Ninth International Conference on Spoken Language Processing

Pittsburgh, PA, USA
September 17-21, 2006

Effects of Word Frequency on the Acoustic Durations of Affixes

Mark Pluymaekers, Mirjam Ernestus, R. Harald Baayen

Radboud Universiteit Nijmegen, The Netherlands

This study investigates whether the acoustic durations of derivational affixes in Dutch are affected by the frequency of the word they occur in. In a word naming experiment, subjects were presented with a large number of words containing one of the affixes ge-, ver-, ont, or -lijk. Their responses were recorded on DAT tapes, and the durations of the affixes were measured using Automatic Speech Recognition technology. To investigate whether frequency also affected durations when speech rate was high, the presentation rate of the stimuli was varied. The results show that a higher frequency of the word as a whole led to shorter acoustic realizations for all affixes. Furthermore, affixes became shorter as the presentation rate of the stimuli increased. There was no interaction between word frequency and presentation rate, suggesting that the frequency effect also applies in situations in which the speed of articulation is very high.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Pluymaekers, Mark / Ernestus, Mirjam / Baayen, R. Harald (2006): "Effects of word frequency on the acoustic durations of affixes", In INTERSPEECH-2006, paper 1241-Tue1FoP.1.