Infant-directed speech facilitates lexical learning in adults hearing Chinese: implications for language acquisition

Golinkoff, R.M. & Alioto, A. (1995). Infant-directed speech facilitates lexical learning in adults hearing Chinese: implications for language acquisition. J Child Lang, 22, 703-720.

Characteristics and functions of ID speech (compared to ADS)

  • slower speech rate
  • extended frequency rage
  • higher overal fundamental frequency
  • repeated pitch contours
  • marked intensity shiefts
  • longer pauses
  • simplified vocab
  • lengthened vowels

Advantages of CDS

  • intonational highlighting increases perceptual salience (Bock & Mazzella, 1983)
  • seems to communicate positive affect (smiles from young infants are more effectively elicited by high-pitched human voice than by visual or other auditory stimuli – Wolf, 1963)
  • increases eye-gaze in children (Santarcangelo & Dyer, 1988)
  • generates greater attentiveness (Werker & McLeod, 1989)
  • helps early word learning when highlighted word is at the end of a sentence due to both quality of input and recency effect (Fernald & Mazzie, 1991)

Exp 1: Can lexical learning (in foreign lang) for adults be facilitated by IDS?

  • Monolingual Eng speakers assigned to either ID group or AD group
  • Subjs looked at slides of common objects and hear an audio naming and talking about the objects in Chinese. Subjs asked to look at slide and focus on what is being siad.
  • Test: Given 10 numbered Chinese words with 3 choices of English words to choose from. Then heard a speaker name those words in ADS and had to choose the correct Eng equivalent.
  • Results: ID group (~65%) > AD group (~40% correct)

Exp 2: Does IDS help when placed in any part of the sentence or only in the final position?

  • Subjs divided into 2 groups: target word medial and target word final (position)
  • Same procedures as Exp 1
  • Results: There was an interaction between IDS and sentence position. That is, IDS only had an effect on lexical learning when the target word was in the utterance-final position.
  • IDS final > ADS final=IDS media



1 Response to “Infant-directed speech facilitates lexical learning in adults hearing Chinese: implications for language acquisition”

  1. 1 alex October 23, 2008 at 8:22 pm

    Follow up on the “Scenario-Based Spoken Interaction With Virtual Agents” Article.
    University of Edinburgh
    The Centre for Communication Interface Research (CCIR) is part of the School of Engineering and Electronics at the University of Edinburgh. CCIR’s research deals with people interacting with automated systems. There contact information is
    Spotlight Project
    A group of major European organisations is undertaking a three-year project to develop voice operated eCommerce services for the financial services and travel industries. Funded by the European Commission’s Information Society Technologies (IST) programme, project SPOTLIGHT, is addressing future mass market eCommerce services in English, Italian and German using natural spoken dialogues.
    – customers can find out details of a bank account or travel timetable – to new mass market eCommerce channel interfaces using speech recognition.

    This does not appear to be what we are trying to make, it is not a teaching tool.

    There publications:

    I am awaiting an email on whether the school of education has any classes or any other information on learning via video games.

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