Auditory-Visual Speech Processing (AVSP) 2011
September 1-2, 2011
Do Infants Detect A-V Articulator Congruency for Non-Native Click Consonants?
Catherine T. Best (1,2), Christian Kroos (1), Julia Irwin (2,3)
(1) MARCS Auditory Laboratories, University of Western Sydney, Australia
(2) Haskins Laboratories, New Haven CT, USA
(3) Southern Connecticut State University, New Haven CT, USA
In a prior study infants habituated to an audio-only labial or
alveolar, native English voiceless or non-native ejective stop,
then saw silent videos of stops at each place . 4-month-olds
gazed more at congruent videos for native and non-native
stops. 11-month-olds preferred congruence for native stops but
incongruence for non-native ejectives, suggesting language
experience biases but does not block detection of non-native
A.V speech relations. But as English adults perceive
ejectives as deviant stops , we asked whether infants detect
A.V congruence in non-native phones adults hear as
nonspeech, i.e., click consonants [3-6]. 4-month-olds preferred
incongruency; 11-month-olds showed no preference. We posit
that infants prefer A.V congruency for phones heard as
native-like speech; prefer incongruency for phones heard as
speech that deviates from native segments; notice extreme
deviance earlier (clicks: 4 mo; ejectives: 11 mo); and later
treat very deviant phones as discriminable nonspeech sounds
[3, 4] that are unrelated to visual speech. Results are at odds
with existing AV models, but may be handled by a hybrid of
Amodal Articulatory and Intersensory Narrowing views.
Index Terms. infant speech perception, cross-modal,
articulatory phonology, non-native contrasts, click consonants
- Best, C. T., Kroos, C. H. and Irwin, J. Now I see what you
said: Infant sensitivity to place congruency between audio-only
and silent-video presentations of native and non-native
consonants, Proceedings of AVSP (AudioVisual Speech
Perception). Hakone, Japan, Sept-Oct., 2010.
- Best, C. T., McRoberts, G. W., and Goodell, E. American
listeners' perception of non-native consonant contrasts varying
in perceptual assimilation to English phonology, J. Acoust.
Soc. America, 1097: 775-794, 2001.
- Best, C. T., McRoberts, G. W., and Sithole, N. M.,
Examination of perceptual reorganization for non-native
speech contrasts: Zulu click discrimination by English-speaking
adults and infants, J. Exp. Psych.: Human Perception &
Performance, 14:45-60, 1988.
- Best, C. T., McRoberts, G. W., LaFleur, R., and Silver-
Isenstadt, J. Divergent developmental patterns for infants
perception of two non-native consonant contrasts, Infant
Behavior and Devel., 18:339-350, 1995.
- Best, C. T., & Avery, R. A., Left hemisphere advantage for
click consonants is determined by linguistic significance,
Psych. Science, 10:65-69, 1999.
- Brancazio, L., Best, C. T., and Fowler, C. A., Visual
influences on perception of speech and nonspeech vocal-tract
events, Lang. and Speech, 49:21-53, 2006
Best, Catherine T. / Kroos, Christian / Irwin, Julia (2011):
"Do infants detect a-v articulator congruency for non-native click consonants?",
In AVSP-2011, 9-14.