The acquisition of vowel discriminations by nonhuman primates.

Robert D Hienz, J. V. Brady

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Three adult male baboons were trained on a psychophysical procedure to discriminate five synthetic, steady-state vowel sounds [a), (ae), (c), (U), and (epsilon] from one another. A pulsed train of one vowel comprised the reference stimulus during a session. Animals were trained to press a lever and release the lever only when this reference vowel sound changed to one of the comparison vowels. All animals learned the vowel discriminations rapidly and, once learned, performed the discriminations at the 95%-100% correct level. During the initial acquisition of the discriminations, however, percent correct detections were higher for those vowels with greater spectral differences from the reference vowel. For some cases, the detection scores correlated closely with differences between first formant peaks, while for others the detection scores correlated more closely with differences between second formant peaks. Once the discriminations were acquired, no discriminability differences were apparent among the different vowels. Underlying discriminability differences were still present, however, and could be revealed by giving a minor tranquilizer (diazepam) that lowered discrimination performances. These drug-induced decrements in vowel discriminability were also correlated with spectral differences, with lower vowel discriminability scores found for those vowels with smaller spectral differences from the reference vowel.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)186-194
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of the Acoustical Society of America
Volume84
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 1988

Fingerprint

primates
vowels
discrimination
acquisition
levers
tranquilizers
animals
Discrimination
Nonhuman Primate
baboons
acoustics
Spectrality
stimuli

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Acoustics and Ultrasonics

Cite this

The acquisition of vowel discriminations by nonhuman primates. / Hienz, Robert D; Brady, J. V.

In: Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, Vol. 84, No. 1, 07.1988, p. 186-194.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

@article{2ac03d3673984ada999aae23bc24f383,
title = "The acquisition of vowel discriminations by nonhuman primates.",
abstract = "Three adult male baboons were trained on a psychophysical procedure to discriminate five synthetic, steady-state vowel sounds [a), (ae), (c), (U), and (epsilon] from one another. A pulsed train of one vowel comprised the reference stimulus during a session. Animals were trained to press a lever and release the lever only when this reference vowel sound changed to one of the comparison vowels. All animals learned the vowel discriminations rapidly and, once learned, performed the discriminations at the 95{\%}-100{\%} correct level. During the initial acquisition of the discriminations, however, percent correct detections were higher for those vowels with greater spectral differences from the reference vowel. For some cases, the detection scores correlated closely with differences between first formant peaks, while for others the detection scores correlated more closely with differences between second formant peaks. Once the discriminations were acquired, no discriminability differences were apparent among the different vowels. Underlying discriminability differences were still present, however, and could be revealed by giving a minor tranquilizer (diazepam) that lowered discrimination performances. These drug-induced decrements in vowel discriminability were also correlated with spectral differences, with lower vowel discriminability scores found for those vowels with smaller spectral differences from the reference vowel.",
author = "Hienz, {Robert D} and Brady, {J. V.}",
year = "1988",
month = "7",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "84",
pages = "186--194",
journal = "Journal of the Acoustical Society of America",
issn = "0001-4966",
publisher = "Acoustical Society of America",
number = "1",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - The acquisition of vowel discriminations by nonhuman primates.

AU - Hienz, Robert D

AU - Brady, J. V.

PY - 1988/7

Y1 - 1988/7

N2 - Three adult male baboons were trained on a psychophysical procedure to discriminate five synthetic, steady-state vowel sounds [a), (ae), (c), (U), and (epsilon] from one another. A pulsed train of one vowel comprised the reference stimulus during a session. Animals were trained to press a lever and release the lever only when this reference vowel sound changed to one of the comparison vowels. All animals learned the vowel discriminations rapidly and, once learned, performed the discriminations at the 95%-100% correct level. During the initial acquisition of the discriminations, however, percent correct detections were higher for those vowels with greater spectral differences from the reference vowel. For some cases, the detection scores correlated closely with differences between first formant peaks, while for others the detection scores correlated more closely with differences between second formant peaks. Once the discriminations were acquired, no discriminability differences were apparent among the different vowels. Underlying discriminability differences were still present, however, and could be revealed by giving a minor tranquilizer (diazepam) that lowered discrimination performances. These drug-induced decrements in vowel discriminability were also correlated with spectral differences, with lower vowel discriminability scores found for those vowels with smaller spectral differences from the reference vowel.

AB - Three adult male baboons were trained on a psychophysical procedure to discriminate five synthetic, steady-state vowel sounds [a), (ae), (c), (U), and (epsilon] from one another. A pulsed train of one vowel comprised the reference stimulus during a session. Animals were trained to press a lever and release the lever only when this reference vowel sound changed to one of the comparison vowels. All animals learned the vowel discriminations rapidly and, once learned, performed the discriminations at the 95%-100% correct level. During the initial acquisition of the discriminations, however, percent correct detections were higher for those vowels with greater spectral differences from the reference vowel. For some cases, the detection scores correlated closely with differences between first formant peaks, while for others the detection scores correlated more closely with differences between second formant peaks. Once the discriminations were acquired, no discriminability differences were apparent among the different vowels. Underlying discriminability differences were still present, however, and could be revealed by giving a minor tranquilizer (diazepam) that lowered discrimination performances. These drug-induced decrements in vowel discriminability were also correlated with spectral differences, with lower vowel discriminability scores found for those vowels with smaller spectral differences from the reference vowel.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=0024041063&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=0024041063&partnerID=8YFLogxK

M3 - Article

C2 - 3411047

AN - SCOPUS:0024041063

VL - 84

SP - 186

EP - 194

JO - Journal of the Acoustical Society of America

JF - Journal of the Acoustical Society of America

SN - 0001-4966

IS - 1

ER -