Effects of Length and Linguistic Complexity on Temporal Acoustic Measures in Apraxia of Speech The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of varying length and linguistic utterance types on temporal acoustic characteristics of the imitative speech of apraxic speakers. Vowel duration and two between-word segment durations were examined during the production of three response types: words, word-strings, and sentences. Three length ... Research Article
Research Article  |   October 01, 1996
Effects of Length and Linguistic Complexity on Temporal Acoustic Measures in Apraxia of Speech
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Edythe A. Strand
    Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences University of Washington Seattle
  • Malcolm R. McNeil
    Department of Communication Disorders University of Pittsburgh Pittsburgh, PA
  • Contact author: Edythe A. Strand, PhD, Department of Speech and Hearing Science, Box 354875, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98105. Email: strand@u.washington.edu
Article Information
Speech, Voice & Prosodic Disorders / Apraxia of Speech & Childhood Apraxia of Speech / Hearing & Speech Perception / Acoustics / Speech, Voice & Prosody / Speech / Research Articles
Research Article   |   October 01, 1996
Effects of Length and Linguistic Complexity on Temporal Acoustic Measures in Apraxia of Speech
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, October 1996, Vol. 39, 1018-1033. doi:10.1044/jshr.3905.1018
History: Received September 18, 1995 , Accepted April 30, 1996
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, October 1996, Vol. 39, 1018-1033. doi:10.1044/jshr.3905.1018
History: Received September 18, 1995; Accepted April 30, 1996

The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of varying length and linguistic utterance types on temporal acoustic characteristics of the imitative speech of apraxic speakers. Vowel duration and two between-word segment durations were examined during the production of three response types: words, word-strings, and sentences. Three length conditions were studied in words, two length conditions for word-strings, and three length conditions for sentences, yielding eight experimental conditions. Apraxic speakers exhibited significantly longer vowel and between-word segment durations than control speakers in all conditions. Apraxic speakers consistently produced longer vowel and between-word segment durations in sentence contexts than in word contexts. Further, intrasubject and intersubject variability for between-word segment durations were substantially greater for the apraxic speakers in sentences compared to word conditions, whereas control speakers exhibited greater homogeneity in sentence production. The differences in duration and variability in sentence production versus word or word-string production imply different mechanisms for executing motor programs for varying linguistic stimuli.

Acknowledgments
The authors would like to thank Bruce Smith, Gary Weismer, Don Robin, and anonymous reviewers for their helpful comments on earlier versions of this manuscript.
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