Children's Recognition of Cartoon Voices

Spence, Melanie J.; Rollins, Pamela R.; Jerger, Susan
February 2002
Journal of Speech, Language & Hearing Research;Feb2002, Vol. 45 Issue 1, p214
Academic Journal
We examined developmental changes in talker recognition skills by assessing 3-, 4-, and 5-year-old children's recognition of 20 cartoon characters' voices. For each participant, the character set was subdivided into more and less familiar talkers based on the participant's ability to name each character. Four-and 5-year-old children recognized more of the voices (81% and 86%, respectively) than did 3-year-olds (61%), although performance of all age groups was well above chance. All groups of children were more accurate at recognizing more familiar than less familiar characters. These results suggest that indexical information about a talker becomes an integral part of the perceptual record in memory and can be used by children at a very young age. These results are important because children's ability to learn vocal sources may be an important aid to the development of spoken word recognition.


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