You are here: Home Events MPI Colloquium series - Folder MPI Colloquium Series - 2013 Martin Corley, May 21 2013

Martin Corley, May 21 2013

Disfluency in Speech: The Listener's Perspective

Martin Corley
University of Edinburgh

Disfluencies in spontaneous speech have the potential to affect listeners in at least two ways: They may impact upon the moment-to-moment process of determining the speaker's intended meaning, and they may influence the listener's lasting impression of what was said.  In this talk, I outline what we know about each of these types of effect, focusing on three sources of evidence.
Evidence from a series of eyetracking and ERP studies shows that listeners update their predictions of what is likely to be uttered following hesitation disfluencies; and that they pay more attention to words which are uttered immediately post-disfluency. Participants in the ERP studies are more likely to later recognise having heard words which occur immediately post-disfluency, suggesting a link between short-term processing differences (in prediction and attention) and their longer-term consequences (in memory). Evidence from change detection studies confirms that words encountered post-disfluency are better encoded, and allows us to examine the range of signals that might be considered as "disfluent". Evidence from feeling-of-knowing studies shows that listeners have reduced confidence in the veracity of statements that are disfluent, showing that disfluency affects the listener's metalinguistic as well as linguistic representations. Taken together, these findings emphasise the interplay of prediction and attention in the comprehension of "natural", imperfectly-produced, natural language.

Where and when:
15:45-17:00 May 21, 2013
MPI room 163

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