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

Barcelona, Spain
August 3-9, 2003

Syllable Retrieval vs. Online Assembly: fMRI Examination of the Syllabary

Jörg Mayer (1), Hermann Ackermann (2), Grzegorz Dogil (3), Michael Erb (2), Wolfgang Grodd (2)

(1) University of Potsdam, Germany
(2) University of Tübingen, Germany
(3) Universität Stuttgart, Germany

The syllabary, a knowledge base which is accessed by the speaker during phonetic encoding, comprises gestural scores of frequent syllables of a language. It is a crucial part of the direct route of phonetic implementation of an utterance. Psycholinguistic evidence shows that the direct route is faster and more accurate than the assembly of syllables from gestural atoms (indirect route). We present preliminary results of a fMRI study aimed to test the neuro-cognitive differences between the two ways of phonetic encoding. The analysis of functional imaging data from one subject shows that access to the syllabary during speech production activates an additional region in the left frontal part of the brain.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Mayer, Jörg / Ackermann, Hermann / Dogil, Grzegorz / Erb, Michael / Grodd, Wolfgang (2003): "Syllable retrieval vs. online assembly: fMRI examination of the syllabary", In ICPhS-15, 2541-2544.