Quantifying sources of variability in infancy research using the infant-directed speech preference

The ManyBabies Consortium, Michael C. Frank, Katherine Jane Alcock, Natalia Arias-Trejo, Gisa Aschersleben, Dare Baldwin, Stéphanie Barbu, Elika Bergelson, Christina Bergmann, Alexis K. Black, Ryan Blything, Maximilian P. Böhland, Petra Bolitho, Arielle Borovsky, Shannon M. Brady, Bettina Braun, Anna Brown, Krista Byers-Heinlein, Linda E. Campbell, Cara CashonMihye Choi, Joan Christodoulou, Laura K. Cirelli, Stefania Conte, Sara Cordes, Christopher Cox, Alejandrina Cristia, Rhodri Cusack, Catherine Davies, Maartje de Klerk, Claire Delle Luche, Laura de Ruiter, Dhanya Dinakar, Kate C. Dixon, Virginie Durier, Samantha Durrant, Christopher Fennell, Brock Ferguson, Alissa Ferry, Paula Fikkert, Teresa Flanagan, Caroline Floccia, Megan Foley, Tom Fritzsche, Rebecca L.A. Frost, Anja Gampe, Judit Gervain, Nayeli Gonzalez-Gomez, Anna Gupta, Laura E. Hahn, J. Kiley Hamlin, Erin E. Hannon, Naomi Havron, Jessica Hay, Mikołaj Hernik, Barbara Höhle, Derek M. Houston, Lauren H. Howard, Mitsuhiko Ishikawa, Itakura Shoji, Iain Jackson, Krisztina V. Jakobsen, Marianna Jartó, Scott Johnson, Caroline Junge, Didar Karadag, Natalia Kartushina, Danielle J. Kellier, Tamar Keren-Portnoy, Kelsey Klassen, Melissa Kline, Eon-Suk Ko, Jonathan F. Kominsky, Jessica E. Kosie, Haley E. Kragness, Haley E. Kragness, Andrea A. R. Krieger, Florian Krieger, Jill Lany, Roberto J. Lazo, Michelle Lee, Chloé Leservoisier, Claartje Levelt, Casey Lew-Williams, Matthias Lippold, Ulf Liszkowski, Liquan Liu, Steven G. Luke, Rebecca A. Lundwall, Viola Macchi Cassia, Nivedita Mani, Caterina Marino, Alia Martin, Meghan Mastroberardino, Victoria Mateu, Julien Mayor, Katharina Menn, Christine Michel, Yusuke Moriguchi, Benjamin Morris, Karli M. Nave, Thierry Nazzi, Claire Noble, Miriam A. Novack, Nonah M. Olesen, Adriel John Orena, Mitsuhiko Ota, Robin Panneton, Sara Parvanezadeh Esfahani, Markus Paulus, Carolina Pletti, Linda Polka, Christine Potter, Hugh Rabagliati, Shruthilaya Ramachandran, Jennifer L. Rennels, Greg D. Reynolds, Kelly C. Roth, Charlotte Rothwell, Doroteja Rubez, Yana Ryjova, Jenny Saffran, Ayumi Sato, Sophie Savelkouls, Adena Schachner, Graham Schafer, Melanie S. Schreiner, Amanda Seidl, Mohinish Shukla, Elizabeth A. Simpson, Leher Singh, Barbora Skarabela, Gaye Soley, Megha Sundara, Anna Theakston, Abbie Thompson, Laurel J. Trainor, Sandra E. Trehub, Anna S. Trøan, Angeline Sin-Mei Tsui, Katherine Twomey, Katie Von Holzen, Yuanyuan Wang, Sandra Waxman, Janet F. Werker, Stephanie Wermelinger, Alix Woolard, Daniel Yurovsky, Katharina Zahner, Martin Zettersten, Melanie Soderstrom

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Abstract

Psychological scientists have become increasingly concerned with issues related to methodology and replicability, and infancy researchers in particular face specific challenges related to replicability: For example, high-powered studies are difficult to conduct, testing conditions vary across labs, and different labs have access to different infant populations. Addressing these concerns, we report on a large-scale, multisite study aimed at (a) assessing the overall replicability of a single theoretically important phenomenon and (b) examining methodological, cultural, and developmental moderators. We focus on infants’ preference for infant-directed speech (IDS) over adult-directed speech (ADS). Stimuli of mothers speaking to their infants and to an adult in North American English were created using seminaturalistic laboratory-based audio recordings. Infants’ relative preference for IDS and ADS was assessed across 67 laboratories in North America, Europe, Australia, and Asia using the three common methods for measuring infants’ discrimination (head-turn preference, central fixation, and eye tracking). The overall meta-analytic effect size (Cohen’s d) was 0.35, 95% confidence interval = [0.29, 0.42], which was reliably above zero but smaller than the meta-analytic mean computed from previous literature (0.67). The IDS preference was significantly stronger in older children, in those children for whom the stimuli matched their native language and dialect, and in data from labs using the head-turn preference procedure. Together, these findings replicate the IDS preference but suggest that its magnitude is modulated by development, native-language experience, and testing procedure.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)24-52
Number of pages29
JournalAdvances in Methods and Practices in Psychological Science
Volume3
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 16 Mar 2020

Keywords

  • experimental methods
  • infant-directed speech
  • language acquisition
  • open data
  • open materials
  • preregistered
  • reproducibility
  • speech perception

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