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Listeners form average-based representations of individual voice identities

Lavan, N; Knight, S; McGettigan, C; (2019) Listeners form average-based representations of individual voice identities. Nature Communications , 10 , Article 2404. 10.1038/s41467-019-10295-w. Green open access

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Abstract

Models of voice perception propose that identities are encoded relative to an abstracted average or prototype. While there is some evidence for norm-based coding when learning to discriminate different voices, little is known about how the representation of an individual's voice identity is formed through variable exposure to that voice. In two experiments, we show evidence that participants form abstracted representations of individual voice identities based on averages, despite having never been exposed to these averages during learning. We created 3 perceptually distinct voice identities, fully controlling their within-person variability. Listeners first learned to recognise these identities based on ring-shaped distributions located around the perimeter of within-person voice spaces - crucially, these distributions were missing their centres. At test, listeners' accuracy for old/new judgements was higher for stimuli located on an untrained distribution nested around the centre of each ring-shaped distribution compared to stimuli on the trained ring-shaped distribution.

Type: Article
Title: Listeners form average-based representations of individual voice identities
Location: England
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1038/s41467-019-10295-w
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-019-10295-w
Language: English
Additional information: This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/.
Keywords: Human behaviour, Psychology
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences > Speech, Hearing and Phonetic Sciences
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10075938
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