Achieving constancy in spoken word identification: Time course of talker normalization

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28 Citations (Scopus)


This event-related potential (ERP) study examines the time course of context-dependent talker normalization in spoken word identification. We found three ERP components, the N1 (100-220. ms), the N400 (250-500. ms) and the Late Positive Component (500-800. ms), which are conjectured to involve (a) auditory processing, (b) talker normalization and lexical retrieval, and (c) decisional process/lexical selection respectively. Talker normalization likely occurs in the time window of the N400 and overlaps with the lexical retrieval process. Compared with the nonspeech context, the speech contexts, no matter whether they have semantic content or not, enable listeners to tune to a talker's pitch range. In this way, speech contexts induce more efficient talker normalization during the activation of potential lexical candidates and lead to more accurate selection of the intended word in spoken word identification.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)193-202
Number of pages10
JournalBrain and Language
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Cantonese
  • Context
  • Event-related potential
  • Late Positive Component
  • Level tones
  • N1
  • N400
  • Talker normalization
  • Tone perception

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Language and Linguistics
  • Linguistics and Language
  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Speech and Hearing


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