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Brain Lang. 2015 May;144:26-34. doi: 10.1016/j.bandl.2015.03.008. Epub 2015 Apr 13.

Evidence for a rhythm perception deficit in children who stutter.

Author information

1
Department of Communicative Sciences and Disorders, Michigan State University, 1026 Red Cedar Rd, East Lansing, MI 48824, USA. Electronic address: wielande@msu.edu.
2
Department of Psychology and Neuroscience Program, Michigan State University, 316 Physics Rd, East Lansing, MI 48824, USA. Electronic address: dmcauley@msu.edu.
3
Department of Communicative Sciences and Disorders, Michigan State University, 1026 Red Cedar Rd, East Lansing, MI 48824, USA. Electronic address: ldilley@msu.edu.
4
Department of Psychiatry, University of Michigan, Rachel Upjohn Building, 4250 Plymouth Rd, Ann Arbor, MI 48109, USA. Electronic address: sooeunc@med.umich.edu.

Abstract

Stuttering is a neurodevelopmental disorder that affects the timing and rhythmic flow of speech production. When speech is synchronized with an external rhythmic pacing signal (e.g., a metronome), even severe stuttering can be markedly alleviated, suggesting that people who stutter may have difficulty generating an internal rhythm to pace their speech. To investigate this possibility, children who stutter and typically-developing children (n=17 per group, aged 6-11 years) were compared in terms of their auditory rhythm discrimination abilities of simple and complex rhythms. Children who stutter showed worse rhythm discrimination than typically-developing children. These findings provide the first evidence of impaired rhythm perception in children who stutter, supporting the conclusion that developmental stuttering may be associated with a deficit in rhythm processing.

KEYWORDS:

beat perception; developmental stuttering; rhythm; temporal processing; timing

PMID:
25880903
PMCID:
PMC5382013
DOI:
10.1016/j.bandl.2015.03.008
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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