Volume 128, Issue 3, September 2010
Index of content:
- SPEECH PERCEPTION 
Talker-listener accent interactions in speech-in-noise recognition: Effects of prosodic manipulation as a function of language experience128(2010); http://dx.doi.org/10.1121/1.3466857View Description Hide Description
Previous work has shown that accents affect speech recognition accuracy in noise, with intelligibility being modulated by the similarity between the talkers' and listeners' accents, particularly in the case where they have different L1s. The present study examined the contribution of prosody to recognizing native (L1) and non-native (L2) speech in noise, and how this is affected by the listener's L2 experience. A group of monolingual English listeners and two groups of French listeners with varying L2 English experience were presented with English sentences produced by L1 and L2 (French) speakers. The stimuli were digitally processed to exchange the pitch and segment durations between recordings of the same sentences produced by different speakers (e.g., imposing a French-accented prosody onto recordings made from English speakers). The results revealed that English listeners were more accurate at recognizing L1 English with English prosody, the French inexperienced listeners were more accurate at recognizing French-accented speech with French prosody, and the French experienced listeners varied in the cues that they used depending on the noise level, showing more flexibility of processing. The use of prosodic cues in noise thus appears to be modulated by language experience and varies according to listening context.