This study examines relationships between executive functions (updating, shifting, and task switching) and spoken word. Participants complete three measures of executive functions and then are audiotaped while reciting a poem and giving a short speech. Audio tapes are analyzed for quality and number of speech errors. Results will be analyzed to determine which executive functions predict speaking ability. Data collection is ongoing, as this is a class project for Research Methods in Psychology.
Dr. Rachael Blasiman
Executive functions are basic processes that underlie thought and behavior. Three executive functions - updating, shifting, and task switching- have been identified. Past research has examined these functions in relationship to reading comprehension, mathematical understanding, intelligence, and learning disability. The current study aims to extend this research to spoken word. Participants completed measures of executive function, recited a poem, and provided a short speech. Audio recordings were analyzed for irregularities such as pauses, errors, and filler words. The results are discussed in terms of spontaneous dialogue, prepared speech, and the role of individual executive functions in spoken language.