Job Talk: Ms. Erica Davis

Event Details:

  • Start: 8 February 2018 5:00 pm
  • End: 8 February 2018 6:00 pm
  • Venue: Friedman Building – Room 355
  • Categories: Speech Language Pathology


TITLE: Implicational Relationships: A cross-linguistic, longitudinal investigation

ABSTRACT: My current research focuses on evaluating the theoretical and empirical issues with using implicational relationships (i.e., that a marked or complex sound or phonological process implies the presence of an unmarked or simpler sound or process) for the treatment of speech sound disorders. I engage in a critical discussion of using the notion of universal markedness to explain aspects of child phonological development. First, I conducted six detailed longitudinal case studies documenting typical phonological systems in English, French, German, and Portuguese, as well as atypical English. Then, as universal markedness could not account for the data, I investigate whether a phonetically driven view of markedness could apply. This inquiry led me to advocate a markedness-by-mechanism (Hume 2011) approach to phonological development, which combines perceptual distinctiveness, phonetic variability, and articulatory simplicity; factors, which in child language, are exaggerated due to anatomical and motor differences. I combine this view of phonetically conditioned markedness with the A-map model (McAllister Byun, Inkelas & Rose 2016), which provides a link relating perceptual targets to the dimensions involved in the motor-acoustic mapping of these objects. Building on the tendencies observed in children’s production patterns, and on the tenets of the A-map, there is an acoustic and articulatory relationship between clinical speech targets and treatment outcomes.

BIOGRAPHY: Erica Davis is a Ph.D. Candidate in Linguistics who specializes in early phonological and phonetic development. Before returning to school to pursue her Doctorate, Erica completed her MSc in Speech-Language Pathology at the University of Alberta. She is interested in advocating the best practice for the treatment of phonological and phonetic disorders, by furthering our understanding of the underpinnings of such disorders. Her current studies at Memorial University have focused on investigating the theoretical and empirical validity of implicational relationships, in terms of whether certain sounds and phonological processes imply the presence of other related sounds/processes as has been purported in the literature. Erica is also interested in creating assessment tools to better serve underrepresented populations. As such, she has collaborated on the development of several assessment tools including The Resonance Screening Tool for speakers of Northern East Cree, which is designed to aid in the diagnosis of resonance disorders in the preschool and school-aged Northern East Cree speaking population.