An On-Line Imitative Test of Speech-Pattern Contrast Perception (OlimSpac): Developmental Effects in Normally Hearing Children PurposeThe goal was to assess the effects of maturation and phonological development on performance, by normally hearing children, on an imitative test of auditory capacity (On-Line Imitative Test of Speech-Pattern Contrast Perception [OlimSpac]; Boothroyd, Eisenberg, & Martinez, 2006; Eisenberg, Martinez, & Boothroyd, 2003, 2007).MethodThirty-four hearing children (aged between 1;8 [years;months] ... Article
Article  |   June 01, 2010
An On-Line Imitative Test of Speech-Pattern Contrast Perception (OlimSpac): Developmental Effects in Normally Hearing Children
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Arthur Boothroyd
    House Ear Institute, Los Angeles, CA
  • Laurie S. Eisenberg
    House Ear Institute, Los Angeles, CA
  • Amy S. Martinez
    House Ear Institute, Los Angeles, CA
  • Contact author: Arthur Boothroyd, San Diego State University, Department of Speech, Language, Hearing Sciences, 2550 Brant Street, San Diego, CA 92101. E-mail: aboothroyd@cox.net.
Article Information
Hearing & Speech Perception / Speech, Voice & Prosody / Hearing
Article   |   June 01, 2010
An On-Line Imitative Test of Speech-Pattern Contrast Perception (OlimSpac): Developmental Effects in Normally Hearing Children
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 2010, Vol. 53, 531-542. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2009/08-0260)
History: Received December 17, 2008 , Revised July 30, 2009 , Accepted December 30, 2009
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 2010, Vol. 53, 531-542. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2009/08-0260)
History: Received December 17, 2008; Revised July 30, 2009; Accepted December 30, 2009
Web of Science® Times Cited: 7

PurposeThe goal was to assess the effects of maturation and phonological development on performance, by normally hearing children, on an imitative test of auditory capacity (On-Line Imitative Test of Speech-Pattern Contrast Perception [OlimSpac]; Boothroyd, Eisenberg, & Martinez, 2006; Eisenberg, Martinez, & Boothroyd, 2003, 2007).

MethodThirty-four hearing children (aged between 1;8 [years;months] and 6;7) were asked to imitate nonword utterances. Responses were evaluated by a blinded listener in an 8-alternative forced-choice task, giving information on the children’s ability to convey, by imitation, information about 6 binary phonemic contrasts.

ResultsFour children declined participation. Among 30 children aged 2;7 or older, performance improved significantly with age and varied with contrast. All children 3 years of age or older attained passing scores (7 or 8 correct responses in 8 binary trials) on at least 5 of the 6 contrasts. Post-alveolar consonant place was the contrast most often failed.

ConclusionsWhen evaluated on a pass/fail basis, normally hearing children 3 years of age or older are likely to demonstrate auditory perception of most phonemic contrasts using this imitative test. Phonological development and other task-related factors have only a modest effect on performance by normally hearing children after 3 years of age. The effects of hearing loss, hearing age, sensory assistance, and listening experience in children with hearing loss remain to be determined.

Acknowledgments
A portion of these data was reported earlier in Eisenberg, Martinez, and Boothroyd’s (2007)  study. This work was funded by National Institutes of Health (NIH) Grant DC006238 to the House Ear Institute (Los Angeles, CA). Development of the prototype of OlimSpac was supported by NIH Grant DC004433. Jessica Barlow provided valuable input to this article.
Order a Subscription
Pay Per View
Entire Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research content & archive
24-hour access
This Article
24-hour access