Speech Prosody 2010

Chicago, IL, USA
May 10-14, 2010

The Effect of Global F0 Contour Shape on the Perception of Tonal Timing Contrasts in American English Intonation

Jonathan Barnes (1), Nanette Veilleux (2), Alejna Brugos (1), Stefanie Shattuck-Hufnagel (3)

(1) Boston University, (2) Simmons College, (3) Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA

Results from an ABX perception task involving the contrast between default- and late-timed pitch accents ((L+)H* and L*+H) in American English intonation demonstrate that pitch movement curvature, in addition to turning-point alignment, plays a role in determining listener categorization. A model based on Tonal Center of Gravity, effectively integrating both F0 turning-point and global contour-shape information, is shown to provide a better account of these results than can a model based on turning-points alone. Results suggest further that additional factors, such as scaling of the pitch accent in the frequency domain, may also play a role.

Index Terms: intonation contrasts, F0 alignment, F0 turning points, tonal center of gravity, global F0 contour shape

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Barnes, Jonathan / Veilleux, Nanette / Brugos, Alejna / Shattuck-Hufnagel, Stefanie (2010): "The effect of global F0 contour shape on the perception of tonal timing contrasts in American English intonation", In SP-2010, paper 445.