Musical Sophistication and the Effect of Complexity on Auditory Discrimination in Finnish Speakers

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http://hdl.handle.net/10138/223770

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Dawson , C , Aalto , D , Simko , J , Vainio , M & Tervaniemi , M 2017 , ' Musical Sophistication and the Effect of Complexity on Auditory Discrimination in Finnish Speakers ' , Frontiers in Neuroscience , vol. 11 , 213 . https://doi.org/10.3389/fnins.2017.00213

Title: Musical Sophistication and the Effect of Complexity on Auditory Discrimination in Finnish Speakers
Author: Dawson, Caitlin; Aalto, Daniel; Simko, Juraj; Vainio, Martti; Tervaniemi, Mari
Contributor: University of Helsinki, Cognitive Brain Research Unit
University of Helsinki, University of Alberta
University of Helsinki, University of Helsinki
University of Helsinki, University of Helsinki
University of Helsinki, Cognitive Brain Research Unit
Date: 2017-04-13
Language: eng
Number of pages: 11
Belongs to series: Frontiers in Neuroscience
ISSN: 1662-453X
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10138/223770
Abstract: Musical experiences and native language are both known to affect auditory processing. The present work aims to disentangle the influences of native language phonology and musicality on behavioral and subcortical sound feature processing in a population of musically diverse Finnish speakers as well as to investigate the specificity of enhancement from musical training. Finnish speakers are highly sensitive to duration cues since in Finnish, vowel and consonant duration determine word meaning. Using a correlational approach with a set of behavioral sound feature discrimination tasks, brainstem recordings, and a musical sophistication questionnaire, we find no evidence for an association between musical sophistication and more precise duration processing in Finnish speakers either in the auditory brainstem response or in behavioral tasks, but they do show an enhanced pitch discrimination compared to Finnish speakers with less musical experience and show greater duration modulation in a complex task. These results are consistent with a ceiling effect set for certain sound features which corresponds to the phonology of the native language, leaving an opportunity for music experience-based enhancement of sound features not explicitly encoded in the language (such as pitch, which is not explicitly encoded in Finnish). Finally, the pattern of duration modulation in more musically sophisticated Finnish speakers suggests integrated feature processing for greater efficiency in a real world musical situation. These results have implications for research into the specificity of plasticity in the auditory system as well as to the effects of interaction of specific language features with musical experiences.
Subject: quantity language
Finish
musicality
auditory processing
discrimination
brainstem
BRAIN-STEM RESPONSES
LANGUAGE EXPERIENCE
QUANTITY LANGUAGE
HEAD SIZE
MUSICIANS
SOUND
DURATION
SPEECH
PLASTICITY
REPRESENTATION
515 Psychology
6161 Phonetics
6162 Cognitive science
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