The author analyzes the juridical profile that the phenomenon of mobbing assumes within the Italian legal system, emphasizing that the English term of current usage does not designate any specific legal entity as such but simply refers, in summary fashion, to deeds and behaviours that need to be qualified according to the law in vigour. The normative frame of reference for mobbing is found in article 2087 of the Civil code, which states, as an open, teleologically oriented norm, the employer's obligation to safeguard the moral person of the employee; hence the onus is on the interpreter, essentially, to evaluate if there has been, in actual fact, a contravention of this safeguarded legal right. The author then discusses profiles that intersect with mobbing (or behaviours perceived as such) drawing on other cases regulated by the law such as the safeguarding of professionality (art. 2103 of the Civil code), and underlines that often mobbing ends by being construed as a mere accompaniment to, if not duplication of, other typical cases. Finally, the author discusses aspects of the judicial process related to the allegation and proof of the facts constituting the offence, and to the damage, in its various non patrimonial components.
Feghali, Maksoud N.
This book teaches the Arabic Lebanese dialect through topics such as food, clothing, transportation, and leisure activities. It also provides background material on the Arab World in general and the region where Lebanese Arabic is spoken or understood--Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, Palestine--in particular. This language guide is based on the phonetic…
Aresi, Giovanni; Moore, Simon; Marta, Elena
To examine changes in alcohol intake and consequences in Italian students studying abroad. Italian exchange students planning to study abroad were invited to report on their drinking and alcohol-related negative consequences before and after their time abroad. After excluding those who abstained throughout, data on 121 students were analysed and showed that they tended to consume more alcohol and experience more alcohol-related negative consequences compared to their pre-departure levels. The added alcohol risk of study abroad for Italian students merits consideration of possible opportunities for intervention. © The Author 2016. Medical Council on Alcohol and Oxford University Press. All rights reserved.
Considerable progress has been made in recent years in the development of dialogue systems that support robust and efficient human-machine interaction using spoken language. Spoken dialogue technology allows various interactive applications to be built and used for practical purposes, and research focuses on issues that aim to increase the system's communicative competence by including aspects of error correction, cooperation, multimodality, and adaptation in context. This book gives a comprehensive view of state-of-the-art techniques that are used to build spoken dialogue systems. It provides
Lipski, John M.
The need to teach students speaking skills in Spanish, and to choose among the many standard dialects spoken in the Hispanic world (as well as literary and colloquial speech), presents a challenge to the Spanish teacher. Some phonetic considerations helpful in solving these problems are offered. (CHK)
Issues involved in teaching and assessing communicative competence are identified and applied to adolescent native English speakers with low levels of academic achievement. A distinction is drawn between transactional versus interactional speech, short versus long speaking turns, and spoken language influenced or not influenced by written…
Morozzi, Gabriella; Bellisai, Francesca; Fineschi, Irene; Scaccia, Francesca; Pucci, Gabriella; Simpatico, Antonella; Tampoia, Marilina; Chialà, Alessandra; Lapadula, Giovanni; Galeazzi, Mauro
The aim of our study was to determine the prevalence, clinical significance of antibodies to individual histone components and to evaluate their correlation with other autoantibody specificities in a cohort of Italian SSc patients. Some authors, demonstrated high prevalence of anti-histone antibodies in Italian SSc patients, associated with cardiac and renal involvement, suggesting a prognostic value of these autoantibodies; however, these data need to be confirmed. Serum from 112 adult SSc patients, classified as diffuse (dc) and limited cutaneous (lc) SSc subsets were analyzed for autoantibodies by indirect immunofluorescence, fluoroenzyme immunoassay and enzyme immunoassay. AHA were found in 13 patients (11.6%), nine with lcSSc and four with dcSSc. Among them, five patients were anti-Scl70+ and four were anti-CENP B+. The presence of AHA was not associated with multi-organ involvement or with diffuse subset, as already described. Anti-Scl70 was detected in 43% of patients, anti-CENP B in 32% and anti-RNA polymerase III in 7.1%. We confirmed the association between anti-Scl70 antibodies and pulmonary fibrosis (OR 15.75, p < 0.0001). In our experience, the very low prevalence of AHA in Italian SSc patients and the lack of association with clinical manifestations suggest that this test is of little clinical use; however, it would be worthwhile extending the study to a larger population of patients.
Goldman, Jerry; Renals, Steve; Bird, Steven; de Jong, Franciska; Federico, Marcello; Fleischhauer, Carl; Kornbluh, Mark; Lamel, Lori; Oard, Douglas W; Stewart, Claire; Wright, Richard
Spoken-word audio collections cover many domains, including radio and television broadcasts, oral narratives, governmental proceedings, lectures, and telephone conversations. The collection, access, and preservation of such data is stimulated by political, economic, cultural, and educational needs. This paper outlines the major issues in the field, reviews the current state of technology, examines the rapidly changing policy issues relating to privacy and copyright, and presents issues relati...
Full Text Available Despite the abundance of electronic corpora now available to researchers, corpora of natural speech are still relatively rare and relatively costly. This paper suggests reasons why spoken corpora are needed, despite the formidable problems of construction. The multiple purposes of such corpora and the involvement of very different kinds of language communities in such projects mean that there is no one single blueprint for the design, markup, and distribution of spoken corpora. A number of different spoken corpora are reviewed to illustrate a range of possibilities for the construction of spoken corpora.
Gautreau, Aurore; Hoen, Michel; Meunier, Fanny
This study aimed to characterize the linguistic interference that occurs during speech-in-speech comprehension by combining offline and online measures, which included an intelligibility task (at a -5 dB Signal-to-Noise Ratio) and 2 lexical decision tasks (at a -5 dB and 0 dB SNR) that were performed with French spoken target words. In these 3 experiments we always compared the masking effects of speech backgrounds (i.e., 4-talker babble) that were produced in the same language as the target language (i.e., French) or in unknown foreign languages (i.e., Irish and Italian) to the masking effects of corresponding non-speech backgrounds (i.e., speech-derived fluctuating noise). The fluctuating noise contained similar spectro-temporal information as babble but lacked linguistic information. At -5 dB SNR, both tasks revealed significantly divergent results between the unknown languages (i.e., Irish and Italian) with Italian and French hindering French target word identification to a similar extent, whereas Irish led to significantly better performances on these tasks. By comparing the performances obtained with speech and fluctuating noise backgrounds, we were able to evaluate the effect of each language. The intelligibility task showed a significant difference between babble and fluctuating noise for French, Irish and Italian, suggesting acoustic and linguistic effects for each language. However, the lexical decision task, which reduces the effect of post-lexical interference, appeared to be more accurate, as it only revealed a linguistic effect for French. Thus, although French and Italian had equivalent masking effects on French word identification, the nature of their interference was different. This finding suggests that the differences observed between the masking effects of Italian and Irish can be explained at an acoustic level but not at a linguistic level.
Garraffa, Maria; Beveridge, Madeleine; Sorace, Antonella
We report the results of a study which tested receptive Italian grammatical competence and general cognitive abilities in bilingual Italian–Sardinian children and age-matched monolingual Italian children attending the first and second year of primary school in the Nuoro province of Sardinia, where Sardinian is still widely spoken. The results show that across age groups the performance of Sardinian–Italian bilingual children is in most cases indistinguishable from that of monolingual Italian children, in terms of both Italian language skills and general cognitive abilities. However, where there are differences, these emerge gradually over time and are mostly in favor of bilingual children. PMID:26733903
Lauren B. Collister
Full Text Available Twenty listeners were exposed to spoken and sung passages in English produced by three trained vocalists. Passages included representative words extracted from a large database of vocal lyrics, including both popular and classical repertoires. Target words were set within spoken or sung carrier phrases. Sung carrier phrases were selected from classical vocal melodies. Roughly a quarter of all words sung by an unaccompanied soloist were misheard. Sung passages showed a seven-fold decrease in intelligibility compared with their spoken counterparts. The perceptual mistakes occurring with vowels replicate previous studies showing the centralization of vowels. Significant confusions are also evident for consonants, especially voiced stops and nasals.
Full Text Available The commercial successes of spoken dialog systems in the developed world provide encouragement for their use in the developing world, where speech could play a role in the dissemination of relevant information in local languages. We investigate...
Qu, Qingqing; Damian, Markus F
Extensive evidence from alphabetic languages demonstrates a role of orthography in the processing of spoken words. Because alphabetic systems explicitly code speech sounds, such effects are perhaps not surprising. However, it is less clear whether orthographic codes are involuntarily accessed from spoken words in languages with non-alphabetic systems, in which the sound-spelling correspondence is largely arbitrary. We investigated the role of orthography via a semantic relatedness judgment task: native Mandarin speakers judged whether or not spoken word pairs were related in meaning. Word pairs were either semantically related, orthographically related, or unrelated. Results showed that relatedness judgments were made faster for word pairs that were semantically related than for unrelated word pairs. Critically, orthographic overlap on semantically unrelated word pairs induced a significant increase in response latencies. These findings indicate that orthographic information is involuntarily accessed in spoken-word recognition, even in a non-alphabetic language such as Chinese.
In Monitoring Adaptive Spoken Dialog Systems, authors Alexander Schmitt and Wolfgang Minker investigate statistical approaches that allow for recognition of negative dialog patterns in Spoken Dialog Systems (SDS). The presented stochastic methods allow a flexible, portable and accurate use. Beginning with the foundations of machine learning and pattern recognition, this monograph examines how frequently users show negative emotions in spoken dialog systems and develop novel approaches to speech-based emotion recognition using hybrid approach to model emotions. The authors make use of statistical methods based on acoustic, linguistic and contextual features to examine the relationship between the interaction flow and the occurrence of emotions using non-acted recordings several thousand real users from commercial and non-commercial SDS. Additionally, the authors present novel statistical methods that spot problems within a dialog based on interaction patterns. The approaches enable future SDS to offer m...
Chen, Wei; Mostow, Jack; Aist, Gregory
Free-form spoken input would be the easiest and most natural way for young children to communicate to an intelligent tutoring system. However, achieving such a capability poses a challenge both to instruction design and to automatic speech recognition. To address the difficulties of accepting such input, we adopt the framework of predictable…
Roč. 68, č. 2 (2017), s. 305-315 ISSN 0021-5597 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA15-01116S Institutional support: RVO:68378092 Keywords : correlative conjunctions * spoken Czech * cohesion Subject RIV: AI - Linguistics OBOR OECD: Linguistics http://www.juls.savba.sk/ediela/jc/2017/2/jc17-02.pdf
Gabriel, Christoph; Kireva, Elena
A remarkable example of Spanish-Italian contact is the Spanish variety spoken in Buenos Aires (Porteño), which is said to be prosodically "Italianized" due to migration-induced contact. The change in Porteño prosody has been interpreted as a result of transfer from the first language (L1) that occurred when Italian immigrants learned…
Brimo, Danielle; Lund, Emily; Sapp, Alysha
Syntax is a language skill purported to support children's reading comprehension. However, researchers who have examined whether children with average and below-average reading comprehension score significantly different on spoken-syntax assessments report inconsistent results. To determine if differences in how syntax is measured affect whether children with average and below-average reading comprehension score significantly different on spoken-syntax assessments. Studies that included a group comparison design, children with average and below-average reading comprehension, and a spoken-syntax assessment were selected for review. Fourteen articles from a total of 1281 reviewed met the inclusionary criteria. The 14 articles were coded for the age of the children, score on the reading comprehension assessment, type of spoken-syntax assessment, type of syntax construct measured and score on the spoken-syntax assessment. A random-effects model was used to analyze the difference between the effect sizes of the types of spoken-syntax assessments and the difference between the effect sizes of the syntax construct measured. There was a significant difference between children with average and below-average reading comprehension on spoken-syntax assessments. Those with average and below-average reading comprehension scored significantly different on spoken-syntax assessments when norm-referenced and researcher-created assessments were compared. However, when the type of construct was compared, children with average and below-average reading comprehension scored significantly different on assessments that measured knowledge of spoken syntax, but not on assessments that measured awareness of spoken syntax. The results of this meta-analysis confirmed that the type of spoken-syntax assessment, whether norm-referenced or researcher-created, did not explain why some researchers reported that there were no significant differences between children with average and below
Introducing Spoken Dialogue Systems into Intelligent Environments outlines the formalisms of a novel knowledge-driven framework for spoken dialogue management and presents the implementation of a model-based Adaptive Spoken Dialogue Manager(ASDM) called OwlSpeak. The authors have identified three stakeholders that potentially influence the behavior of the ASDM: the user, the SDS, and a complex Intelligent Environment (IE) consisting of various devices, services, and task descriptions. The theoretical foundation of a working ontology-based spoken dialogue description framework, the prototype implementation of the ASDM, and the evaluation activities that are presented as part of this book contribute to the ongoing spoken dialogue research by establishing the fertile ground of model-based adaptive spoken dialogue management. This monograph is ideal for advanced undergraduate students, PhD students, and postdocs as well as academic and industrial researchers and developers in speech and multimodal interactive ...
Thomassen, Bjørn; Forlenza, Rosario
assumptions that have substituted for thought and that have perpetuated prejudices both within and outside Italy’s borders. Grounded in meticulous historical and ethnological research, Italian Modernities deserves as wide an audience as its scholarship is deep.” (Michael Herzfeld, Ernest E. Monrad Professor...
The aim of the study was to investigate how raters come to their decisions when judging spoken vocabulary. Segmental rating was introduced to quantify raters' decision-making process. It is hoped that this simulated study brings fresh insight to future methodological considerations with spoken data. Twenty trainee raters assessed five Chinese…
Full Text Available A key problem in spoken language identification (LID is to design effective representations which are specific to language information. For example, in recent years, representations based on both phonotactic and acoustic features have proven their effectiveness for LID. Although advances in machine learning have led to significant improvements, LID performance is still lacking, especially for short duration speech utterances. With the hypothesis that language information is weak and represented only latently in speech, and is largely dependent on the statistical properties of the speech content, existing representations may be insufficient. Furthermore they may be susceptible to the variations caused by different speakers, specific content of the speech segments, and background noise. To address this, we propose using Deep Bottleneck Features (DBF for spoken LID, motivated by the success of Deep Neural Networks (DNN in speech recognition. We show that DBFs can form a low-dimensional compact representation of the original inputs with a powerful descriptive and discriminative capability. To evaluate the effectiveness of this, we design two acoustic models, termed DBF-TV and parallel DBF-TV (PDBF-TV, using a DBF based i-vector representation for each speech utterance. Results on NIST language recognition evaluation 2009 (LRE09 show significant improvements over state-of-the-art systems. By fusing the output of phonotactic and acoustic approaches, we achieve an EER of 1.08%, 1.89% and 7.01% for 30 s, 10 s and 3 s test utterances respectively. Furthermore, various DBF configurations have been extensively evaluated, and an optimal system proposed.
Crowe, Kathryn; McLeod, Sharynne
The purpose of this research was to investigate factors that influence professionals' guidance of parents of children with hearing loss regarding spoken language multilingualism and spoken language choice. Sixteen professionals who provide services to children and young people with hearing loss completed an online survey, rating the importance of…
Full Text Available In this paper we describe a preliminary, work-in-progress Spoken Language Understanding Software (SLUS with tailored feedback options, which uses interactive spoken language interface to teach Iraqi Arabic and culture to second language learners. The SLUS analyzes input speech by the second language learner and grades for correct pronunciation in terms of supra-segmental and rudimentary segmental errors such as missing consonants. We evaluated this software on training data with the help of two native speakers, and found that the software recorded an accuracy of around 70% in law and order domain. For future work, we plan to develop similar systems for multiple languages.
Šimáčková, Š.; Podlipský, V.J.; Chládková, K.
As a western Slavic language of the Indo-European family, Czech is closest to Slovak and Polish. It is spoken as a native language by nearly 10 million people in the Czech Republic (Czech Statistical Office n.d.). About two million people living abroad, mostly in the USA, Canada, Austria, Germany,
Glenn-Applegate, Katherine; Breit-Smith, Allison; Justice, Laura M.; Piasta, Shayne B.
Research Findings: Artfulness is rarely considered as an indicator of quality in young children's spoken narratives. Although some studies have examined artfulness in the narratives of children 5 and older, no studies to date have focused on the artfulness of preschoolers' oral narratives. This study examined the artfulness of fictional spoken…
Reviews what is known about Esperanto as a home language and first language. Recorded cases of Esperanto-speaking families are known since 1919, and in nearly all of the approximately 350 families documented, the language is spoken to the children by the father. The data suggests that this "artificial bilingualism" can be as successful…
This article addresses key issues and considerations for teachers wanting to incorporate spoken grammar activities into their own teaching and also focuses on six common features of spoken grammar, with practical activities and suggestions for teaching them in the language classroom. The hope is that this discussion of spoken grammar and its place…
Full text: Italy's step out from nuclear activities in 1987 deeply affected an industry that, in the previous years, had managed to grow up in quality and technology levels to meet the nuclear standards. Only a few companies were able to partially retain their skills through activities abroad. The decommissioning program represents a new challenge for the Italian industry at large and will require a consistent effort to properly qualify the potential suppliers. On the other side, a program with such implications in terms of investments and so depending from social aspects cannot be effectively implemented without a significant involvement of the local industry. Essential conditions for the success are a reliable program, as well as a careful supply management scheme, which must facilitate aggregation of skills spread among different subjects. 'Human Resources: Maintaining a Nuclear Culture in Italy' Bruno Panella Politecnico di Torino, Giuseppe Forasassi, Universita di Pisa, Inter-University Consortium for the Nuclear Technological Research (CIRTEN). After a brief history of the nuclear engineering education in Italy within the international and national nuclear energy scenario, the present situation, with reference to the Italian universities, is shown. In order to maintain a nuclear culture in Italy the solution, exploited with different peculiarities in each University, is to carry out high quality research activities in reciprocal collaboration (mostly within the CIRTEN inter university Consortium) as well as with the Industry and research Organisations and to collaborate actively in establishing a stable network and a synergy of teaching activities in Europe in the field of Nuclear Engineering Education. The aim is to maintain at a high level and as updated as possible the Italian educational offer in nuclear engineering and also to attract the best students for the enrolment. (author)
Full Text Available The study of discourse is the study of using language in actual use. In this article, the writer is trying to investigate the phonological features, either segmental or supra-segmental, in the spoken discourse of Indonesian university students. The data were taken from the recordings of 15 conversations by 30 students of Bina Nusantara University who are taking English Entrant subject (TOEFL –IBT. Finally, the writer is in opinion that the students are still influenced by their first language in their spoken discourse. This results in English with Indonesian accent. Even though it does not cause misunderstanding at the moment, this may become problematic if they have to communicate in the real world.
Sulpizio, Simone; Colombo, Lucia
We examined the development of stress assignment in reading Italian aloud. We investigated frequency effects as a marker of the use of item-specific lexical knowledge in assigning stress together with stress dominance and stress neighbourhood (the number of words sharing both stress and ending) as markers of distributional information regarding properties of the lexicon extracted from spoken language. We tested second- and fourth-graders in a reading-aloud experiment including high- and low-frequency words and nonwords. Results show that despite the regularity of orthography-phonology mappings in Italian and the predominant use of phonological recoding procedures, item-specific lexical knowledge is also used, even by beginning readers. The frequency effect was significant and did not increase with age, while stress errors on low-frequency words decreased with increasing grade. Stress neighbourhood increasingly affected stress assignment on nonwords with older children. Taken together, our findings show that both item-specific knowledge and general information about stress distribution are relevant in children's reading, suggesting the simultaneous use of both lexical and sublexical information. Moreover, as the reading system develops, and knowledge about the relative distribution of stress neighbourhood increases, larger grain-size units are also exploited.
Hannagan, Thomas; Magnuson, James S.; Grainger, Jonathan
How do we map the rapid input of spoken language onto phonological and lexical representations over time? Attempts at psychologically-tractable computational models of spoken word recognition tend either to ignore time or to transform the temporal input into a spatial representation. TRACE, a connectionist model with broad and deep coverage of speech perception and spoken word recognition phenomena, takes the latter approach, using exclusively time-specific units at every level of representation. TRACE reduplicates featural, phonemic, and lexical inputs at every time step in a large memory trace, with rich interconnections (excitatory forward and backward connections between levels and inhibitory links within levels). As the length of the memory trace is increased, or as the phoneme and lexical inventory of the model is increased to a realistic size, this reduplication of time- (temporal position) specific units leads to a dramatic proliferation of units and connections, begging the question of whether a more efficient approach is possible. Our starting point is the observation that models of visual object recognition—including visual word recognition—have grappled with the problem of spatial invariance, and arrived at solutions other than a fully-reduplicative strategy like that of TRACE. This inspires a new model of spoken word recognition that combines time-specific phoneme representations similar to those in TRACE with higher-level representations based on string kernels: temporally independent (time invariant) diphone and lexical units. This reduces the number of necessary units and connections by several orders of magnitude relative to TRACE. Critically, we compare the new model to TRACE on a set of key phenomena, demonstrating that the new model inherits much of the behavior of TRACE and that the drastic computational savings do not come at the cost of explanatory power. PMID:24058349
Rosset, Sophie; Garnier-Rizet, Martine; Devillers, Laurence; Natural Interaction with Robots, Knowbots and Smartphones : Putting Spoken Dialog Systems into Practice
These proceedings presents the state-of-the-art in spoken dialog systems with applications in robotics, knowledge access and communication. It addresses specifically: 1. Dialog for interacting with smartphones; 2. Dialog for Open Domain knowledge access; 3. Dialog for robot interaction; 4. Mediated dialog (including crosslingual dialog involving Speech Translation); and, 5. Dialog quality evaluation. These articles were presented at the IWSDS 2012 workshop.
Kyle Tran Myhre
Full Text Available In "Dust," spoken word poet Kyle "Guante" Tran Myhre crafts a multi-vocal exploration of the connections between the internment of Japanese Americans during World War II and the current struggles against xenophobia in general and Islamophobia specifically. Weaving together personal narrative, quotes from multiple voices, and "verse journalism" (a term coined by Gwendolyn Brooks, the poem seeks to bridge past and present in order to inform a more just future.
Jacques Melitz; Farid Toubal
We construct new series for common native language and common spoken language for 195 countries, which we use together with series for common official language and linguis-tic proximity in order to draw inferences about (1) the aggregate impact of all linguistic factors on bilateral trade, (2) whether the linguistic influences come from ethnicity and trust or ease of communication, and (3) in so far they come from ease of communication, to what extent trans-lation and interpreters play a role...
To assess the effects of data-driven instruction (DDI) on spoken language outcomes of children with cochlear implants and hearing aids. Retrospective, matched-pairs comparison of post-treatment speech/language data of children who did and did not receive DDI. Private, spoken-language preschool for children with hearing loss. Eleven matched pairs of children with cochlear implants who attended the same spoken language preschool. Groups were matched for age of hearing device fitting, time in the program, degree of predevice fitting hearing loss, sex, and age at testing. Daily informal language samples were collected and analyzed over a 2-year period, per preschool protocol. Annual informal and formal spoken language assessments in articulation, vocabulary, and omnibus language were administered at the end of three time intervals: baseline, end of year one, and end of year two. The primary outcome measures were total raw score performance of spontaneous utterance sentence types and syntax element use as measured by the Teacher Assessment of Spoken Language (TASL). In addition, standardized assessments (the Clinical Evaluation of Language Fundamentals--Preschool Version 2 (CELF-P2), the Expressive One-Word Picture Vocabulary Test (EOWPVT), the Receptive One-Word Picture Vocabulary Test (ROWPVT), and the Goldman-Fristoe Test of Articulation 2 (GFTA2)) were also administered and compared with the control group. The DDI group demonstrated significantly higher raw scores on the TASL each year of the study. The DDI group also achieved statistically significant higher scores for total language on the CELF-P and expressive vocabulary on the EOWPVT, but not for articulation nor receptive vocabulary. Post-hoc assessment revealed that 78% of the students in the DDI group achieved scores in the average range compared with 59% in the control group. The preliminary results of this study support further investigation regarding DDI to investigate whether this method can consistently
Full Text Available Introduction A range of papers focusing on Italian cases of ICTs use and changes in society are presented here in this NETCOM issue. A national research group on Geography of Information Society was founded in 2007 and hosted by the Italian Geographical Society later evolved in a specialty group within AgeI, the Association of Italian Geographers. This issue brings together papers from members of the Italian specialty group along the general theme of Internet mediation in everyday life. A pre...
The only book on the market to specifically address its audience, Recording Voiceover is the comprehensive guide for engineers looking to understand the aspects of capturing the spoken word.Discussing all phases of the recording session, Recording Voiceover addresses everything from microphone recommendations for voice recording to pre-production considerations, including setting up the studio, working with and directing the voice talent, and strategies for reducing or eliminating distracting noise elements found in human speech.Recording Voiceover features in-depth, specific recommendations f
Brøndsted, Tom; Larsen, Henrik Legind; Larsen, Lars Bo
This paper addresses the problem of information and service accessibility in mobile devices with limited resources. A solution is developed and tested through a prototype that applies state-of-the-art Distributed Speech Recognition (DSR) and knowledge-based Information Retrieval (IR) processing...... for spoken query answering. For the DSR part, a configurable DSR system is implemented on the basis of the ETSI-DSR advanced front-end and the SPHINX IV recognizer. For the knowledge-based IR part, a distributed system solution is developed for fast retrieval of the most relevant documents, with a text...
Full Text Available This article aims to describe the sociolinguistic situation of two Italian-speaking communities in Santa Catarina. It presents a sociolinguistic panorama of Nova Trento and Nova Veneza from the 19th century, emphasizing the most important aspects of the history of Italian immigrants in Brazil, as well as the main factors that affected the use of Italian language varieties, and residents’ views and attitudes regarding the languages spoken in this part of southern Brazil. From the beginning of Italian immigration to Brazil the immigrants experienced different historical circumstances that have led to the current state of their dialects, mainly the dictatorship of Getúlio Vargas. But after almost one hundred and fifty years the dialects are still spoken and they have become part of the Brazilian cultural heritage.
Whether it was thought of positively or negatively, Italy is a popular topic of discussion in Elizabethan literature. Some Elizabethan writers mimic Italian writers and incorporate Italian ideas into their own works, while other writers alter Italian literary conventions and openly attack Italian morals. This range of positive and negative…
Zou, Lijuan; Desroches, Amy S.; Liu, Youyi; Xia, Zhichao; Shu, Hua
Orthographic influences in spoken word recognition have been previously examined in alphabetic languages. However, it is unknown whether orthographic information affects spoken word recognition in Chinese, which has a clean dissociation between orthography (O) and phonology (P). The present study investigated orthographic effects using event…
Nicodemus, Brenda; Emmorey, Karen
Spoken language (unimodal) interpreters often prefer to interpret from their non-dominant language (L2) into their native language (L1). Anecdotally, signed language (bimodal) interpreters express the opposite bias, preferring to interpret from L1 (spoken language) into L2 (signed language). We conducted a large survey study ("N" =…
The comparatively small vowel inventory of Bantu languages leads young Bantu learners to produce "undifferentiations," so that, for example, the spoken forms of "hat,""hut,""heart" and "hurt" sound the same to a British ear. The two criteria for a non-native speaker's spoken performance are…
This article reviews chronometric and neuroimaging evidence on attention to spoken word planning, using the WEAVER++ model as theoretical framework. First, chronometric studies on the time to initiate vocal responding and gaze shifting suggest that spoken word planning may require some attention,
Carter, Ronald; McCarthy, Michael
This article synthesises progress made in the description of spoken (especially conversational) grammar over the 20 years since the authors published a paper in this journal arguing for a re-thinking of grammatical description and pedagogy based on spoken corpus evidence. We begin with a glance back at the 16th century and the teaching of Latin…
Inegbeboh, Bridget O.
Female students have been discriminated against right from birth in their various cultures and this affects the way they perform in Spoken English class, and how they rate themselves. They have been conditioned to believe that the male gender is superior to the female gender, so they leave the male students to excel in spoken English, while they…
Assessing spoken-language educational interpreting: Measuring up and measuring right. Lenelle Foster, Adriaan Cupido. Abstract. This article, primarily, presents a critical evaluation of the development and refinement of the assessment instrument used to assess formally the spoken-language educational interpreters at ...
Spoken language corpora for the nine official African languages of South Africa. Jens Allwood, AP Hendrikse. Abstract. In this paper we give an outline of a corpus planning project which aims to develop linguistic resources for the nine official African languages of South Africa in the form of corpora, more specifically spoken ...
This article aims at the feature analysis of four expository essays (Text A/B/C/D) written by secondary school students with a focus on the differences between spoken and written language. Texts C and D are better written compared with the other two (Texts A&B) which are considered more spoken in language using. The language features are…
Video is becoming a prevalent medium for e-learning. Lecture videos contain text information in both the presentation slides and lecturer's speech. This paper examines the relative utility of automatically recovered text from these sources for lecture video retrieval. To extract the visual information, we automatically detect slides within the videos and apply optical character recognition to obtain their text. Automatic speech recognition is used similarly to extract spoken text from the recorded audio. We perform controlled experiments with manually created ground truth for both the slide and spoken text from more than 60 hours of lecture video. We compare the automatically extracted slide and spoken text in terms of accuracy relative to ground truth, overlap with one another, and utility for video retrieval. Results reveal that automatically recovered slide text and spoken text contain different content with varying error profiles. Experiments demonstrate that automatically extracted slide text enables higher precision video retrieval than automatically recovered spoken text.
Leonard, Matthew K; Ferjan Ramirez, Naja; Torres, Christina; Hatrak, Marla; Mayberry, Rachel I; Halgren, Eric
WE COMBINED MAGNETOENCEPHALOGRAPHY (MEG) AND MAGNETIC RESONANCE IMAGING (MRI) TO EXAMINE HOW SENSORY MODALITY, LANGUAGE TYPE, AND LANGUAGE PROFICIENCY INTERACT DURING TWO FUNDAMENTAL STAGES OF WORD PROCESSING: (1) an early word encoding stage, and (2) a later supramodal lexico-semantic stage. Adult native English speakers who were learning American Sign Language (ASL) performed a semantic task for spoken and written English words, and ASL signs. During the early time window, written words evoked responses in left ventral occipitotemporal cortex, and spoken words in left superior temporal cortex. Signed words evoked activity in right intraparietal sulcus that was marginally greater than for written words. During the later time window, all three types of words showed significant activity in the classical left fronto-temporal language network, the first demonstration of such activity in individuals with so little second language (L2) instruction in sign. In addition, a dissociation between semantic congruity effects and overall MEG response magnitude for ASL responses suggested shallower and more effortful processing, presumably reflecting novice L2 learning. Consistent with previous research on non-dominant language processing in spoken languages, the L2 ASL learners also showed recruitment of right hemisphere and lateral occipital cortex. These results demonstrate that late lexico-semantic processing utilizes a common substrate, independent of modality, and that proficiency effects in sign language are comparable to those in spoken language.
Larsen, Lars Bo
This work is centred on the methods and problems associated with defining and measuring the usability of Spoken Dialogue Systems (SDS). The starting point is the fact that speech based interfaces has several times during the last 20 years fallen short of the high expectations and predictions held...... by industry, researchers and analysts. Several studies in the literature of SDS indicate that this can be ascribed to a lack of attention from the speech technology community towards the usability of such systems. The experimental results presented in this work are based on a field trial with the OVID home...... model roughly explains 50% of the observed variance in the user satisfaction based on measures of task success and speech recognition accuracy, a result similar to those obtained at AT&T. The applied methods are discussed and evaluated critically....
I Nengah Sudipa
Full Text Available This article investigates the spoken ability for German students using Bahasa Indonesia (BI. They have studied it for six weeks in IBSN Program at Udayana University, Bali-Indonesia. The data was collected at the time the students sat for the mid-term oral test and was further analyzed with reference to the standard usage of BI. The result suggests that most students managed to express several concepts related to (1 LOCATION; (2 TIME; (3 TRANSPORT; (4 PURPOSE; (5 TRANSACTION; (6 IMPRESSION; (7 REASON; (8 FOOD AND BEVERAGE, and (9 NUMBER AND PERSON. The only problem few students might encounter is due to the influence from their own language system called interference, especially in word order.
This study reports the results of a picture verification task assessing the interpretation of intra-sentential anaphora and cataphora in Italian by a group of English-Italian bilingual eight-year-olds, a group of age-matched Italian monolinguals, and a group of Italian monolingual adults. No significant differences between the groups were observed…
The energy sector in Italy, as in Europe and in many other areas of the world, is undergoing rapid and profound changes. The 1986 ratification of the European Single Act was intended to create a European internal market, where circulation of people, capital, goods, and services would reach the highest possible liberalization. In 1988, in the document The Energy Internal Market, the European Union (EU) commission stressed the need for creation of an internal energy market--free of obstacles--to increase security of supply, to reduce costs, and to strengthen the competitiveness of the European economic system. In 1990, the Community Council adopted directives to implement the EU energy sector. This article describes Italy's role as part of the EU energy sector. It covers the following topics: the Italian energy sector; electricity vs gas transportation; project finance; recent developments advance Italian power industry; specifying powerplant components -- Italian stype; buyers' guide to Italian equipment, services
Zhang, Qingfang; Wang, Cheng
The effects of word frequency (WF) and syllable frequency (SF) are well-established phenomena in domain such as spoken production in alphabetic languages. Chinese, as a non-alphabetic language, presents unique lexical and phonological properties in speech production. For example, the proximate unit of phonological encoding is syllable in Chinese but segments in Dutch, French or English. The present study investigated the effects of WF and SF, and their interaction in Chinese written and spoken production. Significant facilitatory WF and SF effects were observed in spoken as well as in written production. The SF effect in writing indicated that phonological properties (i.e., syllabic frequency) constrain orthographic output via a lexical route, at least, in Chinese written production. However, the SF effect over repetitions was divergent in both modalities: it was significant in the former two repetitions in spoken whereas it was significant in the second repetition only in written. Due to the fragility of the SF effect in writing, we suggest that the phonological influence in handwritten production is not mandatory and universal, and it is modulated by experimental manipulations. This provides evidence for the orthographic autonomy hypothesis, rather than the phonological mediation hypothesis. The absence of an interaction between WF and SF showed that the SF effect is independent of the WF effect in spoken and written output modalities. The implications of these results on written production models are discussed.
Full Text Available The effects of word frequency and syllable frequency are well-established phenomena in domain such as spoken production in alphabetic languages. Chinese, as a non-alphabetic language, presents unique lexical and phonological properties in speech production. For example, the proximate unit of phonological encoding is syllable in Chinese but segments in Dutch, French or English. The present study investigated the effects of word frequency and syllable frequency, and their interaction in Chinese written and spoken production. Significant facilitatory word frequency and syllable frequency effects were observed in spoken as well as in written production. The syllable frequency effect in writing indicated that phonological properties (i.e., syllabic frequency constrain orthographic output via a lexical route, at least, in Chinese written production. However, the syllable frequency effect over repetitions was divergent in both modalities: it was significant in the former two repetitions in spoken whereas it was significant in the second repetition only in written. Due to the fragility of the syllable frequency effect in writing, we suggest that the phonological influence in handwritten production is not mandatory and universal, and it is modulated by experimental manipulations. This provides evidence for the orthographic autonomy hypothesis, rather than the phonological mediation hypothesis. The absence of an interaction between word frequency and syllable frequency showed that the syllable frequency effect is independent of the word frequency effect in spoken and written output modalities. The implications of these results on written production models are discussed.
Bates, Madeleine; Ellard, Dan; Peterson, Pat; Shaked, Varda
.... In an effort to demonstrate the relevance of SIS technology to real-world military applications, BBN has undertaken the task of providing a spoken language interface to DART, a system for military...
The objective of this effort was to develop a prototype, hand-held or body-mounted spoken language translator to assist military and law enforcement personnel in interacting with non-English-speaking people...
Full Text Available As an experienced teacher of advanced learners of English I am deeply aware of recurrent problems which these learners experience as regards grammatical accuracy. In this paper, I focus on researching inaccuracies in the use of verbal categories. I draw the data from a spoken learner corpus LINDSEI_CZ and analyze the performance of 50 advanced (C1–C2 learners of English whose mother tongue is Czech. The main method used is Computer-aided Error Analysis within the larger framework of Learner Corpus Research. The results reveal that the key area of difficulty is the use of tenses and tense agreements, and especially the use of the present perfect. Other error-prone aspects are also described. The study also identifies a number of triggers which may lie at the root of the problems. The identification of these triggers reveals deficiencies in the teaching of grammar, mainly too much focus on decontextualized practice, use of potentially confusing rules, and the lack of attempt to deal with broader notions such as continuity and perfectiveness. Whilst the study is useful for the teachers of advanced learners, its pedagogical implications stretch to lower levels of proficiency as well.
Cooper, Angela; Bradlow, Ann R.
Prior research has demonstrated that listeners are sensitive to changes in the indexical (talker-specific) characteristics of speech input, suggesting that these signal-intrinsic features are integrally encoded in memory for spoken words. Given that listeners frequently must contend with concurrent environmental noise, to what extent do they also encode signal-extrinsic details? Native English listeners’ explicit memory for spoken English monosyllabic and disyllabic words was assessed as a fu...
Parisse , Christophe; Le Normand , Marie-Thérèse
International audience; The use of computer tools has led to major advances in the study of spoken language corpora. One area that has shown particular progress is the study of child language development. Although it is now easy to lexically tag every word in a spoken language corpus, one still has to choose between numerous ambiguous forms, especially with languages such as French or English, where more than 70% of words are ambiguous. Computational linguistics can now provide a fully automa...
This essay is a brief exploration of the related concepts of Italian Ethnicity and Italian Ethnic Identity via a Visual Sociological study of two geographically different venues — Italian American neighbourhoods in the United States and neighbourhoods in Rome, Italy. By studying the Vernacular Landscape (Jackson, 1984) via ...
Marcello Basili; Fulvio Fontini
This paper estimates cost efficiency and returns to scope of Italian investment firms during the period 1998-2002, following the stochastic frontier function approach. Results indicate a large inefficiency for Italian investment firms (with a high standard deviation across sample) and the absence of significant returns to scope
Agasisti, Tommaso; Arnaboldi, Michela; Azzone, Giovanni
This paper presents an investigation of management accounting in four major Italian universities, which have been struggling to build their strategy in a context of significant change. Following many OECD countries the Italian government has been changing its higher education system by giving more autonomy to universities. These changes pose a…
Adorno, Elvira, Ed.
This booklet of 15 reprinted letters sent in response to a query concerning the actual use of Italian in the United States designates various areas of professional application. Some reference to current Italian publications is included. It is hoped that these letters will help promote the study of Italian in American schools. (RL)
Wiseheart, Rebecca; Altmann, Lori J P
Individuals with dyslexia demonstrate syntactic difficulties on tasks of language comprehension, yet little is known about spoken language production in this population. To investigate whether spoken sentence production in college students with dyslexia is less proficient than in typical readers, and to determine whether group differences can be attributable to cognitive differences between groups. Fifty-one college students with and without dyslexia were asked to produce sentences from stimuli comprising a verb and two nouns. Verb types varied in argument structure and morphological form and nouns varied in animacy. Outcome measures were precision (measured by fluency, grammaticality and completeness) and efficiency (measured by response times). Vocabulary and working memory tests were also administered and used as predictors of sentence production performance. Relative to non-dyslexic peers, students with dyslexia responded significantly slower and produced sentences that were significantly less precise in terms of fluency, grammaticality and completeness. The primary predictors of precision and efficiency were working memory, which differed between groups, and vocabulary, which did not. College students with dyslexia were significantly less facile and flexible on this spoken sentence-production task than typical readers, which is consistent with previous studies of school-age children with dyslexia. Group differences in performance were traced primarily to limited working memory, and were somewhat mitigated by strong vocabulary. © 2017 Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists.
Wicherts, Jelte M.; Veldkamp, Coosje L. S.; Albiero, Paolo; Cubelli, Roberto
A survey in the United States revealed that an alarmingly large percentage of university psychologists admitted having used questionable research practices that can contaminate the research literature with false positive and biased findings. We conducted a replication of this study among Italian research psychologists to investigate whether these findings generalize to other countries. All the original materials were translated into Italian, and members of the Italian Association of Psychology were invited to participate via an online survey. The percentages of Italian psychologists who admitted to having used ten questionable research practices were similar to the results obtained in the United States although there were small but significant differences in self-admission rates for some QRPs. Nearly all researchers (88%) admitted using at least one of the practices, and researchers generally considered a practice possibly defensible if they admitted using it, but Italian researchers were much less likely than US researchers to consider a practice defensible. Participants’ estimates of the percentage of researchers who have used these practices were greater than the self-admission rates, and participants estimated that researchers would be unlikely to admit it. In written responses, participants argued that some of these practices are not questionable and they have used some practices because reviewers and journals demand it. The similarity of results obtained in the United States, this study, and a related study conducted in Germany suggest that adoption of these practices is an international phenomenon and is likely due to systemic features of the international research and publication processes. PMID:28296929
Soleymani, Zahra; Keramati, Nasrin; Rohani, Farzaneh; Jalaei, Shohre
To determine verbal intelligence and spoken language of children with phenylketonuria and to study the effect of age at diagnosis and phenylalanine plasma level on these abilities. Cross-sectional. Children with phenylketonuria were recruited from pediatric hospitals in 2012. Normal control subjects were recruited from kindergartens in Tehran. 30 phenylketonuria and 42 control subjects aged 4-6.5 years. Skills were compared between 3 phenylketonuria groups categorized by age at diagnosis/treatment, and between the phenylketonuria and control groups. Scores on Wechsler Preschool and Primary Scale of Intelligence for verbal and total intelligence, and Test of Language Development-Primary, third edition for spoken language, listening, speaking, semantics, syntax, and organization. The performance of control subjects was significantly better than that of early-treated subjects for all composite quotients from Test of Language Development and verbal intelligence (Pphenylketonuria subjects.
Nippold, Marilyn A; Frantz-Kaspar, Megan W; Vigeland, Laura M
In this study, we examined syntactic complexity in the spoken language samples of young adults. Its purpose was to contribute to the expanding knowledge base in later language development and to begin building a normative database of language samples that potentially could be used to evaluate young adults with known or suspected language impairment. Forty adults (mean age = 22 years, 10 months) with typical language development participated in an interview that consisted of 3 speaking tasks: a general conversation about common, everyday topics; a narrative retelling task that involved fables; and a question-and-answer, critical-thinking task about the fables. Each speaker's interview was audio-recorded, transcribed, broken into communication units, coded for main and subordinate clauses, entered into Systematic Analysis of Language Transcripts (Miller, Iglesias, & Nockerts, 2004), and analyzed for mean length of communication unit and clausal density. Both the narrative and critical-thinking tasks elicited significantly greater syntactic complexity than the conversational task. It was also found that syntactic complexity was significantly greater during the narrative task than the critical-thinking task. Syntactic complexity was best revealed by a narrative task that involved fables. The study offers benchmarks for language development during early adulthood.
Remington, Robert J.
Leaders within the Information Technology (IT) industry are expressing a general concern that the products used to deliver and manage today's communications network capabilities require far too much effort to learn and to use, even by highly skilled and increasingly scarce support personnel. The usability of network management systems must be significantly improved if they are to deliver the performance and quality of service needed to meet the ever-increasing demand for new Internet-based information and services. Fortunately, recent advances in spoken language (SL) interface technologies show promise for significantly improving the usability of most interactive IT applications, including network management systems. The emerging SL interfaces will allow users to communicate with IT applications through words and phases -- our most familiar form of everyday communication. Recent advancements in SL technologies have resulted in new commercial products that are being operationally deployed at an increasing rate. The present paper describes a project aimed at the application of new SL interface technology for improving the usability of an advanced network management system. It describes several SL interface features that are being incorporated within an existing system with a modern graphical user interface (GUI), including 3-D visualization of network topology and network performance data. The rationale for using these SL interface features to augment existing user interfaces is presented, along with selected task scenarios to provide insight into how a SL interface will simplify the operator's task and enhance overall system usability.
Bedny, Marina; Richardson, Hilary; Saxe, Rebecca
Plasticity in the visual cortex of blind individuals provides a rare window into the mechanisms of cortical specialization. In the absence of visual input, occipital ("visual") brain regions respond to sound and spoken language. Here, we examined the time course and developmental mechanism of this plasticity in blind children. Nineteen blind and 40 sighted children and adolescents (4-17 years old) listened to stories and two auditory control conditions (unfamiliar foreign speech, and music). We find that "visual" cortices of young blind (but not sighted) children respond to sound. Responses to nonlanguage sounds increased between the ages of 4 and 17. By contrast, occipital responses to spoken language were maximal by age 4 and were not related to Braille learning. These findings suggest that occipital plasticity for spoken language is independent of plasticity for Braille and for sound. We conclude that in the absence of visual input, spoken language colonizes the visual system during brain development. Our findings suggest that early in life, human cortex has a remarkably broad computational capacity. The same cortical tissue can take on visual perception and language functions. Studies of plasticity provide key insights into how experience shapes the human brain. The "visual" cortex of adults who are blind from birth responds to touch, sound, and spoken language. To date, all existing studies have been conducted with adults, so little is known about the developmental trajectory of plasticity. We used fMRI to study the emergence of "visual" cortex responses to sound and spoken language in blind children and adolescents. We find that "visual" cortex responses to sound increase between 4 and 17 years of age. By contrast, responses to spoken language are present by 4 years of age and are not related to Braille-learning. These findings suggest that, early in development, human cortex can take on a strikingly wide range of functions. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/3511674-08$15.00/0.
Lestari, Dessi Puji; Furui, Sadaoki
Recognition errors of proper nouns and foreign words significantly decrease the performance of ASR-based speech applications such as voice dialing systems, speech summarization, spoken document retrieval, and spoken query-based information retrieval (IR). The reason is that proper nouns and words that come from other languages are usually the most important key words. The loss of such words due to misrecognition in turn leads to a loss of significant information from the speech source. This paper focuses on how to improve the performance of Indonesian ASR by alleviating the problem of pronunciation variation of proper nouns and foreign words (English words in particular). To improve the proper noun recognition accuracy, proper-noun specific acoustic models are created by supervised adaptation using maximum likelihood linear regression (MLLR). To improve English word recognition, the pronunciation of English words contained in the lexicon is fixed by using rule-based English-to-Indonesian phoneme mapping. The effectiveness of the proposed method was confirmed through spoken query based Indonesian IR. We used Inference Network-based (IN-based) IR and compared its results with those of the classical Vector Space Model (VSM) IR, both using a tf-idf weighting schema. Experimental results show that IN-based IR outperforms VSM IR.
This document discusses problems associated with Italian energy policy; economic and industrial development as it relates to that policy is covered. Specific areas covered are: (1) the basis of Italy's new energy policy; (2) energy demand; (3) five objectives; (4) the electrical power system; (5) proposed action; and (6) energy resources
The abstracts of most of the papers read at the 53 National Congress of the Italian Society of Physics are presented. The Congress developed in ten sessions: high energy and elementary particle physics, physics of nuclei, condensed matter, quantum electronics, cosmic physics, geophysics, general physics, electronics and applied physics, health physics and hystory of physics. An author index is also included
Le Bigot, Ludovic; Terrier, Patrice; Jamet, Eric; Botherel, Valerie; Rouet, Jean-Francois
The aim of the study was to determine the influence of textual feedback on the content and outcome of spoken interaction with a natural language dialogue system. More specifically, the assumption that textual feedback could disrupt spoken interaction was tested in a human-computer dialogue situation. In total, 48 adult participants, familiar with the system, had to find restaurants based on simple or difficult scenarios using a real natural language service system in a speech-only (phone), speech plus textual dialogue history (multimodal) or text-only (web) modality. The linguistic contents of the dialogues differed as a function of modality, but were similar whether the textual feedback was included in the spoken condition or not. These results add to burgeoning research efforts on multimodal feedback, in suggesting that textual feedback may have little or no detrimental effect on information searching with a real system. STATEMENT OF RELEVANCE: The results suggest that adding textual feedback to interfaces for human-computer dialogue could enhance spoken interaction rather than create interference. The literature currently suggests that adding textual feedback to tasks that depend on the visual sense benefits human-computer interaction. The addition of textual output when the spoken modality is heavily taxed by the task was investigated.
Carson, J; Walker, L A; Sanders, B J; Jones, J E; Weddell, J A; Tomlin, A M
The purpose of this study was to assess dmft, the number of decayed, missing (due to caries), and/ or filled primary teeth, of English-speaking and non-English speaking patients of a hospital based pediatric dental clinic under the age of 72 months to determine if native language is a risk marker for tooth decay. Records from an outpatient dental clinic which met the inclusion criteria were reviewed. Patient demographics and dmft score were recorded, and the patients were separated into three groups by the native language spoken by their parents: English, Spanish and all other languages. A total of 419 charts were assessed: 253 English-speaking, 126 Spanish-speaking, and 40 other native languages. After accounting for patient characteristics, dmft was significantly higher for the other language group than for the English-speaking (p0.05). Those patients under 72 months of age whose parents' native language is not English or Spanish, have the highest risk for increased dmft when compared to English and Spanish speaking patients. Providers should consider taking additional time to educate patients and their parents, in their native language, on the importance of routine dental care and oral hygiene.
Kemmerer, David; Tranel, Daniel; Manzel, Ken
We describe a brain-damaged subject, RR, who manifests superior written over spoken naming of concrete entities from a wide range of conceptual domains. His spoken naming difficulties are due primarily to an impairment of lexical-phonological processing, which implies that his successful written naming does not depend on prior access to the sound structures of words. His performance therefore provides further support for the "orthographic autonomy hypothesis," which maintains that written word production is not obligatorily mediated by phonological knowledge. The case of RR is especially interesting, however, because for him the dissociation between impaired spoken naming and relatively preserved written naming is significantly greater for two categories of unique concrete entities that are lexicalised as proper nouns-specifically, famous faces and famous landmarks-than for five categories of nonunique (i.e., basic level) concrete entities that are lexicalised as common nouns-specifically, animals, fruits/vegetables, tools/utensils, musical instruments, and vehicles. Furthermore, RR's predominant error types in the oral modality are different for the two types of stimuli: omissions for unique entities vs. semantic errors for nonunique entities. We consider two alternative explanations for RR's extreme difficulty in producing the spoken forms of proper nouns: (1) a disconnection between the meanings of proper nouns and the corresponding word nodes in the phonological output lexicon; or (2) damage to the word nodes themselves. We argue that RR's combined behavioural and lesion data do not clearly adjudicate between the two explanations, but that they favour the first explanation over the second.
Italy's electricity system was described. Italy relies on outside sources for between 10 and 15 per cent of its electricity supply. Most Italians use gas, wood stoves and fossil fuels, and are conservative about lighting. Electricity costs more in Italy than in any other European country. Italy made the decision to decommission its nuclear power stations after Chernobyl. In 2005, Italy's largest utility group signed a memorandum of understanding ensuring that they would contract energy from France's nuclear reactors. Italy is now financing and managing projects in Russia and eastern Europe, and has strengthened its ties in Spain and the Netherlands. Although Italy is intent on producing its own power, the perceptions of health hazards from electricity towers cause citizens to strongly protest new installations. It was concluded that rising energy prices may force Italians to reconsider the use of alternative energy sources. 3 figs
Bonin, Patrick; Chalard, Marylène; Méot, Alain; Fayol, Michel
The influence of nine variables on the latencies to write down or to speak aloud the names of pictures taken from Snodgrass and Vanderwart (1980) was investigated in French adults. The major determinants of both written and spoken picture naming latencies were image variability, image agreement and age of acquisition. To a lesser extent, name agreement was also found to have an impact in both production modes. The implications of the findings for theoretical views of both spoken and written picture naming are discussed.
McMurray, Bob; Samelson, Vicki M.; Lee, Sung Hee; Tomblin, J. Bruce
Thirty years of research has uncovered the broad principles that characterize spoken word processing across listeners. However, there have been few systematic investigations of individual differences. Such an investigation could help refine models of word recognition by indicating which processing parameters are likely to vary, and could also have…
Yip, Michael C. W.
The present study examined the role of positional probability of syllables played in recognition of spoken word in continuous Cantonese speech. Because some sounds occur more frequently at the beginning position or ending position of Cantonese syllables than the others, so these kinds of probabilistic information of syllables may cue the locations…
Adesope, Olusola O.; Nesbit, John C.
An animated concept map represents verbal information in a node-link diagram that changes over time. The goals of the experiment were to evaluate the instructional effects of presenting an animated concept map concurrently with semantically equivalent spoken narration. The study used a 2 x 2 factorial design in which an animation factor (animated…
Behrns, Ingrid; Wengelin, Asa; Broberg, Malin; Hartelius, Lena
The aim of the present study was to explore how a personal narrative told by a group of eight persons with aphasia differed between written and spoken language, and to compare this with findings from 10 participants in a reference group. The stories were analysed through holistic assessments made by 60 participants without experience of aphasia…
Full Text Available The Prosodic Parallelism hypothesis claims adjacent prosodic categories to prefer identical branching of internal adjacent constituents. According to Wiese and Speyer (2015, this preference implies feet contained in the same phonological phrase to display either binary or unary branching, but not different types of branching. The seemingly free schwa-zero alternations at the end of some words in German make it possible to test this hypothesis. The hypothesis was successfully tested by conducting a corpus study which used large-scale bodies of written German. As some open questions remain, and as it is unclear whether Prosodic Parallelism is valid for the spoken modality as well, the present study extends this inquiry to spoken German. As in the previous study, the results of a corpus analysis recruiting a variety of linguistic constructions are presented. The Prosodic Parallelism hypothesis can be demonstrated to be valid for spoken German as well as for written German. The paper thus contributes to the question whether prosodic preferences are similar between the spoken and written modes of a language. Some consequences of the results for the production of language are discussed.
assessment instrument used to assess formally the spoken-language educational interpreters at. Stellenbosch University (SU). Research ..... Is the interpreter suited to the module? Is the interpreter easier to follow? Technical. Microphone technique. Lag. Completeness. Language use. Vocabulary. Role. Personal Objectives ...
This paper presents two chatbot systems, ALICE and. Elizabeth, illustrating the dialogue knowledge representation and pattern matching techniques of each. We discuss the problems which arise when using the. Corpus of Spoken Afrikaans (Korpus Gesproke Afrikaans) to retrain the ALICE chatbot system with human ...
Therefore, this paper examined vowel insertion in the spoken French of 50 Ijebu Undergraduate French Learners (IUFLs) in Selected Universities in South West of Nigeria. The data collection for this study was through tape-recording of participants' production of 30 sentences containing both French vowel and consonant ...
Krahmer, E.; Swerts, M.; Theune, Mariet; Weegels, M.
Given the state of the art of current language and speech technology, errors are unavoidable in present-day spoken dialogue systems. Therefore, one of the main concerns in dialogue design is how to decide whether or not the system has understood the user correctly. In human-human communication,
The Black Arts Movement of the 1960s and 1970s, hip hop of the 1980s and early 1990s, and spoken word poetry have each attempted to initiate the dialogical process outlined by Paulo Freire as necessary in overturning oppression. Each art form has done this by critically engaging with the world and questioning dominant systems of power. However,…
Kobayashi, Yuichiro; Abe, Mariko
The purpose of the present study is to assess second language (L2) spoken English using automated scoring techniques. Automated scoring aims to classify a large set of learners' oral performance data into a small number of discrete oral proficiency levels. In automated scoring, objectively measurable features such as the frequencies of lexical and…
ter Maat, Mark; Heylen, Dirk K.J.; Vilhjálmsson, Hannes; Kopp, Stefan; Marsella, Stacy; Thórisson, Kristinn
This paper introduces Flipper, an specification language and interpreter for Information State Update rules that can be used for developing spoken dialogue systems and embodied conversational agents. The system uses XML-templates to modify the information state and to select behaviours to perform.
English language learners are often more grammatically accurate in writing than in speaking. As students focus on meaning while speaking, their spoken fluency comes at a cost: their grammatical accuracy decreases. The author wanted to find a way to help her students improve their oral grammar; that is, she wanted them to focus on grammar while…
Canisius, S.V.M.; van den Bosch, A.; Decadt, B.; Hoste, V.; De Pauw, G.
We describe the development of a Dutch memory-based shallow parser. The availability of large treebanks for Dutch, such as the one provided by the Spoken Dutch Corpus, allows memory-based learners to be trained on examples of shallow parsing taken from the treebank, and act as a shallow parser after
In spite of the vast numbers of articles devoted to vocabulary acquisition in a foreign language, few studies address the contribution of lexical knowledge to spoken fluency. The present article begins with basic definitions of the temporal characteristics of oral fluency, summarizing L1 research over several decades, and then presents fluency…
Discusses comparative analysis of spoken and written versions of a narrative to demonstrate that features which have been identified as characterizing oral discourse are also found in written discourse and that the written short story combines syntactic complexity expected in writing with features which create involvement expected in speaking.…
Full Text Available the carefully selected training data used to construct the system initially. The authors investigated the process of porting a Spoken Language Identification (S-LID) system to a new environment and describe methods to prepare it for more effective use...
van der Werff, Laurens Bastiaan
This thesis introduces a novel framework for the evaluation of Automatic Speech Recognition (ASR) transcripts in an Spoken Document Retrieval (SDR) context. The basic premise is that ASR transcripts must be evaluated by measuring the impact of noise in the transcripts on the search results of a
This paper sets out to examine the phonological interference in the spoken English performance of the Izon speaker. It emphasizes that the level of interference is not just as a result of the systemic differences that exist between both language systems (Izon and English) but also as a result of the interlanguage factors such ...
This thesis addressed the spoken production of complex numerals for time and space. The production of complex numerical expressions like those involved in telling time (e.g., 'quarter to four') or producing house numbers (e.g., 'two hundred forty-five') has been almost completely ignored. Yet, adult
Tabossi, Patrizia; Fanari, Rachele; Wolf, Kinou
This study investigates recognition of spoken idioms occurring in neutral contexts. Experiment 1 showed that both predictable and non-predictable idiom meanings are available at string offset. Yet, only predictable idiom meanings are active halfway through a string and remain active after the string's literal conclusion. Experiment 2 showed that…
Revill, Kathleen Pirog; Tanenhaus, Michael K.; Aslin, Richard N.
Reports an error in "Context and spoken word recognition in a novel lexicon" by Kathleen Pirog Revill, Michael K. Tanenhaus and Richard N. Aslin ("Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition," 2008[Sep], Vol 34, 1207-1223). Figure 9 was inadvertently duplicated as Figure 10. Figure 9 in the original article was correct.…
Corpus-based grammars, notably "Cambridge Grammar of English," give explicit information on the forms and use of native-speaker grammar, including spoken grammar. Native-speaker norms as a necessary goal in language teaching are contested by supporters of English as a Lingua Franca (ELF); however, this article argues for the inclusion of selected…
de Jong, Franciska M.G.; Heeren, W.F.L.; van Hessen, Adrianus J.; Ordelman, Roeland J.F.; Nijholt, Antinus; Ruiz Miyares, L.; Alvarez Silva, M.R.
Archival practice is shifting from the analogue to the digital world. A specific subset of heritage collections that impose interesting challenges for the field of language and speech technology are spoken word archives. Given the enormous backlog at audiovisual archives of unannotated materials and
Weber, A.C.; Cutler, A.
Six eye-tracking experiments examined lexical competition in non-native spoken-word recognition. Dutch listeners hearing English fixated longer on distractor pictures with names containing vowels that Dutch listeners are likely to confuse with vowels in a target picture name (pencil, given target
This article examines the impact of the hegemony of English, as a common lingua franca, referred to as a global language, on the indigenous languages spoken in Nigeria. Since English, through the British political imperialism and because of the economic supremacy of English dominated countries, has assumed the ...
Apr 12, 2018 ... sound of that language. These language-specific properties can be exploited to identify a spoken language reliably. Automatic language identification has emerged as a prominent research area in. Indian languages processing. People from different regions of India speak around 800 different languages.
Moran, Catherine; Kirk, Cecilia; Powell, Emma
Purpose: The aim of this study was to examine the performance of adolescents with acquired brain injury (ABI) during a spoken persuasive discourse task. Persuasive discourse is frequently used in social and academic settings and is of importance in the study of adolescent language. Method: Participants included 8 adolescents with ABI and 8 peers…
Grant, Lynn E.
This article outlines criteria to define a figurative idiom, and then compares the frequent figurative idioms identified in two sources of spoken American English (academic and contemporary) to their frequency in spoken British English. This is done by searching the spoken part of the British National Corpus (BNC), to see whether they are frequent…
Tao, Hongyin; McCarthy, Michael J.
Reexamines the notion of non-restrictive relative clauses (NRRCs) in light of spoken corpus evidence, based on analysis of 692 occurrences of non-restrictive "which"-clauses in British and American spoken English data. Reviews traditional conceptions of NRRCs and recent work on the broader notion of subordination in spoken grammar.…
Ihle, Andreas; Oris, Michel; Fagot, Delphine; Kliegel, Matthias
Findings on the association of speaking different languages with cognitive functioning in old age are inconsistent and inconclusive so far. Therefore, the present study set out to investigate the relation of the number of languages spoken to cognitive performance and its interplay with several other markers of cognitive reserve in a large sample of older adults. Two thousand eight hundred and twelve older adults served as sample for the present study. Psychometric tests on verbal abilities, basic processing speed, and cognitive flexibility were administered. In addition, individuals were interviewed on their different languages spoken on a regular basis, educational attainment, occupation, and engaging in different activities throughout adulthood. Higher number of languages regularly spoken was significantly associated with better performance in verbal abilities and processing speed, but unrelated to cognitive flexibility. Regression analyses showed that the number of languages spoken predicted cognitive performance over and above leisure activities/physical demand of job/gainful activity as respective additional predictor, but not over and above educational attainment/cognitive level of job as respective additional predictor. There was no significant moderation of the association of the number of languages spoken with cognitive performance in any model. Present data suggest that speaking different languages on a regular basis may additionally contribute to the build-up of cognitive reserve in old age. Yet, this may not be universal, but linked to verbal abilities and basic cognitive processing speed. Moreover, it may be dependent on other types of cognitive stimulation that individuals also engaged in during their life course.
Kowal, Sabine; O'Connell, Daniel C
The following article presents basic concepts and methods of Ragnar Rommetveit's (born 1924) hermeneutic-dialogical approach to everyday spoken dialogue with a focus on both shared consciousness and linguistically mediated meaning. He developed this approach originally in his engagement of mainstream linguistic and psycholinguistic research of the 1960s and 1970s. He criticized this research tradition for its individualistic orientation and its adherence to experimental methodology which did not allow the engagement of interactively established meaning and understanding in everyday spoken dialogue. As a social psychologist influenced by phenomenological philosophy, Rommetveit opted for an alternative conceptualization of such dialogue as a contextualized, partially private world, temporarily co-established by interlocutors on the basis of shared consciousness. He argued that everyday spoken dialogue should be investigated from within, i.e., from the perspectives of the interlocutors and from a psychology of the second person. Hence, he developed his approach with an emphasis on intersubjectivity, perspectivity and perspectival relativity, meaning potential of utterances, and epistemic responsibility of interlocutors. In his methods, he limited himself for the most part to casuistic analyses, i.e., logical analyses of fictitious examples to argue for the plausibility of his approach. After many years of experimental research on language, he pursued his phenomenologically oriented research on dialogue in English-language publications from the late 1980s up to 2003. During that period, he engaged psycholinguistic research on spoken dialogue carried out by Anglo-American colleagues only occasionally. Although his work remained unfinished and open to development, it provides both a challenging alternative and supplement to current Anglo-American research on spoken dialogue and some overlap therewith.
"CERN stands as the demonstration of the great results that science can achieve [...] when it succeeds in getting all the main players in international scientific cooperation involved," stated the President of the Italian Republic, Carlo Azeglio Ciampi, in front of an overcrowded and enthusiastic Main Auditorium. The President visited CERN on 2nd December, and met the CERN directorate as well as the Italians at CERN. With about 1500 Italians working at CERN, which is one sixth of the total personnel, they are the second largest nationality at CERN. The Italian President visited the CMS assembly hall and the LHC superconducting magnet test hall before meeting the CERN community, in particular Italian personnel, in the main auditorium. There he emphasised the role of CERN as a transnational model for research which not only achieved great results in science but is also a powerful vehicle for progress in other fields. President Ciampi visits the LHC superconducting test hall together with Luciano Maiani and Lu...
Jessica Ann Obermeyer
Methods: Ten native English speaking healthy elderly participants between the ages of 50 and 80 were recruited. Exclusionary criteria included neurological disease/injury, history of learning disability, uncorrected hearing or vision impairment, history of drug/alcohol abuse and presence of cognitive decline (based on Cognitive Linguistic Quick Test. Spoken and written discourse was analyzed for micro linguistic measures including total words, percent correct information units (CIUs; Nicholas & Brookshire, 1993 and percent complete utterances (CUs; Edmonds, et al. 2009. CIUs measure relevant and informative words while CUs focus at the sentence level and measure whether a relevant subject and verb and object (if appropriate are present. Results: Analysis was completed using Wilcoxon Rank Sum Test due to small sample size. Preliminary results revealed that healthy elderly people produced significantly more words in spoken retellings than written retellings (p=.000; however, this measure contrasted with %CIUs and %CUs with participants producing significantly higher %CIUs (p=.000 and %CUs (p=.000 in written story retellings than in spoken story retellings. Conclusion: These findings indicate that written retellings, while shorter, contained higher accuracy at both a word (CIU and sentence (CU level. This observation could be related to the ability to revise written text and therefore make it more concise, whereas the nature of speech results in more embellishment and “thinking out loud,” such as comments about the task, associated observations about the story, etc. We plan to run more participants and conduct a main concepts analysis (before conference time to gain more insight into modality differences and implications.
Agnoli, Claudia; Grioni, Sara; Sieri, Sabina; Palli, Domenico; Masala, Giovanna; Sacerdote, Carlotta; Vineis, Paolo; Tumino, Rosario; Giurdanella, Maria Concetta; Pala, Valeria; Berrino, Franco; Mattiello, Amalia; Panico, Salvatore; Krogh, Vittorio
Colorectal cancer is among the commonest cancers worldwide. Dietary factors have been linked to colorectal cancer risk, however, few studies have evaluated the relationship between a priori dietary patterns and colorectal cancer risk. We evaluated the effect of adherence to a Mediterranean dietary pattern, as measured by the Italian Mediterranean Index, on the risk of colorectal cancer in the 45,275 participants of the Italian section of the EPIC study who completed a dietary questionnaire. Hazard ratios (HRs) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs) for colorectal cancer in relation to categories of Italian Mediterranean Index score were estimated by multivariate Cox models adjusted for known risk factors, on the whole cohort, on men and women and according to cancer subsite. During a mean follow-up of 11.28 years, 435 colorectal cancer cases were identified. The Italian Mediterranean Index was inversely associated with colorectal cancer risk (HR: 0.50; 95% CI: 0.35-0.71 for the highest category compared to the lowest, P-trend: 0.043). Results did not differ by sex. Highest Italian Mediterranean Index score was also significantly associated with reduced risks of any colon cancer (HR: 0.54, 95% CI: 0.36-0.81), distal colon cancer (HR: 0.44, 95% CI: 0.26-0.75) and rectal cancer (HR: 0.41, 95% CI: 0.20-0.81), but not of proximal colon cancer. These findings suggest that adherence to a Mediterranean diet (as measured by the Italian Mediterranean Index) protects against colorectal cancer in general but not against cancer developing in the proximal colon. Copyright © 2012 UICC.
Full Text Available This paper addresses the problem of spoken document retrieval under noisy conditions by incorporating sound selection of a basic unit and an output form of a speech recognition system. Syllable fragment is combined with a confusion network in a spoken document retrieval task. After selecting an appropriate syllable fragment, a lattice is converted into a confusion network that is able to minimize the word error rate instead of maximizing the whole sentence recognition rate. A vector space model is adopted in the retrieval task where tf-idf weights are derived from the posterior probability. The confusion network with syllable fragments is able to improve the mean of average precision (MAP score by 0.342 and 0.066 over one-best scheme and the lattice.
Roxbury, Tracy; McMahon, Katie; Copland, David A
Evidence for the brain mechanisms recruited when processing concrete versus abstract concepts has been largely derived from studies employing visual stimuli. The tasks and baseline contrasts used have also involved varying degrees of lexical processing. This study investigated the neural basis of the concreteness effect during spoken word recognition and employed a lexical decision task with a novel pseudoword condition. The participants were seventeen healthy young adults (9 females). The stimuli consisted of (a) concrete, high imageability nouns, (b) abstract, low imageability nouns and (c) opaque legal pseudowords presented in a pseudorandomised, event-related design. Activation for the concrete, abstract and pseudoword conditions was analysed using anatomical regions of interest derived from previous findings of concrete and abstract word processing. Behaviourally, lexical decision reaction times for the concrete condition were significantly faster than both abstract and pseudoword conditions and the abstract condition was significantly faster than the pseudoword condition (p word recognition. Significant activity was also elicited by concrete words relative to pseudowords in the left fusiform and left anterior middle temporal gyrus. These findings confirm the involvement of a widely distributed network of brain regions that are activated in response to the spoken recognition of concrete but not abstract words. Our findings are consistent with the proposal that distinct brain regions are engaged as convergence zones and enable the binding of supramodal input.
Mast, Marion; Maier, Elisabeth; Schmitz, Birte
This report describes how spoken language turns are segmented into utterances in the framework of the verbmobil project. The problem of segmenting turns is directly related to the task of annotating a discourse with dialogue act information: an utterance can be characterized as a stretch of dialogue that is attributed one dialogue act. Unfortunately, this rule in many cases is insufficient and many doubtful cases remain. We tried to at least reduce the number of unclear cases by providing a n...
Boccali, T.; Donvito, G.; Diacono, D.; Marzulli, G.; Pompili, A.; Della Ricca, G.; Mazzoni, E.; Argiro, S.; Gregori, D.; Grandi, C.; Bonacorsi, D.; Lista, L.; Fabozzi, F.; Barone, L. M.; Santocchia, A.; Riahi, H.; Tricomi, A.; Sgaravatto, M.; Maron, G.
The Italian community in CMS has built a geographically distributed network in which all the data stored in the Italian region are available to all the users for their everyday work. This activity involves at different level all the CMS centers: the Tier1 at CNAF, all the four Tier2s (Bari, Rome, Legnaro and Pisa), and few Tier3s (Trieste, Perugia, Torino, Catania, Napoli, ...). The federation uses the new network connections as provided by GARR, our NREN (National Research and Education Network), which provides a minimum of 10 Gbit/s to all the sites via the GARR-X project. The federation is currently based on Xrootd technology, and on a Redirector aimed to seamlessly connect all the sites, giving the logical view of a single entity. A special configuration has been put in place for the Tier1, CNAF, where ad-hoc Xrootd changes have been implemented in order to protect the tape system from excessive stress, by not allowing WAN connections to access tape only files, on a file-by-file basis. In order to improve the overall performance while reading files, both in terms of bandwidth and latency, a hierarchy of xrootd redirectors has been implemented. The solution implemented provides a dedicated Redirector where all the INFN sites are registered, without considering their status (T1, T2, or T3 sites). An interesting use case were able to cover via the federation are disk-less Tier3s. The caching solution allows to operate a local storage with minimal human intervention: transfers are automatically done on a single file basis, and the cache is maintained operational by automatic removal of old files.
Oviatt, S; Bernard, J; Levow, G A
Fragile error handling in recognition-based systems is a major problem that degrades their performance, frustrates users, and limits commercial potential. The aim of the present research was to analyze the types and magnitude of linguistic adaptation that occur during spoken and multimodal human-computer error resolution. A semiautomatic simulation method with a novel error-generation capability was used to collect samples of users' spoken and pen-based input immediately before and after recognition errors, and at different spiral depths in terms of the number of repetitions needed to resolve an error. When correcting persistent recognition errors, results revealed that users adapt their speech and language in three qualitatively different ways. First, they increase linguistic contrast through alternation of input modes and lexical content over repeated correction attempts. Second, when correcting with verbatim speech, they increase hyperarticulation by lengthening speech segments and pauses, and increasing the use of final falling contours. Third, when they hyperarticulate, users simultaneously suppress linguistic variability in their speech signal's amplitude and fundamental frequency. These findings are discussed from the perspective of enhancement of linguistic intelligibility. Implications are also discussed for corroboration and generalization of the Computer-elicited Hyperarticulate Adaptation Model (CHAM), and for improved error handling capabilities in next-generation spoken language and multimodal systems.
Full Text Available Prior research has demonstrated that listeners are sensitive to changes in the indexical (talker-specific characteristics of speech input, suggesting that these signal-intrinsic features are integrally encoded in memory for spoken words. Given that listeners frequently must contend with concurrent environmental noise, to what extent do they also encode signal-extrinsic details? Native English listeners’ explicit memory for spoken English monosyllabic and disyllabic words was assessed as a function of consistency versus variation in the talker’s voice (talker condition and background noise (noise condition using a delayed recognition memory paradigm. The speech and noise signals were spectrally-separated, such that changes in a simultaneously presented non-speech signal (background noise from exposure to test would not be accompanied by concomitant changes in the target speech signal. The results revealed that listeners can encode both signal-intrinsic talker and signal-extrinsic noise information into integrated cognitive representations, critically even when the two auditory streams are spectrally non-overlapping. However, the extent to which extra-linguistic episodic information is encoded alongside linguistic information appears to be modulated by syllabic characteristics, with specificity effects found only for monosyllabic items. These findings suggest that encoding and retrieval of episodic information during spoken word processing may be modulated by lexical characteristics.
Parisse, C; Le Normand, M T
The use of computer tools has led to major advances in the study of spoken language corpora. One area that has shown particular progress is the study of child language development. Although it is now easy to lexically tag every word in a spoken language corpus, one still has to choose between numerous ambiguous forms, especially with languages such as French or English, where more than 70% of words are ambiguous. Computational linguistics can now provide a fully automatic disambiguation of lexical tags. The tool presented here (POST) can tag and disambiguate a large text in a few seconds. This tool complements systems dealing with language transcription and suggests further theoretical developments in the assessment of the status of morphosyntax in spoken language corpora. The program currently works for French and English, but it can be easily adapted for use with other languages. The analysis and computation of a corpus produced by normal French children 2-4 years of age, as well as of a sample corpus produced by French SLI children, are given as examples.
Using a sample of Italian firms, I nvestigate the value-relevance of separate financial statements as well as the effects of adopting IFRS. I find that separate financial statements provide investors with useful information, regardless of the accounting standard set used for their preparation. I also document significant differences in value‐relevance between Italian GAAP and IFRS, with IFRS being more informative than Italian GAAP. However,while results are robust for book value, they provid...
Hirschmüller, Sarah; Egloff, Boris
How do individuals emotionally cope with the imminent real-world salience of mortality? DeWall and Baumeister as well as Kashdan and colleagues previously provided support that an increased use of positive emotion words serves as a way to protect and defend against mortality salience of one's own contemplated death. Although these studies provide important insights into the psychological dynamics of mortality salience, it remains an open question how individuals cope with the immense threat of mortality prior to their imminent actual death. In the present research, we therefore analyzed positivity in the final words spoken immediately before execution by 407 death row inmates in Texas. By using computerized quantitative text analysis as an objective measure of emotional language use, our results showed that the final words contained a significantly higher proportion of positive than negative emotion words. This emotional positivity was significantly higher than (a) positive emotion word usage base rates in spoken and written materials and (b) positive emotional language use with regard to contemplated death and attempted or actual suicide. Additional analyses showed that emotional positivity in final statements was associated with a greater frequency of language use that was indicative of self-references, social orientation, and present-oriented time focus as well as with fewer instances of cognitive-processing, past-oriented, and death-related word use. Taken together, our findings offer new insights into how individuals cope with the imminent real-world salience of mortality.
Full Text Available How do individuals emotionally cope with the imminent real-world salience of mortality? DeWall and Baumeister as well as Kashdan and colleagues previously provided support that an increased use of positive emotion words serves as a way to protect and defend against mortality salience of one’s own contemplated death. Although these studies provide important insights into the psychological dynamics of mortality salience, it remains an open question how individuals cope with the immense threat of mortality prior to their imminent actual death. In the present research, we therefore analyzed positivity in the final words spoken immediately before execution by 407 death row inmates in Texas. By using computerized quantitative text analysis as an objective measure of emotional language use, our results showed that the final words contained a significantly higher proportion of positive than negative emotion words. This emotional positivity was significantly higher than (a positive emotion word usage base rates in spoken and written materials and (b positive emotional language use with regard to contemplated death and attempted or actual suicide. Additional analyses showed that emotional positivity in final statements was associated with a greater frequency of language use that was indicative of self-references, social orientation, and present-oriented time focus as well as with fewer instances of cognitive-processing, past-oriented, and death-related word use. Taken together, our findings offer new insights into how individuals cope with the imminent real-world salience of mortality.
Full Text Available Carsharing (CS is increasing its role worldwide as an alternative transport mode, often more sustainable than private transport with self-owned vehicles. We first focus on the main characteristics of those services and on the impacts they generated, starting from the analysis of the literature on this topic. CS initiatives are growing everywhere, however numbers are still minor and impacts are still far from a level that can deliver significant aggregate benefits. This paper studies the existing Italian carsharing experiences, trying to understand its strengths, that have allowed its development, but also possible limits and weaknesses. The presence of a national coordination structure (Iniziativa Carsharing - ICS, unique in Europe and created to boost local initiatives providing standardisation and interoperability, surely helped the development of the system. Some initiatives have been successful in terms of membership (in particular Milan, Venice and Turin, but others have been discontinued. Italian users’ characteristics are similar to the ones of users abroad: the majority of users are well educated male, living in small households having one or no cars and using public transport every day. At present, Italian drivers generally still show a scarce propensity to share their cars, considered more as “goods” than as “services”. A case study in Milan, the first and most successful initiative in Italy, shows a significant increase in CS membership after the implementation of a city charging scheme (“Ecopass” at first, then “Area C”. Moving shared cars from garages to “on the street parking” has proved successful too. The usage of the service has changed in time: users have increased (+151% more than runs (+137% – 2006 to 2009, while average length and duration of each run have decreased (-30% and -43% respectively, 2006 to 2010. Milan’s initiative also put s into practice many incentives for users that likely
Davidson, Kathryn; Lillo-Martin, Diane; Chen Pichler, Deborah
Bilingualism is common throughout the world, and bilingual children regularly develop into fluently bilingual adults. In contrast, children with cochlear implants (CIs) are frequently encouraged to focus on a spoken language to the exclusion of sign language. Here, we investigate the spoken English language skills of 5 children with CIs who also have deaf signing parents, and so receive exposure to a full natural sign language (American Sign Language, ASL) from birth, in addition to spoken En...
Boulet, J R; van Zanten, M; McKinley, D W; Gary, N E
The purpose of this study was to gather additional evidence for the validity and reliability of spoken English proficiency ratings provided by trained standardized patients (SPs) in high-stakes clinical skills examination. Over 2500 candidates who took the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates' (ECFMG) Clinical Skills Assessment (CSA) were studied. The CSA consists of 10 or 11 timed clinical encounters. Standardized patients evaluate spoken English proficiency and interpersonal skills in every encounter. Generalizability theory was used to estimate the consistency of spoken English ratings. Validity coefficients were calculated by correlating summary English ratings with CSA scores and other external criterion measures. Mean spoken English ratings were also compared by various candidate background variables. The reliability of the spoken English ratings, based on 10 independent evaluations, was high. The magnitudes of the associated variance components indicated that the evaluation of a candidate's spoken English proficiency is unlikely to be affected by the choice of cases or SPs used in a given assessment. Proficiency in spoken English was related to native language (English versus other) and scores from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). The pattern of the relationships, both within assessment components and with external criterion measures, suggests that valid measures of spoken English proficiency are obtained. This result, combined with the high reproducibility of the ratings over encounters and SPs, supports the use of trained SPs to measure spoken English skills in a simulated medical environment.
Spoken language understanding (SLU) is an emerging field in between speech and language processing, investigating human/ machine and human/ human communication by leveraging technologies from signal processing, pattern recognition, machine learning and artificial intelligence. SLU systems are designed to extract the meaning from speech utterances and its applications are vast, from voice search in mobile devices to meeting summarization, attracting interest from both commercial and academic sectors. Both human/machine and human/human communications can benefit from the application of SLU, usin
Full Text Available rates when no Japanese acoustic models are constructed. An increasing amount of Japanese training data is used to train the language classifier of an English-only (E), an English-French (EF), and an English-French-Portuguese PPR system. ple.... Experimental design 3.1. Corpora Because of their role as world languages that are widely spoken in Africa, our initial LID system was designed to distinguish between English, French and Portuguese. We therefore trained phone recognizers and language...
Brennan-Jones, Christopher G; White, Jo; Rush, Robert W; Law, James
Congenital or early-acquired hearing impairment poses a major barrier to the development of spoken language and communication. Early detection and effective (re)habilitative interventions are essential for parents and families who wish their children to achieve age-appropriate spoken language. Auditory-verbal therapy (AVT) is a (re)habilitative approach aimed at children with hearing impairments. AVT comprises intensive early intervention therapy sessions with a focus on audition, technological management and involvement of the child's caregivers in therapy sessions; it is typically the only therapy approach used to specifically promote avoidance or exclusion of non-auditory facial communication. The primary goal of AVT is to achieve age-appropriate spoken language and for this to be used as the primary or sole method of communication. AVT programmes are expanding throughout the world; however, little evidence can be found on the effectiveness of the intervention. To assess the effectiveness of auditory-verbal therapy (AVT) in developing receptive and expressive spoken language in children who are hearing impaired. CENTRAL, MEDLINE, EMBASE, PsycINFO, CINAHL, speechBITE and eight other databases were searched in March 2013. We also searched two trials registers and three theses repositories, checked reference lists and contacted study authors to identify additional studies. The review considered prospective randomised controlled trials (RCTs) and quasi-randomised studies of children (birth to 18 years) with a significant (≥ 40 dBHL) permanent (congenital or early-acquired) hearing impairment, undergoing a programme of auditory-verbal therapy, administered by a certified auditory-verbal therapist for a period of at least six months. Comparison groups considered for inclusion were waiting list and treatment as usual controls. Two review authors independently assessed titles and abstracts identified from the searches and obtained full-text versions of all potentially
Full Text Available Gambling is an ancient human activity with a prevalent position nowadays both as a social entertainment activity and as a way to gain money effortless. Every country has its specific pattern in gambling determined both by its cultural and macroeconomic determinants and by its national regulatory framework. Macroeconomic variables as gross national income per capita, annual variation of GDP or unemployment were previously proved to be connected with the gambling industry. The aim of this paper is to analyze the effects generated by the internal and external loss of confidence in the Italian economy, as an effect of the latest financial crisis, over the Italian gambling industry. The level of spread between the 10 years yield of Italian and German government bonds is used as a proxy for the international trust in the Italian economy and the Economic Sentiment Indicator is used to describe the Italian citizens' confidence. The main results show a strong positive, statistically significant correlation between skill games and spread and an unexpected negative significant correlations between spread and lottery, one of the purely fortune games that was often seen as an ultimate chance to survive the crisis. The Economic Sentiment Indicator seems not to be correlated with any of the gambling categories.
González-Alvarez, Julio; Palomar-García, María-Angeles
Research has shown that syllables play a relevant role in lexical access in Spanish, a shallow language with a transparent syllabic structure. Syllable frequency has been shown to have an inhibitory effect on visual word recognition in Spanish. However, no study has examined the syllable frequency effect on spoken word recognition. The present study tested the effect of the frequency of the first syllable on recognition of spoken Spanish words. A sample of 45 young adults (33 women, 12 men; M = 20.4, SD = 2.8; college students) performed an auditory lexical decision on 128 Spanish disyllabic words and 128 disyllabic nonwords. Words were selected so that lexical and first syllable frequency were manipulated in a within-subject 2 × 2 design, and six additional independent variables were controlled: token positional frequency of the second syllable, number of phonemes, position of lexical stress, number of phonological neighbors, number of phonological neighbors that have higher frequencies than the word, and acoustical durations measured in milliseconds. Decision latencies and error rates were submitted to linear mixed models analysis. Results showed a typical facilitatory effect of the lexical frequency and, importantly, an inhibitory effect of the first syllable frequency on reaction times and error rates. © The Author(s) 2016.
Full Text Available This paper explores the auditory lexical access of mono-morphemic compounds in Chinese as a way of understanding the role of orthography in the recognition of spoken words. In traditional Chinese linguistics, a compound is a word written with two or more characters whether or not they are morphemic. A monomorphemic compound may either be a binding word, written with characters that only appear in this one word, or a non-binding word, written with characters that are chosen for their pronunciation but that also appear in other words. Our goal was to determine if this purely orthographic difference affects auditory lexical access by conducting a series of four experiments with materials matched by whole-word frequency, syllable frequency, cross-syllable predictability, cohort size, and acoustic duration, but differing in binding. An auditory lexical decision task (LDT found an orthographic effect: binding words were recognized more quickly than non-binding words. However, this effect disappeared in an auditory repetition and in a visual LDT with the same materials, implying that the orthographic effect during auditory lexical access was localized to the decision component and involved the influence of cross-character predictability without the activation of orthographic representations. This claim was further confirmed by overall faster recognition of spoken binding words in a cross-modal LDT with different types of visual interference. The theoretical and practical consequences of these findings are discussed.
Navarini, Claudia; Poltronieri, Elisabetta
The article aims at illustrating the characteristics and functions of a monolingual thesaurus, focusing on the Italian Thesaurus of Bioethics (Thesaurus Italiano di Bioetica, TIB) the controlled vocabulary used to index and retrieve documents within SIBIL (Italian Online Bioethics Information System). TIB includes controlled terms (descriptors) translated from the Bioethics Thesaurus adopted by the Kennedy Institute of Ethics of the Georgetown University of Washington and revised according to the Italian context of study and scientific debate in the field of bioethics. The overall amount of TIB terms consists in over 1600 headings. Methods to link thesaurus terms hierarchically, by association and by showing synonyms as recommended in ISO standards are applied with reference to descriptors drawn from TIB. Future plans to make the English version of TIB available online within European networks are also illustrated, aiming at spreading information relating to bioethics at an international level.
Di Paola, Pietro
This thesis is a study of the colony of Italian anarchists who found refuge in London in the years between the Paris Commune and the outbreak of the First World War. The first chapter is an introduction to the sources and to the main problems analysed. The second chapter reconstructs the settlement of the Italian anarchists in London and their relationship with the colony of Italian emigrants. Chapter three deals with the activities that the Italian anarchists organised in London, such as dem...
Михайленко, Валерий Иванович
The article addresses debates within the historiography of Italian Fascism that were engendered by R. De Felice’s works. R. De Felice argued that the Fascists’ rise to power was largely due to accelerated modernization of Italian society after the First World War. The author focuses on the following issues debated in historiography: the intellectuals’ impact on politics; definitions of Fascism; the Fascist regime’s «betrayal» of the Fascist movement’s ideals; the role of violence and the “co...
Jesse, Alexandra; Poellmann, Katja; Kong, Ying-Yee
Purpose: We used an eye-tracking technique to investigate whether English listeners use suprasegmental information about lexical stress to speed up the recognition of spoken words in English. Method: In a visual world paradigm, 24 young English listeners followed spoken instructions to choose 1 of 4 printed referents on a computer screen (e.g.,…
Grant, Lynn E.
This study investigates the frequency and functions of "just" in British academic spoken English. It adopts the meanings of "just" established by Lindemann and Mauranen, 2001, taken from the occurrences of "just" across five speech events in the Michigan Corpus of Academic Spoken English (MICASE) to see if they also apply to occurrences of "just"…
Office of English Language Acquisition, US Department of Education, 2015
The Office of English Language Acquisition (OELA) has synthesized key data on English learners (ELs) into two-page PDF sheets, by topic, with graphics, plus key contacts. The topics for this report on Asian/Pacific Islander languages spoken by English Learners (ELs) include: (1) Top 10 Most Common Asian/Pacific Islander Languages Spoken Among ELs:…
Spoken word poetry is a means of engaging young people with a genre that has often been much maligned in classrooms all over the world. This interview with the Australian spoken word poet Luka Lesson explores issues that are of pressing concern to poetry education. These include the idea that engagement with poetry in schools can be enhanced by…
Bradham, Tamala S.; Fonnesbeck, Christopher; Toll, Alice; Hecht, Barbara F.
Purpose: The purpose of the Listening and Spoken Language Data Repository (LSL-DR) was to address a critical need for a systemwide outcome data-monitoring program for the development of listening and spoken language skills in highly specialized educational programs for children with hearing loss highlighted in Goal 3b of the 2007 Joint Committee…
Moeller, Aleidine J.; Theiler, Janine
Communicative approaches to teaching language have emphasized the centrality of oral proficiency in the language acquisition process, but research investigating oral proficiency has been surprisingly limited, yielding an incomplete understanding of spoken language development. This study investigated the development of spoken language at the high…
Roč. 68, č. 2 (2017), s. 229-237 ISSN 0021-5597 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA15-01116S Institutional support: RVO:68378092 Keywords : spoken languge * spoken corpus * tag question * responze word Subject RIV: AI - Linguistics OBOR OECD: Linguistics http://www.juls.savba.sk/ediela/jc/2017/2/jc17-02.pdf
Hoog, B.E. de; Langereis, M.C.; Weerdenburg, M. van; Keuning, J.; Knoors, H.; Verhoeven, L.
BACKGROUND: Large variability in individual spoken language outcomes remains a persistent finding in the group of children with cochlear implants (CIs), particularly in their grammatical development. AIMS: In the present study, we examined the extent of delay in lexical and morphosyntactic spoken
Hoog, B.E. de; Langereis, M.C.; Weerdenburg, M.W.C. van; Keuning, J.; Knoors, H.E.T.; Verhoeven, L.T.W.
Background: Large variability in individual spoken language outcomes remains a persistent finding in the group of children with cochlear implants (CIs), particularly in their grammatical development. Aims: In the present study, we examined the extent of delay in lexical and morphosyntactic spoken
Students' activities in the learning process are very important to indicate the quality of learning process. One of which is spoken activity. This study was intended to analyze the elementary school students' spoken activities and their responses in joining Math learning process by peer-tutoring. Descriptive qualitative design was piloted by means…
Sirc, Geoffrey; Sutton, Terri
In June 2008, the Department of English at the University of Minnesota partnered with the Minnesota Spoken Word Association to inaugurate an outreach literacy program for local high-school students and teachers. The four-day institute, named "In Da Tradition," used spoken word and hip hop to teach academic and creative writing to core-city…
Liyanapathirana, Jeevanthi; Popescu-Belis, Andrei
. To obtain a data set with spoken post-editing information, we use the French version of TED talks as the source texts submitted to MT, and the spoken English counterparts as their corrections, which are submitted to an ASR system. We experiment with various levels of artificial ASR noise and also...
Urbini, Flavio; Callea, Antonino; Chirumbolo, Antonio; Talamo, Alessandra; Ingusci, Emanuela; Ciavolino, Enrico
Purpose The purpose of this paper is twofold: first, to investigate the goodness of the input-process-output (IPO) model in order to evaluate work team performance within the Italian National Health Care System (NHS); and second, to test the mediating role of reflexivity as an overarching process factor between input and output. Design/methodology/approach The Italian version of the Aston Team Performance Inventory was administered to 351 employees working in teams in the Italian NHS. Mediation analyses with latent variables were performed via structural equation modeling (SEM); the significance of total, direct, and indirect effect was tested via bootstrapping. Findings Underpinned by the IPO framework, the results of SEM supported mediational hypotheses. First, the application of the IPO model in the Italian NHS showed adequate fit indices, showing that the process mediates the relationship between input and output factors. Second, reflexivity mediated the relationship between input and output, influencing some aspects of team performance. Practical implications The results provide useful information for HRM policies improving process dimensions of the IPO model via the mediating role of reflexivity as a key role in team performance. Originality/value This study is one of a limited number of studies that applied the IPO model in the Italian NHS. Moreover, no study has yet examined the role of reflexivity as a mediator between input and output factors in the IPO model.
227 Although Italians take pride in many of their traditions, longstanding political instability and inefficiency are not sources of satisfaction . A...it would move towards overcoming a division of labour among allies that is obsolete, thereby allowing for more effective management of current
Carla Mereu Keating
Full Text Available In the early 1930s the crime film Scarface: The Shame of a Nation (1932, USA, dir. Howard Hawks stirred censorship controversies in the United States because of its gritty portrayal of criminality and violence. Debates over crime, race and immigration proliferated in the North-American press and finally led to Italian-American pressure groups to call out for the film’s boycott because it ‘offended the Italian nation and people’ and vilified immigrant communities. Archival historical research in AVT has revealed how film versions have frequently been cut and dialogues ideologically manipulated to suit political agendas, commercial interests and dominant sexual and religious moralities. Indeed the translation of films has often served too many masters, suffering direct or indirect censorship intervention whenever a film defied existing societal taboos. My contribution aims to offer a diachronic perspective on the reception of Scarface lo sfregiato in Italy. It will look at the film’s Italian-language translation and re-translations for cinema, television and DVD, prepared by different hands and re-voiced by different actors during a span of fifty years (1940-90s. From the textual and contextual analysis of the film’s different Italian editions, it will be possible to trace significant ideological shifts in the reception of Italian-American crime iconography and in the language used to communicate it.
Sommers, Mitchell S; Barcroft, Joe
Three experiments were conducted to examine the effects of trial-to-trial variations in speaking style, fundamental frequency, and speaking rate on identification of spoken words. In addition, the experiments investigated whether any effects of stimulus variability would be modulated by phonetic confusability (i.e., lexical difficulty). In Experiment 1, trial-to-trial variations in speaking style reduced the overall identification performance compared with conditions containing no speaking-style variability. In addition, the effects of variability were greater for phonetically confusable words than for phonetically distinct words. In Experiment 2, variations in fundamental frequency were found to have no significant effects on spoken word identification and did not interact with lexical difficulty. In Experiment 3, two different methods for varying speaking rate were found to have equivalent negative effects on spoken word recognition and similar interactions with lexical difficulty. Overall, the findings are consistent with a phonetic-relevance hypothesis, in which accommodating sources of acoustic-phonetic variability that affect phonetically relevant properties of speech signals can impair spoken word identification. In contrast, variability in parameters of the speech signal that do not affect phonetically relevant properties are not expected to affect overall identification performance. Implications of these findings for the nature and development of lexical representations are discussed.
Phelan, P.F.; Keddy, C.; Beugelsdojk, T.J.
Several robotic systems have been developed by Los Alamos National Laboratory to handle radioactive material. Because of safety considerations, the robotic system must be under direct human supervision and interactive control continuously. In this paper, we describe the implementation of a voice-recognition system that permits this control, yet allows the robot to perform complex preprogrammed manipulations without the operator's intervention. To provide better interactive control, we connected to the robot's control computer, a speech synthesis unit, which provides audible feedback to the operator. Thus upon completion of a task or if an emergency arises, an appropriate spoken message can be reported by the control computer. The training programming and operation of this commercially available system are discussed, as are the practical problems encountered during operations
David J. Gunkel
Full Text Available With the advent of spoken dialogue systems (SDS, communication can no longer be considered a human-to-human transaction. It now involves machines. These mechanisms are not just a medium through which human messages pass, but now occupy the position of the other in social interactions. But the development of robust and efficient conversational agents is not just an engineering challenge. It also depends on research in human conversational behavior. It is the thesis of this paper that communication studies is best situated to respond to this need. The paper argues: 1 that research in communication can supply the information necessary to respond to and resolve many of the open problems in SDS engineering, and 2 that the development of SDS applications can provide the discipline of communication with unique opportunities to test extant theory and verify experimental results. We call this new area of interdisciplinary collaboration “computational interpersonal communication” (CIC
Callejas, Zoraida; Griol, David; López-Cózar, Ramón
In this paper we propose a method for predicting the user mental state for the development of more efficient and usable spoken dialogue systems. This prediction, carried out for each user turn in the dialogue, makes it possible to adapt the system dynamically to the user needs. The mental state is built on the basis of the emotional state of the user and their intention, and is recognized by means of a module conceived as an intermediate phase between natural language understanding and the dialogue management in the architecture of the systems. We have implemented the method in the UAH system, for which the evaluation results with both simulated and real users show that taking into account the user's mental state improves system performance as well as its perceived quality.
Full Text Available Abstract In this paper we propose a method for predicting the user mental state for the development of more efficient and usable spoken dialogue systems. This prediction, carried out for each user turn in the dialogue, makes it possible to adapt the system dynamically to the user needs. The mental state is built on the basis of the emotional state of the user and their intention, and is recognized by means of a module conceived as an intermediate phase between natural language understanding and the dialogue management in the architecture of the systems. We have implemented the method in the UAH system, for which the evaluation results with both simulated and real users show that taking into account the user's mental state improves system performance as well as its perceived quality.
Cicolini, Giancarlo; Della Pelle, Carlo; Simonetti, Valentina; Comparcini, Dania; Sepede, Gianna; Cipollone, Francesco
To investigate the role of psychiatric dimensions, behavioral or substance addictions and demographical variables as determinants of pathological gambling among nursing students. Multicenter cross-sectional study. From June to October 2015 a survey was carried out among Italian Nursing students. Data were collected using a six-section tool. Nursing students who completed the survey numbered 1083, 902 (83.3%) had some problems with gambling and 29 (2.7%) showed pathological gambling. Percentage of pathological gambling was significantly associate with illicit drug/alcohol use (65.5%; p=0.001) and with male gender (58.6%) comparing to student nurse with non-pathological gambling (20%) and those with some problem (24.2%). Significant main effect was observed for IAT score (Beta=0.119, t=3.28, p=0.001): higher IAT scores were associated with higher SOGS scores. Italian nursing students have some problems with gambling and pathological gambling problem, and males are those who have more problems. Results might be useful for faculties of health professionals to identify students at risk in an early stage, to direct prevention tailored interventions. Nursing faculties should be aware of the prevalence of Gambling among students. Prevention interventions should be planned to minimize the risk of gambling behavior in the future nurses' health care workers. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Full Text Available This paper frames a novel methodology for spoken document information retrieval to the spontaneous speech corpora and converting the retrieved document into the corresponding language text. The proposed work involves the three major areas namely spoken keyword detection, spoken document retrieval and automatic speech recognition. The keyword spotting is concerned with the exploit of the distribution capturing capability of the Auto Associative Neural Network (AANN for spoken keyword detection. It involves sliding a frame-based keyword template along the audio documents and by means of confidence score acquired from the normalized squared error of AANN to search for a match. This work benevolences a new spoken keyword spotting algorithm. Based on the match the spoken documents are retrieved and clustered together. In speech recognition step, the retrieved documents are converted into the corresponding language text using the AANN classifier. The experiments are conducted using the Dravidian language database and the results recommend that the proposed method is promising for retrieving the relevant documents of a spoken query as a key and transform it into the corresponding language.
Full Text Available OBJECTIVES: Intonation may serve as a cue for facilitated recognition and processing of spoken words and it has been suggested that the pitch contour of spoken words is implicitly remembered. Thus, using the repetition suppression (RS effect of BOLD-fMRI signals, we tested whether the same spoken words are differentially processed in language and auditory brain areas depending on whether or not they retain an arbitrary intonation pattern. EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN: Words were presented repeatedly in three blocks for passive and active listening tasks. There were three prosodic conditions in each of which a different set of words was used and specific task-irrelevant intonation changes were applied: (i All words presented in a set flat monotonous pitch contour (ii Each word had an arbitrary pitch contour that was set throughout the three repetitions. (iii Each word had a different arbitrary pitch contour in each of its repetition. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: The repeated presentations of words with a set pitch contour, resulted in robust behavioral priming effects as well as in significant RS of the BOLD signals in primary auditory cortex (BA 41, temporal areas (BA 21 22 bilaterally and in Broca's area. However, changing the intonation of the same words on each successive repetition resulted in reduced behavioral priming and the abolition of RS effects. CONCLUSIONS: Intonation patterns are retained in memory even when the intonation is task-irrelevant. Implicit memory traces for the pitch contour of spoken words were reflected in facilitated neuronal processing in auditory and language associated areas. Thus, the results lend support for the notion that prosody and specifically pitch contour is strongly associated with the memory representation of spoken words.
Zhao, Jingjing; Guo, Jingjing; Zhou, Fengying; Shu, Hua
Evidence from event-related potential (ERP) analyses of English spoken words suggests that the time course of English word recognition in monosyllables is cumulative. Different types of phonological competitors (i.e., rhymes and cohorts) modulate the temporal grain of ERP components differentially (Desroches, Newman, & Joanisse, 2009). The time course of Chinese monosyllabic spoken word recognition could be different from that of English due to the differences in syllable structure between the two languages (e.g., lexical tones). The present study investigated the time course of Chinese monosyllabic spoken word recognition using ERPs to record brain responses online while subjects listened to spoken words. During the experiment, participants were asked to compare a target picture with a subsequent picture by judging whether or not these two pictures belonged to the same semantic category. The spoken word was presented between the two pictures, and participants were not required to respond during its presentation. We manipulated phonological competition by presenting spoken words that either matched or mismatched the target picture in one of the following four ways: onset mismatch, rime mismatch, tone mismatch, or syllable mismatch. In contrast to the English findings, our findings showed that the three partial mismatches (onset, rime, and tone mismatches) equally modulated the amplitudes and time courses of the N400 (a negative component that peaks about 400ms after the spoken word), whereas, the syllable mismatched words elicited an earlier and stronger N400 than the three partial mismatched words. The results shed light on the important role of syllable-level awareness in Chinese spoken word recognition and also imply that the recognition of Chinese monosyllabic words might rely more on global similarity of the whole syllable structure or syllable-based holistic processing rather than phonemic segment-based processing. We interpret the differences in spoken word
Revill, Kathleen Pirog; Spieler, Daniel H.
When identifying spoken words, older listeners may have difficulty resolving lexical competition or may place a greater weight on factors like lexical frequency. To obtain information about age differences in the time course of spoken word recognition, young and older adults’ eye movements were monitored as they followed spoken instructions to click on objects displayed on a computer screen. Older listeners were more likely than younger listeners to fixate high-frequency displayed phonological competitors. However, degradation of auditory quality in younger listeners does not reproduce this result. These data are most consistent with an increased role for lexical frequency with age. PMID:21707175
Leech, Geoffrey; Wilson, Andrew (All Of Lancaster University)
Word Frequencies in Written and Spoken English is a landmark volume in the development of vocabulary frequency studies. Whereas previous books have in general given frequency information about the written language only, this book provides information on both speech and writing. It not only gives information about the language as a whole, but also about the differences between spoken and written English, and between different spoken and written varieties of the language. The frequencies are derived from a wide ranging and up-to-date corpus of English: the British Na
Sist, Luisa; Contini, Carla; Bandini, Anna; Bandini, Stefania; Massa, Licia; Zanin, Roberta; Maricchio, Rita; Gianesini, Gloria; Bassi, Erika; Tartaglini, Daniela; Palese, Alvisa; Ferraresi, Annamaria
The Missed Nursing Care (MNC) refers to nursing interventions that are not completed, partially completed, or postponed. Despite the relevance of MNC, no assessment tools are available in the Italian context, and no data regarding the occurrence of this phenomenon has been documented on a large scale to date. The study aims were: (1) to validate the Italian version of the MISSCARE Survey tool; (2) to measure the prevalence of missed interventions and reasons for missed care as perceived by clinical nurses working in Italian health care settings. After having conducted the forward and backward translation, pre-pilot and pilot phases were developed to ensure face and content validity as well as semantic and conceptual equivalence of the Italian version with the original version. The MISSCARE survey questionnaire was then distributed to 1,233 clinical nurses of whom 1,003 completed the questionnaire. Overall, 979 questionnaires were analysed. The questionnaires were completed from January to March 2012, by nurses working in medical and surgical hospital departments in the Emilia Romagna region of Italy. Construct validity and internal consistency of the instrument were assessed. The face and content validity were ascertained by a group of experts. The instrument acceptability was good given that 79.4% of respondents replied to all items. Construct validity was investigated by an Exploratory Factor Analysis. Four factors explaining 64.18% of variance emerged: communication, lack of facilities/supplies, lack of staff, and unexpected events. Internal consistency, evaluated with Cronbach a, was 0.94. The nursing interventions omitted with greater frequency were, in order: ambulation (74.8%), passive mobilization (69.6%) and oral care (51.3%). The three main reasons for missed interventions were: an unexpected increase in the number of patients (90.5%), increased instability of the clinical condition (86.1%) and insufficient human resources (85.5%). The Italian version of
Teresa Di Fiandra
Full Text Available The Italian Dementia National Plan was formulated in October 2014 by the Italian Ministry of Health in close cooperation with the regions, the National Institute of Health and the three major national associations of patients and carers. The main purpose of this strategy was to provide directive indications for promoting and improving interventions in the dementia field, not limiting to specialist and therapeutic actions, but particularly focusing on the support of patients and families throughout the pathways of care. Four main objectives are indicated: 1 promote health- and social-care interventions and policies; 2 create/strengthen the integrated network of services for dementia based on an integrated approach; 3 implement strategies for promoting appropriateness and quality of care; and 4 improve the quality of life of persons with dementia and their families by supporting empowerment and stigma reduction. These objectives and the pertaining actions are described in the present paper.
Italian Sign Language (LIS) is the name of the language used by the Italian Deaf community. The acronym LIS derives from Lingua italiana dei segni ("Italian language of signs"), although nowadays Italians refers to LIS as Lingua dei segni italiana, reflecting the more appropriate phrasing "Italian sign language." Historically,…
Cave-Bondi, G.; Merli, S.; Rogo, M.; Sgarbazzini, M.; Clemente, G.F.; Mancini, L.; Santori, G.; Tardella, Q.
The literature data concerning the biological and the chemical physical characteristics of plutonium are summarized in the first part of the paper. The experimental results of the plutonium concentration in complete diets, single food items and some human autopsy tissues, regarding the Italian situation, are then presented and discussed. Our experimental data are in good agreement with similar data reported in several studies carried out in some countries of the north emisphere
This paper reviews some representative scenarios of the evolution of the Italian primary energy consumption, updated recently. After an overview of the main macroeconomics assumptions the scenario results are cross checked at sectorial level, with a brief discussion of the underlining data and energy intensity trends. The emissions of CO 2 , SO 2 and NO x resulting from the considered scenarios are also reported and discussed [it
Pape, Daniel; Jesus, Luis M T
This paper describes a cross-linguistic production study of devoicing for European Portuguese (EP), Italian, and German. We recorded all stops and fricatives in four vowel contexts and two word positions. We computed the devoicing of the time-varying patterns throughout the stop and fricative duration. Our results show that regarding devoicing behaviour, EP is more similar to German than Italian. While Italian shows almost no devoicing of all phonologically voiced consonants, both EP and German show strong and consistent devoicing through the entire consonant. Differences in consonant position showed no effect for EP and Italian, but were significantly different for German. The height of the vowel context had an effect for German and EP. For EP, we showed that a more posterior place of articulation and low vowel context lead to significantly more devoicing. However, in contrast to German, we could not find an influence of consonant position on devoicing. The high devoicing for all phonologically voiced stops and fricatives and the vowel context influence are a surprising new result. With respect to voicing maintenance, EP is more like German than other Romance languages.
Giardini, A; Majani, G; Pierobon, A; Gremigni, P; Catapano, I
Knowledge of patients' opinions and beliefs about their illness is fundamental in interdisciplinary health care interventions. The IPQ and its revised version (IPQ-R) are questionnaires designed to assess components of the mental representation of illness described in Leventhal's self-regulation model. To validate the IPQ-R in the Italian population, verifying its psychometric properties and focusing on Part II of the instrument (opinions about disease), we enrolled 277 inpatients (216 males and 61 females) affected by myocardial infarction (n=70), coronary artery by-pass graft surgery (n=52), chronic heart failure (n=47), valve replacement (n=20), obstructive sleep apnoea syndrome associated to obesity (n=53) and respiratory failure (n=35). All patients completed the Italian version of the IPQ-R obtained by means of 3 translations and a back version. IPQ-R scores were compared to patients' scores on the SF-36 and AD schedule (on anxiety and depression). Structural validity and reliability (both internal and test-retest) of the Italian IPQ-R were assessed. The validity of Part II of the IPQ-R was confirmed. As in the original version, 7 factors were extracted. ANOVA revealed statistically significant differences between the different diseases. Correlations between IPQ-R and, respectively, the SF-36 and AD schedule were statistically significant and coherent with the constructs analyzed. Finally statistically significant correlations emerged between the IPQ-R factors. The test-retest reliability and internal consistency of the questionnaire were confirmed. The psychometric properties of the Italian version of the IPQ-R were demonstrated to be robust. Hence, the Italian version of the IPQ-R, which resulted homogeneous with the original version, could be useful in assessing the cognitive factors involved in patients' adjustment to various chronic illnesses.
Full Text Available This article introduces the first Spoken Language Identification system developed to distinguish among all eleven of South Africa’s official languages. The PPR-LM (Parallel Phoneme Recognition followed by Language Modeling) architecture...
Full Text Available We investigate modeling strategies for English code-switched words as found in a Swahili spoken term detection system. Code switching, where speakers switch language in a conversation, occurs frequently in multilingual environments, and typically...
Adank, P.M.; Noordzij, M.L.; Hagoort, P.
A repetitionsuppression functional magnetic resonance imaging paradigm was used to explore the neuroanatomical substrates of processing two types of acoustic variationspeaker and accentduring spoken sentence comprehension. Recordings were made for two speakers and two accents: Standard Dutch and a
Full Text Available government information and services. Our interviews, focus group discussions and surveys revealed that Lwazi, a telephone-based spoken dialog system, could greatly support current South African government efforts to effectively connect citizens to available...
Zhuang, Jie; Randall, Billi; Stamatakis, Emmanuel A; Marslen-Wilson, William D; Tyler, Lorraine K
Spoken word recognition involves the activation of multiple word candidates on the basis of the initial speech input--the "cohort"--and selection among these competitors. Selection may be driven primarily by bottom-up acoustic-phonetic inputs or it may be modulated by other aspects of lexical representation, such as a word's meaning [Marslen-Wilson, W. D. Functional parallelism in spoken word-recognition. Cognition, 25, 71-102, 1987]. We examined these potential interactions in an fMRI study by presenting participants with words and pseudowords for lexical decision. In a factorial design, we manipulated (a) cohort competition (high/low competitive cohorts which vary the number of competing word candidates) and (b) the word's semantic properties (high/low imageability). A previous behavioral study [Tyler, L. K., Voice, J. K., & Moss, H. E. The interaction of meaning and sound in spoken word recognition. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 7, 320-326, 2000] showed that imageability facilitated word recognition but only for words in high competition cohorts. Here we found greater activity in the left inferior frontal gyrus (BA 45, 47) and the right inferior frontal gyrus (BA 47) with increased cohort competition, an imageability effect in the left posterior middle temporal gyrus/angular gyrus (BA 39), and a significant interaction between imageability and cohort competition in the left posterior superior temporal gyrus/middle temporal gyrus (BA 21, 22). In words with high competition cohorts, high imageability words generated stronger activity than low imageability words, indicating a facilitatory role of imageability in a highly competitive cohort context. For words in low competition cohorts, there was no effect of imageability. These results support the behavioral data in showing that selection processes do not rely solely on bottom-up acoustic-phonetic cues but rather that the semantic properties of candidate words facilitate discrimination between competitors.
This study compares mastery of gender assignment and agreement in Italian by adult Italian-German bilinguals who have acquired two languages simultaneously (2L1), and by adult German highly proficient second language learners (L2ers) of Italian. Our data show that incompleteness in bilingual acquisition and in second language (L2) acquisition…
Wegener, Signy; Wang, Hua-Chen; de Lissa, Peter; Robidoux, Serje; Nation, Kate; Castles, Anne
There is an established association between children's oral vocabulary and their word reading but its basis is not well understood. Here, we present evidence from eye movements for a novel mechanism underlying this association. Two groups of 18 Grade 4 children received oral vocabulary training on one set of 16 novel words (e.g., 'nesh', 'coib'), but no training on another set. The words were assigned spellings that were either predictable from phonology (e.g., nesh) or unpredictable (e.g., koyb). These were subsequently shown in print, embedded in sentences. Reading times were shorter for orally familiar than unfamiliar items, and for words with predictable than unpredictable spellings but, importantly, there was an interaction between the two: children demonstrated a larger benefit of oral familiarity for predictable than for unpredictable items. These findings indicate that children form initial orthographic expectations about spoken words before first seeing them in print. A video abstract of this article can be viewed at: https://youtu.be/jvpJwpKMM3E. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
Thothathiri, Malathi; Snedeker, Jesse
Syntactic priming during language production is pervasive and well-studied. Hearing, reading, speaking or writing a sentence with a given structure increases the probability of subsequently producing the same structure, regardless of whether the prime and target share lexical content. In contrast, syntactic priming during comprehension has proven more elusive, fueling claims that comprehension is less dependent on general syntactic representations and more dependent on lexical knowledge. In three experiments we explored syntactic priming during spoken language comprehension. Participants acted out double-object (DO) or prepositional-object (PO) dative sentences while their eye movements were recorded. Prime sentences used different verbs and nouns than the target sentences. In target sentences, the onset of the direct-object noun was consistent with both an animate recipient and an inanimate theme, creating a temporary ambiguity in the argument structure of the verb (DO e.g., Show the horse the book; PO e.g., Show the horn to the dog). We measured the difference in looks to the potential recipient and the potential theme during the ambiguous interval. In all experiments, participants who heard DO primes showed a greater preference for the recipient over the theme than those who heard PO primes, demonstrating across-verb priming during online language comprehension. These results accord with priming found in production studies, indicating a role for abstract structural information during comprehension as well as production.
Lee, Sungjin; Noh, Hyungjong; Lee, Jonghoon; Lee, Kyusong; Lee, Gary Geunbae
Although there have been enormous investments into English education all around the world, not many differences have been made to change the English instruction style. Considering the shortcomings for the current teaching-learning methodology, we have been investigating advanced computer-assisted language learning (CALL) systems. This paper aims at summarizing a set of POSTECH approaches including theories, technologies, systems, and field studies and providing relevant pointers. On top of the state-of-the-art technologies of spoken dialog system, a variety of adaptations have been applied to overcome some problems caused by numerous errors and variations naturally produced by non-native speakers. Furthermore, a number of methods have been developed for generating educational feedback that help learners develop to be proficient. Integrating these efforts resulted in intelligent educational robots — Mero and Engkey — and virtual 3D language learning games, Pomy. To verify the effects of our approaches on students' communicative abilities, we have conducted a field study at an elementary school in Korea. The results showed that our CALL approaches can be enjoyable and fruitful activities for students. Although the results of this study bring us a step closer to understanding computer-based education, more studies are needed to consolidate the findings.
Van Engen, Kristin J; Chandrasekaran, Bharath; Smiljanic, Rajka
Extensive research shows that inter-talker variability (i.e., changing the talker) affects recognition memory for speech signals. However, relatively little is known about the consequences of intra-talker variability (i.e. changes in speaking style within a talker) on the encoding of speech signals in memory. It is well established that speakers can modulate the characteristics of their own speech and produce a listener-oriented, intelligibility-enhancing speaking style in response to communication demands (e.g., when speaking to listeners with hearing impairment or non-native speakers of the language). Here we conducted two experiments to examine the role of speaking style variation in spoken language processing. First, we examined the extent to which clear speech provided benefits in challenging listening environments (i.e. speech-in-noise). Second, we compared recognition memory for sentences produced in conversational and clear speaking styles. In both experiments, semantically normal and anomalous sentences were included to investigate the role of higher-level linguistic information in the processing of speaking style variability. The results show that acoustic-phonetic modifications implemented in listener-oriented speech lead to improved speech recognition in challenging listening conditions and, crucially, to a substantial enhancement in recognition memory for sentences.
Spoken dialog systems have the potential to offer highly intuitive user interfaces, as they allow systems to be controlled using natural language. However, the complexity inherent in natural language dialogs means that careful testing of the system must be carried out from the very beginning of the design process. This book examines how user models can be used to support such early evaluations in two ways: by running simulations of dialogs, and by estimating the quality judgments of users. First, a design environment supporting the creation of dialog flows, the simulation of dialogs, and the analysis of the simulated data is proposed. How the quality of user simulations may be quantified with respect to their suitability for both formative and summative evaluation is then discussed. The remainder of the book is dedicated to the problem of predicting quality judgments of users based on interaction data. New modeling approaches are presented, which process the dialogs as sequences, and which allow knowl...
resourced Languages, SLTU 2016, 9-12 May 2016, Yogyakarta, Indonesia Code-switched English Pronunciation Modeling for Swahili Spoken Term Detection Neil...Abstract We investigate modeling strategies for English code-switched words as found in a Swahili spoken term detection system. Code switching...et al. / Procedia Computer Science 81 ( 2016 ) 128 – 135 Our research focuses on pronunciation modeling of English (embedded language) words within
Given the nature of spoken text, the first requirement of an appropriate grammar is its ability to account for stretches of language (including recurring types of text or genres), in addition to clause level patterns. Second, the grammatical model needs to be part of a wider theory of language that recognises the functional nature and educational purposes of spoken text. The model also needs to be designed in a\\ud sufficiently comprehensive way so as to account for grammatical forms in speech...
Yoder, Paul J; Woynaroski, Tiffany; Fey, Marc E; Warren, Steven F; Gardner, Elizabeth
In an earlier randomized clinical trial, daily communication and language therapy resulted in more favorable spoken vocabulary outcomes than weekly therapy sessions in a subgroup of initially nonverbal preschoolers with intellectual disabilities that included only children with Down syndrome (DS). In this reanalysis of the dataset involving only the participants with DS, we found that more therapy led to larger spoken vocabularies at posttreatment because it increased children's canonical syllabic communication and receptive vocabulary growth early in the treatment phase.
Nanni, T.; Prodi, F.
Climate patterns in italy over the last two centuries are reconstructed using a new database of pluviometric and thermometric secular data series performed by the historic climatology group of the ISAC institute of CNR. The series were thoroughly quality checked and homogenized. The analysis shows that in Italy, over the last 200 years, air temperature has increased by about 1 0 C a century. At the same time a decrease in precipitation can be observed, albeit by a little amount and often not significant from a statistical point of view [it
Full Text Available It is well-known that the modern history of salicylates began in 1899 when the compound acetylsalicylic acid was registered and introduced commercially as “aspirin” by the Bayer Company of Germany. As a matter of fact, however, remedies made from willow bark had been used to treat fever and rheumatic complaints at least since 1763, when Edward Stone described their efficacy against malarian fever. A number of Italian scientists made significant contributions during the long period of research leading up to the synthesis of acetylsalicylic acid and its widespread use in rheumatic diseases. In this paper we will review the contributions of some of these researchers, beginning with Bartolomeo Rigatelli, who in 1824 used a willow bark extract as a therapeutic agent, denominating it “salino amarissimo antifebbrile” (very bitter antipyretic salt. In the same year, Francesco Fontana described this natural compound, giving it the name “salicina” (salicin. Two other Italian chemists added considerably to current knowledge of the salicylates: Raffaele Piria in 1838, while working as a research fellow in Paris, extracted the chemical compound salicylic acid, and Cesare Bertagnini in 1855 published a detailed description of the classic adverse event associated with salicylate overdoses – tinnitus – which he studied by deliberately ingesting excessive doses himself. Bertagnini and above all Piria also played conspicuous roles in the history of Italy during the period of the Italian Risorgimento, participating as volunteers in the crucial battle of Curtatone and Montanara during the first Italian War of Independence.
Facco, E; Gumirato, E; Humphris, G; Stellini, E; Bacci, C; Sivolella, S; Cavallin, F; Zanette, G
Anxiety is a relevant problem in dental practice. The Modified Dental Anxiety Scale (MDAS) is a brief, simple questionnaire consisting of five questions with a total score ranging from 5 to 25, the Italian version of which is not available yet. The aim of the study was to provide an Italian version of the MDAS and check its reliability in oral surgery, which is a major cause of dental anxiety due to the expected perception of pain and suffering. The Italian version of the test was administered to 230 patients (98 male and 132 female patients, ages 14-88 years) undergoing oral surgery. Further recorded data were: American Society of Anaesthesiologists physical status classification (ASA-PS), frequency of visiting the dentist and any previous distressing experiences in dental or medical setting. The internal consistency of the test was high, with a Cronbach's alpha=0.92. The MDAS score was significantly higher in females (Pdental settings (Panxiety prevalence in the general dental population; however our result agree with those of studies performed in other Countries in the generic population, suggesting the absence of major differences with respect to the surgical setting and show the reliability and manageability of the Italian version of MDAS.
Messina, A; Casani, A P; Manfrin, M; Guidetti, G
Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV) is the most common type of peripheral vertigo. BPPV often relapses after the first episode, with a recurrence rate between 15% and 50%. To date both the aetiopathogenetic processes that lead to otoconia detachment and the factors that make BPPV a relapsing disease are still unclear, but recent epidemiological studies have shown a possible association with cardiovascular risk factors. The aim of the present study (Sesto Senso Survey) was to evaluate in the Italian population through an observational survey, the main demographic and clinical characteristics of patients with BPPV (first episode or recurrent) with particular focus on the potential cardiovascular risk factors. The survey was conducted in 158 vestibology centres across Italy on 2,682 patients (mean age 59.3 ± 15.0 years; 39.1% males and 60.9% females) suffering from BPPV, from January 2013 to December 2014. The results showed a high prevalence of cardiovascular risk factors such as high blood pressure (55.8%), hypercholesterolaemia (38.6%) and diabetes (17.7%), as well as a family history of cardiovascular disease (49.4%). A high percentage of patients also had hearing loss (42.9%), tinnitus (41.2%), or both (26.8%). The presence of hypertension, dyslipidaemia and pre-existing cardiovascular comorbidities were significantly related to recurrent BPPV episodes (OR range between 1.84 and 2.31). In addition, the association with diabetes and thyroid/autoimmune disease (OR range between 1.73 and 1.89) was relevant. The survey results confirm the significant association between cardiovascular comorbidities and recurrent BPPV and identify them as a potential important risk factor for recurrence of BPPV in the Italian population, paving the way for the evaluation of new therapeutic strategies in the treatment of this disease. © Copyright by Società Italiana di Otorinolaringologia e Chirurgia Cervico-Facciale, Rome, Italy.
Full Text Available Competition advocacy is considered, together with enforcement, the core business of an antitrust authority. Broadly speaking there are at least three main tasks regularly performed by most, if not all, antitrust agencies that are amenable to the advocacy function: addressing laws and regulations in order to remove unnecessary impediments to competition; engaging in sector enquiries to understand markets behavior and identify critical issues; explaining the benefits of open competitive markets to the public opinion. This article examines these three main tasks and outlines the challenges for competition agencies, with references to the experience of the Italian Competition Authority (ICA and the initiatives undertaken at international level.
Hydrogen could become an important option in the new millennium. It provides the potential for a sustainable energy system as it can be used to meet most energy needs without harming the environment. In fact, hydrogen has the potential for contributing to the reduction of climate-changing emissions and other air pollutants as it exhibits clean combustion with no carbon or sulphur oxide emissions and very low nitrogen oxide emissions. Furthermore, it is capable of direct conversion to electricity in systems such as fuel cells without generating pollution. However, widespread use of hydrogen is not feasible today because of economic and technological barriers. In Italy, there is an ongoing national programme to facilitate the introduction of hydrogen as an energy carrier. This programme aims to promote, in an organic frame, a series of actions regarding the whole hydrogen cycle. It foresees the development of technologies in the areas of production, storage, transport and utilisation. Research addresses the development of technologies for separation and sequestration of CO 2 , The programme is shared by public organisations (research institutions and universities) and national industry (oil companies, electric and gas utilities and research institutions). Hydrogen can be used as a fuel, with significant advantages, both for electric energy generation/ co-generation (thermo-dynamic cycles and fuel cells) and transportation (internal combustion engine and fuel cells). One focus of research will be the development of fuel cell technologies. Fuel cells possess all necessary characteristics to be a key technology in a future economy based on hydrogen. During the initial phase of the project, hydrogen will be derived from fossil sources (natural gas), and in the second phase it will be generated from renewable electricity or nuclear energy. The presentation will provide a review of the hydrogen programme and highlight future goals. (author)
Full Text Available The integration of persons with disabilities and with reduced work capacity in the labour market represents one of the biggest challenges for labour market policies. The non-integration of disabled people in the labour market causes huge costs for the countries’ economy. The European Union’s aim is to transform passive social support into active support by means of labor market policy measures, to help people to obtain gainful employment and to raise employment levels of people with disabilities and with reduced work capacities. Earlier this target group has to work in the sheltered employment. But it changed from the 90’s years because of the social model of disability definition. Nowadays the main goal to help this target group integrates in the open employment. The members of European Union imagine this aim on other way. The Scandinavian countries or England prefer the equal opportunities and the personalised mainstreaming programmes and services. Other European countries, as Germany, Austria or Italy prefer the rehabilitation quota system. Thus, the labor force participation and employment rates for people with disabilities and with reduced working capacities are strong differences between the European countries. But lot of other options also influence the member of countries’ policy and employment system. Since the Amsterdam Treaty the European Union has devoted exceptional attention to the equal opportunities of disabled people, the enforcement of equal treatment, and the reduction of the dangers of discrimination, as it is, a significant part of persons with disabilities and reduced work capacity do not have a full-time job, they become unemployed two or three times more frequently than their abled-counterparts, and dispose of lower salary, therefore they need the help of their family and the community. This study examines the Italian situation. It bases on statistics on the Italian target group and provides comparisons with
Cardinale, A.; Verdelli, A.
The competitiveness of the Italian industry is very sensitive to the rising costs of energy. The European energy policy, if intended as an additional constraint, could deteriorate the situation. It could be, however, a good opportunity for the Italian industry to become more independent from fossil fuels, through an innovatory project at country level [it
The purpose of this study was to evaluate and compare the inclusion of different levels of pequi (Caryocar Brasiliense, Cambess) pulp in the processing of Italian salami made of lamb for the evaluation of their physicochemical and microbiological characteristics. Six formulations of Italian salamis were processed: no pequi ...
Agasisti, Tommaso; Salerno, C.S.
This study uses Data Envelopment Analysis to evaluate the cost efficiency of 52 Italian public universities. In addition to being one of the first such cost studies of the Italian system, it explicitly takes into account the internal cost structure of institutions’ education programs; a task not
Magnuson, James S.; Mirman, Daniel; Luthra, Sahil; Strauss, Ted; Harris, Harlan D.
Human perception, cognition, and action requires fast integration of bottom-up signals with top-down knowledge and context. A key theoretical perspective in cognitive science is the interactive activation hypothesis: forward and backward flow in bidirectionally connected neural networks allows humans and other biological systems to approximate optimal integration of bottom-up and top-down information under real-world constraints. An alternative view is that online feedback is neither necessary nor helpful; purely feed forward alternatives can be constructed for any feedback system, and online feedback could not improve processing and would preclude veridical perception. In the domain of spoken word recognition, the latter view was apparently supported by simulations using the interactive activation model, TRACE, with and without feedback: as many words were recognized more quickly without feedback as were recognized faster with feedback, However, these simulations used only a small set of words and did not address a primary motivation for interaction: making a model robust in noise. We conducted simulations using hundreds of words, and found that the majority were recognized more quickly with feedback than without. More importantly, as we added noise to inputs, accuracy and recognition times were better with feedback than without. We follow these simulations with a critical review of recent arguments that online feedback in interactive activation models like TRACE is distinct from other potentially helpful forms of feedback. We conclude that in addition to providing the benefits demonstrated in our simulations, online feedback provides a plausible means of implementing putatively distinct forms of feedback, supporting the interactive activation hypothesis. PMID:29666593
James S. Magnuson
Full Text Available Human perception, cognition, and action requires fast integration of bottom-up signals with top-down knowledge and context. A key theoretical perspective in cognitive science is the interactive activation hypothesis: forward and backward flow in bidirectionally connected neural networks allows humans and other biological systems to approximate optimal integration of bottom-up and top-down information under real-world constraints. An alternative view is that online feedback is neither necessary nor helpful; purely feed forward alternatives can be constructed for any feedback system, and online feedback could not improve processing and would preclude veridical perception. In the domain of spoken word recognition, the latter view was apparently supported by simulations using the interactive activation model, TRACE, with and without feedback: as many words were recognized more quickly without feedback as were recognized faster with feedback, However, these simulations used only a small set of words and did not address a primary motivation for interaction: making a model robust in noise. We conducted simulations using hundreds of words, and found that the majority were recognized more quickly with feedback than without. More importantly, as we added noise to inputs, accuracy and recognition times were better with feedback than without. We follow these simulations with a critical review of recent arguments that online feedback in interactive activation models like TRACE is distinct from other potentially helpful forms of feedback. We conclude that in addition to providing the benefits demonstrated in our simulations, online feedback provides a plausible means of implementing putatively distinct forms of feedback, supporting the interactive activation hypothesis.
Sarant, Julia Z; Holt, Colleen M; Dowell, Richard C; Rickards, Field W; Blamey, Peter J
This article documented spoken language outcomes for preschool children with hearing loss and examined the relationships between language abilities and characteristics of children such as degree of hearing loss, cognitive abilities, age at entry to early intervention, and parent involvement in children's intervention programs. Participants were evaluated using a combination of the Child Development Inventory, the Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test, and the Preschool Clinical Evaluation of Language Fundamentals depending on their age at the time of assessment. Maternal education, cognitive ability, and family involvement were also measured. Over half of the children who participated in this study had poor language outcomes overall. No significant differences were found in language outcomes on any of the measures for children who were diagnosed early and those diagnosed later. Multiple regression analyses showed that family participation, degree of hearing loss, and cognitive ability significantly predicted language outcomes and together accounted for almost 60% of the variance in scores. This article highlights the importance of family participation in intervention programs to enable children to achieve optimal language outcomes. Further work may clarify the effects of early diagnosis on language outcomes for preschool children.
Choroomi, S; Curotta, J
To review foreign body aspiration cases encountered over a 10-year period in a tertiary paediatric hospital, and to assess correlation between foreign body type and language spoken at home. Retrospective chart review of all children undergoing direct laryngobronchoscopy for foreign body aspiration over a 10-year period. Age, sex, foreign body type, complications, hospital stay and home language were analysed. At direct laryngobronchoscopy, 132 children had foreign body aspiration (male:female ratio 1.31:1; mean age 32 months (2.67 years)). Mean hospital stay was 2.0 days. Foreign bodies most commonly comprised food matter (53/132; 40.1 per cent), followed by non-food matter (44/132; 33.33 per cent), a negative endoscopy (11/132; 8.33 per cent) and unknown composition (24/132; 18.2 per cent). Most parents spoke English (92/132, 69.7 per cent; vs non-English-speaking 40/132, 30.3 per cent), but non-English-speaking patients had disproportionately more food foreign bodies, and significantly more nut aspirations (p = 0.0065). Results constitute level 2b evidence. Patients from non-English speaking backgrounds had a significantly higher incidence of food (particularly nut) aspiration. Awareness-raising and public education is needed in relevant communities to prevent certain foods, particularly nuts, being given to children too young to chew and swallow them adequately.
Jin, Su-Hyun; Liu, Chang
PURPOSE The purpose of this study was to examine the intelligibility of English consonants and vowels produced by Chinese-native (CN), and Korean-native (KN) students enrolled in American universities. METHOD 16 English-native (EN), 32 CN, and 32 KN speakers participated in this study. The intelligibility of 16 American English consonants and 16 vowels spoken by native and nonnative speakers of English was evaluated by EN listeners. All nonnative speakers also completed a survey of their language backgrounds. RESULTS Although the intelligibility of consonants and diphthongs for nonnative speakers was comparable to that of native speakers, the intelligibility of monophthongs was significantly lower for CN and KN speakers than for EN speakers. Sociolinguistic factors such as the age of arrival in the United States and daily use of English, as well as a linguistic factor, difference in vowel space between native (L1) and nonnative (L2) language, partially contributed to vowel intelligibility for CN and KN groups. There was no significant correlation between the length of U.S. residency and phoneme intelligibility. CONCLUSION Results indicated that the major difficulty in phonemic production in English for Chinese and Korean speakers is with vowels rather than consonants. This might be useful for developing training methods to improve English intelligibility for foreign students in the United States.
After tracing the historical highlights representing the development of the Fauser (Montecatini) technology based gasification processes for the production of ammonia and methanol, this paper outlines the key design, operation and performance characteristics of the Montecatini (Italy) process plant for heavy liquid hydrocarbons gasification by means of partial auto-thermal combustion with oxygen. The outline makes evident the technical-economical validity of the Montecatini design solutions which include energy recovery (even the heat dispersed through the gasifier walls is recovered and utilized to produce low pressure steam to preheat the fuel oil); reduced oxygen consumption by the high temperature preheating of all reagents; the ecologically compatible elimination of gas black; as well as, desulfurization with materials recovery. The plant process descriptions come complete with flowsheets. While demonstrating that the Italian developed technology is historically well rooted, the Author stresses that the current design versions of Montecatini gasification plants are up to date with innovative solutions, especially, with regard to pollution abatement, and cites the need for a more concerted marketing effort on the part of local industry to help improve the competitiveness of the Italian made product
Scott, C M; Windsor, J
Language performance in naturalistic contexts can be characterized by general measures of productivity, fluency, lexical diversity, and grammatical complexity and accuracy. The use of such measures as indices of language impairment in older children is open to questions of method and interpretation. This study evaluated the extent to which 10 general language performance measures (GLPM) differentiated school-age children with language learning disabilities (LLD) from chronological-age (CA) and language-age (LA) peers. Children produced both spoken and written summaries of two educational videotapes that provided models of either narrative or expository (informational) discourse. Productivity measures, including total T-units, total words, and words per minute, were significantly lower for children with LLD than for CA children. Fluency (percent T-units with mazes) and lexical diversity (number of different words) measures were similar for all children. Grammatical complexity as measured by words per T-unit was significantly lower for LLD children. However, there was no difference among groups for clauses per T-unit. The only measure that distinguished children with LLD from both CA and LA peers was the extent of grammatical error. Effects of discourse genre and modality were consistent across groups. Compared to narratives, expository summaries were shorter, less fluent (spoken versions), more complex (words per T-unit), and more error prone. Written summaries were shorter and had more errors than spoken versions. For many LLD and LA children, expository writing was exceedingly difficult. Implications for accounts of language impairment in older children are discussed.
Full Text Available In May 2004 the Balì Museum, Planetarium and interactive science museum, was opened to the public in Italy: 35 hands-on exhibits designed according to the interactive tradition of the Exploratorium in San Francisco, an astronomic observatory for educational activities, a Planetarium with 70 places. With a total investment of about three million euros, about two thirds of which were spent on restructuring the splendid eighteenth-century villa in which it is housed, the undertaking may be considered a small one in comparison with other European science centres. Three million euros: perhaps enough to cover the cost of only the splendid circular access ramp to the brand-new Cosmocaixa in Barcelona, an investment of one hundred million euros. But the interesting aspect of the story of the Balì Museum (but also of other Italian stories, as we shall see lies in the fact that this lively and advanced science centre stands in the bucolic region of the Marches, next to a small town of only 800 inhabitants (Saltara, in the Province of Pesaro and Urbino, in a municipal territory that has a total of 5000. Whereas in Italy the projects for science centres comparable with the Catalan one, for example projects for Rome and Turin, never get off the ground, smaller ones are opening in small and medium-sized towns: why is this? And what does the unusual location of the centres entail for science communication in Italy? This Focus does not claim to tell the whole truth about Italian interactive museums, but it does offer some phenomenological cues to open a debate on the cultural, economic and political premises that favour their lives.
Vertical disintegration in most industries and the globalization of markets has led to significant changes in the pattern of international division of labour among manufacturing firms. At the same time increased competition from low cost producers, exchange rate constraints, the opening up of CEE countries have had huge consequences for the Italian industrial system. This paper deals with the Veneto footwear, furniture and refrigeraion industries and examines the effects of foreign direct inv...
Morelli Giovanna; Fisichella Chiara
Nowadays, culture and tourism are two keywords of growing importance, more than ever, for the Italian recovery from the present global economic crisis. Therefore, policy makers and tourism operators view cultural tourism as a strategic potential source of growth. On the other hand, in everyone's imaginary, Italy is strongly linked to culture, both material and immaterial, on which it founds expected significant tourist flows. Moreover, music is "per se" an immaterial cultural resource without...
Fineschi, V; Dell'Erba, A S; Di Paolo, M; Procaccianti, P
Certain methods of homicide used by the Italian Mafia are intended to have an admonitory significance. One such method is the so-called "incaprettamento." This study analyzes 18 cases of homicidal ligature strangulation in which the body was found in this typical position. The circumstances of the crime and the macroscopic and microscopic evidence were evaluated to determine whether or not the ligatures on the wrists and ankles were placed antemortem or postmortem.
Farci, Manolo; Rossi, Luca; Boccia Artieri, Giovanni; Giglietto, Fabio
In this paper, we describe the results of a qualitative study conducted with 120 Italian Facebook users to investigate how Facebook enables people to achieve a mutually constitutive intimacy with their own friendship network: a negotiation of intimacy in public through self-disclosure, where the affordances of the platform are useful to elicit significant reactions, validations and demonstrations of affection from others. We observed that, in order to achieve various levels of intimacy on Fac...
Full Text Available The paper deals with an example of the Italian garden applied as a type in the Czech lands. Villa Kratochvíle is one of the very few cases of an independently created Renaissance villa in the territory of the Czech Republic. Its author was an Italian builder coming from the area around Como Lake – Baldassare Maggi and he was commissioned by a significant Czech nobleman, William of Rosenberg. Villa Kratochvíle together with the surrounding landscape is compared with the landscape of lakes around Mantua and Palazzo Te, which is typologically similar. Especially the use of large water bodies is what these two places and their surrounding landscape have in common. Italian arts came to the Czech lands directly with Italian artists – one of them was the garden design. However, it was transformed there by the cultural tradition as well as the geographical location.
Mondini, Sara; Guarino, Ramona; Jarema, Gonia; Kehayia, Eva; Nair, Vasavan; Nucci, Massimo; Mapelli, Daniela
Cognitive reserve could be defined as the accumulation of experiences, abilities, knowledge and changes that occur throughout the lifespan. One of the most difficult changes in life is the experience of emigrating to a foreign country. The present investigation aimed to compare the cognitive reserve of two paired groups of elderly: Italians living in Italy and Italians who in adult age (around 20 years) emigrated to Montreal. Both groups attended the same years of school, in Italy. Cognitive reserve was measured in the two groups by a structured and standardised questionnaire, the cognitive reserve questionnaire. Cognitive reserve showed to be significantly higher in the Italian-Canadian individuals (i.e. Italians who emigrated). Emigration might act as an environmental factor that enriches people's lifestyle and reflects itself in the amount of their cognitive reserve.
Full Text Available The contribution of Italian art, especially Venetian, was decisive to the secularisation of art in the Ionian Islands and the shaping of the so-called Ionian School, in the context of a broader Western influence affecting all aspects of life and culture, especially on the islands of Zakynthos and Corfu. Italian influences, mainly of Renaissance, Mannerism and Baroque art, can be identified both on the iconographic and the stylistic level of artworks, with theoretical support. This article explores facets of the dialogue of secular painting in the Ionian with Italian art in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, focussing on works and artists that highlight significant aspects of this multilayered phenomenon and also through secondary channels that expand the horizon of analysis. Procession paintings, with their various connotations, and portraiture, which flourished in secular Ionian art, offer the most interesting material as regards the selection, reception and management of Italian models and points of reference.
Full Text Available Tujuan dari penelitian ini adalah untuk menggambarkan penerapan metode Communicative Language Teaching/CLT untuk pembelajaran spoken recount. Penelitian ini menelaah data yang kualitatif. Penelitian ini mengambarkan fenomena yang terjadi di dalam kelas. Data studi ini adalah perilaku dan respon para siswa dalam pembelajaran spoken recount dengan menggunakan metode CLT. Subjek penelitian ini adalah para siswa kelas X SMA Negeri 1 Kuaro yang terdiri dari 34 siswa. Observasi dan wawancara dilakukan dalam rangka untuk mengumpulkan data dalam mengajarkan spoken recount melalui tiga aktivitas (presentasi, bermain-peran, serta melakukan prosedur. Dalam penelitian ini ditemukan beberapa hal antara lain bahwa CLT meningkatkan kemampuan berbicara siswa dalam pembelajaran recount. Berdasarkan pada grafik peningkatan, disimpulkan bahwa tata bahasa, kosakata, pengucapan, kefasihan, serta performa siswa mengalami peningkatan. Ini berarti bahwa performa spoken recount dari para siswa meningkat. Andaikata presentasi ditempatkan di bagian akhir dari langkah-langkah aktivitas, peforma spoken recount para siswa bahkan akan lebih baik lagi. Kesimpulannya adalah bahwa implementasi metode CLT beserta tiga praktiknya berkontribusi pada peningkatan kemampuan berbicara para siswa dalam pembelajaran recount dan bahkan metode CLT mengarahkan mereka untuk memiliki keberanian dalam mengonstruksi komunikasi yang bermakna dengan percaya diri. Kata kunci: Communicative Language Teaching (CLT, recount, berbicara, respon siswa
Full Text Available The mastery of speaking skills in English has become a major requisite in engineering industry. Engineers are expected to possess speaking skills for executing their routine activities and career prospects. The article focuses on the experimental study conducted to improve English spoken proficiency of Indian engineering students using task-based approach. Tasks are activities that concentrates on the learners in providing the main context and focus for learning. Therefore, a task facilitates the learners to use language rather than to learn it. This article further explores the pivotal role played by the pedagogical intervention in enabling the learners to improve their speaking skill in L2. The participants of the study chosen for control and experimental group were first year civil engineering students comprising 38 in each group respectively. The vital tool used in the study is oral communicative tasks administered to the experimental group. The oral communicative tasks enabled the students to think and generate sentences on their own orally. The‘t’ Test was computed to compare the performance of the students in control and experiment groups.The results of the statistical analysis revealed that there was a significant level of improvement in the oral proficiency of the experimental group.
Madsen, Jan Halberg; d'Ambrosio, Luigi
The purpose of this investigation is to explore how Italian restaurants define authentic Italian culinary experiences and how these experiences are designed and rendered to the restaurants’ guests.......The purpose of this investigation is to explore how Italian restaurants define authentic Italian culinary experiences and how these experiences are designed and rendered to the restaurants’ guests....
During the ALICE week held in Bologna from 19 to 23 June, the Collaboration recognized two of its top suppliers. From left to right: Robert Terpin (MIPOT), Pier Luigi Bellutti (ITC), Andrea Zanotti, President of ITC, Luciano Bosisio (Trieste University), Gennady Zinovjev (Kiev), Catherine Decosse (CERN), Lodovico Riccati, ALICE Collaboration Board Chair (INFN Torino), Paolo Giubellino (INFN Torino), Mario Zen, Director of ITC, Maurizio Boscardin (ITC), Paolo Tonella (ITC), Jurgen Schukraft, ALICE Spokesperson (CERN), Giacomo Vito Margagliotti (Trieste University), Nevio Grion (INFN Trieste), Marco Bregant (INFN Trieste). Front row from left to right: Paolo Traverso (ITC), Federico Carminati, ALICE Computing Project Leader (CERN), and Jean-Robert Lutz, ITS-SSD Project leader (IPHC Strasbourg). It is in the picturesque city of Bologna that the ALICE Collaboration has rewarded two Italian suppliers, Istituto Trentino di Cultura ITC-irst (Trento) and MIPOT (Cormons), both involved in the construction of the Sili...
Clerici, Alessandro; Beccarello, Massimo; Gallanti, Massimo
The paper reports the results of a study led by Confindustria (Italian Federation of Industrial Associations) on the Italian situation with respect to energy efficiency policies and their effective implementations. The study is being continuously updated with the contributions of ENEA (Italian National Agency for New Technologies, Energy and Sustainable Economic Development) and ERSE (previously CESI Ricerca) and highlights the obtainable savings through efficient technologies now already available for applications in the final uses of energy for both the industrial, commercial and domestic sectors.
Thomassen, Bjørn; Forlenza, Rosario
project for the new Constitution had a considerable impact on modern Italian culture and politics and on the building of a modern mass democracy and welfare state. During the crucial historical juncture that followed the collapse of Fascism, Catholic politicians and intellectuals sought to interpret......This article analyzes the Catholic contribution to the Italian republican and democratic Constitution of 1948. The focus is on the specific way in which the Italian citizen became symbolically coded as a ‘person’ and not as an ‘individual’, inspired by Catholic social philosophy. The Catholic...
Full Text Available The Italian journeys of Jean Mabillon (1685-1686 and Bernard de Montfaucon (1698-1701, monks of the Congregation of St. Maur and fathers of diplomatic and palaeography, had a significant role in the early modern advancement of studies on Medieval art and antiquities. As regards their acquisition of art-historical information and direct experience of monuments, the position of Italian erudites was relevant. This is particularly clear with Mabillon's surveys in churches, catacombs, archives and private collections made with the essential help of Italian scholars and through the exchanges of art-historical data between the French monks and several Italian colleagues, such as emerged from their correspondence. As a result, this article aims to illustrate this process and outline a context of mutual influences between French and Italian traditions of scholarship.
Full Text Available This research is descriptive study of registers found in spoken and written communication. The type of this research is Descriptive Qualitative Research. In this research, the data of the study is register in spoken and written communication that are found in a book entitled "Communicating! Theory and Practice" and from internet. The data can be in the forms of words, phrases and abbreviation. In relation with method of collection data, the writer uses the library method as her instrument. The writer relates it to the study of register in spoken and written communication. The technique of analyzing the data using descriptive method. The types of register in this term will be separated into formal register and informal register, and identify the meaning of register.
This study examined the effects of preceding contextual stimuli, either auditory or visual, on the identification of spoken target words. Fifty-one participants (29% males, 71% females; mean age = 24.5 years, SD = 8.5) were divided into three groups: no context, auditory context, and visual context. All target stimuli were spoken words masked with white noise. The relationships between the context and target stimuli were as follows: identical word, similar word, and unrelated word. Participants presented with context experienced a sequence of six context stimuli in the form of either spoken words or photographs. Auditory and visual context conditions produced similar results, but the auditory context aided word identification more than the visual context in the similar word relationship. We discuss these results in the light of top-down processing, motor theory, and the phonological system of language.
Rothman, Russell L; Malone, Robb; Bryant, Betsy; Wolfe, Catherine; Padgett, Penelope; DeWalt, Darren A; Weinberger, Morris; Pignone, Michael
The purpose of this study was to develop and validate a new knowledge scale for patients with type 2 diabetes and poor literacy: the Spoken Knowledge in Low Literacy patients with Diabetes (SKILLD). The authors evaluated the 10-item SKILLD among 217 patients with type 2 diabetes and poor glycemic control at an academic general medicine clinic. Internal reliability was measured using the Kuder-Richardson coefficient. Performance on the SKILLD was compared to patient socioeconomic status, literacy level, duration of diabetes, and glycated hemoglobin (A1C). Respondents' mean age was 55 years, and they had diabetes for an average of 8.4 years; 38% had less than a sixth-grade literacy level. The average score on the SKILLD was 49%. Less than one third of patients knew the signs of hypoglycemia or the normal fasting blood glucose range. The internal reliability of the SKILLD was good (0.72). Higher performance on the SKILLD was significantly correlated with higher income (r = 0.22), education level (r = 0.36), literacy status (r = 0.33), duration of diabetes (r = 0.30), and lower A1C (r = -0.16). When dichotomized, patients with low SKILLD scores (< or = 50%) had significantly higher A1C (11.2% vs 10.3%, P < .01). This difference remained significant when adjusted for covariates. The SKILLD demonstrated good internal consistency and validity. It revealed significant knowledge deficits and was associated with glycemic control. The SKILLD represents a practical scale for patients with diabetes and low literacy.
Full Text Available Lying is a universal activity and the detection of lying a universal concern. Presently, there is great interest in determining objective measures of deception. The examination of speech, in particular, holds promise in this regard; yet, most of what we know about the relationship between speech and lying is based on the assessment of English-speaking participants. Few studies have examined indicators of deception in languages other than English. The world’s languages differ in significant ways, and cross-linguistic studies of deceptive communications are a research imperative. Here we review some of these differences amongst the world’s languages, and provide an overview of a number of recent studies demonstrating that cross-linguistic research is a worthwhile endeavour. In addition, we report the results of an empirical investigation of pitch, response latency, and speech rate as cues to deception in Italian speech. True and false opinions were elicited in an audio-taped interview. A within subjects analysis revealed no significant difference between the average pitch of the two conditions; however, speech rate was significantly slower, while response latency was longer, during deception compared with truth-telling. We explore the implications of these findings and propose directions for future research, with the aim of expanding the cross-linguistic branch of research on markers of deception.
A number of previous studies found that the consistency of sound-to-spelling mappings (feedback consistency) affects spoken word recognition. In auditory lexical decision experiments, words that can only be spelled one way are recognized faster than words with multiple potential spellings. Previous.......g., lobe) faster than words with consistent rhymes where the vowel has a less typical spelling (e.g., loaf). The present study extends previous literature by showing that auditory word recognition is affected by orthographic regularities at different grain sizes, just like written word recognition...... and spelling. The theoretical and methodological implications for future research in spoken word recognition are discussed....
Full Text Available The Internet has changed media fandom in two main ways: it helps fans connect with each other despite physical distance, leading to the formation of international fan communities; and it helps fans connect with the creators of the TV show, deepening the relationship between TV producers and international fandoms. To assess whether Italian fan communities active online are indeed part of transnational online communities and whether the Internet has actually altered their relationship with the creators of the original text they are devoted to, qualitative analysis and narrative interviews of 26 Italian fans of American TV shows were conducted to explore the fan-producer relationship. Results indicated that the online Italian fans surveyed preferred to stay local, rather than using geography-leveling online tools. Further, the sampled Italian fans' relationships with the show runners were mediated or even absent.
Litvak de Perez de la Dehesa, Lil
Suggests that a lecture on Futurism delivered in Catalan at the Ateneo in Barcelona on June 18, 1904, by Gabriel Alomar probably was the greatest influence on F. T. Marinetti and Italian Futurism. (DS)
Full Text Available From 1996 to 1999 a conservation programme was carried out within the framework of EC contract “European gene banking project for the pig genetic resources” (Ollivier et al., 2001 in the Italian local pig breeds. The aims of the program included the primary characterization of the breeds, i.e. information on the organization in charge of the breed, breeding population numbers, breed description and qualifications, and field trials on productive and reproductive performances. In this context the “Semen Bank of Italian local pig breeds” was built. A total of 30,835 straws of four Italian local pig breeds (Cinta Senese, Casertana, Mora Romagnola and Nero Siciliano, collected from 42 sires, have been stored. In this work semen quality traits, lipid composition and freezability of the four Italian local pig breeds are reported.
Piazzi, Andrea; Testa, Luana; Del Missier, Giovanni; Dario, Mariopaolo; Stocco, Ester
Specific features characterized Italian psychiatry during Fascism (1922-45), distinguishing it from Nazi psychiatry and giving rise to different operational outcomes, so we have investigated the state of Italian psychiatry during this period. We review the historical situation that preceded it and describe the social and health policies that Fascism introduced following new legislative and regulatory acts. We examine the preventive and therapeutic role played by psychiatry (the electric shock was an Italian invention) and, thanks to the Enciclopedia Italiano published during those years, we are able to highlight psychiatry's relationship to psychology, psychoanalysis, philosophy and religion. The shortcomings of Italian psychiatric research and practice are also seen in terms of what the State failed to do rather than what it did.
Bucci, Rosaria; Rongo, Roberto; Zito, Eugenio; Galeotti, Angela; Valletta, Rosa; D'Antò, Vincenzo
To validate and cross-culturally adapt the Italian version of the Psychological Impact of Dental Aesthetics Questionnaire (PIDAQ) among Italian young adults. After translation, back translation, and cross-cultural adaptation of the English PIDAQ, a first version of the Italian questionnaire was pretested. The final Italian PIDAQ was administered to 598 subjects aged 18-30 years, along with two other instruments: the aesthetic component of the index of orthodontic treatment need (IOTN-AC) and the perception of occlusion scale (POS), which identified the self-reporting grade of malocclusion. Structural validity was assessed by means of factorial analysis, internal consistency was measured with Cronbach's alpha coefficient (α), convergent validity was assessed by means of Spearman correlation, and test-retest reliability was calculated with intra-class correlation coefficient (ICC) and standard measurement error. Criterion validity was evaluated by multivariate and univariate analysis of variance with Bonferroni post hoc tests. The α of the Italian PIDAQ domains ranged between 0.79 and 0.92. The ICC was between 0.81 and 0.90. The mean scores of each PIDAQ domain showed a statistically significant difference when analysed according to the IOTN-AC and POS scores. The satisfactory psychometric properties make PIDAQ a usable tool for future studies on oral health-related quality of life among Italian young adults.
Bertoni, Danilo; Cavicchioli, Daniele; Latruffe, Laure
We analyse whether the event of succession changes the performance of Italian family farms, using data from the Italian Farm Accountancy Data Network (FADN) and several performance indicators during 2008-2014. T-tests of equality of means and propensity score matching reveal that succession has a negative effect on performance related to capital, due to an increase in capital after succession. Furthermore, in the first years examined, performance per hectare after succession is lower for farm...
Hampton, L. H.; Kaiser, A. P.
Background: Although spoken-language deficits are not core to an autism spectrum disorder (ASD) diagnosis, many children with ASD do present with delays in this area. Previous meta-analyses have assessed the effects of intervention on reducing autism symptomatology, but have not determined if intervention improves spoken language. This analysis…
Ferrazzano, Vincenzo; Scarabotti, Serena
The accident at the TEPCO Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant materially reverberated, with its emotional impact, on the preparation of a new nuclear policy in Italy. Italians, wishing to decide directly on the electric power source for their country, applied for a referendum procedure aimed at abrogating the newly enacted legal framework which would have paved the way for an Italian nuclear renaissance. The referendum on the repeal of nuclear power passed on 12-13 June 2011. In addition to the recent termination of the nuclear programme in Italy, effective by law for five years as a result of this referendum, this aborted renaissance of nuclear energy in Italy requires leaders to make many important decisions including how to set up decommissioning programmes and activities and how to establish a national repository for nuclear waste as envisaged by general European policy on the management of such waste. Leaders must also reach consensus regarding the future of the Italian nuclear safety authority. The purpose of this paper is to explore how the Italian Parliament has reacted to this recent referendum on the future of nuclear energy in Italy by strengthening its focus on the safe management of nuclear waste as part of the decommissioning process. More significantly, this paper will analyse the newly enacted Law No. 27 of 24 March 2012 concerning urgent measures for infrastructure development to enhance the competitiveness of the country. This law derives from a political measure taken by Prime Minister Mario Monti in the context of an economic stimulus programme aimed at improving market competition. Article 24 of this so-called 'Liberalisation Decree' focuses on the need for accelerating the deactivation and decommissioning process of Italian nuclear power plants and research reactors. In light of the newly enacted legal provisions, this paper sets forth a general comment on the legal provisions included in Article 24 of Law No. 27/2012 by indicating their
Full Text Available Law is often the source of social discriminations, but, at the same time, it can be thekey to delete these social discriminations. The authors try to give an example of thisphenomenon, by analyzing the impact of the Italian citizenship’s rules over the descendantsof the Italian citizens emigrated abroad and, especially, in South America.Indeed, according to the former Italian law, only fathers could transmit iure sanguinisthe citizenship to their children: moreover, women automatically lost theItalian citizenship if they get a foreign citizenship by concluding a marriage witha foreign husband.These rules hardly discriminate the Italian women emigrated abroad and, especially,their descendants who were prevented to get the Italian’s citizenship.These discriminatory rules were finally deleted by the Italian Constitutional Courtin the Seventies and in the Eighties: however, the effects of those rules still persisted,since the decision of the Constitutional Court could not overcome the temporal limit of the entry into force of the Constitution (01.01.1948 and, therefore, could not“cover” the discriminatory facts occurred before that date.Finally in 2009, the Italian Supreme Court, by extending the effects ratione temporisof the decisions of the Constitutional Court, “reopened the doors” of the Italiancitizenship to a huge number of Italian citizenship born from Italian women beforethe 01.01.1948.Therefore, the authors focus on the social impact of this decision for all the potentialItalian citizens living in South America and try to assess its juridical effects overthe Italian law.
Maria Chiara D'Errico
Full Text Available The liberalization of the Italian electricity market is a decade old. Within these last ten years, the supply side has been extensively analyzed, but not the demand side. The aim of this paper is to provide a new method for estimation of the demand elasticity, based on Bayesian methods applied to the Italian electricity market. We used individual demand bids data in the day-ahead market in the Italian Power Exchange (IPEX, for 2011, in order to construct an aggregate demand function at the hourly level. We took into account the existence of both elastic and inelastic bidders on the demand side. The empirical results show that elasticity varies significantly during the day and across periods of the year. In addition, the elasticity hourly distribution is clearly skewed and more so in the daily hours. The Bayesian method is a useful tool for policy-making, insofar as the regulator can start with a priori historical information on market behavior and estimate actual market outcomes in response to new policy actions.
Full Text Available Mismatch negativity (MMN, a primary response to an acoustic change and an index of sensory memory, was used to investigate the processing of the discrimination between familiar and unfamiliar Consonant-Vowel (CV speech contrasts. The MMN was elicited by rare familiar words presented among repetitive unfamiliar words. Phonetic and phonological contrasts were identical in all conditions. MMN elicited by the familiar word deviant was larger than that elicited by the unfamiliar word deviant. The presence of syllable contrast did significantly alter the word-elicited MMN in amplitude and scalp voltage field distribution. Thus, our results indicate the existence of word-related MMN enhancement largely independent of the word status of the standard stimulus. This enhancement may reflect the presence of a longterm memory trace for familiar spoken words in tonal languages.
McDuffie, Andrea; Banasik, Amy; Bullard, Lauren; Nelson, Sarah; Feigles, Robyn Tempero; Hagerman, Randi; Abbeduto, Leonard
A small randomized group design (N = 20) was used to examine a parent-implemented intervention designed to improve the spoken language skills of school-aged and adolescent boys with FXS, the leading cause of inherited intellectual disability. The intervention was implemented by speech-language pathologists who used distance video-teleconferencing to deliver the intervention. The intervention taught mothers to use a set of language facilitation strategies while interacting with their children in the context of shared story-telling. Treatment group mothers significantly improved their use of the targeted intervention strategies. Children in the treatment group increased the duration of engagement in the shared story-telling activity as well as use of utterances that maintained the topic of the story. Children also showed increases in lexical diversity, but not in grammatical complexity.
Marchman, Virginia A; Fernald, Anne; Hurtado, Nereyda
Research using online comprehension measures with monolingual children shows that speed and accuracy of spoken word recognition are correlated with lexical development. Here we examined speech processing efficiency in relation to vocabulary development in bilingual children learning both Spanish and English (n=26 ; 2 ; 6). Between-language associations were weak: vocabulary size in Spanish was uncorrelated with vocabulary in English, and children's facility in online comprehension in Spanish was unrelated to their facility in English. Instead, efficiency of online processing in one language was significantly related to vocabulary size in that language, after controlling for processing speed and vocabulary size in the other language. These links between efficiency of lexical access and vocabulary knowledge in bilinguals parallel those previously reported for Spanish and English monolinguals, suggesting that children's ability to abstract information from the input in building a working lexicon relates fundamentally to mechanisms underlying the construction of language.
Full Text Available Little is known about the ‘material’ equipment of the early missionaries who set out to evangelize pagans and apostates, since the authors of the sources focused mainly on the successes (or failures of the missions. Information concerning the ‘infrastructure’ of missions is rather occasional and of fragmentary nature. The major part in the process of evangelization must have been played by the spoken word preached indirectly or through an interpreter, at least in the areas and milieus remote from the centers of ancient civilization. It could not have been otherwise when coming into contact with communities which did not know the art of reading, still less writing. A little more attention is devoted to the other two media, that is, the written word and the images. The significance of the written word was manifold, and – at least as the basic liturgical books are concerned (the missal, the evangeliary? – the manuscripts were indispensable elements of missionaries’ equipment. In certain circumstances the books which the missionaries had at their disposal could acquire special – even magical – significance, the most comprehensible to the Christianized people (the examples given: the evangeliary of St. Winfried-Boniface in the face of death at the hands of a pagan Frisian, the episode with a manuscript in the story of Anskar’s mission written by Rimbert. The role of the plastic art representations (images during the missions is much less frequently mentioned in the sources. After quoting a few relevant examples (Bede the Venerable, Ermoldus Nigellus, Paul the Deacon, Thietmar of Merseburg, the author also cites an interesting, although not entirely successful, attempt to use drama to instruct the Livonians in the faith while converting them to Christianity, which was reported by Henry of Latvia.
Marshall, C. R.; Jones, A.; Fastelli, A.; Atkinson, J.; Botting, N.; Morgan, G.
Background: Deafness has an adverse impact on children's ability to acquire spoken languages. Signed languages offer a more accessible input for deaf children, but because the vast majority are born to hearing parents who do not sign, their early exposure to sign language is limited. Deaf children as a whole are therefore at high risk of language…
Chehr Azad, Mohammad Hassan; Farrokhi, Farahman; Zohrabi, Mohammad
The current study was an attempt to investigate the effects of different corrective feedback (CF) conditions on Iranian EFL learners' spoken accuracy and fluency (AF) and the trade-off between them. Consequently, four pre-intermediate intact classes were randomly selected as the control, delayed explicit metalinguistic CF, extensive recast, and…
Nava, Andrea; Pedrazzini, Luciana
We describe an exploratory study carried out within the University of Milan, Department of English the aim of which was to analyse features of the spoken English of first-year Modern Languages undergraduates. We compiled a learner corpus, the "Role Play" corpus, which consisted of 69 role-play interactions in English carried out by…
A number of previous studies found that the consistency of sound-to-spelling mappings (feedback consistency) affects spoken word recognition. In auditory lexical decision experiments, words that can only be spelled one way are recognized faster than words with multiple potential spellings. Previous studies demonstrated this by manipulating…
Kirk, Karen Iler; Prusick, Lindsay; French, Brian; Gotch, Chad; Eisenberg, Laurie S; Young, Nancy
Under natural conditions, listeners use both auditory and visual speech cues to extract meaning from speech signals containing many sources of variability. However, traditional clinical tests of spoken word recognition routinely employ isolated words or sentences produced by a single talker in an auditory-only presentation format. The more central cognitive processes used during multimodal integration, perceptual normalization, and lexical discrimination that may contribute to individual variation in spoken word recognition performance are not assessed in conventional tests of this kind. In this article, we review our past and current research activities aimed at developing a series of new assessment tools designed to evaluate spoken word recognition in children who are deaf or hard of hearing. These measures are theoretically motivated by a current model of spoken word recognition and also incorporate "real-world" stimulus variability in the form of multiple talkers and presentation formats. The goal of this research is to enhance our ability to estimate real-world listening skills and to predict benefit from sensory aid use in children with varying degrees of hearing loss. American Academy of Audiology.
Brouwer, Susanne; Bradlow, Ann R.
This study examined the temporal dynamics of spoken word recognition in noise and background speech. In two visual-world experiments, English participants listened to target words while looking at four pictures on the screen: a target (e.g. "candle"), an onset competitor (e.g. "candy"), a rhyme competitor (e.g.…
Yip, Michael C.
Two word-spotting experiments were conducted to examine the question of whether native Cantonese listeners are constrained by phonotactics information in spoken word recognition of Chinese words in speech. Because no legal consonant clusters occurred within an individual Chinese word, this kind of categorical phonotactics information of Chinese…
Loucas, Tom; Riches, Nick; Baird, Gillian; Pickles, Andrew; Simonoff, Emily; Chandler, Susie; Charman, Tony
Spoken word recognition, during gating, appears intact in specific language impairment (SLI). This study used gating to investigate the process in adolescents with autism spectrum disorders plus language impairment (ALI). Adolescents with ALI, SLI, and typical language development (TLD), matched on nonverbal IQ listened to gated words that varied…
Nakai, Satsuki; Lindsay, Shane; Ota, Mitsuhiko
When both members of a phonemic contrast in L2 (second language) are perceptually mapped to a single phoneme in one's L1 (first language), L2 words containing a member of that contrast can spuriously activate L2 words in spoken-word recognition. For example, upon hearing cattle, Dutch speakers of English are reported to experience activation…
Rigler, Hannah; Farris-Trimble, Ashley; Greiner, Lea; Walker, Jessica; Tomblin, J. Bruce; McMurray, Bob
This study investigated the developmental time course of spoken word recognition in older children using eye tracking to assess how the real-time processing dynamics of word recognition change over development. We found that 9-year-olds were slower to activate the target words and showed more early competition from competitor words than…
Singh, Anne-Marie; Marcus, Nadine; Ayres, Paul
Two experiments involving 125 grade-10 students learning about commerce investigated strategies to overcome the transient information effect caused by explanatory spoken text. The transient information effect occurs when learning is reduced as a result of information disappearing before the learner has time to adequately process it, or link it…
Montgomery, James W.; Polunenko, Anzhela; Marinellie, Sally A.
The role of phonological short-term memory (PSTM), attentional resource capacity/allocation, and processing speed on children's spoken narrative comprehension was investigated. Sixty-seven children (6-11 years) completed a digit span task (PSTM), concurrent verbal processing and storage (CPS) task (resource capacity/allocation), auditory-visual…
Full Text Available The paper explores similarities and differences in the strategies of structuring information at sentence level in spoken and written language, respectively. In particular, it is concerned with the position of the rheme in the sentence in the two different modalities of language, and with the application and correlation of the end-focus and the end-weight principles. The assumption is that while there is a general tendency in both written and spoken language to place the focus in or close to the final position, owing to the limitations imposed by short-term memory capacity (and possibly by other factors, for the sake of easy processibility, it may occasionally be more felicitous in spoken language to place the rhematic element in the initial position or at least close to the beginning of the sentence. The paper aims to identify differences in the function of selected grammatical structures in written and spoken language, respectively, and to point out circumstances under which initial focus is a convenient alternative to the usual end-focus principle.
Pitt, Mark A.
One account of how pronunciation variants of spoken words (center-> "senner" or "sennah") are recognized is that sublexical processes use information about variation in the same phonological environments to recover the intended segments [Gaskell, G., & Marslen-Wilson, W. D. (1998). Mechanisms of phonological inference in speech perception.…
Huettig, Falk; Brouwer, Susanne
It is now well established that anticipation of upcoming input is a key characteristic of spoken language comprehension. It has also frequently been observed that literacy influences spoken language processing. Here, we investigated whether anticipatory spoken language processing is related to individuals' word reading abilities. Dutch adults with dyslexia and a control group participated in two eye-tracking experiments. Experiment 1 was conducted to assess whether adults with dyslexia show the typical language-mediated eye gaze patterns. Eye movements of both adults with and without dyslexia closely replicated earlier research: spoken language is used to direct attention to relevant objects in the environment in a closely time-locked manner. In Experiment 2, participants received instructions (e.g., 'Kijk naar de(COM) afgebeelde piano(COM)', look at the displayed piano) while viewing four objects. Articles (Dutch 'het' or 'de') were gender marked such that the article agreed in gender only with the target, and thus, participants could use gender information from the article to predict the target object. The adults with dyslexia anticipated the target objects but much later than the controls. Moreover, participants' word reading scores correlated positively with their anticipatory eye movements. We conclude by discussing the mechanisms by which reading abilities may influence predictive language processing. Copyright © 2015 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
Nicholas, Johanna G.; Geers, Ann E.
Purpose: The major purpose of this study was to provide information about expected spoken language skills of preschool-age children who are deaf and who use a cochlear implant. A goal was to provide "benchmarks" against which those skills could be compared, for a given age at implantation. We also examined whether parent-completed…
Pisoni, David B.
This 21st annual progress report summarizes research activities on speech perception and spoken language processing carried out in the Speech Research Laboratory, Department of Psychology, Indiana University in Bloomington. As with previous reports, the goal is to summarize accomplishments during 1996 and 1997 and make them readily available. Some…
Ben-David, Boaz M.; Chambers, Craig G.; Daneman, Meredyth; Pichora-Fuller, M. Kathleen; Reingold, Eyal M.; Schneider, Bruce A.
Purpose: To use eye tracking to investigate age differences in real-time lexical processing in quiet and in noise in light of the fact that older adults find it more difficult than younger adults to understand conversations in noisy situations. Method: Twenty-four younger and 24 older adults followed spoken instructions referring to depicted…
Kolářová, V.; Kolář, Jan; Mikulová, M.
Roč. 107, č. 1 (2017), s. 19-38 ISSN 0032-6585 Institutional support: RVO:67985840 Keywords : written Czech * spoken Czech * verbal nouns Subject RIV: AI - Linguistics OBOR OECD: Pure mathematics https://www.degruyter.com/view/j/pralin.2017.107.issue-1/pralin-2017-0002/pralin-2017-0002. xml
Full Text Available This study addressed the development of and the relationship between foundational metalinguistic skills and word reading skills in Arabic. It compared Arabic-speaking children’s phonological awareness (PA, morphological awareness, and voweled and unvoweled word reading skills in spoken and standard language varieties separately in children across five grade levels from childhood to adolescence. Second, it investigated whether skills developed in the spoken variety of Arabic predict reading in the standard variety. Results indicate that although individual differences between students in PA are eliminated toward the end of elementary school in both spoken and standard language varieties, gaps in morphological awareness and in reading skills persisted through junior and high school years. The results also show that the gap in reading accuracy and fluency between Spoken Arabic (SpA and Standard Arabic (StA was evident in both voweled and unvoweled words. Finally, regression analyses showed that morphological awareness in SpA contributed to reading fluency in StA, i.e., children’s early morphological awareness in SpA explained variance in children’s gains in reading fluency in StA. These findings have important theoretical and practical contributions for Arabic reading theory in general and they extend the previous work regarding the cross-linguistic relevance of foundational metalinguistic skills in the first acquired language to reading in a second language, as in societal bilingualism contexts, or a second language variety, as in diglossic contexts.
Bernsen, Niels Ole; And Others
Presents principles of dialog cooperativity derived from a corpus of task-oriented spoken human-machine dialog. Analyzes the "corpus" to produce a set of dialog design principles intended to prevent users from having to initiate clarification and repair metacommunication that the system would not understand. Proposes a "more…
Čermáková, Anna; Komrsková, Zuzana; Kopřivová, Marie; Poukarová, Petra
-, 25.04.2017 (2017), s. 393-414 ISSN 2509-9507 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA15-01116S Institutional support: RVO:68378092 Keywords : Causality * Discourse marker * Spoken language * Czech Subject RIV: AI - Linguistics OBOR OECD: Linguistics https://link.springer.com/content/pdf/10.1007%2Fs41701-017-0014-y.pdf
Jones, Christian; Carter, Ronald
This article reports on mixed methods classroom research carried out at a British university. The study investigates the effectiveness of two different explicit teaching frameworks, Illustration--Interaction--Induction (III) and Present--Practice--Produce (PPP) used to teach the same spoken discourse markers (DMs) to two different groups of…
Piai, V.; Roelofs, A.P.A.; Rommers, J.; Maris, E.G.G.
Two major components form the basis of spoken word production: the access of conceptual and lexical/phonological information in long-term memory, and motor preparation and execution of an articulatory program. Whereas the motor aspects of word production have been well characterized as reflected in
Yoder, Paul J.; Woynaroski, Tiffany; Fey, Marc E.; Warren, Steven F.; Gardner, Elizabeth
In an earlier randomized clinical trial, daily communication and language therapy resulted in more favorable spoken vocabulary outcomes than weekly therapy sessions in a subgroup of initially nonverbal preschoolers with intellectual disabilities that included only children with Down syndrome (DS). In this reanalysis of the dataset involving only…
Möller, S.; Smeele, P.; Boland, H.; Krebber, J.
In the present paper, we investigate the validity and reliability of de-facto evaluation standards, defined for measuring or predicting the quality of the interaction with spoken dialogue systems. Two experiments have been carried out with a dialogue system for controlling domestic devices. During
Shantha, S.; Mekala, S.
The mastery of speaking skills in English has become a major requisite in engineering industry. Engineers are expected to possess speaking skills for executing their routine activities and career prospects. The article focuses on the experimental study conducted to improve English spoken proficiency of Indian engineering students using task-based…
Carrero Pérez, Nubia Patricia
Task based learning (TBL) or Task based learning and teaching (TBLT) is a communicative approach widely applied in settings where English has been taught as a foreign language (EFL). It has been documented as greatly useful to improve learners' communication skills. This research intended to find the effect of tasks on students' spoken interaction…
Devereux, Barry J.; Taylor, Kirsten I.; Randall, Billi; Geertzen, Jeroen; Tyler, Lorraine K.
Understanding spoken words involves a rapid mapping from speech to conceptual representations. One distributed feature-based conceptual account assumes that the statistical characteristics of concepts' features--the number of concepts they occur in ("distinctiveness/sharedness") and likelihood of co-occurrence ("correlational…
KRISHNAMURTHI, M.G.; MCCORMACK, WILLIAM
THE TWENTY GRADED UNITS IN THIS TEXT CONSTITUTE AN INTRODUCTION TO BOTH INFORMAL AND FORMAL SPOKEN KANNADA. THE FIRST TWO UNITS PRESENT THE KANNADA MATERIAL IN PHONETIC TRANSCRIPTION ONLY, WITH KANNADA SCRIPT GRADUALLY INTRODUCED FROM UNIT III ON. A TYPICAL LESSON-UNIT INCLUDES--(1) A DIALOG IN PHONETIC TRANSCRIPTION AND ENGLISH TRANSLATION, (2)…
Shaw, Emily P.
This dissertation is an examination of gesture in two game nights: one in spoken English between four hearing friends and another in American Sign Language between four Deaf friends. Analyses of gesture have shown there exists a complex integration of manual gestures with speech. Analyses of sign language have implicated the body as a medium…
Barberà, Gemma; Zwets, Martine
In both signed and spoken languages, pointing serves to direct an addressee's attention to a particular entity. This entity may be either present or absent in the physical context of the conversation. In this article we focus on pointing directed to nonspeaker/nonaddressee referents in Sign Language of the Netherlands (Nederlandse Gebarentaal,…
Miller, Jon F.; Andriacchi, Karen; Nockerts, Ann
Purpose: This tutorial discusses the importance of language sample analysis and how Systematic Analysis of Language Transcripts (SALT) software can be used to simplify the process and effectively assess the spoken language production of adolescents. Method: Over the past 30 years, thousands of language samples have been collected from typical…
Al-Surmi, Mansoor Ali
TV shows, especially soap operas and sitcoms, are usually considered by ESL practitioners as a source of authentic spoken conversational materials presumably because they reflect the linguistic features of natural conversation. However, practitioners might be faced with the dilemma of how to evaluate whether such conversational materials reflect…
Magimairaj, Beula M.; Montgomery, James W.
Purpose: This study investigated the role of processing complexity of verbal working memory tasks in predicting spoken sentence comprehension in typically developing children. Of interest was whether simple and more complex working memory tasks have similar or different power in predicting sentence comprehension. Method: Sixty-five children (6- to…
Adank, P.M.; Noordzij, M.L.; Hagoort, P.
A repetition–suppression functional magnetic resonance imaging paradigm was used to explore the neuroanatomical substrates of processing two types of acoustic variation—speaker and accent—during spoken sentence comprehension. Recordings were made for two speakers and two accents: Standard Dutch and
With questions and answer sections throughout, this book helps you to improve your written and spoken English through understanding the structure of the English language. This is a thorough and useful book with all parts of speech and grammar explained. Used by ELT self-study students.
Baker, Kimberly F.; Montgomery, Allen A.; Abramson, Ruth
The perception and the cerebral lateralization of spoken emotions were investigated in children and adolescents with high-functioning forms of autism (HFFA), and age-matched typically developing controls (TDC). A dichotic listening task using nonsense passages was used to investigate the recognition of four emotions: happiness, sadness, anger, and…
Yu, Ping; Pan, Yingxin; Li, Chen; Zhang, Zengxiu; Shi, Qin; Chu, Wenpei; Liu, Mingzhuo; Zhu, Zhiting
Oral production is an important part in English learning. Lack of a language environment with efficient instruction and feedback is a big issue for non-native speakers' English spoken skill improvement. A computer-assisted language learning system can provide many potential benefits to language learners. It allows adequate instructions and instant…
Kolářová, V.; Kolář, Jan; Mikulová, M.
Roč. 107, č. 1 (2017), s. 19-38 ISSN 0032-6585 Institutional support: RVO:67985840 Keywords : written Czech * spoken Czech * verbal nouns Subject RIV: AI - Linguistics OBOR OECD: Pure mathematics https://www.degruyter.com/view/j/pralin.2017.107.issue-1/pralin-2017-0002/pralin-2017-0002.xml
This study examined the development of spoken discourse among L2 learners of Japanese who received extensive practice on grammatical chunks. Participants in this study were 22 college students enrolled in an elementary Japanese course. They received instruction on a set of grammatical chunks in class through communicative drills and the…
de Hoog, Brigitte E; Langereis, Margreet C; van Weerdenburg, Marjolijn; Keuning, Jos; Knoors, Harry; Verhoeven, Ludo
Large variability in individual spoken language outcomes remains a persistent finding in the group of children with cochlear implants (CIs), particularly in their grammatical development. In the present study, we examined the extent of delay in lexical and morphosyntactic spoken language levels of children with CIs as compared to those of a normative sample of age-matched children with normal hearing. Furthermore, the predictive value of auditory and verbal memory factors in the spoken language performance of implanted children was analyzed. Thirty-nine profoundly deaf children with CIs were assessed using a test battery including measures of lexical, grammatical, auditory and verbal memory tests. Furthermore, child-related demographic characteristics were taken into account. The majority of the children with CIs did not reach age-equivalent lexical and morphosyntactic language skills. Multiple linear regression analyses revealed that lexical spoken language performance in children with CIs was best predicted by age at testing, phoneme perception, and auditory word closure. The morphosyntactic language outcomes of the CI group were best predicted by lexicon, auditory word closure, and auditory memory for words. Qualitatively good speech perception skills appear to be crucial for lexical and grammatical development in children with CIs. Furthermore, strongly developed vocabulary skills and verbal memory abilities predict morphosyntactic language skills. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
McDuffie, Andrea; Machalicek, Wendy; Bullard, Lauren; Nelson, Sarah; Mello, Melissa; Tempero-Feigles, Robyn; Castignetti, Nancy; Abbeduto, Leonard
Using a single case design, a parent-mediated spoken-language intervention was delivered to three mothers and their school-aged sons with fragile X syndrome, the leading inherited cause of intellectual disability. The intervention was embedded in the context of shared storytelling using wordless picture books and targeted three empirically derived…
Full Text Available Students’ activities in the learning process are very important to indicate the quality of learning process. One of which is spoken activity. This study was intended to analyze the elementary school students’ spoken activities and their responses in joining Math learning process by peer-tutoring. Descriptive qualitative design was piloted by means of implementing the qualitative approach and case study. Further, the data were collected from observation, field note, interview, and questionnaire that were administered to 24 fifth-graders of First State Elementary School of Kunjang, Kediri, East Java Indonesia. The design was that four students were recruited as the tutors; while the rest was subdivided into four different groups. The data taken from the observation and questionnaire were analyzed descriptively which were later categorized into various categories starting from poor category to the excellent one. The data collected from the interview were analyzed through the interactive model, data reduction, data exposing, and summation. The findings exhibited that the tutors’ spoken activities covering: questioning, answering, explaining, discussing, and presenting, were improved during three meetings and sharply developed in general. In addition, the students’ spoken activities that engaged some groups were considered good. Besides, there was a linear and positive interconnectedness between tutors’ activity and their groups’ activities.
Gozali, Imelda; Harjanto, Ignatius
The need to improve the spoken English of kindergarten students in an international preschool in Surabaya prompted this Classroom Action Research (CAR). It involved the implementation of Form-Focused Instruction (FFI) strategy coupled with Corrective Feedback (CF) in Grammar lessons. Four grammar topics were selected, namely Regular Plural form,…
Elich, Matthew; And Others
Tested Bandler and Grinder's proposal that eye movement direction and spoken predicates are indicative of sensory modality of imagery. Subjects reported images in the three modes, but no relation between imagery and eye movements or predicates was found. Visual images were most vivid and often reported. Most subjects rated themselves as visual,…
Gràcia, Marta; Vega, Fàtima; Galván-Bovaira, Maria José
Broadly speaking, the teaching of spoken language in Spanish schools has not been approached in a systematic way. Changes in school practices are needed in order to allow all children to become competent speakers and to understand and construct oral texts that are appropriate in different contexts and for different audiences both inside and…
Yip, Michael C. W.
Previous experimental psycholinguistic studies suggested that the probabilistic phonotactics information might likely to hint the locations of word boundaries in continuous speech and hence posed an interesting solution to the empirical question on how we recognize/segment individual spoken word in speech. We investigated this issue by using…
Wang, Zhen; Zechner, Klaus; Sun, Yu
As automated scoring systems for spoken responses are increasingly used in language assessments, testing organizations need to analyze their performance, as compared to human raters, across several dimensions, for example, on individual items or based on subgroups of test takers. In addition, there is a need in testing organizations to establish…
Caselli, Maria Cristina; Monaco, Laura; Trasciani, Manuela; Vicari, Stefano
This article compares lexical and grammatical abilities of a mental-age-matched sample of Italian preschoolers with Down syndrome (DS), specific language impairment (SLI), or typical development. Results showed that the children with DS or with SLI performed significantly worse than did the typically developing children. Although no significant differences emerged in lexical abilities and morphosyntactic comprehension abilities between the children with DS or with SLI, significant differences did emerge in morphosyntactic production capacities. Qualitative analysis of the morphosyntactic errors revealed strong similarities between the two groups. The results are discussed in terms of the role of verbal memory abilities and the linguistic features of Italian.
judged each speech sample using the perceptual construct of Speech Severity using a visual analog scale. Additional measures obtained to describe participants included the Sentence Intelligibility Test (SIT), the 10-item Communication Participation Item Bank (CPIB), and standard biopsychosocial measures of depression (Beck Depression Inventory-Fast Screen; BDI-FS), fatigue (Fatigue Severity Scale; FSS), and overall disease severity (Expanded Disability Status Scale; EDSS). Healthy controls completed all measures, with the exception of the CPIB and EDSS. All data were analyzed using standard, descriptive and parametric statistics. For the MSCI group, the relationship between neuropsychological test scores and speech-language variables were explored for each speech task using Pearson correlations. The relationship between neuropsychological test scores and Speech Severity also was explored. Results and Discussion: Topic familiarity for descriptive discourse did not strongly influence speech production or perceptual variables; however, results indicated predicted task-related differences for some spoken language measures. With the exception of the MSCI group, all speaker groups produced the same or slower global speech timing (i.e., speech and articulatory rates), more silent and filled pauses, more grammatical and longer silent pause durations in spontaneous discourse compared to reading aloud. Results revealed no appreciable task differences for linguistic complexity measures. Results indicated group differences for speech rate. The MSCI group produced significantly faster speech rates compared to the MSDYS group. Both the MSDYS and the MSCI groups were judged to have significantly poorer perceived Speech Severity compared to typically aging adults. The Task x Group interaction was only significant for the number of silent pauses. The MSDYS group produced fewer silent pauses in spontaneous speech and more silent pauses in the reading task compared to other groups. Finally
João Mendonça Correia
Full Text Available Spoken word recognition and production require fast transformations between acoustic, phonological and conceptual neural representations. Bilinguals perform these transformations in native and non-native languages, deriving unified semantic concepts from equivalent, but acoustically different words. Here we exploit this capacity of bilinguals to investigate input invariant semantic representations in the brain. We acquired EEG data while Dutch subjects, highly proficient in English listened to four monosyllabic and acoustically distinct animal words in both languages (e.g. ‘paard’-‘horse’. Multivariate pattern analysis (MVPA was applied to identify EEG response patterns that discriminate between individual words within one language (within-language discrimination and generalize meaning across two languages (across-language generalization. Furthermore, employing two EEG feature selection approaches, we assessed the contribution of temporal and oscillatory EEG features to our classification results. MVPA revealed that within-language discrimination was possible in a broad time-window (~50-620 ms after word onset probably reflecting acoustic-phonetic and semantic-conceptual differences between the words. Most interestingly, significant across-language generalization was possible around 550-600 ms, suggesting the activation of common semantic-conceptual representations from the Dutch and English nouns. Both types of classification, showed a strong contribution of oscillations below 12 Hz, indicating the importance of low frequency oscillations in the neural representation of individual words and concepts. This study demonstrates the feasibility of MVPA to decode individual spoken words from EEG responses and to assess the spectro-temporal dynamics of their language invariant semantic-conceptual representations. We discuss how this method and results could be relevant to track the neural mechanisms underlying conceptual encoding in
Full Text Available Abstract Background The purpose of this study was to evaluate the overall diet quality effects, mainly on antioxidant nutritional status and some cytokines related to the cellular immune response as well as oxidative stress in a healthy Italian population group. Methods An observational study was conducted on 131 healthy free-living subjects. Dietary intake was assessed by dietary diary. Standardised procedures were used to make anthropometric measurements. On blood samples (serum, plasma and whole blood were evaluated: antioxidant status by vitamin A, vitamin E, carotenoids, vitamin C, uric acid, SH groups, SOD and GPx activities; lipid blood profile by total cholesterol, HDL cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, triglycerides; total antioxidant capacity by FRAP and TRAP; the immune status by TNF-α, and IL-10 cytokines; the levels of malondialdehyde in the erythrocytes as marker of lipid peroxidation. Results The daily macronutrients intake (g/day have shown a high lipids consumption and significant differences between the sexes with regard to daily micronutrients intake. On total sample mean Mediterranean Diet Score (MDS was 4.5 ± 1.6 and no significant differences between the sexes were present. A greater adherence to a Mediterranean dietary pattern increases the circulating plasma levels of carotenoids (lutein plus zeaxanthin, cryptoxanthin, α and β-carotene, vitamin A and vitamin E. The levels of endogenous antioxidants were also improved. We observed higher levels in anti-inflammatory effect cytokines (IL-10 in subjects with MDS ≥ 6, by contrast, subjects with MDS ≤ 3 show higher levels in sense of proinflammatory (TNF α P 4. Our data suggest a protective role of vitamin A against chronic inflammatory conditions especially in subjects with the highest adherence to the Mediterranean-type dietary pattern. Conclusions Mediterranean dietary pattern is associated with significant amelioration of multiple risk factors, including a better
Amato, Annalisa; Ferrigno, Luigina; Salvatore, Marco; Toccaceli, Virgilia
The Italian National CF Registry (INCFR) is based on the official agreement between the clinicians of the Italian National Referral Centers for Cystic Fibrosis and the researchers of the Istituto Superiore di Sanità (National Center for Rare Diseases; National Center for Epidemiology, Surveillance and Health Care Promotion). OBJECTIVES The main aim of INCFR is to contribute to the improvement in CF patients health care and clinical management through: i. the estimates of CF prevalence and incidence in Italy; ii. the analyses of medium and long term clinical and epidemiological trends of the disesase; iii. the identification of the main health care needs at regional and national level to contribute to the Health Care programmes and to the distribution of resources. MATERIALS AND METHODS Analyses and results described in the present Report are referred to patients in charge to the Italian National Referral Centers for Cystic Fibrosis in 2010. Data were sent by Centers by means of a specific software (Camilla, Ibis Informatica). The Italian National Referral Centers for Cystic Fibrosis sent a total of 5,271 individual records; 1,112 records were excluded from the analyses due to restricted inclusion criteria. The total number of patients included in INCFR for analyses is 4,159. RESULTS INCFR database includes all prevalent cases at 1th January 2010 as well as all new diagnoses done in 2010. The present Report has been organized into 9 sections. 1. Demography: estimated 2010 CF prevalence was 7/100,000 residents in Italy; 52% of the patients were male, CF distribution showed higher frequency in patients aged 7 to 35 years. In 2010, 48.9% of the patients were more than 18 years old. 2. Diagnoses: most of the CF patients were diagnosed before two years of age (66.7%); a significant percentage of patients (11.4%) was diagnosed in adult-age. 3. New diagnoses (2010): new diagnoses were 168. Sixty-five percent of them was diagnosed before the second year of age and 17%in
Full Text Available Although the study of Italian Language and Literature generally does not only con sist of teaching/learning contemporary Italian as a foreign language (FL, the paper will present some of the main results of testing general proficiency in Italian as a FL achieved by most students from the first to the fourth years of Italian Studies at the University of Ljubljana. The presentation of results is limited to both receptive abilities (listening and reading comprehension and to grammar and lexical proficiency. The testing project start ed with the first cycle of testing in May 2010 in the framework of a bilateral agreement be tween Italian Studies in Ljubljana and in Belgrade (the other two cycles will follow in 2011 and 2012. The paper is concerned about the (non achievement of appropriate levels (1st to 4th year, from B1 to C2, respectively, according to the Common European Framework agreed on by teaching staff at the two universities who considered their experience with students in the last years. It will attempt to sketch out some initial ideas about the extent to which the study of Italian Language and Literature contributes to general proficiency in Italian as a foreign language.
CERN welcomed Italian singer-songwriter Annalisa for a week-long visit to the Laboratory to shoot an Italian television production about the Laboratory. Annalisa in the CERN Control Centre. The Italian artist has a degree in physics from the University of Turin, Italy. She is a singer and songwriter, famous for her successful participation in the Italian talent show, Amici di Maria De Filippi. She has recorded four albums as solo artist and has participated twice in the Sanremo Music Festival, the most important Italian song contest. She has also received numerous Italian music awards, and has earned international recognition. Thanks to her knowledge of physics and her great influence with the Italian youth, Annalisa was selected to host an Italian television production about CERN aimed at young people.
state of affairs resulting from the use of various alphabets such as Arabic, Kirill, Latin by Turkic republics that declared independence and by autonomous and semi-autonomous Turkic communities or Turkic minorities living in various regions in the World have risen the need for a common communicative language and alphabet among the cognate people of those communities. For this reason, Activities of Teaching Turkish as Spoken in Turkey to Turkic Speakers have gained a particular significance today. Activities of Teaching Turkish as Spoken in Turkey to Turkic Speakers is still handled within the scope of “Teaching Turkish to Foreigners” and people who have no background of Turkish language are given the same curriculum as Turkic speakers. This causes students who have zero Turkish language background and the ones who have the basic structural knowledge of the language at a native level to be given the same education in the same classroom environment and same tests. In these classrooms where the students’ levels of readiness vary dramatically, half of the students are unable to follow the lesson. While teaching Turkish as spoken in Turkey to the Turkic speakers, the equivalence level of the words in the dialect to be taught must be taken into consideration. You can teach someone who knows nothing about a subject better than the ones that have different or inaccurate knowledge of the subject. The same applies to teaching Turkish spoken in Turkey to Turkic speakers. In order to decide which of The Turkic dialects is to be the common communicative language, we must pay attention to factors such as the geographical size of the land that the dialect is spoken in, the domain, the level of appeal and the power of the dialect in visual and print media. As Turkish spoken in Turkey is number one in almost all of these factors, it should be the common communicative language among Turkic speakers. When taught consciously in a classroom environment, the similarities and
In light of energy market upheavals expected as a result of the up-coming European free trade market, impacts on existing Italian energy legislation, currently hinging on the monopolistic activities of ENEL, (Italian National Electricity Board) are examined. The various aspects dealt with include: legal implications of the integration, under monopolistic and deregulated national energy market scenarios, of new legislation, on the production and distribution of renewable energy sources, with existing energy legislation; the combined effects of strong competition in a new international energy market and energy supply vulnerability due strong dependence on OPEC supplied petroleum; Italian regional economic unbalance due to the possible introduction, in a deregulated European electric power market, of a common carrier system of electric power distribution, that due to Italy's particular geography is expected to be controlled by a firm locatednear the northern border; power pooling legislation and rate structure transparency in a deregulated energy market
Giacomo Ciocca, PsyD, PhD
Conclusions: The Italian validation of the HS revealed the use of this self‐report test to have good psychometric properties. This study offers a new tool to assess homophobia. In this regard, the HS can be introduced into the clinical praxis and into programs for the prevention of homophobic behavior. Ciocca G, Capuano N, Tuziak B, Mollaioli D, Limoncin E, Valsecchi D, Carosa E, Gravina GL, Gianfrilli D, Lenzi A, and Jannini EA. Italian validation of Homophobia Scale (HS. Sex Med 2015;3:213–218.
Giordani, Barbara; Amato, Annalisa; Majo, Fabio; Ferrari, Gianluca; Quattrucci, Serena; Minicucci, Laura; Padoan, Rita; Floridia, Giovanna; Puppo Fornaro, Gianna; Taruscio, Domenica; Salvatore, Marco
centre refer only to 2014. The present Report has been organized into 10 sections. 1. Demography - number of Italian patients with cystic fibrosis (CF) in 2014 was 4,981 and their median age was 20.4 years; estimated 2014 CF prevalence was 8.2/100,000 residents in Italy; on average, 52.1% of the patients were male and CF distribution showed higher frequency in patients aged from 7 to 35 years. On average, 53.7% of CF patients are aged more than 18 years. 2. Diagnoses - most of the CF patients were diagnosed before two years of age (around 66%); a significant proportion of patients (on average, 12%) was diagnosed in adult age. 3. New diagnoses - new diagnoses were 187 in 2011, 200 in 2012, 160 in 2013, and 135 in 2014. Estimated incidence was 1/4,052 live births in 2011; 1/4,313 in 2012; 1/5,189 in 2013 and 1/8,243 in 2014. 4. Genetics - 99.5% of patients was studied at the molecular level, with identification of 90.1% of Cystic Fibrosis Transmembrane Regulator CFTR mutations; [delta]508F was the most frequent mutation (44.8% in 2014). 5. Lung function - FEV₁ (Forced Expiratory Volume in the first second) scores progressively decreased shortly before the start of adult age, in accordance with the natural history of the disease. Most of the patients between 6 and 17 years of age reported a FEV₁ % ≥ 70% of the predicted value, while the proportion of patients with severe lung disease (FEV₁ % <40% of the predicted value) is <2% over the period 2011-2014. 6. Nutrition - most critical periods come out during the first 6 months of life and during adolescence. Prevalence of malnourished male aged 12-17 years decreases over the period 2011-2014; an increasing percentage of patient (both male and female) with a suboptimal body mass index value is observed among patients aged more than 18 years 7. Complications - the presence of missing data represents an obstacle in the correct evaluation of prevalence value of complications related to Italian patients within ICFR
Full Text Available The p value misconceptions are based on certain beliefs and attributions about the significance of the results. Thus, they affect the professionals’ decisions and jeopardize the quality of interventions and the accumulation of valid scientific knowledge. We conducted a survey on 164 academic psychologists (134 Italians, 30 Chileans, questioned on this topic. Our findings are consistent with original research and suggest that some participants do not know how to correctly interpret p values. The inverse probability fallacy presents the greatest comprehension problems, followed by the replication fallacy. These results highlight the importance of the statistical re-education of researchers. Recommendations for improving statistical cognition are proposed.
Ermini, Barbara; Santolini, Raffaella
City’s core and suburbans tax differentials can affect sprawl within an urban area. We empirically address this issue by analyzing the pattern of growth of 72 Italian urbanized areas. As a novelty, we investigate the causes of the emerging land development pattern. Our results show that density of urban area declines in response to an increase in the city’s core property tax rate. We find that this effect is due to changes in dwelling size. By contrast, density of urban area significantly ris...
Portaluri, Maurizio; Latini, Giuseppe; Gennaro, Valerio; Gentilini, Patrizia; Di Ciaula, Agostino
Epidemiological data should support policy makers in their decisions. Misjudgments in data interpretation can justify the preservation of the existing situation and the lack of decision about health and environment safeguard. In the SENTIERI study on Italian polluted sites, women mortality results significantly lower than the regional mean in 11 sites in 44. The authors of this paper think that these data depend on the different impact of pollution on the population of a site, as witnessed by the cases of Brindisi and Manfredonia (Southern Italy). It is now necessary to conduct studies at suburban level integrating mortality data with other available health data.
... 9 Animals and Animal Products 2 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Italian sausage products. 319.145... INSPECTION AND CERTIFICATION DEFINITIONS AND STANDARDS OF IDENTITY OR COMPOSITION Sausage Generally: Fresh Sausage § 319.145 Italian sausage products. (a) Italian sausage products are cured or uncured sausages...
.... Yet, Italian Americans have persevered with hope and hard work to reach for the American dream and... Part V The President Proclamation 8585--Italian American Heritage and Culture Month, 2010 #0; #0... of October 14, 2010 Italian American Heritage and Culture Month, 2010 By the President of the United...
Gwilliams, L; Marantz, A
Although the significance of morphological structure is established in visual word processing, its role in auditory processing remains unclear. Using magnetoencephalography we probe the significance of the root morpheme for spoken Arabic words with two experimental manipulations. First we compare a model of auditory processing that calculates probable lexical outcomes based on whole-word competitors, versus a model that only considers the root as relevant to lexical identification. Second, we assess violations to the root-specific Obligatory Contour Principle (OCP), which disallows root-initial consonant gemination. Our results show root prediction to significantly correlate with neural activity in superior temporal regions, independent of predictions based on whole-word competitors. Furthermore, words that violated the OCP constraint were significantly easier to dismiss as valid words than probability-matched counterparts. The findings suggest that lexical auditory processing is dependent upon morphological structure, and that the root forms a principal unit through which spoken words are recognised. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Calugi, Simona; Milanese, Chiara; Sartirana, Massimiliano; El Ghoch, Marwan; Sartori, Federica; Geccherle, Eleonora; Coppini, Andrea; Franchini, Cecilia; Dalle Grave, Riccardo
To examine the validity and reliability of a new Italian language version of the latest edition of the Eating Disorder Examination Questionnaire (EDE-Q 6.0). The sixth edition of the EDE-Q was translated into Italian and administered to 264 Italian-speaking inpatient and outpatient (257 females in their mid-20s) with eating disorder (75.4% anorexia nervosa) and 216 controls (205 females). Internal consistency was high for both the global EDE-Q and all subscale scores. Test-retest reliability was good to excellent (0.66-0.83) for global and subscale scores, and for items assessing key behavioral features of eating disorders (0.55-0.91). Patients with an eating disorder displayed significantly higher EDE-Q scores than controls, demonstrating the good criterion validity of the tool. Confirmatory factor analysis revealed a good fit for a modified seven-item three-factor structure. The study showed the good psychometric properties of the new Italian version of the EDE-Q 6.0, and validated its use in Italian eating disorder patients, particularly in young females with anorexia nervosa.
Calugi, Simona; Sartirana, Massimiliano; Milanese, Chiara; El Ghoch, Marwan; Riolfi, Federica; Dalle Grave, Riccardo
The Clinical Impairment Assessment (CIA) is a measure of functional impairment secondary to eating disorder symptoms. The aim of this study was to examine the psychometric proprieties of the Italian-language version of the CIA. The tool was translated into Italian and administered to 259 Italian-speaking in- and outpatients with eating disorders and 102 healthy controls. The clinical group also completed the Eating Disorder Examination Questionnaire (EDE-Q) and the Brief Symptom Inventory (BSI). Confirmatory factor analysis revealed a good fit for the original three-factor structure. Internal consistency was high for both the global CIA and all subscale scores, and test-retest reliability was acceptable. The high correlation between CIA and EDE-Q and BSI confirmed the convergent validity of the instrument. T test indicated higher raw scores on CIA in patients with eating disorders than healthy controls, and a cut-off score of 16 on the CIA discriminated between eating disorder and general psychopathology scores. Finally, global CIA and subscale scores were significantly higher in patients who reported objective bulimic episodes, purging behaviours, and excessive exercising than in those who did not; in underweight than in not-underweight patients, and in inpatients than outpatients, confirming the good known-groups validity of the tool. Overall, the study showed the good psychometric properties of the Italian version of the CIA, and validated its use in Italian-speaking eating disorder patients. Level V, Descriptive study.
Full Text Available Background: After WW2 Italy experienced a huge internal migration from the south to the northern Italian regions. More than two million individuals moved up north, and the majority of them settled down permanently. How were southern internal migrants integrated into northern Italian society? Despite the theoretical and substantial relevance of the topic, there has been little systematic research on it. Objective: This work studies the assimilation of this migration flux from a long-term perspective, comparing the school outcomes of the children of southern migrants to those of both northerners' children and children of southern families who did not move. Methods: To this aim, logit models of three different school transitions are applied to data from the Italian Longitudinal Household Survey (ILHS, a retrospective panel survey that includes detailed life-course information on a representative sample of roughly 11,000 Italians. Results: There is no difference between the educational performance of both generation 2 and the mix generation and that of the northerners. However, strong and significant disadvantages were found with regard to generation 1.5, due to the disruption in individual school experience caused by the migration itself. Conclusions: The Italian educational system played an important role in facilitating the integration of the second generation of Southern immigrants, but it was less able to assimilate those who had already begun their studies in the south before following their parents to the north.
Kovelman, Ioulia; Norton, Elizabeth S; Christodoulou, Joanna A; Gaab, Nadine; Lieberman, Daniel A; Triantafyllou, Christina; Wolf, Maryanne; Whitfield-Gabrieli, Susan; Gabrieli, John D E
Phonological awareness, knowledge that speech is composed of syllables and phonemes, is critical for learning to read. Phonological awareness precedes and predicts successful transition from language to literacy, and weakness in phonological awareness is a leading cause of dyslexia, but the brain basis of phonological awareness for spoken language in children is unknown. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging to identify the neural correlates of phonological awareness using an auditory word-rhyming task in children who were typical readers or who had dyslexia (ages 7-13) and a younger group of kindergarteners (ages 5-6). Typically developing children, but not children with dyslexia, recruited left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) when making explicit phonological judgments. Kindergarteners, who were matched to the older children with dyslexia on standardized tests of phonological awareness, also recruited left DLPFC. Left DLPFC may play a critical role in the development of phonological awareness for spoken language critical for reading and in the etiology of dyslexia.
Nielsen, Hans Frede
of English orthography in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries spelling conventions often came to serve as guidelines for proper pronunciation, a notion that was rejected, however, by elocutionists before and just after 1800. It was only with the introduction of compulsory education in the latter half...... of the nineteenth century and with the establishment of the "great public boarding-schools" in particular, that a non-localized spoken standard based on educated southern speech came into being. "Public School English" had become a class dialect, and under the name of "Received Pronunciation" (a term devised......The beginnings of a spoken standard in England go back to late Middle English and early Modern English times, where southern speech and especially the idiom of the Court, London and the Home Counties acquired prestige beyond that of other regional dialects. With the increasing stabilization...
Vornik, Lana A; Sharman, Stefanie J; Garry, Maryanne
We investigated whether the sociolinguistic information delivered by spoken, accented postevent narratives would influence the misinformation effect. New Zealand subjects listened to misleading postevent information spoken in either a New Zealand (NZ) or North American (NA) accent. Consistent with earlier research, we found that NA accents were seen as more powerful and more socially attractive. We found that accents per se had no influence on the misinformation effect but sociolinguistic factors did: both power and social attractiveness affected subjects' susceptibility to misleading postevent suggestions. When subjects rated the speaker highly on power, social attractiveness did not matter; they were equally misled. However, when subjects rated the speaker low on power, social attractiveness did matter: subjects who rated the speaker high on social attractiveness were more misled than subjects who rated it lower. There were similar effects for confidence. These results have implications for our understanding of social influences on the misinformation effect.
Paul, Rhea; Campbell, Daniel; Gilbert, Kimberly; Tsiouri, Ioanna
Preschoolers with severe autism and minimal speech were assigned either a discrete trial or a naturalistic language treatment, and parents of all participants also received parent responsiveness training. After 12 weeks, both groups showed comparable improvement in number of spoken words produced, on average. Approximately half the children in each group achieved benchmarks for the first stage of functional spoken language development, as defined by Tager-Flusberg et al. (J Speech Lang Hear Res, 52: 643-652, 2009). Analyses of moderators of treatment suggest that joint attention moderates response to both treatments, and children with better receptive language pre-treatment do better with the naturalistic method, while those with lower receptive language show better response to the discrete trial treatment. The implications of these findings are discussed.
Vaughn, Charlotte R; Bradlow, Ann R
While indexical information is implicated in many levels of language processing, little is known about the internal structure of the system of indexical dimensions, particularly in bilinguals. A series of three experiments using the speeded classification paradigm investigated the relationship between various indexical and non-linguistic dimensions of speech in processing. Namely, we compared the relationship between a lesser-studied indexical dimension relevant to bilinguals, which language is being spoken (in these experiments, either Mandarin Chinese or English), with: talker identity (Experiment 1), talker gender (Experiment 2), and amplitude of speech (Experiment 3). Results demonstrate that language-being-spoken is integrated in processing with each of the other dimensions tested, and that these processing dependencies seem to be independent of listeners' bilingual status or experience with the languages tested. Moreover, the data reveal processing interference asymmetries, suggesting a processing hierarchy for indexical, non-linguistic speech features.
Full Text Available The aim of the paper is to analyze the Corporate Social Responsibilitys (CSR influence on employees considering the fact that employees are primary stakeholders who directly contribute to the success of the company. CSR relates to employees helps to motivate the employees themselves. Job quality should be a key objective of any employer because the happy employees can create happy customers, which produce good business results. Research clearly indicates, with the help of statistical data and with the case study methodology, that committing to CSR boosts the morale and commitment of workers in a positive way. Employees who are satisfied with the organization s commitment to social and environmental responsibilities demonstrate more commitment, engagement and productivity. A conceptual framework is proposed based on literature. The author predominantly uses methods of qualitative research. In the research the case study methodology, which has been developed within the social sciences, is used. The paper starts with a concise introduction of CSR. In the first part the potential impact of CSR on employees is explained, considering why CSR may represent a special opportunity to positively influence employees’ and prospective employees’ perceptions of companies. In the second part the research considers three Italian companies that have distinguished themselves for their CSR strategy for employees: Luxottica, Brunello Cucinelli and Ferrero. A growing number of studies have been done regarding the benefits of CSR. However, most are concerned with the external view of shareholders and customer perspective. CSR research on the employee level is not well developed now. In order to better understand its effect on the employees, this study explore the impact of employees' perception of CSR on subsequent work attitudes and behaviors. CSR has a significant effect and it could improve employees' attitudes and behaviors, contribute to corporations' success
Kirk, Karen Iler; Prusick, Lindsay; French, Brian; Gotch, Chad; Eisenberg, Laurie S.; Young, Nancy
Under natural conditions, listeners use both auditory and visual speech cues to extract meaning from speech signals containing many sources of variability. However, traditional clinical tests of spoken word recognition routinely employ isolated words or sentences produced by a single talker in an auditory-only presentation format. The more central cognitive processes used during multimodal integration, perceptual normalization and lexical discrimination that may contribute to individual varia...
Maldonado Torres, Sonia Enid
The purpose of this study was to explore the relationships between Latino students' learning styles and their language spoken at home. Results of the study indicated that students who spoke Spanish at home had higher means in the Active Experimentation modality of learning (M = 31.38, SD = 5.70) than students who spoke English (M = 28.08,…
Mst. Moriam, Quadir
This study discusses motivation and strategy use of university students to learn spoken English in Bangladesh. A group of 355 (187 males and 168 females) university students participated in this investigation. To measure learners' degree of motivation a modified version of questionnaire used by Schmidt et al. (1996) was administered. Participants reported their strategy use on a modified version of SILL, the Strategy Inventory for Language Learning, version 7.0 (Oxford, 1990). In order to fin...
Eisenberg, Laurie S; Fisher, Laurel M; Johnson, Karen C; Ganguly, Dianne Hammes; Grace, Thelma; Niparko, John K
We investigated associations between sentence recognition and spoken language for children with cochlear implants (CI) enrolled in the Childhood Development after Cochlear Implantation (CDaCI) study. In a prospective longitudinal study, sentence recognition percent-correct scores and language standard scores were correlated at 48-, 60-, and 72-months post-CI activation. Six tertiary CI centers in the United States. Children with CIs participating in the CDaCI study. Cochlear implantation. Sentence recognition was assessed using the Hearing In Noise Test for Children (HINT-C) in quiet and at +10, +5, and 0 dB signal-to-noise ratio (S/N). Spoken language was assessed using the Clinical Assessment of Spoken Language (CASL) core composite and the antonyms, paragraph comprehension (syntax comprehension), syntax construction (expression), and pragmatic judgment tests. Positive linear relationships were found between CASL scores and HINT-C sentence scores when the sentences were delivered in quiet and at +10 and +5 dB S/N, but not at 0 dB S/N. At 48 months post-CI, sentence scores at +10 and +5 dB S/N were most strongly associated with CASL antonyms. At 60 and 72 months, sentence recognition in noise was most strongly associated with paragraph comprehension and syntax construction. Children with CIs learn spoken language in a variety of acoustic environments. Despite the observed inconsistent performance in different listening situations and noise-challenged environments, many children with CIs are able to build lexicons and learn the rules of grammar that enable recognition of sentences.
S. Shantha; S. Mekala
The mastery of speaking skills in English has become a major requisite in engineering industry. Engineers are expected to possess speaking skills for executing their routine activities and career prospects. The article focuses on the experimental study conducted to improve English spoken proficiency of Indian engineering students using task-based approach. Tasks are activities that concentrates on the learners in providing the main context and focus for learning. Therefore, a task facilitates...
Brouwer, S.; Mitterer, H.; Huettig, F.
In two eye-tracking experiments we examined whether wider discourse information helps the recognition of reduced pronunciations (e.g., 'puter') more than the recognition of canonical pronunciations of spoken words (e.g., 'computer'). Dutch participants listened to sentences from a casual speech corpus containing canonical and reduced target words. Target word recognition was assessed by measuring eye fixation proportions to four printed words on a visual display: the target, a "reduced form" ...
Harris, Michael S; Kronenberger, William G; Gao, Sujuan; Hoen, Helena M; Miyamoto, Richard T; Pisoni, David B
Cochlear implants (CIs) help many deaf children achieve near-normal speech and language (S/L) milestones. Nevertheless, high levels of unexplained variability in S/L outcomes are limiting factors in improving the effectiveness of CIs in deaf children. The objective of this study was to longitudinally assess the role of verbal short-term memory (STM) and working memory (WM) capacity as a progress-limiting source of variability in S/L outcomes after CI in children. Longitudinal study of 66 children with CIs for prelingual severe-to-profound hearing loss. Outcome measures included performance on digit span forward (DSF), digit span backward (DSB), and four conventional S/L measures that examined spoken-word recognition (Phonetically Balanced Kindergarten word test), receptive vocabulary (Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test ), sentence-recognition skills (Hearing in Noise Test), and receptive and expressive language functioning (Clinical Evaluation of Language Fundamentals Fourth Edition Core Language Score; CELF). Growth curves for DSF and DSB in the CI sample over time were comparable in slope, but consistently lagged in magnitude relative to norms for normal-hearing peers of the same age. For DSF and DSB, 50.5% and 44.0%, respectively, of the CI sample scored more than 1 SD below the normative mean for raw scores across all ages. The first (baseline) DSF score significantly predicted all endpoint scores for the four S/L measures, and DSF slope (growth) over time predicted CELF scores. DSF baseline and slope accounted for an additional 13 to 31% of variance in S/L scores after controlling for conventional predictor variables such as: chronological age at time of testing, age at time of implantation, communication mode (auditory-oral communication versus total communication), and maternal education. Only DSB baseline scores predicted endpoint language scores on Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test and CELF. DSB slopes were not significantly related to any endpoint S/L measures
Richard F. Young
Full Text Available In this article I present the theory of interactional competence and contrast it with alternative ways of describing a learner’s knowledge of language. The focus of interactional competence is the structure of recurring episodes of face-to-face interaction, episodes that are of social and cultural significance to a community of speakers. Such episodes I call discursive practices, and I argue that participants co-construct a discursive practice through an architecture of interactional resources that is specific to the practice. The resources include rhetorical script, the register of the practice, the turn-taking system, management of topics, the participation framework, and means for signalling boundaries and transitions. I exemplify the theory of interactional competence and the architecture of discursive practice by examining two instances of the same practice: office hours between teaching assistants and undergraduate students at an American university, one in Mathematics, one in Italian as a foreign language. By a close comparison of the interactional resources that participants bring to the two instances, I argue that knowledge and interactional skill are local and practice-specific, and that the joint construction of discursive practice involves participants making use of the resources that they have acquired in previous instances of the same practice.
It is common belief that competition in the Italian retail gasoline activities is hindered by oil companies' collusive behaviour. However, when developing a broader analysis of the sector, low efficiency and scarce competition could results as the consequences coming from an inadequate distribution network and from the recognition of international markets and focal point [it
Sulpizio, Simone; Arduino, Lisa S.; Paizi, Despina; Burani, Cristina
In 4 naming experiments we investigated how Italian readers assign stress to pseudowords. We assessed whether participants assign stress following distributional information such as stress neighborhood (the proportion and number of existent words sharing orthographic ending and stress pattern) and whether such distributional information affects…
Jul 1, 2015 ... legislation (min 25 g/100 g). The Italian salamis made of lamb and enriched with pequi presented higher protein contents than the salamis made of Santa Inês lamb produced by Lima (2009). (34.87 g/100 g) and Lappe (2004) (30.83 to 32.50 g/100 g). Regarding the humidity content, the results agree with.
Paizi, Despina; Zoccolotti, Pierluigi; Burani, Cristina
Stress assignment to Italian polysyllabic words is unpredictable, because stress is neither marked nor predicted by rule. Stress assignment, especially to low frequency words, has been reported to be a function of stress dominance and stress neighbourhood. Two experiments investigate stress assignment in sixth-grade, skilled and dyslexic, readers.…
did not return, believed to have been killed (Al-Barbar 236). The situation could not be sustained. British-Sanusi War (1915). In 1914 Italy entered the war on the side of the Entente, the. Ottoman Empire and its German allies saw the Ottoman troops in Libya to spark a revolt against the British, French and. Italian, thereby the ...
Username, Password, Remember me, or Register. Introduzione / Introduction. G Guzzetta. Abstract. Identità Italiane In Movimento. Full Text: EMAIL FREE FULL TEXT EMAIL FREE FULL TEXT · DOWNLOAD FULL TEXT DOWNLOAD FULL TEXT · http://dx.doi.org/10.4314/issa.v21i1-2.43947 · AJOL African Journals Online.
Villiers et al., 1993). Table 1 Number of ewes and lambs used, supplement consumed by lambs, average daily gain (ADG), weaning weight of lambs and pasture height of Italian ryegrass during two seasons. Treatments. Control (no creep feed) Forward creep. Amount supplemented (g/day). 100. 250. Ad lib. Season 1:.
Italian Studies in Southern Africa/Studi d'Italianistica nell'Africa Australe. Journal Home · ABOUT THIS JOURNAL · Advanced Search · Current Issue · Archives · Journal Home > Vol 9, No 2 (1996) >. Log in or Register to get access to full text downloads.
Dello Vicario, E.; Petaccia, A.; Savanella, V.
In the present note the characteristics of the Italian dams are examined, underlining, in a statistical view, story, geographical location, types and use of the most important works. Such a review can be useful for a more detailed analysis, both for the dams characterization and for further studies relevant to water resources utilization [it
Aims of our study are to investigate: (1 the association of FTO gene SNPs rs9939609 and rs9930506 with body mass index (BMI and obesity-related parameters in a large cohort (n=752 of Italian obese subjects; (2 the association between the two FTO SNPs and age of onset of obesity. Our results demonstrate a strong association between FTO SNPs rs9939609 (P<0.043 and rs9930506 (P<0.029 with BMI in the Italian population. FTO rs9930506 was significantly associated with higher BMI in a G allele dose-dependent manner (BMI+1.4 kg/m2 per G allele. We also observed that the association with BMI of the two FTO variants varied with age, with the carriers of the risk alleles developing an increase in body weight earlier in life. In conclusion, our study further demonstrates a role of the genetic variability in FTO on BMI in a large Italian population.
Full Text Available Italian and Russian Verse: Two Cultures and Two Mentalities The present text was given as a talk at Stanford University in 2003. Here the author presents a comparative analysis of Russian and Italian versification and pays attention to the cultural contacts between these two poetical traditions in an effort to define the role played by Italian patterns in Russian verse. In this perspective the author offers a history of Russian poetical translation of Italian texts pointing out the different opinions of Russian poets about the “musicality” of Italian verse. The combined influence of language and culture in modelling different Russian poetical forms in a chronological perspective is underlined.
Full Text Available The shareholders can not directly manage the business but they have powers of pulse and control by voting right that is essential for the correct functioning of the company. In 1942 the Italian legislature, although with some exceptions, adopted One share – One vote rule. The legal framework changed significantly after the enactment of corporate law reform in 2003. The objective of this research is to examine the status of the principle of correlation between management power and risk in the context of the regulatory framework of Italian public companies, as it emerged after the enactment of above mentioned corporate law reform in 2003.
Janse, Esther; Jesse, Alexandra
Many older listeners report difficulties in understanding speech in noisy situations. Working memory and other cognitive skills may modulate older listeners' ability to use context information to alleviate the effects of noise on spoken-word recognition. In the present study, we investigated whether verbal working memory predicts older adults' ability to immediately use context information in the recognition of words embedded in sentences, presented in different listening conditions. In a phoneme-monitoring task, older adults were asked to detect as fast and as accurately as possible target phonemes in sentences spoken by a target speaker. Target speech was presented without noise, with fluctuating speech-shaped noise, or with competing speech from a single distractor speaker. The gradient measure of contextual probability (derived from a separate offline rating study) affected the speed of recognition. Contextual facilitation was modulated by older listeners' verbal working memory (measured with a backward digit span task) and age across listening conditions. Working memory and age, as well as hearing loss, were also the most consistent predictors of overall listening performance. Older listeners' immediate benefit from context in spoken-word recognition thus relates to their ability to keep and update a semantic representation of the sentence content in working memory.
Zamuner, Tania S; Moore, Charlotte; Desmeules-Trudel, Félix
To understand speech, listeners need to be able to decode the speech stream into meaningful units. However, coarticulation causes phonemes to differ based on their context. Because coarticulation is an ever-present component of the speech stream, it follows that listeners may exploit this source of information for cues to the identity of the words being spoken. This research investigates the development of listeners' sensitivity to coarticulation cues below the level of the phoneme in spoken word recognition. Using a looking-while-listening paradigm, adults and 2- and 3-year-old children were tested on coarticulation cues that either matched or mismatched the target. Both adults and children predicted upcoming phonemes based on anticipatory coarticulation to make decisions about word identity. The overall results demonstrate that coarticulation cues are a fundamental component of children's spoken word recognition system. However, children did not show the same resolution as adults of the mismatching coarticulation cues and competitor inhibition, indicating that children's processing systems are still developing. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Huang, Xianjun; Yang, Jin-Chen; Zhang, Qin; Guo, Chunyan
In the present study, two experiments were carried out to investigate the time course of spoken word recognition in Mandarin Chinese using both event-related potentials (ERPs) and behavioral measures. To address the hypothesis that there is an early phonological processing stage independent of semantics during spoken word recognition, a unimodal word-matching paradigm was employed, in which both prime and target words were presented auditorily. Experiment 1 manipulated the phonological relations between disyllabic primes and targets, and found an enhanced P2 (200-270 ms post-target onset) as well as a smaller early N400 to word-initial phonological mismatches over fronto-central scalp sites. Experiment 2 manipulated both phonological and semantic relations between monosyllabic primes and targets, and replicated the phonological mismatch-associated P2, which was not modulated by semantic relations. Overall, these results suggest that P2 is a sensitive electrophysiological index of early phonological processing independent of semantics in Mandarin Chinese spoken word recognition. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Juan Manuel Montero
Full Text Available We describe the work on infusion of emotion into a limited-task autonomous spoken conversational agent situated in the domestic environment, using a need-inspired task-independent emotion model (NEMO. In order to demonstrate the generation of affect through the use of the model, we describe the work of integrating it with a natural-language mixed-initiative HiFi-control spoken conversational agent (SCA. NEMO and the host system communicate externally, removing the need for the Dialog Manager to be modified, as is done in most existing dialog systems, in order to be adaptive. The first part of the paper concerns the integration between NEMO and the host agent. The second part summarizes the work on automatic affect prediction, namely, frustration and contentment, from dialog features, a non-conventional source, in the attempt of moving towards a more user-centric approach. The final part reports the evaluation results obtained from a user study, in which both versions of the agent (non-adaptive and emotionally-adaptive were compared. The results provide substantial evidences with respect to the benefits of adding emotion in a spoken conversational agent, especially in mitigating users’ frustrations and, ultimately, improving their satisfaction.
Lutfi, Syaheerah Lebai; Fernández-Martínez, Fernando; Lorenzo-Trueba, Jaime; Barra-Chicote, Roberto; Montero, Juan Manuel
We describe the work on infusion of emotion into a limited-task autonomous spoken conversational agent situated in the domestic environment, using a need-inspired task-independent emotion model (NEMO). In order to demonstrate the generation of affect through the use of the model, we describe the work of integrating it with a natural-language mixed-initiative HiFi-control spoken conversational agent (SCA). NEMO and the host system communicate externally, removing the need for the Dialog Manager to be modified, as is done in most existing dialog systems, in order to be adaptive. The first part of the paper concerns the integration between NEMO and the host agent. The second part summarizes the work on automatic affect prediction, namely, frustration and contentment, from dialog features, a non-conventional source, in the attempt of moving towards a more user-centric approach. The final part reports the evaluation results obtained from a user study, in which both versions of the agent (non-adaptive and emotionally-adaptive) were compared. The results provide substantial evidences with respect to the benefits of adding emotion in a spoken conversational agent, especially in mitigating users' frustrations and, ultimately, improving their satisfaction.
Shen, Wei; Qu, Qingqing; Ni, Aiping; Zhou, Junyi; Li, Xingshan
We investigated the time course of morphological processing during spoken word recognition using the printed-word paradigm. Chinese participants were asked to listen to a spoken disyllabic compound word while simultaneously viewing a printed-word display. Each visual display consisted of three printed words: a semantic associate of the first constituent of the compound word (morphemic competitor), a semantic associate of the whole compound word (whole-word competitor), and an unrelated word (distractor). Participants were directed to detect whether the spoken target word was on the visual display. Results indicated that both the morphemic and whole-word competitors attracted more fixations than the distractor. More importantly, the morphemic competitor began to diverge from the distractor immediately at the acoustic offset of the first constituent, which was earlier than the whole-word competitor. These results suggest that lexical access to the auditory word is incremental and morphological processing (i.e., semantic access to the first constituent) that occurs at an early processing stage before access to the representation of the whole word in Chinese.
Goh, Winston D; Yap, Melvin J; Lau, Mabel C; Ng, Melvin M R; Tan, Luuan-Chin
A large number of studies have demonstrated that semantic richness dimensions [e.g., number of features, semantic neighborhood density, semantic diversity , concreteness, emotional valence] influence word recognition processes. Some of these richness effects appear to be task-general, while others have been found to vary across tasks. Importantly, almost all of these findings have been found in the visual word recognition literature. To address this gap, we examined the extent to which these semantic richness effects are also found in spoken word recognition, using a megastudy approach that allows for an examination of the relative contribution of the various semantic properties to performance in two tasks: lexical decision, and semantic categorization. The results show that concreteness, valence, and number of features accounted for unique variance in latencies across both tasks in a similar direction-faster responses for spoken words that were concrete, emotionally valenced, and with a high number of features-while arousal, semantic neighborhood density, and semantic diversity did not influence latencies. Implications for spoken word recognition processes are discussed.
Jones, -A C; Toscano, E; Botting, N; Marshall, C-R; Atkinson, J R; Denmark, T; Herman, -R; Morgan, G
Previous research has highlighted that deaf children acquiring spoken English have difficulties in narrative development relative to their hearing peers both in terms of macro-structure and with micro-structural devices. The majority of previous research focused on narrative tasks designed for hearing children that depend on good receptive language skills. The current study compared narratives of 6 to 11-year-old deaf children who use spoken English (N=59) with matched for age and non-verbal intelligence hearing peers. To examine the role of general language abilities, single word vocabulary was also assessed. Narratives were elicited by the retelling of a story presented non-verbally in video format. Results showed that deaf and hearing children had equivalent macro-structure skills, but the deaf group showed poorer performance on micro-structural components. Furthermore, the deaf group gave less detailed responses to inferencing probe questions indicating poorer understanding of the story's underlying message. For deaf children, micro-level devices most strongly correlated with the vocabulary measure. These findings suggest that deaf children, despite spoken language delays, are able to convey the main elements of content and structure in narrative but have greater difficulty in using grammatical devices more dependent on finer linguistic and pragmatic skills. Crown Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Johan Frijns; prof. Dr. Louis Peeraer; van Wieringen; Ingeborg Dhooge; Vermeulen; Jan Brokx; Tinne Boons; Wouters
Objectives: Although deaf children with cochlear implants (CIs) are able to develop good language skills, the large variability in outcomes remains a significant concern. The first aim of this study was to evaluate language skills in children with CIs to establish benchmarks. The second aim was to
Strand, Julia F; Sommers, Mitchell S
Much research has explored how spoken word recognition is influenced by the architecture and dynamics of the mental lexicon (e.g., Luce and Pisoni, 1998; McClelland and Elman, 1986). A more recent question is whether the processes underlying word recognition are unique to the auditory domain, or whether visually perceived (lipread) speech may also be sensitive to the structure of the mental lexicon (Auer, 2002; Mattys, Bernstein, and Auer, 2002). The current research was designed to test the hypothesis that both aurally and visually perceived spoken words are isolated in the mental lexicon as a function of their modality-specific perceptual similarity to other words. Lexical competition (the extent to which perceptually similar words influence recognition of a stimulus word) was quantified using metrics that are well-established in the literature, as well as a statistical method for calculating perceptual confusability based on the phi-square statistic. Both auditory and visual spoken word recognition were influenced by modality-specific lexical competition as well as stimulus word frequency. These findings extend the scope of activation-competition models of spoken word recognition and reinforce the hypothesis (Auer, 2002; Mattys et al., 2002) that perceptual and cognitive properties underlying spoken word recognition are not specific to the auditory domain. In addition, the results support the use of the phi-square statistic as a better predictor of lexical competition than metrics currently used in models of spoken word recognition. © 2011 Acoustical Society of America
Ingordo, V; Naldi, L; Colecchia, B; Licci, N
Pityriasis versicolor is a superficial fungal disease with a world-wide distribution, but there are few available studies on its prevalence in the general population. To assess the prevalence of pityriasis versicolor in a representative sample of young Italian sailors, evaluating the influence of habits and risk factors in the affected individuals. Young cadets (n = 1024: 975 men and 49 women, mean age 22 years) of the Italian Navy Petty Officers' School in Taranto were consecutively examined by the same observer. The diagnosis of pityriasis versicolor was based on clinical picture and/or Wood's lamp examination. All the subjects filled in a questionnaire about sport practice, swimming pool attendance, marching, presence of hyperhidrosis and a positive clinical history of pityriasis versicolor in the past. The affected individuals were also asked if they were aware of their skin lesions. Differences between answers of affected and unaffected subjects were tested by Fisher's exact P-value test, and odds ratios were calculated. Pityriasis versicolor was diagnosed in 22 subjects (2.1%), all men, of whom 15 (68%) were not aware of their condition. No statistical association was found between active pityriasis versicolor and sport practice, swimming pool attendance, marching or presence of hyperhidrosis. A significant association [odds ratio 8.7 (95% confidence interval 3.3-21.5); Fisher's exact P-value test P pityriasis versicolor and a previous clinical history of pityriasis versicolor. The prevalence of pityriasis versicolor in this sample of young Italian sailors was not high, in agreement with the available surveys performed in the general population in temperate climates. Many affected subjects were not aware of their condition. The only important factor associated with pityriasis versicolor was a previous history of pityriasis versicolor. This observation could confirm the hypothesis that constitutional factors, e.g. seborrhoea and chemical constitution of sebum
Suskind, Dana L; Graf, Eileen; Leffel, Kristin R; Hernandez, Marc W; Suskind, Elizabeth; Webber, Robert; Tannenbaum, Sally; Nevins, Mary Ellen
To investigate the impact of a spoken language intervention curriculum aiming to improve the language environments caregivers of low socioeconomic status (SES) provide for their D/HH children with CI & HA to support children's spoken language development. Quasiexperimental. Tertiary. Thirty-two caregiver-child dyads of low-SES (as defined by caregiver education ≤ MA/MS and the income proxies = Medicaid or WIC/LINK) and children aged curriculum designed to improve D/HH children's early language environments. Changes in caregiver knowledge of child language development (questionnaire scores) and language behavior (word types, word tokens, utterances, mean length of utterance [MLU], LENA Adult Word Count (AWC), Conversational Turn Count (CTC)). Significant increases in caregiver questionnaire scores as well as utterances, word types, word tokens, and MLU in the treatment but not the control group. No significant changes in LENA outcomes. Results partially support the notion that caregiver-directed language enrichment interventions can change home language environments of D/HH children from low-SES backgrounds. Further longitudinal studies are necessary.
I Made Suyasa
Full Text Available This study explored the bakayat spoken-text tradition of the Sasak people in Lombok. The tradition was used as media for preaching on Islamic day, customs and ceremonies, as well as appreciating the folk literature. Malay literary texts that contained religious values were articulated continuously in various social discourses by the community that owned this tradition. The impact of the globalization and the inclusion of various Islamic doctrines in Lombok have threatened the existence of the bakayat tradition and now most Sasak people especially the younger ones are not interested in this tradition. The background explained above has become the main reason why this study was conducted. Moreover, there were still a few studies which had investigated the bakayat tradition in-depth. This present study was focused on the history, structure, function, meaning, and articulation of the religious values and social discourse of the bakayat tradition bySasak people. This research used the descriptive analytical method. The data were analyzed using the interpretive qualitative method. The theories used in this study were the theory narratology proposed by Gerard Genette (1986, the theory of articulation proposed by Stuart Hall (1986, the theory of functions, and the theory of semiotics. The results of this study showed that the historical development ofthe Sasakbakayat tradition was characterized by the emergence of Islam in Lombok. It significantly contributed to the existence of bakayat. It was followed by the Islamic Malay literature which was used as the reading material in the bakayat tradition and the media for learning Islam. The historical development of the bakayat Sasak was explained in various aspects such as religious, cultural, political, and social aspects. The structure of the bakayat text was a form of the articulation in spoken style which involved the characteristics of the
Pezzella, Francesca Romana; Picconi, Orietta; De Luca, Assunta; Lyden, Patrick D; Fiorelli, Marco
The National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale (NIHSS) is a basic component of the assessment of patients with acute stroke. To foster and standardize the use of the NIHSS among Italian health professionals, we translated the scale, dubbed into Italian the training and test videotapes devised by the National Institutes of Health researchers, and conducted a series of certification courses using the translated videos. Translation, text adaptation, video dubbing, and editing of the Italian NIHSS videotapes relied on a team of bilingual stroke neurologists. Three waves of training courses were organized for mixed classes of medical and nonmedical health professionals. The certification test was based on the usual set of 5 videotaped patients. Scoring rules were those provided by the National Institutes of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. Reliability of the Italian NIHSS was assessed using kappa statistics and compared with that of the original NIHSS. During 3 years, 850 nurses, 460 nonneurologist physicians, and 246 neurologists were trained. Pass rates were respectively 44%, 75%, and 87%, respectively. Overall, 80% of scale items showed moderate to excellent reliability. Independent significant predictors of test failure at multivariate logistic regression were nurse profession (OR, 5.41; 95% CI, 4.07 to 7.20), older age (OR, 1.03; 95% CI, 1.02 to 1.05), and first edition of the course (OR, 3.13; 95% CI, 2.43 to 4.05). The agreement across all items between NIHSS and the Italian NIHSS was 80% (kappa=0.70+/-0.18, z<0.001). The Italian translation, supervised by experienced vascular neurologists, did not influence the clinimetric characteristics of the NIHSS. Our findings support the implementation of NIHSS video training in languages other than English.
Boons, Tinne; Brokx, Jan P L; Dhooge, Ingeborg; Frijns, Johan H M; Peeraer, Louis; Vermeulen, Anneke; Wouters, Jan; van Wieringen, Astrid
Although deaf children with cochlear implants (CIs) are able to develop good language skills, the large variability in outcomes remains a significant concern. The first aim of this study was to evaluate language skills in children with CIs to establish benchmarks. The second aim was to make an estimation of the optimal age at implantation to provide maximal opportunities for the child to achieve good language skills afterward. The third aim was to gain more insight into the causes of variability to set recommendations for optimizing the rehabilitation process of prelingually deaf children with CIs. Receptive and expressive language development of 288 children who received CIs by age five was analyzed in a retrospective multicenter study. Outcome measures were language quotients (LQs) on the Reynell Developmental Language Scales and Schlichting Expressive Language Test at 1, 2, and 3 years after implantation. Independent predictive variables were nine child-related, environmental, and auditory factors. A series of multiple regression analyses determined the amount of variance in expressive and receptive language outcomes attributable to each predictor when controlling for the other variables. Simple linear regressions with age at first fitting and independent samples t tests demonstrated that children implanted before the age of two performed significantly better on all tests than children who were implanted at an older age. The mean LQ was 0.78 with an SD of 0.18. A child with an LQ lower than 0.60 (= 0.78-0.18) within 3 years after implantation was labeled as a weak performer compared with other deaf children implanted before the age of two. Contralateral stimulation with a second CI or a hearing aid and the absence of additional disabilities were related to better language outcomes. The effect of environmental factors, comprising multilingualism, parental involvement, and communication mode increased over time. Three years after implantation, the total multiple
Xue, Gui; Aron, Adam R; Poldrack, Russell A
The inhibition of speech acts is a critical aspect of human executive control over thought and action, but its neural underpinnings are poorly understood. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging and the stop-signal paradigm, we examined the neural correlates of speech control in comparison to manual motor control. Initiation of a verbal response activated left inferior frontal cortex (IFC: Broca's area). Successful inhibition of speech (naming of letters or pseudowords) engaged a region of right IFC (including pars opercularis and anterior insular cortex) as well as presupplementary motor area (pre-SMA); these regions were also activated by successful inhibition of a hand response (i.e., a button press). Moreover, the speed with which subjects inhibited their responses, stop-signal reaction time, was significantly correlated between speech and manual inhibition tasks. These findings suggest a functional dissociation of left and right IFC in initiating versus inhibiting vocal responses, and that manual responses and speech acts share a common inhibitory mechanism localized in the right IFC and pre-SMA.
Zhang, Xujin; Samuel, Arthur G.
The current study investigated how listeners understand English words that have shorter words embedded in them. A series of auditory-auditory priming experiments assessed the activation of six types of embedded words (2 embedded positions × 3 embedded proportions) under different listening conditions. Facilitation of lexical decision responses to targets (e.g., pig) associated with words embedded in primes (e.g., hamster) indexed activation of the embedded words (e.g., ham). When the listening conditions were optimal, isolated embedded words (e.g., ham) primed their targets in all six conditions (Experiment 1a). Within carrier words (e.g., hamster), the same set of embedded words produced priming only when they were at the beginning or comprised a large proportion of the carrier word (Experiment 1b). When the listening conditions were made suboptimal by expanding or compressing the primes, significant priming was found for isolated embedded words (Experiment 2a), but no priming was produced when the carrier words were compressed/expanded (Experiment 2b). Similarly, priming was eliminated when the carrier words were presented with one segment replaced by noise (Experiment 3). When cognitive load was imposed, priming for embedded words was again found when they were presented in isolation (Experiment 4a), but not when they were embedded in the carrier words (Experiment 4b). The results suggest that both embedded position and proportion play important roles in the activation of embedded words, but that such activation only occurs under unusually good listening conditions. PMID:25593407
Vanessa Hagemeyer Burgo
Full Text Available The aim of this work is to analyze the mitigation devices that President Barack Obama employs while speaking, and how they are used for the construction of his positive public image. The theoretical framework of this research is based on the principles of Conversation Analysis, and the transcription of data was carried out according to the conventions suggested by Preti (2003. The corpus is composed of two interviews in which President Obama expresses different points of view about a polemical issue: homosexual marriage. Television interviews make up a significant form of social interaction, since through them one intends to obtain answers, exchange information, experiences and value judgments of the interactants. In this dynamic, dialogues are conducted, in general, between interviewer and interviewee, interviewee and audience, and interviewer and audience. Results show that these resources influence the interviewee’s linguistic attitude, especially when he or she is directly exposed to a wide audience. These are sociointeractional strategies that are drawn up to reduce potential threats to the image that the speaker wants to preserve, to get approval from the listeners, and to ensure the defense of what he or she does not want to see exhibited.
Schreibman, Laura; Stahmer, Aubyn C
Presently there is no consensus on the specific behavioral treatment of choice for targeting language in young nonverbal children with autism. This randomized clinical trial compared the effectiveness of a verbally-based intervention, Pivotal Response Training (PRT) to a pictorially-based behavioral intervention, the Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS) on the acquisition of spoken language by young (2-4 years), nonverbal or minimally verbal (≤9 words) children with autism. Thirty-nine children were randomly assigned to either the PRT or PECS condition. Participants received on average 247 h of intervention across 23 weeks. Dependent measures included overall communication, expressive vocabulary, pictorial communication and parent satisfaction. Children in both intervention groups demonstrated increases in spoken language skills, with no significant difference between the two conditions. Seventy-eight percent of all children exited the program with more than 10 functional words. Parents were very satisfied with both programs but indicated PECS was more difficult to implement.
Farci, Manolo; Rossi, Luca; Boccia Artieri, Giovanni
In this paper, we describe the results of a qualitative study conducted with 120 Italian Facebook users to investigate how Facebook enables people to achieve a mutually constitutive intimacy with their own friendship network: a negotiation of intimacy in public through self-disclosure, where the ...... that both systematizes and extends the findings identified in previous studies of intimacy on Facebook. We describe this framework as networked intimacy and we discuss the consequences of it in the light of already existing research on online self-disclosure.......In this paper, we describe the results of a qualitative study conducted with 120 Italian Facebook users to investigate how Facebook enables people to achieve a mutually constitutive intimacy with their own friendship network: a negotiation of intimacy in public through self-disclosure, where...... the affordances of the platform are useful to elicit significant reactions, validations and demonstrations of affection from others. We observed that, in order to achieve various levels of intimacy on Facebook, people engage in various strategies: Showing rather than telling, Sharing implicit content, Tagging...
Cirillo, Ignazio; Vizzaccaro, Andrea; Tosca, Maria Angela; Milanese, Manlio; Ciprandi, Giorgio
Previous surveys on Italian conscripts showed a low prevalence of allergic rhinitis. This study investigated the prevalence and the treatment of allergic rhinitis in the "conscript model" during a four-year period (1999-2002). 28,327 18-year old males were screened and referred to La Spezia Military Navy Hospital for call-up visit. Detailed history, clinical examination, skin prick test, spirometry, and metacholine challenge were performed in subjects with suspected diagnosis of respiratory allergy. Allergic rhinitis was diagnosed in 2,876 conscripts (10.15%). Most of them showed an association with asthma (67.2%). Prevalence of allergic rhinitis increased five-fold in comparison with a previous survey. Sneezing was the most common nasal symptom. The use of antihistamines and intranasal corticosteroids increased significantly. However, about one third of the rhinitis subjects did not receive any treatment at all. Prevalence of allergic rhinitis in Italian conscripts has increased. Treatment of allergic rhinitis was correctly based on antihistamines and corticosteroids, but many rhinitis subjects remained still untreated.
Full Text Available Active libraries in Italy are around 13.000 and, taken as a whole, the property and management relate mainly to public institutions such as the state, regions, local authorities, cultural institutions, universities, and partly to religious institutions and individuals. In this paper is presented the work of studies and research, commissioned to the authors by the General Direction for Libraries of the Ministry of Heritage and Culture (Mibac, which ended recently, addressing the architectural, energy and environmental refurbishment of national historic libraries distributed on the Italian territory, with special focus on 4 among 46 owned by the Ministry of Culture (the Nazionale Centrale di Roma, the Nazionale Centrale in Florence, the national University of Turin and the Angelica in Rome believed by the authors and client as examples of recurring issues and ideals to lend itself to the construction of a model of intervention replicable on other historical Italian libraries.The main objective of the project is the identification of physical and perceptual factors of wear2, which threaten the conservation of the historical and artistic heritage of the historic center of Venice, with a particular focus on the effects of anthropogenic pressure linked to tourism, and the evaluation of their level of danger. A further objective is the recognition of measurable parameters (indicators for monitoring and, subsequently, mitigation strategies for the most significant phenomena.
We present the Italian contribution to the CSES (China Seismo-Electromagnetic Satellite) mission. The CSES satellite aims at investigating electromagnetic field, plasma and particles in the near-Earth environment in order to study in particular seismic precursors, particles fluxes (from Van Allen belts, cosmic rays, solar wind, etc.), anthropogenic electromagnetic pollution and more in general the atmosphere-ionosphere-magnetosphere coupling mechanisms that can affect the climate changes. The launch of CSES - the first of a series of several satellite missions - is scheduled by the end of 2016. The CSES satellite has been financed by the CNSA (China National Space Agency) and developed by CEA (China Earthquake Administration) together with several Chinese research institutes and private companies such as the DFH (that has developed the CAST2000 satellite platform). Italy participates to the CSES satellite mission with the LIMADOU project funded by ASI (Italian Space Agency) in collaboration with the Universities of Roma Tor Vergata, Uninettuno, Trento, Bologna and Perugia, as well as the INFN (Italian National Institute of Nuclear Physics), INGV (Italian National Institute of Geophysics and Volcanology) and INAF-IAPS (Italian National Institute of Astrophysics and Planetology). Many analyses have shown that satellite observations of electromagnetic fields, plasma parameters and particle fluxes in low Earth orbit may be useful in order to study the existence of electromagnetic emissions associated with the occurrence of earthquakes of medium and high magnitude. Although the earthquakes forecasting is not possible today, it is certainly a major challenge - and perhaps even a duty - for science in the near future. The claims that the reported anomalies (of electromagnetic, plasma and particle parameters) are seismic precursors are still intensely debated and analyses for confirming claimed correlations are still lacking. In fact, ionospheric currents, plasma
The six winners of the Progetto Lauree Scientifiche came to CERN to discover the LHC experiments. Six Italian high-school students visited CERN last week as part of a biennial project sponsored by the Italian Research ministry, the University of Ferrara and INFN. A total of 160 enthusiastic students took part in the project, which aims to introduce and foster interest in higher levels of science and technology. The Progetto Lauree Scientifiche prize was awarded to these students for their excellent grades in an examination covering various areas of physics, including laser, solid and particle physics. The winners spent six days at CERN touring the Laboratory and seeing first-hand the various aspects of research in one of the leading European centres, as well as the excitement of the particle physics adventure.
Bassis, Simone; Esposito, Anna; Morabito, Francesco
This volume collects a selection of contributions which has been presented at the 22nd Italian Workshop on Neural Networks, the yearly meeting of the Italian Society for Neural Networks (SIREN). The conference was held in Italy, Vietri sul Mare (Salerno), during May 17-19, 2012. The annual meeting of SIREN is sponsored by International Neural Network Society (INNS), European Neural Network Society (ENNS) and IEEE Computational Intelligence Society (CIS). The book – as well as the workshop- is organized in three main components, two special sessions and a group of regular sessions featuring different aspects and point of views of artificial neural networks and natural intelligence, also including applications of present compelling interest.
REGIONALI” al quale si rimanda per la completa trattazione e gli approfondimenti. In the article an innovative patchwork model for integration of sub-national SDIs within national SDI is discussed according to the feasability study that the union of Italian Regions carried out in 2013 spring. Multi scale and innovative policies for SDIs management are discussed and essential information of national SDI evolution are explained.
Raffaele Lagravinese; Massimo Paradiso
In Italy, the corruption is a social phenomenon affecting the health sector. In this paper we show that the impact of corruption on Italian health expenditure is positive, along with ageing population, technological change and supply factors inducing demand in pharmaceuticals and hospitalization. Moreover, the empirical analysis shows that corruption affects pharmaceutical expenditure and conventionated private hospital expenditure, suggesting a relation between corruption and the governance ...
Dulla, S.; Panella, B.; Ravetto, P.
The paper illustrates the evolution and the present situation of the university-level nuclear engineering education in Italy. The problems connected with the need of qualified faculty in view of a dramatic increase of students is pointed out. A short description of the programs at present available at Italian universities is also presented, together with some statistics referred to Politecnico di Torino. The mathematical and computation content of each programs is also analyzed. (author)
Full Text Available Are described and illustrated two new Italian species of Ceutorhynchus. The first of them, C. apenninus n. sp. from central Italy, collected on the montane crucifer Isatis allionii P. W. Ball., is close to C. peyerimhoffi Hustache from Spain, Italy and Algeria, also living on Isatis. The second, C. magnanoi n. sp. from southern Italy is very close to the French C. matthiolae Hoffmann, and was collected of Matthiola like the species from southern France.
... DEPARTMENT OF STATE [Public Notice 8359] Culturally Significant Objects Imported for Exhibition; Determinations: ``Of Heaven and Earth: 500 Years of Italian Painting From Glasgow Museums'' SUMMARY: Notice is... objects to be included in the exhibition ``Of Heaven and Earth: 500 Years of Italian Painting from Glasgow...
Marzocchi, W.; Meletti, C.; Albarello, D.; D'Amico, V.; Luzi, L.; Martinelli, F.; Pace, B.; Pignone, M.; Rovida, A.; Visini, F.
In 2015 the Seismic Hazard Center (Centro Pericolosità Sismica - CPS) of the National Institute of Geophysics and Volcanology was commissioned of coordinating the national scientific community with the aim to elaborate a new reference seismic hazard model, mainly finalized to the update of seismic code. The CPS designed a roadmap for releasing within three years a significantly renewed PSHA model, with regard both to the updated input elements and to the strategies to be followed. The main requirements of the model were discussed in meetings with the experts on earthquake engineering that then will participate to the revision of the building code. The activities were organized in 6 tasks: program coordination, input data, seismicity models, ground motion predictive equations (GMPEs), computation and rendering, testing. The input data task has been selecting the most updated information about seismicity (historical and instrumental), seismogenic faults, and deformation (both from seismicity and geodetic data). The seismicity models have been elaborating in terms of classic source areas, fault sources and gridded seismicity based on different approaches. The GMPEs task has selected the most recent models accounting for their tectonic suitability and forecasting performance. The testing phase has been planned to design statistical procedures to test with the available data the whole seismic hazard models, and single components such as the seismicity models and the GMPEs. In this talk we show some preliminary results, summarize the overall strategy for building the new Italian PSHA model, and discuss in detail important novelties that we put forward. Specifically, we adopt a new formal probabilistic framework to interpret the outcomes of the model and to test it meaningfully; this requires a proper definition and characterization of both aleatory variability and epistemic uncertainty that we accomplish through an ensemble modeling strategy. We use a weighting scheme
Pimpinella, Giuseppe; Tartaglia, Loriana
The new European Union (EU) regulations on pharmacovigilance require that the national systems are strengthened in order to fit the new requirements. The Italian Pharmacovigilance System, coordinated by the Italian Medicines Agency (AIFA), is made by local and regional structures. In 2007, a program for funding active pharmacovigilance projects in the Italian Regions was established by the National law. The AIFA is responsible for the preparation of guidelines aimed at the identification of research areas and for the approval of the projects submitted by the regions. In April 2012, the AIFA started a program of visits at the regional pharmacovigilance centers (RPCs), aimed at monitoring their performances, evaluating the quality of the activities in order to understand the main differences and discrepancies and with a view to start a program of harmonization of the procedures in place. The outcome of the visits program highlighted major differences among the quality management systems of the various centers; hence, AIFA has decided to launch an initiative to promote in the next months the harmonization of procedures. The synergy among AIFA, regional structures, RPCs, and local structure responsible for pharmacovigilance is needed in order to establish a robust pharmacovigilance system working in full compliance with the provisions of the new EU legislation. PMID:24347980
Fizzano, M.R.; Frusteri, L.
The Council of the European Union has completely renewed the framework regarding radiation protection by adopting some directives: Directive 97/43 EURATOM lays down the general principles of the radiation protection of individuals undergoing exposure to ionising radiations related to medical exposures, as a supplement of Directive 96/29 EURATOM laying down the basic safety standards for the protection of the health of workers and the general public against the dangers arising from ionising radiations.The incorporation into Italian legislation of the European Community directives on the improvement of health and safety at work has promoted a vast effort in order to revise the surveillance approach in many facilities, including hospitals. In Italy, safety law is referred to every workplace; anyway the use of ionising radiations is ruled by specific laws. So in the health care structures it is necessary integrating both the laws and this process is often difficult to carry on. The Italian Legislative Decree 230/95, one the main laws that aim to protect workers against ionising radiations, introduced Directive 96/29/EURATOM. This Decree asks that a doctor and a technical expert analyse the workplace and classify area and workers in according to dose of ionising radiation established by law. The Italian Legislative Decree 626/94 asks that risk analysis in general is made by doctor and specialist in risk. So, in case of risk from ionising radiation, all these figures have to cooperate in order to make an evaluation risk document. (N.C.)
Canesi, Rubina; Marella, Giuliano
This paper reports data describing development projects for new buildings according to construction costs in North-East Italy. A survey was carried out on local companies undertaking new residential development projects in two Italian regions (Veneto and Lombardy). The aim of this survey was to record new real estate construction projects, collecting both technical and socio-economic cost features. It is extremely difficult to collect such data for the Italian real estate construction sector, due to its lack of transparency, so that the novelty for the Italian scenario is the dataset itself. Another interest perspective of this survey is that socio-economic characteristics were also recorded; they are often studied in urban economics, but are usually related to property purchase prices and values, not to construction costs. The data come from an analysis of Canesi and Marella regarding the relationship between the trend of construction costs and the socio-economic conditions of the reference setting, such as the mean years of schooling of the workforce, housing market trends, and average per capita income.
Full Text Available This paper reports data describing development projects for new buildings according to construction costs in North-East Italy. A survey was carried out on local companies undertaking new residential development projects in two Italian regions (Veneto and Lombardy. The aim of this survey was to record new real estate construction projects, collecting both technical and socio-economic cost features. It is extremely difficult to collect such data for the Italian real estate construction sector, due to its lack of transparency, so that the novelty for the Italian scenario is the dataset itself. Another interest perspective of this survey is that socio-economic characteristics were also recorded; they are often studied in urban economics, but are usually related to property purchase prices and values, not to construction costs. The data come from an analysis of Canesi and Marella regarding the relationship between the trend of construction costs and the socio-economic conditions of the reference setting, such as the mean years of schooling of the workforce, housing market trends, and average per capita income.
Fizzano, M.R.; Frusteri, L. [Technical Advisory Dept. for Risk Assessment and Prevention, Italian Workers Compensation Authority, Rome (Italy)
The Council of the European Union has completely renewed the framework regarding radiation protection by adopting some directives: Directive 97/43 EURATOM lays down the general principles of the radiation protection of individuals undergoing exposure to ionising radiations related to medical exposures, as a supplement of Directive 96/29 EURATOM laying down the basic safety standards for the protection of the health of workers and the general public against the dangers arising from ionising radiations.The incorporation into Italian legislation of the European Community directives on the improvement of health and safety at work has promoted a vast effort in order to revise the surveillance approach in many facilities, including hospitals. In Italy, safety law is referred to every workplace; anyway the use of ionising radiations is ruled by specific laws. So in the health care structures it is necessary integrating both the laws and this process is often difficult to carry on. The Italian Legislative Decree 230/95, one the main laws that aim to protect workers against ionising radiations, introduced Directive 96/29/EURATOM. This Decree asks that a doctor and a technical expert analyse the workplace and classify area and workers in according to dose of ionising radiation established by law. The Italian Legislative Decree 626/94 asks that risk analysis in general is made by doctor and specialist in risk. So, in case of risk from ionising radiation, all these figures have to cooperate in order to make an evaluation risk document. (N.C.)
Full Text Available Spoken words are highly variable. A single word may never be uttered the same way twice. As listeners, we regularly encounter speakers of different ages, genders, and accents, increasing the amount of variation we face. How listeners understand spoken words as quickly and adeptly as they do despite this variation remains an issue central to linguistic theory. We propose that learned acoustic patterns are mapped simultaneously to linguistic representations and to social representations. In doing so, we illuminate a paradox that results in the literature from, we argue, the focus on representations and the peripheral treatment of word-level phonetic variation. We consider phonetic variation more fully and highlight a growing body of work that is problematic for current theory: Words with different pronunciation variants are recognized equally well in immediate processing tasks, while an atypical, infrequent, but socially-idealized form is remembered better in the long-term. We suggest that the perception of spoken words is socially-weighted, resulting in sparse, but high-resolution clusters of socially-idealized episodes that are robust in immediate processing and are more strongly encoded, predicting memory inequality. Our proposal includes a dual-route approach to speech perception in which listeners map acoustic patterns in speech to linguistic and social representations in tandem. This approach makes novel predictions about the extraction of information from the speech signal, and provides a framework with which we can ask new questions. We propose that language comprehension, broadly, results from the integration of both linguistic and social information.
Slote, Joseph; Strand, Julia F
Models of spoken word recognition typically make predictions that are then tested in the laboratory against the word recognition scores of human subjects (e.g., Luce & Pisoni Ear and Hearing, 19, 1-36, 1998). Unfortunately, laboratory collection of large sets of word recognition data can be costly and time-consuming. Due to the numerous advantages of online research in speed, cost, and participant diversity, some labs have begun to explore the use of online platforms such as Amazon's Mechanical Turk (AMT) to source participation and collect data (Buhrmester, Kwang, & Gosling Perspectives on Psychological Science, 6, 3-5, 2011). Many classic findings in cognitive psychology have been successfully replicated online, including the Stroop effect, task-switching costs, and Simon and flanker interference (Crump, McDonnell, & Gureckis PLoS ONE, 8, e57410, 2013). However, tasks requiring auditory stimulus delivery have not typically made use of AMT. In the present study, we evaluated the use of AMT for collecting spoken word identification and auditory lexical decision data. Although online users were faster and less accurate than participants in the lab, the results revealed strong correlations between the online and laboratory measures for both word identification accuracy and lexical decision speed. In addition, the scores obtained in the lab and online were equivalently correlated with factors that have been well established to predict word recognition, including word frequency and phonological neighborhood density. We also present and analyze a method for precise auditory reaction timing that is novel to behavioral research. Taken together, these findings suggest that AMT can be a viable alternative to the traditional laboratory setting as a source of participation for some spoken word recognition research.
Strauß, Antje; Kotz, Sonja A; Scharinger, Mathias; Obleser, Jonas
Slow neural oscillations (~1-15 Hz) are thought to orchestrate the neural processes of spoken language comprehension. However, functional subdivisions within this broad range of frequencies are disputed, with most studies hypothesizing only about single frequency bands. The present study utilizes an established paradigm of spoken word recognition (lexical decision) to test the hypothesis that within the slow neural oscillatory frequency range, distinct functional signatures and cortical networks can be identified at least for theta- (~3-7 Hz) and alpha-frequencies (~8-12 Hz). Listeners performed an auditory lexical decision task on a set of items that formed a word-pseudoword continuum: ranging from (1) real words over (2) ambiguous pseudowords (deviating from real words only in one vowel; comparable to natural mispronunciations in speech) to (3) pseudowords (clearly deviating from real words by randomized syllables). By means of time-frequency analysis and spatial filtering, we observed a dissociation into distinct but simultaneous patterns of alpha power suppression and theta power enhancement. Alpha exhibited a parametric suppression as items increasingly matched real words, in line with lowered functional inhibition in a left-dominant lexical processing network for more word-like input. Simultaneously, theta power in a bilateral fronto-temporal network was selectively enhanced for ambiguous pseudowords only. Thus, enhanced alpha power can neurally 'gate' lexical integration, while enhanced theta power might index functionally more specific ambiguity-resolution processes. To this end, a joint analysis of both frequency bands provides neural evidence for parallel processes in achieving spoken word recognition. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Xu, Jiang; Gannon, Patrick J; Emmorey, Karen; Smith, Jason F; Braun, Allen R
Symbolic gestures, such as pantomimes that signify actions (e.g., threading a needle) or emblems that facilitate social transactions (e.g., finger to lips indicating "be quiet"), play an important role in human communication. They are autonomous, can fully take the place of words, and function as complete utterances in their own right. The relationship between these gestures and spoken language remains unclear. We used functional MRI to investigate whether these two forms of communication are processed by the same system in the human brain. Responses to symbolic gestures, to their spoken glosses (expressing the gestures' meaning in English), and to visually and acoustically matched control stimuli were compared in a randomized block design. General Linear Models (GLM) contrasts identified shared and unique activations and functional connectivity analyses delineated regional interactions associated with each condition. Results support a model in which bilateral modality-specific areas in superior and inferior temporal cortices extract salient features from vocal-auditory and gestural-visual stimuli respectively. However, both classes of stimuli activate a common, left-lateralized network of inferior frontal and posterior temporal regions in which symbolic gestures and spoken words may be mapped onto common, corresponding conceptual representations. We suggest that these anterior and posterior perisylvian areas, identified since the mid-19th century as the core of the brain's language system, are not in fact committed to language processing, but may function as a modality-independent semiotic system that plays a broader role in human communication, linking meaning with symbols whether these are words, gestures, images, sounds, or objects.
Piai, Vitória; Roelofs, Ardi; Rommers, Joost; Maris, Eric
Two major components form the basis of spoken word production: the access of conceptual and lexical/phonological information in long-term memory, and motor preparation and execution of an articulatory program. Whereas the motor aspects of word production have been well characterized as reflected in alpha-beta desynchronization, the memory aspects have remained poorly understood. Using magnetoencephalography, we investigated the neurophysiological signature of not only motor but also memory aspects of spoken-word production. Participants named or judged pictures after reading sentences. To probe the involvement of the memory component, we manipulated sentence context. Sentence contexts were either constraining or nonconstraining toward the final word, presented as a picture. In the judgment task, participants indicated with a left-hand button press whether the picture was expected given the sentence. In the naming task, they named the picture. Naming and judgment were faster with constraining than nonconstraining contexts. Alpha-beta desynchronization was found for constraining relative to nonconstraining contexts pre-picture presentation. For the judgment task, beta desynchronization was observed in left posterior brain areas associated with conceptual processing and in right motor cortex. For the naming task, in addition to the same left posterior brain areas, beta desynchronization was found in left anterior and posterior temporal cortex (associated with memory aspects), left inferior frontal cortex, and bilateral ventral premotor cortex (associated with motor aspects). These results suggest that memory and motor components of spoken word production are reflected in overlapping brain oscillations in the beta band. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Burton, Harold; Sinclair, Robert J; Agato, Alvin
We examined cortical activity in early blind during word recognition memory. Nine participants were blind at birth and one by 1.5years. In an event-related design, we studied blood oxygen level-dependent responses to studied ("old") compared to novel ("new") words. Presentation mode was in Braille or spoken. Responses were larger for identified "new" words read with Braille in bilateral lower and higher tier visual areas and primary somatosensory cortex. Responses to spoken "new" words were larger in bilateral primary and accessory auditory cortex. Auditory cortex was unresponsive to Braille words and occipital cortex responded to spoken words but not differentially with "old"/"new" recognition. Left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex had larger responses to "old" words only with Braille. Larger occipital cortex responses to "new" Braille words suggested verbal memory based on the mechanism of recollection. A previous report in sighted noted larger responses for "new" words studied in association with pictures that created a distinctiveness heuristic source factor which enhanced recollection during remembering. Prior behavioral studies in early blind noted an exceptional ability to recall words. Utilization of this skill by participants in the current study possibly engendered recollection that augmented remembering "old" words. A larger response when identifying "new" words possibly resulted from exhaustive recollecting the sensory properties of "old" words in modality appropriate sensory cortices. The uniqueness of a memory role for occipital cortex is in its cross-modal responses to coding tactile properties of Braille. The latter possibly reflects a "sensory echo" that aids recollection. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Vitale, Jacopo A; Caumo, Andrea; Roveda, Eliana; Montaruli, Angela; La Torre, Antonio; Battaglini, Claudio L; Carandente, Franca
Vitale, JA, Caumo, A, Roveda, E, Montaruli, A, La Torre, A, Battaglini, CL, and Carandente, F. Physical attributes and NFL Combine performance tests between Italian National League and American football players: a comparative study. J Strength Cond Res 30(10): 2802-2808, 2016-The purpose of this study was to examine anthropometric measurements and the results of a battery of performance tests administered during the National Football League (NFL) Combine between American football players who were declared eligible to participate in the NFL Combine and football players of a top Italian team (Rhinos Milan). Participants (N = 50) were categorized by position into 1 of 3 groups based on playing position: skill players (SP) included wide receivers, cornerbacks, free safeties, strong safeties, and running backs; big skill players (BSP) consisted of fullbacks, linebackers, tight ends, and defensive ends; lineman (LM) included centers, offensive guards, offensive tackles, and defensive tackles. A 1-way analysis of variance followed by the Tukey-Kramer post hoc test was used for comparisons between Italian players by playing position. Ninety-five percent CIs were used for comparisons between American and Italian football for the NFL Combine performance tests. Significant differences for all the variables between the 3 playing categories were observed among the Italian players; LM had higher anthropometric and body composition values than SP (p American football players presented significantly higher anthropometric values and test performance scores when compared with Italian players. Administrators of professional football teams in Italy need to improve the player's physical attributes, so the gap that currently exists between American and Italian players can be reduced, which could significantly improve the quality of American football in Italy.
Mina, Concetta; Marianetti, Massimo; Fratino, Mariangela; Montemurro, Mirella; Vanacore, Nicola; Amabile, Giuseppe Amadio
Semantically unique items are concrete entities characterized by a unique cluster of semantic information. In this field, neuropsychology has always given more attention to faces than to other kind of stimuli. An important category that has been largely neglected so far is famous buildings. A total of 200 healthy Italian adults with age, sex and education homogenously distributed across subgroups were administered a famous buildings naming and recognition test, which assessed both visual and verbal modalities. The test was divided in seven sections; norms were calculated taking into account demographic variables such as age, sex and education. Multiple regression analyses showed that education influenced significantly the performance on all subtests; age had a significant effect for five subtests; sex for three subtests. Adjusted scores were used to determine inferential cutoff scores and to compute equivalent scores.
Pyykkönen, Pirita; Hyönä, Jukka; van Gompel, Roger P G
This study used the visual world eye-tracking method to investigate activation of general world knowledge related to gender-stereotypical role names in online spoken language comprehension in Finnish. The results showed that listeners activated gender stereotypes elaboratively in story contexts where this information was not needed to build coherence. Furthermore, listeners made additional inferences based on gender stereotypes to revise an already established coherence relation. Both results are consistent with mental models theory (e.g., Garnham, 2001). They are harder to explain by the minimalist account (McKoon & Ratcliff, 1992) which suggests that people limit inferences to those needed to establish coherence in discourse.
Mianisha C. Finney
Full Text Available The present study evaluated a two-mechanism memory model of the online auditory comprehension of object relative (OR sentences in 7–11-year-old typically developing children. Mechanisms of interest included working memory storage (WMS and attention focus switching. We predicted that both mechanisms would be important for comprehension. Forty-four children completed a listening span task indexing WMS, an auditory attention focus switching task, and an agent selection task indexing spoken sentence comprehension. Regression analyses indicated that WMS and attention focus switching accuracy each accounted for significant and unique variance in the children’s OR comprehension after accounting for age. Results were interpreted to suggest that WMS is important for OR comprehension by supporting children’s ability to retain both noun phrase 1 and noun phrase 2 prior to their reactivating noun phrase 1 from memory in order to integrate it into a developing structure. Attention focus switching was interpreted to be critical in supporting children’s noun phrase 1 reactivation, as they needed to switch their focus of attention momentarily away from ongoing language processing to memory retrieval.
Full Text Available Open letter to the Minister of Italian University. The government should get advice from the best Italian scientists for the necessary reform of the Italian University, with special concern to crucial processes as the appointment of new professors and academic evaluation. The current government proposal for a random draw of evaluation committees in charge for the appointment of new professors is considered as a wrong solution and harmful tool for dealing with such a crucial process.
Full Text Available The compounding is a fundamental process of word formation and its importance to our understanding of language is crucial. The study of compounds for the last few years has been at the centre of attention in such areas of linguistics as computational approaches, psycholinguistics and language acquisition. Linguists advanced hypotheses not only regarding the construction of compounds, but also where they fit into the model of grammar. The paper attempts to answer some basic questions pertaining to lexical creativity in nominal compounding in Italian sports column. These include the definition of the concept, the types of noun-noun compounds in Modern Italian and a brief comparison of these types.
Magda Bianco; Francesca Lotti; Roberta Zizza
Gender gaps in the labour market, in boardrooms and in wages are still significant in Italy. This paper, which summarizes the main results of a research project aimed at identifying the economic consequences of these gaps and their main causes, presents some evidence regarding wage differentials, differences in the gender composition of boards and differentials in access to credit. The causes of these persistent gaps are found both in labour supply and demand factors. Among the former we coun...
Full Text Available In 1977, “The Biennale of Dissent” was a significant event in the history of the anti-Soviet dissidence. In Italy during the 1970s intellectuals, artists and architects had many connections with Marxist theories and the Soviet Union, but their role, referred to in this event, appears complex and, on occasions, contradictory. The Italian cultural world mirrored a political situation, in which it became a duty to take up a position which opposed Italy’s Fascist past. Artistic and political opinions coincided. For this reason, in Italy the culture of dissidence led to a heated debate. One generation of architects was born in this context and few were able to think outside the box. The interpretation proposed for Italian architecture and the masters of the time should prompt a consideration of the current absence of Italian critics and architects in international debates. Article received: December 16, 2016; Article accepted: January 13, 2017; Published online: April 20, 2017 Original scholarly paper How to cite this article: Guido, Luca. "'The Biennale of Dissent 1977' and Italian Architecture during the 1970s." AM Journal of Art and Media Studies 12 (2017: 17-28. doi: 10.25038/am.v0i12.164
Full Text Available Despite the abundance of periodicals in Italian language in Rijeka in the second half of the 19th century and early 20th century, their comprehensive and systematic research together with their modern and objective evaluation is still insufficient. With the aim of contributing to the elucidation and analysis of under-studied Italian publications in Rijeka, we have tried to consider from the contemporary point of view the context in which the subject of our interest appears, to study the available written documents, and to evaluate the facts of literary phenomena within a given corpus. We have tried to substantiate by examples the thesis that literary themes in our local newspapers and magazines of Italian language expression, besides further exploring the Italian literary heritage, have contributed to our overall cultural events through the opening of aesthetic horizons of readers and a number of authors, and have largely contributed to the intertwining of the two cultures. Through testing, systematization and classification of literary topics, we concluded that newspapers and magazines in Rijeka, as the most important medium of the historical period that we examined, have had a significant and dynamic part in the process that led to the gradual change of mindset, views on society and art, and an overall way of thinking and action. In our opinion, through our contribution we have tried to reconstruct from oblivion a valuable segment of Rijeka's cultural heritage.
This article explores Synge’s trip to Italy and his sojourn in Rome in 1896. It will document his immersion into Italian culture as well as touching on the significance of his trip to Rome in light of his successive artistic career. The outcomes of Synge’s Italian journey translated into a newspaper report for the Irish Times which discusses the riots in Piazza Montecitorio caused by Prime Minister Francesco Crispi’s resignation after the Italian defeat by the Emperor of Ethiopia Menelik, dur...
Kwon, Youan; Choi, Sungmook; Lee, Yoonhyoung
This study examines whether orthographic information is used during prelexical processes in spoken word recognition by investigating ERPs during spoken word processing for Korean words. Differential effects due to orthographic syllable neighborhood size and sound-to-spelling consistency on P200 and N320 were evaluated by recording ERPs from 42 participants during a lexical decision task. The results indicate that P200 was smaller for words whose orthographic syllable neighbors are large in number rather than those that are small. In addition, a word with a large orthographic syllable neighborhood elicited a smaller N320 effect than a word with a small orthographic syllable neighborhood only when the word had inconsistent sound-to-spelling mapping. The results provide support for the assumption that orthographic information is used early during the prelexical spoken word recognition process. © 2015 Society for Psychophysiological Research.
Damian, Markus F; Dorjee, Dusana; Stadthagen-Gonzalez, Hans
Although it is relatively well established that access to orthographic codes in production tasks is possible via an autonomous link between meaning and spelling (e.g., Rapp, Benzing, & Caramazza, 1997), the relative contribution of phonology to orthographic access remains unclear. Two experiments demonstrated persistent repetition priming in spoken and written single-word responses, respectively. Two further experiments showed priming from spoken to written responses and vice versa, which is interpreted as reflecting a role of phonology in constraining orthographic access. A final experiment showed priming from spoken onto written responses even when participants engaged in articulatory suppression during writing. Overall, the results support the view that access to orthography codes is accomplished via both the autonomous link between meaning and spelling and an indirect route via phonology.
Spaccavento, Simona; Cafforio, Elisabetta; Cellamare, Fara; Colucci, Antonia; Di Palma, Angela; Falcone, Rosanna; Craca, Angela; Loverre, Anna; Nardulli, Roberto; Glueckauf, Robert L
To evaluate the psychometric properties of the Italian version of Functional Outcome Questionnaire - Aphasia. Two hundred and five persons with stroke-related aphasia and right hemiparesis who received ongoing assistance from a family caregiver were assessed using the Functional Outcome Questionnaire - Aphasia, Aachener Aphasie Test, Token Test, Raven's Coloured Progressive Matrices, Functional Independence Measure (FIM), Functional Assessment Measure (FAM), and Quality of Life Questionnaire for Aphasics (QLQA). The Functional Outcome Questionnaire - Aphasia was translated into the Italian language using a translation and back-translation method. Reliability and construct validity of the Functional Outcome Questionnaire - Aphasia were evaluated. The Italian version of the Functional Outcome Questionnaire - Aphasia showed good internal consistency and test-retest reliability for the overall scale (α = 0.98; ICC = 0.95) and subscales (α = 0.89 for the communicating basic needs (CBN), α = 0.92 for the making routine requests (MRR), α = 0.96 for the communicating new information (CNI), α = 0.93 for the attention/other communication skills (AO); ICC = 0.95 for CBN, ICC = 0.96 for MRR, ICC = 0.97 for CNI and ICC = 0.92 for AO). Significant correlations were found between the Functional Outcome Questionnaire - Aphasia and Token Test, QLQA, Aachener Aphasie Test scores, and FAM linguistic scores, indicating good convergent validity. Low correlations were found between Functional Outcome Questionnaire - Aphasia and Raven's Coloured Progressive Matrices and FIM motor scores, showing good discriminant validity. The overall findings of this study supported the reliability and construct validity of the Italian version of the Functional Outcome Questionnaire - Aphasia. This measure holds considerable promise in assessing the functional outcomes of aphasia rehabilitation in Italian-speaking persons with aphasia. Implications for
Westerveld, Marleen F; Gillon, Gail T
This investigation explored the effects of oral narrative elicitation context on children's spoken language performance. Oral narratives were produced by a group of 11 children with reading disability (aged between 7;11 and 9;3) and an age-matched control group of 11 children with typical reading skills in three different contexts: story retelling, story generation, and personal narratives. In the story retelling condition, the children listened to a story on tape while looking at the pictures in a book, before being asked to retell the story without the pictures. In the story generation context, the children were shown a picture containing a scene and were asked to make up their own story. Personal narratives were elicited with the help of photos and short narrative prompts. The transcripts were analysed at microstructure level on measures of verbal productivity, semantic diversity, and morphosyntax. Consistent with previous research, the results revealed no significant interactions between group and context, indicating that the two groups of children responded to the type of elicitation context in a similar way. There was a significant group effect, however, with the typical readers showing better performance overall on measures of morphosyntax and semantic diversity. There was also a significant effect of elicitation context with both groups of children producing the longest, linguistically most dense language samples in the story retelling context. Finally, the most significant differences in group performance were observed in the story retelling condition, with the typical readers outperforming the poor readers on measures of verbal productivity, number of different words, and percent complex sentences. The results from this study confirm that oral narrative samples can distinguish between good and poor readers and that the story retelling condition may be a particularly useful context for identifying strengths and weaknesses in oral narrative performance.
Full Text Available This paper reports on a qualitative discourse analysis of 290 tokens of (the same occurring in spoken American English. Our study of these naturally occurring tokens extends and elaborates on the analysis of this expression that was proposed by Halliday and Hasan (l976. We also review other prior research on (the same in our attempt to provide data-based answers to the following three questions: (1 under what conditions is the definite article the obligatory or optional with same? (2 what are the head nouns that typically follow same and why is there sometimes no head noun? (3 what type(s of cohesive relationships can (the same signal in spoken English discourse? Finally, we explore some typical pedagogical treatments of (the same in current ESL/EFL textbooks and reference grammars. Then we make our own suggestions regarding how teachers of English as a second or foreign language might go about presenting this useful expression to their learners. Este estudo apresenta uma análise qualitativa do discurso de 290 ocorrências de (the same no Inglês Americano falado. Nosso estudo sobre essas ocorrências naturais amplia e elabora a análise desta expressão que foi proposta por Halliday e Hassan (1976. Também revisamos investigações posteriores sobre (the same com o intuito de fornecer respostas fundamentadas em um banco de dados para as três seguintes perguntas: (1 em quais condições o artigo definido (the é obrigatório ou opcional juntamente a same? (2 quais são os principais substantivos que tipicamente seguem same e por que, às vezes, não há substantivo? (3 que tipo(s de relações coesivas pode (the same indicar no discurso do Inglês falado? Finalmente, exploramos alguns tratamentos pedagógicos típicos de (the same nos atuais livros-texto e gramáticas de Inglês – L2/LE. Em seguida, sugerimos como os professores de Inglês, como segunda língua ou língua estrangeira, poderiam ensinar essa útil expressão para seus
the aim of this collaborative project of the Italian Network of Cancer Registries (Airtum; www.registri-tumori.it) was to analyse cancer incidence and mortality trends in Italy with special reference to the period 1998-2005. the study was based on the Airtum database, which collects and checks data from all the Airtum registries. The present study was based on 20 general and 2 specific populationbased cancer registries. Overall, we analysed 818,017 incident cases and 342,444 cancer deaths for the time period 1998-2005. Seventy percent of the analysed population was from the North of Italy, 17% from the Centre, and 13% from the South. A joinpoint analysis was carried out to detect the point in time where the trend changed; trends are described by means of the estimated annual percent change (APC), with appropriate 95% confidence intervals. Crude and standardized incidence and mortality rates were computed for 36 cancer sites, for both sexes, three age-classes (0-49, 50-69 and 70+ years), and three geographic areas (North, Centre, and South of Italy). Specific chapters are devoted to long-term trends (1986-2005), differences among age-groups, and international comparisons. In 1998-2005, cancer mortality for all sites showed a statistically significant decrease among men (APC - 1.7) and women (- 0.8). Mortality significantly decreased in both sexes for stomach cancer, rectum cancer, liver cancer, and Hodgkin lymphoma. Mortality also decreased among men for cancers of the upper aerodigestive tract, oesophagus, lung, prostate, urinary bladder, and leukaemia. Among women mortality decreased for cancers of the colon, bone, breast, and uterus not otherwise specified. An increase in mortality was recorded for lung cancer among women (+1.5) and melanoma among men (+2.6). Incidence for all cancers together (except non-melanoma skin cancers) increased among men (APC +0.3) and remained stable among women. Cancer sites which showed increasing incidence were thyroid and melanoma
Huang, Xianjun; Yang, Jin-Chen; Chang, Ruohan; Guo, Chunyan
Using unimodal auditory tasks of word-matching and meaning-matching, this study investigated how the phonological and semantic processes in Chinese disyllabic spoken word recognition are modulated by top-down mechanism induced by experimental tasks. Both semantic similarity and word-initial phonological similarity between the primes and targets were manipulated. Results showed that at early stage of recognition (~150-250 ms), an enhanced P2 was elicited by the word-initial phonological mismatch in both tasks. In ~300-500 ms, a fronto-central negative component was elicited by word-initial phonological similarities in the word-matching task, while a parietal negativity was elicited by semantically unrelated primes in the meaning-matching task, indicating that both the semantic and phonological processes can be involved in this time window, depending on the task requirements. In the late stage (~500-700 ms), a centro-parietal Late N400 was elicited in both tasks, but with a larger effect in the meaning-matching task than in the word-matching task. This finding suggests that the semantic representation of the spoken words can be activated automatically in the late stage of recognition, even when semantic processing is not required. However, the magnitude of the semantic activation is modulated by task requirements.
Jesse, Alexandra; McQueen, James M
Visual cues to the individual segments of speech and to sentence prosody guide speech recognition. The present study tested whether visual suprasegmental cues to the stress patterns of words can also constrain recognition. Dutch listeners use acoustic suprasegmental cues to lexical stress (changes in duration, amplitude, and pitch) in spoken-word recognition. We asked here whether they can also use visual suprasegmental cues. In two categorization experiments, Dutch participants saw a speaker say fragments of word pairs that were segmentally identical but differed in their stress realization (e.g., 'ca-vi from cavia "guinea pig" vs. 'ka-vi from kaviaar "caviar"). Participants were able to distinguish between these pairs from seeing a speaker alone. Only the presence of primary stress in the fragment, not its absence, was informative. Participants were able to distinguish visually primary from secondary stress on first syllables, but only when the fragment-bearing target word carried phrase-level emphasis. Furthermore, participants distinguished fragments with primary stress on their second syllable from those with secondary stress on their first syllable (e.g., pro-'jec from projector "projector" vs. 'pro-jec from projectiel "projectile"), independently of phrase-level emphasis. Seeing a speaker thus contributes to spoken-word recognition by providing suprasegmental information about the presence of primary lexical stress.
Norton, Elizabeth S.; Christodoulou, Joanna A.; Gaab, Nadine; Lieberman, Daniel A.; Triantafyllou, Christina; Wolf, Maryanne; Whitfield-Gabrieli, Susan; Gabrieli, John D. E.
Phonological awareness, knowledge that speech is composed of syllables and phonemes, is critical for learning to read. Phonological awareness precedes and predicts successful transition from language to literacy, and weakness in phonological awareness is a leading cause of dyslexia, but the brain basis of phonological awareness for spoken language in children is unknown. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging to identify the neural correlates of phonological awareness using an auditory word-rhyming task in children who were typical readers or who had dyslexia (ages 7–13) and a younger group of kindergarteners (ages 5–6). Typically developing children, but not children with dyslexia, recruited left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) when making explicit phonological judgments. Kindergarteners, who were matched to the older children with dyslexia on standardized tests of phonological awareness, also recruited left DLPFC. Left DLPFC may play a critical role in the development of phonological awareness for spoken language critical for reading and in the etiology of dyslexia. PMID:21693783
Havas, Viktória; Taylor, Jsh; Vaquero, Lucía; de Diego-Balaguer, Ruth; Rodríguez-Fornells, Antoni; Davis, Matthew H
We studied the initial acquisition and overnight consolidation of new spoken words that resemble words in the native language (L1) or in an unfamiliar, non-native language (L2). Spanish-speaking participants learned the spoken forms of novel words in their native language (Spanish) or in a different language (Hungarian), which were paired with pictures of familiar or unfamiliar objects, or no picture. We thereby assessed, in a factorial way, the impact of existing knowledge (schema) on word learning by manipulating both semantic (familiar vs unfamiliar objects) and phonological (L1- vs L2-like novel words) familiarity. Participants were trained and tested with a 12-hr intervening period that included overnight sleep or daytime awake. Our results showed (1) benefits of sleep to recognition memory that were greater for words with L2-like phonology and (2) that learned associations with familiar but not unfamiliar pictures enhanced recognition memory for novel words. Implications for complementary systems accounts of word learning are discussed.
Full Text Available It has long been speculated whether communication between humans and machines based on natural speech related cortical activity is possible. Over the past decade, studies have suggested that it is feasible to recognize isolated aspects of speech from neural signals, such as auditory features, phones or one of a few isolated words. However, until now it remained an unsolved challenge to decode continuously spoken speech from the neural substrate associated with speech and language processing. Here, we show for the first time that continuously spoken speech can be decoded into the expressed words from intracranial electrocorticographic (ECoG recordings. Specifically, we implemented a system, which we call Brain-To-Text that models single phones, employs techniques from automatic speech recognition (ASR, and thereby transforms brain activity while speaking into the corresponding textual representation. Our results demonstrate that our system achieved word error rates as low as 25% and phone error rates below 50%. Additionally, our approach contributes to the current understanding of the neural basis of continuous speech production by identifying those cortical regions that hold substantial information about individual phones. In conclusion, the Brain-To-Text system described in this paper represents an important step towards human-machine communication based on imagined speech.
Bonin, Patrick; Boyer, Bruno; Méot, Alain; Fayol, Michel; Droit, Sylvie
A set of 142 photographs of actions (taken from Fiez & Tranel, 1997) was standardized in French on name agreement, image agreement, conceptual familiarity, visual complexity, imageability, age of acquisition, and duration of the depicted actions. Objective word frequency measures were provided for the infinitive modal forms of the verbs and for the cumulative frequency of the verbal forms associated with the photographs. Statistics on the variables collected for action items were provided and compared with the statistics on the same variables collected for object items. The relationships between these variables were analyzed, and certain comparisons between the current database and other similar published databases of pictures of actions are reported. Spoken and written naming latencies were also collected for the photographs of actions, and multiple regression analyses revealed that name agreement, image agreement, and age of acquisition are the major determinants of action naming speed. Finally, certain analyses were performed to compare object and action naming times. The norms and the spoken and written naming latencies corresponding to the pictures are available on the Internet (http://www.psy.univ-bpclermont.fr/~pbonin/pbonin-eng.html) and should be of great use to researchers interested in the processing of actions.
Full Text Available Th e characterization of metonymy as a conceptual tool for guiding inferencing in language has opened a new fi eld of study in cognitive linguistics and pragmatics. To appreciate the value of metonymy for pragmatic inferencing, metonymy should not be viewed as performing only its prototypical referential function. Metonymic mappings are operative in speech acts at the level of reference, predication, proposition and illocution. Th e aim of this paper is to study the role of metonymy in pragmatic inferencing in spoken discourse in televison interviews. Case analyses of authentic utterances classifi ed as illocutionary metonymies following the pragmatic typology of metonymic functions are presented. Th e inferencing processes are facilitated by metonymic connections existing between domains or subdomains in the same functional domain. It has been widely accepted by cognitive linguists that universal human knowledge and embodiment are essential for the interpretation of metonymy. Th is analysis points to the role of cultural background knowledge in understanding target meanings. All these aspects of metonymic connections are exploited in complex inferential processes in spoken discourse. In most cases, metaphoric mappings are also a part of utterance interpretation.
Gisladottir, Rosa S; Bögels, Sara; Levinson, Stephen C
Everyday conversation requires listeners to quickly recognize verbal actions, so-called speech acts , from the underspecified linguistic code and prepare a relevant response within the tight time constraints of turn-taking. The goal of this study was to determine the time-course of speech act recognition by investigating oscillatory EEG activity during comprehension of spoken dialog. Participants listened to short, spoken dialogs with target utterances that delivered three distinct speech acts (Answers, Declinations, Pre-offers). The targets were identical across conditions at lexico-syntactic and phonetic/prosodic levels but differed in the pragmatic interpretation of the speech act performed. Speech act comprehension was associated with reduced power in the alpha/beta bands just prior to Declination speech acts, relative to Answers and Pre-offers. In addition, we observed reduced power in the theta band during the beginning of Declinations, relative to Answers. Based on the role of alpha and beta desynchronization in anticipatory processes, the results are taken to indicate that anticipation plays a role in speech act recognition. Anticipation of speech acts could be critical for efficient turn-taking, allowing interactants to quickly recognize speech acts and respond within the tight time frame characteristic of conversation. The results show that anticipatory processes can be triggered by the characteristics of the interaction, including the speech act type.
Rosa S. Gisladottir
Full Text Available Everyday conversation requires listeners to quickly recognize verbal actions, so-called speech acts, from the underspecified linguistic code and prepare a relevant response within the tight time constraints of turn-taking. The goal of this study was to determine the time-course of speech act recognition by investigating oscillatory EEG activity during comprehension of spoken dialog. Participants listened to short, spoken dialogs with target utterances that delivered three distinct speech acts (Answers, Declinations, Pre-offers. The targets were identical across conditions at lexico-syntactic and phonetic/prosodic levels but differed in the pragmatic interpretation of the speech act performed. Speech act comprehension was associated with reduced power in the alpha/beta bands just prior to Declination speech acts, relative to Answers and Pre-offers. In addition, we observed reduced power in the theta band during the beginning of Declinations, relative to Answers. Based on the role of alpha and beta desynchronization in anticipatory processes, the results are taken to indicate that anticipation plays a role in speech act recognition. Anticipation of speech acts could be critical for efficient turn-taking, allowing interactants to quickly recognize speech acts and respond within the tight time frame characteristic of conversation. The results show that anticipatory processes can be triggered by the characteristics of the interaction, including the speech act type.
Fitzpatrick, Elizabeth M; Hamel, Candyce; Stevens, Adrienne; Pratt, Misty; Moher, David; Doucet, Suzanne P; Neuss, Deirdre; Bernstein, Anita; Na, Eunjung
Permanent hearing loss affects 1 to 3 per 1000 children and interferes with typical communication development. Early detection through newborn hearing screening and hearing technology provide most children with the option of spoken language acquisition. However, no consensus exists on optimal interventions for spoken language development. To conduct a systematic review of the effectiveness of early sign and oral language intervention compared with oral language intervention only for children with permanent hearing loss. An a priori protocol was developed. Electronic databases (eg, Medline, Embase, CINAHL) from 1995 to June 2013 and gray literature sources were searched. Studies in English and French were included. Two reviewers screened potentially relevant articles. Outcomes of interest were measures of auditory, vocabulary, language, and speech production skills. All data collection and risk of bias assessments were completed and then verified by a second person. Grades of Recommendation, Assessment, Development, and Evaluation (GRADE) was used to judge the strength of evidence. Eleven cohort studies met inclusion criteria, of which 8 included only children with severe to profound hearing loss with cochlear implants. Language development was the most frequently reported outcome. Other reported outcomes included speech and speech perception. Several measures and metrics were reported across studies, and descriptions of interventions were sometimes unclear. Very limited, and hence insufficient, high-quality evidence exists to determine whether sign language in combination with oral language is more effective than oral language therapy alone. More research is needed to supplement the evidence base. Copyright © 2016 by the American Academy of Pediatrics.
Souza, Jonas Gordilho; Apolinario, Daniel; Farfel, José Marcelo; Jaluul, Omar; Magaldi, Regina Miksian; Busse, Alexandre Leopold; Campora, Flávia; Jacob-Filho, Wilson
To translate, adapt and evaluate the properties of a Brazilian Portuguese version of the Spoken Knowledge in Low Literacy Patients with Diabetes, which is a questionnaire that evaluate diabetes knowledge. A cross-sectional study with type 2 diabetes patients aged ≥60 years, seen at a public healthcare organization in the city of Sao Paulo (SP). After the development of the Portuguese version, we evaluated the psychometrics properties and the association with sociodemographic and clinical variables. The regression models were adjusted for sociodemographic data, functional health literacy, duration of disease, use of insulin, and glycemic control. We evaluated 129 type 2 diabetic patients, with mean age of 75.9 (±6.2) years, mean scholling of 5.2 (±4.4) years, mean glycosylated hemoglobin of 7.2% (±1.4), and mean score on Spoken Knowledge in Low Literacy Patients with Diabetes of 42.1% (±25.8). In the regression model, the variables independently associated to Spoken Knowledge in Low Literacy Patients with Diabetes were schooling (B=0.193; p=0.003), use of insulin (B=1.326; p=0.004), duration of diabetes (B=0.053; p=0.022) and health literacy (B=0.108; p=0.021). The determination coefficient was 0.273. The Cronbach a was 0.75, demonstrating appropriate internal consistency. This translated version of the Spoken Knowledge in Low Literacy Patients with Diabetes showed to be adequate to evaluate diabetes knowledge in elderly patients with low schooling levels. It presented normal distribution, adequate internal consistency, with no ceiling or floor effect. The tool is easy to be used, can be quickly applied and does not depend on reading skills. Traduzir, adaptar e avaliar as propriedades de uma versão, em português do Brasil, do Spoken Knowledge in Low Literacy Patients with Diabetes, um questionário que avalia conhecimento em diabetes. Estudo transversal, em diabéticos tipo 2, com idade ≥60 anos de uma instituição pública de saúde, em São Paulo (SP
Cavalera, Cesare; Bastiani, Luca; Gusmeroli, Pamela; Fiocchi, Adelmo; Pagnini, Francesco; Molinari, Enrico; Castelnuovo, Gianluca; Molinaro, Sabrina
The present study examined adult gambling behaviours from a local perspective in order to assess the adult at risk and problem gambler's profile stratified by genre and by different forms of game. 4773 Italian adults from 18 to 94 years old were administered a survey to assess socio-cultural information related to gambling behaviour and the SOGS to evaluate gambling behaviour severity. Logistic regression evidenced that both at risk and problem gamblers are associated with male gender, players that use to play to more than one game, gambling with strategy-based games. People with a gambler father or both parents who used to gamble were significantly more associated with problem gambling behaviour than participants with non-gambler parents. These results present adult profiles of at risk and problem providing a more clear understanding about the relationships between gambling behavior severity and type of gambling.
Bagnoli, Silvia; Nacmias, Benedetta; Tedde, Andrea; Guarnieri, Bianca Maria; Cellini, Elena; Ciantelli, Monica; Petruzzi, Concetta; Bartoli, Antonella; Ortenzi, Luigi; Serio, Antonio; Sorbi, Sandro
A recent study has shown that a genetic variation in the Cathepsin D (catD) gene is a major risk factor for the development of Alzheimer's disease (AD). CatD is an intracellular aspartyl protease involved in neurodegeneration. A C-->T (Ala-->Val) transition at position 224 has been associated with altered intracellular maturation. Recently, a significant overrepresentation of the T allele of the catD gene in AD patients compared with controls was reported. However, this finding has not yet been confirmed. We analyzed the distribution of catD and apolipoprotein E polymorphisms in Italian patients with sporadic and familial AD (FAD). Our studies revealed that the distribution of catD polymorphism did not differ in AD and FAD patients and controls. Thus, our data do not support a role for the catD gene as a genetic risk factor in the development of AD.
Full Text Available It is unclear whether healthy aging influences concreteness effects (ie. the processing advantage seen for concrete over abstract words and its associated neural mechanisms. We conducted an fMRI study on young and older healthy adults performing auditory lexical decisions on concrete versus abstract words. We found that spoken comprehension of concrete and abstract words appears relatively preserved for healthy older individuals, including the concreteness effect. This preserved performance was supported by altered activity in left hemisphere regions including the inferior and middle frontal gyri, angular gyrus, and fusiform gyrus. This pattern is consistent with age-related compensatory mechanisms supporting spoken word processing.
In this paper, we aim to predict audience response from simple spoken sequences, speech pauses and co-speech gestures in annotated video- and audio-recorded speeches by Barack Obama at the Annual White House Correspondents’ Association Dinner in 2011 and 2016. At these dinners, the American...... president mocks himself, his collaborators, political adversary and the press corps making the audience react with cheers, laughter and/or applause. The results of the prediction experiment demonstrate that information about spoken sequences, pauses and co-speech gestures by Obama can be used to predict...
Sansoni, J; De Caro, W; Marucci, A R; Sorrentino, M; Mayner, L; Lancia, L
The aim of the work presented was to assess job satisfaction of a number of nurses from different departments working in public hospitals in Italy. The assessment was carried out through the combined use of questionnaires, which measured different aspects of job satisfaction, such as coping abilities, stress level and optimism/pessimism. The literature supports the fact that nurses' job dissatisfaction is closely connected with high levels of stress, burnout and physical and mental exhaustion, together with high workload levels and the complexity of care. The growing interest in measuring the levels of nurses' job satisfaction is attributable to a number of problems that have been raised worldwide, two of which are becoming ever so important: turnover and shortage of nurses. The research question is: Which are the main motivating factors of Italian nurses' job satisfaction/dissatisfaction? The study used a convenience (non probability) sample of 1,304 nurses from 15 different wards working in Italian public hospitals from a number of cities in northern, central and southern Italy. The survey instrument was a questionnaire consisting of 205 items which included 5 different questionnaires combined together. The results show a low level of job satisfaction (IWS= 11.5, JSS=126.4). However, the participants were overall happy about their job and considered autonomy and salary important factors for job satisfaction. Research has shown that the nurses' level of satisfaction in Italian hospitals is low. The results revealed dissatisfaction with task requirements, organizational policies and advance in career. Nurses interviewed did not feel stressed and showed to be optimistic overall. New research on the subject should be conducted by focusing on ward differences, North and South of Italy and on gender differences.
Molinari, D.; Menoni, S.; Aronica, G. T.; Ballio, F.; Berni, N.; Pandolfo, C.; Stelluti, M.; Minucci, G.
In recent years, awareness of a need for more effective disaster data collection, storage, and sharing of analyses has developed in many parts of the world. In line with this advance, Italian local authorities have expressed the need for enhanced methods and procedures for post-event damage assessment in order to obtain data that can serve numerous purposes: to create a reliable and consistent database on the basis of which damage models can be defined or validated; and to supply a comprehensive scenario of flooding impacts according to which priorities can be identified during the emergency and recovery phase, and the compensation due to citizens from insurers or local authorities can be established. This paper studies this context, and describes ongoing activities in the Umbria and Sicily regions of Italy intended to identifying new tools and procedures for flood damage data surveys and storage in the aftermath of floods. In the first part of the paper, the current procedures for data gathering in Italy are analysed. The analysis shows that the available knowledge does not enable the definition or validation of damage curves, as information is poor, fragmented, and inconsistent. A new procedure for data collection and storage is therefore proposed. The entire analysis was carried out at a local level for the residential and commercial sectors only. The objective of the next steps for the research in the short term will be (i) to extend the procedure to other types of damage, and (ii) to make the procedure operational with the Italian Civil Protection system. The long-term aim is to develop specific depth-damage curves for Italian contexts.
Ciocca, Giacomo; Capuano, Nicolina; Tuziak, Bogdan; Mollaioli, Daniele; Limoncin, Erika; Valsecchi, Diana; Carosa, Eleonora; Gravina, Giovanni L; Gianfrilli, Daniele; Lenzi, Andrea; Jannini, Emmanuele A
The Homophobia Scale (HS) is a valid tool to assess homophobia. This test is self-reporting, composed of 25 items, which assesses a total score and three factors linked to homophobia: behavior/negative affect, affect/behavioral aggression, and negative cognition. The aim of this study was to validate the HS in the Italian context. An Italian translation of the HS was carried out by two bilingual people, after which an English native translated the test back into the English language. A psychologist and sexologist checked the translated items from a clinical point of view. We recruited 100 subjects aged18-65 for the Italian validation of the HS. The Pearson coefficient and Cronbach's α coefficient were performed to test the test-retest reliability and internal consistency. A sociodemographic questionnaire including the main information as age, geographic distribution, partnership status, education, religious orientation, and sex orientation was administrated together with the translated version of HS. The analysis of the internal consistency showed an overall Cronbach's α coefficient of 0.92. In the four domains, the Cronbach's α coefficient was 0.90 in behavior/negative affect, 0.94 in affect/behavioral aggression, and 0.92 in negative cognition, whereas in the total score was 0.86. The test-retest reliability showed the following results: the HS total score was r = 0.93 (P behavior/negative affect was r = 0.79 (P behavioral aggression was r = 0.81 (P homophobic behavior.
Puri Purini, A.
The growing complexity of international relations, involving nations with vastly diverse political and socio-economic frameworks, levels of technology, geography, and environmental policies, are necessitating new Italian government policies which favour multilateral as opposed to conventional bilateral cooperation, especially in that which regards energy agreements. This paper makes this point in examining Italy's vulnerable energy supply and demand situation, the current directions being taken in this nation's foreign policies, and in assessing the key political and socio-economic factors now influencing this nation's world competitiveness in light of pending European unification and the opening up, on a wide scale, of Russian markets to Western nations and Japan
Italian energy conservation Law No. 9 was designed to reduce Italy's worrisome 82% dependency on foreign energy supplies by encouraging the development and use of renewable energy sources, fuel diversification and auto-production/cogeneration by private industry. Law No. 10 was intended to promote energy conservation initiatives especially with regard to the efficient use of energy for space heating in public buildings. Both of these legal incentives have encountered great difficulties in implementation due to the inability of the Government to provide the necessary timely and sufficient start-up funds, as well as, due to the excessive bureaucratism that was built into the administrative procedures
Full Text Available In this work after a short introduction on the structure of Programma Nazionale di Ricerche in Antartide, the different researches on atmospheric physics developed by Italian scientists are presented. The international activities are described, with particular attention both to APE experiment and the setting up of the new base in Dome-C. The results obtained are also discussed and the new projects proposed by SCAR or other international bodies are recalled. The reduction of funds and fall in young people interested in scientifi c studies represent the main problems for the future work.
Ghio, Alain; Cantarella, Giovanna; Weisz, Frédérique; Robert, Danièle; Woisard, Virginie; Fussi, Franco; Giovanni, Antoine; Baracca, Giovanna
In this cross-language study, six Italian and six French voice experts evaluated perceptually the speech of 27 Italian and 40 French patients with dysphonia to determine if there were differences based on native language. French and Italian voice specialists agreed substantially in their evaluations of the overall grade of dysphonia and moderately concerning roughness and breathiness. No statistically significant effects were found related to the language of the speakers with the exception of breathiness, a finding that was interpreted as being due to different voice pathologies in the patient groups. It was concluded that the perception of the overall grade of dysphonia and breathiness is not language-dependent, whereas the significant difference in the perception of roughness may be related to a perception/adaption process.
This paper explores the impact of a Spoken Word Education Programme (SWEP hereafter) on young people's engagement with poetry in a group of schools in London, UK. It does so with reference to the secondary Discourses of school-based learning and the Spoken Word community, an artistic "community of practice" into which they were being…
may be considered as social capital evolution in a globalized context. The entrance in the knowledge economy era, in which technological advancement runs very quickly and the pace of innovation is intensified, significantly reduces the exploitation of competitive advantages. Industrial districts, therefore, should develop, improve and change their shape in a new competitive environment, where the globalization of markets cancels the boundaries of many firms that collaborate beyond national boundaries. The paper analyzes the firms networks determinant for Italian regions and the role of network capital as pre-condition for their development. The multidimensional scaling analysis it the chosen methodology that allows us to identify the relations among Italian regions in terms of proximity/distance with respect to considered determinants, and to provide a spatial representation of them.
Busetta, A.; Milito, A. M.
For a kind of inertia effect, today the Italian welfare state protects the older too much and, on the contrary, it does not counter sufficiently the new risks associated with other phases of life. Not much seems to be implemented in favour of Italian young people who, as a matter of fact, seem to suffer a lot from the present changes: young people…
Peltier, Ilaria Nardotto; McCafferty, Steven G.
This study investigated the use of mimetic gestures of identity by foreign language teachers of Italian and their students in college classes as a form of meaning-making. All four of the teachers were found to use a variety of Italian gestures as a regular aspect of their teaching and presentation of self. Students and teachers also were found to…
Ginevra, Maria Cristina; Nota, Laura
The first purpose of the study was to establish how Italian adolescents perceive jobs in the newly emerging economy sectors as well as more traditional jobs from gender-stereotyped and gender-segregated perspectives. The second purpose was to verify the role of problem-solving and gender in gender-role stereotyping. A total of 217 Italian high…
Caricati, Luca; Chiesa, Rita; Guglielmi, Dina; Mariani, Marco Giovanni
The research undertaken for this article aims to analyse the correspondence between perceived employability and the actual national employment rate among Italian students and graduates undertaking different courses in a large Italian university. Data were collected through a cross-sectional survey of 2087 students in 19 faculties, and compared…
Tra i suoi ultimi titoli The Noble Savage. Allegory of Freedom, Pirandello and the Baroque, The American Foundations of the Hispanic Utopia. I suoi testi poetici sono apparsi su VIA (Voices in Italian Americana), Gradiva e Canadian Journal of ItalianStudies. Ha pubblicato diversi articoli di critica teatrale e cinematografica su ...
Jacobs, L.R.M.A.; Schavemaker-Piva, O.; Meijer, Y.G.S.; Nuvoloni, P.; Cioli, C.; Manca, R.; Argiolas, G.
Mission Training through Distributed Simulation (MTDS) has established itself as a powerful tool for collective training in the military domain. This potential has been recognized by the Italian Joint Forces Command and has led to the Italian participation in the 10th edition of Exercise Joint
Gianni Penzo Doria
Full Text Available This article presents the new file classification schema national for Italian schools, produced by the Italian Directorate General of Archives of the Ministry for Cultural Heritage, within the project Titulus Scuola. This classification schema represents the starting point for a standard documental system, aimed at the digital administration.
Growth patterns of Italian ryegrass cultivars established in different seasons. DCW Goodenough, CI Macdonald, ARJ Morrison. Abstract. A comparison is made between various Italian ryegrass cultivars established under irrigation on a well-drained upland site during the traditional autumn months, with plantings of the same ...
Frake, Amanda M; De Guzman, Lilia I; Rinderer, Thomas E
To compare resistance to small hive beetles (Coleoptera: Nitidulidae) between Russian and commercial Italian honey bees (Hymenoptera: Apidae), the numbers of invading beetles, their population levels through time and small hive beetle reproduction inside the colonies were monitored. We found that the genotype of queens introduced into nucleus colonies had no immediate effect on small hive beetle invasion. However, the influence of honey bee stock on small hive beetle invasion was pronounced once test bees populated the hives. In colonies deliberately freed from small hive beetle during each observation period, the average number of invading beetles was higher in the Italian colonies (29 +/- 5 beetles) than in the Russian honey bee colonies (16 +/- 3 beetles). A similar trend was observed in colonies that were allowed to be freely colonized by beetles throughout the experimental period (Italian, 11.46 +/- 1.35; Russian, 5.21 +/- 0.66 beetles). A linear regression analysis showed no relationships between the number of beetles in the colonies and adult bee population (r2 = 0.1034, P = 0.297), brood produced (r2 = 0.1488, P = 0.132), or amount of pollen (P = 0.1036, P = 0.295). There were more Italian colonies that supported small hive beetle reproduction than Russian colonies. Regardless of stock, the use of entrance reducers had a significant effect on the average number of small hive beetle (with reducer, 16 +/- 3; without reducer, 27 +/- 5 beetles). However, there was no effect on bee population (with reducer, 13.20 +/- 0.71; without reducer, 14.60 +/- 0.70 frames) or brood production (with reducer, 6.12 +/- 0.30; without reducer, 6.44 +/- 0.34 frames). Overall, Russian honey bees were more resistant to small hive beetle than Italian honey bees as indicated by fewer invading beetles, lower small hive beetle population through time, and lesser reproduction.
Full Text Available At the end of 2014, the number of firms with an Italian presence in Romania was 39,556, representing 19.33% out of total registered firms and this number is still growing. This article focuses on answering the following question: what kind of Italian firms are investing in Romania and why? Starting from the empirical observation that the number of Italian firms in Romania grew by 6.82% last year, we have used a PESTEL analysis to find the key points characterizing the country, paying attention also to the concept of country brand. From the point of view of Italian firms, we have also analyzed the shifting paradigm of internationalization from a Vertical Foreign Direct Investment model to a Horizontal Foreign Direct Investment model. This paper can be useful for managers and entrepreneurs who are oriented towards investing in Romania following the path of Italian firms.
Full Text Available In Italia la Direttiva INSPIRE ha avuto sino ad ora l’impatto maggiore sulle Regioni Italiane ed ovviamente sugli utenti dei dati e dei servizi da esse messi a disposizione secondo i dettami della Direttiva. Per questo motivo il CISIS-CPSG ha ritenuto di mettere a punto (marzo 2013 uno studio dal titolo “PROPOSTA DI DEFINIZIONE DELLE LINEE GUIDA STRATEGICHE , TECNICHE ED AMMINISTRATIVE PER LA REALIZZAZIONE DI IDT REGIONALI E PER UN SISTEMA FEDERATO DI IDTREGIONALI” al quale si rimanda per la completa trattazione e gli approfondimenti.In the article an innovative patchwork model for integration of sub-national SDIs within national SDI is discussed according to the feasability study that the union of Italian Regions carried out in 2013 spring. Multi scale and innovative policies for SDIs management are discussed and essential information of national SDI evolution are explained.
Full Text Available Abstract Background Among European countries, Italy is one of the countries where regional health disparities contribute substantially to socioeconomic health disparities. In this paper, we report on regional differences in self-reported poor health and explore possible determinants at the individual and regional levels in Italy. Methods We use data from the "Indagine Multiscopo sulle Famiglie", a survey of aspects of everyday life in the Italian population, to estimate multilevel logistic regressions that model poor self-reported health as a function of individual and regional socioeconomic factors. Next we use the causal step approach to test if living conditions, healthcare characteristics, social isolation, and health behaviors at the regional level mediate the relationship between regional socioeconomic factors and self-rated health. Results We find that residents living in regions with more poverty, more unemployment, and more income inequality are more likely to report poor health and that poor living conditions and private share of healthcare expenditures at the regional level mediate socioeconomic disparities in self-rated health among Italian regions. Conclusion The implications are that regional contexts matter and that regional policies in Italy have the potential to reduce health disparities by implementing interventions aimed at improving living conditions and access to quality healthcare.
Biagini Maria Enrica
Full Text Available A τ/charm Factory, an e + e- collider with very high luminosity at the 2–4.6 GeV center of mass energy, to be built on the Rome University at Tor Vergata campus, was studied by the Consortium Nicola Cabibbo Laboratory and the INFN Frascati Laboratories. This project is the natural evolution of the flagship Italian project SuperB Factory, funded by the Italian Government in 2010 with a budget that turned out to be insufficient to cover the total costs of the project. The study of rare events at the τ/charm energy was already planned as a Phase-II of SuperB . This design keeps all the unique features of SuperB, including the polarization of the electron beam, with the possibility to take data in a larger energy range, with reduced accelerator dimensions and construction and operation costs. A Report on the accelerator design has been published in September 2013 .
Benedetti, Anna; Canfora, Loredana; Dazzi, Carmelo; Lo Papa, Giuseppe
The Italian Society of Soil Science (SISS) was founded in Florence on February 18th, 1952. It is an association legally acknowledged by Decree of the President of the Italian Republic in February 1957. The Society is member of the International Union of Soil Sciences (IUSS) of the European Confederation of Soil Science Societies (ECSSS) and collaborates with several companies, institutions and organizations having similar objectives or policy aspects. SISS promotes progress, coordination and dissemination of soil science and its applications encouraging relationships and collaborations among soil lovers. Within the SISS there are Working Groups and Technical Committees for specific issues of interest. In particular: • the Working Group on Pedotechniques; • the Working Group on Hydromorphic and Subaqueous Soils and • the Technical Committee for Soil Education and Public Awareness. In this communication we wish to stress the activities developed since its foundation by SISS to spread soil awareness and education in Italy through this last Technical Committee, focusing also the aspect concerning grants for young graduates and PhD graduates to stimulate the involvement of young people in the field of soil science. Keywords: SISS, soil education and awareness.
Tucciarone, Claudia Maria; Franzo, Giovanni; Lupini, Caterina; Alejo, Carolina Torres; Listorti, Valeria; Mescolini, Giulia; Brandão, Paulo Eduardo; Martini, Marco; Catelli, Elena; Cecchinato, Mattia
With increasing frequency, avian Metapneumovirus (aMPV) is reported to induce respiratory signs in chickens. An adequate knowledge of current aMPV prevalence among Italian broilers is lacking, with little information available on its economical and health impact on the poultry industry. In order to collect preliminary data on the epidemiological context of aMPV in broiler flocks, a survey was performed in areas of Northern Italy with high poultry density from 2014 to 2016. Upper respiratory tract swabs were collected and processed by A and B subtype-specific multiplex real-time reverse transcription PCR (RT-PCR). Samples were also screened for infectious bronchitis virus (IBV) by generic RT-PCR and sequencing. Productive data and respiratory signs were detailed where possible. The high prevalence of aMPV was confirmed in broilers older than 26 d and also attested in IBV-negative farms. All aMPV detections belonged to subtype B. Italian strain genetic variability was evaluated by the partial attachment (G) gene sequencing of selected strains and compared with contemporary turkey strains and previously published aMPV references, revealing no host specificity and the progressive evolution of this virus in Italy. © 2017 Poultry Science Association Inc.
Priestley, Karen; Enns, Charlotte; Arbuckle, Shauna
Bimodal-bilingual programs are emerging as one way to meet broader needs and provide expanded language, educational and social-emotional opportunities for students who are deaf and hard of hearing (Marschark, M., Tang, G. & Knoors, H. (Eds). (2014). Bilingualism and bilingual Deaf education. New York, NY: Oxford University Press; Paludneviciene & Harris, R. (2011). Impact of cochlear implants on the deaf community. In Paludneviciene, R. & Leigh, I. (Eds.), Cochlear implants evolving perspectives (pp. 3-19). Washington, DC: Gallaudet University Press). However, there is limited research on students' spoken language development, signed language growth, academic outcomes or the social-emotional factors associated with these programs (Marschark, M., Tang, G. & Knoors, H. (Eds). (2014). Bilingualism and bilingual Deaf education. New York, NY: Oxford University Press; Nussbaum, D & Scott, S. (2011). The cochlear implant education center: Perspectives on effective educational practices. In Paludneviciene, R. & Leigh, I. (Eds.) Cochlear implants evolving perspectives (pp. 175-205). Washington, DC: Gallaudet University Press. The cochlear implant education center: Perspectives on effective educational practices. In Paludnevicience & Leigh (Eds). Cochlear implants evolving perspectives (pp. 175-205). Washington, DC: Gallaudet University Press; Spencer, P. & Marschark, M. (Eds.) (2010). Evidence-based practice in educating deaf and hard-of-hearing students. New York, NY: Oxford University Press). The purpose of this case study was to look at formal and informal student outcomes as well as staff and parent perceptions during the first 3 years of implementing a bimodal-bilingual (ASL and spoken English) program within an ASL milieu at a small school for the deaf. Speech and language assessment results for five students were analyzed over a 3-year period and indicated that the students made significant positive gains in all areas, although results were variable. Staff and parent
Colacino, M. (ed.); Giovannelli, G. (ed.); Stefanutti, L. (ed.)
The papers and reports, presented at this 1st workshop on 'Italian research on antarctic atmosphere', deal with several main topics: meteorology and climatology, aerosol and tropospheric clouds, planetary boundary layer, chemical-physic stratospheric property, aeronomy. They define the stage of development of Italian research in this area after 3 years of activity in Antarctica.
Full Text Available Due to the level of abstraction and subjectivity, the teaching-learning process of the opposition indefinido-perfecto in the indicative mode is a complex content to teach in in the Spanish classrooms as a foreign language. For Italian speakers who learn Spanish in the sociocultural context where the language is spoken, the structural similarities between their mother language and the target language hinder the learning of these verbal tenses, because the perception of minimum distance allows the commutation of the linguistic systems of both languages. The previous bring about the excessive use of the transfer, the fossilization of errors and the consequent stagnation of the Interlingua. The insufficiencies that these students present, in particular, those of the elementary level, influence in the production of texts, both oral and written, with correction and in accordance with the linguistic norms of the sociocultural context where he/she learns the language. These reasons motivate the analysis of some theoretical-methodological bases on the particularities of the teaching-learning process of the opposition indefinido-perfecto in the indicative mode in the Spanish language for Italian students.
Full Text Available In this study, we examined the contribution of morphological awareness to reading competence in a group of Italian L1 and Arabic-Italian early L2 children, i.e., exposed to Italian before 3 years of age. Children from first to fifth grade (age range: 6–11 years old were tested on a range of morphological awareness and lexical tasks. Reading ability was tested through standardized tests of reading fluency and comprehension. Results showed that L1 children outperformed L2 on every measure of morphological awareness, as well as on reading tests. Regression analyses revealed that morphological awareness contributed to a different extent to reading ability across groups. Accuracy in the morphological awareness tasks was a significant predictor of word (and non-word reading fluency in L1 and L2 first and second graders, while only in L1 third to fifth graders, response times and accuracy to a morphological awareness task explained a unique amount of variance in reading comprehension. Our results highlight the critical role of morphological processing in reading efficiency and suggest that a training inspired by morphological awareness may improve reading skills also in bilingual students.
Full Text Available The characterization of genetic divergence and relationships of a set of germplasm is essential for its efficient applications in crop breeding and understanding of the origin/evolution of crop varieties from a given geographical region. As the largest rice producing country in Europe, Italy holds rice germplasm with abundant genetic diversity. Although Italian rice varieties and the traditional ones in particular have played important roles in rice production and breeding, knowledge concerning the origin and evolution of Italian traditional varieties is still limited. To solve the puzzle of Italian rice origin, we characterized genetic divergence and relationships of 348 rice varieties from Italy and Asia based on the polymorphisms of microsatellite fingerprints. We also included common wild rice O. rufipogon as a reference in the characterization. Results indicated relatively rich genetic diversity (H(e = 0.63-0.65 in Italian rice varieties. Further analyses revealed a close genetic relationship of the Italian traditional varieties with those from northern China, which provides strong genetic evidence for tracing the possible origin of early established rice varieties in Italy. These findings have significant implications for the rice breeding programs, in which appropriate germplasm can be selected from a given region and utilized for transferring unique genetic traits based on its genetic diversity and evolutionary relationships.
Pounis, G; Bonanni, A; Ruggiero, E; Di Castelnuovo, A; Costanzo, S; Persichillo, M; Bonaccio, M; Cerletti, C; Riccardi, G; Donati, M B; de Gaetano, G; Iacoviello, L
Dietary habits evolve over time, being influenced by many factors and complex interactions. This work aimed at evaluating the updated information on food group consumption in Italy. A total of 8944 (4768 women and 4176 men) participants aged >18 years from all over Italy recruited in 2010-13 (Italian Nutrition & HEalth Survey, INHES) was analyzed. The recruitment was performed using computer-assisted-telephone-interviewing and one-day 24-h dietary recall retrieved from all participants. The updated, second version, of FoodEx2 food classification system was applied to extract data on food group consumption. The participation rate was 53%; 6.2% of the participants declared to follow a special diet, the most prevalent being hypo-caloric diets (55.7% of special diets). Men compared to women presented significantly higher intakes of "grains and grain-based products", "meat and meat products", "animal and vegetable fats and oils and primary derivatives" and "alcoholic beverages" (P for allfood imitates and food supplements" (P for allfood group intake among age groups, geographical regions and educational level groups were also identified (P for allfood groups and sub-groups were illustrated in different strata. The present analysis could be considered as an updated source of information for future nutrition research in Italy and in the EU. Copyright © 2017 The Italian Society of Diabetology, the Italian Society for the Study of Atherosclerosis, the Italian Society of Human Nutrition, and the Department of Clinical Medicine and Surgery, Federico II University. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Metsala, Jamie L.; Stavrinos, Despina; Walley, Amanda C.
This study examined effects of lexical factors on children's spoken word recognition across a 1-year time span, and contributions to phonological awareness and nonword repetition. Across the year, children identified words based on less input on a speech-gating task. For word repetition, older children improved for the most familiar words. There…
Huang, Xianjun; Yang, Jin-Chen
The present study investigated the effect of lexical competition on the time course of spoken word recognition in Mandarin Chinese using a unimodal auditory priming paradigm. Two kinds of competitive environments were designed. In one session (session 1), only the unrelated and the identical primes were presented before the target words. In the other session (session 2), besides the two conditions in session 1, the target words were also preceded by the cohort primes that have the same initial syllables as the targets. Behavioral results showed an inhibitory effect of the cohort competitors (primes) on target word recognition. The event-related potential results showed that the spoken word recognition processing in the middle and late latency windows is modulated by whether the phonologically related competitors are presented or not. Specifically, preceding activation of the competitors can induce direct competitions between multiple candidate words and lead to increased processing difficulties, primarily at the word disambiguation and selection stage during Mandarin Chinese spoken word recognition. The current study provided both behavioral and electrophysiological evidences for the lexical competition effect among the candidate words during spoken word recognition.
Vassilopoulos, Stephanos P; Blackwell, Simon E; Misailidi, Plousia; Kyritsi, Alexandra; Ayfanti, Maria
Interpretation training programs, in which individuals are trained to interpret ambiguous scenarios in either a negative or benign way, have proven effective in altering anxiety-related cognitive biases in both children and adults. The current study investigated whether the effects of the interpretation training procedure in children are differentiated according to the mode of presentation of the training. Ninety-four primary school children (aged 10-12 years) scoring above the mean on a social anxiety scale were randomly allocated to four groups, in which they were trained using written or spoken presentation of training materials in either the negative or benign direction. For the negative training, children who heard the training material spoken aloud (spoken presentation) made more negative interpretations of ambiguous social events, compared to children who read the training material (written presentation). However, for the benign training, there was less clear evidence for a differentiation of the effects between the two modes of presentation, although children in the spoken presentation group performed better in a stressful task and showed a trend to rate their mood as more positive after the task than children in the written presentation group. These results not only forward our understanding of the mechanism of the genesis of cognitive bias in children, but also highlight the need for further investigation of how to optimize the effectiveness of interpretation training in children.
Ramos-Sanchez, Jose Luis; Cuadrado-Gordillo, Isabel
This article presents the results of a quasi-experimental study of whether there exists a causal relationship between spoken language and the initial learning of reading/writing. The subjects were two matched samples each of 24 preschool pupils (boys and girls), controlling for certain relevant external variables. It was found that there was no…
Planchou, Clément; Clément, Sylvain; Béland, Renée; Cason, Nia; Motte, Jacques; Samson, Séverine
Previous studies have reported that children score better in language tasks using sung rather than spoken stimuli. We examined word detection ease in sung and spoken sentences that were equated for phoneme duration and pitch variations in children aged 7 to 12 years with typical language development (TLD) as well as in children with specific language impairment (SLI ), and hypothesized that the facilitation effect would vary with language abilities. In Experiment 1, 69 children with TLD (7-10 years old) detected words in sentences that were spoken, sung on pitches extracted from speech, and sung on original scores. In Experiment 2, we added a natural speech rate condition and tested 68 children with TLD (7-12 years old). In Experiment 3, 16 children with SLI and 16 age-matched children with TLD were tested in all four conditions. In both TLD groups, older children scored better than the younger ones. The matched TLD group scored higher than the SLI group who scored at the level of the younger children with TLD . None of the experiments showed a facilitation effect of sung over spoken stimuli. Word detection abilities improved with age in both TLD and SLI groups. Our findings are compatible with the hypothesis of delayed language abilities in children with SLI , and are discussed in light of the role of durational prosodic cues in words detection.
Schroeder, Rui M.
This study reports on the three-year development and validation of a new assessment tool--the Academic Spoken English Strategies Survey (ASESS). The questionnaire is the first of its kind to assess the listening and speaking strategy use of non-native English speaking (NNES) graduate students. A combination of sources was used to develop the…
Tong, Vivien; Raynor, David K; Aslani, Parisa
To explore Australian and UK consumers' receipt and use of spoken and written medicine information and examine the role of leaflets for consumers of over-the-counter (OTC) medicines. Semistructured interviews were conducted with 37 Australian and 39 UK consumers to explore information received with their most recent OTC medicine purchase, and how information was used at different times post-purchase. Interviews were audio-recorded, transcribed verbatim and thematically analysed. Similarities were evident between the key themes identified from Australian and UK consumers' experiences. Consumers infrequently sought spoken information and reported that pharmacy staff provided minimal spoken information for OTC medicines. Leaflets were not always received or wanted and had a less salient role as an information source for repeat OTC purchases. Consumers tended not to read OTC labels or leaflets. Product familiarity led to consumers tending not to seek information on labels or leaflets. When labels were consulted, directions for use were commonly read. However, OTC medicine information in general was infrequently revisited. As familiarity is not an infallible proxy for safe and effective medication use, strategies to promote the value and use of these OTC medicine information sources are important and needed. Minimal spoken information provision coupled with limited written information use may adversely impact medication safety in self-management. © 2017 Royal Pharmaceutical Society.
Carlos Filipe Guimarães Figueiredo
Full Text Available This paper analyses the relative clauses with “ku” [substrate relativizer] and “com” [with] in the Portuguese of Almoxarife, spoken by the community of Almoxarife, São Tome island, aiming to uncover what the motivations are that trigger the use of those relativizers.
Planchou, Clément; Clément, Sylvain; Béland, Renée; Cason, Nia; Motte, Jacques; Samson, Séverine
Background: Previous studies have reported that children score better in language tasks using sung rather than spoken stimuli. We examined word detection ease in sung and spoken sentences that were equated for phoneme duration and pitch variations in children aged 7 to 12 years with typical language development (TLD) as well as in children with specific language impairment (SLI ), and hypothesized that the facilitation effect would vary with language abilities. Method: In Experiment 1, 69 children with TLD (7–10 years old) detected words in sentences that were spoken, sung on pitches extracted from speech, and sung on original scores. In Experiment 2, we added a natural speech rate condition and tested 68 children with TLD (7–12 years old). In Experiment 3, 16 children with SLI and 16 age-matched children with TLD were tested in all four conditions. Results: In both TLD groups, older children scored better than the younger ones. The matched TLD group scored higher than the SLI group who scored at the level of the younger children with TLD . None of the experiments showed a facilitation effect of sung over spoken stimuli. Conclusions: Word detection abilities improved with age in both TLD and SLI groups. Our findings are compatible with the hypothesis of delayed language abilities in children with SLI , and are discussed in light of the role of durational prosodic cues in words detection. PMID:26767070
Lund, Emily; Douglas, W. Michael; Schuele, C. Melanie
Children with hearing loss who are developing spoken language tend to lag behind children with normal hearing in vocabulary knowledge. Thus, researchers must validate instructional practices that lead to improved vocabulary outcomes for children with hearing loss. The purpose of this study was to investigate how semantic richness of instruction…
This article discusses the attitudes and motivations of two Saudi children learning Japanese as a foreign language (hence JFL), a language which is rarely spoken in the country. Studies regarding children's motivation for learning foreign languages that are not widely spread in their contexts in informal settings are scarce. The aim of the study…
Gruhl, Jonathan C.; Erosheva, Elena A.; Gibbons, Laura E.; McCurry, Susan M.; Rhoads, Kristoffer; Nguyen, Viet; Arani, Keerthi; Masaki, Kamal; White, Lon
Objectives. Spoken bilingualism may be associated with cognitive reserve. Mastering a complicated written language may be associated with additional reserve. We sought to determine if midlife use of spoken and written Japanese was associated with lower rates of late life cognitive decline. Methods. Participants were second-generation Japanese-American men from the Hawaiian island of Oahu, born 1900–1919, free of dementia in 1991, and categorized based on midlife self-reported use of spoken and written Japanese (total n included in primary analysis = 2,520). Cognitive functioning was measured with the Cognitive Abilities Screening Instrument scored using item response theory. We used mixed effects models, controlling for age, income, education, smoking status, apolipoprotein E e4 alleles, and number of study visits. Results. Rates of cognitive decline were not related to use of spoken or written Japanese. This finding was consistent across numerous sensitivity analyses. Discussion. We did not find evidence to support the hypothesis that multilingualism is associated with cognitive reserve. PMID:20639282
Özçaliskan, Seyda; Adamson, Lauren B.; Dimitrova, Nevena; Baumann, Stephanie
Typically developing (TD) children refer to objects uniquely in gesture (e.g., point at a cat) before they produce verbal labels for these objects ("cat"). The onset of such gestures predicts the onset of similar spoken words, showing a strong positive relation between early gestures and early words. We asked whether gesture plays the…
Koeritzer, Margaret A.; Rogers, Chad S.; Van Engen, Kristin J.; Peelle, Jonathan E.
Purpose: The goal of this study was to determine how background noise, linguistic properties of spoken sentences, and listener abilities (hearing sensitivity and verbal working memory) affect cognitive demand during auditory sentence comprehension. Method: We tested 30 young adults and 30 older adults. Participants heard lists of sentences in…
Dral, J.; Heylen, Dirk K.J.; op den Akker, Hendrikus J.A.; Ahmad, K.
This paper reports results in automatic detection of speakers uncertainty in spoken dialogues by using prosodic markers. For this purpose a substantial part of the AMI corpus (a multi-modal multi-party meeting corpus) has been selected and converted to a suitable format so its data could be analyzed
Dral, Jeroen; Heylen, Dirk K.J.; op den Akker, Hendrikus J.A.; Ahmad, Kurshid
This paper reports results in automatic detection of speaker uncertainty in spoken dialogues by using prosodic markers. For this purpose a substantial part of the AMI corpus (a multi-modal multi-party meeting corpus) has been selected and converted to a suitable format so its data could be analyzed
Peters, Sara A; Boiteau, Timothy W; Almor, Amit
The choice and processing of referential expressions depend on the referents' status within the discourse, such that pronouns are generally preferred over full repetitive references when the referent is salient. Here we report two visual-world experiments showing that: (1) in spoken language comprehension, this preference is reflected in delayed fixations to referents mentioned after repeated definite references compared with after pronouns; (2) repeated references are processed differently than new references; (3) long-term semantic memory representations affect the processing of pronouns and repeated names differently. Overall, these results support the role of semantic discourse representation in referential processing and reveal important details about how pronouns and full repeated references are processed in the context of these representations. The results suggest the need for modifications to current theoretical accounts of reference processing such as Discourse Prominence Theory and the Informational Load Hypothesis.
Full Text Available The research and development of the Slovak spoken language dialogue system (SLDS is described in the paper. The dialogue system is based on the DARPA Communicator architecture and was developed in the period from July 2003 to June 2006. It consists of the Galaxy hub and telephony, automatic speech recognition, text-to-speech, backend, transport and VoiceXML dialogue management and automatic evaluation modules. The dialogue system is demonstrated and tested via two pilot applications, „Weather Forecast“ and „Public Transport Timetables“. The required information is retrieved from Internet resources in multi-user mode through PSTN, ISDN, GSM and/or VoIP network. Some innovation development has been performed since 2006 which is also described in the paper.
Shtyrov, Yury; Kimppa, Lilli; Pulvermüller, Friedemann
, in passive non-attend conditions, with acoustically matched high- and low-frequency words along with pseudo-words. Using factorial and correlation analyses, we found that already at ~120 ms after the spoken stimulus information was available, amplitude of brain responses was modulated by the words' lexical...... for the most frequent word stimuli, later-on (~270 ms), a more global lexicality effect with bilateral perisylvian sources was found for all stimuli, suggesting faster access to more frequent lexical entries. Our results support the account of word memory traces as interconnected neuronal circuits, and suggest......How are words represented in the human brain and can these representations be qualitatively assessed with respect to their structure and properties? Recent research demonstrates that neurophysiological signatures of individual words can be measured when subjects do not focus their attention...
Full Text Available Language technologies, in particular machine translation applications, have the potential to help break down linguistic and cultural barriers, presenting an important contribution to the globalization and internationalization of the Portuguese language, by allowing content to be shared 'from' and 'to' this language. This article aims to present the research work developed at the Laboratory of Spoken Language Systems of INESC-ID in the field of machine translation, namely the automated speech translation, the translation of microblogs and the creation of a hybrid machine translation system. We will focus on the creation of the hybrid system, which aims at combining linguistic knowledge, in particular semantico-syntactic knowledge, with statistical knowledge, to increase the level of translation quality.
Cowles, H Wind; Ferreira, Victor S
Four experiments investigate the influence of topic status and givenness on how speakers and writers structure sentences. The results of these experiments show that when a referent is previously given, it is more likely to be produced early in both sentences and word lists, confirming prior work showing that givenness increases the accessibility of given referents. When a referent is previously given and assigned topic status, it is even more likely to be produced early in a sentence, but not in a word list. Thus, there appears to be an early mention advantage for topics that is present in both written and spoken modalities, but is specific to sentence production. These results suggest that information-structure constructs like topic exert an influence that is not based only on increased accessibility, but also reflects mapping to syntactic structure during sentence production.
Baese-Berk, Melissa M; Heffner, Christopher C; Dilley, Laura C; Pitt, Mark A; Morrill, Tuuli H; McAuley, J Devin
Humans unconsciously track a wide array of distributional characteristics in their sensory environment. Recent research in spoken-language processing has demonstrated that the speech rate surrounding a target region within an utterance influences which words, and how many words, listeners hear later in that utterance. On the basis of hypotheses that listeners track timing information in speech over long timescales, we investigated the possibility that the perception of words is sensitive to speech rate over such a timescale (e.g., an extended conversation). Results demonstrated that listeners tracked variation in the overall pace of speech over an extended duration (analogous to that of a conversation that listeners might have outside the lab) and that this global speech rate influenced which words listeners reported hearing. The effects of speech rate became stronger over time. Our findings are consistent with the hypothesis that neural entrainment by speech occurs on multiple timescales, some lasting more than an hour. © The Author(s) 2014.
Full Text Available The study investigated the topics of participants’ spoken expressionin an English camp and how the topics were discussed.A case study was applied as the research design. Data were gained from focus-group interviews, observation, and questionnaire. The results showed that the participants talked about various topics, which could be categorized into two types i.e. guided topics and situational topics. Guided topics were discussed by the participants in guided conditions. On the other hand, situational topics appeared naturally with respect to the situation. The data also indicated that the activeness and confidence of the participants to talk in English gradually increasedduring the English camp. The findings suggested that English campsbeheld regularly as they can boost the participants’ English speaking skill.
McDuffie, Andrea; Machalicek, Wendy; Bullard, Lauren; Nelson, Sarah; Mello, Melissa; Tempero-Feigles, Robyn; Castignetti, Nancy; Abbeduto, Leonard
Using a single case design, a parent-mediated spoken language intervention was delivered to three mothers and their school-aged sons with fragile X syndrome, the leading inherited cause of intellectual disability. The intervention was embedded in the context of shared story-telling using wordless picture books and targeted three empirically-derived language support strategies. All sessions were implemented via distance video-teleconferencing. Parent education sessions were followed by 12 weekly clinician coaching and feedback sessions. Data was collected weekly during independent homework and clinician observation sessions. Relative to baseline, mothers increased their use of targeted strategies and dyads increased the frequency and duration of story-related talking. Generalized effects of the intervention on lexical diversity and grammatical complexity were observed. Implications for practice are discussed. PMID:27119214
Yunisrina Qismullah Yusuf
Full Text Available This study focuses on the semantic prosodies of the word ¡°robot¡± from words that colligates it in data of the spoken form. The data is collected from a lecturer.s talk discussing two topics which are about man and machines in perfect harmony and the effective temperature of workplaces. For annotation, UCREL CLAWS5 Tagset is used, with Tagset C5 to select output style of horizontal. The design of corpus used is by ICE. It reveals that more positive semantic prosodies on the word ¡°robot¡± are presented in the data compared to negative, with 52 occurrences discovered for positive (94,5% and 3 occurrences discovered for negative (5,5%. Words mostly collocated with ¡°robot¡± in the data are service with 8 collocations, machines with 20 collocations, surgical system with 15 collocations and intelligence with 13 collocations.
Alotaibi, Yousef Ajami; Hussain, Amir
Arabic is one of the world's oldest languages and is currently the second most spoken language in terms of number of speakers. However, it has not received much attention from the traditional speech processing research community. This study is specifically concerned with the analysis of vowels in modern standard Arabic dialect. The first and second formant values in these vowels are investigated and the differences and similarities between the vowels are explored using consonant-vowels-consonant (CVC) utterances. For this purpose, an HMM based recognizer was built to classify the vowels and the performance of the recognizer analyzed to help understand the similarities and dissimilarities between the phonetic features of vowels. The vowels are also analyzed in both time and frequency domains, and the consistent findings of the analysis are expected to facilitate future Arabic speech processing tasks such as vowel and speech recognition and classification.
Caroline M. Whiting
Full Text Available Rapid and automatic processing of grammatical complexity is argued to take place during speech comprehension, engaging a left-lateralised fronto-temporal language network. Here we address how neural activity in these regions is modulated by the grammatical properties of spoken words. We used combined magneto- and electroencephalography (MEG, EEG to delineate the spatiotemporal patterns of activity that support the recognition of morphologically complex words in English with inflectional (-s and derivational (-er affixes (e.g. bakes, baker. The mismatch negativity (MMN, an index of linguistic memory traces elicited in a passive listening paradigm, was used to examine the neural dynamics elicited by morphologically complex words. Results revealed an initial peak 130-180 ms after the deviation point with a major source in left superior temporal cortex. The localisation of this early activation showed a sensitivity to two grammatical properties of the stimuli: 1 the presence of morphological complexity, with affixed words showing increased left-laterality compared to non-affixed words; and 2 the grammatical category, with affixed verbs showing greater left-lateralisation in inferior frontal gyrus compared to affixed nouns (bakes vs. beaks. This automatic brain response was additionally sensitive to semantic coherence (the meaning of the stem vs. the meaning of the whole form in fronto-temporal regions. These results demonstrate that the spatiotemporal pattern of neural activity in spoken word processing is modulated by the presence of morphological structure, predominantly engaging the left-hemisphere’s fronto-temporal language network, and does not require focused attention on the linguistic input.
Deng, Zhizhou; Chandrasekaran, Bharath; Wang, Suiping; Wong, Patrick C M
A major challenge in language learning studies is to identify objective, pre-training predictors of success. Variation in the low-frequency fluctuations (LFFs) of spontaneous brain activity measured by resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (RS-fMRI) has been found to reflect individual differences in cognitive measures. In the present study, we aimed to investigate the extent to which initial spontaneous brain activity is related to individual differences in spoken language learning. We acquired RS-fMRI data and subsequently trained participants on a sound-to-word learning paradigm in which they learned to use foreign pitch patterns (from Mandarin Chinese) to signal word meaning. We performed amplitude of spontaneous low-frequency fluctuation (ALFF) analysis, graph theory-based analysis, and independent component analysis (ICA) to identify functional components of the LFFs in the resting-state. First, we examined the ALFF as a regional measure and showed that regional ALFFs in the left superior temporal gyrus were positively correlated with learning performance, whereas ALFFs in the default mode network (DMN) regions were negatively correlated with learning performance. Furthermore, the graph theory-based analysis indicated that the degree and local efficiency of the left superior temporal gyrus were positively correlated with learning performance. Finally, the default mode network and several task-positive resting-state networks (RSNs) were identified via the ICA. The "competition" (i.e., negative correlation) between the DMN and the dorsal attention network was negatively correlated with learning performance. Our results demonstrate that a) spontaneous brain activity can predict future language learning outcome without prior hypotheses (e.g., selection of regions of interest--ROIs) and b) both regional dynamics and network-level interactions in the resting brain can account for individual differences in future spoken language learning success
Deng, Zhizhou; Chandrasekaran, Bharath; Wang, Suiping; Wong, Patrick C.M.
A major challenge in language learning studies is to identify objective, pre-training predictors of success. Variation in the low-frequency fluctuations (LFFs) of spontaneous brain activity measured by resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (RS-fMRI) has been found to reflect individual differences in cognitive measures. In the present study, we aimed to investigate the extent to which initial spontaneous brain activity is related to individual differences in spoken language learning. We acquired RS-fMRI data and subsequently trained participants on a sound-to-word learning paradigm in which they learned to use foreign pitch patterns (from Mandarin Chinese) to signal word meaning. We performed amplitude of spontaneous low-frequency fluctuation (ALFF) analysis, graph theory-based analysis, and independent component analysis (ICA) to identify functional components of the LFFs in the resting-state. First, we examined the ALFF as a regional measure and showed that regional ALFFs in the left superior temporal gyrus were positively correlated with learning performance, whereas ALFFs in the default mode network (DMN) regions were negatively correlated with learning performance. Furthermore, the graph theory-based analysis indicated that the degree and local efficiency of the left superior temporal gyrus were positively correlated with learning performance. Finally, the default mode network and several task-positive resting-state networks (RSNs) were identified via the ICA. The “competition” (i.e., negative correlation) between the DMN and the dorsal attention network was negatively correlated with learning performance. Our results demonstrate that a) spontaneous brain activity can predict future language learning outcome without prior hypotheses (e.g., selection of regions of interest – ROIs) and b) both regional dynamics and network-level interactions in the resting brain can account for individual differences in future spoken language learning success
Jansen, Stefanie; Wesselmeier, Hendrik; de Ruiter, Jan P; Mueller, Horst M
Even though research in turn-taking in spoken dialogues is now abundant, a typical EEG-signature associated with the anticipation of turn-ends has not yet been identified until now. The purpose of this study was to examine if readiness potentials (RP) can be used to study the anticipation of turn-ends by using it in a motoric finger movement and articulatory movement task. The goal was to determine the preconscious onset of turn-end anticipation in early, preconscious turn-end anticipation processes by the simultaneous registration of EEG measures (RP) and behavioural measures (anticipation timing accuracy, ATA). For our behavioural measures, we used both button-press and verbal response ("yes"). In the experiment, 30 subjects were asked to listen to auditorily presented utterances and press a button or utter a brief verbal response when they expected the end of the turn. During the task, a 32-channel-EEG signal was recorded. The results showed that the RPs during verbal- and button-press-responses developed similarly and had an almost identical time course: the RP signals started to develop 1170 vs. 1190 ms before the behavioural responses. Until now, turn-end anticipation is usually studied using behavioural methods, for instance by measuring the anticipation timing accuracy, which is a measurement that reflects conscious behavioural processes and is insensitive to preconscious anticipation processes. The similar time course of the recorded RP signals for both verbal- and button-press responses provide evidence for the validity of using RPs as an online marker for response preparation in turn-taking and spoken dialogue research. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Strori, Dorina; Zaar, Johannes; Cooke, Martin; Mattys, Sven L
Recent evidence has shown that nonlinguistic sounds co-occurring with spoken words may be retained in memory and affect later retrieval of the words. This sound-specificity effect shares many characteristics with the classic voice-specificity effect. In this study, we argue that the sound-specificity effect is conditional upon the context in which the word and sound coexist. Specifically, we argue that, besides co-occurrence, integrality between words and sounds is a crucial factor in the emergence of the effect. In two recognition-memory experiments, we compared the emergence of voice and sound specificity effects. In Experiment 1 , we examined two conditions where integrality is high. Namely, the classic voice-specificity effect (Exp. 1a) was compared with a condition in which the intensity envelope of a background sound was modulated along the intensity envelope of the accompanying spoken word (Exp. 1b). Results revealed a robust voice-specificity effect and, critically, a comparable sound-specificity effect: A change in the paired sound from exposure to test led to a decrease in word-recognition performance. In the second experiment, we sought to disentangle the contribution of integrality from a mere co-occurrence context effect by removing the intensity modulation. The absence of integrality led to the disappearance of the sound-specificity effect. Taken together, the results suggest that the assimilation of background sounds into memory cannot be reduced to a simple context effect. Rather, it is conditioned by the extent to which words and sounds are perceived as integral as opposed to distinct auditory objects.
Ravid, Dorit; Zilberbuch, Shoshana
This study examined the distribution of two Hebrew nominal structures-N-N compounds and denominal adjectives-in spoken and written texts of two genres produced by 90 native-speaking participants in three age groups: eleven/twelve-year-olds (6th graders), sixteen/seventeen-year-olds (11th graders), and adults. The two constructions are later linguistic acquisitions, part of the profound lexical and syntactic changes that occur in language development during the school years. They are investigated in the context of learning how modality (speech vs. writing) and genre (biographical vs. expository texts) affect the production of continuous discourse. Participants were asked to speak and write about two topics, one biographical, describing the life of a public figure or of a friend; and another, expository, discussing one of ten topics such as the cinema, cats, or higher academic studies. N-N compounding was found to be the main device of complex subcategorization in Hebrew discourse, unrelated to genre. Denominal adjectives are a secondary subcategorizing device emerging only during the late teen years, a linguistic resource untapped until very late, more restricted to specific text types than N-N compounding, and characteristic of expository writing. Written texts were found to be denser than spoken texts lexically and syntactically as measured by number of novel N-N compounds and denominal adjectives per clause, and in older age groups this difference was found to be more pronounced. The paper contributes to our understanding of how the syntax/lexicon interface changes with age, modality and genre in the context of later language acquisition.
Vertical disintegration in most industries and the globalization of markets has led to significant changes in the pattern of international division of labour among manufacturing firms. At the same time increased competition from low cost producers, exchange rate constraints, the opening up of CEE countries have had huge consequences for the Italian industrial system. This paper deals with the Veneto footwear, furniture and refrigeraion industries and examines the effects of foreign direct inv...
MONICA PÂRVU; CORINA AURELIA ZUGRAVU; IOANA CRISTINA ANDRONIE; CARMEN BERGHEŞ; IUDITH IPATE
The study was conducted on bee families of Apis mellifera carpatica and Apis mellifera ligustica breeds. The bees were housed in multi-storey hives. The experimental period was of 6 months. The resistance to wintering was evaluated on the basis of several apicultural indicators: mortality, feed intake during the winter, general state of the family. Mortality was 35% during wintering for the Carpathian bee and 52% for the Italian bee. The differences were very significant (p≤0.001). When winte...
Magnussen, Svein; Safer, Martin A; Sartori, Giuseppe; Wise, Richard A
We surveyed 100 Italian defense attorneys about their knowledge and beliefs about factors affecting eyewitness accuracy. The results of similar surveys show that U.S. defense attorneys were significantly more knowledgeable than other legal professionals, including U.S. prosecutors and U.S. and European judges. The present survey of Italian defense attorneys produced similar results. However, the results suggest that the defense attorney's superior performance may be due at least in part to their skepticism of eyewitness testimony rather than their greater knowledge of eyewitness factors.
Magnussen, Svein; Safer, Martin A.; Sartori, Giuseppe; Wise, Richard A.
We surveyed 100 Italian defense attorneys about their knowledge and beliefs about factors affecting eyewitness accuracy. The results of similar surveys show that U.S. defense attorneys were significantly more knowledgeable than other legal professionals, including U.S. prosecutors and U.S. and European judges. The present survey of Italian defense attorneys produced similar results. However, the results suggest that the defense attorney’s superior performance may be due at least in part to their skepticism of eyewitness testimony rather than their greater knowledge of eyewitness factors. PMID:23720639
Piazzi, Andrea; Piazzi, Gioia; Testa, Luana; Coccanari dè Fornari, Maria Antonietta
The article reconstruct the situation of Italian psychiatry around 1930, using as unusual sources the pages of the Enciclopedia Italiana di Scienze, Lettere e Arti. This important work, conceived in 1925 and finished in 1937, is due - as well known - to the strong interest of Giovanni Gentile and to his capacity to involve in the project a great part of Italian intellectual world, without any ideological preclusion. The section devoted to Medical Sciences, including Psychiatry, was directed by Nicola Pende (1880-1970) and Giacinto Viola (1870-1943). A prevalent positivistic approach to science is well testified by their specific attention to preventive and social medicine, researches in Genetics and in biotypological constitutions. Psycopathological and psycological lemmas are very limited, underlying the medical disinterest towards contemporary philosophy and psycology.
Coratza, Paola; Panizza, Mario
Over 220 years ago Johann Wolfgang von Goethe undertook a nearly two-years long and fascinating journey to Italy, a destination dreamed for a long time by the great German writer. During his journey from Alps to Sicily Goethe reflects on landscape, geology, morphology of "Il Bel Paese", sometimes providing detailed descriptions and acute observations concerning the great and enduring laws by which the earth and all within it are governed. He was an observer, with the eye of the geologist and landscape painter, as he himself stated, and therefore he had a 360 degree focus on all parts of the territory. From the Brenner Pass to Sicily, Goethe reflects on landscape, contrasting morphologies, the genesis of territories, providing detailed descriptions useful for reconstructing the conditions of the territory and crops of the late 18th century. His diary is a description of the impressions he received from the country and its people, mingled with reflections upon art, science and literature. Goethe studied mineralogical and geological phenomena and drew up notes on the life of the people, the climate and the plants. On various scientific occasions and, in particular, within the framework of the Italian Association "Geologia & Turismo", of the Working Group "Geomorphosites" of the International Association of Geomorphologists and the International Year of Planet Earth, the opportunity to re-examine Goethe's travels in Italy from a geological viewpoint was recognised. In the present paper an attempt was made to reproduce the geotourism itinerary ante litteram of the writer to Italy, one of the most important tourist destination worldwide, thanks to its rich cultural and natural heritage and the outstanding aesthetic qualities of the complex natural landscape. This project was essentially conceived with a twofold purpose. First of all, an attempt was made to reproduce the journey of a great writer, as an example of description of landscape perceived and described as
Mattei, Giorgio; Ferrari, Silvia; Pingani, Luca; Rigatelli, Marco
To report on the effects on health that the 2008 Great Recession is producing in Italy, by comparing the consistency of Italian data with general observations reported in the scientific literature, and by pointing out consequences on the rates of all-cause mortality, cardiovascular mortality, male suicidal behaviours, daytime alcohol drinking and traffic fatalities. This is an ecological study in which MEDLINE, PsycINFO and PubMed were searched for the literature with combinations of the following keywords: economic recession, financial crisis, unemployment, health, suicide and mental health. Data from two Italian government agencies (Italian Institute of Statistics, ISTAT, and Italian Agency of Drugs, AIFA) in the years from 2000 to 2010 were obtained and analysed, by producing models of multiple linear regressions. After the recession onset, all-cause mortality remained stable, and was not associated with the economic fluctuations. Differently, cardiovascular mortality was associated with the rate of unemployment, and showed a significant increase in 2010. Alcohol consumption increased in 2009, the year with the worst real GDP decrease (-5.1 %). Though the total rate of suicide was not associated with the economic situation, male completed and attempted suicides due to financial crisis were significantly associated with the rate of unemployment and the real GDP. The increasing diffusion of antidepressants was not associated with a lowering of the rate of suicide. The data on the Italian situation here discussed are sufficiently reliable to conclude that a link exists between the ongoing economic recession and health and mental health of Italians. Further research is needed to understand more in detail and with stronger reliability such link, to support primary and secondary preventive interventions and orient the development of effective sociopolitical interventions.
Full Text Available A Central location test was performed to compare heavy Apennine lamb meat to New Zealander lamb meat in order to create a Protected Geographical Indication for lamb meat. Roasted New-Zealander and heavy Apennine lamb legs were tested by 106 consumers according to the following experimental plan: blind phase (B without any possibility to recognize the meat type tasted, expected phase (E in which were described the characteristics of the two types of meat without tasting, informed phase (I in which the tasted meat was recognized in provenience. Results showed in a nine point scale of appreciation for flavour, juiciness and overall pleasure, the highest values in Apennine lamb meat. B test showed the highest value for overall pleasure (P<0.01. Interaction, Italian lamb x Informed test showed the highest values for all the parameters except for overall liking for which Italian lamb x E test showed the highest values. About foreign lamb meat B test showed higher values than I and E test. Information about lamb meat origin showed disconfirmation for tenderness in Italian lamb meat. Foreign lamb meat showed a positive disconfirmation for flavour and overall pleasure, that confirm the better perception by consumers in blind consumption than in the informed one.
Camerini, Anne-Linda; Schulz, Peter J
To explore micro-cultural differences in patients' need for information provision, perceived participation in decision making, and related concepts during the doctor-patient consultation between French- and Italian-speaking patients in Switzerland. In 2012, 153 French- and 120 Italian-speaking patients with chronic low back pain (cLBP) were surveyed on their need for information provision, perceived participation in decision making, cLBP knowledge, psychological empowerment, and trust in their doctor. T-tests and regression analyses with interaction terms were performed. Results show that French- and Italian-speaking patients significantly differed in their participation in decision making, with French-speaking patients reporting higher involvement. Need for information provision was related to empowerment among French- and to trust among Italian-speaking patients. For participation in decision making, trust was the only related concept among French-, and cLBP knowledge among Italian-speaking patients. Significant interaction terms indicate a moderation of micro-cultural background. Findings point towards differences in the relationships between individual patient characteristics (i.e. knowledge, empowerment) and relational doctor-patient characteristics (i.e. trust) and patients' need for information provision and participation in decision making between French- and Italian-speaking patients in Switzerland. Doctors should be aware of these differences when dealing with patients of different micro-cultural backgrounds. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.
Ambrosini, G.; Ciancia, A.; Pede, G.
Current hydrogen automotive fuels research studies being conducted by ENEA (Italian Agency for New Technology, Energy and the Environment) are being targeted towards the development of hydrogen fueled vans and buses for use in highly polluted urban environments where the innovative vehicles' air pollution abatement characteristics would justify their high operating costs as compared with those of conventional automotive alternatives. The demonstration vehicle being used in the experimental studies and performance tests is a two liter minibus with a spark ignition engine power rated at 55 kW with gasoline operation and 45 kW with hydrogen. Detailed design notes are given regarding the retrofitting of the minibus chassis to house the aluminium gas storage tanks and the adaptation of the engine to operate with compressed hydrogen. Attention is given to efforts being made to resolve combustion control and fueling problems. Focus is on the progress being made in the development of an efficient and safe electronically controlled fuel injection system
This book addresses a variety of topics within the growing discipline of Archaeoastronomy, focusing especially on Archaeoastronomy in Sicily and the Mediterranean and Cultural Astronomy. A further priority is discussion of the astronomical and statistical methods used today to ascertain the degree of reliability of the chronological and cultural definition of sites and artifacts of archaeoastronomical interest. The contributions were all delivered at the XVth Congress of the Italian Society of Archaeoastronomy (SIA), held under the rubric "The Light, the Stones and the Sacred" – a theme inspired by the International Year of Light 2015, organized by UNESCO. The full meaning of many ancient monuments can only be understood by examining their relation to light, given the effects that light radiation produces in “interacting” with lithic structures. Moreover, in addition to manifestations of the sacred through the medium of light (hierophanies), there are many ties between temples, tombs, megalithic structu...
Full Text Available This essay analyzes the forms of co-creation which have involved the operators in broadcast communication, the new creators of non-institutional content and the users in the context of transmedia production, with a particular focus on the Italian situation. The first part of the essay analyzes and compares the definitions of transmedia in literature, aiming to identify the specific characteristics of communication strategies which identify it and to clarify the differences with the concept of cross-media, which is often used wrongly as a synonym. In the second part of the essay, the main study models of transmedia structures in literature are used in order to analyze some emblematic cases of transmedia co-creation which have experimented some collaborative solutions over the last decade in Italy, leading to the production of contents designed for a distribution on multiple platforms, used in a coordinated and complementary manner.
Siciliano, Pietro; Germani, Michele; Monteriù, Andrea
This book presents the refereed proceedings of the Fourth Italian Forum on Ambient Assisted Living (AAL), held in Ancona, Italy, in October 2013. A wide range of issues are covered, and new technological developments are described which will support the autonomy and independence of individuals with special needs through an innovative and integrated approach, designed to respond to the socio-economic challenges of an aging population. Topics addressed include: health and well-being, prevention and rehabilitation, and support for care providers; active aging and its social implications; services for the frail elderly with health problems and their families; nutrition; ICT platforms/technologies for the benefit of the elderly; home automation and control technologies (autonomy, safety, and energy saving); smart cities and smart communities; telemedicine, telerehabilitation, and telecare; mobility, participation, and social inclusion; games and fun for the elderly; building design; social housing; interface desig...
Collection and analysis of operating experience from the Italian plants and utilization of abroad data both to plants in operation and in construction are presented. Some results are also referred, aimed to evidence the role of the international cooperation to safe operation of nuclear plants. The approach to the Trend and Pattern analyses is described as well, and the use of computerized techniques of analysis on personal computer. Finally on going activities are introduced, specifically application of operating experience of plants in operation to small sized reactors and to ones with more intrinsic safety characteristics; review of the reporting system for future application and comparative analysis of the different realization of selected safety systems
Cesáreo Calvo Rigual
Full Text Available Apart from containing different kinds of lexicon, such as the essential, specialised and colloquial lexicons and so forth, bilingual dictionaries should also include the geographic variations of a language, being an important part of its lexicon as a whole. With regard to Spanish language this matter is even more important. In fact, its regional varieties have always played an important role, especially within Latin America. All this resulted in the great importance that such varieties have gained in many works (such as dictionaries, grammars and orthography manuals promoted by the academies of the Spanish language, over the last few decades. In this work the presence of Latin American expressions in three large bilingual Italian-Spanish and Spanish-Italian dictionaries (published by Hoepli, Garzanti and Zanichelli publishers over the last few years will be analysed. Our study focuses on three matters: a the analysis of the presence/absence of the words that are used to designate the same object, that is, the ‘bus’; b the analysis of lexicographic labels which indicate the Latin American expressions, as well as the frequency of such labels; and c their use within a specific segment of the three dictionaries. Very different results have been found. One of the dictionaries (Garzanti appears to be the most complete by far, if we consider both the variety of the labels that have been used and their frequency. On the other hand, the other two dictionaries only use one generic label for all Latin American expressions. In addition, in them such expressions are used with a much lower frequency. This sort of situation is not acceptable to us, since nowadays-bilingual lexicographers can count on many updated works that contain the lexicon of Latin American varieties of Spanish language. Lexicographers should use such works in order to offer a more complete representation of the Spanish lexicon as a whole.
Full Text Available In May 2004 the Balì Museum, Planetarium and interactive science museum, was opened to the public in Italy: 35 hands-on exhibits designed according to the interactive tradition of the Exploratorium in San Francisco, an astronomic observatory for educational activities, a Planetarium with 70 places. With a total investment of about three million euros, about two thirds of which were spent on restructuring the splendid eighteenth-century villa in which it is housed, the undertaking may be considered a small one in comparison with other European science centres. Three million euros: perhaps enough to cover the cost of only the splendid circular access ramp to the brand-new Cosmocaixa in Barcelona, an investment of one hundred million euros. But the interesting aspect of the story of the Balì Museum (but also of other Italian stories, as we shall see lies in the fact that this lively and advanced science centre stands in the bucolic region of the Marches, next to a small town of only 800 inhabitants (Saltara, in the Province of Pesaro and Urbino, in a municipal territory that has a total of 5000. Whereas in Italy the projects for science centres comparable with the Catalan one, for example projects for Rome and Turin, never get off the ground, smaller ones are opening in small and medium-sized towns: why is this? And what does the unusual location of the centres entail for science communication in Italy? This Focus does not claim to tell the whole truth about Italian interactive museums, but it does offer some phenomenological cues to open a debate on the cultural, economic and political premises that favour their lives.
Full Text Available This paper investigates the present scenario of the non-professional theater associations in Italy so as to understand their current form of organization. The study focuses on the changes that have characterized in time the non-professional associations (due also to the improvement of the legislation regulating the no profit sector and the social role in contemporary local communities. The survey was conducted within the two most relevant Italian associations of non-professional theater: the Italian Federation of non-professional Theatre (Federazione Italiana Teatro Amatori and the Italian Union of Free Theatre (Unione Italiana Libero Teatro.
Malek, Ziga; Scolobig, Anna; Schröter, Dagmar
In the last two decades, socio-economic changes in Europe have had a significant effect on land cover changes, but it is unclear how this has affected mountain areas. We focus on two mountain areas: the eastern Italian Alps and the Romanian Curvature Carpathians. We classified land cover from Earth
This article focuses on the representation of urban, suburban, and rural spaces in contemporary Italian literature, by examining a corpus of fifteen titles published between 2004 and 2015. 2004 saw the start of the Laterza series Contromano, which marked a significant increase in the amount of texts
Full Text Available This paper aims to provide a brief assessment of the legal framework of the newly established metropolitan cities in the Italian domestic legal order. After an historical overview of previous attempts to set up metropolitan cities in Italy (1, it summarizes the main statutory provisions of the Delrio Law (No. 56/2014 through which metropolitan cities finally came into operation (2 and it provides an analysis of its implementation, thereby attempting to make clear whether increased institutional pluralism and differentiation in the local government system will strengthen or weaken Italian regionalism (3. The conclusion will argue that, while the enactment of local government reforms combined with the entering into force of a significant constitutional amendment will increasingly diminish the role of the Regions, metropolitan cities, due to their ambivalent nature, still lack any propulsive thrust and face the risk of being marginalized until a consistent legal framework for their proper funding is laid down (4.
Angelucci, Erika; Orlando, Ambrogio; Ardizzone, Sandro; Guidi, Luisa; Sorrentino, Dario; Fries, Walter; Astegiano, Marco; Sociale, Orsola; Cesarini, Monica; Renna, Sara; Cassinotti, Andrea; Marzo, Manuela; Quaglia, Anna; Sergi, Maria Donata; Simondi, Daniele; Vernia, Piero; Malesci, Alberto; Danese, Silvio
The internet has been increasingly used as a resource for accessing health-related information. A recent US survey found that approximately half of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) patients in an IBD clinic use the internet to gather IBD-specific information. The aim of this study was to evaluate the use of the internet among Italian IBD patients. The study was performed in seven Italian IBD referral centers by using a 28-item anonymous questionnaire. In all, 495 questionnaires were returned for analysis, in which 305 of 495 patients (61.6%) indicated that they are able to access the internet. A large proportion used the internet to gather health-related information (180 of 305, 59.1%) and IBD-related information (226 of 305, 74.2%). The use of the internet increased significantly with level of education (Pinternet to gather IBD-related information increased significantly with the increase of disease activity and severity. Approximately half of the patients in Italian IBD referral centers used the internet to gather IBD-related information. This use positively correlated with disease activity and severity. The great majority of patients indicated that it was very important for IBD referral centers to have their own IBD-dedicated website.
Brugnolo, A; De Carli, F; Accardo, J; Amore, M; Bosia, L E; Bruzzaniti, C; Cappa, S F; Cocito, L; Colazzo, G; Ferrara, M; Ghio, L; Magi, E; Mancardi, G L; Nobili, F; Pardini, M; Rissotto, R; Serrati, C; Girtler, N
The Stroop color and word test (SCWT) is widely used to evaluate attention, information processing speed, selective attention, and cognitive flexibility. Normative values for the Italian population are available only for selected age groups, or for the short version of the test. The aim of this study was to provide updated normal values for the full version, balancing groups across gender, age decades, and education. Two kinds of indexes were derived from the performance of 192 normal subjects, divided by decade (from 20 to 90) and level of education (4 levels: 3-5; 6-8; 9-13; >13 years). They were (i) the correct answers achieved for each table in the first 30 s (word items, WI; color items, CI; color word items, CWI) and (ii) the total time required for reading the three tables (word time, WT; color time, CT; color word time, CWT). For each index, the regression model was evaluated using age, education, and gender as independent variables. The normative data were then computed following the equivalent scores method. In the regression model, age and education significantly influenced the performance in each of the 6 indexes, whereas gender had no significant effect. This study confirms the effect of age and education on the main indexes of the Stroop test and provides updated normative data for an Italian healthy population, well balanced across age, education, and gender. It will be useful to Italian researchers studying attentional functions in health and disease.
Full Text Available The essay reconstructs the various phases of the discovery of John Dewey’s ideas on Education and the spread of their influence throughout Italian pedagogical circles from the end of the Second World War to the 1970s. Several Italian intellectual pioneers discerned within Dewey’s theories significant overtones of democratic political activism, and the potential for developing innovative practices by which the obsolete education system of the day could be modernized, and the demands for better schooling being put forward by many could be met. In the immediate aftermath of the Second World War, one such pioneer was Ernesto Codignola, a shrewd educational theorist who used the journal «Scuola e Città» (Schooling and the City, published by La Nuova Italia publishing house, as a mouthpiece for his ideas. Once the American philosopher’s ideas had been rediscovered, his most significant works were quickly translated and published, and then subjected to a flurry of detailed critical analysis and interpretation. During the 1960s and ‘70s, much of the research into Dewey’s theories was carried out in Florence, in particular by Lamberto Borghi, who interpreted them as the blueprint for a secular, democratic system of education that could be applied across the Italian peninsula.
Full Text Available The Italian Parliament has excluded hospital physicians from the application of the European Work Time Directive (EWTD, which imposes a maximum workweek of 48 h and compulsory resting periods. This resulted in extended and excessive work time for the category. This paper is aimed at evaluating the impact of this legislation gap, by assessing the presence of excessive work-related stress and risk for burnout syndrome among Italian physicians working in public hospitals. This observational study is based on an on-line survey conducted on a sample of 1925 Italian doctors (covering a wide range of age, work experience and contractual positions from October 2014 to February 2015. The questionnaire included 30 questions concerning their personal and professional life (e.g., assessment of workloads, number of uncomfortable or extra shifts, unused days-off, etc.. On the basis of the results, it can be inferred that the average Italian doctor working in public hospitals is under considerable stress at work with negative consequences on his health. He is exposed to high risk of suffering from sleep disorders and cardiovascular diseases (due to the lack of time for private practice and eating regular meals. Overall, his perception is that his job worsens his quality of life. This study shows the relevance of the risk of burnout among Italian physicians employed in public hospitals due to severe workload and work conditions. The resulting impact on the quality of care and the significant cost involved - both in human and economic terms - calls for significant emergency measures by the Italian health work organization. An important increase and prolonged working time is associated with a worsening of the objective cognitive performance and an increase of clinical risk, but also to an increased risk of diseases for operators and of the burnout syndrome. Our survey shows that lack of application of the EWTD has adverse effects on the quality of life and
Agnoli, Claudia; Krogh, Vittorio; Grioni, Sara; Sieri, Sabina; Palli, Domenico; Masala, Giovanna; Sacerdote, Carlotta; Vineis, Paolo; Tumino, Rosario; Frasca, Graziella; Pala, Valeria; Berrino, Franco; Chiodini, Paolo; Mattiello, Amalia; Panico, Salvatore
Stroke is a major cause of death. Several foods and nutrients have been linked to stroke, but their effects may be best investigated considering the entire diet. In the present EPICOR study, we investigated the association between stroke and adherence to 4 a priori-defined dietary patterns: Healthy Eating Index 2005 (HEI-2005), Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH), Greek Mediterranean Index, and Italian Mediterranean Index. We followed 40,681 volunteers and estimated the HR and 95%CI for stroke according to dietary pattern by using multivariate Cox models with adjustment for risk factors. During a mean follow-up of 7.9 y, 178 stroke cases were diagnosed (100 ischemic, 47 hemorrhagic). Scores of 3 dietary patterns (not HEI) were inversely associated with risk of all types of stroke, with the strongest association for the Italian Index [HR = 0.47 (95%CI = 0.30-0.75); third vs. first tertile]. All patterns were significantly inversely associated with ischemic stroke except the Greek Index, with the strongest association for the Italian Index [HR = 0.37 (95%CI = 0.19-0.70); third vs. first tertile]. Only the Italian Index tended to be inversely associated with hemorrhagic stroke [HR = 0.51 (95%CI = 0.22-1.20); P = 0.07)]. These epidemiological findings suggest that adherence to any one dietary pattern investigated would protect against at least one type of stroke. For our Italian population, a diet with a high score on the Italian Index was associated with the greatest risk reduction, probably because it was conceived to capture healthy eating in the context of foods typically available in Italy.
Sterpetti, Antonio V; De Toma, Giorgio; De Cesare, Alessandro
Thyroid swellings in the art of the Italian Renaissance are sporadically reported in the medical literature. Six hundred paintings and sculptures from the Italian Renaissance, randomly selected, were analyzed to determine the prevalence of personages with thyroid swellings and its meaning. The prevalence of personages with thyroid swellings in the art of Italian Renaissance is much higher than previously thought. This phenomenon was probably secondary to iodine deficiency. The presence of personages with thyroid swelling was related to specific meanings the artists wanted to show in their works. Even if the function and the role of the thyroid were discovered only after thyroidectomy was started to be performed, at the beginning of the 19th century, artists of the Italian Renaissance had the intuition that thyroid swellings were related to specific psychological conditions. Artistic intuition and sensibility often comes before scientific demonstration, and it should be a guide for science development. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
French researchers working on the Edelweiss detector under the Alps, have been unable to detect a single particle of dark matter with the characteristics claimed to have been found by an Italian team two years ago (1 page).
Cherubini, Jon C., Comp.
This quarterly bibliography of Italian studies in North America includes books, bibliographies, and reviews of comparative literature studies, translations, and publications on art, music, philosophy, history, cinema, and sociology, which are closely related to literature. (SW)
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This data set consists of snow observations for 18 stations in the western Italian Alps. Two types of data are included: monthly snowfall amounts and monthly snow...
Drey, R E
Although Italian drug jar painters generally devised original compositions for the ornamentation of their products, on occasion they derived their subjects from printed sources. Printed sources used by drug jar artists of the Renaissance include wood-engraved Italian tarot cards and wood-engraved illustrations by Hans Sebald Beham and Bernard Salomon in miniature bibles published in the sixteenth century in Frankfurt and in Lyons respectively.
Paolo RICCI; Tiziana LANDI
The present paper deals with a critically Italian question with regard to the actual debate about public utility sector. The paper tries to point out positive effects that a suitable accountability system can produce in the management of local public utilities in order to bridge the gap between Public Utilities Companies and their stakeholder. In the paper the policies, the strategies and all accountability tools of some Italian listed public utilities companies are analyzed. The aim of the p...
Carrozza, Chiara; Fantini, Emanuele
The article contributes to the debate on the commons as a political strategy to counter the privatisation of water services by focusing on the experience of the Italian water movement. It addresses the question: how has the notion of the commons – popularly associated with the Global South – been understood, adopted and translated into practice by social movements in a European country like Italy? We identify three different understandings of the commons coexisting within the Italian water mo...
Ferro, R; Besostri, A; Giuca, M R; Docimo, R; Gatto, R; Marzo, G
This paper represents the outcome of the meetings of the Committee composed by Pedodontists (SIOI - Italian Society of Paediatric Dentistry) and Paediatricians (FIMP - Italian Association of Paediatricians) with the aim to share an evidence- based common approach in caries prevention during childhood and adolescence. The most important topic was an update on fluoride administration methods in order to minimise the risk of fluorosis and maximise its caries-preventive effect. The conclusions of this work are exposed in a synoptic table.