Sixth International Conference on Spoken Language Processing
(ICSLP 2000)

Beijing, China
October 16-20, 2000

The Production of Real and Non-Words in Adult Stutterers and Non-Stutterers: An Acoustic Study

S. P. Whiteside, R. A. Varley, T. Phillips, H. Garety

Department of Human Communication Sciences, University of Sheffield, UK

Dual-route models of speech production suggest that highfrequency forms are encoded in different ways from lowfrequency and novel forms [1, 2, 3]. There is some evidence to suggest that lexical status may have some influence on stuttering behaviour, with higher incidences of stuttering being observed for low frequency words [4, 5]. This paper reports on a study, which investigated the production of high and low frequency words, and non-words in two groups of young adult male speakers. The first, comprised a group of speakers with stuttering (N=4), and the second, speakers without stuttering (N=5). Three repetitions were elicited from each subject via a repetition task and recorded onto DAT. These data were subsequently digitised at a sampling rate of 20 kHz. Two parameters were measured (in milliseconds) from the digitised samples using a KAY Elemetrics Computerised Speech Lab: 1) Response latencies (time taken to respond to a stimulus); and 2) word durations (duration of utterance). We report here on the first repetition of the high/low frequency and non-words.

The results are presented and discussed with reference to implications for the production of frequent and novel forms, motor speech learning, and how motor speech disorders such as stuttering can shed some light on speech encoding mechanisms.


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  2. Varley, R. A. and Whiteside, S. P. "What is the underlying impairment in acquired apraxia of speech?", Aphasiology. In Press.
  3. Whiteside, S. P. and Varley, R. A. "A new conceptualisation of apraxia of speech: a synthesis of evidence", Cortex, 34, 1998, 221-231.
  4. Hubbard, CP, Prins, D. "Word familiarity, syllabic stress pattern, and stuttering", Journal of Speech and Hearing Research, 37, 1994, 564-571.
  5. Peters, H. F. M., Hulstijn, W. and Van Lieshout, P. H. H. M. "Recent developments in speech motor research into stuttering", Folia Phoniatrica et Logopaedica, 52, 2000, 103-119

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Whiteside, S. P. / Varley, R. A. / Phillips, T. / Garety, H. (2000): "The production of real and non-words in adult stutterers and non-stutterers: an acoustic study", In ICSLP-2000, vol.2, 515-518.