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Effects of peripheral auditory adaptation on the discrimination of speech sounds
Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics. (Talspråksutveckling)ORCID iD: 0000-0002-7980-3601
1987 (English)Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This study investigates perceptual effects of discharge rate adaptation in the auditory-nerve fibers.

Discrimination tests showed that brief synthetic stimuli with stationary formants and periodic source were better discriminated when they had an abrupt as opposed to a gradual onset (non-adapted vs adapted condition). This effect was not observed for corresponding stimuli with noise source.

Discrimination among synthetic /da/ stimuli (abrupt onsets) was worse than among /ad/ stimuli when the respective onset and offset frequencies of the second formant (F2) were varied. Similar results were obtained for /ba/ and /ab/. The low discrimination rate in consonant-vowel stimuli (CV) was explained in terms of sensory smearing of spectral information due to rapid formant transitions. Discrimination improved when the smearing effect was reduced by holding the onset formant pattern over a certain period of time of about 1 6ms. The relatively high discrimination score for the VC stimuli was explained by residual masking; extending the VC offset did not improve discrimination.

Discrimination of place of articulation in CV syllables was examined in the light of sensory smearing. Two continua of /bu-du/ and /ba-da/ utterances were used in discrimination and identification experiments. It was observed that the discrimination peak for /Cu/ was displaced from the /b/-/d/ boundary, towards a flat F2 transition, suggesting that optimal place discrimination is related to the stability of the auditory representations generated at onset. This result is discussed in relation to current views of categorical perception.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Department of Linguistics, Stockholm University , 1987. , 94 p.
, Phonetic experimental research at the Institute of Linguistics, ISSN 0282-6690 ; 6
Keyword [en]
Adaptation, discrimination, categorical perception
National Category
General Language Studies and Linguistics
Research subject
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-37511ISBN: 91-7146-373-9OAI: diva2:302622
Public defence
1987-12-18, hörsal C 6, Universitetsvägen 10 C, Stockholm, 10:00 (English)
För att köpa boken skicka en beställning till To order the book send an e-mail to from: 2010-03-08 Created: 2010-03-08 Last updated: 2014-05-26Bibliographically approved

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