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Staiger, Anja; Schölderle, Theresa; Brendel, Bettina; Bötzel, Kai and Ziegler, Wolfram (2017): Oral Motor Abilities Are Task Dependent: A Factor Analytic Approach to Performance Rate. In: Journal of Motor Behavior, Vol. 49, No. 5: pp. 482-493

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Measures of performance rates in speech-like or volitional nonspeech oral motor tasks are frequently used to draw inferences about articulation rate abnormalities in patients with neurologic movement disorders. The study objective was to investigate the structural relationship between rate measures of speech and of oral motor behaviors different from speech. A total of 130 patients with neurologic movement disorders and 130 healthy subjects participated in the study. Rate data was collected for oral reading (speech), rapid syllable repetition (speech-like), and rapid single articulator movements (nonspeech). The authors used factor analysis to determine whether the different rate variables reflect the same or distinct constructs. The behavioral data were most appropriately captured by a measurement model in which the different task types loaded onto separate latent variables. The data on oral motor performance rates show that speech tasks and oral motor tasks such as rapid syllable repetition or repetitive single articulator movements measure separate traits.

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