The Distribution of Phonated Intervals in the Speech of Individuals Who Stutter Purpose Previous research has demonstrated the fluency-improving effect of reducing the occurrence of short-duration, phonated intervals (PIs; ∼30–150 ms) in individuals who stutter, prompting the hypothesis that PIs in these individuals' speech are not distributed normally, particularly in the short PI ranges. It has also been hypothesized that this nonnormal ... Research Article
Research Article  |   February 01, 2006
The Distribution of Phonated Intervals in the Speech of Individuals Who Stutter
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Tara Godinho
    University of California, Santa Barbara
  • Roger J. Ingham
    University of Georgia, Athens
  • Jason Davidow
    University of California, Santa Barbara
  • Contact author: Roger J. Ingham, Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences, University of California, Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara, CA 93106. rjingham@speech.ucsb.edu
Article Information
Speech, Voice & Prosodic Disorders / Fluency Disorders / Speech, Voice & Prosody / Speech / Research Articles
Research Article   |   February 01, 2006
The Distribution of Phonated Intervals in the Speech of Individuals Who Stutter
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, February 2006, Vol. 49, 161-171. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2006/013)
History: Received December 27, 2004 , Accepted April 3, 2005
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, February 2006, Vol. 49, 161-171. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2006/013)
History: Received December 27, 2004; Accepted April 3, 2005
Web of Science® Times Cited: 7

Purpose Previous research has demonstrated the fluency-improving effect of reducing the occurrence of short-duration, phonated intervals (PIs; ∼30–150 ms) in individuals who stutter, prompting the hypothesis that PIs in these individuals' speech are not distributed normally, particularly in the short PI ranges. It has also been hypothesized that this nonnormal PI distribution will be present during the stutter-free speech of affected persons.

Method A comparison was made between the distributions of PIs during oral reading by adolescent and adult speakers who stuttered (n = 13; 11 males) and by age- and gender-matched, normally fluent control participants.

Results The results did not support these hypotheses. The results showed that although there were significantly fewer PIs in the speech of the speakers who stuttered (probably because of their slower speaking rate), there was no significant difference between the PI distributions of both speaker groups. This was also true for comparisons between the stutter-free speech of the affected speakers and matched periods of speech produced by the control participants. The PI distributions from both groups were highly correlated.

Conclusion The null hypothesis findings are discussed in relation to speech–motor- and neurologic-systems explanations for the fluency-inducing effects of reducing short PIs in the speech of individuals who stutter.

Acknowledgments
This study was conducted with support of a faculty research grant awarded to the second author by the Faculty Research Committee of the University of California, Santa Barbara. We thank Allison Grant, Irene Seybold, and Melanie Gomez for their assistance with the stuttering and phonated intervals measurement reliability analysis. We are also grateful for the advice given by Rebecca Zwick and Thomas Wickens with respect to the chi-square analyses. The responsibility for the analyses themselves is ours alone. Last, thanks are given to Janis Ingham for her careful editing of the manuscript.
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