Orthography Influences the Perception and Production of Speech

Kathleen Rastle*, Samantha F. McCormick, Linda Bayliss, Colin J. Davis

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    82 Citations (Scopus)


    One intriguing question in language research concerns the extent to which orthographic information impacts on spoken word processing. Previous research has faced a number of methodological difficulties and has not reached a definitive conclusion. Our research addresses these difficulties by capitalizing on recent developments in the area of word learning. Participants were trained to criterion on a set of associations between novel pictures and novel spoken words. Spelling-sound consistent or spelling-sound inconsistent spellings were introduced on the 2nd day, and the influence of these spellings on speech processing was assessed on the 3rd day. Results showed significant orthographic effects on speech perception and speech production in a situation in which spelling-sound consistency was manipulated with perfect experimental control. Results are discussed in terms of a highly interactive language system in which there is a rapid and automatic flow of activation in both directions between orthographic and phonological representations.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1588-1594
    Number of pages7
    JournalJournal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition
    Issue number6
    Publication statusPublished - Nov 2011


    • Literacy
    • Orthography
    • Speech perception
    • Speech production
    • Word learning


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