Velopharyngeal Function During Speech Production of Older Adults

Date of Graduation

Summer 1995


Master of Science in Communication Sciences and Disorders


Communication Sciences and Disorders

Committee Chair

Ronald Netsell


The possible effect of aging on velopharyngeal function during speech production was studied. Six normal younger adults (20-40 years of age) and six older adults (80+ years of age) were asked to produce consonant-vowel syllable repetitions, as well as word and sentence repetitions containing abutting nasal-oral consonant contrast. These world and sentence tasks were produced at a conversational rate, and a fast rate. An analysis of variance revealed no main effect for group during the syllable repetition task. However, significant main effects were found for group, rate, and ther interaction of group x rate during the word and sentence tasks. Older adults demonstrated more instances of increased nasal air flow than younger adults during production of words and sentences. Both groups produced more nasal air flows during the fast rate condition. Compared to the younger group, the older group produced more nasal air flows during the fast rate condition. Possible reason for increased nasal air flows in order adults were discussed. Qualitative individual differences in nasal air flow patterns also were examined.

Subject Categories

Communication Sciences and Disorders


© Stacey Lee Shull