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ERIC Number: EJ1109199
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016-Sep
Pages: 18
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0305-0009
Children's Identification of Questions from Rising Terminal Pitch
Saindon, Mathieu R.; Trehub, Sandra E.; Schellenberg, E. Glenn; van Lieshout, Pascal
Journal of Child Language, v43 n5 p1174-1191 Sep 2016
Young children are slow to master conventional intonation patterns in their "yes/no" questions, which may stem from imperfect understanding of the links between terminal pitch contours and pragmatic intentions. In Experiment 1, five to ten-year-old children and adults were required to judge utterances as questions or statements on the basis of intonation alone. Children eight years of age or younger performed above chance levels but less accurately than adult listeners. To ascertain whether the verbal content of utterances interfered with young children's attention to the relevant acoustic cues, low-pass filtered versions of the same utterances were presented to children and adults in Experiment 2. Low-pass filtering reduced performance comparably for all age groups, perhaps because such filtering reduced the salience of critical pitch cues. Young children's difficulty in differentiating declarative questions from statements is not attributable to basic perceptual difficulties but rather to absent or unstable intonation categories.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A