Title page for ETD etd-08072003-152242

Document Type Master's Dissertation
Author Theron, Karin
Email karinthe@mweb.co.za
URN etd-08072003-152242
Document Title Temporal aspects of speech production in bilingual speakers with neurogenic speech disorders
Degree DPhil (Communication Pathology)
Department Communication Pathology
Advisor Name Title
Prof A van der Merwe
Prof D A Robin Committee Co-Chair
  • speech and language processing
  • processing demands
  • utterance onset duration
  • acoustic analysis
  • phonemic paraphasia
  • utterance duration
  • temporal control
  • linguistic-symbolic planning
  • speech motor control
  • motor planning
  • apraxia of speech
  • speech production
  • vowel duration
  • contextual factors
  • token-to-token variability
  • temporal parameters
  • voice onset time
Date 2003-05-15
Availability unrestricted

The present study is the first to examine the effect of first versus second language (L1 versus L2) speech production on specific temporal parameters of speech in bilingual speakers with neurogenic speech disorders. Three persons with apraxia of speech (AOS), three with phonemic paraphasia (PP) and five normal speaking participants were included as subjects in the study. Subjects were required to read phonemically similar L1 and L2 target utterances in a carrier phrase, five times each, at a normal and fast speaking rate, respectively. This rendered four speaking contexts that included speech production in L1 at either a normal (L1NR) or fast speaking rate (L1FR) and speech production in L2 at either a normal (L2NR) or fast speaking rate (L2FR). Acoustic analysis of on-target productions involved measurement of utterance onset duration, vowel duration, utterance duration and voice onset time.

Results revealed that in normal speakers, speech production in L2 results in greater token-to-token variability than in L1. However, token-to-token variability in the experimental subjects did not tend to increase whilst speaking in L2, most probably because these subjects generally decreased their speaking rate in this context, resulting in more consistent production. The subjects with AOS and PP seemed to be influenced by the increased processing demands of speaking in L2 to a greater extent than the normal speakers, in that they more frequently experienced difficulty with durational adjustments (decreasing duration in the fast speaking rate) in L2 than in L1. Furthermore, the subjects with AOS or PP also exhibited a greater extent of durational adjustment in L1 than in L2. The durations of most of the subjects with either AOS or PP tended to differ from those of the normal group to a greater extent in L2FR that was hypothesized to be the most demanding speaking context for these subjects.

The longer than normal durations and greater than normal token-to-token variability in the subjects with either AOS or PP imply the presence of a motor control deficit. The extent of the motor control deficit appears to be more severe in AOS than in PP as is evident from the finding that the subjects with AOS generally exhibited longer durations and greater token-to-token variability than the subjects with PP. The pattern of breakdown in respect of different parameters and utterance groups also differed between subjects with AOS and PP. The nature of the disorder in AOS and PP thus appears to be both quantitatively and qualitatively different. Regarding measurement of the different temporal parameters, voice onset time appears to be less subject to the influence of L2 than the other measured temporal parameters.

The results of this study imply that bilingual AOS is as much a reality as bilingual aphasia. Furthermore, the results underscore the importance of taking contextual factors, specifically L1 versus L2, into account when compiling assessment and treatment procedures for persons with either AOS or PP, since speech production in L2 appears to be motorically more difficult than in L1 for persons with neurogenic involvement. The significance of the results is discussed with reference to the influence of speech production in L2 on temporal control and the underlying nature of AOS and PP with regard to theories of speech sensorimotor control.

Copyright 2003, University of Pretoria. All rights reserved. The copyright in this work vests in the University of Pretoria. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, without the prior written permission of the University of Pretoria

Please cite as follows:

Theron, K, 2003, Temporal aspects of speech production in bilingual speakers with neurogenic speech disorders, DPhil thesis, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, viewed yymmdd < http://upetd.up.ac.za/thesis/available/etd-08072003-152242/>

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  00front.pdf 288.00 Kb 00:01:20 00:00:41 00:00:36 00:00:18 00:00:01
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  12appendixC.pdf 236.60 Kb 00:01:05 00:00:33 00:00:29 00:00:14 00:00:01
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  16appendixG.pdf 269.42 Kb 00:01:14 00:00:38 00:00:33 00:00:16 00:00:01

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