Sixth International Conference on Spoken Language Processing
(ICSLP 2000)

Beijing, China
October 16-20, 2000

Differentiation in Tone Production in Cantonese-Speaking Hearing-Impaired Children

Johanna Barry (1), Peter Blamey (1), Kathy Lee (2), Dilys Cheung (2)

(1) Department of Otolaryngology, The University of Melbourne, Australia
(2) Division of Otorhinolaryngology, Department of Surgery, Chinese University of Hong Kong, Prince of Wales Hospital Shatin, Hong Kong

This paper describes results from a pilot study investigating the process of tone development and differentiation in three hearing-impaired children who received a 22-electrode Cochlear Implant (CI). The hypothesis to be tested is that subsequent to receiving an implant, the children will begin to acquire a tonal inventory and will acquire a full tonal inventory more rapidly than they acquire a full vowel inventory. The hypothesis was tested by plotting F0 offset versus F0 onset for production of three tones (high level, (T1), high-rising (T2) and low-falling (T4)) pre- and post-implant. Results were compared with phonetic transcriptions of the same materials. Contrary to expectation, rate of acquisition of the tonal inventory is found to be slower than the rate of development of the vowel inventory for these children. The two children who acquired specific tones in the time frame of the study acquired them in the order, T1 before T2 while none of the children acquired T4.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Barry, Johanna / Blamey, Peter / Lee, Kathy / Cheung, Dilys (2000): "Differentiation in tone production in cantonese-speaking hearing-impaired children", In ICSLP-2000, vol.1, 669-672.