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Assignment 2: Categorical Perception: Identification and Discrimination

Assignment 2: Categorical Perception: Identification and Discrimination

Across the United States and the world, people speak English with many different accents. How is it that we can understand what is being said whether one speaks with a Southern “drawl,” a New England “clip,” or a Western “twang?” Categorical perception may be one of the ways that our perceptual processes help us understand words spoken with different accents.

Access the following CogLab demonstrations and follow the instructions to completeboth demonstrations (these are listed under the Speech & Language tab).

  • Categorical Perception: Identification
  • Categorical Perception: Discrimination

Using the textbook and module readings, the Argosy University online library resources, and the Internet, research the effect of training on one’s ability to make perceptual discriminations.

Based on the demonstrations and your research, address the following:

  • Define categorical perception. Differentiate between identification and discrimination.
  • Explain whether your personal experimental results for both demonstrations follow patterns similar to the predicted experimental results.
  • In many situations, you may be forced to make categorical judgments. Name a job in which someone has to categorize people or things that actually fall on a continuum. Describe the categorization this person would have to make.
  • Describe your views on why it is useful to have categorical speech perception.
  • Experience and training can affect your ability to make perceptual discriminations. Explain whether you agree or disagree with this statement.

Support your answers with adequate reasoning and scholarly research and references.

Write a 2–3-page paper in Word format. Be sure to include a title page and a reference page. Apply APA standards to citation of sources. Use the following file naming convention: LastnameFirstInitial_M4_A2.doc.






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Categorical perception is the knowledge of percept invariance’s in sensory phenomena that can be diverse along a continuum. In speech perception research, categorical perception of consonants and vowels has been assessed by experiments that involve discrimination and identification.  In categorical perception, discrimination sounds difficult within category than discrimination of sounds across category boundary. The test of discrimination speech sounds uses various laboratory tasks which have been designed and utilized. These tasks indicate whether the sounds of a pair are different or the same (Cowles, 2010).  In the other….


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