ERIC Number: EJ1143735
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016-Jun
Abstractor: As Provided
Effects of Enriched Auditory Experience on Infants' Speech Perception during the First Year of Life
Zhao, T. Christina; Kuhl, Patricia K.
Prospects: Quarterly Review of Comparative Education, v46 n2 p235-247 Jun 2016
Infants rapidly learn language in their home environments. Between 6 and 12 months of age, infants' ability to process the building blocks of speech (i.e., phonetic information) develops quickly, and this ability predicts later language development. Typically, developing infants in a monolingual language environment rapidly tune in to the phonetic information of their native language, while their sensitivity to nonnative phonetic information starts to decrease. Yet, enriched experience to a new language during this time significantly improves infants' sensitivity to the sound contrasts used in that language when compared to a control group without exposure to the new language. More recently, a new study examined another type of enriched auditory experience--musical experience--to determine its effect not only on music processing but also on phonetic processing. Results showed that a 1-month laboratory music intervention focusing on rhythm learning enhanced 9-month-old infants' neural processing not only for music but also for speech. Together, these results suggest that these enriched auditory experiences in infancy may improve infants' general auditory pattern-detection skills and their sensitivity to phonetic information.
Descriptors: Infants, Speech Communication, Auditory Perception, Control Groups, Phonetics, Language Processing, Music, Intervention, Cognitive Processes, Language Acquisition
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
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