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Plasticity of categories in speech perception and production

Lindsay, Shane; Clayards, Meghan; Gennari, Silvia; Gaskell, M. Gareth


Meghan Clayards

Silvia Gennari

M. Gareth Gaskell


While perceptual categories exhibit plasticity following recently heard speech, evidence of effects on production has been mixed. We tested the influences of perceptual plasticity on production with an implicit distributional learning paradigm. In Experiment 1, we exposed participants to an unlabelled bimodal distribution of voice onset time (VOT) using bilabial stop consonants, with a longer category boundary than is typical. Participants’ perceptual category boundaries shifted towards longer VOT, with a congruent increase in production VOT. Experiment 2 found evidence of perceptual transfer of these shifts to a different speaker and different syllables, and different words in production. Experiment 3 showed no shifts following exposure to a VOT boundary shorter than typical. We conclude that when listeners adjust their perceptual category boundaries, these changes may affect production categories, consistent with models where speech perception and production categories are linked, but with category boundaries influencing the link between perception and production.


Lindsay, S., Clayards, M., Gennari, S., & Gaskell, M. G. (2022). Plasticity of categories in speech perception and production. Language, Cognition and Neuroscience,

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Dec 3, 2021
Online Publication Date Jan 10, 2022
Publication Date 2022
Deposit Date May 9, 2022
Publicly Available Date Jan 11, 2023
Journal Language, Cognition and Neuroscience
Print ISSN 2327-3798
Electronic ISSN 2327-3801
Publisher Taylor & Francis
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Keywords Speech perception; Speech production; Phonetics; Psycholinguistics; Statistical learning
Public URL


Accepted manuscript (1.6 Mb)

Copyright Statement
©2022 The authors. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the written permission of the copyright holder

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