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Title: One way or another : evidence for perceptual asymmetry in pre-attentive learning of non-native contrasts
Authors: Liu, Liquan
Ong, Jia Hoong
Tuninetti, Alba
Escudero, Paola
Keywords: Electroencephalography
Mismatch Negativity
Issue Date: 2018
Source: Liu, L., Ong, J. H., Tuninetti, A., & Escudero, P. (2018). One way or another : evidence for perceptual asymmetry in pre-attentive learning of non-native contrasts. Frontiers in Psychology, 9, 162-.
Series/Report no.: Frontiers in Psychology
Abstract: Research investigating listeners’ neural sensitivity to speech sounds has largely focused on segmental features. We examined Australian English listeners’ perception and learning of a supra-segmental feature, pitch direction in a non-native tonal contrast, using a passive oddball paradigm and electroencephalography. The stimuli were two contours generated from naturally produced high-level and high-falling tones in Mandarin Chinese, differing only in pitch direction (Liu and Kager, 2014). While both contours had similar pitch onsets, the pitch offset of the falling contour was lower than that of the level one. The contrast was presented in two orientations (standard and deviant reversed) and tested in two blocks with the order of block presentation counterbalanced. Mismatch negativity (MMN) responses showed that listeners discriminated the non-native tonal contrast only in the second block, reflecting indications of learning through exposure during the first block. In addition, listeners showed a later MMN peak for their second block of test relative to listeners who did the same block first, suggesting linguistic (as opposed to acoustic) processing or a misapplication of perceptual strategies from the first to the second block. The results also showed a perceptual asymmetry for change in pitch direction: listeners who encountered a falling tone deviant in the first block had larger frontal MMN amplitudes than listeners who encountered a level tone deviant in the first block. The implications of our findings for second language speech and the developmental trajectory for tone perception are discussed.
DOI: 10.3389/fpsyg.2018.00162
Rights: © 2018 Liu, Ong, Tuninetti and Escudero. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.
Fulltext Permission: open
Fulltext Availability: With Fulltext
Appears in Collections:HSS Journal Articles

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