers. Acoustic measurements of voice onset time, vowel duration, first and second formant frequency analysis, fundamental frequency (F0), and consonantal duration were performed. Both speakers demonstrated timing errors and a hypothesized difference in vocal tract constriction. However, variability in acoustic-phonetic patterns between the two FAS speakers was noted in F0, F0 contours, manner of articulation, and linguistic modifications. These cases extend knowledge about the acoustic-phonetic patterns associated with FAS in an attempt to further describe the phenomenon.
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 speech of the FAS subject, alongside that of two native English speakers and Italian, Greek, and French L2 speakers acting as controls. The FAS subject was perceived to be as foreign-sounding as the L2 control speakers, but was also perceived as mildly impaired. The FAS subject's own perception of accents was also explored and it was found that his ability to distinguish presence and absence of accent does not seem to be affected. The relationship between listeners' perceptions and features of the FAS speech is explored via correlational statistics and qualitative analysis. Impressionistic phonetic analysis, supplemented by acoustic analysis, confirmed a number of features consistent with a typical Italian (and also Greek) accent and the Italian and Greek L2 speakers. A pre-stroke and a post-stroke sample from the FAS subject were compared and the nature of post-stroke changes in segmental realizations is discussed.
Foreign accent syndrome (FAS) is a rare disorder characterized by the emergence of a perceived foreign accent following brain damage. The symptomotology, functional bases, and neural substrates of this disorder are still being elucidated. In this case study, acoustic analyses were performed on the speech of a 46-year old monolingual female who presented with FAS of unknown aetiology. The patient had a pseudo-accent frequently described as 'Swedish' or 'Eastern European'. Stop consonant VOT, consonant burst spectra and duration, vowel durations, formant frequencies, and trajectories were analysed, along with prosodic cues for lexical stress assignment and sentence-level intonation. Results indicated VOT values were generally preserved, while there was a strong tendency to realize the English alveolar flap as a full stop, and to produce flaps that had greater-than-normal closure durations. The spectral properties of the patient's vowels resembled those of normal talkers (with the possible exceptions of decreased F1 values for /i/ and slight differences in formant dynamics for /u/, /o/, /i/, and /epsilon/). However, vowel durations were relatively long, contributing to exaggerated tense/lax contrasts. Token-to-token variability in vowel production was slightly higher than normal for duration, but not for formant frequency values. Lexical stress assignment was inaccurate and highly variable (with similar problems noted for non-speech materials), and sentence level intonation showed occasional deviations from typical American English patterns. For this patient, an underlying timing/rhythm difficulty appeared responsible for the range of segmental and suprasegmental changes leading to the impression of a foreign accent.
Well-documented Romance-Germanic differences in the use of accent in speech to convey information-structure and focus cause problems for the assessment of prosodic skills in populations with clinical disorders. The strategies for assessing the ability to use lexical and contrastive accent in English and Spanish are reviewed, and studies in the expression of contrastive accent in Spanish- and English-speaking typically-developing children are described. These studies used similar tasks requiring pre-final contrastive accent. Results were, however, strikingly different (English > Spanish). Using the same tasks, studies of English-speaking individuals with autism and Williams syndrome showed marked difficulty with the expression of contrastive stress, but the use of such tasks with Spanish speakers may merely reflect cross-linguistic differences. This study presents the methodology and results of these tasks, and suggests alternative methods of assessing the ability to discern and use contrastive accents in Spanish.
Scatterplot representing tense vowels (a) and lax vowels (b) uttered by EC in the pre-CVA (black circle) and post-CVA (square) conditions in Barks with the F2 on the X-axis and the F1 on the Y-axis. Differences in vowel duration ranged from 2 to 84 ms, word duration from 39 ms to 226 ms with one case (/#/) of shorter duration pre-CVA by 13 ms. Results of a Wilcoxon Signed Ranks test confirmed that the post-CVA speech was slower than the pre-CVA speech [Vowels: n = 10, T+ = 7, z = -2.191, p = 0.028; Words: n = 10, T+ = 9, z = -2.701, p = 0.007].
Native American English Judges' Responses (in Percent) to Speech and Voice Characteristics of EC in Post-Cerebrovascular Accident (CVA) (Compared to Pre-CVA Condition) and Hebrew, French, English, and Spanish Speakers in Slow Condition (Compared to Normal Rate Condition)
This study documents patterns of change in speech production in a multilingual with aphasia following a cerebrovascular accident (CVA). EC, a right-handed Hebrew-English-French trilingual man, had a left fronto-temporo-parietal CVA, after which he reported that his (native) Hebrew accent became stronger in his (second language) English. Recordings of his pre- and post-CVA speech permitted an investigation of changes in his accent. In sentence- and segment-listening tasks, native American English listeners (n = 13 and 15, respectively) judged EC's pre- and post-CVA speech. EC's speech was perceived as more foreign-accented, slow, strained and hesitant, but not less intelligible, post-CVA. Acoustic analysis revealed less coarticulation and longer vowel- and word-durations post-CVA. This case extends knowledge about perceptual and acoustic changes in speech production in multilinguals following CVAs. It is suggested that EC's stronger accent post-CVA may have resulted from damage to the neuronal networks that led to impairment in his other language domains.
Screenshot showing the accent location map and forced choice list of cities  
Scores group-by-accent interaction (error bars show 95% confidence intervals)  
Dendrogram generated by the hierarchical cluster analysis results for participants  
The UK is a diverse society where individuals regularly interact with speakers with different accents. Whilst there is a growing body of research on the impact of speaker accent on comprehension in people with aphasia, there is none which explores their ability to identify accents. This study investigated the ability of this group to identify the geographical origins of a speaker. Age-matched participants with and without aphasia listened to 120 audio recordings of five speakers each of six accents, reading aloud four sentences each. Listeners were asked to make a forced-choice decision about the geographical origin of the speaker. Adults with aphasia were significantly less accurate than control participants at identifying accents but both groups made the same pattern of errors. Adults with aphasia who are able to identify a new speaker as being from a particular place may draw on this information to help them "tune in" to the accent.
The purpose of this study was to determine possible differences in voice onset time (VOT) between speakers of standard American English (AE) and Indian English (IE) in a continuous speech context. The participants were 20 AE speakers, who were native to the Northeastern Pennsylvania region, and 20 IE speakers from the Indian subcontinent who had been residing in Northeastern Pennsylvania. Each subject read a phonetically balanced passage in a comfortable and natural speaking voice, and the recordings were analysed using a combination of waveform and spectrographic analyses. Results indicate that a reduced +VOT appears to characterise IE accent in comparison to AE. In addition, a difference in VOT between genders was observed in AE speakers but not in IE speakers.
The present study was designed to examine the production of the Swedish tonal accents in children with language impairment and normal controls in order to verify previous findings. The productions of 25 children with linguistic impairment and their matched controls, aged 4;4-10;0 (mean age 5;11) were evaluated by ratings of fundamental frequency patterns, and by perceptual analysis by ten linguistically naive listeners to assess the distinctiveness of the accents. These methods give a more detailed description of the children's productions of tonal word accents. The results show that 60.8% of the children with language impairment have difficulties to produce the contrast of tonal word accents according to the F(0) patterns. The difference in the rating of the F(0) curves between the children with LI and their matched controls was significant. There is a significant positive correlation between the perceptual results and the F(0)-rating, indicating that the better a child was perceived, the better his/her F(0) production was rated. We conclude that the distinction between the tonal word accents is a difficult feature to acquire for Swedish children, which is shown both by acoustic and perceptual evaluations.
Sentences recorded by four speakers with dysarthria and two control speakers were presented to listeners at three different rates: habitual, a 30% slower rate and a 30% higher rate. Rate changes were made by digitally manipulating the habitual sentences. Thirty young normal adult listeners rated the sentences for intelligibility (per cent correct words) and acceptability (via 9-point equal interval scale ranging from "terrible" through "excellent"). Intelligibility for each speaker remained unchanged across rate changes. Acceptability improved as rates increased for the two more intelligible impaired speakers. For the less intelligible impaired speakers, ratings were better and similar for the habitual and fast speaking rate conditions. Results are discussed in terms of the objective nature of intelligibility ratings vs. the subjective ratings of acceptability.
Increased tongue-palate contact for perceptually acceptable alveolar stops has been observed in children with speech sound disorders (SSD). This is a retrospective study that further investigated this issue by using quantitative measures to compare the target alveolar stops /t/, /d/ and /n/ produced in words by nine children with SSD (20 tokens of /t/, 13 /d/ and 11 /n/) to those produced by eight typical children (32 /t/, 24 /d/ and 16 /n/). The results showed that children with SSD had significantly higher percent contact than the typical children for target /t/; the difference for /d/ and /n/ was not significant. Children with SSD generally showed more contact in the posterior central area of the palate than the typical children. The results suggested that broader tongue-palate contact is a general articulatory feature for children with SSD and its differential effect on error perception might be related to the different articulatory requirements.
In this plenary paper, we present a review of language research in children with cochlear implants along with an outline of a 5-year project designed to examine the lexical access for production and recognition. The project will use auditory priming, picture naming with auditory or visual interfering stimuli (Picture-Word Interference and Picture-Picture Interference, respectively) and eye tracking paradigms to examine the roles of semantic and various phonological factors. Preliminary data are presented from auditory priming, picture-word interference and picture-picture interference tasks. The emergence of group difference is briefly discussed.
The objective of this study is to create a new proposal for classifying the severity of speech disorders using a fuzzy model in accordance with a linguistic model that represents the speech acquisition of Brazilian Portuguese. The fuzzy linguistic model was run in the MATLAB software fuzzy toolbox from a set of fuzzy rules, and it encompassed three input variables: path routing, level of complexity and phoneme acquisition. The output was the Speech Disorder Severity Index, and it used the following fuzzy subsets: severe, moderate severe, mild moderate and mild. The proposal was used for 204 children with speech disorders who were monolingual speakers of Brazilian Portuguese. The fuzzy linguistic model provided the Speech Disorder Severity Index for all of the evaluated phonological systems in a fast and practical manner. It was then possible to classify the systems according to the severity of the speech disorder as severe, moderate severe, mild moderate and mild; the speech disorders could also be differentiated according to the severity index.
Children's prosodically conditioned substitutions have been recently described in terms of syllable structure. In this paper we present an alternative analysis, based on the position of the consonant within the foot. We review data from a previous case study (Chiat, 1989) that provide evidence in favour of a foot domain account and against the syllable structure account. One consequence of this finding is that it may be unnecessary to postulate that intervocalic consonants are captured into the coda of the previous syllable. While we caution that more evidence is needed to further test the foot and syllable accounts, we suggest that the foot be considered as a locus of substitution errors in phonology-disordered children.
Normalized jaw movement trajectories and corresponding STIs associated with utterance / pαp/ ('Pop') produced by the child with CAS (at Time 1 and Time 9) and by a control participant.  
Jaw movement patterns were examined longitudinally in a 3-year-old male with childhood apraxia of speech (CAS) and compared with a typically developing control group. The child with CAS was followed for 8 months, until he began accurately and consistently producing the bilabial phonemes /p/, /b/, and /m/. A movement tracking system was used to study jaw duration, displacement, velocity, and stability. A transcription analysis determined the percentage of phoneme errors and consistency. Results showed phoneme-specific changes which included increases in jaw velocity and stability over time, as well as decreases in duration. Kinematic parameters became more similar to patterns seen in the controls during final sessions where tokens were produced most accurately and consistently. Closing velocity and stability, however, were the only measures to fall within a 95% confidence interval established for the controls across all three target phonemes. These findings suggest that motor processes may differ between children with CAS and their typically developing peers.
Mean target variability according to word type. 
Descriptive statistics and experimental measures.
Mean target accuracy according to word type. 
Lexical and phonological characteristics of target words.
The present study investigated the effects of lexical age of acquisition (AoA), phonological complexity, age and expressive vocabulary on spoken word variability and accuracy in typically developing infants, aged 1;9-3;1. It was hypothesized that later-acquired words and those with more complex speech sounds would be produced more variably and less accurately than earlier-acquired words and those with less complex speech sounds. It was also hypothesized that word variability would decrease and word accuracy would increase with increasing age and vocabulary knowledge. Participants' productions of 20 target words, experimentally controlled for AoA and phonological complexity, were audio-recorded during a play session. Results revealed a nonsignificant effect of AoA on variability and accuracy, a significant effect of phonological complexity on variability and accuracy, a significant effect of age on variability and accuracy and a significant effect of vocabulary on variability. Theoretical and clinical implications are discussed.
Children with residual speech sound errors are often underserved clinically, yet there has been a lack of recent research elucidating the specific deficits in this population. Adolescents aged 10-14 with residual speech sound errors (RE) that included rhotics were compared to normally speaking peers on tasks assessing speed and accuracy of speech production. The two groups were evaluated on an oral diadochokinetic task, which required rapid production of the trisyllable /p Lambda t Lambda k Lambda/, and two rapid naming tasks: monosyllabic letter names and multisyllabic picture names. No significant group differences were observed in the speed of trisyllables on the DDK task, whether examining all attempts or only correct productions. However, the RE group was less accurate and more variable in their production of the trisyllables. In addition, the RE group was slower and phonologically less accurate in rapidly naming multisyllabic pictures, but not in naming letters. A combination of speed and accuracy measures from these tasks revealed relatively little overlap between groups. Results suggest that both speed and accuracy may be impaired in adolescents with RE, although the underlying causal mechanisms require further exploration.
Phase I results: group comparison of language sample measures (LSMs). 
Abstract This study examined the diagnostic accuracy of selected language sample measures (LSMs) with Persian-speaking children. A pre-accuracy study followed by phase I and II studies are reported. Twenty-four Persian-speaking children, aged 42 to 54 months, with primary language impairment (PLI) were compared to 27 age-matched children without PLI on a set of measures derived from play-based, conversational language samples. Results showed that correlations between age and LSMs were not statistically significant in either group of children. However, a majority of LSMs differentiated children with and without PLI at the group level (phase I), while three of the measures exhibited good diagnostic accuracy at the level of the individual (phase II). We conclude that general LSMs are promising for distinguishing between children with and without PLI. Persian-specific measures are mainly helpful in identifying children without language impairment while their ability to identify children with PLI is poor.
Top-cited authors
Nelson Roy
  • University of Utah
Edythe Strand
  • Mayo Clinic, Rochester MN
Geoffrey S Meltzner
  • Systems and Technology Research
Marie E Jetté
  • University of Colorado
Marios Fourakis
  • University of Wisconsin–Madison