Infants of depressed mothers, although competent learners, fail to learn in response to their own mothers' infant-directed speech.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

Depressed mothers use less of the exaggerated prosody that is typical of infant-directed (ID) speech than do nondepressed mothers. We investigated the consequences of this reduced perceptual salience in ID speech for infant learning. Infants of nondepressed mothers readily learned that their mothers' speech signaled a face, whereas infants of depressed mothers failed to learn that their mothers' speech signaled the face. Infants of depressed mothers did, however, show strong learning in response to speech produced by an unfamiliar nondepressed mother. These outcomes indicate that the reduced perceptual salience of depressed mothers' ID speech could lead to deficient learning in otherwise competent learners.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Kaplan, PS; Bachorowski, J-A; Smoski, MJ; Hudenko, WJ

Published Date

  • May 2002

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 13 / 3

Start / End Page

  • 268 - 271

PubMed ID

  • 12009049

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0956-7976

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1111/1467-9280.00449


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States