A kinematic description of oromotor behaviors during the first year of life

By J.R. Green and E.M. Wilson


Developmental changes in lip and jaw kinematics are quantitatively described during the first year of life. Articulatory movements were recorded in five age groups at differing stages of early postnatal development using a 3D computerized motion capture system. Task-related and spontaneous lip and jaw movements were studied cross-sectionally. Prior to analysis, oromotor behaviors were categorized by the communicative or noncommunicative context in which they occurred (e.g., referential, emotive, spontaneous). Analysis routines were primarily designed to determine if infants exhibit stereotypic lip and jaw movement patterns across a variety of behaviors. Secondary analyses were developed to characterize lip and jaw kinematics during the first year of life. The experimental findings are related to previous descriptions of developmental patterns in speech and other skilled motor behaviors (e.g., walking, grasping).