The effect of speech production on speech perception in children with a unilateral cleft palate in comparison to a control group of typically developing children.

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This study investigated the way children with a cleft palate and age-matching controls perceive mispronunciations. The children with a cleft palate are assumed to have difficulties with coronal and labial stops because of their speech impairment, therefore coronal and labial stops were used as targets. It was expected that children with a cleft palate show less of a mispronunciation effect (and therefore treat mispronunciations and correct mispronunciations the same/similar) in comparison to their controls. For the experiment, 18-month-old and 30-month-old children with a cleft palate were compared to age-matching controls. In addition, N-CDI data was collected. The results showed no proof for the claim that children with a cleft palate might perceive mispronunciations differently in comparison to the controls, for both age-groups. Lastly, it was tested whether vocabulary sizes correlated with the mispronunciation effects. This was only the case for the 18-month-olds and their productive vocabulary: children of 18 months that had a larger productive vocabulary size, were better at distinguishing between mispronunciations and correct pronunciations. However, we can conclude that this study could not find proof for the possibility that the speech production of children with a cleft palate influenced their perception.
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