9th Annual Conference of the International Speech Communication Association

Brisbane, Australia
September 22-26, 2008

Infants' Native and Nonnative Tone Perception

Karen Mattock

Lancaster University, UK

Infants' native and nonnative tone perception was investigated in three studies. In Study 1, 6- and 9-month-old English (non-tone) and Chinese (tone) infants were tested for discrimination of Thai tones in a training procedure. Study 2 examined English and French infants' Thai tone perception in a more natural looking/listening task. Study 3 investigated English infants' discrimination of Mandarin tones. The findings provide robust evidence for the reorganization of tone perception as a function of language experience. Age-related decline in nonnative tone discrimination was found for English and French infants. Chinese infants showed stable tone perception across age.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Mattock, Karen (2008): "Infants' native and nonnative tone perception", In INTERSPEECH-2008, 621.