Articulation Artifacts During Overt Language Production in Event-Related Brain Potentials: Description and Correction

Guang Ouyang, Werner Sommer, Changsong ZHOU, Sabrina Aristei, Thomas Pinkpank, Rasha Abdel Rahman*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

22 Citations (Scopus)


Overt articulation produces strong artifacts in the electroencephalogram and in event-related potentials (ERPs), posing a serious problem for investigating language production with these variables. Here we describe the properties of articulation-related artifacts and propose a novel correction procedure. Experiment 1 co-recorded ERPs and trajectories of the articulators with an electromagnetic articulograph from a single participant. The generalization of the findings from the single participant to standard picture naming was investigated in Experiment 2. Both experiments provided evidence that articulation-induced artifacts may start up to 300 ms or more prior to voice onset or voice key onset—depending on the specific measure; they are highly similar in topography across many different phoneme patterns and differ mainly in their time course and amplitude. ERPs were separated from articulation-related artifacts with residue iteration decomposition (RIDE). After obtaining the artifact-free ERPs, their correlations with the articulatory trajectories dropped near to zero. Artifact removal with independent component analysis was less successful; while correlations with the articulatory movements remained substantial, early components prior to voice onset were attenuated in reconstructed ERPs. These findings offer new insights into the nature of articulation artifacts; together with RIDE as method for artifact removal the present report offers a fresh perspective for ERP studies requiring overt articulation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)791-813
Number of pages23
JournalBrain Topography
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2016

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Anatomy
  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology

User-Defined Keywords

  • Artefact correction
  • Electro-magneto articulography
  • Event-related potential
  • Language
  • Method
  • Residue iteration decomposition
  • Speech artifact
  • Speech production


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