Access

You are not currently logged in.

Access your personal account or get JSTOR access through your library or other institution:

login

Log in to your personal account or through your institution.

If You Use a Screen Reader

This content is available through Read Online (Free) program, which relies on page scans. Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.

Developmental Differences in Infant Attention to the Spectral Properties of Infant-Directed Speech

Robin Panneton Cooper and Richard N. Aslin
Child Development
Vol. 65, No. 6 (Dec., 1994), pp. 1663-1677
Published by: Wiley on behalf of the Society for Research in Child Development
DOI: 10.2307/1131286
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1131286
Page Count: 15
  • Read Online (Free)
  • Download ($34.00)
  • Subscribe ($19.50)
  • Cite this Item
Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Developmental Differences in Infant Attention to the Spectral Properties of Infant-Directed Speech
Preview not available

Abstract

Across several independent studies, infants from a few days to 9 months of age have shown preferences for infant-directed (ID) over adult-directed (AD) speech. Moreover, 4-month-olds have been shown to prefer sine-wave analogs of the fundamental frequency of ID speech, suggesting that exaggerated pitch contours are prepotent stimuli for infants. The possibility of similar preferences by 1-month-olds was examined in a series of experiments, using a fixation-based preference procedure. Results from the first 2 experiments showed that 1-month-olds did not prefer the lower-frequency pitch characteristics of ID speech, even though 1-month-olds were able to discriminate low-pass filtered ID and AD speech. Since low-pass filtering may have distorted the fundamental frequency characteristics of ID speech, 1-month-olds were also tested with sine-wave analogs of the fundamental frequencies of the ID utterances. Infants in this third experiment also showed no preference for ID pitch contours. In the fourth experiment, 1-month-olds preferred a natural recording of ID speech over a version which preserved only its lower frequency prosodic features. From these results, it is argued that, although young infants are similar to older infants in their attraction to ID speech, their preferences depend on a wider range of acoustic features (e. g., spectral structure). It is suggested that exaggerated pitch contours which characterize ID speech may become salient communicative signals for infants through language-rich, interactive experiences with caretakers and increased perceptual acuity over the first months after birth.

Page Thumbnails

  • Thumbnail: Page 
[1663]
    [1663]
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1664
    1664
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1665
    1665
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1666
    1666
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1667
    1667
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1668
    1668
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1669
    1669
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1670
    1670
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1671
    1671
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1672
    1672
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1673
    1673
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1674
    1674
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1675
    1675
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1676
    1676
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1677
    1677