Publications

Displaying 1 - 50 of 50
  • Alhama, R. G., Siegelman, N., Frost, R., & Armstrong, B. C. (2019). The role of information in visual word recognition: A perceptually-constrained connectionist account. In A. Goel, C. Seifert, & C. Freksa (Eds.), Proceedings of the 41st Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society (CogSci 2019) (pp. 83-89). Austin, TX: Cognitive Science Society.

    Abstract

    Proficient readers typically fixate near the center of a word, with a slight bias towards word onset. We explore a novel account of this phenomenon based on combining information-theory with visual perceptual constraints in a connectionist model of visual word recognition. This account posits that the amount of information-content available for word identification varies across fixation locations and across languages, thereby explaining the overall fixation location bias in different languages, making the novel prediction that certain words are more readily identified when fixating at an atypical fixation location, and predicting specific cross-linguistic differences. We tested these predictions across several simulations in English and Hebrew, and in a pilot behavioral experiment. Results confirmed that the bias to fixate closer to word onset aligns with maximizing information in the visual signal, that some words are more readily identified at atypical fixation locations, and that these effects vary to some degree across languages.
  • Bentum, M., Ten Bosch, L., Van den Bosch, A., & Ernestus, M. (2019). Listening with great expectations: An investigation of word form anticipations in naturalistic speech. In Proceedings of Interspeech 2019 (pp. 2265-2269). doi:10.21437/Interspeech.2019-2741.

    Abstract

    The event-related potential (ERP) component named phonological mismatch negativity (PMN) arises when listeners hear an unexpected word form in a spoken sentence [1]. The PMN is thought to reflect the mismatch between expected and perceived auditory speech input. In this paper, we use the PMN to test a central premise in the predictive coding framework [2], namely that the mismatch between prior expectations and sensory input is an important mechanism of perception. We test this with natural speech materials containing approximately 50,000 word tokens. The corresponding EEG-signal was recorded while participants (n = 48) listened to these materials. Following [3], we quantify the mismatch with two word probability distributions (WPD): a WPD based on preceding context, and a WPD that is additionally updated based on the incoming audio of the current word. We use the between-WPD cross entropy for each word in the utterances and show that a higher cross entropy correlates with a more negative PMN. Our results show that listeners anticipate auditory input while processing each word in naturalistic speech. Moreover, complementing previous research, we show that predictive language processing occurs across the whole probability spectrum.
  • Bentum, M., Ten Bosch, L., Van den Bosch, A., & Ernestus, M. (2019). Quantifying expectation modulation in human speech processing. In Proceedings of Interspeech 2019 (pp. 2270-2274). doi:10.21437/Interspeech.2019-2685.

    Abstract

    The mismatch between top-down predicted and bottom-up perceptual input is an important mechanism of perception according to the predictive coding framework (Friston, [1]). In this paper we develop and validate a new information-theoretic measure that quantifies the mismatch between expected and observed auditory input during speech processing. We argue that such a mismatch measure is useful for the study of speech processing. To compute the mismatch measure, we use naturalistic speech materials containing approximately 50,000 word tokens. For each word token we first estimate the prior word probability distribution with the aid of statistical language modelling, and next use automatic speech recognition to update this word probability distribution based on the unfolding speech signal. We validate the mismatch measure with multiple analyses, and show that the auditory-based update improves the probability of the correct word and lowers the uncertainty of the word probability distribution. Based on these results, we argue that it is possible to explicitly estimate the mismatch between predicted and perceived speech input with the cross entropy between word expectations computed before and after an auditory update.
  • Bowerman, M. (1983). Hidden meanings: The role of covert conceptual structures in children's development of language. In D. Rogers, & J. A. Sloboda (Eds.), The acquisition of symbolic skills (pp. 445-470). New York: Plenum Press.
  • Brehm, L., Jackson, C. N., & Miller, K. L. (2019). Incremental interpretation in the first and second language. In M. Brown, & B. Dailey (Eds.), BUCLD 43: Proceedings of the 43rd annual Boston University Conference on Language Development (pp. 109-122). Sommerville, MA: Cascadilla Press.
  • Bruggeman, L., & Cutler, A. (2019). The dynamics of lexical activation and competition in bilinguals’ first versus second language. In S. Calhoun, P. Escudero, M. Tabain, & P. Warren (Eds.), Proceedings of the 19th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences (ICPhS 20195) (pp. 1342-1346). Canberra, Australia: Australasian Speech Science and Technology Association Inc.

    Abstract

    Speech input causes listeners to activate multiple
    candidate words which then compete with one
    another. These include onset competitors, that share a
    beginning (bumper, butter), but also, counterintuitively,
    rhyme competitors, sharing an ending
    (bumper, jumper). In L1, competition is typically
    stronger for onset than for rhyme. In L2, onset
    competition has been attested but rhyme competition
    has heretofore remained largely unexamined. We
    assessed L1 (Dutch) and L2 (English) word
    recognition by the same late-bilingual individuals. In
    each language, eye gaze was recorded as listeners
    heard sentences and viewed sets of drawings: three
    unrelated, one depicting an onset or rhyme competitor
    of a word in the input. Activation patterns revealed
    substantial onset competition but no significant
    rhyme competition in either L1 or L2. Rhyme
    competition may thus be a “luxury” feature of
    maximally efficient listening, to be abandoned when
    resources are scarcer, as in listening by late
    bilinguals, in either language.
  • Cutler, A., & Butterfield, S. (1989). Natural speech cues to word segmentation under difficult listening conditions. In J. Tubach, & J. Mariani (Eds.), Proceedings of Eurospeech 89: European Conference on Speech Communication and Technology: Vol. 2 (pp. 372-375). Edinburgh: CEP Consultants.

    Abstract

    One of a listener's major tasks in understanding continuous speech is segmenting the speech signal into separate words. When listening conditions are difficult, speakers can help listeners by deliberately speaking more clearly. In three experiments, we examined how word boundaries are produced in deliberately clear speech. We found that speakers do indeed attempt to mark word boundaries; moreover, they differentiate between word boundaries in a way which suggests they are sensitive to listener needs. Application of heuristic segmentation strategies makes word boundaries before strong syllables easiest for listeners to perceive; but under difficult listening conditions speakers pay more attention to marking word boundaries before weak syllables, i.e. they mark those boundaries which are otherwise particularly hard to perceive.
  • Cutler, A. (1983). Semantics, syntax and sentence accent. In M. Van den Broecke, & A. Cohen (Eds.), Proceedings of the Tenth International Congress of Phonetic Sciences (pp. 85-91). Dordrecht: Foris.
  • Cutler, A., Burchfield, A., & Antoniou, M. (2019). A criterial interlocutor tally for successful talker adaptation? In S. Calhoun, P. Escudero, M. Tabain, & P. Warren (Eds.), Proceedings of the 19th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences (ICPhS 20195) (pp. 1485-1489). Canberra, Australia: Australasian Speech Science and Technology Association Inc.

    Abstract

    Part of the remarkable efficiency of listening is
    accommodation to unfamiliar talkers’ specific
    pronunciations by retuning of phonemic intercategory
    boundaries. Such retuning occurs in second
    (L2) as well as first language (L1); however, recent
    research with emigrés revealed successful adaptation
    in the environmental L2 but, unprecedentedly, not in
    L1 despite continuing L1 use. A possible explanation
    involving relative exposure to novel talkers is here
    tested in heritage language users with Mandarin as
    family L1 and English as environmental language. In
    English, exposure to an ambiguous sound in
    disambiguating word contexts prompted the expected
    adjustment of phonemic boundaries in subsequent
    categorisation. However, no adjustment occurred in
    Mandarin, again despite regular use. Participants
    reported highly asymmetric interlocutor counts in the
    two languages. We conclude that successful retuning
    ability requires regular exposure to novel talkers in
    the language in question, a criterion not met for the
    emigrés’ or for these heritage users’ L1.
  • Dideriksen, C., Fusaroli, R., Tylén, K., Dingemanse, M., & Christiansen, M. H. (2019). Contextualizing Conversational Strategies: Backchannel, Repair and Linguistic Alignment in Spontaneous and Task-Oriented Conversations. In A. K. Goel, C. M. Seifert, & C. Freksa (Eds.), Proceedings of the 41st Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society (CogSci 2019) (pp. 261-267). Montreal, QB: Cognitive Science Society.

    Abstract

    Do interlocutors adjust their conversational strategies to the specific contextual demands of a given situation? Prior studies have yielded conflicting results, making it unclear how strategies vary with demands. We combine insights from qualitative and quantitative approaches in a within-participant experimental design involving two different contexts: spontaneously occurring conversations (SOC) and task-oriented conversations (TOC). We systematically assess backchanneling, other-repair and linguistic alignment. We find that SOC exhibit a higher number of backchannels, a reduced and more generic repair format and higher rates of lexical and syntactic alignment. TOC are characterized by a high number of specific repairs and a lower rate of lexical and syntactic alignment. However, when alignment occurs, more linguistic forms are aligned. The findings show that conversational strategies adapt to specific contextual demands.
  • Felker, E. R., Ernestus, M., & Broersma, M. (2019). Evaluating dictation task measures for the study of speech perception. In S. Calhoun, P. Escudero, M. Tabain, & P. Warren (Eds.), Proceedings of the 19th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences (ICPhS 2019) (pp. 383-387). Canberra, Australia: Australasian Speech Science and Technology Association Inc.

    Abstract

    This paper shows that the dictation task, a well-
    known testing instrument in language education, has
    untapped potential as a research tool for studying
    speech perception. We describe how transcriptions
    can be scored on measures of lexical, orthographic,
    phonological, and semantic similarity to target
    phrases to provide comprehensive information about
    accuracy at different processing levels. The former
    three measures are automatically extractable,
    increasing objectivity, and the middle two are
    gradient, providing finer-grained information than
    traditionally used. We evaluate the measures in an
    English dictation task featuring phonetically reduced
    continuous speech. Whereas the lexical and
    orthographic measures emphasize listeners’ word
    identification difficulties, the phonological measure
    demonstrates that listeners can often still recover
    phonological features, and the semantic measure
    captures their ability to get the gist of the utterances.
    Correlational analyses and a discussion of practical
    and theoretical considerations show that combining
    multiple measures improves the dictation task’s
    utility as a research tool.
  • Felker, E. R., Ernestus, M., & Broersma, M. (2019). Lexically guided perceptual learning of a vowel shift in an interactive L2 listening context. In Proceedings of Interspeech 2019 (pp. 3123-3127). doi:10.21437/Interspeech.2019-1414.

    Abstract

    Lexically guided perceptual learning has traditionally been studied with ambiguous consonant sounds to which native listeners are exposed in a purely receptive listening context. To extend previous research, we investigate whether lexically guided learning applies to a vowel shift encountered by non-native listeners in an interactive dialogue. Dutch participants played a two-player game in English in either a control condition, which contained no evidence for a vowel shift, or a lexically constraining condition, in which onscreen lexical information required them to re-interpret their interlocutor’s /ɪ/ pronunciations as representing /ε/. A phonetic categorization pre-test and post-test were used to assess whether the game shifted listeners’ phonemic boundaries such that more of the /ε/-/ɪ/ continuum came to be perceived as /ε/. Both listener groups showed an overall post-test shift toward /ɪ/, suggesting that vowel perception may be sensitive to directional biases related to properties of the speaker’s vowel space. Importantly, listeners in the lexically constraining condition made relatively more post-test /ε/ responses than the control group, thereby exhibiting an effect of lexically guided adaptation. The results thus demonstrate that non-native listeners can adjust their phonemic boundaries on the basis of lexical information to accommodate a vowel shift learned in interactive conversation.
  • Fisher, S. E., & Tilot, A. K. (Eds.). (2019). Bridging senses: Novel insights from synaesthesia [Special Issue]. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London, Series B: Biological Sciences, 374.
  • Frost, R. L. A., Isbilen, E. S., Christiansen, M. H., & Monaghan, P. (2019). Testing the limits of non-adjacent dependency learning: Statistical segmentation and generalisation across domains. In A. K. Goel, C. M. Seifert, & C. Freksa (Eds.), Proceedings of the 41st Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society (CogSci 2019) (pp. 1787-1793). Montreal, QB: Cognitive Science Society.

    Abstract

    Achieving linguistic proficiency requires identifying words from speech, and discovering the constraints that govern the way those words are used. In a recent study of non-adjacent dependency learning, Frost and Monaghan (2016) demonstrated that learners may perform these tasks together, using similar statistical processes - contrary to prior suggestions. However, in their study, non-adjacent dependencies were marked by phonological cues (plosive-continuant-plosive structure), which may have influenced learning. Here, we test the necessity of these cues by comparing learning across three conditions; fixed phonology, which contains these cues, varied phonology, which omits them, and shapes, which uses visual shape sequences to assess the generality of statistical processing for these tasks. Participants segmented the sequences and generalized the structure in both auditory conditions, but learning was best when phonological cues were present. Learning was around chance on both tasks for the visual shapes group, indicating statistical processing may critically differ across domains.
  • Galke, L., Vagliano, I., & Scherp, A. (2019). Can graph neural networks go „online“? An analysis of pretraining and inference. In Proceedings of the Representation Learning on Graphs and Manifolds: ICLR2019 Workshop.

    Abstract

    Large-scale graph data in real-world applications is often not static but dynamic,
    i. e., new nodes and edges appear over time. Current graph convolution approaches
    are promising, especially, when all the graph’s nodes and edges are available dur-
    ing training. When unseen nodes and edges are inserted after training, it is not
    yet evaluated whether up-training or re-training from scratch is preferable. We
    construct an experimental setup, in which we insert previously unseen nodes and
    edges after training and conduct a limited amount of inference epochs. In this
    setup, we compare adapting pretrained graph neural networks against retraining
    from scratch. Our results show that pretrained models yield high accuracy scores
    on the unseen nodes and that pretraining is preferable over retraining from scratch.
    Our experiments represent a first step to evaluate and develop truly online variants
    of graph neural networks.
  • Galke, L., Melnychuk, T., Seidlmayer, E., Trog, S., Foerstner, K., Schultz, C., & Tochtermann, K. (2019). Inductive learning of concept representations from library-scale bibliographic corpora. In K. David, K. Geihs, M. Lange, & G. Stumme (Eds.), Informatik 2019: 50 Jahre Gesellschaft für Informatik - Informatik für Gesellschaft (pp. 219-232). Bonn: Gesellschaft für Informatik e.V. doi:10.18420/inf2019_26.
  • Goldrick, M., Brehm, L., Pyeong Whan, C., & Smolensky, P. (2019). Transient blend states and discrete agreement-driven errors in sentence production. In G. J. Snover, M. Nelson, B. O'Connor, & J. Pater (Eds.), Proceedings of the Society for Computation in Linguistics (SCiL 2019) (pp. 375-376). doi:10.7275/n0b2-5305.
  • Hahn, L. E., Ten Buuren, M., De Nijs, M., Snijders, T. M., & Fikkert, P. (2019). Acquiring novel words in a second language through mutual play with child songs - The Noplica Energy Center. In L. Nijs, H. Van Regenmortel, & C. Arculus (Eds.), MERYC19 Counterpoints of the senses: Bodily experiences in musical learning (pp. 78-87). Ghent, Belgium: EuNet MERYC 2019.

    Abstract

    Child songs are a great source for linguistic learning. Here we explore whether children can acquire novel words in a second language by playing a game featuring child songs in a playhouse. We present data from three studies that serve as scientific proof for the functionality of one game of the playhouse: the Energy Center. For this game, three hand-bikes were mounted on a panel. When children start moving the hand-bikes, child songs start playing simultaneously. Once the children produce enough energy with the hand-bikes, the songs are additionally accompanied with the sounds of musical instruments. In our studies, children executed a picture-selection task to evaluate whether they acquired new vocabulary from the songs presented during the game. Two of our studies were run in the field, one at a Dutch and one at an Indian pre-school. The third study features data from a more controlled laboratory setting. Our results partly confirm that the Energy Center is a successful means to support vocabulary acquisition in a second language. More research with larger sample sizes and longer access to the Energy Center is needed to evaluate the overall functionality of the game. Based on informal observations at our test sites, however, we are certain that children do pick up linguistic content from the songs during play, as many of the children repeat words and phrases from songs they heard. We will pick up upon these promising observations during future studies
  • Heilbron, M., Ehinger, B., Hagoort, P., & De Lange, F. P. (2019). Tracking naturalistic linguistic predictions with deep neural language models. In Proceedings of the 2019 Conference on Cognitive Computational Neuroscience (pp. 424-427). doi:10.32470/CCN.2019.1096-0.

    Abstract

    Prediction in language has traditionally been studied using
    simple designs in which neural responses to expected
    and unexpected words are compared in a categorical
    fashion. However, these designs have been contested
    as being ‘prediction encouraging’, potentially exaggerating
    the importance of prediction in language understanding.
    A few recent studies have begun to address
    these worries by using model-based approaches to probe
    the effects of linguistic predictability in naturalistic stimuli
    (e.g. continuous narrative). However, these studies
    so far only looked at very local forms of prediction, using
    models that take no more than the prior two words into
    account when computing a word’s predictability. Here,
    we extend this approach using a state-of-the-art neural
    language model that can take roughly 500 times longer
    linguistic contexts into account. Predictability estimates
    fromthe neural network offer amuch better fit to EEG data
    from subjects listening to naturalistic narrative than simpler
    models, and reveal strong surprise responses akin to
    the P200 and N400. These results show that predictability
    effects in language are not a side-effect of simple designs,
    and demonstrate the practical use of recent advances
    in AI for the cognitive neuroscience of language.
  • Joo, H., Jang, J., Kim, S., Cho, T., & Cutler, A. (2019). Prosodic structural effects on coarticulatory vowel nasalization in Australian English in comparison to American English. In S. Calhoun, P. Escudero, M. Tabain, & P. Warren (Eds.), Proceedings of the 19th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences (ICPhS 20195) (pp. 835-839). Canberra, Australia: Australasian Speech Science and Technology Association Inc.

    Abstract

    This study investigates effects of prosodic factors (prominence, boundary) on coarticulatory Vnasalization in Australian English (AusE) in CVN and NVC in comparison to those in American English
    (AmE). As in AmE, prominence was found to
    lengthen N, but to reduce V-nasalization, enhancing N’s nasality and V’s orality, respectively (paradigmatic contrast enhancement). But the prominence effect in CVN was more robust than that in AmE. Again similar to findings in AmE, boundary
    induced a reduction of N-duration and V-nasalization phrase-initially (syntagmatic contrast enhancement), and increased the nasality of both C and V phrasefinally.
    But AusE showed some differences in terms
    of the magnitude of V nasalization and N duration. The results suggest that the linguistic contrast enhancements underlie prosodic-structure modulation of coarticulatory V-nasalization in
    comparable ways across dialects, while the fine phonetic detail indicates that the phonetics-prosody interplay is internalized in the individual dialect’s phonetic grammar.
  • Klein, W. (Ed.). (1983). Intonation [Special Issue]. Zeitschrift für Literaturwissenschaft und Linguistik, (49).
  • Klein, W. (Ed.). (1989). Kindersprache [Special Issue]. Zeitschrift für Literaturwissenschaft und Linguistik, (73).
  • Klein, W. (Ed.). (1976). Psycholinguistik [Special Issue]. Zeitschrift für Literaturwissenschaft und Linguistik, (23/24).
  • Klein, W. (Ed.). (1979). Sprache und Kontext [Special Issue]. Zeitschrift für Literaturwissenschaft und Linguistik, (33).
  • Levelt, W. J. M., & Plomp, R. (1962). Musical consonance and critical bandwidth. In Proceedings of the 4th International Congress Acoustics (pp. 55-55).
  • Levelt, W. J. M. (1983). The speaker's organization of discourse. In Proceedings of the XIIIth International Congress of Linguists (pp. 278-290).
  • Levinson, S. C. (1979). Pragmatics and social deixis: Reclaiming the notion of conventional implicature. In C. Chiarello (Ed.), Proceedings of the Fifth Annual Meeting of the Berkeley Linguistics Society (pp. 206-223).
  • Liu, S., & Zhang, Y. (2019). Why some verbs are harder to learn than others – A micro-level analysis of everyday learning contexts for early verb learning. In A. K. Goel, C. M. Seifert, & C. Freksa (Eds.), Proceedings of the 41st Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society (CogSci 2019) (pp. 2173-2178). Montreal, QB: Cognitive Science Society.

    Abstract

    Verb learning is important for young children. While most
    previous research has focused on linguistic and conceptual
    challenges in early verb learning (e.g. Gentner, 1982, 2006),
    the present paper examined early verb learning at the
    attentional level and quantified the input for early verb learning
    by measuring verb-action co-occurrence statistics in parent-
    child interaction from the learner’s perspective. To do so, we
    used head-mounted eye tracking to record fine-grained
    multimodal behaviors during parent-infant joint play, and
    analyzed parent speech, parent and infant action, and infant
    attention at the moments when parents produced verb labels.
    Our results show great variability across different action verbs,
    in terms of frequency of verb utterances, frequency of
    corresponding actions related to verb meanings, and infants’
    attention to verbs and actions, which provide new insights on
    why some verbs are harder to learn than others.
  • Mai, F., Galke, L., & Scherp, A. (2019). CBOW is not all you need: Combining CBOW with the compositional matrix space model. In Proceedings of the Seventh International Conference on Learning Representations (ICLR 2019). OpenReview.net.

    Abstract

    Continuous Bag of Words (CBOW) is a powerful text embedding method. Due to its strong capabilities to encode word content, CBOW embeddings perform well on a wide range of downstream tasks while being efficient to compute. However, CBOW is not capable of capturing the word order. The reason is that the computation of CBOW's word embeddings is commutative, i.e., embeddings of XYZ and ZYX are the same. In order to address this shortcoming, we propose a
    learning algorithm for the Continuous Matrix Space Model, which we call Continual Multiplication of Words (CMOW). Our algorithm is an adaptation of word2vec, so that it can be trained on large quantities of unlabeled text. We empirically show that CMOW better captures linguistic properties, but it is inferior to CBOW in memorizing word content. Motivated by these findings, we propose a hybrid model that combines the strengths of CBOW and CMOW. Our results show that the hybrid CBOW-CMOW-model retains CBOW's strong ability to memorize word content while at the same time substantially improving its ability to encode other linguistic information by 8%. As a result, the hybrid also performs better on 8 out of 11 supervised downstream tasks with an average improvement of 1.2%.
  • Mamus, E., Rissman, L., Majid, A., & Ozyurek, A. (2019). Effects of blindfolding on verbal and gestural expression of path in auditory motion events. In A. K. Goel, C. M. Seifert, & C. C. Freksa (Eds.), Proceedings of the 41st Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society (CogSci 2019) (pp. 2275-2281). Montreal, QB: Cognitive Science Society.

    Abstract

    Studies have claimed that blind people’s spatial representations are different from sighted people, and blind people display superior auditory processing. Due to the nature of auditory and haptic information, it has been proposed that blind people have spatial representations that are more sequential than sighted people. Even the temporary loss of sight—such as through blindfolding—can affect spatial representations, but not much research has been done on this topic. We compared blindfolded and sighted people’s linguistic spatial expressions and non-linguistic localization accuracy to test how blindfolding affects the representation of path in auditory motion events. We found that blindfolded people were as good as sighted people when localizing simple sounds, but they outperformed sighted people when localizing auditory motion events. Blindfolded people’s path related speech also included more sequential, and less holistic elements. Our results indicate that even temporary loss of sight influences spatial representations of auditory motion events
  • Marcoux, K., & Ernestus, M. (2019). Differences between native and non-native Lombard speech in terms of pitch range. In M. Ochmann, M. Vorländer, & J. Fels (Eds.), Proceedings of the ICA 2019 and EAA Euroregio. 23rd International Congress on Acoustics, integrating 4th EAA Euroregio 2019 (pp. 5713-5720). Berlin: Deutsche Gesellschaft für Akustik.

    Abstract

    Lombard speech, speech produced in noise, is acoustically different from speech produced in quiet (plain speech) in several ways, including having a higher and wider F0 range (pitch). Extensive research on native Lombard speech does not consider that non-natives experience a higher cognitive load while producing
    speech and that the native language may influence the non-native speech. We investigated pitch range in plain and Lombard speech in native and non-natives.
    Dutch and American-English speakers read contrastive question-answer pairs in quiet and in noise in English, while the Dutch also read Dutch sentence pairs. We found that Lombard speech is characterized by a wider pitch range than plain speech, for all speakers (native English, non-native English, and native Dutch).
    This shows that non-natives also widen their pitch range in Lombard speech. In sentences with early-focus, we see the same increase in pitch range when going from plain to Lombard speech in native and non-native English, but a smaller increase in native Dutch. In sentences with late-focus, we see the biggest increase for the native English, followed by non-native English and then native Dutch. Together these results indicate an effect of the native language on non-native Lombard speech.
  • Marcoux, K., & Ernestus, M. (2019). Pitch in native and non-native Lombard speech. In S. Calhoun, P. Escudero, M. Tabain, & P. Warren (Eds.), Proceedings of the 19th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences (ICPhS 2019) (pp. 2605-2609). Canberra, Australia: Australasian Speech Science and Technology Association Inc.

    Abstract

    Lombard speech, speech produced in noise, is
    typically produced with a higher fundamental
    frequency (F0, pitch) compared to speech in quiet. This paper examined the potential differences in native and non-native Lombard speech by analyzing median pitch in sentences with early- or late-focus produced in quiet and noise. We found an increase in pitch in late-focus sentences in noise for Dutch speakers in both English and Dutch, and for American-English speakers in English. These results
    show that non-native speakers produce Lombard speech, despite their higher cognitive load. For the early-focus sentences, we found a difference between the Dutch and the American-English speakers. Whereas the Dutch showed an increased F0 in noise
    in English and Dutch, the American-English speakers did not in English. Together, these results suggest that some acoustic characteristics of Lombard speech, such as pitch, may be language-specific, potentially
    resulting in the native language influencing the non-native Lombard speech.
  • Merkx, D., Frank, S., & Ernestus, M. (2019). Language learning using speech to image retrieval. In Proceedings of Interspeech 2019 (pp. 1841-1845). doi:10.21437/Interspeech.2019-3067.

    Abstract

    Humans learn language by interaction with their environment and listening to other humans. It should also be possible for computational models to learn language directly from speech but so far most approaches require text. We improve on existing neural network approaches to create visually grounded embeddings for spoken utterances. Using a combination of a multi-layer GRU, importance sampling, cyclic learning rates, ensembling and vectorial self-attention our results show a remarkable increase in image-caption retrieval performance over previous work. Furthermore, we investigate which layers in the model learn to recognise words in the input. We find that deeper network layers are better at encoding word presence, although the final layer has slightly lower performance. This shows that our visually grounded sentence encoder learns to recognise words from the input even though it is not explicitly trained for word recognition.
  • Moisik, S. R., Zhi Yun, D. P., & Dediu, D. (2019). Active adjustment of the cervical spine during pitch production compensates for shape: The ArtiVarK study. In S. Calhoun, P. Escudero, M. Tabain, & P. Warren (Eds.), Proceedings of the 19th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences (ICPhS 20195) (pp. 864-868). Canberra, Australia: Australasian Speech Science and Technology Association Inc.

    Abstract

    The anterior lordosis of the cervical spine is thought
    to contribute to pitch (fo) production by influencing
    cricoid rotation as a function of larynx height. This
    study examines the matter of inter-individual
    variation in cervical spine shape and whether this has
    an influence on how fo is produced along increasing
    or decreasing scales, using the ArtiVarK dataset,
    which contains real-time MRI pitch production data.
    We find that the cervical spine actively participates in
    fo production, but the amount of displacement
    depends on individual shape. In general, anterior
    spine motion (tending toward cervical lordosis)
    occurs for low fo, while posterior movement (tending
    towards cervical kyphosis) occurs for high fo.
  • Nijveld, A., Ten Bosch, L., & Ernestus, M. (2019). ERP signal analysis with temporal resolution using a time window bank. In Proceedings of Interspeech 2019 (pp. 1208-1212). doi:10.21437/Interspeech.2019-2729.

    Abstract

    In order to study the cognitive processes underlying speech comprehension, neuro-physiological measures (e.g., EEG and MEG), or behavioural measures (e.g., reaction times and response accuracy) can be applied. Compared to behavioural measures, EEG signals can provide a more fine-grained and complementary view of the processes that take place during the unfolding of an auditory stimulus.

    EEG signals are often analysed after having chosen specific time windows, which are usually based on the temporal structure of ERP components expected to be sensitive to the experimental manipulation. However, as the timing of ERP components may vary between experiments, trials, and participants, such a-priori defined analysis time windows may significantly hamper the exploratory power of the analysis of components of interest. In this paper, we explore a wide-window analysis method applied to EEG signals collected in an auditory repetition priming experiment.

    This approach is based on a bank of temporal filters arranged along the time axis in combination with linear mixed effects modelling. Crucially, it permits a temporal decomposition of effects in a single comprehensive statistical model which captures the entire EEG trace.
  • Parhammer*, S. I., Ebersberg*, M., Tippmann*, J., Stärk*, K., Opitz, A., Hinger, B., & Rossi, S. (2019). The influence of distraction on speech processing: How selective is selective attention? In Proceedings of Interspeech 2019 (pp. 3093-3097). doi:10.21437/Interspeech.2019-2699.

    Abstract

    -* indicates shared first authorship -
    The present study investigated the effects of selective attention on the processing of morphosyntactic errors in unattended parts of speech. Two groups of German native (L1) speakers participated in the present study. Participants listened to sentences in which irregular verbs were manipulated in three different conditions (correct, incorrect but attested ablaut pattern, incorrect and crosslinguistically unattested ablaut pattern). In order to track fast dynamic neural reactions to the stimuli, electroencephalography was used. After each sentence, participants in Experiment 1 performed a semantic judgement task, which deliberately distracted the participants from the syntactic manipulations and directed their attention to the semantic content of the sentence. In Experiment 2, participants carried out a syntactic judgement task, which put their attention on the critical stimuli. The use of two different attentional tasks allowed for investigating the impact of selective attention on speech processing and whether morphosyntactic processing steps are performed automatically. In Experiment 2, the incorrect attested condition elicited a larger N400 component compared to the correct condition, whereas in Experiment 1 no differences between conditions were found. These results suggest that the processing of morphosyntactic violations in irregular verbs is not entirely automatic but seems to be strongly affected by selective attention.
  • Pouw, W., Paxton, A., Harrison, S. J., & Dixon, J. A. (2019). Acoustic specification of upper limb movement in voicing. In A. Grimminger (Ed.), Proceedings of the 6th Gesture and Speech in Interaction – GESPIN 6 (pp. 68-74). Paderborn: Universitaetsbibliothek Paderborn. doi:10.17619/UNIPB/1-812.
  • Pouw, W., & Dixon, J. A. (2019). Quantifying gesture-speech synchrony. In A. Grimminger (Ed.), Proceedings of the 6th Gesture and Speech in Interaction – GESPIN 6 (pp. 75-80). Paderborn: Universitaetsbibliothek Paderborn. doi:10.17619/UNIPB/1-812.

    Abstract

    Spontaneously occurring speech is often seamlessly accompanied by hand gestures. Detailed
    observations of video data suggest that speech and gesture are tightly synchronized in time,
    consistent with a dynamic interplay between body and mind. However, spontaneous gesturespeech
    synchrony has rarely been objectively quantified beyond analyses of video data, which
    do not allow for identification of kinematic properties of gestures. Consequently, the point in
    gesture which is held to couple with speech, the so-called moment of “maximum effort”, has
    been variably equated with the peak velocity, peak acceleration, peak deceleration, or the onset
    of the gesture. In the current exploratory report, we provide novel evidence from motiontracking
    and acoustic data that peak velocity is closely aligned, and shortly leads, the peak pitch
    (F0) of speech

    Additional information

    https://osf.io/9843h/
  • Rissman, L., & Majid, A. (2019). Agency drives category structure in instrumental events. In A. K. Goel, C. M. Seifert, & C. Freksa (Eds.), Proceedings of the 41st Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society (CogSci 2019) (pp. 2661-2667). Montreal, QB: Cognitive Science Society.

    Abstract

    Thematic roles such as Agent and Instrument have a long-standing place in theories of event representation. Nonetheless, the structure of these categories has been difficult to determine. We investigated how instrumental events, such as someone slicing bread with a knife, are categorized in English. Speakers described a variety of typical and atypical instrumental events, and we determined the similarity structure of their descriptions using correspondence analysis. We found that events where the instrument is an extension of an intentional agent were most likely to elicit similar language, highlighting the importance of agency in structuring instrumental categories.
  • Schoenmakers, G.-J., & De Swart, P. (2019). Adverbial hurdles in Dutch scrambling. In A. Gattnar, R. Hörnig, M. Störzer, & S. Featherston (Eds.), Proceedings of Linguistic Evidence 2018: Experimental Data Drives Linguistic Theory (pp. 124-145). Tübingen: University of Tübingen.

    Abstract

    This paper addresses the role of the adverb in Dutch direct object scrambling constructions. We report four experiments in which we investigate whether the structural position and the scope sensitivity of the adverb affect acceptability judgments of scrambling constructions and native speakers' tendency to scramble definite objects. We conclude that the type of adverb plays a key role in Dutch word ordering preferences.
  • Schuerman, W. L., McQueen, J. M., & Meyer, A. S. (2019). Speaker statistical averageness modulates word recognition in adverse listening conditions. In S. Calhoun, P. Escudero, M. Tabain, & P. Warren (Eds.), Proceedings of the 19th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences (ICPhS 20195) (pp. 1203-1207). Canberra, Australia: Australasian Speech Science and Technology Association Inc.

    Abstract

    We tested whether statistical averageness (SA) at the level of the individual speaker could predict a speaker’s intelligibility. 28 female and 21 male speakers of Dutch were recorded producing 336 sentences,
    each containing two target nouns. Recordings were compared to those of all other same-sex speakers using dynamic time warping (DTW). For each sentence, the DTW distance constituted a metric
    of phonetic distance from one speaker to all other speakers. SA comprised the average of these distances. Later, the same participants performed a word recognition task on the target nouns in the same sentences, under three degraded listening conditions. In all three conditions, accuracy increased with SA. This held even when participants listened to their own utterances. These findings suggest that listeners process speech with respect to the statistical
    properties of the language spoken in their community, rather than using their own speech as a reference
  • Seidlmayer, E., Galke, L., Melnychuk, T., Schultz, C., Tochtermann, K., & Förstner, K. U. (2019). Take it personally - A Python library for data enrichment for infometrical applications. In M. Alam, R. Usbeck, T. Pellegrini, H. Sack, & Y. Sure-Vetter (Eds.), Proceedings of the Posters and Demo Track of the 15th International Conference on Semantic Systems co-located with 15th International Conference on Semantic Systems (SEMANTiCS 2019).

    Abstract

    Like every other social sphere, science is influenced by individual characteristics of researchers. However, for investigations on scientific networks, only little data about the social background of researchers, e.g. social origin, gender, affiliation etc., is available.
    This paper introduces ”Take it personally - TIP”, a conceptual model and library currently under development, which aims to support the
    semantic enrichment of publication databases with semantically related background information which resides elsewhere in the (semantic) web, such as Wikidata.
    The supplementary information enriches the original information in the publication databases and thus facilitates the creation of complex scientific knowledge graphs. Such enrichment helps to improve the scientometric analysis of scientific publications as they can also take social backgrounds of researchers into account and to understand social structure in research communities.
  • Seijdel, N., Sakmakidis, N., De Haan, E. H. F., Bohte, S. M., & Scholte, H. S. (2019). Implicit scene segmentation in deeper convolutional neural networks. In Proceedings of the 2019 Conference on Cognitive Computational Neuroscience (pp. 1059-1062). doi:10.32470/CCN.2019.1149-0.

    Abstract

    Feedforward deep convolutional neural networks (DCNNs) are matching and even surpassing human performance on object recognition. This performance suggests that activation of a loose collection of image
    features could support the recognition of natural object categories, without dedicated systems to solve specific visual subtasks. Recent findings in humans however, suggest that while feedforward activity may suffice for
    sparse scenes with isolated objects, additional visual operations ('routines') that aid the recognition process (e.g. segmentation or grouping) are needed for more complex scenes. Linking human visual processing to
    performance of DCNNs with increasing depth, we here explored if, how, and when object information is differentiated from the backgrounds they appear on. To this end, we controlled the information in both objects
    and backgrounds, as well as the relationship between them by adding noise, manipulating background congruence and systematically occluding parts of the image. Results indicated less distinction between object- and background features for more shallow networks. For those networks, we observed a benefit of training on segmented objects (as compared to unsegmented objects). Overall, deeper networks trained on natural
    (unsegmented) scenes seem to perform implicit 'segmentation' of the objects from their background, possibly by improved selection of relevant features.
  • Shen, C., & Janse, E. (2019). Articulatory control in speech production. In S. Calhoun, P. Escudero, M. Tabain, & P. Warren (Eds.), Proceedings of the 19th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences (ICPhS 2019) (pp. 2533-2537). Canberra, Australia: Australasian Speech Science and Technology Association Inc.
  • Shen, C., Cooke, M., & Janse, E. (2019). Individual articulatory control in speech enrichment. In M. Ochmann, M. Vorländer, & J. Fels (Eds.), Proceedings of the 23rd International Congress on Acoustics (pp. 5726-5730). Berlin: Deutsche Gesellschaft für Akustik.

    Abstract

    ndividual talkers may use various strategies to enrich their speech while speaking in noise (i.e., Lombard speech) to improve their intelligibility. The resulting acoustic-phonetic changes in Lombard speech vary amongst different speakers, but it is unclear what causes these talker differences, and what impact these differences have on intelligibility. This study investigates the potential role of articulatory control in talkers’ Lombard speech enrichment success. Seventy-eight speakers read out sentences in both their habitual style and in a condition where they were instructed to speak clearly while hearing loud speech-shaped noise. A diadochokinetic (DDK) speech task that requires speakers to repetitively produce word or non-word sequences as accurately and as rapidly as possible, was used to quantify their articulatory control. Individuals’ predicted intelligibility in both speaking styles (presented at -5 dB SNR) was measured using an acoustic glimpse-based metric: the High-Energy Glimpse Proportion (HEGP). Speakers’ HEGP scores show a clear effect of speaking condition (better HEGP scores in the Lombard than habitual condition), but no simple effect of articulatory control on HEGP, nor an interaction between speaking condition and articulatory control. This indicates that individuals’ speech enrichment success as measured by the HEGP metric was not predicted by DDK performance.
  • Ten Bosch, L., Mulder, K., & Boves, L. (2019). Phase synchronization between EEG signals as a function of differences between stimuli characteristics. In Proceedings of Interspeech 2019 (pp. 1213-1217). doi:10.21437/Interspeech.2019-2443.

    Abstract

    The neural processing of speech leads to specific patterns in the brain which can be measured as, e.g., EEG signals. When properly aligned with the speech input and averaged over many tokens, the Event Related Potential (ERP) signal is able to differentiate specific contrasts between speech signals. Well-known effects relate to the difference between expected and unexpected words, in particular in the N400, while effects in N100 and P200 are related to attention and acoustic onset effects. Most EEG studies deal with the amplitude of EEG signals over time, sidestepping the effect of phase and phase synchronization. This paper investigates the relation between phase in the EEG signals measured in an auditory lexical decision task by Dutch participants listening to full and reduced English word forms. We show that phase synchronization takes place across stimulus conditions, and that the so-called circular variance is narrowly related to the type of contrast between stimuli.
  • Ter Bekke, M., Ozyurek, A., & Ünal, E. (2019). Speaking but not gesturing predicts motion event memory within and across languages. In A. Goel, C. Seifert, & C. Freksa (Eds.), Proceedings of the 41st Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society (CogSci 2019) (pp. 2940-2946). Montreal, QB: Cognitive Science Society.

    Abstract

    In everyday life, people see, describe and remember motion events. We tested whether the type of motion event information (path or manner) encoded in speech and gesture predicts which information is remembered and if this varies across speakers of typologically different languages. We focus on intransitive motion events (e.g., a woman running to a tree) that are described differently in speech and co-speech gesture across languages, based on how these languages typologically encode manner and path information (Kita & Özyürek, 2003; Talmy, 1985). Speakers of Dutch (n = 19) and Turkish (n = 22) watched and described motion events. With a surprise (i.e. unexpected) recognition memory task, memory for manner and path components of these events was measured. Neither Dutch nor Turkish speakers’ memory for manner went above chance levels. However, we found a positive relation between path speech and path change detection: participants who described the path during encoding were more accurate at detecting changes to the path of an event during the memory task. In addition, the relation between path speech and path memory changed with native language: for Dutch speakers encoding path in speech was related to improved path memory, but for Turkish speakers no such relation existed. For both languages, co-speech gesture did not predict memory speakers. We discuss the implications of these findings for our understanding of the relations between speech, gesture, type of encoding in language and memory.
  • Troncoso Ruiz, A., Ernestus, M., & Broersma, M. (2019). Learning to produce difficult L2 vowels: The effects of awareness-rasing, exposure and feedback. In S. Calhoun, P. Escudero, M. Tabain, & P. Warren (Eds.), Proceedings of the 19th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences (ICPhS 2019) (pp. 1094-1098). Canberra, Australia: Australasian Speech Science and Technology Association Inc.
  • Wagner, M. A., Broersma, M., McQueen, J. M., & Lemhöfer, K. (2019). Imitating speech in an unfamiliar language and an unfamiliar non-native accent in the native language. In S. Calhoun, P. Escudero, M. Tabain, & P. Warren (Eds.), Proceedings of the 19th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences (ICPhS 20195) (pp. 1362-1366). Canberra, Australia: Australasian Speech Science and Technology Association Inc.

    Abstract

    This study concerns individual differences in speech imitation ability and the role that lexical representations play in imitation. We examined 1) whether imitation of sounds in an unfamiliar language (L0) is related to imitation of sounds in an unfamiliar
    non-native accent in the speaker’s native language (L1) and 2) whether it is easier or harder to imitate speech when you know the words to be imitated. Fifty-nine native Dutch speakers imitated words with target vowels in Basque (/a/ and /e/) and Greekaccented
    Dutch (/i/ and /u/). Spectral and durational
    analyses of the target vowels revealed no relationship between the success of L0 and L1 imitation and no difference in performance between tasks (i.e., L1
    imitation was neither aided nor blocked by lexical knowledge about the correct pronunciation). The results suggest instead that the relationship of the vowels to native phonological categories plays a bigger role in imitation
  • Wolf, M. C., Smith, A. C., Meyer, A. S., & Rowland, C. F. (2019). Modality effects in vocabulary acquisition. In A. K. Goel, C. M. Seifert, & C. Freksa (Eds.), Proceedings of the 41st Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society (CogSci 2019) (pp. 1212-1218). Montreal, QB: Cognitive Science Society.

    Abstract

    It is unknown whether modality affects the efficiency with which humans learn novel word forms and their meanings, with previous studies reporting both written and auditory advantages. The current study implements controls whose absence in previous work likely offers explanation for such contradictory findings. In two novel word learning experiments, participants were trained and tested on pseudoword - novel object pairs, with controls on: modality of test, modality of meaning, duration of exposure and transparency of word form. In both experiments word forms were presented in either their written or spoken form, each paired with a pictorial meaning (novel object). Following a 20-minute filler task, participants were tested on their ability to identify the picture-word form pairs on which they were trained. A between subjects design generated four participant groups per experiment 1) written training, written test; 2) written training, spoken test; 3) spoken training, written test; 4) spoken training, spoken test. In Experiment 1 the written stimulus was presented for a time period equal to the duration of the spoken form. Results showed that when the duration of exposure was equal, participants displayed a written training benefit. Given words can be read faster than the time taken for the spoken form to unfold, in Experiment 2 the written form was presented for 300 ms, sufficient time to read the word yet 65% shorter than the duration of the spoken form. No modality effect was observed under these conditions, when exposure to the word form was equivalent. These results demonstrate, at least for proficient readers, that when exposure to the word form is controlled across modalities the efficiency with which word form-meaning associations are learnt does not differ. Our results therefore suggest that, although we typically begin as aural-only word learners, we ultimately converge on developing learning mechanisms that learn equally efficiently from both written and spoken materials.

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