8th International Conference on Spoken Language Processing

Jeju Island, Korea
October 4-8, 2004

The Role of Prosodic Cues in Word Segmentation of Korean

Sahyang Kim

University of California, Los Angeles, USA

The current study investigates the degree to which various prosodic cues at the boundaries of a prosodic phrase in Korean (Accentual Phrase) contributed to word segmentation. Since most phonological words in Korean are produced as one AP, it was hypothesized that the detection of acoustic cues at AP boundaries would facilitate word segmentation. The prosodic characteristics of Korean APs include initial strengthening at the beginning of the phrase and pitch rise and final lengthening at the end. A perception experiment revealed that the cues that conform to the above-mentioned prosodic characteristics of Korean facilitated listeners' word segmentation. Results also showed that duration and amplitude cues were more helpful in segmentation than pitch. Further, the results showed that a pitch cue that did not conform to the Korean AP interfered with segmentation.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Kim, Sahyang (2004): "The role of prosodic cues in word segmentation of Korean", In INTERSPEECH-2004, 3005-3008.