Poster D102, Monday, March 27, 8:00 – 10:00 am, Pacific Concourse
Categorical perception of Mandarin lexical tone at age 8 can predict children’s reading ability at age 10 in Chinese children: a longitudinal auditory ERP investigation.
Han Wu1, Pengfei Qu2, Linjun Zhang3, Hua Shu4, Bruce McCandliss5, Jingming Liu1; 1Tsinghua University, 2Chinese Academy of Governance, 3Beijing Language and Culture University, 4Beijing Normal University, 5Standford University
Background: Auditory processing of speech sounds is influenced by one’s native language experiences. Studying speech perception in childhood can improve the understanding of how people become culture-bounded and attend to the specific sounds in their native languages. This two-year longitudinal ERP study investigates changes in pre-attentive auditory processing that underlies Categorical perception of Mandarin lexical tones during the years children learn to read fluently. The main purpose of the present study was to explore the development of lexical tone categorical perception to see if it can predict children’s reading ability. Methods: Both behavioral and electrophysiological measures were taken in this study. Auditory event-related potentials were collected with a passive listening oddball paradigm. Using a stimulus continuum spanning from one lexical tone category exemplar to another, we identified a between-category and a within-category tone deviant that were acoustically equidistant from a standard stimulus. 8-year-old Mandarin speakers participated in both an initial ERP oddball paradigm and returned for a two-year follow up. Results: The between-category MMN and within-category MMN significantly correlate with each other at age 8 but not at age 10. The between-category MMN at age 8 can predict children’s ability at age 10 but the within-category MMN cannot. Conclusion: The behavioral and electrophysiological results demonstrate that categorical perception of lexical tone at age 8 can predict children’s reading ability at age 10.
Topic Area: PERCEPTION & ACTION: Audition