The development of fundamental frequency in babbles and early words of typically developing children and children with hearing impairment: the case of intrinsic vowel pitch. 01/01/2021 - 31/12/2024

Abstract

In all languages of the world high vowels (such as /i/ in 'key') and /u/ in 'who') are pronounced with a higher pitch than low vowels (such as /a/ in 'far'). This phenomenon is known as 'intrinsic vowel pitch'. In the past, this phenomenon has been explained in two ways. On the one hand, intrinsic vowel pitch has to do with the operation of the speech organs: during the articulation of /i/ and /u/ the tongue is lifted far forward in the mouth. This tension pulls on the larynx and this stretches the vocal folds so that a higher pitch is obtained. In vowels like /a/ the vocal folds are not stretched to the same degree so that a lower tone is heard. On the other hand, this phenomenon supports the intentions of speakers who aim to make vowels sound as different as possible from each other in order to speak clearly. Scientists do not agree on which explanation is correct, but they do agree on the following: if the first explanation is correct then intrinsic vowel pitch is expected to occur in babble of deaf babies. Remarkably, this has never been systematically investigated in a large-scale study and this is precisely what this project aims to investigate.

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An acoustic analysis of lexical stress and rhythm in early speech interactions of Dutch children and their primary caretakers: A longitudinal study. 01/10/2015 - 30/09/2018

Abstract

The main objective of this study is to investigate the acquisition of "lexical" stress and rhythm in the period when children produce canonical babbling and their first identifiable words. A good understanding of these phenomena in children's speech is of prime importance because it has been shown that prosody plays a cardinal role in children's language acquisition.

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Francqui Chair 2015-2016 Prof. Peter Mariën. 01/10/2015 - 30/09/2016

Abstract

Proposed by the University, the Francqui Foundation each year awards two Francqui Chairs at the UAntwerp. These are intended to enable the invitation of a professor from another Belgian University or from abroad for a series of ten lessons. The Francqui Foundation pays the fee for these ten lessons directly to the holder of a Francqui Chair.

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An acoustic analysis of lexical stress and rhythm in early speech interactions of Dutch children and their primary caretakers: a longitudinal study. 01/10/2013 - 30/09/2015

Abstract

The main objective of this study is to investigate the acquisition of "lexical" stress and rhythm in the period when children produce canonical babbling and their first identifiable words. A good understanding of these phenomena in children's speech is of prime importance because it has been shown that prosody plays a cardinal role in children's language acquisition.

Researcher(s)

Research team(s)

Electropalatographic investigation of articulatory settings in geographically determined language varieties of Dutch. 01/10/2005 - 31/12/2007