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Consonant clusters in disordered speech: constraints and correspondence patterns*

  • Steven B. Chin (a1) and Daniel A. Dinnsen (a1)


Comparison of patterns of cluster realization from 47 children ranging in age from 3;4 to 6;8 with functional (non-organic) speech disorders with those reported in the literature for normal acquisition reveals that these patterns are essentially the same for both groups. Using a two-level generative phonology for children's independent systems, further analysis of cluster realizations by means of feature geometry and under-specification theory reveals that there are systematic and principled relationships between adult representations of clusters and children's underlying representations and between children's underlying representations and their phonetic representations. With special emphasis on coalescence phenomena, it is suggested that the apparent diversity in children's cluster realizations can be reduced to four constraints on the form of underlying and phonetic representations.


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Department of Linguistics, Indiana University, Memorial Hall 322, Bloomington, IN 47405, USA.


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We are grateful to Phil Connell, Stuart Davis, Mary Elbert, Judith A. Gierut and two anonymous reviewers for their assistance in the preparation of this paper and for their helpful comments during its development. A version of this paper was presented at the Fifteenth Annual Boston University Conference on Language Development. This work was supported in part by grants to Indiana University from the National Institutes of Health, Nos. NS20976 and DC00260.



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Consonant clusters in disordered speech: constraints and correspondence patterns*

  • Steven B. Chin (a1) and Daniel A. Dinnsen (a1)


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