Speech Production

During the first year of life the infant's vocal abilities are also changing. Initially, because of anatomical limitations, newborns produce mostly cries or occasional gurgling. Infants begin producing sounds at approximately the age of 2 months, with the onset of cooing—vocalizations produced in the back of the mouth. By 4 months, most infants engage in vocal play, including a broad range of different kinds of sounds such as some rudimentary consonant-vowel (CV) syllables. By 6 months, infants produce canonical babbling, consisting of systematic CV syllables with adult-like timing. During this stage, infants are sensitive to the feedback they receive from their own babbling, and there are increases in the variety of consonants produced. By 10 months, infants babble in a conversational or modulated manner, with more complex strings of sounds that have varied intonation. These stages form the backdrop against which phonological development takes off during the second year of life.

One question that has been addressed in research on babbling is whether there is a connection between the sounds that an infant selects to produce and those in the target language in the infant's environment. A

second question concerns the relationship between babbling and the onset of language. There is growing evidence suggesting that there is important continuity between prelinguistic babbling and the first words produced by infants. Not only do these stages overlap but also there is considerable overlap in sounds incorporated in babbles and early words. Furthermore, research on the development of vocal babbling in deaf infants suggests that the auditory feedback that infants receive from their own as well as others' sounds is crucial in shaping the course of development. Thus, recent studies have shown that deaf infants begin babbling later than hearing infants and in a more limited way. Even the sounds are somewhat different, presumably because deaf infants lack auditory feedback from their own sounds and have no access to the speech sounds in their environment. At the same time, deaf infants exposed to sign language during the first year of life begin manual babbling: They produce repetitive sequences of sign-language formatives that parallel the syllabic units of vocal babbling.

Aspergers Answers Revealed

Aspergers Answers Revealed

Learn How to Help, Understand amp Cope with your Aspergers Child from a UK Chartered Educational Psychologist. Before beginning any practice relating to Aspergers it is highly recommended that you first obtain the consent and advice of a qualified health,education or social care professional.

Get My Free Ebook


Post a comment