Coarticulation as Synchronised Sequential Target Approximation: An EMA Study

Zirui Liu, Yi Xu, Feng-fan Hsieh


In this study we tested the hypothesis that consonant and vowel articulations start at the same time at syllable onset [1]. Articulatory data was collected for Mandarin Chinese using Electromagnetic Articulography (EMA), which tracks flesh-point movements in time and space. Unlike the traditional velocity threshold method [2], we used a triplet method based on the minimal pair paradigm [3] that detects divergence points between contrastive pairs of C or V respectively, before comparing their relative timing. Results show that articulatory onsets of consonant and vowel in CV syllables do not differ significantly from each other, which is consistent with the CV synchrony hypothesis. At the same time, the results also show some evidence that articulators that are shared by both C and V are engaged in sequential articulation, i.e., approaching the V target after approaching the C target.


 DOI: 10.21437/Interspeech.2020-1432

Cite as: Liu, Z., Xu, Y., Hsieh, F. (2020) Coarticulation as Synchronised Sequential Target Approximation: An EMA Study. Proc. Interspeech 2020, 1381-1385, DOI: 10.21437/Interspeech.2020-1432.


@inproceedings{Liu2020,
  author={Zirui Liu and Yi Xu and Feng-fan Hsieh},
  title={{Coarticulation as Synchronised Sequential Target Approximation: An EMA Study}},
  year=2020,
  booktitle={Proc. Interspeech 2020},
  pages={1381--1385},
  doi={10.21437/Interspeech.2020-1432},
  url={http://dx.doi.org/10.21437/Interspeech.2020-1432}
}