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Academic Paper

Title: Segmenting words from natural speech: subsegmental variation in segmental cues
Author: C Anton Rytting
Institution: Ohio State University
Author: Chris Brew
Email: click here TO access email
Institution: Ohio State University
Author: Eric Fosler-Lussier
Institution: Ohio State University
Linguistic Field: Phonology
Abstract: Most computational models of word segmentation are trained and tested on transcripts of speech, rather than the speech itself, and assume that speech is converted into a sequence of symbols prior to word segmentation. We present a way of representing speech corpora that avoids this assumption, and preserves acoustic variation present in speech. We use this new representation to re-evaluate a key computational model of word segmentation. One finding is that high levels of phonetic variability degrade the model's performance. While robustness to phonetic variability may be intrinsically valuable, this finding needs to be complemented by parallel studies of the actual abilities of children to segment phonetically variable speech.


This article appears IN Journal of Child Language Vol. 37, Issue 3, which you can READ on Cambridge's site or on LINGUIST .

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