Perception of audiovisual infant directed speech
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Infant perception often deals with audiovisual speech input and a first step in processing this input is to perceive both visual and auditory information. The speech directed to infants has special characteristics and may enhance visual aspects of speech. The current study was designed to explore the impact of visual enhancement in infant-directed speech (IDS) on audiovisual mismatch detection in a naturalistic setting. Twenty infants participated in an experiment with a visual fixation task conducted in participants’ homes. Stimuli consisted of IDS and adult-directed speech (ADS) syllables with a plosive and the vowel /a:/, /i:/ or /u:/. These were either audiovisually congruent or incongruent. Infants looked longer at incongruent than congruent syllables and longer at IDS than ADS syllables, indicating that IDS and incongruent stimuli contain cues that can make audiovisual perception challenging and thereby attract infants’ gaze.