Relationship between the Discrimination of /w-r/ and /t-d/ Continua and the Identification of Distorted /r/ The purpose of this study was to assess the extent to which listeners can perceive intraphonemic differences. In Experiment 1, subjects identified synthesized acoustic tokens of child-like speech that varied in second and third formant (F2 and F3) onset frequencies as /w/, /r/, or distorted /r/ in two conditions: (a) ... Research Article
Research Article  |   June 01, 1988
Relationship between the Discrimination of /w-r/ and /t-d/ Continua and the Identification of Distorted /r/
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Donald J. Sharf
    University of Michigan
  • Ralph N. Ohde
    Vanderbilt University
  • Mark E. Lehman
    University of Michigan
Article Information
Research Articles
Research Article   |   June 01, 1988
Relationship between the Discrimination of /w-r/ and /t-d/ Continua and the Identification of Distorted /r/
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 1988, Vol. 31, 193-206. doi:10.1044/jshr.3102.193
History: Received January 26, 1987 , Accepted July 8, 1987
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 1988, Vol. 31, 193-206. doi:10.1044/jshr.3102.193
History: Received January 26, 1987; Accepted July 8, 1987
Web of Science® Times Cited: 6

The purpose of this study was to assess the extent to which listeners can perceive intraphonemic differences. In Experiment 1, subjects identified synthesized acoustic tokens of child-like speech that varied in second and third formant (F2 and F3) onset frequencies as /w/, /r/, or distorted /r/ in two conditions: (a) with and without feedback of the group response choices, and (b) before and after training to identify the best examples of /w/, /r/, and distorted /r/ based on their identification in the first condition. The results were: (a) some subjects consistently identified distorted /r/ above criterion, and (b) feedback was more effective in increasing distorted /r/ identification than was training. In Experiment 2, the same subjects participated in discrimination tasks using stimuli from a synthesized child /w-r/ continuum that varied in F2 and F3 onsets and from a synthesized adult /t-d/ continuum that varied in preconsonantal vowel duration. The results were: (a perception was not categorical for both continua, (b) little relation was found between distorted-/r/ identification and measures of /w-r/ discrimination, and (c) a high and significant correlation was found between identification of distorted /r/ and within-/d/ discrimination. In Experiment 3, different subjects identified the child manifold stimuli and discriminated stimuli in a synthesized child /w-r/ continuum and in a synthesized adult /t-d/ continuum. The results were: (a) neither /w-r/ or /t-d/ perception was categorical although the former came closer than the latter in terms of individual subject performance, (b) there was a high and significant correlation between distorted-/r/ identification and within-/r/ discrimination of /w-r/ stimuli, and (c) there were high and significant correlations between distorted-/r/identification and mean, cross-category boundary, and within-/t/discrimination of /t-d/ stimuli.

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