Frequencies in Perception and Production Differentially Affect Child Speech Purpose Frequent sounds and frequent words are both acquired at an earlier age and are produced by children more accurately. Recent research suggests that frequency is not always a facilitative concept, however. Interactions between input frequency in perception and practice frequency in production may limit or inhibit growth. In this ... Research Article
Research Article  |   December 10, 2018
Frequencies in Perception and Production Differentially Affect Child Speech
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Peter T. Richtsmeier
    Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater
  • Amanda K. Good
    Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater
  • 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. ×
  • Amanda K. Good is now a Speech-Language Pathologist at Canyon Breeze Elementary School, Avondale, AZ.
    Amanda K. Good is now a Speech-Language Pathologist at Canyon Breeze Elementary School, Avondale, AZ.×
  • Correspondence to Peter T. Richtsmeier: prichtsmeier@yahoo.com
  • Editor-in-Chief: Julie Liss
    Editor-in-Chief: Julie Liss×
  • Editor: Bharath Chandrasekaran
    Editor: Bharath Chandrasekaran×
Article Information
Development / Attention, Memory & Executive Functions / Speech, Voice & Prosody / Speech / Research Articles
Research Article   |   December 10, 2018
Frequencies in Perception and Production Differentially Affect Child Speech
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, December 2018, Vol. 61, 2854-2868. doi:10.1044/2018_JSLHR-S-17-0391
History: Received October 17, 2017 , Revised April 9, 2018 , Accepted July 16, 2018
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, December 2018, Vol. 61, 2854-2868. doi:10.1044/2018_JSLHR-S-17-0391
History: Received October 17, 2017; Revised April 9, 2018; Accepted July 16, 2018

Purpose Frequent sounds and frequent words are both acquired at an earlier age and are produced by children more accurately. Recent research suggests that frequency is not always a facilitative concept, however. Interactions between input frequency in perception and practice frequency in production may limit or inhibit growth. In this study, we consider how a range of input frequencies affect production accuracy and referent identification.

Method Thirty-three typically developing 3- and 4-year-olds participated in a novel word-learning task. In the initial test block, participants heard nonwords 1, 3, 6, or 10 times—produced either by a single talker or by multiple talkers—and then produced them immediately. In a posttest, participants heard all nonwords just once and then produced them. Referent identification was probed in between the test and posttest.

Results Production accuracy was most clearly facilitated by an input frequency of 3 during the test block. Input frequency interacted with production practice, and the facilitative effect of input frequency did not carry over to the posttest. Talker variability did not affect accuracy, regardless of input frequency. The referent identification results did not favor talker variability or a particular input frequency value, but participants were able to learn the words at better than chance levels.

Conclusions The results confirm that the input can be facilitative, but input frequency and production practice interact in ways that limit input-based learning, and more input is not always better. Future research on this interaction may allow clinicians to optimize various types of frequency commonly used during therapy.

Acknowledgments
The authors wish to thank Anna Bostian, Shie Kantor, and Kelsey Mueggenborg for help in managing the participants.
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