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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Dichotic perception of automatic speech in normal subjects Ben-Dat, Evelyn Judith


In the present study, the dichotic perception of "automatic" speech in normal subjects was investigated. Four dichotic tapes were presented, under both single-pair and double-paired conditions. The first tape consisted of "automatic" word pairs, and the second contained "propositional" word pairs. The third and fourth tapes, which were identical but presented on opposite channels, consisted of "automatic-propositional" word pairs. Subjects responded orally to the stimuli. Differences in order of report and distribution of errors were evaluated by means of Wilcoxon's Matched-Pairs Signed-Ranks Test. A significant right ear advantage was found for both automatic and propositional stimuli, indicating lateralization of processing to the dominant hemisphere. Responses to the third and fourth tape varied significantly, suggesting that automatic and propositional words constitute different modes of language, and therefore undergo different sub-cortical processing. The results of the present investigation are examined in relation to the existing model of automatic speech representation. Certain contradictions are noted. The limitations of the experiment, as well as suggestions for further research, are discussed.

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