Friday, September 07, 2007

A sense for rhythm? (Part 3)

Last Monday, together with four colleagues from the University of Amsterdam, I was asked to speak at the Opening of the Academic Year.

I started with talking about a wonderful study by Erin Hannon and Sandra Trehub (University of Cornell and University of Toronto) called "Metrical Categories in Infancy and Adulthood", and gratefully used some of the sound examples they made available online.

Interestingly, a "one-trial" version of their experiment failed miserably :-) The sign language interpreter picked up the differences immediately and communicated them so clearly to the audience that I had to ask the audience to close their eyes for the other sound examples!

The overall message was, motivated by e.g. the Hannon & Trehub study: Listen as often and as varied as you can, it will improve your sense for rhythm!

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