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Hearing and Donuts (Brain and Bagels) Seminar

April 8, 2022 @ 8:30 am - 9:30 am

Presenter: Sarah Beach, Postdoctoral Fellow, Carrie Niziolek (‘BLAB’) Lab, Waisman Center, University of Wisconsin
Topic: Effects of Cognitive Interference on Speech Acoustics

Speech is a rich physiological signal, the result of coordinated cognitive processes and neuromuscular action. While in everyday listening, the content of speech is paramount, the acoustic form of an utterance holds clues to the state of the speaker and the context in which it was produced.

In this study, we investigate how cognitive inhibition influences speaking. The Stroop effect is a classic demonstration of how reading (more automatic) interferes with color naming (less automatic). In our novel variant of the Stroop paradigm, we asked participants to inhibit reading while naming the color of (1) congruent words (e.g., red written in red); (2) color-incongruent words (e.g., green written in red); and (3) vowel-incongruent words (e.g., rid written in red). We hypothesized that this interference – and the cognitive processes undertaken to resolve it – would leave its mark on speech acoustics.

In this work-in-progress talk, I will discuss how subtle variations in the way that an individual pronounces a word can reveal traces of the processes that underlie its production, with wider implications for the use of speech as a biomarker in health, disease, and performance.

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Learn more about the Hearing and Donuts Seminar Series


April 8, 2022
8:30 am - 9:30 am
Event Category:


Online: Zoom