Physiologic Studies Provide New Perspectives on Early Speech Development Although certain speech development milestones are readily observable, the developmental course of speech motor control is largely unknown. However, recent advances in facial motion tracking systems have been used to investigate articulator movements in children and the findings from these studies are being used to further our understanding of the ... Article
Article  |   October 01, 2010
Physiologic Studies Provide New Perspectives on Early Speech Development
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Erin M. Wilson
    Waisman Center, University of Wisconsin–Madison, Madison, WI
  • Ignatius S. B. Nip
    School of Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences, San Diego State University, San Diego, CA
Article Information
Development / Speech, Voice & Prosody / Articles
Article   |   October 01, 2010
Physiologic Studies Provide New Perspectives on Early Speech Development
SIG 5 Perspectives on Speech Science and Orofacial Disorders, October 2010, Vol. 20, 29-36. doi:10.1044/ssod20.2.29
SIG 5 Perspectives on Speech Science and Orofacial Disorders, October 2010, Vol. 20, 29-36. doi:10.1044/ssod20.2.29
Abstract

Although certain speech development milestones are readily observable, the developmental course of speech motor control is largely unknown. However, recent advances in facial motion tracking systems have been used to investigate articulator movements in children and the findings from these studies are being used to further our understanding of the physiologic basis of typical and disordered speech development. Physiologic work has revealed that the emergence of speech is highly dependent on the lack of flexibility in the early oromotor system. It also has been determined that the progression of speech motor development is non-linear, a finding that has motivated researchers to investigate how variables such as oromotor control, cognition, and linguistic factors affect speech development in the form of catalysts and constraints. Physiologic data are also being used to determine if non-speech oromotor behaviors play a role in the development of speech. This improved understanding of the physiology underlying speech, as well as the factors influencing its progression, helps inform our understanding of speech motor control in children with disordered speech and provide a framework for theory-driven therapeutic approaches to treatment.

This work has been supported by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Foundation's New Century Scholars Research Grant. The authors would like to thank Dr. Jordan Green for his insight.
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