Electropalatographic Assessment of Tongue-to-Palate Contact Patterns and Variability in Children, Adolescents, and Adults

Hei Yan Cheng; Murdoch, Bruce E.; Goozée, Justine V.; Scott, Dion
April 2007
Journal of Speech, Language & Hearing Research;Apr2007, Vol. 50 Issue 2, p375
Academic Journal
Purpose: To investigate the developmental time course of tongue-to-palate contact patterns during speech from childhood to adulthood using electropalatography (EPG) and a comprehensive profile of data analysis. Method: Tongue-to-palate contacts were recorded during productions of /t/, /l/, /s/, and /k/ in 48 children, adolescents and adults (aged 6-38 years) using the Reading Electropalatograph system. Results: A protracted course of development for lingual control was indicated, with significant changes occurring until age 11 years; the adolescent period was in turn characterized by continual refinement of articulatory control. With maturity, a reduction in the amount of palatal contact and an anterior shift in the place of articulation was evident during anterior consonant productions, whereas the tongue-back-to-palate contact pattern became more consistent for the velar stop /k/. Conclusion: These results support that maturation of the speech motor system is nonuniform.


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