Speech perception differences in children with dyslexia and persistent speech delay

Kathryn L. Cabbage, Tiffany P. Hogan, Thomas D. Carrell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Purpose Deficits in phonology, which are related to the organization and retrieval of speech sounds in the mental lexicon, are associated with two distinct clinical disorders, dyslexia and persistent speech delay. Research has shown associated speech perception deficits in individuals with these disorders, but the degree to which the underlying perceptual deficits overlap is unclear. In this study, we investigated how children with dyslexia, children with persistent speech delay and their typically-developing peers differed in speech perception when listening to speech stimuli that varied in non-linguistic temporal fine structure acoustic characteristics. Method Thirty-six children were classified into three groups (dyslexia, speech sound disorder, typically-developing; n = 12 in each group) based on their reading and speech articulation skills. Novel single-word sine-wave speech stimuli was aurally presented to the children. Results There were no group differences between children with dyslexia and their typically-developing peers, but the children with persistent speech delay had more difficulty than the other two groups. In particular, the children with persistent speech delay had difficulty recognizing words with limited acoustic structure when the stimuli involved a phoneme that they misarticulated in their own speech. Conclusions These results suggest a specific difficulty in the perception of temporal fine structure in children with persistent speech delay.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)14-25
Number of pages12
JournalSpeech Communication
StatePublished - Sep 1 2016


  • Dyslexia
  • Persistent speech delay
  • Phonological processing
  • Speech perception
  • Speech sound disorder

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Modeling and Simulation
  • Communication
  • Language and Linguistics
  • Linguistics and Language
  • Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition
  • Computer Science Applications

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