Document Type


Date of Degree

Spring 2012

Degree Name

MA (Master of Arts)

Degree In

Speech Pathology and Audiology

First Advisor

Moon, Jerald

First Committee Member

Karnell, Michael

Second Committee Member

Bryant, Karen


The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of variation of speaking rate, gender and age on aerodynamic and acoustic measure of the VP function in 19 typically-developing young children aged 4-7 years. Additionally, this study aimed to compare results from children from this study to that of Gauster, Yunusova and Zajac (2010). Aerodynamic measurements such as oral pressure, nasal pressure, nasal flow, and VP area were taken at the /m/ and /p/ segments in the word "hamper" (HAMPER) and the initial /p/ of "puppy" in the utterance "Buy Bobby a puppy" (BBP). Nasalance and nasalance distance was collected for the utterances "Buy Bobby a puppy" and "Mama made lemon jam" (MMJ). Speech tasks were performed in 4 different self-regulated rates including normal, fast, slow, and slowest. Results indicated that only the aerodynamic measures in the /m/ of HAMPER were affected by speaking rate. Rate affected the nasalance measures of BBP and MMJ and nasalance distance. Gender affected the nasalance of BBP, and age affected nasalance distance. Additionally, children varied from the adults in Gauster et al. (2010) in differences in rate, gender and variability. In summary, rate, gender, and age group had various effects on the measures relating to VP function in healthy children, and should therefore be considered when working with children with VP dysfunction.


children, rate, velopharyngeal, VP


vi, 74 pages


Includes bibliographical references (pages 70-74).


Copyright 2012 Whitney Rachel Achenbaugh