Claudia Lüttke successfully defended her thesis “What you see is what you hear: Visual influences on auditory speech perception”.

In a conversation we do not only effortlessly translate soundwaves into words and sentences, but we also use the oral movements of the opposite communication partner to understand what is being said. These mouth movements can even have a direct effect on what we hear someone say, as is famously illustrated by the McGurk illusion (spoken /ba/ sound and mouth movements of the syllable /ga/ is perceived as ‘da’). This thesis investigates these visual influences of seeing the speaker’s mouth on auditory speech perception using functional magnetic resonance imaging and behavioural experiments. Among others, it demonstrated that auditory perception can be flexible. Auditory speech perception can be affected by integrating mismatching audio-visual input. Importantly, this after-effect persists in the absence of visual stimulation.

Congratulations dr. Lüttke!