Cookies on this website

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Accept all cookies' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. If you click 'Reject all non-essential cookies' only necessary cookies providing core functionality such as security, network management, and accessibility will be enabled. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

Numerous studies have confirmed that prelinguistic utterances are precursors to speech, and there is ample evidence that, for example, frequency of canonical syllables and syllable inventory size correlate with speech and language measures at older ages. Traditionally, prelinguistic utterances have been assessed by phonetic transcription which is difficult and time-consuming in infants. Recently, a more time-efficient methodology to assess prelinguistic utterances in real time, called naturalistic listening, was developed (Ramsdell et al., 2012). In a large international NIDCR-funded randomized controlled trial, Timing of Primary Surgery for with Cleft Palate (TOPS), including many coders, a software program (TimeStamper) was developed to assist in coding of prelinguistic vocalizations in real time, to ensure consistency of the coding procedures. Coders upload a video (or audio) file and watch and listen to the recording in real time without any possibility of pausing or taking notes. In real time, the coder registers each speech-like syllable as canonical or non-canonical. TimeStamper automatically calculates the percentage of canonical syllables of all syllables registered (canonical babbling ratio). At the end of a recording, TimeStamper assists in assessing presence/absence of canonical babbling and syllable inventory size. The software is presented and instructions for free access are provided.

Original publication




Journal article


Clinical linguistics & phonetics

Publication Date





972 - 978


a Department of Nordic Studies and Linguistics , University of Copenhagen , Denmark.


Humans, Cleft Palate, Speech, Child Development, Child Language, Phonetics, Software, Child, Preschool, Infant