Sixth International Conference on Spoken Language Processing
(ICSLP 2000)

Beijing, China
October 16-20, 2000

Neural Plasticity Revealed in Perceptual Training of a Japanese Adult Listener to Learn American /l-r/ Contrast: A Whole-Head Magnetoencephalography Study

Yang Zhang (1), Patricia K. Kuhl (1), Toshiaki Imada (2,3), Paul Iverson (4), John Pruitt (5), Makoto Kotani (6), Erica Stevens (1)

(1) Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences, University of Washington, Seattle, WA, USA
(2) NTT Communication Science Laboratories Laboratory, Japan
(3) Real World Computing Partnership, Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corporation, Atsugi-shi, Kanagawa, Japan
(4) Department of Phonetics & Linguistics, University College London, England, UK
(5) Microsoft Corporation, Redmond, WA, USA
(6) Tokyo Denki University, Tokyo, Japan

In this study, behavioral and brain measures were taken to assess the effects of training a Japanese adult subject to perceptually distinguish English /l/ and //. Behavioral data showed significant improvement in identifying both trained and untrained speech stimuli. Correspondingly, neuromagnetic results showed enhanced mismatch field responses in the left hemisphere and reduced activities in the right hemisphere. This pattern of neural plasticity was not observed for truncated nonspeech stimuli.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Zhang, Yang / Kuhl, Patricia K. / Imada, Toshiaki / Iverson, Paul / Pruitt, John / Kotani, Makoto / Stevens, Erica (2000): "Neural plasticity revealed in perceptual training of a Japanese adult listener to learn american /l-r/ contrast: a whole-head magnetoencephalography study", In ICSLP-2000, vol.3, 953-956.