Auditory sequence analysis and phonological skill

Proc Biol Sci. 2012 Nov 7;279(1746):4496-504. doi: 10.1098/rspb.2012.1817. Epub 2012 Sep 5.


This work tests the relationship between auditory and phonological skill in a non-selected cohort of 238 school students (age 11) with the specific hypothesis that sound-sequence analysis would be more relevant to phonological skill than the analysis of basic, single sounds. Auditory processing was assessed across the domains of pitch, time and timbre; a combination of six standard tests of literacy and language ability was used to assess phonological skill. A significant correlation between general auditory and phonological skill was demonstrated, plus a significant, specific correlation between measures of phonological skill and the auditory analysis of short sequences in pitch and time. The data support a limited but significant link between auditory and phonological ability with a specific role for sound-sequence analysis, and provide a possible new focus for auditory training strategies to aid language development in early adolescence.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Acoustic Stimulation*
  • Auditory Threshold
  • Child
  • Cohort Studies
  • England
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Language Development
  • Male
  • Pitch Discrimination
  • Pitch Perception
  • Reading
  • Speech Perception*
  • Time Factors