ERIC Number: ED047307
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1970-Sep
Reference Count: 0
The Effect of Contextual Influence on Children's Discrimination of Initial Consonants. Report from the Project on Basic Pre-Reading Skills: Identification and Improvement.
Rudegeair, Robert E.
Acoustic studies have shown that phonetic context can have substantial effects on the cues associated with a given speech sound. The present study investigates whether or not modifications in the acoustic correlates of initial stops and fricatives due to the following vowel can affect phonemic decision processes. In the first of two experiments, C-V syllables comprised of a stop plus a vowel were paired and presented to 36 first-grade subjects in a discrimination task; in the second experiment, fricatives were involved instead of stops. The results for Experiment I showed that subjects discriminated the stops significantly better in long vowel contexts than in short vowel contexts. Results for Experiment II showed that discriminations of place contrasts involving /s/ or /z/ as well as the homorganic voicing contrasts were not subject to differential vowel effects. Discrimination of /f/ from voiceless /th/ and /v/ from voiced /th/, however, were significantly better in back vowel contexts than in front vowel contexts. Discriminations of /f/ from voiceless /th/ and /v/ from voiced /th/ were found to be significantly more difficult than the discriminations of the other fricative contrasts. Results show that effects of coarticulation affect discrimination probabilities. These findings question theories of one-to-one correspondence between the acoustic segment and the sound perceived. (Author/AMM)
Publication Type: N/A
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Education (DHEW), Washington, DC. Bureau of Research.
Authoring Institution: Wisconsin Univ., Madison. Research and Development Center for Cognitive Learning.