Normalization for speechrate in native and nonnative speech
Bosker, H. R., & Reinisch, E.
Normalization for speechrate in native and nonnative speech. In M. Wolters, J. Livingstone, B. Beattie, R. Smith, M. MacMahon, J. Stuart-Smith, & J. Scobbie (Eds.
), Proceedings of the 18th International Congresses of Phonetic Sciences (ICPhS 2015)
. London: International Phonetic Association.
Speech perception involves a number of processes that deal with variation in the speech signal. One such process is normalization for speechrate: local
temporal cues are perceived relative to the rate in the surrounding context. It is as yet unclear whether
and how this perceptual effect interacts with higher level impressions of rate, such as a speaker’s nonnative
identity. Nonnative speakers typically speak
more slowly than natives, an experience that listeners
take into account when explicitly judging the rate
of nonnative speech. The present study investigated
whether this is also reflected in implicit rate normalization.
Results indicate that nonnative speech is implicitly
perceived as faster than temporally-matched
native speech, suggesting that the additional cognitive
load of listening to an accent speeds up rate perception.
Therefore, rate perception in speech is not
dependent on syllable durations alone but also on the
ease of processing of the temporal signal.