Compensatory and adaptive responses to real-time formant shifts in adults and children

Hayo Terband, Frits Van Brenk

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Auditory feedback plays an important role in speech motor learning. Previous studies investigating auditory feedback in speech development suggest that crucial steps are made in the development of auditory-motor integration around the age of 4. The present study investigated compensatory and adaptive responses to auditory perturbation in 4 to 9 year-old children compared to young adults (aged 19 – 29 years). Auditory feedback was perturbed by real-time shifting the first and second formant (F1 and F2) of the vowel /e:/ during the production of CVC words in a fivestep paradigm (familiarization; baseline; ramp; hold; release). Results showed that the children were able to compensate and adapt in a similar or larger degree compared to the young adults, even though the proportion of speakers displaying a consistent compensatory response was higher in the group of adults. In contrast to previous reports, results did not show differences in token-to-token variability between children and adults.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of ICPhS 2015
PublisherUniversity of Glasgow
ISBN (Print)978-0-85261-941-4
Publication statusPublished - 2015
Event18th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences - Glasgow, United Kingdom
Duration: 10 Aug 201514 Aug 2015


Conference18th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
Internet address


  • speech
  • development
  • sensori-motor control
  • auditory feedback perturbation


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