15th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences (ICPhS-15)

Barcelona, Spain
August 3-9, 2003

Cross-Subject Relations Between Measures of Vowel Production and Perception

Joseph S. Perkell (1), Frank H. Guenther (2), Harlan Lane (3), Melanie L. Matthies (2), Ellen Stockmann (1), Mark K. Tiede (4), Majid Zandipour (1)

(1) Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA
(2) Boston University, USA
(3) Northeastern University, USA
(4) Haskins Laboratories, USA

This study addresses the hypothesis that the more accurately a speaker discriminates a vowel contrast, the more distinctly the speaker produces that contrast. Measures of speech production and perception were collected from 19 young adult speakers of American English. In the production experiment, speakers repeated the words cod, cud, who'd and hood in a carrier phrase at normal and fast rates. Articulatory movements and the associated acoustic signal were recorded, yielding measures of contrast distance between /ɑ/ and /ʌ/ and between /u/ and /ʊ/. In the perception experiment, sets of seven stimuli ranging from cod to cud and who'd to hood were synthesized, based on natural productions by one male and one female speaker. The continua were presented to each of the speakers in labeling and discrimination tasks. Consistent with the hypothesis, measures of produced vowel contrast were correlated across subjects with a measure of vowel discrimination. This finding is compatible with a model in which articulatory movements for vowels are planned primarily in auditory space.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Perkell, Joseph S. / Guenther, Frank H. / Lane, Harlan / Matthies, Melanie L. / Stockmann, Ellen / Tiede, Mark K. / Zandipour, Majid (2003): "Cross-subject relations between measures of vowel production and perception", In ICPhS-15, 439-442.