Influence of a standard electropalatography artificial palate upon articulation: A preliminary study
Objective: This study investigated the influence of a standard electropalatography (EPG) palate upon speech articulation in 3 normal speakers under standard EPG testing conditions. Patients and Methods: Three adult females aged 26, 31 and 34 years read the experimental phrase ‘say CV again’ 5 times under 3 experimental conditions: normal speech (without a palate in situ), 45 min after EPG palate insertion and 3 h after EPG palate insertion. Consonants and vowels commonly used in EPG research were studied and included /t/, /s/ and /ʃ / in the /i/, /a/ and /u/ vowel environments. Perceptual and acoustic analysis of the data was completed. Results: The results revealed varied patterns of adaptation across the 3 participants. Perceptual analysis suggested that 2 of the participants adapted to the presence of the palate; however, 1 did not. The presence of the palate resulted in significant changes to consonant duration for all 3 participants. Spectrally, production of /t/ was unaffected by the presence of the palate, while articulation of fricatives varied across the participants. Conclusion: Paired with a previous study examining the effects of an EPG palate upon speech articulation [McLeod S, Searl J: Am J Speech Lang Pathol 2006; 15: 192-206], the present data suggest that researchers and clinicians alike should be aware of the potential perturbing effects of the palate.