Individual Differences in Speech Motor Control: What? How?

TitleIndividual Differences in Speech Motor Control: What? How?
Publication TypePresentation
Year of Publication2017
Conference NameDag van de Fonetiek 2017
AuthorsShen, Chen, and Esther Janse
PublisherNederlandse Vereniging voor Fonetische Wetenschappen
Conference LocationAmsterdam, The Netherlands

Speech production involves the complex integration between linguistic processes, executive functions (EFs), and speech motor control (SMC). Despite the potential roles EFs and SMC play in facilitating human speech production, SMC performance has largely been used to categorically separate pathological populations from non-pathological control groups. The potential variability of SMC in a healthy young adult population has not been studied as much. Additionally, there has been an ongoing debate on which tasks and speech materials best reflect speakers’ speech motor agility and stability.

To better capture the range and variability of SMC performance, we selected three speech-motoric tasks (diadochokinesis, tongue twister, and speaking latency). Likewise, three cognitive tasks (Flanker, Letter Number, and Operation Span tasks) were used to quantify participants’ EFs (of selective attention control, shifting ability, and updating of working memory).

Data collection with healthy young Dutch adults is currently ongoing. Analyses of two SMC tasks (diadochokinesis and tongue twister) and two EF tasks (Flanker and Letter Number) of 25 participants will be carried out and presented. Correlational results will also be discussed to describe the relationships among as well as between measures of SMC and EFs.