Young Language Science Scholar: Dr. Ander Beristain, St. Louis University
February 9, 2024
9:00 am
Foster Auditorium, Pattee and Paterno Library

Young Language Science Scholar: Dr. Ander Beristain, St. Louis University

Distinguished Language Science Colloquium

“Speech Aerodynamics and Language Acquisition in Multilingual Populations”

Dr. Anders Beristain
Assistant Professor, Saint Louis University
Department of Language, Literatures, and Cultures

Speech aerodynamics refers to the physiological nature of language, i.e., the movement of air in and out of our oral and nasal apertures to produce sounds. This research technique allows for the study of oral-nasal airflows, among others. Most aerodynamic studies have focused solely on first language production (Cho et al., 2002; Cohn, 1993; Shosted, 2006; Solé, 1992) and are limited by small sample size (Kochetov, 2020a,b). In this talk, Ander Beristain will focus on larger populations that speak Spanish as a first, second, or heritage language, and will present oral and nasal airflow aerodynamic data to describe phonetic and phonological processes in Spanish and English. Specifically, the topics include coarticulatory vowel nasalization (CVN), Voice Onset Time (VOT), and resyllabification (Beristain, 2023a,b, in progress). As will be shown, the linguistic proficiency exhibited in the second language will be a determinant factor for successfully
achieving the physiological features of CVN and VOT, which has previously been reported in the segmental acquisition literature (Flege, 1995; Flege & Bohn, 2021). As far as VOT, heritage speakers of Spanish show asymmetrical control of aerodynamic and acoustic features of stop in English. Finally, syllable structure (within and across word boundaries) plays a prominent role on CVN patterns.

Note: This talk will be accompanied by tips for maximizing student research productivity in a Language Science program.