Anticipatory shortening: Articulation rate, phrase length, and lookahead in speech production

Jason Bishop, Boram Kim


The present study investigated “anticipatory shortening”, the durational compression of syllables in longer prosodic phrases. Our primary motivations were related to this phenomenon’s relevance to speech production planning; these durational adjustments depend on upcoming material, and as such, are generally assumed to be indicative of speakers’ lookahead. Applying basic correlational analysis to a corpus of (American English) read speech, we asked whether articulation rate (defined as average syllable durations) was most closely related to the length of an associated intermediate phrase, Intonational Phrase, or inter-pause interval. We found that, when final lengthening is removed, the two larger prosodic domains had by far the stronger relationship with articulation rate. We interpret our basic findings as consistent with claims that speakers plan their speech in relatively large chunks, corresponding to at least one Intonational Phrase.


 DOI: 10.21437/SpeechProsody.2018-48

Cite as: Bishop, J., Kim, B. (2018) Anticipatory shortening: Articulation rate, phrase length, and lookahead in speech production. Proc. 9th International Conference on Speech Prosody 2018, 235-239, DOI: 10.21437/SpeechProsody.2018-48.


@inproceedings{Bishop2018,
  author={Jason Bishop and Boram Kim},
  title={Anticipatory shortening: Articulation rate, phrase length, and lookahead in speech production},
  year=2018,
  booktitle={Proc. 9th International Conference on Speech Prosody 2018},
  pages={235--239},
  doi={10.21437/SpeechProsody.2018-48},
  url={http://dx.doi.org/10.21437/SpeechProsody.2018-48}
}