9 Speech Production and Perception

Experimental Psychology


  1. Carol A. Fowler PhD1,2,
  2. Khalil Iskarous PhD3

Published Online: 26 SEP 2012

DOI: 10.1002/9781118133880.hop204009

Handbook of Psychology, Second Edition

Handbook of Psychology, Second Edition

How to Cite

Fowler, C. A. and Iskarous, K. 2012. Speech Production and Perception. Handbook of Psychology, Second Edition. 4:III:9.

Author Information

  1. 1

    Haskins Laboratories, New Haven, CT

  2. 2

    University of Connecticut, Department of Psychology, Storrs, CT

  3. 3

    University of Southern California, Department of Linguistics, Los Angeles, California

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 26 SEP 2012


The chapter provides an overview of speech production and perception by summarizing research findings and theories in four domains. We describe theories of “phonological competence” in linguistics that characterize what language users know about the sound systems and word forms of their language. Next we summarize research and explanations of “phonological planning” whereby language users intending to speak develop a plan for an utterance at the level of language forms. Research findings include spontaneous errors of speech perception as collected both in nature and in the laboratory and nonerrorful productions made in behavioral research settings. Third, we summarize research, theories, and models of speech production, addressing such issues as the nature of “targets” of speech production (acoustic or gestural) and the importance of “motor equivalence” for understanding goals of production. Finally, we review research and theorizing about “speech perception,” focusing on research illuminating the nature of perceptual objects. An important idea linking theorizing across the domains is that of “parity,” the idea that the nature of language forms as known, planned, produced, and perceived have to be the same for language to serve its public communicative function.


  • speech perception;
  • speech production;
  • phonological planning;
  • phonological competence;
  • parity