Collet, G. 1 , Serniclaes, W. 1, 2 , Leybaert, J. 3 & Colin, C. 1
1 Unité de Recherche en Neurosciences Cognitives, Université libre de Bruxelles (U.L.B.), Belgique
2 Laboratoire Psychologie de la Perception, CNRS, Université Paris Descartes, France
3 Laboratoire Cognition Langage Développement, Université libre de Bruxelles (U.L.B.), Belgique
Might auditory training improve categorical perception in French SLI children? Using a perceptual fading task center across the French phonological VOT boundary during four weeks, one group of SLI children was training to discriminate difference across the /d?/ and /t?/ French phonological boundary. They were compared to another group of SLI children who did not participate to the training. Results showed that children from the training group learned to better discriminate phonological differences and to inhibit allophonic (i.e. subphonemic) differences. Also, training to discriminate cross-boundary differences improved phonological awareness. These promising results showed that, as far as voicing is concerned, auditory training can modify auditory-perceptual performances in children with SLI. With some difficulties at the beginning of training, children can progressively improve their performance on a task pointing specifically their difficulties with voicing. Their categorical perception improved significantly after training and this improvement was also generalized to phonological awareness. Further studies should allow evaluating the consequences of cross-boundary training on reading performances.