The objective of the project for the first funding period was to investigate articulatory processes encoding morphological information, and their relation to lexical proficiency. We found that suffixal morphology changes the phonetic encoding even in the stem and that speakers become more capable to do so with increased proficiency. In a joint study with project VAR, we computationally modelled durations of word-final S by means of NDL. Our findings indicate that articulatory processes are modulated by how well the relation between the phonetic signal and morphological meaning is learned by speakers.
The second phase of the ART project aims to consolidate the results obtained in the first phase of the project by replicating the results obtained with EMA using ultrasound recordings and by investigating EMA recordings in the KEC corpus of spontaneous German conversations. ultrasound, as well as the study of articulation in spontaneous speech, are essential for assessing the ecological validity of the present results, which were all obtained in laboratory conditions using a slightly invasive recording technique. The project will also broaden its scope by studying articulation in a richly inflecting language, Polish, and by extending the computational modeling of speech production with NDL to, for instance, New Zealand English, as well as to homophonic exponents in German.