4th International Conference on Spoken Language Processing

Philadelphia, PA, USA
October 3-6, 1996

Investigations of the Word Segmentation Abilities of Infants

Peter W. Jusczyk

Department of Psychology and Center for Cognitive Science, State University of New York at Buffalo, NY, USA

Evidence that I presented at the last meeting in Yokohama indicated that English-learning infants first show some capacity for segmenting words from fluent speech at about 7.5 months of age. Further studies that we have conducted suggest that English-learning infants initially rely on a prosodically based strategy which may cause them to mis-segment words beginning with weak syllables. However, by 10.5 months, English-learners appear to draw on other potential sources of information to locate word boundaries, even for words beginning with weak syllables. Our studies suggest that infants do retain information about the sound patterns of words for up to 24 hours, and that they generalize across different talker's pronunciations of the same words.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Jusczyk, Peter W. (1996): "Investigations of the word segmentation abilities of infants", In ICSLP-1996, 1561-1564.