Ronny Bujok


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  • Bujok, R., Meyer, A. S., & Bosker, H. R. (in press). Audiovisual perception of lexical stress: Beat gestures and articulatory cues. Language and Speech.


    Human communication is inherently multimodal. Auditory speech, but also visual cues can be used to understand another talker. Most studies of audiovisual speech perception have focused on the perception of speech segments (i.e., speech sounds). However, less is known about the influence of visual information on the perception of suprasegmental aspects of speech like lexical stress. In two experiments, we investigated the influence of different visual cues (e.g., facial articulatory cues and beat gestures) on the audiovisual perception of lexical stress. We presented auditory lexical stress continua of disyllabic Dutch stress pairs together with videos of a speaker producing stress on the first or second syllable (e.g., articulating VOORnaam or voorNAAM). Moreover, we combined and fully crossed the face of the speaker producing lexical stress on either syllable with a gesturing body producing a beat gesture on either the first or second syllable. Results showed that people successfully used visual articulatory cues to stress in muted videos. However, in audiovisual conditions, we were not able to find an effect of visual articulatory cues. In contrast, we found that the temporal alignment of beat gestures with speech robustly influenced participants' perception of lexical stress. These results highlight the importance of considering suprasegmental aspects of language in multimodal contexts.
  • Cos, F., Bujok, R., & Bosker, H. R. (in press). Test-retest reliability of audiovisual lexical stress perception after >1.5 years. In Proceedings of the 12th International Conference on Speech Prosody.


    In natural communication, we typically both see and hear our conversation partner. Speech comprehension thus requires the integration of auditory and visual information from the speech signal. This is for instance evidenced by the Manual McGurk effect, where the perception of lexical stress is biased towards the syllable that has a beat gesture aligned to it. However, there is considerable individual variation in how heavily gestural timing is weighed as a cue to stress. To assess within-individualconsistency, this study investigated the test-retest reliability of the Manual McGurk effect. We reran an earlier Manual McGurk experiment with the same participants, over 1.5 years later. At the group level, we successfully replicated the Manual McGurk effect with a similar effect size. However, a correlation of the by-participant effect sizes in the two identical experiments indicated that there was only a weak correlation between both tests, suggesting that the weighing of gestural information in the perception of lexical stress is stable at the group level, but less so in individuals. Findings are discussed in comparison to other measures of audiovisual integration in speech perception. Index Terms: Audiovisual integration, beat gestures, lexical stress, test-retest reliability
  • Rohrer, P. L., Bujok, R., Van Maastricht, L., & Bosker, H. R. (in press). The timing of beat gestures affects lexical stress perception in Spanish. In Proceedings of the 12th International Conference on Speech Prosody.
  • Bujok, R., Meyer, A. S., & Bosker, H. R. (2022). Visible lexical stress cues on the face do not influence audiovisual speech perception. In S. Frota, M. Cruz, & M. Vigário (Eds.), Proceedings of Speech Prosody 2022 (pp. 259-263). doi:10.21437/SpeechProsody.2022-53.


    Producing lexical stress leads to visible changes on the face, such as longer duration and greater size of the opening of the mouth. Research suggests that these visual cues alone can inform participants about which syllable carries stress (i.e., lip-reading silent videos). This study aims to determine the influence of visual articulatory cues on lexical stress perception in more naturalistic audiovisual settings. Participants were presented with seven disyllabic, Dutch minimal stress pairs (e.g., VOORnaam [first name] & voorNAAM [respectable]) in audio-only (phonetic lexical stress continua without video), video-only (lip-reading silent videos), and audiovisual trials (e.g., phonetic lexical stress continua with video of talker saying VOORnaam or voorNAAM). Categorization data from video-only trials revealed that participants could distinguish the minimal pairs above chance from seeing the silent videos alone. However, responses in the audiovisual condition did not differ from the audio-only condition. We thus conclude that visual lexical stress information on the face, while clearly perceivable, does not play a major role in audiovisual speech perception. This study demonstrates that clear unimodal effects do not always generalize to more naturalistic multimodal communication, advocating that speech prosody is best considered in multimodal settings.

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