Coordination of Oral and Laryngeal Movements in the Perceptually Fluent Speech of Adults Who Stutter

Max, Ludo; Gracco, Vincent L.
June 2005
Journal of Speech, Language & Hearing Research;Jun2005, Vol. 48 Issue 3, p524
Academic Journal
This work investigated whether stuttering and nonstuttering adults differ in the coordination of oral and laryngeal movements during the production of perceptually fluent speech. This question was addressed by completing correlation analyses that extended previous acoustic studies by others as well as inferential analyses based on the within-subject central tendency and variability of acoustic and physiological indices of oral-laryngeal control and coordination. Stuttering and nonstuttering adults produced the target /p/ as the medial consonant in C1V1#C2V2C3 sequences (C = consonant; V = vowel or diphthong; # = word boundary) embedded in utterances differing in length and location of the target movements. No between-groups differences were found for across- or within-subject correlations between acoustic measures of stop gap and voice onset time (VOT). However, the acoustic data did show longer durations for devoicing interval and VOT in the stuttering versus nonstuttering individuals, in the absence of a difference for a proportional measure specifically reflecting oral-laryngeal relative timing. Analyses of combined kinematic and electroglottographic data revealed that the stuttering individuals' speech was also characterized by (a) longer durations from bilabial closing movement onset and peak velocity to V1 vocal fold vibration offset and (b) greater within-subject variability for dependent variables that were physiological indices of devoicing interval and VOT, but again no between-groups differences were found for specific indices of oral-laryngeal relative timing. Overall, findings suggest that, for the production of voiceless bilabial stops in perceptually fluent speech, stuttering and nonstuttering adults differ in the duration of intervals defined by events within as well as across the oral and laryngeal subsystems, but the groups show similar patterns of relative timing for the involved oral and laryngeal movements.


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