Affective Properties of Mothers' Speech to Infants With Hearing Impairment and Cochlear Implants Purpose The affective properties of infant-directed speech influence the attention of infants with normal hearing to speech sounds. This study explored the affective quality of maternal speech to infants with hearing impairment (HI) during the 1st year after cochlear implantation as compared to speech to infants with normal hearing. ... Research Article
Research Article  |   June 01, 2015
Affective Properties of Mothers' Speech to Infants With Hearing Impairment and Cochlear Implants
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Maria V. Kondaurova
    Indiana University–Purdue University Indianapolis
  • Tonya R. Bergeson
    Indiana University–Purdue University Indianapolis
  • Huiping Xu
    Indiana University–Purdue University Indianapolis
  • Christine Kitamura
    The MARCS Institute, University of Western Sydney, Australia
  • Disclosure: The authors have declared that no competing interests existed at the time of publication.
    Disclosure: The authors have declared that no competing interests existed at the time of publication.×
  • Correspondence to Maria V. Kondaurova: mkondaur@iupui.edu
  • Editor: Jody Kreiman
    Editor: Jody Kreiman×
  • Associate Editor: Ewa Jacewicz
    Associate Editor: Ewa Jacewicz×
Article Information
Speech, Voice & Prosodic Disorders / Hearing Disorders / Hearing Aids, Cochlear Implants & Assistive Technology / Speech / Research Articles
Research Article   |   June 01, 2015
Affective Properties of Mothers' Speech to Infants With Hearing Impairment and Cochlear Implants
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 2015, Vol. 58, 590-600. doi:10.1044/2015_JSLHR-S-14-0095
History: Received April 2, 2014 , Revised October 1, 2014 , Accepted January 21, 2015
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 2015, Vol. 58, 590-600. doi:10.1044/2015_JSLHR-S-14-0095
History: Received April 2, 2014; Revised October 1, 2014; Accepted January 21, 2015

Purpose The affective properties of infant-directed speech influence the attention of infants with normal hearing to speech sounds. This study explored the affective quality of maternal speech to infants with hearing impairment (HI) during the 1st year after cochlear implantation as compared to speech to infants with normal hearing.

Method Mothers of infants with HI and mothers of infants with normal hearing matched by age (NH-AM) or hearing experience (NH-EM) were recorded playing with their infants during 3 sessions over a 12-month period. Speech samples of 25 s were low-pass filtered, leaving intonation but not speech information intact. Sixty adults rated the stimuli along 5 scales: positive/negative affect and intention to express affection, to encourage attention, to comfort/soothe, and to direct behavior.

Results Low-pass filtered speech to HI and NH-EM groups was rated as more positive, affective, and comforting compared with the such speech to the NH-AM group. Speech to infants with HI and with NH-AM was rated as more directive than speech to the NH-EM group. Mothers decreased affective qualities in speech to all infants but increased directive qualities in speech to infants with NH-EM over time.

Conclusions Mothers fine-tune communicative intent in speech to their infant's developmental stage. They adjust affective qualities to infants' hearing experience rather than to chronological age but adjust directive qualities of speech to the chronological age of their infants.

Acknowledgments
This research was supported by National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders Grant R01 DC 008581 to Dr. T. R. Bergeson. We thank Crystal Spann, Neil Wright, Carrie Hansel, Kabreea York, and Shannon Aranjo for their help in recording and analyzing mothers' speech and especially the families for their participation in the study.
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