A Perceptual, Acoustic-Phonetic, and Linguistic Analysis of Cluttering


Kimberly Helm

Date of Graduation

Summer 1997


Master of Science in Communication Sciences and Disorders


Communication Sciences and Disorders

Committee Chair

Klaas Bakker


A speech sample of a 10 year old boy diagnosed as a clutterer was analyzed perceptually and spectrographically to determine what, if any, unique features distinguished his cluttered speech. These analyses were conducted on ten utterances that were judged to contain cluttering. The subject repeated the ten utterances as fluently as possible and those utterances were subjected to the sane analyses. A linguistic analysis was conducted on all utterances considered to be cluttered and not cluttered in order to determine a possible influence of linguistic complexity on the fluency of this subject. The results of the analyses revealed a relatively high incidence of spectrographic abnormalities, many of which were not immediately evident from a perceptual analysis alone. These abnormalities tended to cluster, suggesting a periodic speech disorganization during intervals when cluttering was evident. Although these observations could be interpreted to be the result of speech motor related demands, linguistic analysis suggested a possible link between complexity (i.e. number of morphemes and number of verbs per utterance) and the incidence of cluttering dysfluency. Future research and clinical implications are discussed.

Subject Categories

Communication Sciences and Disorders


© Kimberly Helm