Purpose: In this study, the authors aimed to investigate how listener training and the presence of intermediate acoustic cues influence transcription variability for conflicting cue speech stimuli.
Method: Twenty listeners with training in transcribing disordered speech, and 26 untrained listeners, were asked to make forced-choice labeling decisions for synthetic vowel-consonant-vowel (VCV) sequences "a doe" (/(sic)do/) and "a go" (/(sic)go/). Both the VC and CV transitions in these stimuli ranged through intermediate positions, from appropriate for /d/to appropriate for /g/.
Results: Both trained and untrained listeners gave more weight to the CV transitions than to the VC transitions. However, listener behavior was not uniform: The results showed a high level of inter- and intratranscriber inconsistency, with untrained listeners showing a nonsignificant tendency to be more influenced than trained listeners by CV transitions.
Conclusions: Listeners do not assign consistent categorical labels to the type of intermediate, conflicting transitional cues that were present in the stimuli used in the current study and that are also present in disordered articulations. Although listener inconsistency in assigning labels to intermediate productions is not increased as a result of phonetic training, neither is it reduced by such training.