Spectral analysis of target-appropriate /t/ and /k/ produced by phonologically disordered and normally articulating children

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Date
1994
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Taylor & Francis Health Sciences
Abstract
Previous research (Forrest, Weismer, Hodge, Dinnsen and Elbert, 1990) has shown that some phonologically disordered children differentially mark seemingly homophonous phonemes; however, the resulting contrast may be spectrally distinct from that produced by normally articulating children of the same age. In the present investigation possible sources for these differences between normally articulating and phonologically disordered children's productions of target-appropriate phonemes were pursued. Spectral characteristics of seemingly correct productions of /t/ and /k/ in word-initial position were analysed for four normally articulating and seven phonologically disordered children to assess the effect of recency of acquisition, depth of knowledge of the contrast and/or the effect of a phonological disorder on accuracy and variability of production. Results revealed that children who had acquired the velar-alveolar contrast more recently, and who had incomplete knowledge of that contrast, produced target-appropriate /t/ and /k/ differently from their normally articulating peers and other phonologically disordered children with greater knowledge of the contrast. Further, the phonologically disordered children with incomplete knowledge of the velar-alveolar contrast were less variable than the other phonologically disordered or normally articulating children in the spectral characteristics across repeated productions. Analysis of the spectral characteristics of word-initial /t/ and /k/ at a later point in time indicated similarities between all speaker groups in the spectral parameters that distinguished the velar from the alveolar stop. However, the stability of these parameters across repeated productions decreased for the phonologically disordered children with greater knowledge of the contrast. These effects are related to motor skill development and found to be consistent with previously demonstrated patterns of skill acquisition.
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Keywords
phonology, child phonology, clinical phonology, phonological disorders in children, phonological treatment, Learnability Project, language acquisition
Citation
Forrest, K., Weismer, G., Elbert M., & Dinnsen, D. A. (1994). Spectral analysis of target-appropriate /t/ and /k/ produced by phonologically disordered and normally articulating children. Clinical Linguistics & Phonetics, 8(4), 267-281. PMID: 22320893
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© 1994 Taylor & Francis Ltd.
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