Vocalizations produced in the second year of life in response to speaking and singing

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We compared infants’ vocalizations produced both in singing and speaking conditions. In this study we collected the vocalizations of 12 infants aged between 12 and 24 months. Each 30-minute session integrated two stimulus conditions – speaking and singing. An acoustic analysis was developed in order to measure both segmental properties and melodic and rhythmic features. The results showed significant differences in the vocalizations to which the two stimulus conditions gave rise: in the duration of the vocalizations and the duration of the phonation, the number of nuclei and the duration of each nucleus present in the vocalizations. In particular, the greater extension of vowels in vocalizations in response to the singing condition seems to be distinctive from those produced in response to the speaking condition. This may reveal that there is a precocious distinction between the singing voice and the speaking voice. The acoustic analysis that we used shows promise in monitoring children’s sequential singing development from early infancy onwards.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-12
Number of pages12
JournalPsychology Of Music
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2018


  • Acoustics
  • Early childhood
  • Infants
  • Singing
  • Speech
  • Voice


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