Repair or Violation Detection? Pre-Attentive Processing Strategies of Phonotactic Illegality Demonstrated on the Constraint of g-Deletion in German Purpose Effects of categorical phonotactic knowledge on pre-attentive speech processing were investigated by presenting illegal speech input that violated a phonotactic constraint in German called “g-deletion.” The present study aimed to extend previous findings of automatic processing of phonotactic violations and to investigate the role of stimulus context in triggering ... Research Article
Research Article  |   June 01, 2016
Repair or Violation Detection? Pre-Attentive Processing Strategies of Phonotactic Illegality Demonstrated on the Constraint of g-Deletion in German
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Johanna Steinberg
    Institute of Psychology, University of Leipzig, Germany
  • Thomas Konstantin Jacobsen
    Experimental Psychology Unit, Helmut Schmidt University/University of the Federal Armed Forces Hamburg, Germany
  • Thomas Jacobsen
    Experimental Psychology Unit, Helmut Schmidt University/University of the Federal Armed Forces Hamburg, Germany
  • 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 Johanna Steinberg: j.steinberg@uni-leipzig.de
  • Editor: Nancy Tye-Murray
    Editor: Nancy Tye-Murray×
  • Associate Editor: Suzanne Purdy
    Associate Editor: Suzanne Purdy×
Article Information
Hearing / Research Articles
Research Article   |   June 01, 2016
Repair or Violation Detection? Pre-Attentive Processing Strategies of Phonotactic Illegality Demonstrated on the Constraint of g-Deletion in German
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 2016, Vol. 59, 557-571. doi:10.1044/2015_JSLHR-H-15-0062
History: Received February 12, 2015 , Revised August 1, 2015 , Accepted October 11, 2015
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 2016, Vol. 59, 557-571. doi:10.1044/2015_JSLHR-H-15-0062
History: Received February 12, 2015; Revised August 1, 2015; Accepted October 11, 2015
Web of Science® Times Cited: 1

Purpose Effects of categorical phonotactic knowledge on pre-attentive speech processing were investigated by presenting illegal speech input that violated a phonotactic constraint in German called “g-deletion.” The present study aimed to extend previous findings of automatic processing of phonotactic violations and to investigate the role of stimulus context in triggering either an automatic phonotactic repair or a detection of the violation.

Method The mismatch negativity event-related potential component was obtained in 2 identical cross-sectional experiments with speaker variation and 16 healthy adult participants each. Four pseudowords were used as stimuli, 3 of them phonotactically legal and 1 illegal. Stimuli were contrasted pairwise in passive oddball conditions and presented binaurally via headphones. Results were analyzed by means of mixed design analyses of variance.

Results Phonotactically illegal stimuli were found to be processed differently compared to legal ones. Results indicate evidence for both automatic repair and detection of the phonotactic violation depending on the linguistic context the illegal stimulus was embedded in.

Conclusions These findings corroborate notions that categorical phonotactic knowledge is activated and applied even in the absence of attention. Thus, our findings contribute to the general understanding of sublexical phonological processing and may be of use for further developing speech recognition models.

Acknowledgments
This work was supported by the Priority Programme 1234 of the German Research Foundation (grant JA1009/10-2) to Thomas Jacobsen and Hubert Truckenbrodt. The authors are grateful to Jana Burock, Susan Beudt, Johannes Frey, Svantje Kähler, Aquiles Luna-Rodriguez, Jonathan Manske, Falco Walther, Mike Wendt, and Lena Zielonka for technical help and valuable comments.
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