Entrainment as a basis for co-ordinated actions in speech

Richard Ogden, Sarah Hawkins

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review


This paper asks how rhythmicity is used to manage speaker transition in spontaneous talk and how temporal alignment helps to achieve interactional alignment. 56 Question + Answer (Q+A) pairs were analysed. 44 (79%) Qs ended rhythmically: in their last few accented syllables, f0 prominences were quasi-periodic. Of the As to these rhythmic Qs, 32 (73%) began with the same periodicity as the Q. As with non-rhythmic entry into ‘turn space’ set up by a rhythmic Q were sequentially and interactionally complex. Rhythmic A entries included accented syllables, in-breaths, clicks and nods, suggesting ‘embodied’ rather than solely ‘linguistic’ temporal entrainment. Interactional alignment thus seems to exploit temporal entrainment in the vicinity of turn boundaries, like that established for musicians.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 10 Aug 2015
EventInternational Congress of the Phonetic Sciences - Glasgow, United Kingdom
Duration: 10 Aug 201514 Aug 2015


ConferenceInternational Congress of the Phonetic Sciences
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom


  • entrainment
  • rhythm
  • question
  • conversation
  • interaction
  • phonetics

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