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Sample records for acoustically modified speech

  1. Language Comprehension in Language-Learning Impaired Children Improved with Acoustically Modified Speech

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tallal, Paula; Miller, Steve L.; Bedi, Gail; Byma, Gary; Wang, Xiaoqin; Nagarajan, Srikantan S.; Schreiner, Christoph; Jenkins, William M.; Merzenich, Michael M.

    1996-01-01

    A speech processing algorithm was developed to create more salient versions of the rapidly changing elements in the acoustic waveform of speech that have been shown to be deficiently processed by language-learning impaired (LLI) children. LLI children received extensive daily training, over a 4-week period, with listening exercises in which all speech was translated into this synthetic form. They also received daily training with computer "games" designed to adaptively drive improvements in temporal processing thresholds. Significant improvements in speech discrimination and language comprehension abilities were demonstrated in two independent groups of LLI children.

  2. System and method for characterizing voiced excitations of speech and acoustic signals, removing acoustic noise from speech, and synthesizing speech

    DOEpatents

    Burnett, Greg C.; Holzrichter, John F.; Ng, Lawrence C.

    2006-08-08

    The present invention is a system and method for characterizing human (or animate) speech voiced excitation functions and acoustic signals, for removing unwanted acoustic noise which often occurs when a speaker uses a microphone in common environments, and for synthesizing personalized or modified human (or other animate) speech upon command from a controller. A low power EM sensor is used to detect the motions of windpipe tissues in the glottal region of the human speech system before, during, and after voiced speech is produced by a user. From these tissue motion measurements, a voiced excitation function can be derived. Further, the excitation function provides speech production information to enhance noise removal from human speech and it enables accurate transfer functions of speech to be obtained. Previously stored excitation and transfer functions can be used for synthesizing personalized or modified human speech. Configurations of EM sensor and acoustic microphone systems are described to enhance noise cancellation and to enable multiple articulator measurements.

  3. System and method for characterizing voiced excitations of speech and acoustic signals, removing acoustic noise from speech, and synthesizing speech

    DOEpatents

    Burnett, Greg C.; Holzrichter, John F.; Ng, Lawrence C.

    2004-03-23

    The present invention is a system and method for characterizing human (or animate) speech voiced excitation functions and acoustic signals, for removing unwanted acoustic noise which often occurs when a speaker uses a microphone in common environments, and for synthesizing personalized or modified human (or other animate) speech upon command from a controller. A low power EM sensor is used to detect the motions of windpipe tissues in the glottal region of the human speech system before, during, and after voiced speech is produced by a user. From these tissue motion measurements, a voiced excitation function can be derived. Further, the excitation function provides speech production information to enhance noise removal from human speech and it enables accurate transfer functions of speech to be obtained. Previously stored excitation and transfer functions can be used for synthesizing personalized or modified human speech. Configurations of EM sensor and acoustic microphone systems are described to enhance noise cancellation and to enable multiple articulator measurements.

  4. System and method for characterizing voiced excitations of speech and acoustic signals, removing acoustic noise from speech, and synthesizing speech

    DOEpatents

    Burnett, Greg C.; Holzrichter, John F.; Ng, Lawrence C.

    2006-02-14

    The present invention is a system and method for characterizing human (or animate) speech voiced excitation functions and acoustic signals, for removing unwanted acoustic noise which often occurs when a speaker uses a microphone in common environments, and for synthesizing personalized or modified human (or other animate) speech upon command from a controller. A low power EM sensor is used to detect the motions of windpipe tissues in the glottal region of the human speech system before, during, and after voiced speech is produced by a user. From these tissue motion measurements, a voiced excitation function can be derived. Further, the excitation function provides speech production information to enhance noise removal from human speech and it enables accurate transfer functions of speech to be obtained. Previously stored excitation and transfer functions can be used for synthesizing personalized or modified human speech. Configurations of EM sensor and acoustic microphone systems are described to enhance noise cancellation and to enable multiple articulator measurements.

  5. System And Method For Characterizing Voiced Excitations Of Speech And Acoustic Signals, Removing Acoustic Noise From Speech, And Synthesizi

    DOEpatents

    Burnett, Greg C.; Holzrichter, John F.; Ng, Lawrence C.

    2006-04-25

    The present invention is a system and method for characterizing human (or animate) speech voiced excitation functions and acoustic signals, for removing unwanted acoustic noise which often occurs when a speaker uses a microphone in common environments, and for synthesizing personalized or modified human (or other animate) speech upon command from a controller. A low power EM sensor is used to detect the motions of windpipe tissues in the glottal region of the human speech system before, during, and after voiced speech is produced by a user. From these tissue motion measurements, a voiced excitation function can be derived. Further, the excitation function provides speech production information to enhance noise removal from human speech and it enables accurate transfer functions of speech to be obtained. Previously stored excitation and transfer functions can be used for synthesizing personalized or modified human speech. Configurations of EM sensor and acoustic microphone systems are described to enhance noise cancellation and to enable multiple articulator measurements.

  6. Acoustics of Clear Speech: Effect of Instruction

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lam, Jennifer; Tjaden, Kris; Wilding, Greg

    2012-01-01

    Purpose: This study investigated how different instructions for eliciting clear speech affected selected acoustic measures of speech. Method: Twelve speakers were audio-recorded reading 18 different sentences from the Assessment of Intelligibility of Dysarthric Speech (Yorkston & Beukelman, 1984). Sentences were produced in habitual, clear,…

  7. Analog Acoustic Expression in Speech Communication

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shintel, Hadas; Nusbaum, Howard C.; Okrent, Arika

    2006-01-01

    We present the first experimental evidence of a phenomenon in speech communication we call "analog acoustic expression." Speech is generally thought of as conveying information in two distinct ways: discrete linguistic-symbolic units such as words and sentences represent linguistic meaning, and continuous prosodic forms convey information about…

  8. Speech coding, reconstruction and recognition using acoustics and electromagnetic waves

    DOEpatents

    Holzrichter, J.F.; Ng, L.C.

    1998-03-17

    The use of EM radiation in conjunction with simultaneously recorded acoustic speech information enables a complete mathematical coding of acoustic speech. The methods include the forming of a feature vector for each pitch period of voiced speech and the forming of feature vectors for each time frame of unvoiced, as well as for combined voiced and unvoiced speech. The methods include how to deconvolve the speech excitation function from the acoustic speech output to describe the transfer function each time frame. The formation of feature vectors defining all acoustic speech units over well defined time frames can be used for purposes of speech coding, speech compression, speaker identification, language-of-speech identification, speech recognition, speech synthesis, speech translation, speech telephony, and speech teaching. 35 figs.

  9. Speech coding, reconstruction and recognition using acoustics and electromagnetic waves

    DOEpatents

    Holzrichter, John F.; Ng, Lawrence C.

    1998-01-01

    The use of EM radiation in conjunction with simultaneously recorded acoustic speech information enables a complete mathematical coding of acoustic speech. The methods include the forming of a feature vector for each pitch period of voiced speech and the forming of feature vectors for each time frame of unvoiced, as well as for combined voiced and unvoiced speech. The methods include how to deconvolve the speech excitation function from the acoustic speech output to describe the transfer function each time frame. The formation of feature vectors defining all acoustic speech units over well defined time frames can be used for purposes of speech coding, speech compression, speaker identification, language-of-speech identification, speech recognition, speech synthesis, speech translation, speech telephony, and speech teaching.

  10. Optimizing acoustical conditions for speech intelligibility in classrooms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Wonyoung

    High speech intelligibility is imperative in classrooms where verbal communication is critical. However, the optimal acoustical conditions to achieve a high degree of speech intelligibility have previously been investigated with inconsistent results, and practical room-acoustical solutions to optimize the acoustical conditions for speech intelligibility have not been developed. This experimental study validated auralization for speech-intelligibility testing, investigated the optimal reverberation for speech intelligibility for both normal and hearing-impaired listeners using more realistic room-acoustical models, and proposed an optimal sound-control design for speech intelligibility based on the findings. The auralization technique was used to perform subjective speech-intelligibility tests. The validation study, comparing auralization results with those of real classroom speech-intelligibility tests, found that if the room to be auralized is not very absorptive or noisy, speech-intelligibility tests using auralization are valid. The speech-intelligibility tests were done in two different auralized sound fields---approximately diffuse and non-diffuse---using the Modified Rhyme Test and both normal and hearing-impaired listeners. A hybrid room-acoustical prediction program was used throughout the work, and it and a 1/8 scale-model classroom were used to evaluate the effects of ceiling barriers and reflectors. For both subject groups, in approximately diffuse sound fields, when the speech source was closer to the listener than the noise source, the optimal reverberation time was zero. When the noise source was closer to the listener than the speech source, the optimal reverberation time was 0.4 s (with another peak at 0.0 s) with relative output power levels of the speech and noise sources SNS = 5 dB, and 0.8 s with SNS = 0 dB. In non-diffuse sound fields, when the noise source was between the speaker and the listener, the optimal reverberation time was 0.6 s with

  11. Acoustic characteristics of listener-constrained speech

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ashby, Simone; Cummins, Fred

    2003-04-01

    Relatively little is known about the acoustical modifications speakers employ to meet the various constraints-auditory, linguistic and otherwise-of their listeners. Similarly, the manner by which perceived listener constraints interact with speakers' adoption of specialized speech registers is poorly Hypo (H&H) theory offers a framework for examining the relationship between speech production and output-oriented goals for communication, suggesting that under certain circumstances speakers may attempt to minimize phonetic ambiguity by employing a ``hyperarticulated'' speaking style (Lindblom, 1990). It remains unclear, however, what the acoustic correlates of hyperarticulated speech are, and how, if at all, we might expect phonetic properties to change respective to different listener-constrained conditions. This paper is part of a preliminary investigation concerned with comparing the prosodic characteristics of speech produced across a range of listener constraints. Analyses are drawn from a corpus of read hyperarticulated speech data comprising eight adult, female speakers of English. Specialized registers include speech to foreigners, infant-directed speech, speech produced under noisy conditions, and human-machine interaction. The authors gratefully acknowledge financial support of the Irish Higher Education Authority, allocated to Fred Cummins for collaborative work with Media Lab Europe.

  12. Investigation of the optimum acoustical conditions for speech using auralization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Wonyoung; Hodgson, Murray

    2001-05-01

    Speech intelligibility is mainly affected by reverberation and by signal-to-noise level difference, the difference between the speech-signal and background-noise levels at a receiver. An important question for the design of rooms for speech (e.g., classrooms) is, what are the optimal values of these factors? This question has been studied experimentally and theoretically. Experimental studies found zero optimal reverberation time, but theoretical predictions found nonzero reverberation times. These contradictory results are partly caused by the different ways of accounting for background noise. Background noise sources and their locations inside the room are the most detrimental factors in speech intelligibility. However, noise levels also interact with reverberation in rooms. In this project, two major room-acoustical factors for speech intelligibility were controlled using speech and noise sources of known relative output levels located in a virtual room with known reverberation. Speech intelligibility test signals were played in the virtual room and auralized for listeners. The Modified Rhyme Test (MRT) and babble noise were used to measure subjective speech intelligibility quality. Optimal reverberation times, and the optimal values of other speech intelligibility metrics, for normal-hearing people and for hard-of-hearing people, were identified and compared.

  13. Speech Intelligibility Advantages using an Acoustic Beamformer Display

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Begault, Durand R.; Sunder, Kaushik; Godfroy, Martine; Otto, Peter

    2015-01-01

    A speech intelligibility test conforming to the Modified Rhyme Test of ANSI S3.2 "Method for Measuring the Intelligibility of Speech Over Communication Systems" was conducted using a prototype 12-channel acoustic beamformer system. The target speech material (signal) was identified against speech babble (noise), with calculated signal-noise ratios of 0, 5 and 10 dB. The signal was delivered at a fixed beam orientation of 135 deg (re 90 deg as the frontal direction of the array) and the noise at 135 deg (co-located) and 0 deg (separated). A significant improvement in intelligibility from 57% to 73% was found for spatial separation for the same signal-noise ratio (0 dB). Significant effects for improved intelligibility due to spatial separation were also found for higher signal-noise ratios (5 and 10 dB).

  14. Speech recognition: Acoustic, phonetic and lexical

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zue, V. W.

    1985-10-01

    Our long-term research goal is the development and implementation of speaker-independent continuous speech recognition systems. It is our conviction that proper utilization of speech-specific knowledge is essential for advanced speech recognition systems. With this in mind, we have continued to make progress on the acquisition of acoustic-phonetic and lexical knowledge. We have completed the development of a continuous digit recognition system. The system was constructed to investigate the utilization of acoustic phonetic knowledge in a speech recognition system. Some of the significant development of this study includes a soft-failure procedure for lexical access, and the discovery of a set of acoustic-phonetic features for verification. We have completed a study of the constraints provided by lexical stress on word recognition. We found that lexical stress information alone can, on the average, reduce the number of word candidates from a large dictionary by more than 80%. In conjunction with this study, we successfully developed a system that automatically determines the stress pattern of a word from the acoustic signal.

  15. Acoustic Evidence for Phonologically Mismatched Speech Errors

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gormley, Andrea

    2015-01-01

    Speech errors are generally said to accommodate to their new phonological context. This accommodation has been validated by several transcription studies. The transcription methodology is not the best choice for detecting errors at this level, however, as this type of error can be difficult to perceive. This paper presents an acoustic analysis of…

  16. Speech recognition: Acoustic, phonetic and lexical knowledge

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zue, V. W.

    1985-08-01

    During this reporting period we continued to make progress on the acquisition of acoustic-phonetic and lexical knowledge. We completed development of a continuous digit recognition system. The system was constructed to investigate the use of acoustic-phonetic knowledge in a speech recognition system. The significant achievements of this study include the development of a soft-failure procedure for lexical access and the discovery of a set of acoustic-phonetic features for verification. We completed a study of the constraints that lexical stress imposes on word recognition. We found that lexical stress information alone can, on the average, reduce the number of word candidates from a large dictionary by more than 80 percent. In conjunction with this study, we successfully developed a system that automatically determines the stress pattern of a word from the acoustic signal. We performed an acoustic study on the characteristics of nasal consonants and nasalized vowels. We have also developed recognition algorithms for nasal murmurs and nasalized vowels in continuous speech. We finished the preliminary development of a system that aligns a speech waveform with the corresponding phonetic transcription.

  17. Perceptual centres in speech - an acoustic analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scott, Sophie Kerttu

    Perceptual centres, or P-centres, represent the perceptual moments of occurrence of acoustic signals - the 'beat' of a sound. P-centres underlie the perception and production of rhythm in perceptually regular speech sequences. P-centres have been modelled both in speech and non speech (music) domains. The three aims of this thesis were toatest out current P-centre models to determine which best accounted for the experimental data bto identify a candidate parameter to map P-centres onto (a local approach) as opposed to the previous global models which rely upon the whole signal to determine the P-centre the final aim was to develop a model of P-centre location which could be applied to speech and non speech signals. The first aim was investigated by a series of experiments in which a) speech from different speakers was investigated to determine whether different models could account for variation between speakers b) whether rendering the amplitude time plot of a speech signal affects the P-centre of the signal c) whether increasing the amplitude at the offset of a speech signal alters P-centres in the production and perception of speech. The second aim was carried out by a) manipulating the rise time of different speech signals to determine whether the P-centre was affected, and whether the type of speech sound ramped affected the P-centre shift b) manipulating the rise time and decay time of a synthetic vowel to determine whether the onset alteration was had more affect on P-centre than the offset manipulation c) and whether the duration of a vowel affected the P-centre, if other attributes (amplitude, spectral contents) were held constant. The third aim - modelling P-centres - was based on these results. The Frequency dependent Amplitude Increase Model of P-centre location (FAIM) was developed using a modelling protocol, the APU GammaTone Filterbank and the speech from different speakers. The P-centres of the stimuli corpus were highly predicted by attributes of

  18. Acoustic evidence for phonologically mismatched speech errors.

    PubMed

    Gormley, Andrea

    2015-04-01

    Speech errors are generally said to accommodate to their new phonological context. This accommodation has been validated by several transcription studies. The transcription methodology is not the best choice for detecting errors at this level, however, as this type of error can be difficult to perceive. This paper presents an acoustic analysis of speech errors that uncovers non-accommodated or mismatch errors. A mismatch error is a sub-phonemic error that results in an incorrect surface phonology. This type of error could arise during the processing of phonological rules or they could be made at the motor level of implementation. The results of this work have important implications for both experimental and theoretical research. For experimentalists, it validates the tools used for error induction and the acoustic determination of errors free of the perceptual bias. For theorists, this methodology can be used to test the nature of the processes proposed in language production.

  19. Acoustic analysis of speech under stress.

    PubMed

    Sondhi, Savita; Khan, Munna; Vijay, Ritu; Salhan, Ashok K; Chouhan, Satish

    2015-01-01

    When a person is emotionally charged, stress could be discerned in his voice. This paper presents a simplified and a non-invasive approach to detect psycho-physiological stress by monitoring the acoustic modifications during a stressful conversation. Voice database consists of audio clips from eight different popular FM broadcasts wherein the host of the show vexes the subjects who are otherwise unaware of the charade. The audio clips are obtained from real-life stressful conversations (no simulated emotions). Analysis is done using PRAAT software to evaluate mean fundamental frequency (F0) and formant frequencies (F1, F2, F3, F4) both in neutral and stressed state. Results suggest that F0 increases with stress; however, formant frequency decreases with stress. Comparison of Fourier and chirp spectra of short vowel segment shows that for relaxed speech, the two spectra are similar; however, for stressed speech, they differ in the high frequency range due to increased pitch modulation. PMID:26558301

  20. Acoustic characteristics of Korean stops in Korean child-directed speech

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Minjung; Stoel-Gammon, Carol

    2005-04-01

    A variety of cross-linguistic studies have documented that the acoustic properties of speech addressed to young children include exaggeration of pitch contours and acoustically salient features of phonetic units. It has been suggested that phonetic modifications of child-directed speech facilitate young children's speech perception by providing detailed phonetic information about the target word. While there are several studies reporting vowel modifications in speech to infants (i.e., hyper-articulated vowels), there has been relatively little research about consonant modifications in speech to young children (except for VOT). The present study examines acoustic properties of Korean stops in Korean mothers' speech to their children aged 29 to 38 months (N=6). Korean tense, lax, and aspirated stops are all voiceless in word-initial position, and are perceptually differentiated by several acoustic parameters including VOT, f0 of the following vowel, and the amplitude difference of the first and second harmonics at the voice onset of the following vowel. This study compares values of these parameters in Korean motherese to those in speech to adult Koreans from same speakers. Results focus on the acoustic properties of Korean stops in child-directed speech and how they are modified to help Korean young children learn the three-way phonetic contrast.

  1. Acoustic Study of Acted Emotions in Speech

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Rong

    An extensive set of carefully recorded utterances provided a speech database for investigating acoustic correlates among eight emotional states. Four professional actors and four professional actresses simulated the emotional states of joy, conversation, nervousness, anger, sadness, hate, fear, and depression. The values of 14 acoustic parameters were extracted from analyses of the simulated portrayals. Normalization of the parameters was made to reduce the talker-dependence. Correlates of emotion were investigated by means of principal components analysis. Sadness and depression were found to be "ambiguous" with respect to each other, but "unique" with respect to joy and anger in the principal components space. Joy, conversation, nervousness, anger, hate, and fear did not separate well in the space and so exhibited ambiguity with respect to one another. The different talkers expressed joy, anger, sadness, and depression more consistently than the other four emotions. The analysis results were compared with the results of a subjective study using the same speech database and considerable consistency between the two was found.

  2. Acoustic differences among casual, conversational, and read speech

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pinnow, DeAnna

    Speech is a complex behavior that allows speakers to use many variations to satisfy the demands connected with multiple speaking environments. Speech research typically obtains speech samples in a controlled laboratory setting using read material, yet anecdotal observations of such speech, particularly from talkers with a speech and language impairment, have identified a "performance" effect in the produced speech which masks the characteristics of impaired speech outside of the lab (Goberman, Recker, & Parveen, 2010). The aim of the current study was to investigate acoustic differences among laboratory read, laboratory conversational, and casual speech through well-defined speech tasks in the laboratory and in talkers' natural environments. Eleven healthy research participants performed lab recording tasks (19 read sentences and a dialogue about their life) and collected natural-environment recordings of themselves over 3-day periods using portable recorders. Segments were analyzed for articulatory, voice, and prosodic acoustic characteristics using computer software and hand counting. The current study results indicate that lab-read speech was significantly different from casual speech: greater articulation range, improved voice quality measures, lower speech rate, and lower mean pitch. One implication of the results is that different laboratory techniques may be beneficial in obtaining speech samples that are more like casual speech, thus making it easier to correctly analyze abnormal speech characteristics with fewer errors.

  3. Acoustics in Halls for Speech and Music

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gade, Anders C.

    This chapter deals specifically with concepts, tools, and architectural variables of importance when designing auditoria for speech and music. The focus will be on cultivating the useful components of the sound in the room rather than on avoiding noise from outside or from installations, which is dealt with in Chap. 11. The chapter starts by presenting the subjective aspects of the room acoustic experience according to consensus at the time of writing. Then follows a description of their objective counterparts, the objective room acoustic parameters, among which the classical reverberation time measure is only one of many, but still of fundamental value. After explanations on how these parameters can be measured and predicted during the design phase, the remainder of the chapter deals with how the acoustic properties can be controlled by the architectural design of auditoria. This is done by presenting the influence of individual design elements as well as brief descriptions of halls designed for specific purposes, such as drama, opera, and symphonic concerts. Finally, some important aspects of loudspeaker installations in auditoria are briefly touched upon.

  4. The acoustic properties of bilingual infant-directed speech.

    PubMed

    Danielson, D Kyle; Seidl, Amanda; Onishi, Kristine H; Alamian, Golnoush; Cristia, Alejandrina

    2014-02-01

    Does the acoustic input for bilingual infants equal the conjunction of the input heard by monolinguals of each separate language? The present letter tackles this question, focusing on maternal speech addressed to 11-month-old infants, on the cusp of perceptual attunement. The acoustic characteristics of the point vowels /a,i,u/ were measured in the spontaneous infant-directed speech of French-English bilingual mothers, as well as in the speech of French and English monolingual mothers. Bilingual caregivers produced their two languages with acoustic prosodic separation equal to that of the monolinguals, while also conveying distinct spectral characteristics of the point vowels in their two languages.

  5. School cafeteria noise-The impact of room acoustics and speech intelligibility on children's voice levels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bridger, Joseph F.

    2002-05-01

    The impact of room acoustics and speech intelligibility conditions of different school cafeterias on the voice levels of children is examined. Methods of evaluating cafeteria designs and predicting noise levels are discussed. Children are shown to modify their voice levels with changes in speech intelligibility like adults. Reverberation and signal to noise ratio are the important acoustical factors affecting speech intelligibility. Children have much more difficulty than adults in conditions where noise and reverberation are present. To evaluate the relationship of voice level and speech intelligibility, a database of real sound levels and room acoustics data was generated from measurements and data recorded during visits to a variety of existing cafeterias under different occupancy conditions. The effects of speech intelligibility and room acoustics on childrens voice levels are demonstrated. A new method is presented for predicting speech intelligibility conditions and resulting noise levels for the design of new cafeterias and renovation of existing facilities. Measurements are provided for an existing school cafeteria before and after new room acoustics treatments were added. This will be helpful for acousticians, architects, school systems, regulatory agencies, and Parent Teacher Associations to create less noisy cafeteria environments.

  6. Clear Speech Variants: An Acoustic Study in Parkinson's Disease

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lam, Jennifer; Tjaden, Kris

    2016-01-01

    Purpose: The authors investigated how different variants of clear speech affect segmental and suprasegmental acoustic measures of speech in speakers with Parkinson's disease and a healthy control group. Method: A total of 14 participants with Parkinson's disease and 14 control participants served as speakers. Each speaker produced 18 different…

  7. Acoustic Markers of Prosodic Boundaries in Spanish Spontaneous Alaryngeal Speech

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cuenca, M. H.; Barrio, M. M.

    2010-01-01

    Prosodic information aids segmentation of the continuous speech signal and thereby facilitates auditory speech processing. Durational and pitch variations are prosodic cues especially necessary to convey prosodic boundaries, but alaryngeal speakers have inconsistent control over acoustic parameters such as F0 and duration, being as a result noisy…

  8. Modifying Speech to Children based on their Perceived Phonetic Accuracy

    PubMed Central

    Julien, Hannah M.; Munson, Benjamin

    2014-01-01

    Purpose We examined the relationship between adults' perception of the accuracy of children's speech, and acoustic detail in their subsequent productions to children. Methods Twenty-two adults participated in a task in which they rated the accuracy of 2- and 3-year-old children's word-initial /s/and /∫/ using a visual analog scale (VAS), then produced a token of the same word as if they were responding to the child whose speech they had just rated. Result The duration of adults' fricatives varied as a function of their perception of the accuracy of children's speech: longer fricatives were produced following productions that they rated as inaccurate. This tendency to modify duration in response to perceived inaccurate tokens was mediated by measures of self-reported experience interacting with children. However, speakers did not increase the spectral distinctiveness of their fricatives following the perception of inaccurate tokens. Conclusion These results suggest that adults modify temporal features of their speech in response to perceiving children's inaccurate productions. These longer fricatives are potentially both enhanced input to children, and an error-corrective signal. PMID:22744140

  9. Study of acoustic correlates associate with emotional speech

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yildirim, Serdar; Lee, Sungbok; Lee, Chul Min; Bulut, Murtaza; Busso, Carlos; Kazemzadeh, Ebrahim; Narayanan, Shrikanth

    2004-10-01

    This study investigates the acoustic characteristics of four different emotions expressed in speech. The aim is to obtain detailed acoustic knowledge on how a speech signal is modulated by changes from neutral to a certain emotional state. Such knowledge is necessary for automatic emotion recognition and classification and emotional speech synthesis. Speech data obtained from two semi-professional actresses are analyzed and compared. Each subject produces 211 sentences with four different emotions; neutral, sad, angry, happy. We analyze changes in temporal and acoustic parameters such as magnitude and variability of segmental duration, fundamental frequency and the first three formant frequencies as a function of emotion. Acoustic differences among the emotions are also explored with mutual information computation, multidimensional scaling and acoustic likelihood comparison with normal speech. Results indicate that speech associated with anger and happiness is characterized by longer duration, shorter interword silence, higher pitch and rms energy with wider ranges. Sadness is distinguished from other emotions by lower rms energy and longer interword silence. Interestingly, the difference in formant pattern between [happiness/anger] and [neutral/sadness] are better reflected in back vowels such as /a/(/father/) than in front vowels. Detailed results on intra- and interspeaker variability will be reported.

  10. Acoustic assessment of speech privacy curtains in two nursing units

    PubMed Central

    Pope, Diana S.; Miller-Klein, Erik T.

    2016-01-01

    Hospitals have complex soundscapes that create challenges to patient care. Extraneous noise and high reverberation rates impair speech intelligibility, which leads to raised voices. In an unintended spiral, the increasing noise may result in diminished speech privacy, as people speak loudly to be heard over the din. The products available to improve hospital soundscapes include construction materials that absorb sound (acoustic ceiling tiles, carpet, wall insulation) and reduce reverberation rates. Enhanced privacy curtains are now available and offer potential for a relatively simple way to improve speech privacy and speech intelligibility by absorbing sound at the hospital patient's bedside. Acoustic assessments were performed over 2 days on two nursing units with a similar design in the same hospital. One unit was built with the 1970s’ standard hospital construction and the other was newly refurbished (2013) with sound-absorbing features. In addition, we determined the effect of an enhanced privacy curtain versus standard privacy curtains using acoustic measures of speech privacy and speech intelligibility indexes. Privacy curtains provided auditory protection for the patients. In general, that protection was increased by the use of enhanced privacy curtains. On an average, the enhanced curtain improved sound absorption from 20% to 30%; however, there was considerable variability, depending on the configuration of the rooms tested. Enhanced privacy curtains provide measureable improvement to the acoustics of patient rooms but cannot overcome larger acoustic design issues. To shorten reverberation time, additional absorption, and compact and more fragmented nursing unit floor plate shapes should be considered. PMID:26780959

  11. Acoustic assessment of speech privacy curtains in two nursing units.

    PubMed

    Pope, Diana S; Miller-Klein, Erik T

    2016-01-01

    Hospitals have complex soundscapes that create challenges to patient care. Extraneous noise and high reverberation rates impair speech intelligibility, which leads to raised voices. In an unintended spiral, the increasing noise may result in diminished speech privacy, as people speak loudly to be heard over the din. The products available to improve hospital soundscapes include construction materials that absorb sound (acoustic ceiling tiles, carpet, wall insulation) and reduce reverberation rates. Enhanced privacy curtains are now available and offer potential for a relatively simple way to improve speech privacy and speech intelligibility by absorbing sound at the hospital patient's bedside. Acoustic assessments were performed over 2 days on two nursing units with a similar design in the same hospital. One unit was built with the 1970s' standard hospital construction and the other was newly refurbished (2013) with sound-absorbing features. In addition, we determined the effect of an enhanced privacy curtain versus standard privacy curtains using acoustic measures of speech privacy and speech intelligibility indexes. Privacy curtains provided auditory protection for the patients. In general, that protection was increased by the use of enhanced privacy curtains. On an average, the enhanced curtain improved sound absorption from 20% to 30%; however, there was considerable variability, depending on the configuration of the rooms tested. Enhanced privacy curtains provide measureable improvement to the acoustics of patient rooms but cannot overcome larger acoustic design issues. To shorten reverberation time, additional absorption, and compact and more fragmented nursing unit floor plate shapes should be considered. PMID:26780959

  12. Acoustic assessment of speech privacy curtains in two nursing units.

    PubMed

    Pope, Diana S; Miller-Klein, Erik T

    2016-01-01

    Hospitals have complex soundscapes that create challenges to patient care. Extraneous noise and high reverberation rates impair speech intelligibility, which leads to raised voices. In an unintended spiral, the increasing noise may result in diminished speech privacy, as people speak loudly to be heard over the din. The products available to improve hospital soundscapes include construction materials that absorb sound (acoustic ceiling tiles, carpet, wall insulation) and reduce reverberation rates. Enhanced privacy curtains are now available and offer potential for a relatively simple way to improve speech privacy and speech intelligibility by absorbing sound at the hospital patient's bedside. Acoustic assessments were performed over 2 days on two nursing units with a similar design in the same hospital. One unit was built with the 1970s' standard hospital construction and the other was newly refurbished (2013) with sound-absorbing features. In addition, we determined the effect of an enhanced privacy curtain versus standard privacy curtains using acoustic measures of speech privacy and speech intelligibility indexes. Privacy curtains provided auditory protection for the patients. In general, that protection was increased by the use of enhanced privacy curtains. On an average, the enhanced curtain improved sound absorption from 20% to 30%; however, there was considerable variability, depending on the configuration of the rooms tested. Enhanced privacy curtains provide measureable improvement to the acoustics of patient rooms but cannot overcome larger acoustic design issues. To shorten reverberation time, additional absorption, and compact and more fragmented nursing unit floor plate shapes should be considered.

  13. Evaluating a topographical mapping from speech acoustics to tongue positions

    SciTech Connect

    Hogden, J.; Heard, M.

    1995-05-01

    The {ital continuity} {ital mapping} algorithm---a procedure for learning to recover the relative positions of the articulators from speech signals---is evaluated using human speech data. The advantage of continuity mapping is that it is an unsupervised algorithm; that is, it can potentially be trained to make a mapping from speech acoustics to speech articulation without articulator measurements. The procedure starts by vector quantizing short windows of a speech signal so that each window is represented (encoded) by a single number. Next, multidimensional scaling is used to map quantization codes that were temporally close in the encoded speech to nearby points in a {ital continuity} {ital map}. Since speech sounds produced sufficiently close together in time must have been produced by similar articulator configurations, and speech sounds produced close together in time are close to each other in the continuity map, sounds produced by similar articulator positions should be mapped to similar positions in the continuity map. The data set used for evaluating the continuity mapping algorithm is comprised of simultaneously collected articulator and acoustic measurements made using an electromagnetic midsagittal articulometer on a human subject. Comparisons between measured articulator positions and those recovered using continuity mapping will be presented.

  14. Effects of deafness on acoustic characteristics of American English tense/lax vowels in maternal speech to infants

    PubMed Central

    Kondaurova, Maria V.; Bergeson, Tonya R.; Dilley, Laura C.

    2012-01-01

    Recent studies have demonstrated that mothers exaggerate phonetic properties of infant-directed (ID) speech. However, these studies focused on a single acoustic dimension (frequency), whereas speech sounds are composed of multiple acoustic cues. Moreover, little is known about how mothers adjust phonetic properties of speech to children with hearing loss. This study examined mothers’ production of frequency and duration cues to the American English tense/lax vowel contrast in speech to profoundly deaf (N = 14) and normal-hearing (N = 14) infants, and to an adult experimenter. First and second formant frequencies and vowel duration of tense (/i/, /u/) and lax (/I/, /ʊ/) vowels were measured. Results demonstrated that for both infant groups mothers hyperarticulated the acoustic vowel space and increased vowel duration in ID speech relative to adult-directed speech. Mean F2 values were decreased for the /u/ vowel and increased for the /I/ vowel, and vowel duration was longer for the /i/, /u/, and /I/ vowels in ID speech. However, neither acoustic cue differed in speech to hearing-impaired or normal-hearing infants. These results suggest that both formant frequencies and vowel duration that differentiate American English tense/lx vowel contrasts are modified in ID speech regardless of the hearing status of the addressee. PMID:22894224

  15. Methods and apparatus for non-acoustic speech characterization and recognition

    SciTech Connect

    Holzrichter, J.F.

    1999-12-21

    By simultaneously recording EM wave reflections and acoustic speech information, the positions and velocities of the speech organs as speech is articulated can be defined for each acoustic speech unit. Well defined time frames and feature vectors describing the speech, to the degree required, can be formed. Such feature vectors can uniquely characterize the speech unit being articulated each time frame. The onset of speech, rejection of external noise, vocalized pitch periods, articulator conditions, accurate timing, the identification of the speaker, acoustic speech unit recognition, and organ mechanical parameters can be determined.

  16. Methods and apparatus for non-acoustic speech characterization and recognition

    DOEpatents

    Holzrichter, John F.

    1999-01-01

    By simultaneously recording EM wave reflections and acoustic speech information, the positions and velocities of the speech organs as speech is articulated can be defined for each acoustic speech unit. Well defined time frames and feature vectors describing the speech, to the degree required, can be formed. Such feature vectors can uniquely characterize the speech unit being articulated each time frame. The onset of speech, rejection of external noise, vocalized pitch periods, articulator conditions, accurate timing, the identification of the speaker, acoustic speech unit recognition, and organ mechanical parameters can be determined.

  17. Acoustic Speech Analysis Of Wayang Golek Puppeteer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hakim, Faisal Abdul; Mandasari, Miranti Indar; Sarwono, Joko

    2010-12-01

    Active disguising speech is one problem to be taken into account in forensic speaker verification or identification processes. The verification processes are usually carried out by comparison between unknown samples and known samples. Active disguising can be occurred on both samples. To simulate the condition of speech disguising, voices of Wayang Golek Puppeteer were used. It is assumed that wayang golek puppeteer is a master of disguise. He can manipulate his voice into many different types of character's voices. This paper discusses the speech characteristics of 2 puppeteers. Comparison was made between the voices of puppeteer's habitual voice with his manipulated voice.

  18. Music, Speech and Hearing: A Course in Descriptive Acoustics.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Strong, William J.; Dudley, J. Duane

    A general undergraduate education course in descriptive acoustics for students in music, speech, and environmental disciplines is described. Student background, course philosophy, and course format are presented. Resource materials, which include books, a study guide, films, audio tapes, demonstrations, walk-in laboratories, and an examination…

  19. Acoustical conditions for speech communication in active elementary school classrooms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sato, Hiroshi; Bradley, John

    2005-04-01

    Detailed acoustical measurements were made in 34 active elementary school classrooms with typical rectangular room shape in schools near Ottawa, Canada. There was an average of 21 students in classrooms. The measurements were made to obtain accurate indications of the acoustical quality of conditions for speech communication during actual teaching activities. Mean speech and noise levels were determined from the distribution of recorded sound levels and the average speech-to-noise ratio was 11 dBA. Measured mid-frequency reverberation times (RT) during the same occupied conditions varied from 0.3 to 0.6 s, and were a little less than for the unoccupied rooms. RT values were not related to noise levels. Octave band speech and noise levels, useful-to-detrimental ratios, and Speech Transmission Index values were also determined. Key results included: (1) The average vocal effort of teachers corresponded to louder than Pearsons Raised voice level; (2) teachers increase their voice level to overcome ambient noise; (3) effective speech levels can be enhanced by up to 5 dB by early reflection energy; and (4) student activity is seen to be the dominant noise source, increasing average noise levels by up to 10 dBA during teaching activities. [Work supported by CLLRnet.

  20. System and method for characterizing voiced excitations of speech and acoustic signals, removing acoustic noise from speech, and synthesizing speech

    DOEpatents

    Burnett, Greg C.; Holzrichter, John F.; Ng, Lawrence C.

    2002-01-01

    Low power EM waves are used to detect motions of vocal tract tissues of the human speech system before, during, and after voiced speech. A voiced excitation function is derived. The excitation function provides speech production information to enhance speech characterization and to enable noise removal from human speech.

  1. Speech recognition: Acoustic-phonetic knowledge acquisition and representation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zue, Victor W.

    1988-09-01

    The long-term research goal is to develop and implement speaker-independent continuous speech recognition systems. It is believed that the proper utilization of speech-specific knowledge is essential for such advanced systems. This research is thus directed toward the acquisition, quantification, and representation, of acoustic-phonetic and lexical knowledge, and the application of this knowledge to speech recognition algorithms. In addition, we are exploring new speech recognition alternatives based on artificial intelligence and connectionist techniques. We developed a statistical model for predicting the acoustic realization of stop consonants in various positions in the syllable template. A unification-based grammatical formalism was developed for incorporating this model into the lexical access algorithm. We provided an information-theoretic justification for the hierarchical structure of the syllable template. We analyzed segmented duration for vowels and fricatives in continuous speech. Based on contextual information, we developed durational models for vowels and fricatives that account for over 70 percent of the variance, using data from multiple, unknown speakers. We rigorously evaluated the ability of human spectrogram readers to identify stop consonants spoken by many talkers and in a variety of phonetic contexts. Incorporating the declarative knowledge used by the readers, we developed a knowledge-based system for stop identification. We achieved comparable system performance to that to the readers.

  2. Acoustic Characteristics of Ataxic Speech in Japanese Patients with Spinocerebellar Degeneration (SCD)

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ikui, Yukiko; Tsukuda, Mamoru; Kuroiwa, Yoshiyuki; Koyano, Shigeru; Hirose, Hajime; Taguchi, Takahide

    2012-01-01

    Background: In English- and German-speaking countries, ataxic speech is often described as showing scanning based on acoustic impressions. Although the term "scanning" is generally considered to represent abnormal speech features including prosodic excess or insufficiency, any precise acoustic analysis of ataxic speech has not been performed in…

  3. Segment-based acoustic models for continuous speech recognition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ostendorf, Mari; Rohlicek, J. R.

    1994-02-01

    In work, we are interested in the problem of large vocabulary, speaker-independent continuous speech recognition, and primarily in the acoustic modeling component of this problem. In developing acoustic models for speech recognition, we have conflicting goals. On one hand, the models should be robust to inter- and intra-speaker variability, to the use of a different vocabulary in recognition than in training, and to the effects of moderately noisy environments. In order to accomplish this, we need to model gross features and global trends. On the other hand, the models must be sensitive and detailed enough to detect fine acoustic differences between similar words in a large vocabulary task. To answer these opposing demands requires improvements in acoustic modeling at several levels: the frame level (e.g. signal processing), the phoneme level (e.g. modeling feature dynamics), and the utterance level (e.g. defining a structural context for representing the intra-utterance dependence across phonemes). This project address the problem of acoustic modeling specifically focusing on modeling at the segment level and above.

  4. Adaptation to Room Acoustics Using the Modified Rhyme Test

    PubMed Central

    Brandewie, Eugene; Zahorik, Pavel

    2012-01-01

    The negative effect of reverberant sound energy on speech intelligibility is well documented. Recently, however, prior exposure to room acoustics has been shown to increase intelligibility for a number of listeners in simulated room environments. This room adaptation effect, a possible extension of dynamic echo suppression, has been shown to be specific to reverberant rooms and requires binaural input. Because this effect has been demonstrated only using the Coordinated Response Measure (CRM) corpus it is important to determine whether the increase in intelligibility scores reported previously was due to the specific nature of the CRM task. Here we demonstrate a comparable room-acoustic effect using the Modified Rhyme Test (MRT) corpus in multiple room environments. The results are consistent with the idea that the room adaptation effect may be a natural phenomenon of listening in reverberant environments. PMID:23437415

  5. Predicting the intelligibility of deaf children's speech from acoustic measures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Uchanski, Rosalie M.; Geers, Ann E.; Brenner, Christine M.; Tobey, Emily A.

    2001-05-01

    A weighted combination of speech-acoustic measures may provide an objective assessment of speech intelligibility in deaf children that could be used to evaluate the benefits of sensory aids and rehabilitation programs. This investigation compared the accuracy of two different approaches, multiple linear regression and a simple neural net. These two methods were applied to identical sets of acoustic measures, including both segmental (e.g., voice-onset times of plosives, spectral moments of fricatives, second formant frequencies of vowels) and suprasegmental measures (e.g., sentence duration, number and frequency of intersentence pauses). These independent variables were obtained from digitized recordings of deaf children's imitations of 11 simple sentences. The dependent measure was the percentage of spoken words from the 36 McGarr Sentences understood by groups of naive listeners. The two predictive methods were trained on speech measures obtained from 123 out of 164 8- and 9-year-old deaf children who used cochlear implants. Then, predictions were obtained using speech measures from the remaining 41 children. Preliminary results indicate that multiple linear regression is a better predictor of intelligibility than the neural net, accounting for 79% as opposed to 65% of the variance in the data. [Work supported by NIH.

  6. Tongue-Palate Contact Pressure, Oral Air Pressure, and Acoustics of Clear Speech

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Searl, Jeff; Evitts, Paul M.

    2013-01-01

    Purpose: The authors compared articulatory contact pressure (ACP), oral air pressure (Po), and speech acoustics for conversational versus clear speech. They also assessed the relationship of these measures to listener perception. Method: Twelve adults with normal speech produced monosyllables in a phrase using conversational and clear speech.…

  7. Adding articulatory features to acoustic features for automatic speech recognition

    SciTech Connect

    Zlokarnik, I.

    1995-05-01

    A hidden-Markov-model (HMM) based speech recognition system was evaluated that makes use of simultaneously recorded acoustic and articulatory data. The articulatory measurements were gathered by means of electromagnetic articulography and describe the movement of small coils fixed to the speakers` tongue and jaw during the production of German V{sub 1}CV{sub 2} sequences [P. Hoole and S. Gfoerer, J. Acoust. Soc. Am. Suppl. 1 {bold 87}, S123 (1990)]. Using the coordinates of the coil positions as an articulatory representation, acoustic and articulatory features were combined to make up an acoustic--articulatory feature vector. The discriminant power of this combined representation was evaluated for two subjects on a speaker-dependent isolated word recognition task. When the articulatory measurements were used both for training and testing the HMMs, the articulatory representation was capable of reducing the error rate of comparable acoustic-based HMMs by a relative percentage of more than 60%. In a separate experiment, the articulatory movements during the testing phase were estimated using a multilayer perceptron that performed an acoustic-to-articulatory mapping. Under these more realistic conditions, when articulatory measurements are only available during the training, the error rate could be reduced by a relative percentage of 18% to 25%.

  8. Denoising of human speech using combined acoustic and em sensor signal processing

    SciTech Connect

    Ng, L C; Burnett, G C; Holzrichter, J F; Gable, T J

    1999-11-29

    Low Power EM radar-like sensors have made it possible to measure properties of the human speech production system in real-time, without acoustic interference. This greatly enhances the quality and quantify of information for many speech related applications. See Holzrichter, Burnett, Ng, and Lea, J. Acoustic. Soc. Am. 103 (1) 622 (1998). By using combined Glottal-EM- Sensor- and Acoustic-signals, segments of voiced, unvoiced, and no-speech can be reliably defined. Real-time Denoising filters can be constructed to remove noise from the user's corresponding speech signal.

  9. An acoustic comparison of two women's infant- and adult-directed speech

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Andruski, Jean; Katz-Gershon, Shiri

    2003-04-01

    In addition to having prosodic characteristics that are attractive to infant listeners, infant-directed (ID) speech shares certain characteristics of adult-directed (AD) clear speech, such as increased acoustic distance between vowels, that might be expected to make ID speech easier for adults to perceive in noise than AD conversational speech. However, perceptual tests of two women's ID productions by Andruski and Bessega [J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 112, 2355] showed that is not always the case. In a word identification task that compared ID speech with AD clear and conversational speech, one speaker's ID productions were less well-identified than AD clear speech, but better identified than AD conversational speech. For the second woman, ID speech was the least accurately identified of the three speech registers. For both speakers, hard words (infrequent words with many lexical neighbors) were also at an increased disadvantage relative to easy words (frequent words with few lexical neighbors) in speech registers that were less accurately perceived. This study will compare several acoustic properties of these women's productions, including pitch and formant-frequency characteristics. Results of the acoustic analyses will be examined with the original perceptual results to suggest reasons for differences in listener's accuracy in identifying these two women's ID speech in noise.

  10. Acoustic Analysis of the Voiced-Voiceless Distinction in Dutch Tracheoesophageal Speech

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jongmans, Petra; Wempe, Ton G.; van Tinteren, Harm; Hilgers, Frans J. M.; Pols, Louis C. W.; van As-Brooks, Corina J.

    2010-01-01

    Purpose: Confusions between voiced and voiceless plosives and voiced and voiceless fricatives are common in Dutch tracheoesophageal (TE) speech. This study investigates (a) which acoustic measures are found to convey a correct voicing contrast in TE speech and (b) whether different measures are found in TE speech than in normal laryngeal (NL)…

  11. Perceptual and Acoustic Reliability Estimates for the Speech Disorders Classification System (SDCS)

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shriberg, Lawrence D.; Fourakis, Marios; Hall, Sheryl D.; Karlsson, Heather B.; Lohmeier, Heather L.; McSweeny, Jane L.; Potter, Nancy L.; Scheer-Cohen, Alison R.; Strand, Edythe A.; Tilkens, Christie M.; Wilson, David L.

    2010-01-01

    A companion paper describes three extensions to a classification system for paediatric speech sound disorders termed the Speech Disorders Classification System (SDCS). The SDCS uses perceptual and acoustic data reduction methods to obtain information on a speaker's speech, prosody, and voice. The present paper provides reliability estimates for…

  12. Teachers and Teaching: Speech Production Accommodations Due to Changes in the Acoustic Environment

    PubMed Central

    Hunter, Eric J.; Bottalico, Pasquale; Graetzer, Simone; Leishman, Timothy W.; Berardi, Mark L.; Eyring, Nathan G.; Jensen, Zachary R.; Rolins, Michael K.; Whiting, Jennifer K.

    2016-01-01

    School teachers have an elevated risk of voice problems due to the vocal demands in the workplace. This manuscript presents the results of three studies investigating teachers’ voice use at work. In the first study, 57 teachers were observed for 2 weeks (waking hours) to compare how they used their voice in the school environment and in non-school environments. In a second study, 45 participants performed a short vocal task in two different rooms: a variable acoustic room and an anechoic chamber. Subjects were taken back and forth between the two rooms. Each time they entered the variable acoustics room, the reverberation time and/or the background noise condition had been modified. In this latter study, subjects responded to questions about their vocal comfort and their perception of changes in the acoustic environment. In a third study, 20 untrained vocalists performed a simple vocal task in the following conditions: with and without background babble and with and without transparent plexiglass shields to increase the first reflection. Relationships were examined between [1] the results for the room acoustic parameters; [2] the subjects’ perception of the room; and [3] the recorded speech acoustic. Several differences between male and female subjects were found; some of those differences held for each room condition (at school vs. not at school, reverberation level, noise level, and early reflection). PMID:26949426

  13. Speech Compensation for Time-Scale-Modified Auditory Feedback

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ogane, Rintaro; Honda, Masaaki

    2014-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of this study was to examine speech compensation in response to time-scale-modified auditory feedback during the transition of the semivowel for a target utterance of /ija/. Method: Each utterance session consisted of 10 control trials in the normal feedback condition followed by 20 perturbed trials in the modified auditory…

  14. Moving to the Speed of Sound: Context Modulation of the Effect of Acoustic Properties of Speech

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shintel, Hadas; Nusbaum, Howard C.

    2008-01-01

    Suprasegmental acoustic patterns in speech can convey meaningful information and affect listeners' interpretation in various ways, including through systematic analog mapping of message-relevant information onto prosody. We examined whether the effect of analog acoustic variation is governed by the acoustic properties themselves. For example, fast…

  15. Age-related Changes in Acoustic Modifications of Mandarin Maternal Speech to Preverbal Infants and Five-Year-Old Children: A Longitudinal Study

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Huei-Mei; Tsao, Feng-Ming; Kuhl, Patricia K.

    2010-01-01

    Acoustic-phonetic exaggeration of infant-directed speech (IDS) is well documented, but few studies address whether these features are modified with a child's age. Mandarin-speaking mothers were recorded while addressing an adult and their child at two ages (7-12 months and 5 years) to examine the acoustic-phonetic differences between IDS and child–directed speech (CDS). CDS exhibits an exaggeration pattern resembling that of IDS—expanded vowel space, longer vowels, higher pitch, and greater lexical tone differences—when compared to ADS. Longitudinal analysis demonstrated that the extent of acoustic exaggeration is significantly smaller in CDS than in IDS. Age-related changes in maternal speech provide some support for the hypothesis that mothers adjust their speech directed toward children as a function of the child's language ability. PMID:19232142

  16. Mandarin Speech Perception in Combined Electric and Acoustic Stimulation

    PubMed Central

    Li, Yongxin; Zhang, Guoping; Galvin, John J.; Fu, Qian-Jie

    2014-01-01

    For deaf individuals with residual low-frequency acoustic hearing, combined use of a cochlear implant (CI) and hearing aid (HA) typically provides better speech understanding than with either device alone. Because of coarse spectral resolution, CIs do not provide fundamental frequency (F0) information that contributes to understanding of tonal languages such as Mandarin Chinese. The HA can provide good representation of F0 and, depending on the range of aided acoustic hearing, first and second formant (F1 and F2) information. In this study, Mandarin tone, vowel, and consonant recognition in quiet and noise was measured in 12 adult Mandarin-speaking bimodal listeners with the CI-only and with the CI+HA. Tone recognition was significantly better with the CI+HA in noise, but not in quiet. Vowel recognition was significantly better with the CI+HA in quiet, but not in noise. There was no significant difference in consonant recognition between the CI-only and the CI+HA in quiet or in noise. There was a wide range in bimodal benefit, with improvements often greater than 20 percentage points in some tests and conditions. The bimodal benefit was compared to CI subjects’ HA-aided pure-tone average (PTA) thresholds between 250 and 2000 Hz; subjects were divided into two groups: “better” PTA (<50 dB HL) or “poorer” PTA (>50 dB HL). The bimodal benefit differed significantly between groups only for consonant recognition. The bimodal benefit for tone recognition in quiet was significantly correlated with CI experience, suggesting that bimodal CI users learn to better combine low-frequency spectro-temporal information from acoustic hearing with temporal envelope information from electric hearing. Given the small number of subjects in this study (n = 12), further research with Chinese bimodal listeners may provide more information regarding the contribution of acoustic and electric hearing to tonal language perception. PMID:25386962

  17. Acoustical Characteristics of Mastication Sounds: Application of Speech Analysis Techniques

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brochetti, Denise

    Food scientists have used acoustical methods to study characteristics of mastication sounds in relation to food texture. However, a model for analysis of the sounds has not been identified, and reliability of the methods has not been reported. Therefore, speech analysis techniques were applied to mastication sounds, and variation in measures of the sounds was examined. To meet these objectives, two experiments were conducted. In the first experiment, a digital sound spectrograph generated waveforms and wideband spectrograms of sounds by 3 adult subjects (1 male, 2 females) for initial chews of food samples differing in hardness and fracturability. Acoustical characteristics were described and compared. For all sounds, formants appeared in the spectrograms, and energy occurred across a 0 to 8000-Hz range of frequencies. Bursts characterized waveforms for peanut, almond, raw carrot, ginger snap, and hard candy. Duration and amplitude of the sounds varied with the subjects. In the second experiment, the spectrograph was used to measure the duration, amplitude, and formants of sounds for the initial 2 chews of cylindrical food samples (raw carrot, teething toast) differing in diameter (1.27, 1.90, 2.54 cm). Six adult subjects (3 males, 3 females) having normal occlusions and temporomandibular joints chewed the samples between the molar teeth and with the mouth open. Ten repetitions per subject were examined for each food sample. Analysis of estimates of variation indicated an inconsistent intrasubject variation in the acoustical measures. Food type and sample diameter also affected the estimates, indicating the variable nature of mastication. Generally, intrasubject variation was greater than intersubject variation. Analysis of ranks of the data indicated that the effect of sample diameter on the acoustical measures was inconsistent and depended on the subject and type of food. If inferences are to be made concerning food texture from acoustical measures of mastication

  18. How stable are acoustic metrics of contrastive speech rhythm?

    PubMed

    Wiget, Lukas; White, Laurence; Schuppler, Barbara; Grenon, Izabelle; Rauch, Olesya; Mattys, Sven L

    2010-03-01

    Acoustic metrics of contrastive speech rhythm, based on vocalic and intervocalic interval durations, are intended to capture stable typological differences between languages. They should consequently be robust to variation between speakers, sentence materials, and measurers. This paper assesses the impact of these sources of variation on the metrics %V (proportion of utterance comprised of vocalic intervals), VarcoV (rate-normalized standard deviation of vocalic interval duration), and nPVI-V (a measure of the durational variability between successive pairs of vocalic intervals). Five measurers analyzed the same corpus of speech: five sentences read by six speakers of Standard Southern British English. Differences between sentences were responsible for the greatest variation in rhythm scores. Inter-speaker differences were also a source of significant variability. However, there was relatively little variation due to segmentation differences between measurers following an agreed protocol. An automated phone alignment process was also used: Rhythm scores thus derived showed good agreement with the human measurers. A number of recommendations for researchers wishing to exploit contrastive rhythm metrics are offered in conclusion. PMID:20329856

  19. Acoustic properties of naturally produced clear speech at normal speaking rates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krause, Jean C.; Braida, Louis D.

    2004-01-01

    Sentences spoken ``clearly'' are significantly more intelligible than those spoken ``conversationally'' for hearing-impaired listeners in a variety of backgrounds [Picheny et al., J. Speech Hear. Res. 28, 96-103 (1985); Uchanski et al., ibid. 39, 494-509 (1996); Payton et al., J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 95, 1581-1592 (1994)]. While producing clear speech, however, talkers often reduce their speaking rate significantly [Picheny et al., J. Speech Hear. Res. 29, 434-446 (1986); Uchanski et al., ibid. 39, 494-509 (1996)]. Yet speaking slowly is not solely responsible for the intelligibility benefit of clear speech (over conversational speech), since a recent study [Krause and Braida, J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 112, 2165-2172 (2002)] showed that talkers can produce clear speech at normal rates with training. This finding suggests that clear speech has inherent acoustic properties, independent of rate, that contribute to improved intelligibility. Identifying these acoustic properties could lead to improved signal processing schemes for hearing aids. To gain insight into these acoustical properties, conversational and clear speech produced at normal speaking rates were analyzed at three levels of detail (global, phonological, and phonetic). Although results suggest that talkers may have employed different strategies to achieve clear speech at normal rates, two global-level properties were identified that appear likely to be linked to the improvements in intelligibility provided by clear/normal speech: increased energy in the 1000-3000-Hz range of long-term spectra and increased modulation depth of low frequency modulations of the intensity envelope. Other phonological and phonetic differences associated with clear/normal speech include changes in (1) frequency of stop burst releases, (2) VOT of word-initial voiceless stop consonants, and (3) short-term vowel spectra.

  20. DARPA TIMIT acoustic-phonetic continous speech corpus CD-ROM. NIST speech disc 1-1.1

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Garofolo, J. S.; Lamel, L. F.; Fisher, W. M.; Fiscus, J. G.; Pallett, D. S.

    1993-02-01

    The Texas Instruments/Massachusetts Institute of Technology (TIMIT) corpus of read speech has been designed to provide speech data for the acquisition of acoustic-phonetic knowledge and for the development and evaluation of automatic speech recognition systems. TIMIT contains speech from 630 speakers representing 8 major dialect divisions of American English, each speaking 10 phonetically-rich sentences. The TIMIT corpus includes time-aligned orthographic, phonetic, and word transcriptions, as well as speech waveform data for each spoken sentence. The release of TIMIT contains several improvements over the Prototype CD-ROM released in December, 1988: (1) full 630-speaker corpus, (2) checked and corrected transcriptions, (3) word-alignment transcriptions, (4) NIST SPHERE-headered waveform files and header manipulation software, (5) phonemic dictionary, (6) new test and training subsets balanced for dialectal and phonetic coverage, and (7) more extensive documentation.

  1. Formant Centralization Ratio: A Proposal for a New Acoustic Measure of Dysarthric Speech

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sapir, Shimon; Ramig, Lorraine O.; Spielman, Jennifer L.; Fox, Cynthia

    2010-01-01

    Purpose: The vowel space area (VSA) has been used as an acoustic metric of dysarthric speech, but with varying degrees of success. In this study, the authors aimed to test an alternative metric to the VSA--the "formant centralization ratio" (FCR), which is hypothesized to more effectively differentiate dysarthric from healthy speech and register…

  2. Effects of Training on the Acoustic-Phonetic Representation of Synthetic Speech

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Francis, Alexander L.; Nusbaum, Howard C.; Fenn, Kimberly

    2007-01-01

    Purpose: Investigate training-related changes in acoustic-phonetic representation of consonants produced by a text-to-speech (TTS) computer speech synthesizer. Method: Forty-eight adult listeners were trained to better recognize words produced by a TTS system. Nine additional untrained participants served as controls. Before and after training,…

  3. Speech enhancement using the Modified Phase-Opponency model

    PubMed Central

    Deshmukh, Om D.; Espy-Wilson, Carol Y.; Carney, Laurel H.

    2008-01-01

    In this paper we present a model called the Modified Phase-Opponency (MPO) model for single-channel speech enhancement when the speech is corrupted by additive noise. The MPO model is based on the auditory PO model, proposed for detection of tones in noise. The PO model includes a physiologically realistic mechanism for processing the information in neural discharge times and exploits the frequency-dependent phase properties of the tuned filters in the auditory periphery by using a cross-auditory-nerve-fiber coincidence detection for extracting temporal cues. The MPO model alters the components of the PO model such that the basic functionality of the PO model is maintained but the properties of the model can be analyzed and modified independently. The MPO-based speech enhancement scheme does not need to estimate the noise characteristics nor does it assume that the noise satisfies any statistical model. The MPO technique leads to the lowest value of the LPC-based objective measures and the highest value of the PESQ measure compared to other methods when the speech signals are corrupted by fluctuating noise. Combining the MPO speech enhancement technique with our Aperiodicity, Periodicity and Pitch (APP) detector further improves its performance. PMID:17552735

  4. Speech intelligibility and speech quality of modified loudspeaker announcements examined in a simulated aircraft cabin.

    PubMed

    Pennig, Sibylle; Quehl, Julia; Wittkowski, Martin

    2014-01-01

    Acoustic modifications of loudspeaker announcements were investigated in a simulated aircraft cabin to improve passengers' speech intelligibility and quality of communication in this specific setting. Four experiments with 278 participants in total were conducted in an acoustic laboratory using a standardised speech test and subjective rating scales. In experiments 1 and 2 the sound pressure level (SPL) of the announcements was varied (ranging from 70 to 85 dB(A)). Experiments 3 and 4 focused on frequency modification (octave bands) of the announcements. All studies used a background noise with the same SPL (74 dB(A)), but recorded at different seat positions in the aircraft cabin (front, rear). The results quantify speech intelligibility improvements with increasing signal-to-noise ratio and amplification of particular octave bands, especially the 2 kHz and the 4 kHz band. Thus, loudspeaker power in an aircraft cabin can be reduced by using appropriate filter settings in the loudspeaker system. PMID:25183056

  5. Speech intelligibility and speech quality of modified loudspeaker announcements examined in a simulated aircraft cabin.

    PubMed

    Pennig, Sibylle; Quehl, Julia; Wittkowski, Martin

    2014-01-01

    Acoustic modifications of loudspeaker announcements were investigated in a simulated aircraft cabin to improve passengers' speech intelligibility and quality of communication in this specific setting. Four experiments with 278 participants in total were conducted in an acoustic laboratory using a standardised speech test and subjective rating scales. In experiments 1 and 2 the sound pressure level (SPL) of the announcements was varied (ranging from 70 to 85 dB(A)). Experiments 3 and 4 focused on frequency modification (octave bands) of the announcements. All studies used a background noise with the same SPL (74 dB(A)), but recorded at different seat positions in the aircraft cabin (front, rear). The results quantify speech intelligibility improvements with increasing signal-to-noise ratio and amplification of particular octave bands, especially the 2 kHz and the 4 kHz band. Thus, loudspeaker power in an aircraft cabin can be reduced by using appropriate filter settings in the loudspeaker system.

  6. The Use of Artificial Neural Networks to Estimate Speech Intelligibility from Acoustic Variables: A Preliminary Analysis.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Metz, Dale Evan; And Others

    1992-01-01

    A preliminary scheme for estimating the speech intelligibility of hearing-impaired speakers from acoustic parameters, using a computerized artificial neural network to process mathematically the acoustic input variables, is outlined. Tests with 60 hearing-impaired speakers found the scheme to be highly accurate in identifying speakers separated by…

  7. A maximum likelihood approach to estimating articulator positions from speech acoustics

    SciTech Connect

    Hogden, J.

    1996-09-23

    This proposal presents an algorithm called maximum likelihood continuity mapping (MALCOM) which recovers the positions of the tongue, jaw, lips, and other speech articulators from measurements of the sound-pressure waveform of speech. MALCOM differs from other techniques for recovering articulator positions from speech in three critical respects: it does not require training on measured or modeled articulator positions, it does not rely on any particular model of sound propagation through the vocal tract, and it recovers a mapping from acoustics to articulator positions that is linearly, not topographically, related to the actual mapping from acoustics to articulation. The approach categorizes short-time windows of speech into a finite number of sound types, and assumes the probability of using any articulator position to produce a given sound type can be described by a parameterized probability density function. MALCOM then uses maximum likelihood estimation techniques to: (1) find the most likely smooth articulator path given a speech sample and a set of distribution functions (one distribution function for each sound type), and (2) change the parameters of the distribution functions to better account for the data. Using this technique improves the accuracy of articulator position estimates compared to continuity mapping -- the only other technique that learns the relationship between acoustics and articulation solely from acoustics. The technique has potential application to computer speech recognition, speech synthesis and coding, teaching the hearing impaired to speak, improving foreign language instruction, and teaching dyslexics to read. 34 refs., 7 figs.

  8. Language-specific developmental differences in speech production: a cross-language acoustic study.

    PubMed

    Li, Fangfang

    2012-01-01

    Speech productions of 40 English- and 40 Japanese-speaking children (aged 2-5) were examined and compared with the speech produced by 20 adult speakers (10 speakers per language). Participants were recorded while repeating words that began with "s" and "sh" sounds. Clear language-specific patterns in adults' speech were found, with English speakers differentiating "s" and "sh" in 1 acoustic dimension (i.e., spectral mean) and Japanese speakers differentiating the 2 categories in 3 acoustic dimensions (i.e., spectral mean, standard deviation, and onset F2 frequency). For both language groups, children's speech exhibited a gradual change from an early undifferentiated form to later differentiated categories. The separation processes, however, only occur in those acoustic dimensions used by adults in the corresponding languages.

  9. A Hybrid Acoustic and Pronunciation Model Adaptation Approach for Non-native Speech Recognition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oh, Yoo Rhee; Kim, Hong Kook

    In this paper, we propose a hybrid model adaptation approach in which pronunciation and acoustic models are adapted by incorporating the pronunciation and acoustic variabilities of non-native speech in order to improve the performance of non-native automatic speech recognition (ASR). Specifically, the proposed hybrid model adaptation can be performed at either the state-tying or triphone-modeling level, depending at which acoustic model adaptation is performed. In both methods, we first analyze the pronunciation variant rules of non-native speakers and then classify each rule as either a pronunciation variant or an acoustic variant. The state-tying level hybrid method then adapts pronunciation models and acoustic models by accommodating the pronunciation variants in the pronunciation dictionary and by clustering the states of triphone acoustic models using the acoustic variants, respectively. On the other hand, the triphone-modeling level hybrid method initially adapts pronunciation models in the same way as in the state-tying level hybrid method; however, for the acoustic model adaptation, the triphone acoustic models are then re-estimated based on the adapted pronunciation models and the states of the re-estimated triphone acoustic models are clustered using the acoustic variants. From the Korean-spoken English speech recognition experiments, it is shown that ASR systems employing the state-tying and triphone-modeling level adaptation methods can relatively reduce the average word error rates (WERs) by 17.1% and 22.1% for non-native speech, respectively, when compared to a baseline ASR system.

  10. The acoustics for speech of eight auditoriums in the city of Sao Paulo

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bistafa, Sylvio R.

    2002-11-01

    Eight auditoriums with a proscenium type of stage, which usually operate as dramatic theaters in the city of Sao Paulo, were acoustically surveyed in terms of their adequacy to unassisted speech. Reverberation times, early decay times, and speech levels were measured in different positions, together with objective measures of speech intelligibility. The measurements revealed reverberation time values rather uniform throughout the rooms, whereas significant variations were found in the values of the other acoustical measures with position. The early decay time was found to be better correlated with the objective measures of speech intelligibility than the reverberation time. The results from the objective measurements of speech intelligibility revealed that the speech transmission index STI, and its simplified version RaSTI, are strongly correlated with the early-to-late sound ratio C50 (1 kHz). However, it was found that the criterion value of acceptability of the latter is more easily met than the former. The results from these measurements enable to understand how the characteristics of the architectural design determine the acoustical quality for speech. Measurements of ST1-Gade were made as an attempt to validate it as an objective measure of ''support'' for the actor. The preliminary diagnosing results with ray tracing simulations will also be presented.

  11. A magnetic resonance imaging study on the articulatory and acoustic speech parameters of Malay vowels

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    The phonetic properties of six Malay vowels are investigated using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to visualize the vocal tract in order to obtain dynamic articulatory parameters during speech production. To resolve image blurring due to the tongue movement during the scanning process, a method based on active contour extraction is used to track tongue contours. The proposed method efficiently tracks tongue contours despite the partial blurring of MRI images. Consequently, the articulatory parameters that are effectively measured as tongue movement is observed, and the specific shape of the tongue and its position for all six uttered Malay vowels are determined. Speech rehabilitation procedure demands some kind of visual perceivable prototype of speech articulation. To investigate the validity of the measured articulatory parameters based on acoustic theory of speech production, an acoustic analysis based on the uttered vowels by subjects has been performed. As the acoustic speech and articulatory parameters of uttered speech were examined, a correlation between formant frequencies and articulatory parameters was observed. The experiments reported a positive correlation between the constriction location of the tongue body and the first formant frequency, as well as a negative correlation between the constriction location of the tongue tip and the second formant frequency. The results demonstrate that the proposed method is an effective tool for the dynamic study of speech production. PMID:25060583

  12. Speech and melody recognition in binaurally combined acoustic and electric hearing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kong, Ying-Yee; Stickney, Ginger S.; Zeng, Fan-Gang

    2005-03-01

    Speech recognition in noise and music perception is especially challenging for current cochlear implant users. The present study utilizes the residual acoustic hearing in the nonimplanted ear in five cochlear implant users to elucidate the role of temporal fine structure at low frequencies in auditory perception and to test the hypothesis that combined acoustic and electric hearing produces better performance than either mode alone. The first experiment measured speech recognition in the presence of competing noise. It was found that, although the residual low-frequency (<1000 Hz) acoustic hearing produced essentially no recognition for speech recognition in noise, it significantly enhanced performance when combined with the electric hearing. The second experiment measured melody recognition in the same group of subjects and found that, contrary to the speech recognition result, the low-frequency acoustic hearing produced significantly better performance than the electric hearing. It is hypothesized that listeners with combined acoustic and electric hearing might use the correlation between the salient pitch in low-frequency acoustic hearing and the weak pitch in the envelope to enhance segregation between signal and noise. The present study suggests the importance and urgency of accurately encoding the fine-structure cue in cochlear implants. .

  13. Mathematical model of acoustic speech production with mobile walls of the vocal tract

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lyubimov, N. A.; Zakharov, E. V.

    2016-03-01

    A mathematical speech production model is considered that describes acoustic oscillation propagation in a vocal tract with mobile walls. The wave field function satisfies the Helmholtz equation with boundary conditions of the third kind (impedance type). The impedance mode corresponds to a threeparameter pendulum oscillation model. The experimental research demonstrates the nonlinear character of how the mobility of the vocal tract walls influence the spectral envelope of a speech signal.

  14. Evaluation of acoustical conditions for speech communication in working elementary school classrooms.

    PubMed

    Sato, Hiroshi; Bradley, John S

    2008-04-01

    Detailed acoustical measurements were made in 41 working elementary school classrooms near Ottawa, Canada to obtain more representative and more accurate indications of the acoustical quality of conditions for speech communication during actual teaching activities. This paper describes the room acoustics characteristics and noise environment of 27 traditional rectangular classrooms from the 41 measured rooms. The purpose of the work was to better understand how to improve speech communication between teachers and students. The study found, that on average, the students experienced: teacher speech levels of 60.4 dB A, noise levels of 49.1 dB A, and a mean speech-to-noise ratio of 11 dB A during teaching activities. The mean reverberation time in the occupied classrooms was 0.41 s, which was 10% less than in the unoccupied rooms. The reverberation time measurements were used to determine the average absorption added by each student. Detailed analyses of early and late-arriving speech sounds showed these sound levels could be predicted quite accurately and suggest improved approaches to room acoustics design.

  15. Vowel Acoustics in Adults with Apraxia of Speech

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jacks, Adam; Mathes, Katey A.; Marquardt, Thomas P.

    2010-01-01

    Purpose: To investigate the hypothesis that vowel production is more variable in adults with acquired apraxia of speech (AOS) relative to healthy individuals with unimpaired speech. Vowel formant frequency measures were selected as the specific target of focus. Method: Seven adults with AOS and aphasia produced 15 repetitions of 6 American English…

  16. Precategorical Acoustic Storage and the Perception of Speech

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Frankish, Clive

    2008-01-01

    Theoretical accounts of both speech perception and of short term memory must consider the extent to which perceptual representations of speech sounds might survive in relatively unprocessed form. This paper describes a novel version of the serial recall task that can be used to explore this area of shared interest. In immediate recall of digit…

  17. Acoustic properties of vowels in clear and conversational speech by female non-native English speakers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Chi-Nin; So, Connie K.

    2005-04-01

    Studies have shown that talkers can improve the intelligibility of their speech when instructed to speak as if talking to a hearing-impaired person. The improvement of speech intelligibility is associated with specific acoustic-phonetic changes: increases in vowel duration and fundamental frequency (F0), a wider pitch range, and a shift in formant frequencies for F1 and F2. Most previous studies of clear speech production have been conducted with native speakers; research with second language speakers is much less common. The present study examined the acoustic properties of non-native English vowels produced in a clear speaking style. Five female Cantonese speakers and a comparison group of English speakers were recorded producing four vowels (/i u ae a/) in /bVt/ context in conversational and clear speech. Vowel durations, F0, pitch range, and the first two formants for each of the four vowels were measured. Analyses revealed that for both groups of speakers, vowel durations, F0, pitch range, and F1 spoken clearly were greater than those produced conversationally. However, F2 was higher in conversational speech than in clear speech. The findings suggest that female non-native English speakers exhibit acoustic-phonetic patterns similar to those of native speakers when asked to produce English vowels clearly.

  18. Speech privacy and annoyance considerations in the acoustic environment of passenger cars of high-speed trains.

    PubMed

    Jeon, Jin Yong; Hong, Joo Young; Jang, Hyung Suk; Kim, Jae Hyeon

    2015-12-01

    It is necessary to consider not only annoyance of interior noises but also speech privacy to achieve acoustic comfort in a passenger car of a high-speed train because speech from other passengers can be annoying. This study aimed to explore an optimal acoustic environment to satisfy speech privacy and reduce annoyance in a passenger car. Two experiments were conducted using speech sources and compartment noise of a high speed train with varying speech-to-noise ratios (SNRA) and background noise levels (BNL). Speech intelligibility was tested in experiment I, and in experiment II, perceived speech privacy, annoyance, and acoustic comfort of combined sounds with speech and background noise were assessed. The results show that speech privacy and annoyance were significantly influenced by the SNRA. In particular, the acoustic comfort was evaluated as acceptable when the SNRA was less than -6 dB for both speech privacy and noise annoyance. In addition, annoyance increased significantly as the BNL exceeded 63 dBA, whereas the effect of the background-noise level on the speech privacy was not significant. These findings suggest that an optimal level of interior noise in a passenger car might exist between 59 and 63 dBA, taking normal speech levels into account.

  19. Education in acoustics and speech science using vocal-tract models.

    PubMed

    Arai, Takayuki

    2012-03-01

    Several vocal-tract models were reviewed, with special focus given to the sliding vocal-tract model [T. Arai, Acoust. Sci. Technol. 27(6), 384-388 (2006)]. All of the models have been shown to be excellent tools for teaching acoustics and speech science to elementary through university level students. The sliding three-tube model is based on Fant's three-tube model [G. Fant, Acoustic Theory of Speech Production (Mouton, The Hague, The Netherlands, 2006)] and consists of a long tube with a slider simulating tongue constriction. In this article, the design of the sliding vocal-tract model was reviewed. Then a science workshop was discussed where children were asked to make their own sliding vocal-tract models using simple materials. It was also discussed how the sliding vocal-tract model compares to our other vocal-tract models, emphasizing how the model can be used to instruct students at higher levels, such as undergraduate and graduate education in acoustics and speech science. Through this discussion the vocal-tract models were shown to be a powerful tool for education in acoustics and speech science for all ages of students.

  20. Perceiving speech in context: Compensation for contextual variability during acoustic cue encoding and categorization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Toscano, Joseph Christopher

    Several fundamental questions about speech perception concern how listeners understand spoken language despite considerable variability in speech sounds across different contexts (the problem of lack of invariance in speech). This contextual variability is caused by several factors, including differences between individual talkers' voices, variation in speaking rate, and effects of coarticulatory context. A number of models have been proposed to describe how the speech system handles differences across contexts. Critically, these models make different predictions about (1) whether contextual variability is handled at the level of acoustic cue encoding or categorization, (2) whether it is driven by feedback from category-level processes or interactions between cues, and (3) whether listeners discard fine-grained acoustic information to compensate for contextual variability. Separating the effects of cue- and category-level processing has been difficult because behavioral measures tap processes that occur well after initial cue encoding and are influenced by task demands and linguistic information. Recently, we have used the event-related brain potential (ERP) technique to examine cue encoding and online categorization. Specifically, we have looked at differences in the auditory N1 as a measure of acoustic cue encoding and the P3 as a measure of categorization. This allows us to examine multiple levels of processing during speech perception and can provide a useful tool for studying effects of contextual variability. Here, I apply this approach to determine the point in processing at which context has an effect on speech perception and to examine whether acoustic cues are encoded continuously. Several types of contextual variability (talker gender, speaking rate, and coarticulation), as well as several acoustic cues (voice onset time, formant frequencies, and bandwidths), are examined in a series of experiments. The results suggest that (1) at early stages of speech

  1. A speech processing study using an acoustic model of a multiple-channel cochlear implant

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, Ying

    1998-10-01

    A cochlear implant is an electronic device designed to provide sound information for adults and children who have bilateral profound hearing loss. The task of representing speech signals as electrical stimuli is central to the design and performance of cochlear implants. Studies have shown that the current speech- processing strategies provide significant benefits to cochlear implant users. However, the evaluation and development of speech-processing strategies have been complicated by hardware limitations and large variability in user performance. To alleviate these problems, an acoustic model of a cochlear implant with the SPEAK strategy is implemented in this study, in which a set of acoustic stimuli whose psychophysical characteristics are as close as possible to those produced by a cochlear implant are presented on normal-hearing subjects. To test the effectiveness and feasibility of this acoustic model, a psychophysical experiment was conducted to match the performance of a normal-hearing listener using model- processed signals to that of a cochlear implant user. Good agreement was found between an implanted patient and an age-matched normal-hearing subject in a dynamic signal discrimination experiment, indicating that this acoustic model is a reasonably good approximation of a cochlear implant with the SPEAK strategy. The acoustic model was then used to examine the potential of the SPEAK strategy in terms of its temporal and frequency encoding of speech. It was hypothesized that better temporal and frequency encoding of speech can be accomplished by higher stimulation rates and a larger number of activated channels. Vowel and consonant recognition tests were conducted on normal-hearing subjects using speech tokens processed by the acoustic model, with different combinations of stimulation rate and number of activated channels. The results showed that vowel recognition was best at 600 pps and 8 activated channels, but further increases in stimulation rate and

  2. Aging Affects Neural Synchronization to Speech-Related Acoustic Modulations

    PubMed Central

    Goossens, Tine; Vercammen, Charlotte; Wouters, Jan; van Wieringen, Astrid

    2016-01-01

    As people age, speech perception problems become highly prevalent, especially in noisy situations. In addition to peripheral hearing and cognition, temporal processing plays a key role in speech perception. Temporal processing of speech features is mediated by synchronized activity of neural oscillations in the central auditory system. Previous studies indicate that both the degree and hemispheric lateralization of synchronized neural activity relate to speech perception performance. Based on these results, we hypothesize that impaired speech perception in older persons may, in part, originate from deviances in neural synchronization. In this study, auditory steady-state responses that reflect synchronized activity of theta, beta, low and high gamma oscillations (i.e., 4, 20, 40, and 80 Hz ASSR, respectively) were recorded in young, middle-aged, and older persons. As all participants had normal audiometric thresholds and were screened for (mild) cognitive impairment, differences in synchronized neural activity across the three age groups were likely to be attributed to age. Our data yield novel findings regarding theta and high gamma oscillations in the aging auditory system. At an older age, synchronized activity of theta oscillations is increased, whereas high gamma synchronization is decreased. In contrast to young persons who exhibit a right hemispheric dominance for processing of high gamma range modulations, older adults show a symmetrical processing pattern. These age-related changes in neural synchronization may very well underlie the speech perception problems in aging persons. PMID:27378906

  3. Low-frequency speech cues and simulated electric-acoustic hearing

    PubMed Central

    Brown, Christopher A.; Bacon, Sid P.

    2009-01-01

    The addition of low-frequency acoustic information to real or simulated electric stimulation (so-called electric-acoustic stimulation or EAS) often results in large improvements in intelligibility, particularly in competing backgrounds. This may reflect the availability of fundamental frequency (F0) information in the acoustic region. The contributions of F0 and the amplitude envelope (as well as voicing) of speech to simulated EAS was examined by replacing the low-frequency speech with a tone that was modulated in frequency to track the F0 of the speech, in amplitude with the envelope of the low-frequency speech, or both. A four-channel vocoder simulated electric hearing. Significant benefit over vocoder alone was observed with the addition of a tone carrying F0 or envelope cues, and both cues combined typically provided significantly more benefit than either alone. The intelligibility improvement over vocoder was between 24 and 57 percentage points, and was unaffected by the presence of a tone carrying these cues from a background talker. These results confirm the importance of the F0 of target speech for EAS (in simulation). They indicate that significant benefit can be provided by a tone carrying F0 and amplitude envelope cues. The results support a glimpsing account of EAS and argue against segregation. PMID:19275323

  4. Acoustic and Articulatory Features of Diphthong Production: A Speech Clarity Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tasko, Stephen M.; Greilick, Kristin

    2010-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of this study was to evaluate how speaking clearly influences selected acoustic and orofacial kinematic measures associated with diphthong production. Method: Forty-nine speakers, drawn from the University of Wisconsin X-Ray Microbeam Speech Production Database (J. R. Westbury, 1994), served as participants. Samples of clear…

  5. Effects of contextual cues on speech recognition in simulated electric-acoustic stimulation.

    PubMed

    Kong, Ying-Yee; Donaldson, Gail; Somarowthu, Ala

    2015-05-01

    Low-frequency acoustic cues have shown to improve speech perception in cochlear-implant listeners. However, the mechanisms underlying this benefit are still not well understood. This study investigated the extent to which low-frequency cues can facilitate listeners' use of linguistic knowledge in simulated electric-acoustic stimulation (EAS). Experiment 1 examined differences in the magnitude of EAS benefit at the phoneme, word, and sentence levels. Speech materials were processed via noise-channel vocoding and lowpass (LP) filtering. The amount of spectral degradation in the vocoder speech was varied by applying different numbers of vocoder channels. Normal-hearing listeners were tested on vocoder-alone, LP-alone, and vocoder + LP conditions. Experiment 2 further examined factors that underlie the context effect on EAS benefit at the sentence level by limiting the low-frequency cues to temporal envelope and periodicity (AM + FM). Results showed that EAS benefit was greater for higher-context than for lower-context speech materials even when the LP ear received only low-frequency AM + FM cues. Possible explanations for the greater EAS benefit observed with higher-context materials may lie in the interplay between perceptual and expectation-driven processes for EAS speech recognition, and/or the band-importance functions for different types of speech materials. PMID:25994712

  6. Effects of contextual cues on speech recognition in simulated electric-acoustic stimulation

    PubMed Central

    Kong, Ying-Yee; Donaldson, Gail; Somarowthu, Ala

    2015-01-01

    Low-frequency acoustic cues have shown to improve speech perception in cochlear-implant listeners. However, the mechanisms underlying this benefit are still not well understood. This study investigated the extent to which low-frequency cues can facilitate listeners' use of linguistic knowledge in simulated electric-acoustic stimulation (EAS). Experiment 1 examined differences in the magnitude of EAS benefit at the phoneme, word, and sentence levels. Speech materials were processed via noise-channel vocoding and lowpass (LP) filtering. The amount of spectral degradation in the vocoder speech was varied by applying different numbers of vocoder channels. Normal-hearing listeners were tested on vocoder-alone, LP-alone, and vocoder + LP conditions. Experiment 2 further examined factors that underlie the context effect on EAS benefit at the sentence level by limiting the low-frequency cues to temporal envelope and periodicity (AM + FM). Results showed that EAS benefit was greater for higher-context than for lower-context speech materials even when the LP ear received only low-frequency AM + FM cues. Possible explanations for the greater EAS benefit observed with higher-context materials may lie in the interplay between perceptual and expectation-driven processes for EAS speech recognition, and/or the band-importance functions for different types of speech materials. PMID:25994712

  7. Contributions of electric and acoustic hearing to bimodal speech and music perception.

    PubMed

    Crew, Joseph D; Galvin, John J; Landsberger, David M; Fu, Qian-Jie

    2015-01-01

    Cochlear implant (CI) users have difficulty understanding speech in noisy listening conditions and perceiving music. Aided residual acoustic hearing in the contralateral ear can mitigate these limitations. The present study examined contributions of electric and acoustic hearing to speech understanding in noise and melodic pitch perception. Data was collected with the CI only, the hearing aid (HA) only, and both devices together (CI+HA). Speech reception thresholds (SRTs) were adaptively measured for simple sentences in speech babble. Melodic contour identification (MCI) was measured with and without a masker instrument; the fundamental frequency of the masker was varied to be overlapping or non-overlapping with the target contour. Results showed that the CI contributes primarily to bimodal speech perception and that the HA contributes primarily to bimodal melodic pitch perception. In general, CI+HA performance was slightly improved relative to the better ear alone (CI-only) for SRTs but not for MCI, with some subjects experiencing a decrease in bimodal MCI performance relative to the better ear alone (HA-only). Individual performance was highly variable, and the contribution of either device to bimodal perception was both subject- and task-dependent. The results suggest that individualized mapping of CIs and HAs may further improve bimodal speech and music perception. PMID:25790349

  8. Primary Progressive Apraxia of Speech: Clinical Features and Acoustic and Neurologic Correlates

    PubMed Central

    Strand, Edythe A.; Clark, Heather; Machulda, Mary; Whitwell, Jennifer L.; Josephs, Keith A.

    2015-01-01

    Purpose This study summarizes 2 illustrative cases of a neurodegenerative speech disorder, primary progressive apraxia of speech (AOS), as a vehicle for providing an overview of the disorder and an approach to describing and quantifying its perceptual features and some of its temporal acoustic attributes. Method Two individuals with primary progressive AOS underwent speech-language and neurologic evaluations on 2 occasions, ranging from 2.0 to 7.5 years postonset. Performance on several tests, tasks, and rating scales, as well as several acoustic measures, were compared over time within and between cases. Acoustic measures were compared with performance of control speakers. Results Both patients initially presented with AOS as the only or predominant sign of disease and without aphasia or dysarthria. The presenting features and temporal progression were captured in an AOS Rating Scale, an Articulation Error Score, and temporal acoustic measures of utterance duration, syllable rates per second, rates of speechlike alternating motion and sequential motion, and a pairwise variability index measure. Conclusions AOS can be the predominant manifestation of neurodegenerative disease. Clinical ratings of its attributes and acoustic measures of some of its temporal characteristics can support its diagnosis and help quantify its salient characteristics and progression over time. PMID:25654422

  9. The advantages of sound localization and speech perception of bilateral electric acoustic stimulation

    PubMed Central

    Moteki, Hideaki; Kitoh, Ryosuke; Tsukada, Keita; Iwasaki, Satoshi; Nishio, Shin-Ya

    2015-01-01

    Conclusion: Bilateral electric acoustic stimulation (EAS) effectively improved speech perception in noise and sound localization in patients with high-frequency hearing loss. Objective: To evaluate bilateral EAS efficacy of sound localization detection and speech perception in noise in two cases of high-frequency hearing loss. Methods: Two female patients, aged 38 and 45 years, respectively, received bilateral EAS sequentially. Pure-tone audiometry was performed preoperatively and postoperatively to evaluate the hearing preservation in the lower frequencies. Speech perception outcomes in quiet and noise and sound localization were assessed with unilateral and bilateral EAS. Results: Residual hearing in the lower frequencies was well preserved after insertion of a FLEX24 electrode (24 mm) using the round window approach. After bilateral EAS, speech perception improved in quiet and even more so in noise. In addition, the sound localization ability of both cases with bilateral EAS improved remarkably. PMID:25423260

  10. Vowel Acoustics in Dysarthria: Speech Disorder Diagnosis and Classification

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lansford, Kaitlin L.; Liss, Julie M.

    2014-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of this study was to determine the extent to which vowel metrics are capable of distinguishing healthy from dysarthric speech and among different forms of dysarthria. Method: A variety of vowel metrics were derived from spectral and temporal measurements of vowel tokens embedded in phrases produced by 45 speakers with…

  11. Contribution of Consonant Landmarks to Speech Recognition in Simulated Acoustic-Electric Hearing

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Fei; Loizou, Philipos C.

    2009-01-01

    Objectives The purpose of this study is to assess the contribution of information provided by obstruent consonants (e.g. stops, fricatives) to speech intelligibility in simulated acoustic-electric hearing. As a secondary objective, this study examines the performance of an objective measure that can potentially be used for predicting the intelligibility of vocoded speech. Design Noise-corrupted sentences are used in Exp. 1 in which the noise-corrupted obstruent consonants are replaced with clean obstruent consonants, while leaving the sonorant sounds (vowels, semivowels and nasals) corrupted. In one condition, listeners have only access to the low-frequency (<600 Hz) acoustic portion of the clean consonant spectra, in another condition listeners have only access to the higher frequency (>600 Hz) portion (vocoded) of the clean consonant spectra, and in the third condition they have access to both. In Exp. 2, we investigate a speech-coding strategy that selectively attenuates the low-frequency portion of the consonant spectra while leaving the vocoded portion corrupted by noise. Finally, using the data collected from Exp. 1 and 2, we evaluate the performance of an objective measure in terms of predicting intelligibility of vocoded speech. This measure was originally designed to predict speech quality and has never been evaluated with vocoded speech. Results Significant improvements (about 30 percentage points) in intelligibility were noted in Exp. 1 in steady and two-talker masker conditions when the listeners had access to the clean obstruent consonants in both the acoustic and vocoded portions of the spectrum. The improvement was more evident in the low SNR levels (−5 and 0 dB). Further analysis indicated that it was access to the vocoded portion of the consonant spectra, rather than access to the low-frequency acoustic portion of the consonant spectra that contributed the most to the large improvements in performance. In Exp. 2, a small (14 percentage points

  12. Fundamental frequency is critical to speech perception in noise in combined acoustic and electric hearinga

    PubMed Central

    Carroll, Jeff; Tiaden, Stephanie; Zeng, Fan-Gang

    2011-01-01

    Cochlear implant (CI) users have been shown to benefit from residual low-frequency hearing, specifically in pitch related tasks. It remains unclear whether this benefit is dependent on fundamental frequency (F0) or other acoustic cues. Three experiments were conducted to determine the role of F0, as well as its frequency modulated (FM) and amplitude modulated (AM) components, in speech recognition with a competing voice. In simulated CI listeners, the signal-to-noise ratio was varied to estimate the 50% correct response. Simulation results showed that the F0 cue contributes to a significant proportion of the benefit seen with combined acoustic and electric hearing, and additionally that this benefit is due to the FM rather than the AM component. In actual CI users, sentence recognition scores were collected with either the full F0 cue containing both the FM and AM components or the 500-Hz low-pass speech cue containing the F0 and additional harmonics. The F0 cue provided a benefit similar to the low-pass cue for speech in noise, but not in quiet. Poorer CI users benefited more from the F0 cue than better users. These findings suggest that F0 is critical to improving speech perception in noise in combined acoustic and electric hearing. PMID:21973360

  13. A Chimpanzee Recognizes Synthetic Speech With Significantly Reduced Acoustic Cues to Phonetic Content

    PubMed Central

    Heimbauer, Lisa A.; Beran, Michael J.; Owren, Michael J.

    2011-01-01

    Summary A long-standing debate concerns whether humans are specialized for speech perception [1–7], which some researchers argue is demonstrated by the ability to understand synthetic speech with significantly reduced acoustic cues to phonetic content [2–4,7]. We tested a chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes) that recognizes 128 spoken words [8,9], asking whether she could understand such speech. Three experiments presented 48 individual words, with the animal selecting a corresponding visuo-graphic symbol from among four alternatives. Experiment 1 tested spectrally reduced, noise-vocoded (NV) synthesis, originally developed to simulate input received by human cochlear-implant users [10]. Experiment 2 tested “impossibly unspeechlike” [3] sine-wave (SW) synthesis, which reduces speech to just three moving tones [11]. Although receiving only intermittent and non-contingent reward, the chimpanzee performed well above chance level, including when hearing synthetic versions for the first time. Recognition of SW words was least accurate, but improved in Experiment 3 when natural words in the same session were rewarded. The chimpanzee was more accurate with NV than SW versions, as were 32 human participants hearing these items. The chimpanzee's ability to spontaneously recognize acoustically reduced synthetic words suggests that experience rather than specialization is critical for speech-perception capabilities that some have suggested are uniquely human [12–14]. PMID:21723125

  14. Formant Centralization Ratio (FCR): A proposal for a new acoustic measure of dysarthric speech

    PubMed Central

    Sapir, Shimon; Ramig, Lorraine O.; Spielman, Jennifer L.; Fox, Cynthia

    2009-01-01

    Background and Aims The vowel space area (VSA) has been used as an acoustic metric of dysarthric speech, but with varying degrees of success. Here we test an alternative metric -- Formant centralization ratio (FCR) -- that is hypothesized to more effectively differentiate dysarthric from healthy speech and register treatment effects. Methods Speech recordings of 38 individuals with idiopathic Parkinson disease (IPD) and dysarthria (19 of whom received one month of intensive speech therapy (LSVT® LOUD)) and 14 healthy controls were acoustically analyzed. Vowels were extracted from short phrases. The same vowel-formant elements were used to construct the FCR, expressed as (F2u+F2𝔞+F1i+F1u)/(F2i+F1𝔞), the VSA, expressed as ABS((F1i*(F2𝔞–F2u)+F1𝔞*(F2u–F2i)+F1u*(F2i–F2𝔞))/2), a logarithmically scaled version of the VSA (LnVSA), and the F2i/F2u ratio. Results Unlike the VSA and the LnVSA, the FCR and F2i/F2u robustly differentiated dysarthric from healthy speech and were not gender-sensitive. All metrics effectively registered treatment effects and were strongly correlated with each other. Conclusions Albeit preliminary, the present findings indicate that the FCR is a sensitive, valid and reliable acoustic metric for distinguishing dysarthric from normal speech and for monitoring treatment effects, probably so because of reduced sensitivity to inter-speaker variability and enhanced sensitivity to vowel centralization. PMID:19948755

  15. Modified electron acoustic field and energy applied to observation data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abdelwahed, H. G.; El-Shewy, E. K.

    2016-08-01

    Improved electrostatic acoustic field and energy have been debated in vortex trapped hot electrons and fluid of cold electrons with pressure term plasmas. The perturbed higher-order modified-Korteweg-de Vries equation (PhomKdV) has been worked out. The effect of trapping and electron temperatures on the electro-field and energy properties in auroral plasmas has been inspected.

  16. Speech Recognition and Acoustic Features in Combined Electric and Acoustic Stimulation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Yoon, Yang-soo; Li, Yongxin; Fu, Qian-Jie

    2012-01-01

    Purpose: In this study, the authors aimed to identify speech information processed by a hearing aid (HA) that is additive to information processed by a cochlear implant (CI) as a function of signal-to-noise ratio (SNR). Method: Speech recognition was measured with CI alone, HA alone, and CI + HA. Ten participants were separated into 2 groups; good…

  17. From prosodic structure to acoustic saliency: A fMRI investigation of speech rate, clarity, and emphasis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Golfinopoulos, Elisa

    Acoustic variability in fluent speech can arise at many stages in speech production planning and execution. For example, at the phonological encoding stage, the grouping of phonemes into syllables determines which segments are coarticulated and, by consequence, segment-level acoustic variation. Likewise phonetic encoding, which determines the spatiotemporal extent of articulatory gestures, will affect the acoustic detail of segments. Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) was used to measure brain activity of fluent adult speakers in four speaking conditions: fast, normal, clear, and emphatic (or stressed) speech. These speech manner changes typically result in acoustic variations that do not change the lexical or semantic identity of productions but do affect the acoustic saliency of phonemes, syllables and/or words. Acoustic responses recorded inside the scanner were assessed quantitatively using eight acoustic measures and sentence duration was used as a covariate of non-interest in the neuroimaging analysis. Compared to normal speech, emphatic speech was characterized acoustically by a greater difference between stressed and unstressed vowels in intensity, duration, and fundamental frequency, and neurally by increased activity in right middle premotor cortex and supplementary motor area, and bilateral primary sensorimotor cortex. These findings are consistent with right-lateralized motor planning of prosodic variation in emphatic speech. Clear speech involved an increase in average vowel and sentence durations and average vowel spacing, along with increased activity in left middle premotor cortex and bilateral primary sensorimotor cortex. These findings are consistent with an increased reliance on feedforward control, resulting in hyper-articulation, under clear as compared to normal speech. Fast speech was characterized acoustically by reduced sentence duration and average vowel spacing, and neurally by increased activity in left anterior frontal

  18. Knowledge and attitudes of teachers regarding the impact of classroom acoustics on speech perception and learning.

    PubMed

    Ramma, Lebogang

    2009-01-01

    This study investigated the knowledge and attitude of primary school teachers regarding the impact of poor classroom acoustics on learners' speech perception and learning in class. Classrooms with excessive background noise and reflective surfaces could be a barrier to learning, and it is important that teachers are aware of this. There is currently limited research data about teachers' knowledge regarding the topic of classroom acoustics. Seventy teachers from three Johannesburg primary schools participated in this study. A survey by way of structured self-administered questionnaire was the primary data collection method. The findings of this study showed that most of the participants in this study did not have adequate knowledge of classroom acoustics. Most of the participants were also unaware of the impact that classrooms with poor acoustic environments can have on speech perception and learning. These results are discussed in relation to the practical implication of empowering teachers to manage the acoustic environment of their classrooms, limitations of the study as well as implications for future research.

  19. An eighth-scale speech source for subjective assessments in acoustic models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Orlowski, R. J.

    1981-08-01

    The design of a source is described which is suitable for making speech recordings in eighth-scale acoustic models of auditoria. An attempt was made to match the directionality of the source with the directionality of the human voice using data reported in the literature. A narrow aperture was required for the design which was provided by mounting an inverted conical horn over the diaphragm of a high frequency loudspeaker. Resonance problems were encountered with the use of a horn and a description is given of the electronic techniques adopted to minimize the effect of these resonances. Subjective and objective assessments on the completed speech source have proved satisfactory. It has been used in a modelling exercise concerned with the acoustic design of a theatre with a thrust-type stage.

  20. Acoustic-Phonetic Differences between Infant- and Adult-Directed Speech: The Role of Stress and Utterance Position

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wang, Yuanyuan; Seidl, Amanda; Cristia, Alejandrina

    2015-01-01

    Previous studies have shown that infant-directed speech (IDS) differs from adult-directed speech (ADS) on a variety of dimensions. The aim of the current study was to investigate whether acoustic differences between IDS and ADS in English are modulated by prosodic structure. We compared vowels across the two registers (IDS, ADS) in both stressed…

  1. Speech after Radial Forearm Free Flap Reconstruction of the Tongue: A Longitudinal Acoustic Study of Vowel and Diphthong Sounds

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Laaksonen, Juha-Pertti; Rieger, Jana; Happonen, Risto-Pekka; Harris, Jeffrey; Seikaly, Hadi

    2010-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to use acoustic analyses to describe speech outcomes over the course of 1 year after radial forearm free flap (RFFF) reconstruction of the tongue. Eighteen Canadian English-speaking females and males with reconstruction for oral cancer had speech samples recorded (pre-operative, and 1 month, 6 months, and 1 year…

  2. Are you a good mimic? Neuro-acoustic signatures for speech imitation ability.

    PubMed

    Reiterer, Susanne M; Hu, Xiaochen; Sumathi, T A; Singh, Nandini C

    2013-01-01

    We investigated individual differences in speech imitation ability in late bilinguals using a neuro-acoustic approach. One hundred and thirty-eight German-English bilinguals matched on various behavioral measures were tested for "speech imitation ability" in a foreign language, Hindi, and categorized into "high" and "low ability" groups. Brain activations and speech recordings were obtained from 26 participants from the two extreme groups as they performed a functional neuroimaging experiment which required them to "imitate" sentences in three conditions: (A) German, (B) English, and (C) German with fake English accent. We used recently developed novel acoustic analysis, namely the "articulation space" as a metric to compare speech imitation abilities of the two groups. Across all three conditions, direct comparisons between the two groups, revealed brain activations (FWE corrected, p < 0.05) that were more widespread with significantly higher peak activity in the left supramarginal gyrus and postcentral areas for the low ability group. The high ability group, on the other hand showed significantly larger articulation space in all three conditions. In addition, articulation space also correlated positively with imitation ability (Pearson's r = 0.7, p < 0.01). Our results suggest that an expanded articulation space for high ability individuals allows access to a larger repertoire of sounds, thereby providing skilled imitators greater flexibility in pronunciation and language learning. PMID:24155739

  3. Are you a good mimic? Neuro-acoustic signatures for speech imitation ability

    PubMed Central

    Reiterer, Susanne M.; Hu, Xiaochen; Sumathi, T. A.; Singh, Nandini C.

    2013-01-01

    We investigated individual differences in speech imitation ability in late bilinguals using a neuro-acoustic approach. One hundred and thirty-eight German-English bilinguals matched on various behavioral measures were tested for “speech imitation ability” in a foreign language, Hindi, and categorized into “high” and “low ability” groups. Brain activations and speech recordings were obtained from 26 participants from the two extreme groups as they performed a functional neuroimaging experiment which required them to “imitate” sentences in three conditions: (A) German, (B) English, and (C) German with fake English accent. We used recently developed novel acoustic analysis, namely the “articulation space” as a metric to compare speech imitation abilities of the two groups. Across all three conditions, direct comparisons between the two groups, revealed brain activations (FWE corrected, p < 0.05) that were more widespread with significantly higher peak activity in the left supramarginal gyrus and postcentral areas for the low ability group. The high ability group, on the other hand showed significantly larger articulation space in all three conditions. In addition, articulation space also correlated positively with imitation ability (Pearson's r = 0.7, p < 0.01). Our results suggest that an expanded articulation space for high ability individuals allows access to a larger repertoire of sounds, thereby providing skilled imitators greater flexibility in pronunciation and language learning. PMID:24155739

  4. Are you a good mimic? Neuro-acoustic signatures for speech imitation ability.

    PubMed

    Reiterer, Susanne M; Hu, Xiaochen; Sumathi, T A; Singh, Nandini C

    2013-01-01

    We investigated individual differences in speech imitation ability in late bilinguals using a neuro-acoustic approach. One hundred and thirty-eight German-English bilinguals matched on various behavioral measures were tested for "speech imitation ability" in a foreign language, Hindi, and categorized into "high" and "low ability" groups. Brain activations and speech recordings were obtained from 26 participants from the two extreme groups as they performed a functional neuroimaging experiment which required them to "imitate" sentences in three conditions: (A) German, (B) English, and (C) German with fake English accent. We used recently developed novel acoustic analysis, namely the "articulation space" as a metric to compare speech imitation abilities of the two groups. Across all three conditions, direct comparisons between the two groups, revealed brain activations (FWE corrected, p < 0.05) that were more widespread with significantly higher peak activity in the left supramarginal gyrus and postcentral areas for the low ability group. The high ability group, on the other hand showed significantly larger articulation space in all three conditions. In addition, articulation space also correlated positively with imitation ability (Pearson's r = 0.7, p < 0.01). Our results suggest that an expanded articulation space for high ability individuals allows access to a larger repertoire of sounds, thereby providing skilled imitators greater flexibility in pronunciation and language learning.

  5. Acoustic-Emergent Phonology in the Amplitude Envelope of Child-Directed Speech.

    PubMed

    Leong, Victoria; Goswami, Usha

    2015-01-01

    When acquiring language, young children may use acoustic spectro-temporal patterns in speech to derive phonological units in spoken language (e.g., prosodic stress patterns, syllables, phonemes). Children appear to learn acoustic-phonological mappings rapidly, without direct instruction, yet the underlying developmental mechanisms remain unclear. Across different languages, a relationship between amplitude envelope sensitivity and phonological development has been found, suggesting that children may make use of amplitude modulation (AM) patterns within the envelope to develop a phonological system. Here we present the Spectral Amplitude Modulation Phase Hierarchy (S-AMPH) model, a set of algorithms for deriving the dominant AM patterns in child-directed speech (CDS). Using Principal Components Analysis, we show that rhythmic CDS contains an AM hierarchy comprising 3 core modulation timescales. These timescales correspond to key phonological units: prosodic stress (Stress AM, ~2 Hz), syllables (Syllable AM, ~5 Hz) and onset-rime units (Phoneme AM, ~20 Hz). We argue that these AM patterns could in principle be used by naïve listeners to compute acoustic-phonological mappings without lexical knowledge. We then demonstrate that the modulation statistics within this AM hierarchy indeed parse the speech signal into a primitive hierarchically-organised phonological system comprising stress feet (proto-words), syllables and onset-rime units. We apply the S-AMPH model to two other CDS corpora, one spontaneous and one deliberately-timed. The model accurately identified 72-82% (freely-read CDS) and 90-98% (rhythmically-regular CDS) stress patterns, syllables and onset-rime units. This in-principle demonstration that primitive phonology can be extracted from speech AMs is termed Acoustic-Emergent Phonology (AEP) theory. AEP theory provides a set of methods for examining how early phonological development is shaped by the temporal modulation structure of speech across

  6. Acoustic-Emergent Phonology in the Amplitude Envelope of Child-Directed Speech

    PubMed Central

    Leong, Victoria; Goswami, Usha

    2015-01-01

    When acquiring language, young children may use acoustic spectro-temporal patterns in speech to derive phonological units in spoken language (e.g., prosodic stress patterns, syllables, phonemes). Children appear to learn acoustic-phonological mappings rapidly, without direct instruction, yet the underlying developmental mechanisms remain unclear. Across different languages, a relationship between amplitude envelope sensitivity and phonological development has been found, suggesting that children may make use of amplitude modulation (AM) patterns within the envelope to develop a phonological system. Here we present the Spectral Amplitude Modulation Phase Hierarchy (S-AMPH) model, a set of algorithms for deriving the dominant AM patterns in child-directed speech (CDS). Using Principal Components Analysis, we show that rhythmic CDS contains an AM hierarchy comprising 3 core modulation timescales. These timescales correspond to key phonological units: prosodic stress (Stress AM, ~2 Hz), syllables (Syllable AM, ~5 Hz) and onset-rime units (Phoneme AM, ~20 Hz). We argue that these AM patterns could in principle be used by naïve listeners to compute acoustic-phonological mappings without lexical knowledge. We then demonstrate that the modulation statistics within this AM hierarchy indeed parse the speech signal into a primitive hierarchically-organised phonological system comprising stress feet (proto-words), syllables and onset-rime units. We apply the S-AMPH model to two other CDS corpora, one spontaneous and one deliberately-timed. The model accurately identified 72–82% (freely-read CDS) and 90–98% (rhythmically-regular CDS) stress patterns, syllables and onset-rime units. This in-principle demonstration that primitive phonology can be extracted from speech AMs is termed Acoustic-Emergent Phonology (AEP) theory. AEP theory provides a set of methods for examining how early phonological development is shaped by the temporal modulation structure of speech across

  7. Acoustic-Emergent Phonology in the Amplitude Envelope of Child-Directed Speech.

    PubMed

    Leong, Victoria; Goswami, Usha

    2015-01-01

    When acquiring language, young children may use acoustic spectro-temporal patterns in speech to derive phonological units in spoken language (e.g., prosodic stress patterns, syllables, phonemes). Children appear to learn acoustic-phonological mappings rapidly, without direct instruction, yet the underlying developmental mechanisms remain unclear. Across different languages, a relationship between amplitude envelope sensitivity and phonological development has been found, suggesting that children may make use of amplitude modulation (AM) patterns within the envelope to develop a phonological system. Here we present the Spectral Amplitude Modulation Phase Hierarchy (S-AMPH) model, a set of algorithms for deriving the dominant AM patterns in child-directed speech (CDS). Using Principal Components Analysis, we show that rhythmic CDS contains an AM hierarchy comprising 3 core modulation timescales. These timescales correspond to key phonological units: prosodic stress (Stress AM, ~2 Hz), syllables (Syllable AM, ~5 Hz) and onset-rime units (Phoneme AM, ~20 Hz). We argue that these AM patterns could in principle be used by naïve listeners to compute acoustic-phonological mappings without lexical knowledge. We then demonstrate that the modulation statistics within this AM hierarchy indeed parse the speech signal into a primitive hierarchically-organised phonological system comprising stress feet (proto-words), syllables and onset-rime units. We apply the S-AMPH model to two other CDS corpora, one spontaneous and one deliberately-timed. The model accurately identified 72-82% (freely-read CDS) and 90-98% (rhythmically-regular CDS) stress patterns, syllables and onset-rime units. This in-principle demonstration that primitive phonology can be extracted from speech AMs is termed Acoustic-Emergent Phonology (AEP) theory. AEP theory provides a set of methods for examining how early phonological development is shaped by the temporal modulation structure of speech across

  8. The Effects of Noise on Speech Recognition in Cochlear Implant Subjects: Predictions and Analysis Using Acoustic Models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Remus, Jeremiah J.; Collins, Leslie M.

    2005-12-01

    Cochlear implants can provide partial restoration of hearing, even with limited spectral resolution and loss of fine temporal structure, to severely deafened individuals. Studies have indicated that background noise has significant deleterious effects on the speech recognition performance of cochlear implant patients. This study investigates the effects of noise on speech recognition using acoustic models of two cochlear implant speech processors and several predictive signal-processing-based analyses. The results of a listening test for vowel and consonant recognition in noise are presented and analyzed using the rate of phonemic feature transmission for each acoustic model. Three methods for predicting patterns of consonant and vowel confusion that are based on signal processing techniques calculating a quantitative difference between speech tokens are developed and tested using the listening test results. Results of the listening test and confusion predictions are discussed in terms of comparisons between acoustic models and confusion prediction performance.

  9. RAPID ACOUSTIC PROCESSING IN THE AUDITORY BRAINSTEM IS NOT RELATED TO CORTICAL ASYMMETRY FOR THE SYLLABLE RATE OF SPEECH

    PubMed Central

    Abrams, Daniel A.; Nicol, Trent; Zecker, Steven; Kraus, Nina

    2010-01-01

    Objective Temporal acuity in the auditory brainstem is correlated with left-dominant patterns of cortical asymmetry for processing rapid speech-sound stimuli. Here we investigate whether a similar relationship exists between brainstem processing of rapid speech components and cortical processing of syllable patterns in speech. Methods We measured brainstem and cortical evoked potentials in response to speech tokens in 23 children. We used established measures of auditory brainstem and cortical activity to examine functional relationships between these structures. Results We found no relationship between brainstem responses to fast acoustic elements of speech and right-dominant cortical processing of syllable patterns. Conclusions Brainstem processing of rapid elements in speech is not functionally related to rightward cortical asymmetry associated with the processing of syllable-rate features in speech. Viewed together with previous evidence linking brainstem timing with leftward cortical asymmetry for faster acoustic features, findings support the existence of distinct mechanisms for encoding rapid vs. slow elements of speech. Significance Results provide a fundamental advance in our knowledge of the segregation of subcortical input associated with cortical asymmetries for acoustic rate processing in the human auditory system. Implications of these findings for auditory perception, reading ability and development are discussed. PMID:20378402

  10. Acoustic landmarks drive delta-theta oscillations to enable speech comprehension by facilitating perceptual parsing.

    PubMed

    Doelling, Keith B; Arnal, Luc H; Ghitza, Oded; Poeppel, David

    2014-01-15

    A growing body of research suggests that intrinsic neuronal slow (<10 Hz) oscillations in auditory cortex appear to track incoming speech and other spectro-temporally complex auditory signals. Within this framework, several recent studies have identified critical-band temporal envelopes as the specific acoustic feature being reflected by the phase of these oscillations. However, how this alignment between speech acoustics and neural oscillations might underpin intelligibility is unclear. Here we test the hypothesis that the 'sharpness' of temporal fluctuations in the critical band envelope acts as a temporal cue to speech syllabic rate, driving delta-theta rhythms to track the stimulus and facilitate intelligibility. We interpret our findings as evidence that sharp events in the stimulus cause cortical rhythms to re-align and parse the stimulus into syllable-sized chunks for further decoding. Using magnetoencephalographic recordings, we show that by removing temporal fluctuations that occur at the syllabic rate, envelope-tracking activity is reduced. By artificially reinstating these temporal fluctuations, envelope-tracking activity is regained. These changes in tracking correlate with intelligibility of the stimulus. Together, the results suggest that the sharpness of fluctuations in the stimulus, as reflected in the cochlear output, drive oscillatory activity to track and entrain to the stimulus, at its syllabic rate. This process likely facilitates parsing of the stimulus into meaningful chunks appropriate for subsequent decoding, enhancing perception and intelligibility.

  11. Acoustic landmarks drive delta-theta oscillations to enable speech comprehension by facilitating perceptual parsing

    PubMed Central

    Doelling, Keith; Arnal, Luc; Ghitza, Oded; Poeppel, David

    2013-01-01

    A growing body of research suggests that intrinsic neuronal slow (< 10 Hz) oscillations in auditory cortex appear to track incoming speech and other spectro-temporally complex auditory signals. Within this framework, several recent studies have identified critical-band temporal envelopes as the specific acoustic feature being reflected by the phase of these oscillations. However, how this alignment between speech acoustics and neural oscillations might underpin intelligibility is unclear. Here we test the hypothesis that the ‘sharpness’ of temporal fluctuations in the critical band envelope acts as a temporal cue to speech syllabic rate, driving delta-theta rhythms to track the stimulus and facilitate intelligibility. We interpret our findings as evidence that sharp events in the stimulus cause cortical rhythms to re-align and parse the stimulus into syllable-sized chunks for further decoding. Using magnetoencephalographic recordings, we show that by removing temporal fluctuations that occur at the syllabic rate, envelope-tracking activity is reduced. By artificially reinstating these temporal fluctuations, envelope-tracking activity is regained. These changes in tracking correlate with intelligibility of the stimulus. Together, the results suggest that the sharpness of fluctuations in the stimulus, as reflected in the cochlear output, drive oscillatory activity to track and entrain to the stimulus, at its syllabic rate. This process likely facilitates parsing of the stimulus into meaningful chunks appropriate for subsequent decoding, enhancing perception and intelligibility. PMID:23791839

  12. Control of spoken vowel acoustics and the influence of phonetic context in human speech sensorimotor cortex.

    PubMed

    Bouchard, Kristofer E; Chang, Edward F

    2014-09-17

    Speech production requires the precise control of vocal tract movements to generate individual speech sounds (phonemes) which, in turn, are rapidly organized into complex sequences. Multiple productions of the same phoneme can exhibit substantial variability, some of which is inherent to control of the vocal tract and its biomechanics, and some of which reflects the contextual effects of surrounding phonemes ("coarticulation"). The role of the CNS in these aspects of speech motor control is not well understood. To address these issues, we recorded multielectrode cortical activity directly from human ventral sensory-motor cortex (vSMC) during the production of consonant-vowel syllables. We analyzed the relationship between the acoustic parameters of vowels (pitch and formants) and cortical activity on a single-trial level. We found that vSMC activity robustly predicted acoustic parameters across vowel categories (up to 80% of variance), as well as different renditions of the same vowel (up to 25% of variance). Furthermore, we observed significant contextual effects on vSMC representations of produced phonemes that suggest active control of coarticulation: vSMC representations for vowels were biased toward the representations of the preceding consonant, and conversely, representations for consonants were biased toward upcoming vowels. These results reveal that vSMC activity for phonemes are not invariant and provide insight into the cortical mechanisms of coarticulation.

  13. Control of Spoken Vowel Acoustics and the Influence of Phonetic Context in Human Speech Sensorimotor Cortex

    PubMed Central

    Bouchard, Kristofer E.

    2014-01-01

    Speech production requires the precise control of vocal tract movements to generate individual speech sounds (phonemes) which, in turn, are rapidly organized into complex sequences. Multiple productions of the same phoneme can exhibit substantial variability, some of which is inherent to control of the vocal tract and its biomechanics, and some of which reflects the contextual effects of surrounding phonemes (“coarticulation”). The role of the CNS in these aspects of speech motor control is not well understood. To address these issues, we recorded multielectrode cortical activity directly from human ventral sensory-motor cortex (vSMC) during the production of consonant-vowel syllables. We analyzed the relationship between the acoustic parameters of vowels (pitch and formants) and cortical activity on a single-trial level. We found that vSMC activity robustly predicted acoustic parameters across vowel categories (up to 80% of variance), as well as different renditions of the same vowel (up to 25% of variance). Furthermore, we observed significant contextual effects on vSMC representations of produced phonemes that suggest active control of coarticulation: vSMC representations for vowels were biased toward the representations of the preceding consonant, and conversely, representations for consonants were biased toward upcoming vowels. These results reveal that vSMC activity for phonemes are not invariant and provide insight into the cortical mechanisms of coarticulation. PMID:25232105

  14. How private is your consultation? Acoustic and audiological measures of speech privacy in the otolaryngology clinic.

    PubMed

    Clamp, Philip J; Grant, David G; Zapala, David A; Hawkins, David B

    2011-01-01

    The right to confidentiality is a central tenet of the doctor-patient relationship. In the United Kingdom this right to confidentiality is recognised in published GMC guidance. In USA the Healthcare Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) strengthened the legal requirement to protect patient information in all forms and failure to do so now constitutes a federal offence. The aims of this study are to assess the acoustic privacy of an otolaryngology outpatient consultation room. Acoustic privacy was measured using the articulation index (AI) and Bamford-Kowal-Bench (BKB) speech discrimination tests. BKB speech tests were calibrated to normal conversational volume (50 dB SPL). Both AI and BKB were calculated in four positions around the ENT clinic: within the consultation room, outside the consulting room door, in the nearest waiting area chair and in the farthest waiting area chair. Tests were undertaken with the clinic room door closed and open to assess the effect on privacy. With the clinic room door closed, mean BKB scores in nearest and farthest waiting area chairs were 51 and 41% respectively. AI scores in the waiting area chairs were 0.03 and 0.02. With the clinic room door open, privacy was lost in both AI and BKB testing, with almost 100% of word discernable at normal talking levels. The results of this study highlight the poor level of speech privacy within a standard ENT outpatient department. AI is a poor predictor or privacy.

  15. Effect of several acoustic cues on perceiving Mandarin retroflex affricates and fricatives in continuous speech.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Jian; Chen, Yaping

    2016-07-01

    Relatively little attention has been paid to the perception of the three-way contrast between unaspirated affricates, aspirated affricates and fricatives in Mandarin Chinese. This study reports two experiments that explore the acoustic cues relevant to the contrast between the Mandarin retroflex series /tʂ/, /tʂ(h)/ and /ʂ/ in continuous speech. Twenty participants performed two three-alternative forced-choice tasks, in which acoustic cues including closure, frication duration (FD), aspiration, and vocalic contexts (VCs) were systematically manipulated and presented in a carrier phrase. A subsequent classification tree analysis shows that FD distinguishes /tʂ/ from /tʂ(h)/ and /ʂ/, and that closure cues the affricate manner. Interactions between VC and individual cues are also found. The FD threshold for separating /ʂ/ and /tʂ/ is susceptible to the influence of the following vocalic segments, shifting to lower values if frication is followed by the low vowel /a/. On the other hand, while aspiration cues /tʂ(h)/ before /a/ and //, this acoustic cue is obscured by gesture continuation when /tʂ(h)/ precedes its homorganic approximant /ɻ/ in natural speech, which might cause potential confusion between /tʂ(h)/ and /ʂ/. PMID:27475170

  16. Logopenic and nonfluent variants of primary progressive aphasia are differentiated by acoustic measures of speech production.

    PubMed

    Ballard, Kirrie J; Savage, Sharon; Leyton, Cristian E; Vogel, Adam P; Hornberger, Michael; Hodges, John R

    2014-01-01

    Differentiation of logopenic (lvPPA) and nonfluent/agrammatic (nfvPPA) variants of Primary Progressive Aphasia is important yet remains challenging since it hinges on expert based evaluation of speech and language production. In this study acoustic measures of speech in conjunction with voxel-based morphometry were used to determine the success of the measures as an adjunct to diagnosis and to explore the neural basis of apraxia of speech in nfvPPA. Forty-one patients (21 lvPPA, 20 nfvPPA) were recruited from a consecutive sample with suspected frontotemporal dementia. Patients were diagnosed using the current gold-standard of expert perceptual judgment, based on presence/absence of particular speech features during speaking tasks. Seventeen healthy age-matched adults served as controls. MRI scans were available for 11 control and 37 PPA cases; 23 of the PPA cases underwent amyloid ligand PET imaging. Measures, corresponding to perceptual features of apraxia of speech, were periods of silence during reading and relative vowel duration and intensity in polysyllable word repetition. Discriminant function analyses revealed that a measure of relative vowel duration differentiated nfvPPA cases from both control and lvPPA cases (r(2) = 0.47) with 88% agreement with expert judgment of presence of apraxia of speech in nfvPPA cases. VBM analysis showed that relative vowel duration covaried with grey matter intensity in areas critical for speech motor planning and programming: precentral gyrus, supplementary motor area and inferior frontal gyrus bilaterally, only affected in the nfvPPA group. This bilateral involvement of frontal speech networks in nfvPPA potentially affects access to compensatory mechanisms involving right hemisphere homologues. Measures of silences during reading also discriminated the PPA and control groups, but did not increase predictive accuracy. Findings suggest that a measure of relative vowel duration from of a polysyllable word repetition task

  17. Logopenic and Nonfluent Variants of Primary Progressive Aphasia Are Differentiated by Acoustic Measures of Speech Production

    PubMed Central

    Ballard, Kirrie J.; Savage, Sharon; Leyton, Cristian E.; Vogel, Adam P.; Hornberger, Michael; Hodges, John R.

    2014-01-01

    Differentiation of logopenic (lvPPA) and nonfluent/agrammatic (nfvPPA) variants of Primary Progressive Aphasia is important yet remains challenging since it hinges on expert based evaluation of speech and language production. In this study acoustic measures of speech in conjunction with voxel-based morphometry were used to determine the success of the measures as an adjunct to diagnosis and to explore the neural basis of apraxia of speech in nfvPPA. Forty-one patients (21 lvPPA, 20 nfvPPA) were recruited from a consecutive sample with suspected frontotemporal dementia. Patients were diagnosed using the current gold-standard of expert perceptual judgment, based on presence/absence of particular speech features during speaking tasks. Seventeen healthy age-matched adults served as controls. MRI scans were available for 11 control and 37 PPA cases; 23 of the PPA cases underwent amyloid ligand PET imaging. Measures, corresponding to perceptual features of apraxia of speech, were periods of silence during reading and relative vowel duration and intensity in polysyllable word repetition. Discriminant function analyses revealed that a measure of relative vowel duration differentiated nfvPPA cases from both control and lvPPA cases (r2 = 0.47) with 88% agreement with expert judgment of presence of apraxia of speech in nfvPPA cases. VBM analysis showed that relative vowel duration covaried with grey matter intensity in areas critical for speech motor planning and programming: precentral gyrus, supplementary motor area and inferior frontal gyrus bilaterally, only affected in the nfvPPA group. This bilateral involvement of frontal speech networks in nfvPPA potentially affects access to compensatory mechanisms involving right hemisphere homologues. Measures of silences during reading also discriminated the PPA and control groups, but did not increase predictive accuracy. Findings suggest that a measure of relative vowel duration from of a polysyllable word repetition task

  18. The role of metrical information in apraxia of speech. Perceptual and acoustic analyses of word stress.

    PubMed

    Aichert, Ingrid; Späth, Mona; Ziegler, Wolfram

    2016-02-01

    Several factors are known to influence speech accuracy in patients with apraxia of speech (AOS), e.g., syllable structure or word length. However, the impact of word stress has largely been neglected so far. More generally, the role of prosodic information at the phonetic encoding stage of speech production often remains unconsidered in models of speech production. This study aimed to investigate the influence of word stress on error production in AOS. Two-syllabic words with stress on the first (trochees) vs. the second syllable (iambs) were compared in 14 patients with AOS, three of them exhibiting pure AOS, and in a control group of six normal speakers. The patients produced significantly more errors on iambic than on trochaic words. A most prominent metrical effect was obtained for segmental errors. Acoustic analyses of word durations revealed a disproportionate advantage of the trochaic meter in the patients relative to the healthy controls. The results indicate that German apraxic speakers are sensitive to metrical information. It is assumed that metrical patterns function as prosodic frames for articulation planning, and that the regular metrical pattern in German, the trochaic form, has a facilitating effect on word production in patients with AOS. PMID:26792367

  19. The effects of selective attention and speech acoustics on neural speech-tracking in a multi-talker scene.

    PubMed

    Rimmele, Johanna M; Zion Golumbic, Elana; Schröger, Erich; Poeppel, David

    2015-07-01

    Attending to one speaker in multi-speaker situations is challenging. One neural mechanism proposed to underlie the ability to attend to a particular speaker is phase-locking of low-frequency activity in auditory cortex to speech's temporal envelope ("speech-tracking"), which is more precise for attended speech. However, it is not known what brings about this attentional effect, and specifically if it reflects enhanced processing of the fine structure of attended speech. To investigate this question we compared attentional effects on speech-tracking of natural versus vocoded speech which preserves the temporal envelope but removes the fine structure of speech. Pairs of natural and vocoded speech stimuli were presented concurrently and participants attended to one stimulus and performed a detection task while ignoring the other stimulus. We recorded magnetoencephalography (MEG) and compared attentional effects on the speech-tracking response in auditory cortex. Speech-tracking of natural, but not vocoded, speech was enhanced by attention, whereas neural tracking of ignored speech was similar for natural and vocoded speech. These findings suggest that the more precise speech-tracking of attended natural speech is related to processing its fine structure, possibly reflecting the application of higher-order linguistic processes. In contrast, when speech is unattended its fine structure is not processed to the same degree and thus elicits less precise speech-tracking more similar to vocoded speech.

  20. Advantages from bilateral hearing in speech perception in noise with simulated cochlear implants and residual acoustic hearing.

    PubMed

    Schoof, Tim; Green, Tim; Faulkner, Andrew; Rosen, Stuart

    2013-02-01

    Acoustic simulations were used to study the contributions of spatial hearing that may arise from combining a cochlear implant with either a second implant or contralateral residual low-frequency acoustic hearing. Speech reception thresholds (SRTs) were measured in twenty-talker babble. Spatial separation of speech and noise was simulated using a spherical head model. While low-frequency acoustic information contralateral to the implant simulation produced substantially better SRTs there was no effect of spatial cues on SRT, even when interaural differences were artificially enhanced. Simulated bilateral implants showed a significant head shadow effect, but no binaural unmasking based on interaural time differences, and weak, inconsistent overall spatial release from masking. There was also a small but significant non-spatial summation effect. It appears that typical cochlear implant speech processing strategies may substantially reduce the utility of spatial cues, even in the absence of degraded neural processing arising from auditory deprivation. PMID:23363118

  1. The effects of selective attention and speech acoustics on neural speech-tracking in a multi-talker scene

    PubMed Central

    Rimmele, Johanna M.; Golumbic, Elana Zion; Schröger, Erich; Poeppel, David

    2015-01-01

    Attending to one speaker in multi-speaker situations is challenging. One neural mechanism proposed to underlie the ability to attend to a particular speaker is phase-locking of low-frequency activity in auditory cortex to speech’s temporal envelope (“speech-tracking”), which is more precise for attended speech. However, it is not known what brings about this attentional effect, and specifically if it reflects enhanced processing of the fine structure of attended speech. To investigate this question we compared attentional effects on speech-tracking of natural vs. vocoded speech which preserves the temporal envelope but removes the fine-structure of speech. Pairs of natural and vocoded speech stimuli were presented concurrently and participants attended to one stimulus and performed a detection task while ignoring the other stimulus. We recorded magnetoencephalography (MEG) and compared attentional effects on the speech-tracking response in auditory cortex. Speech-tracking of natural, but not vocoded, speech was enhanced by attention, whereas neural tracking of ignored speech was similar for natural and vocoded speech. These findings suggest that the more precise speech tracking of attended natural speech is related to processing its fine structure, possibly reflecting the application of higher-order linguistic processes. In contrast, when speech is unattended its fine structure is not processed to the same degree and thus elicits less precise speech tracking more similar to vocoded speech. PMID:25650107

  2. Acoustic Feature Optimization Based on F-Ratio for Robust Speech Recognition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sun, Yanqing; Zhou, Yu; Zhao, Qingwei; Yan, Yonghong

    This paper focuses on the problem of performance degradation in mismatched speech recognition. The F-Ratio analysis method is utilized to analyze the significance of different frequency bands for speech unit classification, and we find that frequencies around 1kHz and 3kHz, which are the upper bounds of the first and the second formants for most of the vowels, should be emphasized in comparison to the Mel-frequency cepstral coefficients (MFCC). The analysis result is further observed to be stable in several typical mismatched situations. Similar to the Mel-Frequency scale, another frequency scale called the F-Ratio-scale is thus proposed to optimize the filter bank design for the MFCC features, and make each subband contains equal significance for speech unit classification. Under comparable conditions, with the modified features we get a relative 43.20% decrease compared with the MFCC in sentence error rate for the emotion affected speech recognition, 35.54%, 23.03% for the noisy speech recognition at 15dB and 0dB SNR (signal to noise ratio) respectively, and 64.50% for the three years' 863 test data. The application of the F-Ratio analysis on the clean training set of the Aurora2 database demonstrates its robustness over languages, texts and sampling rates.

  3. Depression Diagnoses and Fundamental Frequency-Based Acoustic Cues in Maternal Infant-Directed Speech

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Porritt, Laura L.; Zinser, Michael C.; Bachorowski, Jo-Anne; Kaplan, Peter S.

    2014-01-01

    F[subscript 0]-based acoustic measures were extracted from a brief, sentence-final target word spoken during structured play interactions between mothers and their 3- to 14-month-old infants and were analyzed based on demographic variables and DSM-IV Axis-I clinical diagnoses and their common modifiers. F[subscript 0] range (?F[subscript 0]) was…

  4. Improved perception of speech in noise and Mandarin tones with acoustic simulations of harmonic coding for cochlear implants.

    PubMed

    Li, Xing; Nie, Kaibao; Imennov, Nikita S; Won, Jong Ho; Drennan, Ward R; Rubinstein, Jay T; Atlas, Les E

    2012-11-01

    Harmonic and temporal fine structure (TFS) information are important cues for speech perception in noise and music perception. However, due to the inherently coarse spectral and temporal resolution in electric hearing, the question of how to deliver harmonic and TFS information to cochlear implant (CI) users remains unresolved. A harmonic-single-sideband-encoder [(HSSE); Nie et al. (2008). Proceedings of IEEE International Conference on Acoustics, Speech, and Signal Processing; Lie et al., (2010). Proceedings of IEEE International Conference on Acoustics, Speech, and Signal Processing] strategy has been proposed that explicitly tracks the harmonics in speech and transforms them into modulators conveying both amplitude modulation and fundamental frequency information. For unvoiced speech, HSSE transforms the TFS into a slowly varying yet still noise-like signal. To investigate its potential, four- and eight-channel vocoder simulations of HSSE and the continuous-interleaved-sampling (CIS) strategy were implemented, respectively. Using these vocoders, five normal-hearing subjects' speech recognition performance was evaluated under different masking conditions; another five normal-hearing subjects' Mandarin tone identification performance was also evaluated. Additionally, the neural discharge patterns evoked by HSSE- and CIS-encoded Mandarin tone stimuli were simulated using an auditory nerve model. All subjects scored significantly higher with HSSE than with CIS vocoders. The modeling analysis demonstrated that HSSE can convey temporal pitch cues better than CIS. Overall, the results suggest that HSSE is a promising strategy to enhance speech perception with CIs. PMID:23145619

  5. Analysis of Acoustic Features in Speakers with Cognitive Disorders and Speech Impairments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saz, Oscar; Simón, Javier; Rodríguez, W. Ricardo; Lleida, Eduardo; Vaquero, Carlos

    2009-12-01

    This work presents the results in the analysis of the acoustic features (formants and the three suprasegmental features: tone, intensity and duration) of the vowel production in a group of 14 young speakers suffering different kinds of speech impairments due to physical and cognitive disorders. A corpus with unimpaired children's speech is used to determine the reference values for these features in speakers without any kind of speech impairment within the same domain of the impaired speakers; this is 57 isolated words. The signal processing to extract the formant and pitch values is based on a Linear Prediction Coefficients (LPCs) analysis of the segments considered as vowels in a Hidden Markov Model (HMM) based Viterbi forced alignment. Intensity and duration are also based in the outcome of the automated segmentation. As main conclusion of the work, it is shown that intelligibility of the vowel production is lowered in impaired speakers even when the vowel is perceived as correct by human labelers. The decrease in intelligibility is due to a 30% of increase in confusability in the formants map, a reduction of 50% in the discriminative power in energy between stressed and unstressed vowels and to a 50% increase of the standard deviation in the length of the vowels. On the other hand, impaired speakers keep good control of tone in the production of stressed and unstressed vowels.

  6. Speech intelligibility in rooms: Effect of prior listening exposure interacts with room acoustics.

    PubMed

    Zahorik, Pavel; Brandewie, Eugene J

    2016-07-01

    There is now converging evidence that a brief period of prior listening exposure to a reverberant room can influence speech understanding in that environment. Although the effect appears to depend critically on the amplitude modulation characteristic of the speech signal reaching the ear, the extent to which the effect may be influenced by room acoustics has not been thoroughly evaluated. This study seeks to fill this gap in knowledge by testing the effect of prior listening exposure or listening context on speech understanding in five different simulated sound fields, ranging from anechoic space to a room with broadband reverberation time (T60) of approximately 3 s. Although substantial individual variability in the effect was observed and quantified, the context effect was, on average, strongly room dependent. At threshold, the effect was minimal in anechoic space, increased to a maximum of 3 dB on average in moderate reverberation (T60 = 1 s), and returned to minimal levels again in high reverberation. This interaction suggests that the functional effects of prior listening exposure may be limited to sound fields with moderate reverberation (0.4 ≤ T60 ≤ 1 s). PMID:27475133

  7. Discrimination of Speech Stimuli Based on Neuronal Response Phase Patterns Depends on Acoustics But Not Comprehension

    PubMed Central

    Poeppel, David

    2010-01-01

    Speech stimuli give rise to neural activity in the listener that can be observed as waveforms using magnetoencephalography. Although waveforms vary greatly from trial to trial due to activity unrelated to the stimulus, it has been demonstrated that spoken sentences can be discriminated based on theta-band (3–7 Hz) phase patterns in single-trial response waveforms. Furthermore, manipulations of the speech signal envelope and fine structure that reduced intelligibility were found to produce correlated reductions in discrimination performance, suggesting a relationship between theta-band phase patterns and speech comprehension. This study investigates the nature of this relationship, hypothesizing that theta-band phase patterns primarily reflect cortical processing of low-frequency (<40 Hz) modulations present in the acoustic signal and required for intelligibility, rather than processing exclusively related to comprehension (e.g., lexical, syntactic, semantic). Using stimuli that are quite similar to normal spoken sentences in terms of low-frequency modulation characteristics but are unintelligible (i.e., their time-inverted counterparts), we find that discrimination performance based on theta-band phase patterns is equal for both types of stimuli. Consistent with earlier findings, we also observe that whereas theta-band phase patterns differ across stimuli, power patterns do not. We use a simulation model of the single-trial response to spoken sentence stimuli to demonstrate that phase-locked responses to low-frequency modulations of the acoustic signal can account not only for the phase but also for the power results. The simulation offers insight into the interpretation of the empirical results with respect to phase-resetting and power-enhancement models of the evoked response. PMID:20484530

  8. An acoustical assessment of pitch-matching accuracy in relation to speech frequency, speech frequency range, age and gender in preschool children

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trollinger, Valerie L.

    This study investigated the relationship between acoustical measurement of singing accuracy in relationship to speech fundamental frequency, speech fundamental frequency range, age and gender in preschool-aged children. Seventy subjects from Southeastern Pennsylvania; the San Francisco Bay Area, California; and Terre Haute, Indiana, participated in the study. Speech frequency was measured by having the subjects participate in spontaneous and guided speech activities with the researcher, with 18 diverse samples extracted from each subject's recording for acoustical analysis for fundamental frequency in Hz with the CSpeech computer program. The fundamental frequencies were averaged together to derive a mean speech frequency score for each subject. Speech range was calculated by subtracting the lowest fundamental frequency produced from the highest fundamental frequency produced, resulting in a speech range measured in increments of Hz. Singing accuracy was measured by having the subjects each echo-sing six randomized patterns using the pitches Middle C, D, E, F♯, G and A (440), using the solfege syllables of Do and Re, which were recorded by a 5-year-old female model. For each subject, 18 samples of singing were recorded. All samples were analyzed by the CSpeech for fundamental frequency. For each subject, deviation scores in Hz were derived by calculating the difference between what the model sang in Hz and what the subject sang in response in Hz. Individual scores for each child consisted of an overall mean total deviation frequency, mean frequency deviations for each pattern, and mean frequency deviation for each pitch. Pearson correlations, MANOVA and ANOVA analyses, Multiple Regressions and Discriminant Analysis revealed the following findings: (1) moderate but significant (p < .001) relationships emerged between mean speech frequency and the ability to sing the pitches E, F♯, G and A in the study; (2) mean speech frequency also emerged as the strongest

  9. Acoustic diagnosis of pulmonary hypertension: automated speech- recognition-inspired classification algorithm outperforms physicians.

    PubMed

    Kaddoura, Tarek; Vadlamudi, Karunakar; Kumar, Shine; Bobhate, Prashant; Guo, Long; Jain, Shreepal; Elgendi, Mohamed; Coe, James Y; Kim, Daniel; Taylor, Dylan; Tymchak, Wayne; Schuurmans, Dale; Zemp, Roger J; Adatia, Ian

    2016-01-01

    We hypothesized that an automated speech- recognition-inspired classification algorithm could differentiate between the heart sounds in subjects with and without pulmonary hypertension (PH) and outperform physicians. Heart sounds, electrocardiograms, and mean pulmonary artery pressures (mPAp) were recorded simultaneously. Heart sound recordings were digitized to train and test speech-recognition-inspired classification algorithms. We used mel-frequency cepstral coefficients to extract features from the heart sounds. Gaussian-mixture models classified the features as PH (mPAp ≥ 25 mmHg) or normal (mPAp < 25 mmHg). Physicians blinded to patient data listened to the same heart sound recordings and attempted a diagnosis. We studied 164 subjects: 86 with mPAp ≥ 25 mmHg (mPAp 41 ± 12 mmHg) and 78 with mPAp < 25 mmHg (mPAp 17 ± 5 mmHg) (p  < 0.005). The correct diagnostic rate of the automated speech-recognition-inspired algorithm was 74% compared to 56% by physicians (p = 0.005). The false positive rate for the algorithm was 34% versus 50% (p = 0.04) for clinicians. The false negative rate for the algorithm was 23% and 68% (p = 0.0002) for physicians. We developed an automated speech-recognition-inspired classification algorithm for the acoustic diagnosis of PH that outperforms physicians that could be used to screen for PH and encourage earlier specialist referral. PMID:27609672

  10. Acoustic diagnosis of pulmonary hypertension: automated speech- recognition-inspired classification algorithm outperforms physicians

    PubMed Central

    Kaddoura, Tarek; Vadlamudi, Karunakar; Kumar, Shine; Bobhate, Prashant; Guo, Long; Jain, Shreepal; Elgendi, Mohamed; Coe, James Y; Kim, Daniel; Taylor, Dylan; Tymchak, Wayne; Schuurmans, Dale; Zemp, Roger J.; Adatia, Ian

    2016-01-01

    We hypothesized that an automated speech- recognition-inspired classification algorithm could differentiate between the heart sounds in subjects with and without pulmonary hypertension (PH) and outperform physicians. Heart sounds, electrocardiograms, and mean pulmonary artery pressures (mPAp) were recorded simultaneously. Heart sound recordings were digitized to train and test speech-recognition-inspired classification algorithms. We used mel-frequency cepstral coefficients to extract features from the heart sounds. Gaussian-mixture models classified the features as PH (mPAp ≥ 25 mmHg) or normal (mPAp < 25 mmHg). Physicians blinded to patient data listened to the same heart sound recordings and attempted a diagnosis. We studied 164 subjects: 86 with mPAp ≥ 25 mmHg (mPAp 41 ± 12 mmHg) and 78 with mPAp < 25 mmHg (mPAp 17 ± 5 mmHg) (p  < 0.005). The correct diagnostic rate of the automated speech-recognition-inspired algorithm was 74% compared to 56% by physicians (p = 0.005). The false positive rate for the algorithm was 34% versus 50% (p = 0.04) for clinicians. The false negative rate for the algorithm was 23% and 68% (p = 0.0002) for physicians. We developed an automated speech-recognition-inspired classification algorithm for the acoustic diagnosis of PH that outperforms physicians that could be used to screen for PH and encourage earlier specialist referral. PMID:27609672

  11. Acoustic diagnosis of pulmonary hypertension: automated speech- recognition-inspired classification algorithm outperforms physicians

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaddoura, Tarek; Vadlamudi, Karunakar; Kumar, Shine; Bobhate, Prashant; Guo, Long; Jain, Shreepal; Elgendi, Mohamed; Coe, James Y.; Kim, Daniel; Taylor, Dylan; Tymchak, Wayne; Schuurmans, Dale; Zemp, Roger J.; Adatia, Ian

    2016-09-01

    We hypothesized that an automated speech- recognition-inspired classification algorithm could differentiate between the heart sounds in subjects with and without pulmonary hypertension (PH) and outperform physicians. Heart sounds, electrocardiograms, and mean pulmonary artery pressures (mPAp) were recorded simultaneously. Heart sound recordings were digitized to train and test speech-recognition-inspired classification algorithms. We used mel-frequency cepstral coefficients to extract features from the heart sounds. Gaussian-mixture models classified the features as PH (mPAp ≥ 25 mmHg) or normal (mPAp < 25 mmHg). Physicians blinded to patient data listened to the same heart sound recordings and attempted a diagnosis. We studied 164 subjects: 86 with mPAp ≥ 25 mmHg (mPAp 41 ± 12 mmHg) and 78 with mPAp < 25 mmHg (mPAp 17 ± 5 mmHg) (p  < 0.005). The correct diagnostic rate of the automated speech-recognition-inspired algorithm was 74% compared to 56% by physicians (p = 0.005). The false positive rate for the algorithm was 34% versus 50% (p = 0.04) for clinicians. The false negative rate for the algorithm was 23% and 68% (p = 0.0002) for physicians. We developed an automated speech-recognition-inspired classification algorithm for the acoustic diagnosis of PH that outperforms physicians that could be used to screen for PH and encourage earlier specialist referral.

  12. Transient Auditory Storage of Acoustic Details Is Associated with Release of Speech from Informational Masking in Reverberant Conditions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Huang, Ying; Huang, Qiang; Chen, Xun; Wu, Xihong; Li, Liang

    2009-01-01

    Perceptual integration of the sound directly emanating from the source with reflections needs both temporal storage and correlation computation of acoustic details. We examined whether the temporal storage is frequency dependent and associated with speech unmasking. In Experiment 1, a break in correlation (BIC) between interaurally correlated…

  13. Discrimination and Comprehension of Synthetic Speech by Students with Visual Impairments: The Case of Similar Acoustic Patterns

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Papadopoulos, Konstantinos; Argyropoulos, Vassilios S.; Kouroupetroglou, Georgios

    2008-01-01

    This study examined the perceptions held by sighted students and students with visual impairments of the intelligibility and comprehensibility of similar acoustic patterns produced by synthetic speech. It determined the types of errors the students made and compared the performance of the two groups on auditory discrimination and comprehension.

  14. Comparing the effects of reverberation and of noise on speech recognition in simulated electric-acoustic listening

    PubMed Central

    Helms Tillery, Kate; Brown, Christopher A.; Bacon, Sid P.

    2012-01-01

    Cochlear implant users report difficulty understanding speech in both noisy and reverberant environments. Electric-acoustic stimulation (EAS) is known to improve speech intelligibility in noise. However, little is known about the potential benefits of EAS in reverberation, or about how such benefits relate to those observed in noise. The present study used EAS simulations to examine these questions. Sentences were convolved with impulse responses from a model of a room whose estimated reverberation times were varied from 0 to 1 sec. These reverberated stimuli were then vocoded to simulate electric stimulation, or presented as a combination of vocoder plus low-pass filtered speech to simulate EAS. Monaural sentence recognition scores were measured in two conditions: reverberated speech and speech in a reverberated noise. The long-term spectrum and amplitude modulations of the noise were equated to the reverberant energy, allowing a comparison of the effects of the interferer (speech vs noise). Results indicate that, at least in simulation, (1) EAS provides significant benefit in reverberation; (2) the benefits of EAS in reverberation may be underestimated by those in a comparable noise; and (3) the EAS benefit in reverberation likely arises from partially preserved cues in this background accessible via the low-frequency acoustic component. PMID:22280603

  15. Pointing and naming are not redundant: children use gesture to modify nouns before they modify nouns in speech.

    PubMed

    Cartmill, Erica A; Hunsicker, Dea; Goldin-Meadow, Susan

    2014-06-01

    Nouns form the first building blocks of children's language but are not consistently modified by other words until around 2.5 years of age. Before then, children often combine their nouns with gestures that indicate the object labeled by the noun, for example, pointing at a bottle while saying "bottle." These gestures are typically assumed to be redundant with speech. Here we present data challenging this assumption, suggesting that these early pointing gestures serve a determiner-like function (i.e., point at bottle + "bottle" = that bottle). Using longitudinal data from 18 children (8 girls), we analyzed all utterances containing nouns and focused on (a) utterances containing an unmodified noun combined with a pointing gesture and (b) utterances containing a noun modified by a determiner. We found that the age at which children first produced point + noun combinations predicted the onset age for determiner + noun combinations. Moreover, point + noun combinations decreased following the onset of determiner + noun constructions. Importantly, combinations of pointing gestures with other types of speech (e.g., point at bottle + "gimme" = gimme that) did not relate to the onset or offset of determiner + noun constructions. Point + noun combinations thus appear to selectively predict the development of a new construction in speech. When children point to an object and simultaneously label it, they are beginning to develop their understanding of nouns as a modifiable unit of speech. PMID:24588517

  16. Pointing and naming are not redundant: Children use gesture to modify nouns before they modify nouns in speech

    PubMed Central

    Cartmill, Erica A.; Hunsicker, Dea; Goldin-Meadow, Susan

    2014-01-01

    Nouns form the first building blocks of children’s language, but are not consistently modified by other words until around 2 ½ years of age. Before then, children often combine their nouns with gestures that indicate the object labeled by the noun, for example, pointing at a bottle while saying “bottle.” These gestures are typically assumed to be redundant with speech. Here we present data challenging this assumption, suggesting that these early pointing gestures serve a determiner-like function (i.e., point at bottle + “bottle” = that bottle). Using longitudinal data from 18 children (8 girls), we analyzed all utterances containing nouns and focused on (1) utterances containing an unmodified noun combined with a pointing gesture, and (2) utterances containing a noun modified by a determiner. We found that the age at which children first produced point+noun combinations predicted the onset age for determiner+noun combinations. Moreover, point+noun combinations decreased following the onset of determiner+noun constructions. Importantly, combinations of pointing gestures with other types of speech (e.g., point at bottle + “gimme” = gimme that) did not relate to the onset or offset of determiner+noun constructions. Point+noun combinations thus appear to selectively predict the development of a new construction in speech. When children point to an object and simultaneously label it, they are beginning to develop their understanding of nouns as a modifiable unit of speech. PMID:24588517

  17. Recognition of emotions in Mexican Spanish speech: an approach based on acoustic modelling of emotion-specific vowels.

    PubMed

    Caballero-Morales, Santiago-Omar

    2013-01-01

    An approach for the recognition of emotions in speech is presented. The target language is Mexican Spanish, and for this purpose a speech database was created. The approach consists in the phoneme acoustic modelling of emotion-specific vowels. For this, a standard phoneme-based Automatic Speech Recognition (ASR) system was built with Hidden Markov Models (HMMs), where different phoneme HMMs were built for the consonants and emotion-specific vowels associated with four emotional states (anger, happiness, neutral, sadness). Then, estimation of the emotional state from a spoken sentence is performed by counting the number of emotion-specific vowels found in the ASR's output for the sentence. With this approach, accuracy of 87-100% was achieved for the recognition of emotional state of Mexican Spanish speech.

  18. Recognition of Emotions in Mexican Spanish Speech: An Approach Based on Acoustic Modelling of Emotion-Specific Vowels

    PubMed Central

    Caballero-Morales, Santiago-Omar

    2013-01-01

    An approach for the recognition of emotions in speech is presented. The target language is Mexican Spanish, and for this purpose a speech database was created. The approach consists in the phoneme acoustic modelling of emotion-specific vowels. For this, a standard phoneme-based Automatic Speech Recognition (ASR) system was built with Hidden Markov Models (HMMs), where different phoneme HMMs were built for the consonants and emotion-specific vowels associated with four emotional states (anger, happiness, neutral, sadness). Then, estimation of the emotional state from a spoken sentence is performed by counting the number of emotion-specific vowels found in the ASR's output for the sentence. With this approach, accuracy of 87–100% was achieved for the recognition of emotional state of Mexican Spanish speech. PMID:23935410

  19. Acoustic markers of prominence influence infants' and adults' segmentation of speech sequences.

    PubMed

    Bion, Ricardo A H; Benavides-Varela, Silvia; Nespor, Marina

    2011-03-01

    Two experiments investigated the way acoustic markers of prominence influence the grouping of speech sequences by adults and 7-month-old infants. In the first experiment, adults were familiarized with and asked to memorize sequences of adjacent syllables that alternated in either pitch or duration. During the test phase, participants heard pairs of syllables with constant pitch and duration and were asked whether the syllables had appeared adjacently during familiarization. Adults were better at remembering pairs of syllables that during familiarization had short syllables preceding long syllables, or high-pitched syllables preceding low-pitched syllables. In the second experiment, infants were familiarized and tested with similar stimuli as in the first experiment, and their preference for pairs of syllables was accessed using the head-turn preference paradigm.When familiarized with syllables alternating in pitch, infants showed a preference to listen to pairs of syllables that had high pitch in the first syllable. However, no preference was found when the familiarization stream alternated in duration. It is proposed that these perceptual biases help infants and adults find linguistic units in the continuous speech stream.While the bias for grouping based on pitch appears early in development, biases for durational grouping might rely on more extensive linguistic experience. PMID:21524015

  20. Statistical evidence that musical universals derive from the acoustic characteristics of human speech

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schwartz, David; Howe, Catharine; Purves, Dale

    2003-04-01

    Listeners of all ages and societies produce a similar consonance ordering of chromatic scale tone combinations. Despite intense interest in this perceptual phenomenon over several millennia, it has no generally accepted explanation in physical, psychological, or physiological terms. Here we show that the musical universal of consonance ordering can be understood in terms of the statistical relationship between a pattern of sound pressure at the ear and the possible generative sources of the acoustic energy pattern. Since human speech is the principal naturally occurring source of tone-evoking (i.e., periodic) sound energy for human listeners, we obtained normalized spectra from more than 100000 recorded speech segments. The probability distribution of amplitude/frequency combinations derived from these spectra predicts both the fundamental frequency ratios that define the chromatic scale intervals and the consonance ordering of chromatic scale tone combinations. We suggest that these observations reveal the statistical character of the perceptual process by which the auditory system guides biologically successful behavior in response to inherently ambiguous sound stimuli.

  1. A machine for neural computation of acoustical patterns with application to real time speech recognition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mueller, P.; Lazzaro, J.

    1986-08-01

    400 analog electronic neurons have been assembled and connected for the analysis and recognition of acoustical patterns, including speech. Input to the net comes from a set of 18 band pass filters (Qmax 300 dB/octave; 180 to 6000 Hz, log scale). The net is organized into two parts, the first performs in real time the decomposition of the input patterns into their primitives of energy, space (frequency) and time relations. The other part decodes the set of primitives. 216 neurons are dedicated to pattern decomposition. The output of the individual filters is rectified and fed to two sets of 18 neurons in an opponent center-surround organization of synaptic connections (``on center'' and (``off center''). These units compute maxima and minima of energy at different frequencies. The next two sets of neutrons compute the temporal boundaries (``on'') and ``off'') and the following two the movement of the energy maxima (formants) up or down the frequency axis. There are in addition ``hyperacuity'' units which expand the frequency resolution to 36, other units tuned to a particular range of duration of the ``on center'' units and others tuned exclusively to very low energy sounds. In order to recognize speech sounds at the phoneme or diphone level, the set of primitives belonging to the phoneme is decoded such that only one neuron or a non-overlapping group of neurons fire when the sound pattern is present at the input. For display and translation into phonetic symbols the output from these neurons is fed into an EPROM decoder and computer which displays in real time a phonetic representation of the speech input.

  2. Assessing the Treatment Effects in Apraxia of Speech: Introduction and Evaluation of the Modified Diadochokinesis Test

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hurkmans, Joost; Jonkers, Roel; Boonstra, Anne M.; Stewart, Roy E.; Reinders-Messelink, Heleen A.

    2012-01-01

    Background: The number of reliable and valid instruments to measure the effects of therapy in apraxia of speech (AoS) is limited. Aims: To evaluate the newly developed Modified Diadochokinesis Test (MDT), which is a task to assess the effects of rate and rhythm therapies for AoS in a multiple baseline across behaviours design. Methods: The…

  3. The effect of different open plan and enclosed classroom acoustic conditions on speech perception in Kindergarten children.

    PubMed

    Mealings, Kiri T; Demuth, Katherine; Buchholz, Jörg M; Dillon, Harvey

    2015-10-01

    Open plan classrooms, where several classes are in the same room, have recently re-emerged in Australian primary schools. This paper explores how the acoustics of four Kindergarten classrooms [an enclosed classroom (25 children), double classroom (44 children), fully open plan triple classroom (91 children), and a semi-open plan K-6 "21st century learning space" (205 children)] affect speech perception. Twenty-two to 23 5-6-year-old children in each classroom participated in an online four-picture choice speech perception test while adjacent classes engaged in quiet versus noisy activities. The noise levels recorded during the test were higher the larger the classroom, except in the noisy condition for the K-6 classroom, possibly due to acoustic treatments. Linear mixed effects models revealed children's performance accuracy and speed decreased as noise level increased. Additionally, children's speech perception abilities decreased the further away they were seated from the loudspeaker in noise levels above 50 dBA. These results suggest that fully open plan classrooms are not appropriate learning environments for critical listening activities with young children due to their high intrusive noise levels which negatively affect speech perception. If open plan classrooms are desired, they need to be acoustically designed to be appropriate for critical listening activities.

  4. Speaker height estimation from speech: Fusing spectral regression and statistical acoustic models.

    PubMed

    Hansen, John H L; Williams, Keri; Bořil, Hynek

    2015-08-01

    Estimating speaker height can assist in voice forensic analysis and provide additional side knowledge to benefit automatic speaker identification or acoustic model selection for automatic speech recognition. In this study, a statistical approach to height estimation that incorporates acoustic models within a non-uniform height bin width Gaussian mixture model structure as well as a formant analysis approach that employs linear regression on selected phones are presented. The accuracy and trade-offs of these systems are explored by examining the consistency of the results, location, and causes of error as well a combined fusion of the two systems using data from the TIMIT corpus. Open set testing is also presented using the Multi-session Audio Research Project corpus and publicly available YouTube audio to examine the effect of channel mismatch between training and testing data and provide a realistic open domain testing scenario. The proposed algorithms achieve a highly competitive performance to previously published literature. Although the different data partitioning in the literature and this study may prevent performance comparisons in absolute terms, the mean average error of 4.89 cm for males and 4.55 cm for females provided by the proposed algorithm on TIMIT utterances containing selected phones suggest a considerable estimation error decrease compared to past efforts.

  5. Speech timing and linguistic rhythm: on the acoustic bases of rhythm typologies.

    PubMed

    Rathcke, Tamara V; Smith, Rachel H

    2015-05-01

    Research into linguistic rhythm has been dominated by the idea that languages can be classified according to rhythmic templates, amenable to assessment by acoustic measures of vowel and consonant durations. This study tested predictions of two proposals explaining the bases of rhythmic typologies: the Rhythm Class Hypothesis which assumes that the templates arise from an extensive vs a limited use of durational contrasts, and the Control and Compensation Hypothesis which proposes that the templates are rooted in more vs less flexible speech production strategies. Temporal properties of segments, syllables and rhythmic feet were examined in two accents of British English, a "stress-timed" variety from Leeds, and a "syllable-timed" variety spoken by Panjabi-English bilinguals from Bradford. Rhythm metrics were calculated. A perception study confirmed that the speakers of the two varieties differed in their perceived rhythm. The results revealed that both typologies were informative in that to a certain degree, they predicted temporal patterns of the two varieties. None of the metrics tested was capable of adequately reflecting the temporal complexity found in the durational data. These findings contribute to the critical evaluation of the explanatory adequacy of rhythm metrics. Acoustic bases and limitations of the traditional rhythmic typologies are discussed.

  6. Speaker height estimation from speech: Fusing spectral regression and statistical acoustic models.

    PubMed

    Hansen, John H L; Williams, Keri; Bořil, Hynek

    2015-08-01

    Estimating speaker height can assist in voice forensic analysis and provide additional side knowledge to benefit automatic speaker identification or acoustic model selection for automatic speech recognition. In this study, a statistical approach to height estimation that incorporates acoustic models within a non-uniform height bin width Gaussian mixture model structure as well as a formant analysis approach that employs linear regression on selected phones are presented. The accuracy and trade-offs of these systems are explored by examining the consistency of the results, location, and causes of error as well a combined fusion of the two systems using data from the TIMIT corpus. Open set testing is also presented using the Multi-session Audio Research Project corpus and publicly available YouTube audio to examine the effect of channel mismatch between training and testing data and provide a realistic open domain testing scenario. The proposed algorithms achieve a highly competitive performance to previously published literature. Although the different data partitioning in the literature and this study may prevent performance comparisons in absolute terms, the mean average error of 4.89 cm for males and 4.55 cm for females provided by the proposed algorithm on TIMIT utterances containing selected phones suggest a considerable estimation error decrease compared to past efforts. PMID:26328721

  7. Acoustic source characteristics, across-formant integration, and speech intelligibility under competitive conditions.

    PubMed

    Roberts, Brian; Summers, Robert J; Bailey, Peter J

    2015-06-01

    An important aspect of speech perception is the ability to group or select formants using cues in the acoustic source characteristics--for example, fundamental frequency (F0) differences between formants promote their segregation. This study explored the role of more radical differences in source characteristics. Three-formant (F1+F2+F3) synthetic speech analogues were derived from natural sentences. In Experiment 1, F1+F3 were generated by passing a harmonic glottal source (F0 = 140 Hz) through second-order resonators (H1+H3); in Experiment 2, F1+F3 were tonal (sine-wave) analogues (T1+T3). F2 could take either form (H2 or T2). In some conditions, the target formants were presented alone, either monaurally or dichotically (left ear = F1+F3; right ear = F2). In others, they were accompanied by a competitor for F2 (F1+F2C+F3; F2), which listeners must reject to optimize recognition. Competitors (H2C or T2C) were created using the time-reversed frequency and amplitude contours of F2. Dichotic presentation of F2 and F2C ensured that the impact of the competitor arose primarily through informational masking. In the absence of F2C, the effect of a source mismatch between F1+F3 and F2 was relatively modest. When F2C was present, intelligibility was lowest when F2 was tonal and F2C was harmonic, irrespective of which type matched F1+F3. This finding suggests that source type and context, rather than similarity, govern the phonetic contribution of a formant. It is proposed that wideband harmonic analogues are more effective informational maskers than narrowband tonal analogues, and so become dominant in across-frequency integration of phonetic information when placed in competition. PMID:25751040

  8. Modified ion-acoustic solitary waves in plasmas with field-aligned shear flows

    SciTech Connect

    Saleem, H.; Haque, Q.

    2015-08-15

    The nonlinear dynamics of ion-acoustic waves is investigated in a plasma having field-aligned shear flow. A Korteweg-deVries-type nonlinear equation for a modified ion-acoustic wave is obtained which admits a single pulse soliton solution. The theoretical result has been applied to solar wind plasma at 1 AU for illustration.

  9. Modified ion-acoustic solitary waves in plasmas with field-aligned shear flows

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saleem, H.; Ali, S.; Haque, Q.

    2015-08-01

    The nonlinear dynamics of ion-acoustic waves is investigated in a plasma having field-aligned shear flow. A Koeteweg-deVries-type nonlinear equation for a modified ion-acoustic wave is obtained which admits a single pulse soliton solution. The theoretical result has been applied to solar wind plasma at 1 AU for illustration.

  10. Sine-wave and noise-vocoded sine-wave speech in a tone language: Acoustic details matter.

    PubMed

    Rosen, Stuart; Hui, Sze Ngar Catherine

    2015-12-01

    Sine-wave speech (SWS) is a highly simplified version of speech consisting only of frequency- and amplitude-modulated sinusoids representing the formants. That listeners can successfully understand SWS has led to claims that speech perception must be based on abstract properties of the stimuli far removed from their specific acoustic form. Here it is shown, in bilingual Cantonese/English listeners, that performance with Cantonese SWS is improved by noise vocoding, with no effect on English SWS utterances. This manipulation preserves the abstract informational structure in the signals but changes its surface form. The differential effects of noise vocoding likely arise from the fact that Cantonese is a tonal language and hence more reliant on fundamental frequency (F0) contours for its intelligibility. SWS does not preserve tonal information from the original speech but does have false tonal information signalled by the lowest frequency sinusoid. Noise vocoding SWS appears to minimise the tonal percept, which thus interferes less in the perception of Cantonese. It has no effect in English, which is minimally reliant on F0 variations for intelligibility. Therefore it is not only the informational structure of a sound that is important but also how its acoustic detail interacts with the phonological structure of a given language.

  11. Effects of a music therapy voice protocol on speech intelligibility, vocal acoustic measures, and mood of individuals with Parkinson's disease.

    PubMed

    Haneishi, E

    2001-01-01

    This study examined the effects of a Music Therapy Voice Protocol (MTVP) on speech intelligibility, vocal intensity, maximum vocal range, maximum duration of sustained vowel phonation, vocal fundamental frequency, vocal fundamental frequency variability, and mood of individuals with Parkinson's disease. Four female patients, who demonstrated voice and speech problems, served as their own controls and participated in baseline assessment (study pretest), a series of MTVP sessions involving vocal and singing exercises, and final evaluation (study posttest). In study pre and posttests, data for speech intelligibility and all acoustic variables were collected. Statistically significant increases were found in speech intelligibility, as rated by caregivers, and in vocal intensity from study pretest to posttest as the results of paired samples t-tests. In addition, before and after each MTVP session (session pre and posttests), self-rated mood scores and selected acoustic variables were collected. No significant differences were found in any of the variables from the session pretests to posttests, across the entire treatment period, or their interactions as the results of two-way ANOVAs with repeated measures. Although not significant, the mean of mood scores in session posttests (M = 8.69) was higher than that in session pretests (M = 7.93). PMID:11796078

  12. Sine-wave and noise-vocoded sine-wave speech in a tone language: Acoustic details matter.

    PubMed

    Rosen, Stuart; Hui, Sze Ngar Catherine

    2015-12-01

    Sine-wave speech (SWS) is a highly simplified version of speech consisting only of frequency- and amplitude-modulated sinusoids representing the formants. That listeners can successfully understand SWS has led to claims that speech perception must be based on abstract properties of the stimuli far removed from their specific acoustic form. Here it is shown, in bilingual Cantonese/English listeners, that performance with Cantonese SWS is improved by noise vocoding, with no effect on English SWS utterances. This manipulation preserves the abstract informational structure in the signals but changes its surface form. The differential effects of noise vocoding likely arise from the fact that Cantonese is a tonal language and hence more reliant on fundamental frequency (F0) contours for its intelligibility. SWS does not preserve tonal information from the original speech but does have false tonal information signalled by the lowest frequency sinusoid. Noise vocoding SWS appears to minimise the tonal percept, which thus interferes less in the perception of Cantonese. It has no effect in English, which is minimally reliant on F0 variations for intelligibility. Therefore it is not only the informational structure of a sound that is important but also how its acoustic detail interacts with the phonological structure of a given language. PMID:26723325

  13. Effects of speech style, room acoustics, and vocal fatigue on vocal effort.

    PubMed

    Bottalico, Pasquale; Graetzer, Simone; Hunter, Eric J

    2016-05-01

    Vocal effort is a physiological measure that accounts for changes in voice production as vocal loading increases. It has been quantified in terms of sound pressure level (SPL). This study investigates how vocal effort is affected by speaking style, room acoustics, and short-term vocal fatigue. Twenty subjects were recorded while reading a text at normal and loud volumes in anechoic, semi-reverberant, and reverberant rooms in the presence of classroom babble noise. The acoustics in each environment were modified by creating a strong first reflection in the talker position. After each task, the subjects answered questions addressing their perception of the vocal effort, comfort, control, and clarity of their own voice. Variation in SPL for each subject was measured per task. It was found that SPL and self-reported effort increased in the loud style and decreased when the reflective panels were present and when reverberation time increased. Self-reported comfort and control decreased in the loud style, while self-reported clarity increased when panels were present. The lowest magnitude of vocal fatigue was experienced in the semi-reverberant room. The results indicate that early reflections may be used to reduce vocal effort without modifying reverberation time.

  14. Acoustic changes in the production of lexical stress during Lombard speech.

    PubMed

    Arciuli, Joanne; Simpson, Briony S; Vogel, Adam P; Ballard, Kirrie J

    2014-06-01

    The Lombard effect describes the phenomenon of individuals increasing their vocal intensity when speaking in the presence of background noise. Here, we conducted an investigation of the production of lexical stress during Lombard speech. Participants (N = 27) produced the same sentences in three conditions: one quiet condition and two noise conditions at 70 dB (white noise; multi-talker babble). Manual acoustic analyses (syllable duration, vowel intensity, and vowel fundamental frequency) were completed for repeated productions of two trisyllabic words with opposing patterns of lexical stress (weak-strong; strong-weak) in each of the three conditions. In total, 324 productions were analysed (12 utterances per participant). Results revealed that, rather than increasing vocal intensity equally across syllables, participants alter the degree of stress contrastivity when speaking in noise. This was especially evident in the production of strong-weak lexical stress where there was an increase in contrastivity across syllables in terms of intensity and fundamental frequency. This preliminary study paves the way for further research that is needed to establish these findings using a larger set of multisyllabic stimuli.

  15. Aerodynamic and acoustical measures of speech, operatic, and Broadway vocal styles in a professional female singer.

    PubMed

    Stone, R E; Cleveland, Thomas F; Sundberg, P Johan; Prokop, Jan

    2003-09-01

    Understanding how the voice is used in different styles of singing is commonly based on intuitive descriptions offered by performers who are proficient in only one style. Such descriptions are debatable, lack reproducibility, and lack scientifically derived explanations of the characteristics. We undertook acoustic and aerodynamic analyses of a female subject with professional experience in both operatic and Broadway styles of singing, who sang examples in these two styles. How representative the examples are of the respective styles was investigated by means of a listening test. Further, as a reference point, we compared the styles with her speech. Variation in styles associated with pitch and vocal loudness was investigated for various parameters: subglottal pressure, closed quotient, glottal leakage, H1-H2 difference (the level difference between the two lowest partials of the source spectrum), and glottal compliance (the ratio between the air volume displaced in a glottal pulse and the subglottal pressure). Formant frequencies, long-term-average spectrum, and vibrato characteristics were also studied. Characteristics of operatic style emerge as distinctly different from Broadway style, the latter being more similar to speaking. PMID:14513952

  16. Modifying the acoustic impedance of polyurea-based composites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nantasetphong, Wiroj; Amirkhizi, Alireza V.; Jia, Zhanzhan; Nemat-Nasser, Sia

    2013-04-01

    Acoustic impedance is a material property that depends on mass density and acoustic wave speed. An impedance mismatch between two media leads to the partial reflection of an acoustic wave sent from one medium to another. Active sonar is one example of a useful application of this phenomenon, where reflected and scattered acoustic waves enable the detection of objects. If the impedance of an object is matched to that of the surrounding medium, however, the object may be hidden from observation (at least directly) by sonar. In this study, polyurea composites are developed to facilitate such impedance matching. Polyurea is used due to its excellent blast-mitigating properties, easy casting, corrosion protection, abrasion resistance, and various uses in current military technology. Since pure polyurea has impedance higher than that of water (the current medium of interest), low mass density phenolic microballoon particles are added to create composite materials with reduced effective impedances. The volume fraction of particles is varied to study the effect of filler quantity on the acoustic impedance of the resulting composite. The composites are experimentally characterized via ultrasonic measurements. Computational models based on the method of dilute-randomly-distributed inclusions are developed and compared with the experimental results. These experiments and models will facilitate the design of new elastomeric composites with desirable acoustic impedances.

  17. Language-Specific Developmental Differences in Speech Production: A Cross-Language Acoustic Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Li, Fangfang

    2012-01-01

    Speech productions of 40 English- and 40 Japanese-speaking children (aged 2-5) were examined and compared with the speech produced by 20 adult speakers (10 speakers per language). Participants were recorded while repeating words that began with "s" and "sh" sounds. Clear language-specific patterns in adults' speech were found, with English…

  18. Acoustic and perceptual evaluation of category goodness of /t/ and /k/ in typical and misarticulated children's speech.

    PubMed

    Strömbergsson, Sofia; Salvi, Giampiero; House, David

    2015-06-01

    This investigation explores perceptual and acoustic characteristics of children's successful and unsuccessful productions of /t/ and /k/, with a specific aim of exploring perceptual sensitivity to phonetic detail, and the extent to which this sensitivity is reflected in the acoustic domain. Recordings were collected from 4- to 8-year-old children with a speech sound disorder (SSD) who misarticulated one of the target plosives, and compared to productions recorded from peers with typical speech development (TD). Perceptual responses were registered with regards to a visual-analog scale, ranging from "clear [t]" to "clear [k]." Statistical models of prototypical productions were built, based on spectral moments and discrete cosine transform features, and used in the scoring of SSD productions. In the perceptual evaluation, "clear substitutions" were rated as less prototypical than correct productions. Moreover, target-appropriate productions of /t/ and /k/ produced by children with SSD were rated as less prototypical than those produced by TD peers. The acoustical modeling could to a large extent discriminate between the gross categories /t/ and /k/, and scored the SSD utterances on a continuous scale that was largely consistent with the category of production. However, none of the methods exhibited the same sensitivity to phonetic detail as the human listeners.

  19. Disordered speech disrupts conversational entrainment: a study of acoustic-prosodic entrainment and communicative success in populations with communication challenges.

    PubMed

    Borrie, Stephanie A; Lubold, Nichola; Pon-Barry, Heather

    2015-01-01

    Conversational entrainment, a pervasive communication phenomenon in which dialogue partners adapt their behaviors to align more closely with one another, is considered essential for successful spoken interaction. While well-established in other disciplines, this phenomenon has received limited attention in the field of speech pathology and the study of communication breakdowns in clinical populations. The current study examined acoustic-prosodic entrainment, as well as a measure of communicative success, in three distinctly different dialogue groups: (i) healthy native vs. healthy native speakers (Control), (ii) healthy native vs. foreign-accented speakers (Accented), and (iii) healthy native vs. dysarthric speakers (Disordered). Dialogue group comparisons revealed significant differences in how the groups entrain on particular acoustic-prosodic features, including pitch, intensity, and jitter. Most notably, the Disordered dialogues were characterized by significantly less acoustic-prosodic entrainment than the Control dialogues. Further, a positive relationship between entrainment indices and communicative success was identified. These results suggest that the study of conversational entrainment in speech pathology will have essential implications for both scientific theory and clinical application in this domain.

  20. Systematic Studies of Modified Vocalization: The Effect of Speech Rate on Speech Production Measures during Metronome-Paced Speech in Persons Who Stutter

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Davidow, Jason H.

    2014-01-01

    Background: Metronome-paced speech results in the elimination, or substantial reduction, of stuttering moments. The cause of fluency during this fluency-inducing condition is unknown. Several investigations have reported changes in speech pattern characteristics from a control condition to a metronome-paced speech condition, but failure to control…

  1. Modified dust-acoustic waves in dusty plasma with Lennard-Jones potential

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Qian, Y. Z.; Chen, H.; Yang, X. S.; Liu, S. Q.

    2015-10-01

    Dust-acoustic waves in a dusty plasma are investigated by solving the Vlasov equation including the effect of dust-dust interaction modeled by a Lennard-Jones-like potential. The latter contains a potential well and is applicable when thermionic or photo emission processes are important. It is shown that the excitation and linear dispersion of the dust-acoustic waves are strongly modified. In fact, the phase of the dust acoustic waves is shifted and a cut-off for the long-wavelength modes appears, leading to a purely growing instability.

  2. Designing acoustics for linguistically diverse classrooms: Effects of background noise, reverberation and talker foreign accent on speech comprehension by native and non-native English-speaking listeners

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peng, Zhao Ellen

    The current classroom acoustics standard (ANSI S12.60-2010) recommends core learning spaces not to exceed background noise level (BNL) of 35 dBA and reverberation time (RT) of 0.6 second, based on speech intelligibility performance mainly by the native English-speaking population. Existing literature has not correlated these recommended values well with student learning outcomes. With a growing population of non-native English speakers in American classrooms, the special needs for perceiving degraded speech among non-native listeners, either due to realistic room acoustics or talker foreign accent, have not been addressed in the current standard. This research seeks to investigate the effects of BNL and RT on the comprehension of English speech from native English and native Mandarin Chinese talkers as perceived by native and non-native English listeners, and to provide acoustic design guidelines to supplement the existing standard. This dissertation presents two studies on the effects of RT and BNL on more realistic classroom learning experiences. How do native and non-native English-speaking listeners perform on speech comprehension tasks under adverse acoustic conditions, if the English speech is produced by talkers of native English (Study 1) versus native Mandarin Chinese (Study 2)? Speech comprehension materials were played back in a listening chamber to individual listeners: native and non-native English-speaking in Study 1; native English, native Mandarin Chinese, and other non-native English-speaking in Study 2. Each listener was screened for baseline English proficiency level, and completed dual tasks simultaneously involving speech comprehension and adaptive dot-tracing under 15 acoustic conditions, comprised of three BNL conditions (RC-30, 40, and 50) and five RT scenarios (0.4 to 1.2 seconds). The results show that BNL and RT negatively affect both objective performance and subjective perception of speech comprehension, more severely for non

  3. Acoustic Analysis of Clear Versus Conversational Speech in Individuals with Parkinson Disease

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Goberman, A.M.; Elmer, L.W.

    2005-01-01

    A number of studies have been devoted to the examination of clear versus conversational speech in non-impaired speakers. The purpose of these previous studies has been primarily to help increase speech intelligibility for the benefit of hearing-impaired listeners. The goal of the present study was to examine differences between conversational and…

  4. A Computational Model of Word Segmentation from Continuous Speech Using Transitional Probabilities of Atomic Acoustic Events

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rasanen, Okko

    2011-01-01

    Word segmentation from continuous speech is a difficult task that is faced by human infants when they start to learn their native language. Several studies indicate that infants might use several different cues to solve this problem, including intonation, linguistic stress, and transitional probabilities between subsequent speech sounds. In this…

  5. Acoustic Analysis of the Speech of Children with Cochlear Implants: A Longitudinal Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Liker, Marko; Mildner, Vesna; Sindija, Branka

    2007-01-01

    The aim of the study was to analyse the speech of the children with cochlear implants, and compare it with the speech of hearing controls. We focused on three categories of Croatian sounds: vowels (F1 and F2 frequencies), fricatives (noise frequencies of /s/ and /[esh]/ ), and affricates (total duration and the pattern of stop-fricative components…

  6. Disordered speech disrupts conversational entrainment: a study of acoustic-prosodic entrainment and communicative success in populations with communication challenges

    PubMed Central

    Borrie, Stephanie A.; Lubold, Nichola; Pon-Barry, Heather

    2015-01-01

    Conversational entrainment, a pervasive communication phenomenon in which dialogue partners adapt their behaviors to align more closely with one another, is considered essential for successful spoken interaction. While well-established in other disciplines, this phenomenon has received limited attention in the field of speech pathology and the study of communication breakdowns in clinical populations. The current study examined acoustic-prosodic entrainment, as well as a measure of communicative success, in three distinctly different dialogue groups: (i) healthy native vs. healthy native speakers (Control), (ii) healthy native vs. foreign-accented speakers (Accented), and (iii) healthy native vs. dysarthric speakers (Disordered). Dialogue group comparisons revealed significant differences in how the groups entrain on particular acoustic–prosodic features, including pitch, intensity, and jitter. Most notably, the Disordered dialogues were characterized by significantly less acoustic-prosodic entrainment than the Control dialogues. Further, a positive relationship between entrainment indices and communicative success was identified. These results suggest that the study of conversational entrainment in speech pathology will have essential implications for both scientific theory and clinical application in this domain. PMID:26321996

  7. Echo-acoustic flow dynamically modifies the cortical map of target range in bats.

    PubMed

    Bartenstein, Sophia K; Gerstenberg, Nadine; Vanderelst, Dieter; Peremans, Herbert; Firzlaff, Uwe

    2014-01-01

    Echolocating bats use the delay between their sonar emissions and the reflected echoes to measure target range, a crucial parameter for avoiding collisions or capturing prey. In many bat species, target range is represented as an orderly organized map of echo delay in the auditory cortex. Here we show that the map of target range in bats is dynamically modified by the continuously changing flow of acoustic information perceived during flight ('echo-acoustic flow'). Combining dynamic acoustic stimulation in virtual space with extracellular recordings, we found that neurons in the auditory cortex of the bat Phyllostomus discolor encode echo-acoustic flow information on the geometric relation between targets and the bat's flight trajectory, rather than echo delay per se. Specifically, the cortical representation of close-range targets is enlarged when the lateral passing distance of the target decreases. This flow-dependent enlargement of target representation may trigger adaptive behaviours such as vocal control or flight manoeuvres. PMID:25131175

  8. Echo-acoustic flow dynamically modifies the cortical map of target range in bats.

    PubMed

    Bartenstein, Sophia K; Gerstenberg, Nadine; Vanderelst, Dieter; Peremans, Herbert; Firzlaff, Uwe

    2014-01-01

    Echolocating bats use the delay between their sonar emissions and the reflected echoes to measure target range, a crucial parameter for avoiding collisions or capturing prey. In many bat species, target range is represented as an orderly organized map of echo delay in the auditory cortex. Here we show that the map of target range in bats is dynamically modified by the continuously changing flow of acoustic information perceived during flight ('echo-acoustic flow'). Combining dynamic acoustic stimulation in virtual space with extracellular recordings, we found that neurons in the auditory cortex of the bat Phyllostomus discolor encode echo-acoustic flow information on the geometric relation between targets and the bat's flight trajectory, rather than echo delay per se. Specifically, the cortical representation of close-range targets is enlarged when the lateral passing distance of the target decreases. This flow-dependent enlargement of target representation may trigger adaptive behaviours such as vocal control or flight manoeuvres.

  9. Acoustic correlates of vowel intelligibility in clear and conversational speech for young normal-hearing and elderly hearing-impaired listeners.

    PubMed

    Ferguson, Sarah Hargus; Quené, Hugo

    2014-06-01

    The present investigation carried out acoustic analyses of vowels in clear and conversational speech produced by 41 talkers. Mixed-effects models were then deployed to examine relationships among acoustic and perceptual data for these vowels. Acoustic data include vowel duration, steady-state formant frequencies, and two measures of dynamic formant movement. Perceptual data consist of vowel intelligibility in noise for young normal-hearing and elderly hearing-impaired listeners, as reported by Ferguson in 2004 and 2012 [J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 116, 2365-2373 (2004); J. Speech Lang. Hear. Res. 55, 779-790 (2012)], respectively. Significant clear speech effects were observed for all acoustic metrics, although not all measures changed for all vowels and considerable talker variability was observed. Mixed-effects analyses revealed that the contribution of duration and steady-state formant information to vowel intelligibility differed for the two listener groups. This outcome is consistent with earlier research suggesting that hearing loss, and possibly aging, alters the way acoustic cues are used for identifying vowels.

  10. Acoustic Variations in Adductor Spasmodic Dysphonia as a Function of Speech Task.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sapienza, Christine M.; Walton, Suzanne; Murry, Thomas

    1999-01-01

    Acoustic phonatory events were identified in 14 women diagnosed with adductor spasmodic dysphonia (ADSD), a focal laryngeal dystonia that disturbs phonatory function, and compared with those of 14 age-matched women with no vocal dysfunction. Findings indicated ADSD subjects produced more aberrant acoustic events than controls during tasks of…

  11. Applied Self-Statement Modification and Applied Modified Desensitization in the Treatment of Speech Anxiety: The Synergy Hypothesis.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Melanson, Diane C.

    A study examined the relative effectiveness and synergistic effect of two treatments for reducing speech anxiety--Self-Statement Modification (SSM), a therapy focused on modification of cognitive behavior; and Modified Desensitization (MD), a therapy focused on physiological variables, utilizing relaxation training, group hierarchy construction,…

  12. Revisiting Neil Armstrongs Moon-Landing Quote: Implications for Speech Perception, Function Word Reduction, and Acoustic Ambiguity.

    PubMed

    Baese-Berk, Melissa M; Dilley, Laura C; Schmidt, Stephanie; Morrill, Tuuli H; Pitt, Mark A

    2016-01-01

    Neil Armstrong insisted that his quote upon landing on the moon was misheard, and that he had said one small step for a man, instead of one small step for man. What he said is unclear in part because function words like a can be reduced and spectrally indistinguishable from the preceding context. Therefore, their presence can be ambiguous, and they may disappear perceptually depending on the rate of surrounding speech. Two experiments are presented examining production and perception of reduced tokens of for and for a in spontaneous speech. Experiment 1 investigates the distributions of several acoustic features of for and for a. The results suggest that the distributions of for and for a overlap substantially, both in terms of temporal and spectral characteristics. Experiment 2 examines perception of these same tokens when the context speaking rate differs. The perceptibility of the function word a varies as a function of this context speaking rate. These results demonstrate that substantial ambiguity exists in the original quote from Armstrong, and that this ambiguity may be understood through context speaking rate. PMID:27603209

  13. Revisiting Neil Armstrongs Moon-Landing Quote: Implications for Speech Perception, Function Word Reduction, and Acoustic Ambiguity

    PubMed Central

    Baese-Berk, Melissa M.; Dilley, Laura C.; Schmidt, Stephanie; Morrill, Tuuli H.; Pitt, Mark A.

    2016-01-01

    Neil Armstrong insisted that his quote upon landing on the moon was misheard, and that he had said one small step for a man, instead of one small step for man. What he said is unclear in part because function words like a can be reduced and spectrally indistinguishable from the preceding context. Therefore, their presence can be ambiguous, and they may disappear perceptually depending on the rate of surrounding speech. Two experiments are presented examining production and perception of reduced tokens of for and for a in spontaneous speech. Experiment 1 investigates the distributions of several acoustic features of for and for a. The results suggest that the distributions of for and for a overlap substantially, both in terms of temporal and spectral characteristics. Experiment 2 examines perception of these same tokens when the context speaking rate differs. The perceptibility of the function word a varies as a function of this context speaking rate. These results demonstrate that substantial ambiguity exists in the original quote from Armstrong, and that this ambiguity may be understood through context speaking rate. PMID:27603209

  14. Revisiting Neil Armstrongs Moon-Landing Quote: Implications for Speech Perception, Function Word Reduction, and Acoustic Ambiguity.

    PubMed

    Baese-Berk, Melissa M; Dilley, Laura C; Schmidt, Stephanie; Morrill, Tuuli H; Pitt, Mark A

    2016-01-01

    Neil Armstrong insisted that his quote upon landing on the moon was misheard, and that he had said one small step for a man, instead of one small step for man. What he said is unclear in part because function words like a can be reduced and spectrally indistinguishable from the preceding context. Therefore, their presence can be ambiguous, and they may disappear perceptually depending on the rate of surrounding speech. Two experiments are presented examining production and perception of reduced tokens of for and for a in spontaneous speech. Experiment 1 investigates the distributions of several acoustic features of for and for a. The results suggest that the distributions of for and for a overlap substantially, both in terms of temporal and spectral characteristics. Experiment 2 examines perception of these same tokens when the context speaking rate differs. The perceptibility of the function word a varies as a function of this context speaking rate. These results demonstrate that substantial ambiguity exists in the original quote from Armstrong, and that this ambiguity may be understood through context speaking rate.

  15. Lexico-semantic and acoustic-phonetic processes in the perception of noise-vocoded speech: implications for cochlear implantation

    PubMed Central

    McGettigan, Carolyn; Rosen, Stuart; Scott, Sophie K.

    2014-01-01

    Noise-vocoding is a transformation which, when applied to speech, severely reduces spectral resolution and eliminates periodicity, yielding a stimulus that sounds “like a harsh whisper” (Scott et al., 2000, p. 2401). This process simulates a cochlear implant, where the activity of many thousand hair cells in the inner ear is replaced by direct stimulation of the auditory nerve by a small number of tonotopically-arranged electrodes. Although a cochlear implant offers a powerful means of restoring some degree of hearing to profoundly deaf individuals, the outcomes for spoken communication are highly variable (Moore and Shannon, 2009). Some variability may arise from differences in peripheral representation (e.g., the degree of residual nerve survival) but some may reflect differences in higher-order linguistic processing. In order to explore this possibility, we used noise-vocoding to explore speech recognition and perceptual learning in normal-hearing listeners tested across several levels of the linguistic hierarchy: segments (consonants and vowels), single words, and sentences. Listeners improved significantly on all tasks across two test sessions. In the first session, individual differences analyses revealed two independently varying sources of variability: one lexico-semantic in nature and implicating the recognition of words and sentences, and the other an acoustic-phonetic factor associated with words and segments. However, consequent to learning, by the second session there was a more uniform covariance pattern concerning all stimulus types. A further analysis of phonetic feature recognition allowed greater insight into learning-related changes in perception and showed that, surprisingly, participants did not make full use of cues that were preserved in the stimuli (e.g., vowel duration). We discuss these findings in relation cochlear implantation, and suggest auditory training strategies to maximize speech recognition performance in the absence of

  16. Comparison of Acoustic and Kinematic Approaches to Measuring Utterance-Level Speech Variability

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Howell, Peter; Anderson, Andrew J.; Bartrip, Jon; Bailey, Eleanor

    2009-01-01

    Purpose: The spatiotemporal index (STI) is one measure of variability. As currently implemented, kinematic data are used, requiring equipment that cannot be used with some patient groups or in scanners. An experiment is reported that addressed whether STI can be extended to an audio measure of sound pressure of the speech envelope over time that…

  17. The Exploitation of Subphonemic Acoustic Detail in L2 Speech Segmentation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shoemaker, Ellenor

    2014-01-01

    The current study addresses an aspect of second language (L2) phonological acquisition that has received little attention to date--namely, the acquisition of allophonic variation as a word boundary cue. The role of subphonemic variation in the segmentation of speech by native speakers has been indisputably demonstrated; however, the acquisition of…

  18. Impact of Aberrant Acoustic Properties on the Perception of Sound Quality in Electrolarynx Speech

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Meltzner, Geoffrey S.; Hillman, Robert E.

    2005-01-01

    A large percentage of patients who have undergone laryngectomy to treat advanced laryngeal cancer rely on an electrolarynx (EL) to communicate verbally. Although serviceable, EL speech is plagued by shortcomings in both sound quality and intelligibility. This study sought to better quantify the relative contributions of previously identified…

  19. MOOD STATE PREDICTION FROM SPEECH OF VARYING ACOUSTIC QUALITY FOR INDIVIDUALS WITH BIPOLAR DISORDER

    PubMed Central

    Gideon, John; Provost, Emily Mower; McInnis, Melvin

    2016-01-01

    Speech contains patterns that can be altered by the mood of an individual. There is an increasing focus on automated and distributed methods to collect and monitor speech from large groups of patients suffering from mental health disorders. However, as the scope of these collections increases, the variability in the data also increases. This variability is due in part to the range in the quality of the devices, which in turn affects the quality of the recorded data, negatively impacting the accuracy of automatic assessment. It is necessary to mitigate variability effects in order to expand the impact of these technologies. This paper explores speech collected from phone recordings for analysis of mood in individuals with bipolar disorder. Two different phones with varying amounts of clipping, loudness, and noise are employed. We describe methodologies for use during preprocessing, feature extraction, and data modeling to correct these differences and make the devices more comparable. The results demonstrate that these pipeline modifications result in statistically significantly higher performance, which highlights the potential of distributed mental health systems. PMID:27570493

  20. Acoustic Analyses of Speech Sounds and Rhythms in Japanese- and English-Learning Infants

    PubMed Central

    Yamashita, Yuko; Nakajima, Yoshitaka; Ueda, Kazuo; Shimada, Yohko; Hirsh, David; Seno, Takeharu; Smith, Benjamin Alexander

    2013-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to explore developmental changes, in terms of spectral fluctuations and temporal periodicity with Japanese- and English-learning infants. Three age groups (15, 20, and 24 months) were selected, because infants diversify phonetic inventories with age. Natural speech of the infants was recorded. We utilized a critical-band-filter bank, which simulated the frequency resolution in adults’ auditory periphery. First, the correlations between the power fluctuations of the critical-band outputs represented by factor analysis were observed in order to see how the critical bands should be connected to each other, if a listener is to differentiate sounds in infants’ speech. In the following analysis, we analyzed the temporal fluctuations of factor scores by calculating autocorrelations. The present analysis identified three factors as had been observed in adult speech at 24 months of age in both linguistic environments. These three factors were shifted to a higher frequency range corresponding to the smaller vocal tract size of the infants. The results suggest that the vocal tract structures of the infants had developed to become adult-like configuration by 24 months of age in both language environments. The amount of utterances with periodic nature of shorter time increased with age in both environments. This trend was clearer in the Japanese environment. PMID:23450824

  1. Quantifying the Effect of Compression Hearing Aid Release Time on Speech Acoustics and Intelligibility

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jenstad, Lorienne M.; Souza, Pamela E.

    2005-01-01

    Compression hearing aids have the inherent, and often adjustable, feature of release time from compression. Research to date does not provide a consensus on how to choose or set release time. The current study had 2 purposes: (a) a comprehensive evaluation of the acoustic effects of release time for a single-channel compression system in quiet and…

  2. Linguistic Emphasis in Maternal Speech to Preschool Language Learners with Language Impairments: An Acoustical Perspective.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Scheffel, Debora L.; Ingrisano, Dennis R-S

    2000-01-01

    The nature of linguistic emphasis was studied from audio recordings of 29 mother-child dyads. Nineteen dyads involved mothers interacting with their 4-year-olds who evidenced language impairments. Approximately 84 percent of children evidencing language impairments could be so classified based on the acoustic variables associated with maternal use…

  3. Exploration of Acoustic Features for Automatic Vowel Discrimination in Spontaneous Speech

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tyson, Na'im R.

    2012-01-01

    In an attempt to understand what acoustic/auditory feature sets motivated transcribers towards certain labeling decisions, I built machine learning models that were capable of discriminating between canonical and non-canonical vowels excised from the Buckeye Corpus. Specifically, I wanted to model when the dictionary form and the transcribed-form…

  4. Intelligibility of Telephone Speech for the Hearing Impaired When Various Microphones Are Used for Acoustic Coupling.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Janota, Claus P.; Janota, Jeanette Olach

    1991-01-01

    Various candidate microphones were evaluated for acoustic coupling of hearing aids to a telephone receiver. Results from testing by 9 hearing-impaired adults found comparable listening performance with a pressure gradient microphone at a 10 decibel higher level of interfering noise than with a normal pressure-sensitive microphone. (Author/PB)

  5. Classifying acoustic signals into phoneme categories: average and dyslexic readers make use of complex dynamical patterns and multifractal scaling properties of the speech signal.

    PubMed

    Hasselman, Fred

    2015-01-01

    Several competing aetiologies of developmental dyslexia suggest that the problems with acquiring literacy skills are causally entailed by low-level auditory and/or speech perception processes. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the diverging claims about the specific deficient peceptual processes under conditions of strong inference. Theoretically relevant acoustic features were extracted from a set of artificial speech stimuli that lie on a /bAk/-/dAk/ continuum. The features were tested on their ability to enable a simple classifier (Quadratic Discriminant Analysis) to reproduce the observed classification performance of average and dyslexic readers in a speech perception experiment. The 'classical' features examined were based on component process accounts of developmental dyslexia such as the supposed deficit in Envelope Rise Time detection and the deficit in the detection of rapid changes in the distribution of energy in the frequency spectrum (formant transitions). Studies examining these temporal processing deficit hypotheses do not employ measures that quantify the temporal dynamics of stimuli. It is shown that measures based on quantification of the dynamics of complex, interaction-dominant systems (Recurrence Quantification Analysis and the multifractal spectrum) enable QDA to classify the stimuli almost identically as observed in dyslexic and average reading participants. It seems unlikely that participants used any of the features that are traditionally associated with accounts of (impaired) speech perception. The nature of the variables quantifying the temporal dynamics of the speech stimuli imply that the classification of speech stimuli cannot be regarded as a linear aggregate of component processes that each parse the acoustic signal independent of one another, as is assumed by the 'classical' aetiologies of developmental dyslexia. It is suggested that the results imply that the differences in speech perception performance between average and

  6. Classifying acoustic signals into phoneme categories: average and dyslexic readers make use of complex dynamical patterns and multifractal scaling properties of the speech signal.

    PubMed

    Hasselman, Fred

    2015-01-01

    Several competing aetiologies of developmental dyslexia suggest that the problems with acquiring literacy skills are causally entailed by low-level auditory and/or speech perception processes. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the diverging claims about the specific deficient peceptual processes under conditions of strong inference. Theoretically relevant acoustic features were extracted from a set of artificial speech stimuli that lie on a /bAk/-/dAk/ continuum. The features were tested on their ability to enable a simple classifier (Quadratic Discriminant Analysis) to reproduce the observed classification performance of average and dyslexic readers in a speech perception experiment. The 'classical' features examined were based on component process accounts of developmental dyslexia such as the supposed deficit in Envelope Rise Time detection and the deficit in the detection of rapid changes in the distribution of energy in the frequency spectrum (formant transitions). Studies examining these temporal processing deficit hypotheses do not employ measures that quantify the temporal dynamics of stimuli. It is shown that measures based on quantification of the dynamics of complex, interaction-dominant systems (Recurrence Quantification Analysis and the multifractal spectrum) enable QDA to classify the stimuli almost identically as observed in dyslexic and average reading participants. It seems unlikely that participants used any of the features that are traditionally associated with accounts of (impaired) speech perception. The nature of the variables quantifying the temporal dynamics of the speech stimuli imply that the classification of speech stimuli cannot be regarded as a linear aggregate of component processes that each parse the acoustic signal independent of one another, as is assumed by the 'classical' aetiologies of developmental dyslexia. It is suggested that the results imply that the differences in speech perception performance between average and

  7. Classifying acoustic signals into phoneme categories: average and dyslexic readers make use of complex dynamical patterns and multifractal scaling properties of the speech signal

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Several competing aetiologies of developmental dyslexia suggest that the problems with acquiring literacy skills are causally entailed by low-level auditory and/or speech perception processes. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the diverging claims about the specific deficient peceptual processes under conditions of strong inference. Theoretically relevant acoustic features were extracted from a set of artificial speech stimuli that lie on a /bAk/-/dAk/ continuum. The features were tested on their ability to enable a simple classifier (Quadratic Discriminant Analysis) to reproduce the observed classification performance of average and dyslexic readers in a speech perception experiment. The ‘classical’ features examined were based on component process accounts of developmental dyslexia such as the supposed deficit in Envelope Rise Time detection and the deficit in the detection of rapid changes in the distribution of energy in the frequency spectrum (formant transitions). Studies examining these temporal processing deficit hypotheses do not employ measures that quantify the temporal dynamics of stimuli. It is shown that measures based on quantification of the dynamics of complex, interaction-dominant systems (Recurrence Quantification Analysis and the multifractal spectrum) enable QDA to classify the stimuli almost identically as observed in dyslexic and average reading participants. It seems unlikely that participants used any of the features that are traditionally associated with accounts of (impaired) speech perception. The nature of the variables quantifying the temporal dynamics of the speech stimuli imply that the classification of speech stimuli cannot be regarded as a linear aggregate of component processes that each parse the acoustic signal independent of one another, as is assumed by the ‘classical’ aetiologies of developmental dyslexia. It is suggested that the results imply that the differences in speech perception performance between

  8. Speech, Speech!

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McComb, Gordon

    1982-01-01

    Discussion focuses on the nature of computer-generated speech and voice synthesis today. State-of-the-art devices for home computers are called text-to-speech (TTS) systems. Details about the operation and use of TTS synthesizers are provided, and the time saving in programing over previous methods is emphasized. (MP)

  9. Measurement of Trained Speech Patterns in Stuttering: Interjudge and Intrajudge Agreement of Experts by Means of Modified Time-Interval Analysis

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Alpermann, Anke; Huber, Walter; Natke, Ulrich; Willmes, Klaus

    2010-01-01

    Improved fluency after stuttering therapy is usually measured by the percentage of stuttered syllables. However, outcome studies rarely evaluate the use of trained speech patterns that speakers use to manage stuttering. This study investigated whether the modified time interval analysis can distinguish between trained speech patterns, fluent…

  10. A Robust Approach For Acoustic Noise Suppression In Speech Using ANFIS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martinek, Radek; Kelnar, Michal; Vanus, Jan; Bilik, Petr; Zidek, Jan

    2015-11-01

    The authors of this article deals with the implementation of a combination of techniques of the fuzzy system and artificial intelligence in the application area of non-linear noise and interference suppression. This structure used is called an Adaptive Neuro Fuzzy Inference System (ANFIS). This system finds practical use mainly in audio telephone (mobile) communication in a noisy environment (transport, production halls, sports matches, etc). Experimental methods based on the two-input adaptive noise cancellation concept was clearly outlined. Within the experiments carried out, the authors created, based on the ANFIS structure, a comprehensive system for adaptive suppression of unwanted background interference that occurs in audio communication and degrades the audio signal. The system designed has been tested on real voice signals. This article presents the investigation and comparison amongst three distinct approaches to noise cancellation in speech; they are LMS (least mean squares) and RLS (recursive least squares) adaptive filtering and ANFIS. A careful review of literatures indicated the importance of non-linear adaptive algorithms over linear ones in noise cancellation. It was concluded that the ANFIS approach had the overall best performance as it efficiently cancelled noise even in highly noise-degraded speech. Results were drawn from the successful experimentation, subjective-based tests were used to analyse their comparative performance while objective tests were used to validate them. Implementation of algorithms was experimentally carried out in Matlab to justify the claims and determine their relative performances.

  11. Streptavidin Modified ZnO Film Bulk Acoustic Resonator for Detection of Tumor Marker Mucin 1

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zheng, Dan; Guo, Peng; Xiong, Juan; Wang, Shengfu

    2016-09-01

    A ZnO-based film bulk acoustic resonator has been fabricated using a magnetron sputtering technology, which was employed as a biosensor for detection of mucin 1. The resonant frequency of the thin-film bulk acoustic resonator was located near at 1503.3 MHz. The average electromechanical coupling factor {K}_{eff}^2 and quality factor Q were 2.39 % and 224, respectively. Using the specific binding system of avidin-biotin, the streptavidin was self-assembled on the top gold electrode as the sensitive layer to indirectly test the MUC1 molecules. The resonant frequency of the biosensor decreases in response to the mass loading in range of 20-500 nM. The sensor modified with the streptavidin exhibits a high sensitivity of 4642.6 Hz/nM and a good selectivity.

  12. Streptavidin Modified ZnO Film Bulk Acoustic Resonator for Detection of Tumor Marker Mucin 1.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Dan; Guo, Peng; Xiong, Juan; Wang, Shengfu

    2016-12-01

    A ZnO-based film bulk acoustic resonator has been fabricated using a magnetron sputtering technology, which was employed as a biosensor for detection of mucin 1. The resonant frequency of the thin-film bulk acoustic resonator was located near at 1503.3 MHz. The average electromechanical coupling factor [Formula: see text] and quality factor Q were 2.39 % and 224, respectively. Using the specific binding system of avidin-biotin, the streptavidin was self-assembled on the top gold electrode as the sensitive layer to indirectly test the MUC1 molecules. The resonant frequency of the biosensor decreases in response to the mass loading in range of 20-500 nM. The sensor modified with the streptavidin exhibits a high sensitivity of 4642.6 Hz/nM and a good selectivity.

  13. Streptavidin Modified ZnO Film Bulk Acoustic Resonator for Detection of Tumor Marker Mucin 1.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Dan; Guo, Peng; Xiong, Juan; Wang, Shengfu

    2016-12-01

    A ZnO-based film bulk acoustic resonator has been fabricated using a magnetron sputtering technology, which was employed as a biosensor for detection of mucin 1. The resonant frequency of the thin-film bulk acoustic resonator was located near at 1503.3 MHz. The average electromechanical coupling factor [Formula: see text] and quality factor Q were 2.39 % and 224, respectively. Using the specific binding system of avidin-biotin, the streptavidin was self-assembled on the top gold electrode as the sensitive layer to indirectly test the MUC1 molecules. The resonant frequency of the biosensor decreases in response to the mass loading in range of 20-500 nM. The sensor modified with the streptavidin exhibits a high sensitivity of 4642.6 Hz/nM and a good selectivity. PMID:27624339

  14. Predicting Speech Intelligibility with a Multiple Speech Subsystems Approach in Children with Cerebral Palsy

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lee, Jimin; Hustad, Katherine C.; Weismer, Gary

    2014-01-01

    Purpose: Speech acoustic characteristics of children with cerebral palsy (CP) were examined with a multiple speech subsystems approach; speech intelligibility was evaluated using a prediction model in which acoustic measures were selected to represent three speech subsystems. Method: Nine acoustic variables reflecting different subsystems, and…

  15. [A modified speech enhancement algorithm for electronic cochlear implant and its digital signal processing realization].

    PubMed

    Wang, Yulin; Tian, Xuelong

    2014-08-01

    In order to improve the speech quality and auditory perceptiveness of electronic cochlear implant under strong noise background, a speech enhancement system used for electronic cochlear implant front-end was constructed. Taking digital signal processing (DSP) as the core, the system combines its multi-channel buffered serial port (McBSP) data transmission channel with extended audio interface chip TLV320AIC10, so speech signal acquisition and output with high speed are realized. Meanwhile, due to the traditional speech enhancement method which has the problems as bad adaptability, slow convergence speed and big steady-state error, versiera function and de-correlation principle were used to improve the existing adaptive filtering algorithm, which effectively enhanced the quality of voice communications. Test results verified the stability of the system and the de-noising performance of the algorithm, and it also proved that they could provide clearer speech signals for the deaf or tinnitus patients.

  16. [A modified speech enhancement algorithm for electronic cochlear implant and its digital signal processing realization].

    PubMed

    Wang, Yulin; Tian, Xuelong

    2014-08-01

    In order to improve the speech quality and auditory perceptiveness of electronic cochlear implant under strong noise background, a speech enhancement system used for electronic cochlear implant front-end was constructed. Taking digital signal processing (DSP) as the core, the system combines its multi-channel buffered serial port (McBSP) data transmission channel with extended audio interface chip TLV320AIC10, so speech signal acquisition and output with high speed are realized. Meanwhile, due to the traditional speech enhancement method which has the problems as bad adaptability, slow convergence speed and big steady-state error, versiera function and de-correlation principle were used to improve the existing adaptive filtering algorithm, which effectively enhanced the quality of voice communications. Test results verified the stability of the system and the de-noising performance of the algorithm, and it also proved that they could provide clearer speech signals for the deaf or tinnitus patients. PMID:25464779

  17. [A modified speech enhancement algorithm for electronic cochlear implant and its digital signal processing realization].

    PubMed

    Wang, Yulin; Tian, Xuelong

    2014-08-01

    In order to improve the speech quality and auditory perceptiveness of electronic cochlear implant under strong noise background, a speech enhancement system used for electronic cochlear implant front-end was constructed. Taking digital signal processing (DSP) as the core, the system combines its multi-channel buffered serial port (McBSP) data transmission channel with extended audio interface chip TLV320AIC10, so speech signal acquisition and output with high speed are realized. Meanwhile, due to the traditional speech enhancement method which has the problems as bad adaptability, slow convergence speed and big steady-state error, versiera function and de-correlation principle were used to improve the existing adaptive filtering algorithm, which effectively enhanced the quality of voice communications. Test results verified the stability of the system and the de-noising performance of the algorithm, and it also proved that they could provide clearer speech signals for the deaf or tinnitus patients. PMID:25508410

  18. [Quantification and improvement of speech transmission performance using headphones in acoustic stimulated functional magnetic resonance imaging].

    PubMed

    Yamamura, Ken ichiro; Takatsu, Yasuo; Miyati, Tosiaki; Kimura, Tetsuya

    2014-10-01

    Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) has made a major contribution to the understanding of higher brain function, but fMRI with auditory stimulation, used in the planning of brain tumor surgery, is often inaccurate because there is a risk that the sounds used in the trial may not be correctly transmitted to the subjects due to acoustic noise. This prompted us to devise a method of digitizing sound transmission ability from the accuracy rate of 67 syllables, classified into three types. We evaluated this with and without acoustic noise during imaging. We also improved the structure of the headphones and compared their sound transmission ability with that of conventional headphones attached to an MRI device (a GE Signa HDxt 3.0 T). We calculated and compared the sound transmission ability of the conventional headphones with that of the improved model. The 95 percent upper confidence limit (UCL) was used as the threshold for accuracy rate of hearing for both headphone models. There was a statistically significant difference between the conventional model and the improved model during imaging (p < 0.01). The rate of accuracy of the improved model was 16 percent higher. 29 and 22 syllables were accurate at a 95% UCL in the improved model and the conventional model, respectively. This study revealed the evaluation system used in this study to be useful for correctly identifying syllables during fMRI.

  19. Acoustic evidence for the development of gestural coordination in the speech of 2-year-olds: a longitudinal study.

    PubMed

    Goodell, E W; Studdert-Kennedy, M

    1993-08-01

    Studies of child phonology have often assumed that young children first master a repertoire of phonemes and then build their lexicon by forming combinations of these abstract, contrastive units. However, evidence from children's systematic errors suggests that children first build a repertoire of words as integral sequences of gestures and then gradually differentiate these sequences into their gestural and segmental components. Recently, experimental support for this position has been found in the acoustic records of the speech of 3-, 5-, and 7-year-old children, suggesting that even in older children some phonemes have not yet fully segregated as units of gestural organization and control. The present longitudinal study extends this work to younger children (22- and 32-month-olds). Results demonstrate clear differences in the duration and coordination of gestures between children and adults, and a clear shift toward the patterns of adult speakers during roughly the third year of life. Details of the child-adult differences and developmental changes vary from one aspect of an utterance to another. PMID:8377484

  20. Subjective evaluation of speech and noise in learning environments in the realm of classroom acoustics: Results from laboratory and field experiments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meis, Markus; Nocke, Christian; Hofmann, Simone; Becker, Bernhard

    2005-04-01

    The impact of different acoustical conditions in learning environments on noise annoyance and the evaluation of speech quality were tested in a series of three experiments. In Experiment 1 (n=79) the auralization of seven classrooms with reverberation times from 0.55 to 3.21 s [average between 250 Hz to 2 kHz] served to develop a Semantic Differential, evaluating a simulated teacher's voice. Four factors were found: acoustical comfort, roughness, sharpness, and loudness. In Experiment 2, the effects of two classroom renovations were examined from a holistic perspective. The rooms were treated acoustically with acoustic ceilings (RT=0.5 s [250 Hz-2 kHz]) and muffling floor materials as well as non-acoustically with a new lighting system and color design. The results indicate that pupils (n=61) in renovated classrooms judged the simulated voice more positively, were less annoyed from the noise in classrooms, and were more motivated to participate in the lessons. In Experiment 3 the sound environments from six different lecture rooms (RT=0.8 to 1.39 s [250 Hz-2 kHz]) in two Universities of Oldenburg were evaluated by 321 students during the lectures. Evidence found supports the assumption that acoustical comfort in rooms is dependent on frequency for rooms with higher reverberation times.

  1. Evaluating the role of spectral and envelope characteristics in the intelligibility advantage of clear speech

    PubMed Central

    Krause, Jean C.; Braida, Louis D.

    2009-01-01

    In adverse listening conditions, talkers can increase their intelligibility by speaking clearly [Picheny, M.A., et al. (1985). J. Speech Hear. Res. 28, 96–103; Payton, K. L., et al. (1994). J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 95, 1581–1592]. This modified speaking style, known as clear speech, is typically spoken more slowly than conversational speech [Picheny, M. A., et al. (1986). J. Speech Hear. Res. 29, 434–446; Uchanski, R. M., et al. (1996). J. Speech Hear. Res. 39, 494–509]. However, talkers can produce clear speech at normal rates (clear∕normal speech) with training [Krause, J. C., and Braida, L. D. (2002). J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 112, 2165–2172] suggesting that clear speech has some inherent acoustic properties, independent of rate, that contribute to its improved intelligibility. Identifying these acoustic properties could lead to improved signal processing schemes for hearing aids. Two global-level properties of clear∕normal speech that appear likely to be associated with improved intelligibility are increased energy in the 1000–3000-Hz range of long-term spectra and increased modulation depth of low-frequency modulations of the intensity envelope [Krause, J. C., and Braida, L. D. (2004). J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 115, 362–378]. In an attempt to isolate the contributions of these two properties to intelligibility, signal processing transformations were developed to manipulate each of these aspects of conversational speech independently. Results of intelligibility testing with hearing-impaired listeners and normal-hearing listeners in noise suggest that (1) increasing energy between 1000 and 3000 Hz does not fully account for the intelligibility benefit of clear∕normal speech, and (2) simple filtering of the intensity envelope is generally detrimental to intelligibility. While other manipulations of the intensity envelope are required to determine conclusively the role of this factor in intelligibility, it is also likely that additional properties important for

  2. Modified particle filtering algorithm for single acoustic vector sensor DOA tracking.

    PubMed

    Li, Xinbo; Sun, Haixin; Jiang, Liangxu; Shi, Yaowu; Wu, Yue

    2015-01-01

    The conventional direction of arrival (DOA) estimation algorithm with static sources assumption usually estimates the source angles of two adjacent moments independently and the correlation of the moments is not considered. In this article, we focus on the DOA estimation of moving sources and a modified particle filtering (MPF) algorithm is proposed with state space model of single acoustic vector sensor. Although the particle filtering (PF) algorithm has been introduced for acoustic vector sensor applications, it is not suitable for the case that one dimension angle of source is estimated with large deviation, the two dimension angles (pitch angle and azimuth angle) cannot be simultaneously employed to update the state through resampling processing of PF algorithm. To solve the problems mentioned above, the MPF algorithm is proposed in which the state estimation of previous moment is introduced to the particle sampling of present moment to improve the importance function. Moreover, the independent relationship of pitch angle and azimuth angle is considered and the two dimension angles are sampled and evaluated, respectively. Then, the MUSIC spectrum function is used as the "likehood" function of the MPF algorithm, and the modified PF-MUSIC (MPF-MUSIC) algorithm is proposed to improve the root mean square error (RMSE) and the probability of convergence. The theoretical analysis and the simulation results validate the effectiveness and feasibility of the two proposed algorithms.

  3. Modified Particle Filtering Algorithm for Single Acoustic Vector Sensor DOA Tracking

    PubMed Central

    Li, Xinbo; Sun, Haixin; Jiang, Liangxu; Shi, Yaowu; Wu, Yue

    2015-01-01

    The conventional direction of arrival (DOA) estimation algorithm with static sources assumption usually estimates the source angles of two adjacent moments independently and the correlation of the moments is not considered. In this article, we focus on the DOA estimation of moving sources and a modified particle filtering (MPF) algorithm is proposed with state space model of single acoustic vector sensor. Although the particle filtering (PF) algorithm has been introduced for acoustic vector sensor applications, it is not suitable for the case that one dimension angle of source is estimated with large deviation, the two dimension angles (pitch angle and azimuth angle) cannot be simultaneously employed to update the state through resampling processing of PF algorithm. To solve the problems mentioned above, the MPF algorithm is proposed in which the state estimation of previous moment is introduced to the particle sampling of present moment to improve the importance function. Moreover, the independent relationship of pitch angle and azimuth angle is considered and the two dimension angles are sampled and evaluated, respectively. Then, the MUSIC spectrum function is used as the “likehood” function of the MPF algorithm, and the modified PF-MUSIC (MPF-MUSIC) algorithm is proposed to improve the root mean square error (RMSE) and the probability of convergence. The theoretical analysis and the simulation results validate the effectiveness and feasibility of the two proposed algorithms. PMID:26501280

  4. Acoustic and aerodynamic characteristics of Country-Western, Operatic and Broadway singing styles compared to speech

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stone, Robert E.; Cleveland, Thomas F.; Sundberg, P. Johan

    2003-04-01

    Acoustic and aerodynamic measures were used to objectively describe characteristics of Country-Western (C-W) singing in a group of six premier performers in a series of studies and of operatic and Broadway singing in a female subject with professional experience in both styles of singing. For comparison purposes the same measures also were applied to individuals while speaking the same material as sung. Changes in pitch and vocal loudness were investigated for various dependent variables, including subglottal pressure, closed quotient, glottal leakage, H1-H2 difference [the level difference between the two lowest partials of the source spectrum and glottal compliance (the ratio between the air volume displaced in a glottal pulse and the subglottal pressure)], formant frequencies, long-term-average spectrum and vibrato characteristics (in operatic versus Broadway singing). Data from C-W singers suggest they use higher sub-glottal pressures in singing than in speaking. Changes in vocal intensity for doubling sub-glottal pressure is less than reported for classical singers. Several measures were similar for both speaking and C-W singing. Whereas results provide objective specification of differences between operatic and Broadway styles of singing, the latter seems similar to features of conversational speaking style.

  5. Production and perception of listener-oriented clear speech in child language.

    PubMed

    Syrett, Kristen; Kawahara, Shigeto

    2014-11-01

    In this paper, we ask whether children are sensitive to the needs of their interlocutor, and, if so, whether they - like adults - modify acoustic characteristics of their speech as part of a communicative goal. In a production task, preschoolers participated in a word learning task that favored the use of clear speech. Children produced vowels that were longer, more intense, more dispersed in the vowel space, and had a more expanded F0 range than normal speech. Two perception studies with adults showed that these acoustic differences were perceptible and were used to distinguish normal and clear speech styles. We conclude that preschoolers are sensitive to aspects of the speaker-hearer relationship calling upon them to modify their speech in ways that benefit their listener.

  6. Time-Frequency Feature Representation Using Multi-Resolution Texture Analysis and Acoustic Activity Detector for Real-Life Speech Emotion Recognition

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Kun-Ching

    2015-01-01

    The classification of emotional speech is mostly considered in speech-related research on human-computer interaction (HCI). In this paper, the purpose is to present a novel feature extraction based on multi-resolutions texture image information (MRTII). The MRTII feature set is derived from multi-resolution texture analysis for characterization and classification of different emotions in a speech signal. The motivation is that we have to consider emotions have different intensity values in different frequency bands. In terms of human visual perceptual, the texture property on multi-resolution of emotional speech spectrogram should be a good feature set for emotion classification in speech. Furthermore, the multi-resolution analysis on texture can give a clearer discrimination between each emotion than uniform-resolution analysis on texture. In order to provide high accuracy of emotional discrimination especially in real-life, an acoustic activity detection (AAD) algorithm must be applied into the MRTII-based feature extraction. Considering the presence of many blended emotions in real life, in this paper make use of two corpora of naturally-occurring dialogs recorded in real-life call centers. Compared with the traditional Mel-scale Frequency Cepstral Coefficients (MFCC) and the state-of-the-art features, the MRTII features also can improve the correct classification rates of proposed systems among different language databases. Experimental results show that the proposed MRTII-based feature information inspired by human visual perception of the spectrogram image can provide significant classification for real-life emotional recognition in speech. PMID:25594590

  7. Nonlinear propagation of small-amplitude modified electron acoustic solitary waves and double layer in semirelativistic plasmas

    SciTech Connect

    Sah, O.P.; Goswami, K.S. )

    1994-10-01

    Considering an unmagnetized plasma consisting of relativistic drifting electrons and nondrifting thermal ions and by using reductive perturbation method, a usual Korteweg--de Vries (KdV) equation and a generalized form of KdV equation are derived. It is found that while the former governs the dynamics of a small-amplitude rarefactive modified electron acoustic (MEA) soliton, the latter governs the dynamics of a weak compressive modified electron acoustic double layer. The influences of relativistic effect on the propagation of such a soliton and double layer are examined. The relevance of this investigation to space plasma is pointed out.

  8. Formant-frequency variation and informational masking of speech by extraneous formants: evidence against dynamic and speech-specific acoustical constraints.

    PubMed

    Roberts, Brian; Summers, Robert J; Bailey, Peter J

    2014-08-01

    How speech is separated perceptually from other speech remains poorly understood. Recent research indicates that the ability of an extraneous formant to impair intelligibility depends on the variation of its frequency contour. This study explored the effects of manipulating the depth and pattern of that variation. Three formants (F1+F2+F3) constituting synthetic analogues of natural sentences were distributed across the 2 ears, together with a competitor for F2 (F2C) that listeners must reject to optimize recognition (left = F1+F2C; right = F2+F3). The frequency contours of F1 - F3 were each scaled to 50% of their natural depth, with little effect on intelligibility. Competitors were created either by inverting the frequency contour of F2 about its geometric mean (a plausibly speech-like pattern) or using a regular and arbitrary frequency contour (triangle wave, not plausibly speech-like) matched to the average rate and depth of variation for the inverted F2C. Adding a competitor typically reduced intelligibility; this reduction depended on the depth of F2C variation, being greatest for 100%-depth, intermediate for 50%-depth, and least for 0%-depth (constant) F2Cs. This suggests that competitor impact depends on overall depth of frequency variation, not depth relative to that for the target formants. The absence of tuning (i.e., no minimum in intelligibility for the 50% case) suggests that the ability to reject an extraneous formant does not depend on similarity in the depth of formant-frequency variation. Furthermore, triangle-wave competitors were as effective as their more speech-like counterparts, suggesting that the selection of formants from the ensemble also does not depend on speech-specific constraints. PMID:24842068

  9. Early recognition of speech

    PubMed Central

    Remez, Robert E; Thomas, Emily F

    2013-01-01

    Classic research on the perception of speech sought to identify minimal acoustic correlates of each consonant and vowel. In explaining perception, this view designated momentary components of an acoustic spectrum as cues to the recognition of elementary phonemes. This conceptualization of speech perception is untenable given the findings of phonetic sensitivity to modulation independent of the acoustic and auditory form of the carrier. The empirical key is provided by studies of the perceptual organization of speech, a low-level integrative function that finds and follows the sensory effects of speech amid concurrent events. These projects have shown that the perceptual organization of speech is keyed to modulation; fast; unlearned; nonsymbolic; indifferent to short-term auditory properties; and organization requires attention. The ineluctably multisensory nature of speech perception also imposes conditions that distinguish language among cognitive systems. WIREs Cogn Sci 2013, 4:213–223. doi: 10.1002/wcs.1213 PMID:23926454

  10. Speech masking and cancelling and voice obscuration

    DOEpatents

    Holzrichter, John F.

    2013-09-10

    A non-acoustic sensor is used to measure a user's speech and then broadcasts an obscuring acoustic signal diminishing the user's vocal acoustic output intensity and/or distorting the voice sounds making them unintelligible to persons nearby. The non-acoustic sensor is positioned proximate or contacting a user's neck or head skin tissue for sensing speech production information.

  11. Acoustics

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Goodman, Jerry R.; Grosveld, Ferdinand

    2007-01-01

    The acoustics environment in space operations is important to maintain at manageable levels so that the crewperson can remain safe, functional, effective, and reasonably comfortable. High acoustic levels can produce temporary or permanent hearing loss, or cause other physiological symptoms such as auditory pain, headaches, discomfort, strain in the vocal cords, or fatigue. Noise is defined as undesirable sound. Excessive noise may result in psychological effects such as irritability, inability to concentrate, decrease in productivity, annoyance, errors in judgment, and distraction. A noisy environment can also result in the inability to sleep, or sleep well. Elevated noise levels can affect the ability to communicate, understand what is being said, hear what is going on in the environment, degrade crew performance and operations, and create habitability concerns. Superfluous noise emissions can also create the inability to hear alarms or other important auditory cues such as an equipment malfunctioning. Recent space flight experience, evaluations of the requirements in crew habitable areas, and lessons learned (Goodman 2003; Allen and Goodman 2003; Pilkinton 2003; Grosveld et al. 2003) show the importance of maintaining an acceptable acoustics environment. This is best accomplished by having a high-quality set of limits/requirements early in the program, the "designing in" of acoustics in the development of hardware and systems, and by monitoring, testing and verifying the levels to ensure that they are acceptable.

  12. Design Foundations for Content-Rich Acoustic Interfaces: Investigating Audemes as Referential Non-Speech Audio Cues

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ferati, Mexhid Adem

    2012-01-01

    To access interactive systems, blind and visually impaired users can leverage their auditory senses by using non-speech sounds. The current structure of non-speech sounds, however, is geared toward conveying user interface operations (e.g., opening a file) rather than large theme-based information (e.g., a history passage) and, thus, is ill-suited…

  13. Multilevel Analysis in Analyzing Speech Data

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Guddattu, Vasudeva; Krishna, Y.

    2011-01-01

    The speech produced by human vocal tract is a complex acoustic signal, with diverse applications in phonetics, speech synthesis, automatic speech recognition, speaker identification, communication aids, speech pathology, speech perception, machine translation, hearing research, rehabilitation and assessment of communication disorders and many…

  14. A self-organizing neural network architecture for auditory and speech perception with applications to acoustic and other temporal prediction problems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cohen, Michael; Grossberg, Stephen

    1994-09-01

    This project is developing autonomous neural network models for the real-time perception and production of acoustic and speech signals. Our SPINET pitch model was developed to take realtime acoustic input and to simulate the key pitch data. SPINET was embedded into a model for auditory scene analysis, or how the auditory system separates sound sources in environments with multiple sources. The model groups frequency components based on pitch and spatial location cues and resonantly binds them within different streams. The model simulates psychophysical grouping data, such as how an ascending, tone groups with a descending tone even if noise exists at the intersection point, and how a tone before and after a noise burst is perceived to continue through the noise. These resonant streams input to working memories, wherein phonetic percepts adapt to global speech rate. Computer simulations quantitatively generate the experimentally observed category boundary shifts for voiced stop pairs that have the same or different place of articulation, including why the interval to hear a double (geminate) stop is twice as long as that to hear two different stops. This model also uses resonant feedback, here between list categories and working memory.

  15. Effect of Acoustic Spectrographic Instruction on Production of English /i/ and /I/ by Spanish Pre-Service English Teachers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Quintana-Lara, Marcela

    2014-01-01

    This study investigates the effects of Acoustic Spectrographic Instruction on the production of the English phonological contrast /i/ and / I /. Acoustic Spectrographic Instruction is based on the assumption that physical representations of speech sounds and spectrography allow learners to objectively see and modify those non-accurate features in…

  16. Pointing and Naming Are Not Redundant: Children Use Gesture to Modify Nouns before They Modify Nouns in Speech

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cartmill, Erica A.; Hunsicker, Dea; Goldin-Meadow, Susan

    2014-01-01

    Nouns form the first building blocks of children's language but are not consistently modified by other words until around 2.5 years of age. Before then, children often combine their nouns with gestures that indicate the object labeled by the noun, for example, pointing at a bottle while saying "bottle." These gestures are typically…

  17. Acoustics in educational settings. Subcommittee on Acoustics in Educational Settings of the Bioacoustics Standards and Noise Standards Committee American Speech-Language-Hearing Association.

    PubMed

    1995-03-01

    The Americans with Disabilities Act (enacted July 26, 1990) has brought into focus the need for removing barriers and improving accessibility of all buildings and facilities. It is clear that the definition of barrier must be expanded to include not only structural features that limit physical accessibility, but also acoustical barriers that limit access to communication and information. Acoustical interference caused by inappropriate levels of background noise and reverberation presents a barrier to learning and communication in educational settings and school-sponsored extracurricular activities, particularly for students with hearing loss or other language/learning concerns. ASHA has provided these guidelines and acoustical improvement strategies in order to assist communication-related professionals, teachers, school officials, architects, contractors, state education agencies, and others in developing the best possible learning environment for all students. Additional research on both the acoustical characteristics of learning environments and the communication requirements of learners is encouraged. PMID:7696882

  18. Experimental investigation of the effects of the acoustical conditions in a simulated classroom on speech recognition and learning in children a

    PubMed Central

    Valente, Daniel L.; Plevinsky, Hallie M.; Franco, John M.; Heinrichs-Graham, Elizabeth C.; Lewis, Dawna E.

    2012-01-01

    The potential effects of acoustical environment on speech understanding are especially important as children enter school where students’ ability to hear and understand complex verbal information is critical to learning. However, this ability is compromised because of widely varied and unfavorable classroom acoustics. The extent to which unfavorable classroom acoustics affect children’s performance on longer learning tasks is largely unknown as most research has focused on testing children using words, syllables, or sentences as stimuli. In the current study, a simulated classroom environment was used to measure comprehension performance of two classroom learning activities: a discussion and lecture. Comprehension performance was measured for groups of elementary-aged students in one of four environments with varied reverberation times and background noise levels. The reverberation time was either 0.6 or 1.5 s, and the signal-to-noise level was either +10 or +7 dB. Performance is compared to adult subjects as well as to sentence-recognition in the same condition. Significant differences were seen in comprehension scores as a function of age and condition; both increasing background noise and reverberation degraded performance in comprehension tasks compared to minimal differences in measures of sentence-recognition. PMID:22280587

  19. Differential Diagnosis of Severe Speech Disorders Using Speech Gestures

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bahr, Ruth Huntley

    2005-01-01

    The differentiation of childhood apraxia of speech from severe phonological disorder is a common clinical problem. This article reports on an attempt to describe speech errors in children with childhood apraxia of speech on the basis of gesture use and acoustic analyses of articulatory gestures. The focus was on the movement of articulators and…

  20. Effect of audio bandwidth and bit error rate on PCM, ADPCM and LPC speech coding algorithm intelligibility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McKinley, Richard L.; Moore, Thomas J.

    1987-02-01

    The effects of audio bandwidth and bit error rate on speech intelligibility of voice coders in noise are described and quantified. Three different speech coding techniques were investigated, pulse code modulation (PCM), adaptive differential pulse code modulation (ADPCM), and linear predictive coding (LPC). Speech intelligibility was measured in realistic acoustic noise environs by a panel of 10 subjects performing the Modified Rhyme Test. Summary data is presented along with planned future research in optimization of audio bandwidth vs bit error rate tradeoff for best speech intelligibility.

  1. A Comprehensive Noise Robust Speech Parameterization Algorithm Using Wavelet Packet Decomposition-Based Denoising and Speech Feature Representation Techniques

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kotnik, Bojan; Kačič, Zdravko

    2007-12-01

    This paper concerns the problem of automatic speech recognition in noise-intense and adverse environments. The main goal of the proposed work is the definition, implementation, and evaluation of a novel noise robust speech signal parameterization algorithm. The proposed procedure is based on time-frequency speech signal representation using wavelet packet decomposition. A new modified soft thresholding algorithm based on time-frequency adaptive threshold determination was developed to efficiently reduce the level of additive noise in the input noisy speech signal. A two-stage Gaussian mixture model (GMM)-based classifier was developed to perform speech/nonspeech as well as voiced/unvoiced classification. The adaptive topology of the wavelet packet decomposition tree based on voiced/unvoiced detection was introduced to separately analyze voiced and unvoiced segments of the speech signal. The main feature vector consists of a combination of log-root compressed wavelet packet parameters, and autoregressive parameters. The final output feature vector is produced using a two-staged feature vector postprocessing procedure. In the experimental framework, the noisy speech databases Aurora 2 and Aurora 3 were applied together with corresponding standardized acoustical model training/testing procedures. The automatic speech recognition performance achieved using the proposed noise robust speech parameterization procedure was compared to the standardized mel-frequency cepstral coefficient (MFCC) feature extraction procedures ETSI ES 201 108 and ETSI ES 202 050.

  2. Maternal depression and the learning-promoting effects of infant-directed speech: Roles of maternal sensitivity, depression diagnosis, and speech acoustic cues.

    PubMed

    Kaplan, Peter S; Danko, Christina M; Cejka, Anna M; Everhart, Kevin D

    2015-11-01

    The hypothesis that the associative learning-promoting effects of infant-directed speech (IDS) depend on infants' social experience was tested in a conditioned-attention paradigm with a cumulative sample of 4- to 14-month-old infants. Following six forward pairings of a brief IDS segment and a photographic slide of a smiling female face, infants of clinically depressed mothers exhibited evidence of having acquired significantly weaker voice-face associations than infants of non-depressed mothers. Regression analyses revealed that maternal depression was significantly related to infant learning even after demographic correlates of depression, antidepressant medication use, and extent of pitch modulation in maternal IDS had been taken into account. However, after maternal depression had been accounted for, maternal emotional availability, coded by blind raters from separate play interactions, accounted for significant further increments in the proportion of variance accounted for in infant learning scores. Both maternal depression and maternal insensitivity negatively, and additively, predicted poor learning.

  3. Speech research: A report on the status and progress of studies on the nature of speech, instrumentation for its investigation, and practical applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liberman, A. M.

    1980-06-01

    This report (1 April - 30 June) is one of a regular series on the status and progress of studies on the nature of speech, instrumentation for its investigation, and practical applications. Manuscripts cover the following topics: The perceptual equivalance of two acoustic cues for a speech contrast is specific to phonetic perception; Duplex perception of acoustic patterns as speech and nonspeech; Evidence for phonetic processing of cues to place of articulation: Perceived manner affects perceived place; Some articulatory correlates of perceptual isochrony; Effects of utterance continuity on phonetic judgments; Laryngeal adjustments in stuttering: A glottographic observation using a modified reaction paradigm; Missing -ing in reading: Letter detection errors on word endings; Speaking rate; syllable stress, and vowel identity; Sonority and syllabicity: Acoustic correlates of perception, Influence of vocalic context on perception of the (S)-(s) distinction.

  4. Room Acoustics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuttruff, Heinrich; Mommertz, Eckard

    The traditional task of room acoustics is to create or formulate conditions which ensure the best possible propagation of sound in a room from a sound source to a listener. Thus, objects of room acoustics are in particular assembly halls of all kinds, such as auditoria and lecture halls, conference rooms, theaters, concert halls or churches. Already at this point, it has to be pointed out that these conditions essentially depend on the question if speech or music should be transmitted; in the first case, the criterion for transmission quality is good speech intelligibility, in the other case, however, the success of room-acoustical efforts depends on other factors that cannot be quantified that easily, not least it also depends on the hearing habits of the listeners. In any case, absolutely "good acoustics" of a room do not exist.

  5. Is Birdsong More Like Speech or Music?

    PubMed

    Shannon, Robert V

    2016-04-01

    Music and speech share many acoustic cues but not all are equally important. For example, harmonic pitch is essential for music but not for speech. When birds communicate is their song more like speech or music? A new study contrasting pitch and spectral patterns shows that birds perceive their song more like humans perceive speech. PMID:26944220

  6. ON THE NATURE OF SPEECH SCIENCE.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    PETERSON, GORDON E.

    IN THIS ARTICLE THE NATURE OF THE DISCIPLINE OF SPEECH SCIENCE IS CONSIDERED AND THE VARIOUS BASIC AND APPLIED AREAS OF THE DISCIPLINE ARE DISCUSSED. THE BASIC AREAS ENCOMPASS THE VARIOUS PROCESSES OF THE PHYSIOLOGY OF SPEECH PRODUCTION, THE ACOUSTICAL CHARACTERISTICS OF SPEECH, INCLUDING THE SPEECH WAVE TYPES AND THE INFORMATION-BEARING ACOUSTIC…

  7. Two-microphone spatial filtering provides speech reception benefits for cochlear implant users in difficult acoustic environments

    PubMed Central

    Goldsworthy, Raymond L.; Delhorne, Lorraine A.; Desloge, Joseph G.; Braida, Louis D.

    2014-01-01

    This article introduces and provides an assessment of a spatial-filtering algorithm based on two closely-spaced (∼1 cm) microphones in a behind-the-ear shell. The evaluated spatial-filtering algorithm used fast (∼10 ms) temporal-spectral analysis to determine the location of incoming sounds and to enhance sounds arriving from straight ahead of the listener. Speech reception thresholds (SRTs) were measured for eight cochlear implant (CI) users using consonant and vowel materials under three processing conditions: An omni-directional response, a dipole-directional response, and the spatial-filtering algorithm. The background noise condition used three simultaneous time-reversed speech signals as interferers located at 90°, 180°, and 270°. Results indicated that the spatial-filtering algorithm can provide speech reception benefits of 5.8 to 10.7 dB SRT compared to an omni-directional response in a reverberant room with multiple noise sources. Given the observed SRT benefits, coupled with an efficient design, the proposed algorithm is promising as a CI noise-reduction solution. PMID:25096120

  8. Effects of Semantic Context and Feedback on Perceptual Learning of Speech Processed through an Acoustic Simulation of a Cochlear Implant

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Loebach, Jeremy L.; Pisoni, David B.; Svirsky, Mario A.

    2010-01-01

    The effect of feedback and materials on perceptual learning was examined in listeners with normal hearing who were exposed to cochlear implant simulations. Generalization was most robust when feedback paired the spectrally degraded sentences with their written transcriptions, promoting mapping between the degraded signal and its acoustic-phonetic…

  9. Tutorial on architectural acoustics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shaw, Neil; Talaske, Rick; Bistafa, Sylvio

    2002-11-01

    This tutorial is intended to provide an overview of current knowledge and practice in architectural acoustics. Topics covered will include basic concepts and history, acoustics of small rooms (small rooms for speech such as classrooms and meeting rooms, music studios, small critical listening spaces such as home theatres) and the acoustics of large rooms (larger assembly halls, auditoria, and performance halls).

  10. Advances in speech processing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ince, A. Nejat

    1992-10-01

    The field of speech processing is undergoing a rapid growth in terms of both performance and applications and this is fueled by the advances being made in the areas of microelectronics, computation, and algorithm design. The use of voice for civil and military communications is discussed considering advantages and disadvantages including the effects of environmental factors such as acoustic and electrical noise and interference and propagation. The structure of the existing NATO communications network and the evolving Integrated Services Digital Network (ISDN) concept are briefly reviewed to show how they meet the present and future requirements. The paper then deals with the fundamental subject of speech coding and compression. Recent advances in techniques and algorithms for speech coding now permit high quality voice reproduction at remarkably low bit rates. The subject of speech synthesis is next treated where the principle objective is to produce natural quality synthetic speech from unrestricted text input. Speech recognition where the ultimate objective is to produce a machine which would understand conversational speech with unrestricted vocabulary, from essentially any talker, is discussed. Algorithms for speech recognition can be characterized broadly as pattern recognition approaches and acoustic phonetic approaches. To date, the greatest degree of success in speech recognition has been obtained using pattern recognition paradigms. It is for this reason that the paper is concerned primarily with this technique.

  11. Machine Translation from Speech

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schwartz, Richard; Olive, Joseph; McCary, John; Christianson, Caitlin

    This chapter describes approaches for translation from speech. Translation from speech presents two new issues. First, of course, we must recognize the speech in the source language. Although speech recognition has improved considerably over the last three decades, it is still far from being a solved problem. In the best of conditions, when the speech comes from high quality, carefully enunciated speech, on common topics (such as speech read by a trained news broadcaster), the word error rate is typically on the order of 5%. Humans can typically transcribe speech like this with less than 1% disagreement between annotators, so even this best number is still far worse than human performance. However, the task gets much harder when anything changes from this ideal condition. Some of the conditions that cause higher error rate are, if the topic is somewhat unusual, or the speakers are not reading so that their speech is more spontaneous, or if the speakers have an accent or are speaking a dialect, or if there is any acoustic degradation, such as noise or reverberation. In these cases, the word error can increase significantly to 20%, 30%, or higher. Accordingly, most of this chapter discusses techniques for improving speech recognition accuracy, while one section discusses techniques for integrating speech recognition with translation.

  12. Segmenting Words from Natural Speech: Subsegmental Variation in Segmental Cues

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rytting, C. Anton; Brew, Chris; Fosler-Lussier, Eric

    2010-01-01

    Most computational models of word segmentation are trained and tested on transcripts of speech, rather than the speech itself, and assume that speech is converted into a sequence of symbols prior to word segmentation. We present a way of representing speech corpora that avoids this assumption, and preserves acoustic variation present in speech. We…

  13. Cylindrical and spherical dust-ion-acoustic modified Gardner solitons in dusty plasmas with two-temperature superthermal electrons

    SciTech Connect

    Alam, M. S.; Masud, M. M.; Mamun, A. A.

    2013-12-15

    A rigorous theoretical investigation has been performed on the propagation of cylindrical and spherical Gardner solitons (GSs) associated with dust-ion-acoustic (DIA) waves in a dusty plasma consisting of inertial ions, negatively charged immobile dust, and two populations of kappa distributed electrons having two distinct temperatures. The well-known reductive perturbation method has been used to derive the modified Gardner (mG) equation. The basic features (amplitude, width, polarity, etc.) of nonplanar DIA modified Gardner solitons (mGSs) have been thoroughly examined by the numerical analysis of the mG equation. It has been found that the characteristics of the nonplanar DIA mGSs significantly differ from those of planar ones. It has been also observed that kappa distributed electrons with two distinct temperatures significantly modify the basic properties of the DIA solitary waves and that the plasma system under consideration supports both compressive and rarefactive DIA mGSs. The present investigation should play an important role for understanding localized electrostatic disturbances in space and laboratory dusty plasmas where stationary negatively charged dust, inertial ions, and superthermal electrons with two distinct temperatures are omnipresent ingredients.

  14. Speech Analysis Systems: An Evaluation.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Read, Charles; And Others

    1992-01-01

    Performance characteristics are reviewed for seven computerized systems marketed for acoustic speech analysis: CSpeech, CSRE, ILS-PC, Kay Elemetrics model 550 Sona-Graph, MacSpeech Lab II, MSL, and Signalyze. Characteristics reviewed include system components, basic capabilities, documentation, user interface, data formats and journaling, and…

  15. Automatic speech recognition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Espy-Wilson, Carol

    2005-04-01

    Great strides have been made in the development of automatic speech recognition (ASR) technology over the past thirty years. Most of this effort has been centered around the extension and improvement of Hidden Markov Model (HMM) approaches to ASR. Current commercially-available and industry systems based on HMMs can perform well for certain situational tasks that restrict variability such as phone dialing or limited voice commands. However, the holy grail of ASR systems is performance comparable to humans-in other words, the ability to automatically transcribe unrestricted conversational speech spoken by an infinite number of speakers under varying acoustic environments. This goal is far from being reached. Key to the success of ASR is effective modeling of variability in the speech signal. This tutorial will review the basics of ASR and the various ways in which our current knowledge of speech production, speech perception and prosody can be exploited to improve robustness at every level of the system.

  16. Contributions of speech science to the technology of man-machine voice interactions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lea, Wayne A.

    1977-01-01

    Research in speech understanding was reviewed. Plans which include prosodics research, phonological rules for speech understanding systems, and continued interdisciplinary phonetics research are discussed. Improved acoustic phonetic analysis capabilities in speech recognizers are suggested.

  17. The Effectiveness of Clear Speech as a Masker

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Calandruccio, Lauren; Van Engen, Kristin; Dhar, Sumitrajit; Bradlow, Ann R.

    2010-01-01

    Purpose: It is established that speaking clearly is an effective means of enhancing intelligibility. Because any signal-processing scheme modeled after known acoustic-phonetic features of clear speech will likely affect both target and competing speech, it is important to understand how speech recognition is affected when a competing speech signal…

  18. Speech spectrogram expert

    SciTech Connect

    Johannsen, J.; Macallister, J.; Michalek, T.; Ross, S.

    1983-01-01

    Various authors have pointed out that humans can become quite adept at deriving phonetic transcriptions from speech spectrograms (as good as 90percent accuracy at the phoneme level). The authors describe an expert system which attempts to simulate this performance. The speech spectrogram expert (spex) is actually a society made up of three experts: a 2-dimensional vision expert, an acoustic-phonetic expert, and a phonetics expert. The visual reasoning expert finds important visual features of the spectrogram. The acoustic-phonetic expert reasons about how visual features relates to phonemes, and about how phonemes change visually in different contexts. The phonetics expert reasons about allowable phoneme sequences and transformations, and deduces an english spelling for phoneme strings. The speech spectrogram expert is highly interactive, allowing users to investigate hypotheses and edit rules. 10 references.

  19. The Acquisition of Verbal Communication Skills by Severely Hearing-Impaired Children through the Modified Cued Speech-Phonetic Alphabet Method.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Duffy, John K.

    The paper describes the potential of cued speech to provide verbal language and intelligible speech to severely hearing impaired students. The approach, which combines auditory-visual-oral and manual cues, is designed as a visual supplement to normal speech. The paper traces the development of cued speech and discusses modifications made to the R.…

  20. Inverse Material Identification in Coupled Acoustic-Structure Interaction using a Modified Error in Constitutive Equation Functional

    PubMed Central

    Warner, James E.; Diaz, Manuel I.; Aquino, Wilkins; Bonnet, Marc

    2014-01-01

    This work focuses on the identification of heterogeneous linear elastic moduli in the context of frequency-domain, coupled acoustic-structure interaction (ASI), using either solid displacement or fluid pressure measurement data. The approach postulates the inverse problem as an optimization problem where the solution is obtained by minimizing a modified error in constitutive equation (MECE) functional. The latter measures the discrepancy in the constitutive equations that connect kinematically admissible strains and dynamically admissible stresses, while incorporating the measurement data as additional quadratic error terms. We demonstrate two strategies for selecting the MECE weighting coefficient to produce regularized solutions to the ill-posed identification problem: 1) the discrepancy principle of Morozov, and 2) an error-balance approach that selects the weight parameter as the minimizer of another functional involving the ECE and the data misfit. Numerical results demonstrate that the proposed methodology can successfully recover elastic parameters in 2D and 3D ASI systems from response measurements taken in either the solid or fluid subdomains. Furthermore, both regularization strategies are shown to produce accurate reconstructions when the measurement data is polluted with noise. The discrepancy principle is shown to produce nearly optimal solutions, while the error-balance approach, although not optimal, remains effective and does not need a priori information on the noise level. PMID:25339790

  1. Inverse material identification in coupled acoustic-structure interaction using a modified error in constitutive equation functional

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Warner, James E.; Diaz, Manuel I.; Aquino, Wilkins; Bonnet, Marc

    2014-09-01

    This work focuses on the identification of heterogeneous linear elastic moduli in the context of frequency-domain, coupled acoustic-structure interaction (ASI), using either solid displacement or fluid pressure measurement data. The approach postulates the inverse problem as an optimization problem where the solution is obtained by minimizing a modified error in constitutive equation (MECE) functional. The latter measures the discrepancy in the constitutive equations that connect kinematically admissible strains and dynamically admissible stresses, while incorporating the measurement data as additional quadratic error terms. We demonstrate two strategies for selecting the MECE weighting coefficient to produce regularized solutions to the ill-posed identification problem: 1) the discrepancy principle of Morozov, and 2) an error-balance approach that selects the weight parameter as the minimizer of another functional involving the ECE and the data misfit. Numerical results demonstrate that the proposed methodology can successfully recover elastic parameters in 2D and 3D ASI systems from response measurements taken in either the solid or fluid subdomains. Furthermore, both regularization strategies are shown to produce accurate reconstructions when the measurement data is polluted with noise. The discrepancy principle is shown to produce nearly optimal solutions, while the error-balance approach, although not optimal, remains effective and does not need a priori information on the noise level.

  2. A modified beam-to-earth transformation to measure short-wavelength internal waves with an acoustic Doppler current profiler

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Scotti, A.; Butman, B.; Beardsley, R.C.; Alexander, P.S.; Anderson, S.

    2005-01-01

    The algorithm used to transform velocity signals from beam coordinates to earth coordinates in an acoustic Doppler current profiler (ADCP) relies on the assumption that the currents are uniform over the horizontal distance separating the beams. This condition may be violated by (nonlinear) internal waves, which can have wavelengths as small as 100-200 m. In this case, the standard algorithm combines velocities measured at different phases of a wave and produces horizontal velocities that increasingly differ from true velocities with distance from the ADCP. Observations made in Massachusetts Bay show that currents measured with a bottom-mounted upward-looking ADCP during periods when short-wavelength internal waves are present differ significantly from currents measured by point current meters, except very close to the instrument. These periods are flagged with high error velocities by the standard ADCP algorithm. In this paper measurements from the four spatially diverging beams and the backscatter intensity signal are used to calculate the propagation direction and celerity of the internal waves. Once this information is known, a modified beam-to-earth transformation that combines appropriately lagged beam measurements can be used to obtain current estimates in earth coordinates that compare well with pointwise measurements. ?? 2005 American Meteorological Society.

  3. Speech prosody in cerebellar ataxia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Casper, Maureen

    The present study sought an acoustic signature for the speech disturbance recognized in cerebellar degeneration. Magnetic resonance imaging was used for a radiological rating of cerebellar involvement in six cerebellar ataxic dysarthric speakers. Acoustic measures of the [pap] syllables in contrastive prosodic conditions and of normal vs. brain-damaged patients were used to further our understanding both of the speech degeneration that accompanies cerebellar pathology and of speech motor control and movement in general. Pair-wise comparisons of the prosodic conditions within the normal group showed statistically significant differences for four prosodic contrasts. For three of the four contrasts analyzed, the normal speakers showed both longer durations and higher formant and fundamental frequency values in the more prominent first condition of the contrast. The acoustic measures of the normal prosodic contrast values were then used as a model to measure the degree of speech deterioration for individual cerebellar subjects. This estimate of speech deterioration as determined by individual differences between cerebellar and normal subjects' acoustic values of the four prosodic contrasts was used in correlation analyses with MRI ratings. Moderate correlations between speech deterioration and cerebellar atrophy were found in the measures of syllable duration and f0. A strong negative correlation was found for F1. Moreover, the normal model presented by these acoustic data allows for a description of the flexibility of task- oriented behavior in normal speech motor control. These data challenge spatio-temporal theory which explains movement as an artifact of time wherein longer durations predict more extreme movements and give further evidence for gestural internal dynamics of movement in which time emerges from articulatory events rather than dictating those events. This model provides a sensitive index of cerebellar pathology with quantitative acoustic

  4. Discriminating between auditory and motor cortical responses to speech and non-speech mouth sounds

    PubMed Central

    Agnew, Z.K.; McGettigan, C.; Scott, S.K.

    2012-01-01

    Several perspectives on speech perception posit a central role for the representation of articulations in speech comprehension, supported by evidence for premotor activation when participants listen to speech. However no experiments have directly tested whether motor responses mirror the profile of selective auditory cortical responses to native speech sounds, or whether motor and auditory areas respond in different ways to sounds. We used fMRI to investigate cortical responses to speech and non-speech mouth (ingressive click) sounds. Speech sounds activated bilateral superior temporal gyri more than other sounds, a profile not seen in motor and premotor cortices. These results suggest that there are qualitative differences in the ways that temporal and motor areas are activated by speech and click sounds: anterior temporal lobe areas are sensitive to the acoustic/phonetic properties while motor responses may show more generalised responses to the acoustic stimuli. PMID:21812557

  5. Production and perception of clear speech

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bradlow, Ann R.

    2003-04-01

    When a talker believes that the listener is likely to have speech perception difficulties due to a hearing loss, background noise, or a different native language, she or he will typically adopt a clear speaking style. Previous research has established that, with a simple set of instructions to the talker, ``clear speech'' can be produced by most talkers under laboratory recording conditions. Furthermore, there is reliable evidence that adult listeners with either impaired or normal hearing typically find clear speech more intelligible than conversational speech. Since clear speech production involves listener-oriented articulatory adjustments, a careful examination of the acoustic-phonetic and perceptual consequences of the conversational-to-clear speech transformation can serve as an effective window into talker- and listener-related forces in speech communication. Furthermore, clear speech research has considerable potential for the development of speech enhancement techniques. After reviewing previous and current work on the acoustic properties of clear versus conversational speech, this talk will present recent data from a cross-linguistic study of vowel production in clear speech and a cross-population study of clear speech perception. Findings from these studies contribute to an evolving view of clear speech production and perception as reflecting both universal, auditory and language-specific, phonological contrast enhancement features.

  6. An assessment of computer model techniques to predict quantitative and qualitative measures of speech perception in university classrooms for varying room sizes and noise levels

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Hyeong-Seok

    The objective of this dissertation was to assess the use of computer modeling techniques to predict quantitative and qualitative measures of speech perception in classrooms under realistic conditions of background noise and reverberation. Secondary objectives included (1) finding relationships among acoustical measurements made in actual classrooms and in the computer models of the actual rooms as a prediction tool of 15 acoustic parameters at the design stage of projects and (2) finding relationships among speech perception scores and 15 acoustic parameters to determine the best predictors of speech perception in actual classroom conditions. Fifteen types of acoustical measurements were made in three actual classrooms with reverberation times of 0.5, 1.3, and 5.1 seconds. Speech perception tests using a Modified Rhyme Test list were also given to 22 subject in each room with five noise conditions of signal-to-noise ratios of 31, 24, 15, 0, -10. Computer models of the rooms were constructed using a commercially available computer model software program. The 15 acoustical measurements were made at 6 or 9 locations in the model rooms. Impulse responses obtained in the computer models of the rooms were convolved with the anechoically recorded speech tests used in the full size rooms to produce a compact disk with the MRT lists with the acoustical response of the computer model rooms. Speech perception tests using this as source material were given to the subjects over loudspeaker in an acoustic test booth. The results of the study showed correlations (R2) of between acoustical measures made in the full size classrooms and the computer models of the classrooms of 0.92 to 0.99 with standard errors of 0.033 to 7.311. Comparisons between speech perception scores tested in the rooms and acoustical measurements made in the rooms and in the computer models of the classrooms showed that the measures have similar prediction accuracy with other studies in the literatures. The

  7. Localization of Sublexical Speech Perception Components

    PubMed Central

    Turkeltaub, Peter E; Coslett, H. Branch

    2010-01-01

    Models of speech perception are in general agreement with respect to the major cortical regions involved, but lack precision with regard to localization and lateralization of processing units. To refine these models we conducted two Activation Likelihood Estimation (ALE) meta-analyses of the neuroimaging literature on sublexical speech perception. Based on foci reported in 23 fMRI experiments, we identified significant activation likelihoods in left and right superior temporal cortex and the left posterior middle frontal gyrus. Subanalyses examining phonetic and phonological processes revealed only left mid-posterior superior temporal sulcus activation likelihood. A lateralization analysis demonstrated temporal lobe left lateralization in terms of magnitude, extent, and consistency of activity. Experiments requiring explicit attention to phonology drove this lateralization. An ALE analysis of eight fMRI studies on categorical phoneme perception revealed significant activation likelihood in the left supramarginal gyrus and angular gyrus. These results are consistent with a speech processing network in which the bilateral superior temporal cortices perform acoustic analysis of speech and nonspeech auditory stimuli, the left mid-posterior superior temporal sulcus performs phonetic and phonological analysis, and the left inferior parietal lobule is involved in detection of differences between phoneme categories. These results modify current speech perception models in three ways: 1) specifying the most likely locations of dorsal stream processing units, 2) clarifying that phonetic and phonological superior temporal sulcus processing is left lateralized and localized to the mid-posterior portion, and 3) suggesting that both the supramarginal gyrus and angular gyrus may be involved in phoneme discrimination. PMID:20413149

  8. Speech Synthesis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dutoit, Thierry; Bozkurt, Baris

    Text-to-speech (TTS) synthesis is the art of designing talking machines. It is often seen by engineers as an easy task, compared to speech recognition.1 It is true, indeed, that it is easier to create a bad, first trial text-to-speech (TTS) system than to design a rudimentary speech recognizer.

  9. Time-forward speech intelligibility in time-reversed rooms

    PubMed Central

    Longworth-Reed, Laricia; Brandewie, Eugene; Zahorik, Pavel

    2009-01-01

    The effects of time-reversed room acoustics on word recognition abilities were examined using virtual auditory space techniques, which allowed for temporal manipulation of the room acoustics independent of the speech source signals. Two acoustical conditions were tested: one in which room acoustics were simulated in a realistic time-forward fashion and one in which the room acoustics were reversed in time, causing reverberation and acoustic reflections to precede the direct-path energy. Significant decreases in speech intelligibility—from 89% on average to less than 25%—were observed between the time-forward and time-reversed rooms. This result is not predictable using standard methods for estimating speech intelligibility based on the modulation transfer function of the room. It may instead be due to increased degradation of onset information in the speech signals when room acoustics are time-reversed. PMID:19173377

  10. Perception of acoustic scale and size in musical instrument sounds

    PubMed Central

    van Dinther, Ralph; Patterson, Roy D.

    2010-01-01

    There is size information in natural sounds. For example, as humans grow in height, their vocal tracts increase in length, producing a predictable decrease in the formant frequencies of speech sounds. Recent studies have shown that listeners can make fine discriminations about which of two speakers has the longer vocal tract, supporting the view that the auditory system discriminates changes on the acoustic-scale dimension. Listeners can also recognize vowels scaled well beyond the range of vocal tracts normally experienced, indicating that perception is robust to changes in acoustic scale. This paper reports two perceptual experiments designed to extend research on acoustic scale and size perception to the domain of musical sounds: The first study shows that listeners can discriminate the scale of musical instrument sounds reliably, although not quite as well as for voices. The second experiment shows that listeners can recognize the family of an instrument sound which has been modified in pitch and scale beyond the range of normal experience. We conclude that processing of acoustic scale in music perception is very similar to processing of acoustic scale in speech perception. PMID:17069313

  11. Common neural substrates support speech and non-speech vocal tract gestures.

    PubMed

    Chang, Soo-Eun; Kenney, Mary Kay; Loucks, Torrey M J; Poletto, Christopher J; Ludlow, Christy L

    2009-08-01

    The issue of whether speech is supported by the same neural substrates as non-speech vocal tract gestures has been contentious. In this fMRI study we tested whether producing non-speech vocal tract gestures in humans shares the same functional neuroanatomy as non-sense speech syllables. Production of non-speech vocal tract gestures, devoid of phonological content but similar to speech in that they had familiar acoustic and somatosensory targets, was compared to the production of speech syllables without meaning. Brain activation related to overt production was captured with BOLD fMRI using a sparse sampling design for both conditions. Speech and non-speech were compared using voxel-wise whole brain analyses, and ROI analyses focused on frontal and temporoparietal structures previously reported to support speech production. Results showed substantial activation overlap between speech and non-speech function in regions. Although non-speech gesture production showed greater extent and amplitude of activation in the regions examined, both speech and non-speech showed comparable left laterality in activation for both target perception and production. These findings posit a more general role of the previously proposed "auditory dorsal stream" in the left hemisphere--to support the production of vocal tract gestures that are not limited to speech processing.

  12. Interactions between distal speech rate, linguistic knowledge, and speech environment.

    PubMed

    Morrill, Tuuli; Baese-Berk, Melissa; Heffner, Christopher; Dilley, Laura

    2015-10-01

    During lexical access, listeners use both signal-based and knowledge-based cues, and information from the linguistic context can affect the perception of acoustic speech information. Recent findings suggest that the various cues used in lexical access are implemented with flexibility and may be affected by information from the larger speech context. We conducted 2 experiments to examine effects of a signal-based cue (distal speech rate) and a knowledge-based cue (linguistic structure) on lexical perception. In Experiment 1, we manipulated distal speech rate in utterances where an acoustically ambiguous critical word was either obligatory for the utterance to be syntactically well formed (e.g., Conner knew that bread and butter (are) both in the pantry) or optional (e.g., Don must see the harbor (or) boats). In Experiment 2, we examined identical target utterances as in Experiment 1 but changed the distribution of linguistic structures in the fillers. The results of the 2 experiments demonstrate that speech rate and linguistic knowledge about critical word obligatoriness can both influence speech perception. In addition, it is possible to alter the strength of a signal-based cue by changing information in the speech environment. These results provide support for models of word segmentation that include flexible weighting of signal-based and knowledge-based cues.

  13. Speech-on-speech masking with variable access to the linguistic content of the masker speech.

    PubMed

    Calandruccio, Lauren; Dhar, Sumitrajit; Bradlow, Ann R

    2010-08-01

    It has been reported that listeners can benefit from a release in masking when the masker speech is spoken in a language that differs from the target speech compared to when the target and masker speech are spoken in the same language [Freyman, R. L. et al. (1999). J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 106, 3578-3588; Van Engen, K., and Bradlow, A. (2007), J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 121, 519-526]. It is unclear whether listeners benefit from this release in masking due to the lack of linguistic interference of the masker speech, from acoustic and phonetic differences between the target and masker languages, or a combination of these differences. In the following series of experiments, listeners' sentence recognition was evaluated using speech and noise maskers that varied in the amount of linguistic content, including native-English, Mandarin-accented English, and Mandarin speech. Results from three experiments indicated that the majority of differences observed between the linguistic maskers could be explained by spectral differences between the masker conditions. However, when the recognition task increased in difficulty, i.e., at a more challenging signal-to-noise ratio, a greater decrease in performance was observed for the maskers with more linguistically relevant information than what could be explained by spectral differences alone. PMID:20707455

  14. Robust cortical encoding of slow temporal modulations of speech.

    PubMed

    Ding, Nai; Simon, Jonathan Z

    2013-01-01

    This study investigates the neural representation of speech in complex listening environments. Subjects listened to a narrated story, masked by either another speech stream or by stationary noise. Neural recordings were made using magnetoencephalography (MEG), which can measure cortical activity synchronized to the temporal envelope of speech. When two speech streams are presented simultaneously, cortical activity is predominantly synchronized to the speech stream the listener attends to, even if the unattended, competing-speech stream is more intense (up to 8 dB). When speech is presented together with spectrally matched stationary noise, cortical activity remains precisely synchronized to the temporal envelope of speech until the noise is 9 dB more intense. Critically, the precision of the neural synchronization to speech predicts subjectively rated speech intelligibility in noise. Further analysis reveals that it is longer-latency (∼100 ms) neural responses, but not shorter-latency (∼50 ms) neural responses, that show selectivity to the attended speech and invariance to background noise. This indicates a processing transition, from encoding the acoustic scene to encoding the behaviorally important auditory object, in auditory cortex. In sum, it is demonstrated that neural synchronization to the speech envelope is robust to acoustic interference, whether speech or noise, and therefore provides a strong candidate for the neural basis of acoustic-background invariant speech recognition. PMID:23716243

  15. Voice Modulations in German Ironic Speech

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Scharrer, Lisa; Christmann, Ursula; Knoll, Monja

    2011-01-01

    Previous research has shown that in different languages ironic speech is acoustically modulated compared to literal speech, and these modulations are assumed to aid the listener in the comprehension process by acting as cues that mark utterances as ironic. The present study was conducted to identify paraverbal features of German "ironic criticism"…

  16. Acoustic and Perceptual Correlates of Stress in Nonwords Produced by Children with Suspected Developmental Apraxia of Speech and Children with Phonological Disorder.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Munson, Benjamin; Bjorum, Elissa M.; Windsor, Jennifer

    2003-01-01

    This study examined whether accuracy in producing linguistic stress reliably distinguished between five children with suspected developmental apraxia of speech (sDAS) and five children with phonological disorder (PD). No group differences in the production of stress were found; however, listeners judged that nonword repetitions of the children…

  17. Speech for the Deaf Child: Knowledge and Use.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Connor, Leo E., Ed.

    Presented is a collection of 16 papers on speech development, handicaps, teaching methods, and educational trends for the aurally handicapped child. Arthur Boothroyd relates acoustic phonetics to speech teaching, and Jean Utley Lehman investigates a scheme of linguistic organization. Differences in speech production by deaf and normal hearing…

  18. Breathing-Impaired Speech after Brain Haemorrhage: A Case Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Heselwood, Barry

    2007-01-01

    Results are presented from an auditory and acoustic analysis of the speech of an adult male with impaired prosody and articulation due to brain haemorrhage. They show marked effects on phonation, speech rate and articulator velocity, and a speech rhythm disrupted by "intrusive" stresses. These effects are discussed in relation to the speaker's…

  19. Nonlinear Statistical Modeling of Speech

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Srinivasan, S.; Ma, T.; May, D.; Lazarou, G.; Picone, J.

    2009-12-01

    Contemporary approaches to speech and speaker recognition decompose the problem into four components: feature extraction, acoustic modeling, language modeling and search. Statistical signal processing is an integral part of each of these components, and Bayes Rule is used to merge these components into a single optimal choice. Acoustic models typically use hidden Markov models based on Gaussian mixture models for state output probabilities. This popular approach suffers from an inherent assumption of linearity in speech signal dynamics. Language models often employ a variety of maximum entropy techniques, but can employ many of the same statistical techniques used for acoustic models. In this paper, we focus on introducing nonlinear statistical models to the feature extraction and acoustic modeling problems as a first step towards speech and speaker recognition systems based on notions of chaos and strange attractors. Our goal in this work is to improve the generalization and robustness properties of a speech recognition system. Three nonlinear invariants are proposed for feature extraction: Lyapunov exponents, correlation fractal dimension, and correlation entropy. We demonstrate an 11% relative improvement on speech recorded under noise-free conditions, but show a comparable degradation occurs for mismatched training conditions on noisy speech. We conjecture that the degradation is due to difficulties in estimating invariants reliably from noisy data. To circumvent these problems, we introduce two dynamic models to the acoustic modeling problem: (1) a linear dynamic model (LDM) that uses a state space-like formulation to explicitly model the evolution of hidden states using an autoregressive process, and (2) a data-dependent mixture of autoregressive (MixAR) models. Results show that LDM and MixAR models can achieve comparable performance with HMM systems while using significantly fewer parameters. Currently we are developing Bayesian parameter estimation and

  20. Speech Development

    MedlinePlus

    ... W View More… Donate Donor Spotlight Fundraising Ideas Vehicle Donation Volunteer Efforts Speech Development skip to submenu ... Lip and Palate . Bzoch (1997). Cleft Palate Speech Management: A Multidisciplinary Approach . Shprintzen, Bardach (1995). Cleft Palate: ...

  1. Speech Problems

    MedlinePlus

    ... a person's ability to speak clearly. Some Common Speech Disorders Stuttering is a problem that interferes with fluent ... is a language disorder, while stuttering is a speech disorder. A person who stutters has trouble getting out ...

  2. Classroom Acoustics: Understanding Barriers to Learning.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Crandell, Carl C., Ed.; Smaldino, Joseph J., Ed.

    2001-01-01

    This booklet explores classroom acoustics and their importance on the learning potential of children with hearing loss and related disabilities. The booklet also reviews research on classroom acoustics and the need for the development of classroom acoustics standards. Chapters examine: 1) a speech-perception model demonstrating the linkage between…

  3. Perception of Speech Reflects Optimal Use of Probabilistic Speech Cues

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Clayards, Meghan; Tanenhaus, Michael K.; Aslin, Richard N.; Jacobs, Robert A.

    2008-01-01

    Listeners are exquisitely sensitive to fine-grained acoustic detail within phonetic categories for sounds and words. Here we show that this sensitivity is optimal given the probabilistic nature of speech cues. We manipulated the probability distribution of one probabilistic cue, voice onset time (VOT), which differentiates word initial labial…

  4. Assessing Toddlers’ Speech-Sound Discrimination

    PubMed Central

    Holt, Rachael Frush; Lalonde, Kaylah

    2012-01-01

    Objective Valid and reliable methods for assessing speech perception in toddlers are lacking in the field, leading to conspicuous gaps in understanding how speech perception develops and limited clinical tools for assessing sensory aid benefit in toddlers. The objective of this investigation was to evaluate speech-sound discrimination in toddlers using modifications to the Change/No-Change procedure1. Methods Normal-hearing 2- and 3-year-olds’ discrimination of acoustically dissimilar (“easy”) and similar (“hard”) speech-sound contrasts were evaluated in a combined repeated measures and factorial design. Performance was measured in d’. Effects of contrast difficulty and age were examined, as was test-retest reliability, using repeated measures ANOVAs, planned post-hoc tests, and correlation analyses. Results The easy contrast (M=2.53) was discriminated better than the hard contrast (M=1.72) across all ages (p < .0001). The oldest group of children (M=3.13) discriminated the contrasts better than youngest (M=1.04; p < .0001) and the mid-age children (M=2.20; p = .037), who in turn discriminated the contrasts better than the youngest children (p = .010). Test-retest reliability was excellent (r = .886, p < .0001). Almost 90% of the children met the teaching criterion. The vast majority demonstrated the ability to be tested with the modified procedure and discriminated the contrasts. The few who did not were 2.5 years of age and younger. Conclusions The modifications implemented resulted, at least preliminarily, in a procedure that is reliable and sensitive to contrast difficulty and age in this young group of children, suggesting that these modifications are appropriate for this age group. With further development, the procedure holds promise for use in clinical populations who are believed to have core deficits in rapid phonological encoding, such as children with hearing loss or specific language impairment, children who are struggling to read, and

  5. Results of tests performed on the Acoustic Quiet Flow Facility Three-Dimensional Model Tunnel: Report on the Modified D.S.M.A. Design

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Barna, P. S.

    1996-01-01

    Numerous tests were performed on the original Acoustic Quiet Flow Facility Three-Dimensional Model Tunnel, scaled down from the full-scale plans. Results of tests performed on the original scale model tunnel were reported in April 1995, which clearly showed that this model was lacking in performance. Subsequently this scale model was modified to attempt to possibly improve the tunnel performance. The modifications included: (a) redesigned diffuser; (b) addition of a collector; (c) addition of a Nozzle-Diffuser; (d) changes in location of vent-air. Tests performed on the modified tunnel showed a marked improvement in performance amounting to a nominal increase of pressure recovery in the diffuser from 34 percent to 54 percent. Results obtained in the tests have wider application. They may also be applied to other tunnels operating with an open test section not necessarily having similar geometry as the model under consideration.

  6. Embedding speech into virtual realities

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bohn, Christian-Arved; Krueger, Wolfgang

    1993-01-01

    In this work a speaker-independent speech recognition system is presented, which is suitable for implementation in Virtual Reality applications. The use of an artificial neural network in connection with a special compression of the acoustic input leads to a system, which is robust, fast, easy to use and needs no additional hardware, beside a common VR-equipment.

  7. Prosodic Contrasts in Ironic Speech

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bryant, Gregory A.

    2010-01-01

    Prosodic features in spontaneous speech help disambiguate implied meaning not explicit in linguistic surface structure, but little research has examined how these signals manifest themselves in real conversations. Spontaneously produced verbal irony utterances generated between familiar speakers in conversational dyads were acoustically analyzed…

  8. Intelligibility of laryngectomees' substitute speech: automatic speech recognition and subjective rating.

    PubMed

    Schuster, Maria; Haderlein, Tino; Nöth, Elmar; Lohscheller, Jörg; Eysholdt, Ulrich; Rosanowski, Frank

    2006-02-01

    Substitute speech after laryngectomy is characterized by restricted aero-acoustic properties in comparison with laryngeal speech and has therefore lower intelligibility. Until now, an objective means to determine and quantify the intelligibility has not existed, although the intelligibility can serve as a global outcome parameter of voice restoration after laryngectomy. An automatic speech recognition system was applied on recordings of a standard text read by 18 German male laryngectomees with tracheoesophageal substitute speech. The system was trained with normal laryngeal speakers and not adapted to severely disturbed voices. Substitute speech was compared to laryngeal speech of a control group. Subjective evaluation of intelligibility was performed by a panel of five experts and compared to automatic speech evaluation. Substitute speech showed lower syllables/s and lower word accuracy than laryngeal speech. Automatic speech recognition for substitute speech yielded word accuracy between 10.0 and 50% (28.7+/-12.1%) with sufficient discrimination. It complied with experts' subjective evaluations of intelligibility. The multi-rater kappa of the experts alone did not differ from the multi-rater kappa of experts and the recognizer. Automatic speech recognition serves as a good means to objectify and quantify global speech outcome of laryngectomees. For clinical use, the speech recognition system will be adapted to disturbed voices and can also be applied in other languages. PMID:16001246

  9. Voice modulations in German ironic speech.

    PubMed

    Scharrer, Lisa; Christmann, Ursula; Knoll, Monja

    2011-12-01

    Previous research has shown that in different languages ironic speech is acoustically modulated compared to literal speech,and these modulations are assumed to aid the listener in the comprehension process by acting as cues that mark utterances as ironic. The present study was conducted to identify paraverbal features of German 'ironic criticism' that may possibly act as irony cues by comparing acoustic measures of ironic and literal speech. For this purpose, samples of scripted ironic and literal target utterances produced by 14 female speakers were recorded and acoustically analyzed. Results showed that in contrast to literal remarks, ironic criticism was characterized by a decreased mean fundamental frequency (F0), raised energy levels and increased vowel duration, whereas F0-contours differed only marginally between both speech types. Furthermore, we found ironic speech to be characterized by vowel hyperarticulation,an acoustic feature which has so far not been considered as a possible irony cue. Contrary to our expectations, voice modulations in ironic speech were applied independently from the availability of additional, visual irony cues.The results are discussed in light of previous findings on acoustic features of irony yielded for other languages.

  10. Fifty years of progress in acoustic phonetics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stevens, Kenneth N.

    2004-10-01

    Three events that occurred 50 or 60 years ago shaped the study of acoustic phonetics, and in the following few decades these events influenced research and applications in speech disorders, speech development, speech synthesis, speech recognition, and other subareas in speech communication. These events were: (1) the source-filter theory of speech production (Chiba and Kajiyama; Fant); (2) the development of the sound spectrograph and its interpretation (Potter, Kopp, and Green; Joos); and (3) the birth of research that related distinctive features to acoustic patterns (Jakobson, Fant, and Halle). Following these events there has been systematic exploration of the articulatory, acoustic, and perceptual bases of phonological categories, and some quantification of the sources of variability in the transformation of this phonological representation of speech into its acoustic manifestations. This effort has been enhanced by studies of how children acquire language in spite of this variability and by research on speech disorders. Gaps in our knowledge of this inherent variability in speech have limited the directions of applications such as synthesis and recognition of speech, and have led to the implementation of data-driven techniques rather than theoretical principles. Some examples of advances in our knowledge, and limitations of this knowledge, are reviewed.

  11. Virtual acoustics displays

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wenzel, Elizabeth M.; Fisher, Scott S.; Stone, Philip K.; Foster, Scott H.

    1991-01-01

    The real time acoustic display capabilities are described which were developed for the Virtual Environment Workstation (VIEW) Project at NASA-Ames. The acoustic display is capable of generating localized acoustic cues in real time over headphones. An auditory symbology, a related collection of representational auditory 'objects' or 'icons', can be designed using ACE (Auditory Cue Editor), which links both discrete and continuously varying acoustic parameters with information or events in the display. During a given display scenario, the symbology can be dynamically coordinated in real time with 3-D visual objects, speech, and gestural displays. The types of displays feasible with the system range from simple warnings and alarms to the acoustic representation of multidimensional data or events.

  12. Age-related changes to spectral voice characteristics affect judgments of prosodic, segmental, and talker attributes for child and adult speech

    PubMed Central

    Dilley, Laura C.; Wieland, Elizabeth A.; Gamache, Jessica L.; McAuley, J. Devin; Redford, Melissa A.

    2013-01-01

    Purpose As children mature, changes in voice spectral characteristics covary with changes in speech, language, and behavior. Spectral characteristics were manipulated to alter the perceived ages of talkers’ voices while leaving critical acoustic-prosodic correlates intact, to determine whether perceived age differences were associated with differences in judgments of prosodic, segmental, and talker attributes. Method Speech was modified by lowering formants and fundamental frequency, for 5-year-old children’s utterances, or raising them, for adult caregivers’ utterances. Next, participants differing in awareness of the manipulation (Exp. 1a) or amount of speech-language training (Exp. 1b) made judgments of prosodic, segmental, and talker attributes. Exp. 2 investigated the effects of spectral modification on intelligibility. Finally, in Exp. 3 trained analysts used formal prosody coding to assess prosodic characteristics of spectrally-modified and unmodified speech. Results Differences in perceived age were associated with differences in ratings of speech rate, fluency, intelligibility, likeability, anxiety, cognitive impairment, and speech-language disorder/delay; effects of training and awareness of the manipulation on ratings were limited. There were no significant effects of the manipulation on intelligibility or formally coded prosody judgments. Conclusions Age-related voice characteristics can greatly affect judgments of speech and talker characteristics, raising cautionary notes for developmental research and clinical work. PMID:23275414

  13. Applications for Subvocal Speech

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jorgensen, Charles; Betts, Bradley

    2007-01-01

    A research and development effort now underway is directed toward the use of subvocal speech for communication in settings in which (1) acoustic noise could interfere excessively with ordinary vocal communication and/or (2) acoustic silence or secrecy of communication is required. By "subvocal speech" is meant sub-audible electromyographic (EMG) signals, associated with speech, that are acquired from the surface of the larynx and lingual areas of the throat. Topics addressed in this effort include recognition of the sub-vocal EMG signals that represent specific original words or phrases; transformation (including encoding and/or enciphering) of the signals into forms that are less vulnerable to distortion, degradation, and/or interception; and reconstruction of the original words or phrases at the receiving end of a communication link. Potential applications include ordinary verbal communications among hazardous- material-cleanup workers in protective suits, workers in noisy environments, divers, and firefighters, and secret communications among law-enforcement officers and military personnel in combat and other confrontational situations.

  14. Revisiting speech interference in classrooms.

    PubMed

    Picard, M; Bradley, J S

    2001-01-01

    A review of the effects of ambient noise and reverberation on speech intelligibility in classrooms has been completed because of the long-standing lack of agreement on preferred acoustical criteria for unconstrained speech accessibility and communication in educational facilities. An overwhelming body of evidence has been collected to suggest that noise levels in particular are usually far in excess of any reasonable prescription for optimal conditions for understanding speech in classrooms. Quite surprisingly, poor classroom acoustics seem to be the prevailing condition for both normally-hearing and hearing-impaired students with reported A-weighted ambient noise levels 4-37 dB above values currently agreed upon to provide optimal understanding. Revision of currently proposed room acoustic performance criteria to ensure speech accessibility for all students indicates the need for a guideline weighted for age and one for more vulnerable groups. For teens (12-year-olds and older) and young adults having normal speech processing in noise, ambient noise levels not exceeding 40 dBA are suggested as acceptable, and reverberation times of about 0.5 s are concluded to be optimum. Younger students, having normal speech processing in noise for their age, would require noise levels ranging from 39 dBA for 10-11-year-olds to only 28.5 dBA for 6-7-year-olds. By contrast, groups suspected of delayed speech processing in noise may require levels as low as only 21.5 dBA at age 6-7. As one would expect, these more vulnerable students would include the hearing-impaired in the course of language development and non-native listeners. PMID:11688542

  15. Experimental comparison between speech transmission index, rapid speech transmission index, and speech intelligibility index.

    PubMed

    Larm, Petra; Hongisto, Valtteri

    2006-02-01

    During the acoustical design of, e.g., auditoria or open-plan offices, it is important to know how speech can be perceived in various parts of the room. Different objective methods have been developed to measure and predict speech intelligibility, and these have been extensively used in various spaces. In this study, two such methods were compared, the speech transmission index (STI) and the speech intelligibility index (SII). Also the simplification of the STI, the room acoustics speech transmission index (RASTI), was considered. These quantities are all based on determining an apparent speech-to-noise ratio on selected frequency bands and summing them using a specific weighting. For comparison, some data were needed on the possible differences of these methods resulting from the calculation scheme and also measuring equipment. Their prediction accuracy was also of interest. Measurements were made in a laboratory having adjustable noise level and absorption, and in a real auditorium. It was found that the measurement equipment, especially the selection of the loudspeaker, can greatly affect the accuracy of the results. The prediction accuracy of the RASTI was found acceptable, if the input values for the prediction are accurately known, even though the studied space was not ideally diffuse. PMID:16521772

  16. Experimental comparison between speech transmission index, rapid speech transmission index, and speech intelligibility index.

    PubMed

    Larm, Petra; Hongisto, Valtteri

    2006-02-01

    During the acoustical design of, e.g., auditoria or open-plan offices, it is important to know how speech can be perceived in various parts of the room. Different objective methods have been developed to measure and predict speech intelligibility, and these have been extensively used in various spaces. In this study, two such methods were compared, the speech transmission index (STI) and the speech intelligibility index (SII). Also the simplification of the STI, the room acoustics speech transmission index (RASTI), was considered. These quantities are all based on determining an apparent speech-to-noise ratio on selected frequency bands and summing them using a specific weighting. For comparison, some data were needed on the possible differences of these methods resulting from the calculation scheme and also measuring equipment. Their prediction accuracy was also of interest. Measurements were made in a laboratory having adjustable noise level and absorption, and in a real auditorium. It was found that the measurement equipment, especially the selection of the loudspeaker, can greatly affect the accuracy of the results. The prediction accuracy of the RASTI was found acceptable, if the input values for the prediction are accurately known, even though the studied space was not ideally diffuse.

  17. Robust Speech Rate Estimation for Spontaneous Speech

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Dagen; Narayanan, Shrikanth S.

    2010-01-01

    In this paper, we propose a direct method for speech rate estimation from acoustic features without requiring any automatic speech transcription. We compare various spectral and temporal signal analysis and smoothing strategies to better characterize the underlying syllable structure to derive speech rate. The proposed algorithm extends the methods of spectral subband correlation by including temporal correlation and the use of prominent spectral subbands for improving the signal correlation essential for syllable detection. Furthermore, to address some of the practical robustness issues in previously proposed methods, we introduce some novel components into the algorithm such as the use of pitch confidence for filtering spurious syllable envelope peaks, magnifying window for tackling neighboring syllable smearing, and relative peak measure thresholds for pseudo peak rejection. We also describe an automated approach for learning algorithm parameters from data, and find the optimal settings through Monte Carlo simulations and parameter sensitivity analysis. Final experimental evaluations are conducted based on a portion of the Switchboard corpus for which manual phonetic segmentation information, and published results for direct comparison are available. The results show a correlation coefficient of 0.745 with respect to the ground truth based on manual segmentation. This result is about a 17% improvement compared to the current best single estimator and a 11% improvement over the multiestimator evaluated on the same Switchboard database. PMID:20428476

  18. Articulatory-to-Acoustic Relations in Response to Speaking Rate and Loudness Manipulations

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mefferd, Antje S.; Green, Jordan R.

    2010-01-01

    Purpose: In this investigation, the authors determined the strength of association between tongue kinematic and speech acoustics changes in response to speaking rate and loudness manipulations. Performance changes in the kinematic and acoustic domains were measured using two aspects of speech production presumably affecting speech clarity:…

  19. An Acoustic Study of the Relationships among Neurologic Disease, Dysarthria Type, and Severity of Dysarthria

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kim, Yunjung; Kent, Raymond D.; Weismer, Gary

    2011-01-01

    Purpose: This study examined acoustic predictors of speech intelligibility in speakers with several types of dysarthria secondary to different diseases and conducted classification analysis solely by acoustic measures according to 3 variables (disease, speech severity, and dysarthria type). Method: Speech recordings from 107 speakers with…

  20. Headphone localization of speech

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Begault, Durand R.; Wenzel, Elizabeth M.

    1993-01-01

    Three-dimensional acoustic display systems have recently been developed that synthesize virtual sound sources over headphones based on filtering by head-related transfer functions (HRTFs), the direction-dependent spectral changes caused primarily by the pinnae. In this study, 11 inexperienced subjects judged the apparent spatial location of headphone-presented speech stimuli filtered with nonindividualized HRTFs. About half of the subjects 'pulled' their judgments toward either the median or the lateral-vertical planes, and estimates were almost always elevated. Individual differences were pronounced for the distance judgments; 15 to 46 percent of stimuli were heard inside the head, with the shortest estimates near the median plane. The results suggest that most listeners can obtain useful azimuth information from speech stimuli filtered by nonindividualized HRTFs. Measurements of localization error and reversal rates are comparable with a previous study that used broadband noise stimuli.

  1. Single-shot analytical assay based on graphene-oxide-modified surface acoustic wave biosensor for detection of single-nucleotide polymorphisms.

    PubMed

    Liu, Xiang; Wang, Jia-Ying; Mao, Xiao-Bing; Ning, Yong; Zhang, Guo-Jun

    2015-09-15

    The combination of a surface acoustic wave (SAW) biosensor with graphene oxide (GO) provides a promising perspective for detecting DNA mutation. The GO-modified SAW biosensor was prepared by conjugating GO onto the SAW chip surface via electrostatic interaction. Afterward, the probe was immobilized on the GO surface, and detection of DNA mutation was realized by hybridization. The hybridization with a variety of targets would yield different mass and conformational changes on the chip surface, causing the different SAW signals in real time. A total of 137 clinical samples were detected by a single-shot analytical assay based on GO-modified SAW biosensor and direct sequencing in parallel. The diagnostic performance (both sensitivity and specificity) of the assay was evaluated with the direct sequencing as a reference testing method. The phase-shift value of three genotypes in 137 clinical samples was significantly different (p < 0.001). Furthermore, testing of diagnostic performance yielded diagnostic sensitivity and specificity of 100% and 88.6% for identifying CT and CC genotype, 98.0% and 96.2% for identifying CT and TT genotype, respectively. The single-shot analytical assay based on the GO-modified SAW biosensor could be exploited as a potential useful tool to identify CYP2D6*10 polymorphisms in clinical practice of personalized medicine.

  2. Improving on hidden Markov models: An articulatorily constrained, maximum likelihood approach to speech recognition and speech coding

    SciTech Connect

    Hogden, J.

    1996-11-05

    The goal of the proposed research is to test a statistical model of speech recognition that incorporates the knowledge that speech is produced by relatively slow motions of the tongue, lips, and other speech articulators. This model is called Maximum Likelihood Continuity Mapping (Malcom). Many speech researchers believe that by using constraints imposed by articulator motions, we can improve or replace the current hidden Markov model based speech recognition algorithms. Unfortunately, previous efforts to incorporate information about articulation into speech recognition algorithms have suffered because (1) slight inaccuracies in our knowledge or the formulation of our knowledge about articulation may decrease recognition performance, (2) small changes in the assumptions underlying models of speech production can lead to large changes in the speech derived from the models, and (3) collecting measurements of human articulator positions in sufficient quantity for training a speech recognition algorithm is still impractical. The most interesting (and in fact, unique) quality of Malcom is that, even though Malcom makes use of a mapping between acoustics and articulation, Malcom can be trained to recognize speech using only acoustic data. By learning the mapping between acoustics and articulation using only acoustic data, Malcom avoids the difficulties involved in collecting articulator position measurements and does not require an articulatory synthesizer model to estimate the mapping between vocal tract shapes and speech acoustics. Preliminary experiments that demonstrate that Malcom can learn the mapping between acoustics and articulation are discussed. Potential applications of Malcom aside from speech recognition are also discussed. Finally, specific deliverables resulting from the proposed research are described.

  3. Sound scattering from rough bubbly ocean surface based on modified sea surface acoustic simulator and consideration of various incident angles and sub-surface bubbles' radii

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bolghasi, Alireza; Ghadimi, Parviz; Chekab, Mohammad A. Feizi

    2016-09-01

    The aim of the present study is to improve the capabilities and precision of a recently introduced Sea Surface Acoustic Simulator (SSAS) developed based on optimization of the Helmholtz-Kirchhoff-Fresnel (HKF) method. The improved acoustic simulator, hereby known as the Modified SSAS (MSSAS), is capable of determining sound scattering from the sea surface and includes an extended Hall-Novarini model and optimized HKF method. The extended Hall-Novarini model is used for considering the effects of sub-surface bubbles over a wider range of radii of sub-surface bubbles compared to the previous SSAS version. Furthermore, MSSAS has the capability of making a three-dimensional simulation of scattered sound from the rough bubbly sea surface with less error than that of the Critical Sea Tests (CST) experiments. Also, it presents scattered pressure levels from the rough bubbly sea surface based on various incident angles of sound. Wind speed, frequency, incident angle, and pressure level of the sound source are considered as input data, and scattered pressure levels and scattering coefficients are provided. Finally, different parametric studies were conducted on wind speeds, frequencies, and incident angles to indicate that MSSAS is quite capable of simulating sound scattering from the rough bubbly sea surface, according to the scattering mechanisms determined by Ogden and Erskine. Therefore, it is concluded that MSSAS is valid for both scattering mechanisms and the transition region between them that are defined by Ogden and Erskine.

  4. Sound scattering from rough bubbly ocean surface based on modified sea surface acoustic simulator and consideration of various incident angles and sub-surface bubbles' radii

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bolghasi, Alireza; Ghadimi, Parviz; Chekab, Mohammad A. Feizi

    2016-08-01

    The aim of the present study is to improve the capabilities and precision of a recently introduced Sea Surface Acoustic Simulator (SSAS) developed based on optimization of the Helmholtz-Kirchhoff-Fresnel (HKF) method. The improved acoustic simulator, hereby known as the Modified SSAS (MSSAS), is capable of determining sound scattering from the sea surface and includes an extended Hall-Novarini model and optimized HKF method. The extended Hall-Novarini model is used for considering the effects of sub-surface bubbles over a wider range of radii of sub-surface bubbles compared to the previous SSAS version. Furthermore, MSSAS has the capability of making a three-dimensional simulation of scattered sound from the rough bubbly sea surface with less error than that of the Critical Sea Tests (CST) experiments. Also, it presents scattered pressure levels from the rough bubbly sea surface based on various incident angles of sound. Wind speed, frequency, incident angle, and pressure level of the sound source are considered as input data, and scattered pressure levels and scattering coefficients are provided. Finally, different parametric studies were conducted on wind speeds, frequencies, and incident angles to indicate that MSSAS is quite capable of simulating sound scattering from the rough bubbly sea surface, according to the scattering mechanisms determined by Ogden and Erskine. Therefore, it is concluded that MSSAS is valid for both scattering mechanisms and the transition region between them that are defined by Ogden and Erskine.

  5. Acoustic Differences between Humorous and Sincere Communicative Intentions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hoicka, Elena; Gattis, Merideth

    2012-01-01

    Previous studies indicate that the acoustic features of speech discriminate between positive and negative communicative intentions, such as approval and prohibition. Two studies investigated whether acoustic features of speech can discriminate between two positive communicative intentions: humour and sweet-sincerity, where sweet-sincerity involved…

  6. Perception of synthetic speech produced automatically by rule: Intelligibility of eight text-to-speech systems.

    PubMed

    Greene, Beth G; Logan, John S; Pisoni, David B

    1986-03-01

    We present the results of studies designed to measure the segmental intelligibility of eight text-to-speech systems and a natural speech control, using the Modified Rhyme Test (MRT). Results indicated that the voices tested could be grouped into four categories: natural speech, high-quality synthetic speech, moderate-quality synthetic speech, and low-quality synthetic speech. The overall performance of the best synthesis system, DECtalk-Paul, was equivalent to natural speech only in terms of performance on initial consonants. The findings are discussed in terms of recent work investigating the perception of synthetic speech under more severe conditions. Suggestions for future research on improving the quality of synthetic speech are also considered. PMID:23225916

  7. Auditory-Perceptual Learning Improves Speech Motor Adaptation in Children

    PubMed Central

    Shiller, Douglas M.; Rochon, Marie-Lyne

    2015-01-01

    Auditory feedback plays an important role in children’s speech development by providing the child with information about speech outcomes that is used to learn and fine-tune speech motor plans. The use of auditory feedback in speech motor learning has been extensively studied in adults by examining oral motor responses to manipulations of auditory feedback during speech production. Children are also capable of adapting speech motor patterns to perceived changes in auditory feedback, however it is not known whether their capacity for motor learning is limited by immature auditory-perceptual abilities. Here, the link between speech perceptual ability and the capacity for motor learning was explored in two groups of 5–7-year-old children who underwent a period of auditory perceptual training followed by tests of speech motor adaptation to altered auditory feedback. One group received perceptual training on a speech acoustic property relevant to the motor task while a control group received perceptual training on an irrelevant speech contrast. Learned perceptual improvements led to an enhancement in speech motor adaptation (proportional to the perceptual change) only for the experimental group. The results indicate that children’s ability to perceive relevant speech acoustic properties has a direct influence on their capacity for sensory-based speech motor adaptation. PMID:24842067

  8. Auditory-perceptual learning improves speech motor adaptation in children.

    PubMed

    Shiller, Douglas M; Rochon, Marie-Lyne

    2014-08-01

    Auditory feedback plays an important role in children's speech development by providing the child with information about speech outcomes that is used to learn and fine-tune speech motor plans. The use of auditory feedback in speech motor learning has been extensively studied in adults by examining oral motor responses to manipulations of auditory feedback during speech production. Children are also capable of adapting speech motor patterns to perceived changes in auditory feedback; however, it is not known whether their capacity for motor learning is limited by immature auditory-perceptual abilities. Here, the link between speech perceptual ability and the capacity for motor learning was explored in two groups of 5- to 7-year-old children who underwent a period of auditory perceptual training followed by tests of speech motor adaptation to altered auditory feedback. One group received perceptual training on a speech acoustic property relevant to the motor task while a control group received perceptual training on an irrelevant speech contrast. Learned perceptual improvements led to an enhancement in speech motor adaptation (proportional to the perceptual change) only for the experimental group. The results indicate that children's ability to perceive relevant speech acoustic properties has a direct influence on their capacity for sensory-based speech motor adaptation.

  9. Speech disorders - children

    MedlinePlus

    ... of speech disorders may disappear on their own. Speech therapy may help with more severe symptoms or speech ... the disorder. Speech can often be improved with speech therapy. Early treatment is likely to have better results.

  10. Effect of trapped electron on the dust ion acoustic waves in dusty plasma using time fractional modified Korteweg-de Vries equation

    SciTech Connect

    Nazari-Golshan, A.; Nourazar, S. S.

    2013-10-15

    The time fractional modified Korteweg-de Vries (TFMKdV) equation is solved to study the nonlinear propagation of small but finite amplitude dust ion-acoustic (DIA) solitary waves in un-magnetized dusty plasma with trapped electrons. The plasma is composed of a cold ion fluid, stationary dust grains, and hot electrons obeying a trapped electron distribution. The TFMKdV equation is derived by using the semi-inverse and Agrawal's methods and then solved by the Laplace Adomian decomposition method. Our results show that the amplitude of the DIA solitary waves increases with the increase of time fractional order β, the wave velocity v{sub 0}, and the population of the background free electrons λ. However, it is vice-versa for the deviation from isothermality parameter b, which is in agreement with the result obtained previously.

  11. Clinical and acoustical variability in hypokinetic dysarthria

    SciTech Connect

    Metter, E.J.; Hanson, W.R.

    1986-10-01

    Ten male patients with parkinsonism secondary to Parkinson's disease or progressive supranuclear palsy had clinical neurological, speech, and acoustical speech evaluations. In addition, seven of the patients were evaluated by x-ray computed tomography (CT) and (F-18)-fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG) positron emission tomography (PET). Extensive variability of speech features, both clinical and acoustical, were found and seemed to be independent of the severity of any parkinsonian sign, CT, or FDG PET. In addition, little relationship existed between the variability across each measured speech feature. What appeared to be important for the appearance of abnormal acoustic measures was the degree of overall severity of the dysarthria. These observations suggest that a better understanding of hypokinetic dysarthria may result from more extensive examination of the variability between patients. Emphasizing a specific feature such as rapid speaking rate in characterizing hypokinetic dysarthria focuses on a single and inconstant finding in a complex speech pattern.

  12. Extensions to the Speech Disorders Classification System (SDCS).

    PubMed

    Shriberg, Lawrence D; Fourakis, Marios; Hall, Sheryl D; Karlsson, Heather B; Lohmeier, Heather L; McSweeny, Jane L; Potter, Nancy L; Scheer-Cohen, Alison R; Strand, Edythe A; Tilkens, Christie M; Wilson, David L

    2010-10-01

    This report describes three extensions to a classification system for paediatric speech sound disorders termed the Speech Disorders Classification System (SDCS). Part I describes a classification extension to the SDCS to differentiate motor speech disorders from speech delay and to differentiate among three sub-types of motor speech disorders. Part II describes the Madison Speech Assessment Protocol (MSAP), an ∼ 2-hour battery of 25 measures that includes 15 speech tests and tasks. Part III describes the Competence, Precision, and Stability Analytics (CPSA) framework, a current set of ∼ 90 perceptual- and acoustic-based indices of speech, prosody, and voice used to quantify and classify sub-types of Speech Sound Disorders (SSD). A companion paper provides reliability estimates for the perceptual and acoustic data reduction methods used in the SDCS. The agreement estimates in the companion paper support the reliability of SDCS methods and illustrate the complementary roles of perceptual and acoustic methods in diagnostic analyses of SSD of unknown origin. Examples of research using the extensions to the SDCS described in the present report include diagnostic findings for a sample of youth with motor speech disorders associated with galactosemia, and a test of the hypothesis of apraxia of speech in a group of children with autism spectrum disorders. All SDCS methods and reference databases running in the PEPPER (Programs to Examine Phonetic and Phonologic Evaluation Records) environment will be disseminated without cost when complete.

  13. Symbolic Speech

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Podgor, Ellen S.

    1976-01-01

    The concept of symbolic speech emanates from the 1967 case of United States v. O'Brien. These discussions of flag desecration, grooming and dress codes, nude entertainment, buttons and badges, and musical expression show that the courts place symbolic speech in different strata from verbal communication. (LBH)

  14. Speech Aids

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1987-01-01

    Designed to assist deaf and hearing impaired-persons in achieving better speech, Resnick Worldwide Inc.'s device provides a visual means of cuing the deaf as a speech-improvement measure. This is done by electronically processing the subjects' sounds and comparing them with optimum values which are displayed for comparison.

  15. Speech coding

    SciTech Connect

    Ravishankar, C., Hughes Network Systems, Germantown, MD

    1998-05-08

    Speech is the predominant means of communication between human beings and since the invention of the telephone by Alexander Graham Bell in 1876, speech services have remained to be the core service in almost all telecommunication systems. Original analog methods of telephony had the disadvantage of speech signal getting corrupted by noise, cross-talk and distortion Long haul transmissions which use repeaters to compensate for the loss in signal strength on transmission links also increase the associated noise and distortion. On the other hand digital transmission is relatively immune to noise, cross-talk and distortion primarily because of the capability to faithfully regenerate digital signal at each repeater purely based on a binary decision. Hence end-to-end performance of the digital link essentially becomes independent of the length and operating frequency bands of the link Hence from a transmission point of view digital transmission has been the preferred approach due to its higher immunity to noise. The need to carry digital speech became extremely important from a service provision point of view as well. Modem requirements have introduced the need for robust, flexible and secure services that can carry a multitude of signal types (such as voice, data and video) without a fundamental change in infrastructure. Such a requirement could not have been easily met without the advent of digital transmission systems, thereby requiring speech to be coded digitally. The term Speech Coding is often referred to techniques that represent or code speech signals either directly as a waveform or as a set of parameters by analyzing the speech signal. In either case, the codes are transmitted to the distant end where speech is reconstructed or synthesized using the received set of codes. A more generic term that is applicable to these techniques that is often interchangeably used with speech coding is the term voice coding. This term is more generic in the sense that the

  16. Statistical modeling of infant-directed versus adult-directed speech: Insights from speech recognition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kirchhoff, Katrin; Schimmel, Steven

    2003-10-01

    Studies on infant speech perception have shown that infant-directed speech (motherese) exhibits exaggerated acoustic properties, which are assumed to guide infants in the acquisition of phonemic categories. Training an automatic speech recognizer on such data might similarly lead to improved performance since classes can be expected to be more clearly separated in the training material. This claim was tested by training automatic speech recognizers on adult-directed (AD) versus infant-directed (ID) speech and testing them under identical versus mismatched conditions. 32 mother-infant conversations and 32 mother-adult conversations were used as training and test data. Both sets of conversations included a set of cue words containing unreduced vowels (e.g., sheep, boot, top, etc.), which mothers were encouraged to use repeatedly. Experiments on continuous speech recognition of the entire data set showed that recognizers trained on infant-directed speech did perform significantly better than those trained on adult-directed speech. However, isolated word recognition experiments focusing on the above-mentioned cue words showed that the drop in performance of the ID-trained speech recognizer on AD test speech was significantly smaller than vice versa, suggesting that speech with over-emphasized phonetic contrasts may indeed constitute better training material for speech recognition. [Work supported by CMBL, University of Washington.

  17. Improving robustness of speech recognition systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mitra, Vikramjit

    2010-11-01

    Current Automatic Speech Recognition (ASR) systems fail to perform nearly as good as human speech recognition performance due to their lack of robustness against speech variability and noise contamination. The goal of this dissertation is to investigate these critical robustness issues, put forth different ways to address them and finally present an ASR architecture based upon these robustness criteria. Acoustic variations adversely affect the performance of current phone-based ASR systems, in which speech is modeled as 'beads-on-a-string', where the beads are the individual phone units. While phone units are distinctive in cognitive domain, they are varying in the physical domain and their variation occurs due to a combination of factors including speech style, speaking rate etc.; a phenomenon commonly known as 'coarticulation'. Traditional ASR systems address such coarticulatory variations by using contextualized phone-units such as triphones. Articulatory phonology accounts for coarticulatory variations by modeling speech as a constellation of constricting actions known as articulatory gestures. In such a framework, speech variations such as coarticulation and lenition are accounted for by gestural overlap in time and gestural reduction in space. To realize a gesture-based ASR system, articulatory gestures have to be inferred from the acoustic signal. At the initial stage of this research an initial study was performed using synthetically generated speech to obtain a proof-of-concept that articulatory gestures can indeed be recognized from the speech signal. It was observed that having vocal tract constriction trajectories (TVs) as intermediate representation facilitated the gesture recognition task from the speech signal. Presently no natural speech database contains articulatory gesture annotation; hence an automated iterative time-warping architecture is proposed that can annotate any natural speech database with articulatory gestures and TVs. Two natural

  18. History of chronic stress modifies acute stress-evoked fear memory and acoustic startle in male rats.

    PubMed

    Schmeltzer, Sarah N; Vollmer, Lauren L; Rush, Jennifer E; Weinert, Mychal; Dolgas, Charles M; Sah, Renu

    2015-01-01

    Chronicity of trauma exposure plays an important role in the pathophysiology of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Thus, exposure to multiple traumas on a chronic scale leads to worse outcomes than acute events. The rationale for the current study was to investigate the effects of a single adverse event versus the same event on a background of chronic stress. We hypothesized that a history of chronic stress would lead to worse behavioral outcomes than a single event alone. Male rats (n = 14/group) were exposed to either a single traumatic event in the form of electric foot shocks (acute shock, AS), or to footshocks on a background of chronic stress (chronic variable stress-shock, CVS-S). PTSD-relevant behaviors (fear memory and acoustic startle responses) were measured following 7 d recovery. In line with our hypothesis, CVS-S elicited significant increases in fear acquisition and conditioning versus the AS group. Unexpectedly, CVS-S elicited reduced startle reactivity to an acoustic stimulus in comparison with the AS group. Significant increase in FosB/ΔFosB-like immunostaining was observed in the dentate gyrus, basolateral amygdala and medial prefrontal cortex of CVS-S rats. Assessments of neuropeptide Y (NPY), a stress-regulatory transmitter associated with chronic PTSD, revealed selective reduction in the hippocampus of CVS-S rats. Collectively, our data show that cumulative stress potentiates delayed fear memory and impacts defensive responding. Altered neuronal activation in forebrain limbic regions and reduced NPY may contribute to these phenomena. Our preclinical studies support clinical findings reporting worse PTSD outcomes stemming from cumulative traumatization in contrast to acute trauma.

  19. Phrase-level speech simulation with an airway modulation model of speech production.

    PubMed

    Story, Brad H

    2013-06-01

    Artificial talkers and speech synthesis systems have long been used as a means of understanding both speech production and speech perception. The development of an airway modulation model is described that simulates the time-varying changes of the glottis and vocal tract, as well as acoustic wave propagation, during speech production. The result is a type of artificial talker that can be used to study various aspects of how sound is generated by humans and how that sound is perceived by a listener. The primary components of the model are introduced and simulation of words and phrases are demonstrated.

  20. Improving the speech intelligibility in classrooms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lam, Choi Ling Coriolanus

    One of the major acoustical concerns in classrooms is the establishment of effective verbal communication between teachers and students. Non-optimal acoustical conditions, resulting in reduced verbal communication, can cause two main problems. First, they can lead to reduce learning efficiency. Second, they can also cause fatigue, stress, vocal strain and health problems, such as headaches and sore throats, among teachers who are forced to compensate for poor acoustical conditions by raising their voices. Besides, inadequate acoustical conditions can induce the usage of public address system. Improper usage of such amplifiers or loudspeakers can lead to impairment of students' hearing systems. The social costs of poor classroom acoustics will be large to impair the learning of children. This invisible problem has far reaching implications for learning, but is easily solved. Many researches have been carried out that they have accurately and concisely summarized the research findings on classrooms acoustics. Though, there is still a number of challenging questions remaining unanswered. Most objective indices for speech intelligibility are essentially based on studies of western languages. Even several studies of tonal languages as Mandarin have been conducted, there is much less on Cantonese. In this research, measurements have been done in unoccupied rooms to investigate the acoustical parameters and characteristics of the classrooms. The speech intelligibility tests, which based on English, Mandarin and Cantonese, and the survey were carried out on students aged from 5 years old to 22 years old. It aims to investigate the differences in intelligibility between English, Mandarin and Cantonese of the classrooms in Hong Kong. The significance on speech transmission index (STI) related to Phonetically Balanced (PB) word scores will further be developed. Together with developed empirical relationship between the speech intelligibility in classrooms with the variations

  1. Contemporary Issues in Phoneme Production by Hearing-Impaired Persons: Physiological and Acoustic Aspects.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McGarr, Nancy S.; Whitehead, Robert

    1992-01-01

    This paper on physiologic correlates of speech production in children and youth with hearing impairments focuses specifically on the production of phonemes and includes data on respiration for speech production, phonation, speech aerodynamics, articulation, and acoustic analyses of speech by hearing-impaired persons. (Author/DB)

  2. Some articulatory details of emotional speech

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Sungbok; Yildirim, Serdar; Bulut, Murtaza; Kazemzadeh, Abe; Narayanan, Shrikanth

    2005-09-01

    Differences in speech articulation among four emotion types, neutral, anger, sadness, and happiness are investigated by analyzing tongue tip, jaw, and lip movement data collected from one male and one female speaker of American English. The data were collected using an electromagnetic articulography (EMA) system while subjects produce simulated emotional speech. Pitch, root-mean-square (rms) energy and the first three formants were estimated for vowel segments. For both speakers, angry speech exhibited the largest rms energy and largest articulatory activity in terms of displacement range and movement speed. Happy speech is characterized by largest pitch variability. It has higher rms energy than neutral speech but articulatory activity is rather comparable to, or less than, neutral speech. That is, happy speech is more prominent in voicing activity than in articulation. Sad speech exhibits longest sentence duration and lower rms energy. However, its articulatory activity is no less than neutral speech. Interestingly, for the male speaker, articulation for vowels in sad speech is consistently more peripheral (i.e., more forwarded displacements) when compared to other emotions. However, this does not hold for female subject. These and other results will be discussed in detail with associated acoustics and perceived emotional qualities. [Work supported by NIH.

  3. Aeroacoustics production of fricative speech sounds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krane, Michael; Gary, Settles

    2001-05-01

    The aeroacoustic production of fricative speech sounds is studied using schlieren imaging and acoustic measurements. The focus is the structure of the turbulent jets formed during fricative speech sound production, and how interaction of the jet with articulators affects the acoustic nature of the speech sound. Patterns of the jets formed during the articulation of both voiced and unvoiced fricatives (s and z) are shown using schlieren images. In particular, the interaction of the jet with articulators such as teeth and lips are clearly seen, and demonstrated by varying articulator positions. Pressure measurements were made in conjunction with the images using a microphone placed near the teeth and one in the farfield. The pressure measurements show the acoustic consequences of the various jet/articulator interactions, further clarifying which articulators are most important in determining the aeroacoustic source characteristics.

  4. Role of superthermality on dust acoustic structures in the frame of a modified Zakharov-Kuznetsov equation in magnetized dusty plasma

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sabetkar, Akbar; Dorranian, Davoud

    2015-03-01

    In this paper, a theoretical investigation is presented to study the existence and characteristics of the propagation of dust acoustic (DA) waves in an obliquely propagating magnetized dusty plasma with two populations of ions having two distinct temperatures, electrons that are modeled by three-dimensional nonextensive and κ -distribution functions, respectively, and negative dust particles. Normal mode analysis (reductive perturbation method) is used to derive lower- and higher-order nonlinear equations governing the evolution of small but finite amplitude DA waves, namely the Zakharov-Kuznetsov (ZK) and the modified Zakharov-Kuznetsov (mZK) equations. The basic features (e.g., amplitude, width, phase speed, polarity) of both DA ZK and mZK solitons have been thoroughly examined by the numerical analysis of their equations. It is observed that the characteristics and properties of the DA solitary waves (DASWs) are significantly modified by the superthermality of electrons, nonextensivity of ions, cold-to-hot ion temperature ratio, relative number densities of two species of ions, and the strength of the magnetic field and obliqueness of the system. Furthermore, it has been found that the DA ZK solitons exhibit only negative polarity of solitary waves when the superthermality of electrons, nonextensivity of ions, and temperature ratio of ions are smaller or greater than their critical values. The present study may add to the understanding of the nonlinear propagation features of DA wave structures in high-energy astrophysical plasma systems.

  5. Measures to Evaluate the Effects of DBS on Speech Production

    PubMed Central

    Weismer, Gary; Yunusova, Yana; Bunton, Kate

    2011-01-01

    The purpose of this paper is to review and evaluate measures of speech production that could be used to document effects of Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) on speech performance, especially in persons with Parkinson disease (PD). A small set of evaluative criteria for these measures is presented first, followed by consideration of several speech physiology and speech acoustic measures that have been studied frequently and reported on in the literature on normal speech production, and speech production affected by neuromotor disorders (dysarthria). Each measure is reviewed and evaluated against the evaluative criteria. Embedded within this review and evaluation is a presentation of new data relating speech motions to speech intelligibility measures in speakers with PD, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), and control speakers (CS). These data are used to support the conclusion that at the present time the slope of second formant transitions (F2 slope), an acoustic measure, is well suited to make inferences to speech motion and to predict speech intelligibility. The use of other measures should not be ruled out, however, and we encourage further development of evaluative criteria for speech measures designed to probe the effects of DBS or any treatment with potential effects on speech production and communication skills. PMID:24932066

  6. The neuroanatomical and functional organization of speech perception.

    PubMed

    Scott, Sophie K; Johnsrude, Ingrid S

    2003-02-01

    A striking property of speech perception is its resilience in the face of acoustic variability (among speech sounds produced by different speakers at different times, for example). The robustness of speech perception might, in part, result from multiple, complementary representations of the input, which operate in both acoustic-phonetic feature-based and articulatory-gestural domains. Recent studies of the anatomical and functional organization of the non-human primate auditory cortical system point to multiple, parallel, hierarchically organized processing pathways that involve the temporal, parietal and frontal cortices. Functional neuroimaging evidence indicates that a similar organization might underlie speech perception in humans. These parallel, hierarchical processing 'streams', both within and across hemispheres, might operate on distinguishable, complementary types of representations and subserve complementary types of processing. Two long-opposing views of speech perception have posited a basis either in acoustic feature processing or in gestural motor processing; the view put forward here might help reconcile these positions. PMID:12536133

  7. Correlation study of predictive and descriptive metrics of speech intelligibility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stefaniw, Abigail; Shimizu, Yasushi; Smith, Dana

    2002-11-01

    There exists a wide range of speech-intelligibility metrics, each of which is designed to encapsulate a different aspect of room acoustics that relates to speech intelligibility. This study reviews the different definitions of and correlations between various proposed speech intelligibility measures. Speech Intelligibility metrics can be grouped by two main uses: prediction of designed rooms and description of existing rooms. Two descriptive metrics still under investigation are Ease of Hearing and Acoustical Comfort. These are measured by a simple questionnaire, and their relationships with each other and with significant speech intelligibility metrics are explored. A variety of rooms are modeled and auralized in cooperation with a larger study, including classrooms, lecture halls, and offices. Auralized rooms are used to conveniently provide calculated metrics and cross-talk canceled auralizations for diagnostic and descriptive intelligibility tests. Rooms are modeled in CATT-Acoustic and auralized with a multi-channel speaker array in a hemi-anechoic chamber.

  8. Prediction and constraint in audiovisual speech perception

    PubMed Central

    Peelle, Jonathan E.; Sommers, Mitchell S.

    2015-01-01

    During face-to-face conversational speech listeners must efficiently process a rapid and complex stream of multisensory information. Visual speech can serve as a critical complement to auditory information because it provides cues to both the timing of the incoming acoustic signal (the amplitude envelope, influencing attention and perceptual sensitivity) and its content (place and manner of articulation, constraining lexical selection). Here we review behavioral and neurophysiological evidence regarding listeners' use of visual speech information. Multisensory integration of audiovisual speech cues improves recognition accuracy, particularly for speech in noise. Even when speech is intelligible based solely on auditory information, adding visual information may reduce the cognitive demands placed on listeners through increasing precision of prediction. Electrophysiological studies demonstrate oscillatory cortical entrainment to speech in auditory cortex is enhanced when visual speech is present, increasing sensitivity to important acoustic cues. Neuroimaging studies also suggest increased activity in auditory cortex when congruent visual information is available, but additionally emphasize the involvement of heteromodal regions of posterior superior temporal sulcus as playing a role in integrative processing. We interpret these findings in a framework of temporally-focused lexical competition in which visual speech information affects auditory processing to increase sensitivity to auditory information through an early integration mechanism, and a late integration stage that incorporates specific information about a speaker's articulators to constrain the number of possible candidates in a spoken utterance. Ultimately it is words compatible with both auditory and visual information that most strongly determine successful speech perception during everyday listening. Thus, audiovisual speech perception is accomplished through multiple stages of integration, supported

  9. Coding pitch differences in voiceless fricatives: Whispered relative to normal speech.

    PubMed

    Heeren, Willemijn F L

    2015-12-01

    Intonation can be perceived in whispered speech despite the absence of the fundamental frequency. In the past, acoustic correlates of pitch in whisper have been sought in vowel content, but, recently, studies of normal speech demonstrated correlates of intonation in consonants as well. This study examined how consonants may contribute to the coding of intonation in whispered relative to normal speech. The acoustic characteristics of whispered, voiceless fricatives /s/ and /f/, produced at different pitch targets (low, mid, high), were investigated and compared to corresponding normal speech productions to assess if whisper contained secondary or compensatory pitch correlates. Furthermore, listener sensitivity to fricative cues to pitch in whisper was established, also relative to normal speech. Consistent with recent studies, acoustic correlates of whispered and normal speech fricatives systematically varied with pitch target. Comparable findings across speech modes showed that acoustic correlates were secondary. Discrimination of vowel-fricative-vowel stimuli was less accurate and slower in whispered than normal speech, which is attributed to differences in acoustic cues available. Perception of fricatives presented without their vowel contexts, however, revealed comparable processing speeds and response accuracies between speech modes, supporting the finding that within fricatives, acoustic correlates of pitch are similar across speech modes. PMID:26723300

  10. Acoustic Emphasis in Four Year Olds

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wonnacott, Elizabeth; Watson, Duane G.

    2008-01-01

    Acoustic emphasis may convey a range of subtle discourse distinctions, yet little is known about how this complex ability develops in children. This paper presents a first investigation of the factors which influence the production of acoustic prominence in young children's spontaneous speech. In a production experiment, SVO sentences were…

  11. Modeling words with subword units in an articulatorily constrained speech recognition algorithm

    SciTech Connect

    Hogden, J.

    1997-11-20

    The goal of speech recognition is to find the most probable word given the acoustic evidence, i.e. a string of VQ codes or acoustic features. Speech recognition algorithms typically take advantage of the fact that the probability of a word, given a sequence of VQ codes, can be calculated.

  12. Articulatory Mediation of Speech Perception: A Causal Analysis of Multi-Modal Imaging Data

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gow, David W., Jr.; Segawa, Jennifer A.

    2009-01-01

    The inherent confound between the organization of articulation and the acoustic-phonetic structure of the speech signal makes it exceptionally difficult to evaluate the competing claims of motor and acoustic-phonetic accounts of how listeners recognize coarticulated speech. Here we use Granger causation analysis of high spatiotemporal resolution…

  13. Compensation for Coarticulation: Disentangling Auditory and Gestural Theories of Perception of Coarticulatory Effects in Speech

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Viswanathan, Navin; Magnuson, James S.; Fowler, Carol A.

    2010-01-01

    According to one approach to speech perception, listeners perceive speech by applying general pattern matching mechanisms to the acoustic signal (e.g., Diehl, Lotto, & Holt, 2004). An alternative is that listeners perceive the phonetic gestures that structured the acoustic signal (e.g., Fowler, 1986). The two accounts have offered different…

  14. Influence of Visual Echo and Visual Reverberation on Speech Fluency in Stutterers.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Smolka, Elzbieta; Adamczyk, Bogdan

    1992-01-01

    The influence of visual signals (echo and reverberation) on speech fluency in 60 stutterers and nonstutterers was examined. Visual signals were found to exert a corrective influence on the speech of stutterers but less than the influence of acoustic stimuli. Use of visual signals in combination with acoustic and tactile signals is recommended. (DB)

  15. Across-formant integration and speech intelligibility: Effects of acoustic source properties in the presence and absence of a contralateral interferer.

    PubMed

    Summers, Robert J; Bailey, Peter J; Roberts, Brian

    2016-08-01

    The role of source properties in across-formant integration was explored using three-formant (F1+F2+F3) analogues of natural sentences (targets). In experiment 1, F1+F3 were harmonic analogues (H1+H3) generated using a monotonous buzz source and second-order resonators; in experiment 2, F1+F3 were tonal analogues (T1+T3). F2 could take either form (H2 or T2). Target formants were always presented monaurally; the receiving ear was assigned randomly on each trial. In some conditions, only the target was present; in others, a competitor for F2 (F2C) was presented contralaterally. Buzz-excited or tonal competitors were created using the time-reversed frequency and amplitude contours of F2. Listeners must reject F2C to optimize keyword recognition. Whether or not a competitor was present, there was no effect of source mismatch between F1+F3 and F2. The impact of adding F2C was modest when it was tonal but large when it was harmonic, irrespective of whether F2C matched F1+F3. This pattern was maintained when harmonic and tonal counterparts were loudness-matched (experiment 3). Source type and competition, rather than acoustic similarity, governed the phonetic contribution of a formant. Contrary to earlier research using dichotic targets, requiring across-ear integration to optimize intelligibility, H2C was an equally effective informational masker for H2 as for T2. PMID:27586751

  16. Integrated Spacesuit Audio System Enhances Speech Quality and Reduces Noise

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Huang, Yiteng Arden; Chen, Jingdong; Chen, Shaoyan Sharyl

    2009-01-01

    A new approach has been proposed for increasing astronaut comfort and speech capture. Currently, the special design of a spacesuit forms an extreme acoustic environment making it difficult to capture clear speech without compromising comfort. The proposed Integrated Spacesuit Audio (ISA) system is to incorporate the microphones into the helmet and use software to extract voice signals from background noise.

  17. The Pump-Valve Model of Speech Articulation.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dew, Donald

    The traditional respiration-phonation-articulation-resonation model of speech production which permeates introductory literature is not the only suitable model of this process. The pump-valve model, which derives from the acoustic theory of speech production, is a viable alternative. This newer model is also consistent with modern theories. It…

  18. The Hyperarticulation Hypothesis of Infant-Directed Speech

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cristia, Alejandrina; Seidl, Amanda

    2014-01-01

    Typically, the point vowels [i,?,u] are acoustically more peripheral in infant-directed speech (IDS) compared to adult-directed speech (ADS). If caregivers seek to highlight lexically relevant contrasts in IDS, then two sounds that are contrastive should become more distinct, whereas two sounds that are surface realizations of the same underlying…

  19. The Effects of Macroglossia on Speech: A Case Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mekonnen, Abebayehu Messele

    2012-01-01

    This article presents a case study of speech production in a 14-year-old Amharic-speaking boy. The boy had developed secondary macroglossia, related to a disturbance of growth hormones, following a history of normal speech development. Perceptual analysis combined with acoustic analysis and static palatography is used to investigate the specific…

  20. Near-Term Fetuses Process Temporal Features of Speech

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Granier-Deferre, Carolyn; Ribeiro, Aurelie; Jacquet, Anne-Yvonne; Bassereau, Sophie

    2011-01-01

    The perception of speech and music requires processing of variations in spectra and amplitude over different time intervals. Near-term fetuses can discriminate acoustic features, such as frequencies and spectra, but whether they can process complex auditory streams, such as speech sequences and more specifically their temporal variations, fast or…

  1. A Model for Speech Processing in Second Language Listening Activities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zoghbor, Wafa Shahada

    2016-01-01

    Teachers' understanding of the process of speech perception could inform practice in listening classrooms. Catford (1950) developed a model for speech perception taking into account the influence of the acoustic features of the linguistic forms used by the speaker, whereby the listener "identifies" and "interprets" these…

  2. Does Signal Degradation Affect Top-Down Processing of Speech?

    PubMed

    Wagner, Anita; Pals, Carina; de Blecourt, Charlotte M; Sarampalis, Anastasios; Başkent, Deniz

    2016-01-01

    Speech perception is formed based on both the acoustic signal and listeners' knowledge of the world and semantic context. Access to semantic information can facilitate interpretation of degraded speech, such as speech in background noise or the speech signal transmitted via cochlear implants (CIs). This paper focuses on the latter, and investigates the time course of understanding words, and how sentential context reduces listeners' dependency on the acoustic signal for natural and degraded speech via an acoustic CI simulation.In an eye-tracking experiment we combined recordings of listeners' gaze fixations with pupillometry, to capture effects of semantic information on both the time course and effort of speech processing. Normal-hearing listeners were presented with sentences with or without a semantically constraining verb (e.g., crawl) preceding the target (baby), and their ocular responses were recorded to four pictures, including the target, a phonological (bay) competitor and a semantic (worm) and an unrelated distractor.The results show that in natural speech, listeners' gazes reflect their uptake of acoustic information, and integration of preceding semantic context. Degradation of the signal leads to a later disambiguation of phonologically similar words, and to a delay in integration of semantic information. Complementary to this, the pupil dilation data show that early semantic integration reduces the effort in disambiguating phonologically similar words. Processing degraded speech comes with increased effort due to the impoverished nature of the signal. Delayed integration of semantic information further constrains listeners' ability to compensate for inaudible signals. PMID:27080670

  3. Cross-Channel Amplitude Sweeps Are Crucial to Speech Intelligibility

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Prendergast, Garreth; Green, Gary G. R.

    2012-01-01

    Classical views of speech perception argue that the static and dynamic characteristics of spectral energy peaks (formants) are the acoustic features that underpin phoneme recognition. Here we use representations where the amplitude modulations of sub-band filtered speech are described, precisely, in terms of co-sinusoidal pulses. These pulses are…

  4. Strategies for distant speech recognitionin reverberant environments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Delcroix, Marc; Yoshioka, Takuya; Ogawa, Atsunori; Kubo, Yotaro; Fujimoto, Masakiyo; Ito, Nobutaka; Kinoshita, Keisuke; Espi, Miquel; Araki, Shoko; Hori, Takaaki; Nakatani, Tomohiro

    2015-12-01

    Reverberation and noise are known to severely affect the automatic speech recognition (ASR) performance of speech recorded by distant microphones. Therefore, we must deal with reverberation if we are to realize high-performance hands-free speech recognition. In this paper, we review a recognition system that we developed at our laboratory to deal with reverberant speech. The system consists of a speech enhancement (SE) front-end that employs long-term linear prediction-based dereverberation followed by noise reduction. We combine our SE front-end with an ASR back-end that uses neural networks for acoustic and language modeling. The proposed system achieved top scores on the ASR task of the REVERB challenge. This paper describes the different technologies used in our system and presents detailed experimental results that justify our implementation choices and may provide hints for designing distant ASR systems.

  5. Segregation of unvoiced speech from nonspeech interference.

    PubMed

    Hu, Guoning; Wang, DeLiang

    2008-08-01

    Monaural speech segregation has proven to be extremely challenging. While efforts in computational auditory scene analysis have led to considerable progress in voiced speech segregation, little attention has been given to unvoiced speech, which lacks harmonic structure and has weaker energy, hence more susceptible to interference. This study proposes a new approach to the problem of segregating unvoiced speech from nonspeech interference. The study first addresses the question of how much speech is unvoiced. The segregation process occurs in two stages: Segmentation and grouping. In segmentation, the proposed model decomposes an input mixture into contiguous time-frequency segments by a multiscale analysis of event onsets and offsets. Grouping of unvoiced segments is based on Bayesian classification of acoustic-phonetic features. The proposed model for unvoiced speech segregation joins an existing model for voiced speech segregation to produce an overall system that can deal with both voiced and unvoiced speech. Systematic evaluation shows that the proposed system extracts a majority of unvoiced speech without including much interference, and it performs substantially better than spectral subtraction. PMID:18681616

  6. Some Issues in Infant Speech Perception: Do the Means Justify the Ends?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Weitzman, Raymond S.

    2007-01-01

    A major focus of research on language acquisition in infancy involves experimental studies of the infant's ability to discriminate various kinds of speech or speech-like stimuli. This research has demonstrated that infants are sensitive to many fine-grained differences in the acoustic properties of speech utterance. Furthermore, these empirical…

  7. Audiovisual Speech Perception in Children with Developmental Language Disorder in Degraded Listening Conditions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Meronen, Auli; Tiippana, Kaisa; Westerholm, Jari; Ahonen, Timo

    2013-01-01

    Purpose: The effect of the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) on the perception of audiovisual speech in children with and without developmental language disorder (DLD) was investigated by varying the noise level and the sound intensity of acoustic speech. The main hypotheses were that the McGurk effect (in which incongruent visual speech alters the…

  8. Effects of Elicitation Task Variables on Speech Production by Children with Cochlear Implants

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McCleary, Elizabeth A.; Ide-Helvie, Dana L.; Lotto, Andrew J.; Carney, Arlene Earley; Higgins, Maureen B.

    2007-01-01

    Given the interest in comparing speech production development in children with normal hearing and hearing impairment, it is important to evaluate how variables within speech elicitation tasks can differentially affect the acoustics of speech production for these groups. In a first experiment, children (6-14 years old) with cochlear implants…

  9. Children's Perception of Speech Produced in a Two-Talker Background

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Baker, Mallory; Buss, Emily; Jacks, Adam; Taylor, Crystal; Leibold, Lori J.

    2014-01-01

    Purpose: This study evaluated the degree to which children benefit from the acoustic modifications made by talkers when they produce speech in noise. Method: A repeated measures design compared the speech perception performance of children (5-11 years) and adults in a 2-talker masker. Target speech was produced in a 2-talker background or in…

  10. The Hypothesis of Apraxia of Speech in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shriberg, Lawrence D.; Paul, Rhea; Black, Lois M.; van Santen, Jan P.

    2011-01-01

    In a sample of 46 children aged 4-7 years with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and intelligible speech, there was no statistical support for the hypothesis of concomitant Childhood Apraxia of Speech (CAS). Perceptual and acoustic measures of participants' speech, prosody, and voice were compared with data from 40 typically-developing children, 13…

  11. EXPERIMENTAL ANALYSIS OF THE CONTROL OF SPEECH PRODUCTION AND PERCEPTION--VI. PROGRESS REPORT NO. 6.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    LANE, HARLAN

    VARIOUS ASPECTS OF THE PROGRESS OF AN EXPERIMENTAL PROGRAM IN SPEECH CONTROL WERE REPORTED. THE TOPICS COVERED IN THE DISCUSSIONS WERE (1) ACOUSTIC AND DISCRIMINATIVE PROPERTIES OF SPEECH SOUNDS, (2) MATCHING FUNCTIONS AND EQUAL-SENSATION CONTOURS FOR LOUDNESS, (3) RELATIONS BETWEEN IDENTIFICATION AND DISCRIMINATION FUNCTIONS FOR SPEECH AND…

  12. Spacecraft Internal Acoustic Environment Modeling

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chu, SShao-sheng R.; Allen, Christopher S.

    2009-01-01

    Acoustic modeling can be used to identify key noise sources, determine/analyze sub-allocated requirements, keep track of the accumulation of minor noise sources, and to predict vehicle noise levels at various stages in vehicle development, first with estimates of noise sources, later with experimental data. In FY09, the physical mockup developed in FY08, with interior geometric shape similar to Orion CM (Crew Module) IML (Interior Mode Line), was used to validate SEA (Statistical Energy Analysis) acoustic model development with realistic ventilation fan sources. The sound power levels of these sources were unknown a priori, as opposed to previous studies that RSS (Reference Sound Source) with known sound power level was used. The modeling results were evaluated based on comparisons to measurements of sound pressure levels over a wide frequency range, including the frequency range where SEA gives good results. Sound intensity measurement was performed over a rectangular-shaped grid system enclosing the ventilation fan source. Sound intensities were measured at the top, front, back, right, and left surfaces of the and system. Sound intensity at the bottom surface was not measured, but sound blocking material was placed tinder the bottom surface to reflect most of the incident sound energy back to the remaining measured surfaces. Integrating measured sound intensities over measured surfaces renders estimated sound power of the source. The reverberation time T6o of the mockup interior had been modified to match reverberation levels of ISS US Lab interior for speech frequency bands, i.e., 0.5k, 1k, 2k, 4 kHz, by attaching appropriately sized Thinsulate sound absorption material to the interior wall of the mockup. Sound absorption of Thinsulate was modeled in three methods: Sabine equation with measured mockup interior reverberation time T60, layup model based on past impedance tube testing, and layup model plus air absorption correction. The evaluation/validation was

  13. Head-on collisions of ion-acoustic Korteweg-de Vries/modified Korteweg-de Vries solitons in a magnetized quantum electron-positron-ion plasma

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghorui, Malay Kumar; Samanta, Utpal Kumar; Chatterjee, Prasanta

    2013-06-01

    The head-on collisions of ion-acoustic solitary waves (IASWs) in a dense magnetized quantum plasma are investigated. The two-sided Korteweg-de Vries (KdV) equations in generic case as well as the two-sided modified Korteweg-de Vries (mKdV) equations in a special case are obtained, the analytical phase shifts and the trajectories after the head-on collisions of two IASWs in a three species quantum plasma are derived by using the extended version of Poincaré-Lighthill-Kuo (PLK) method for both the situations. We provide the theoretical predictions about the existence of compressive and rarefactive IASWs in the model. We observe that in generic case collisions are possible among the same polarity solitons, whereas in the special case collisions are possible among the same or opposite polarities solitons. Moreover the colliding phase shifts are significantly affected by the quantum diffraction parameter, by the square of the ratio of ion gyrofrequency to ion plasma frequency and by obliqueness of propagation. The important observations of this manuscript are that the waves reach a maximum amplitude which is the superposition of the initial amplitudes and they suffer a time delay during their collision. The plasma parameter values for white dwarfs are taken for discussion.

  14. Free Speech Yearbook: 1972.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tedford, Thomas L., Ed.

    This book is a collection of essays on free speech issues and attitudes, compiled by the Commission on Freedom of Speech of the Speech Communication Association. Four articles focus on freedom of speech in classroom situations as follows: a philosophic view of teaching free speech, effects of a course on free speech on student attitudes,…

  15. New Ways in Teaching Connected Speech. New Ways Series

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brown, James Dean, Ed.

    2012-01-01

    Connected speech is based on a set of rules used to modify pronunciations so that words connect and flow more smoothly in natural speech (hafta versus have to). Native speakers of English tend to feel that connected speech is friendlier, more natural, more sympathetic, and more personal. Is there any reason why learners of English would prefer to…

  16. Lip Movement Exaggerations during Infant-Directed Speech

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Green, Jordan R.; Nip, Ignatius S. B.; Wilson, Erin M.; Mefferd, Antje S.; Yunusova, Yana

    2010-01-01

    Purpose: Although a growing body of literature has identified the positive effects of visual speech on speech and language learning, oral movements of infant-directed speech (IDS) have rarely been studied. This investigation used 3-dimensional motion capture technology to describe how mothers modify their lip movements when talking to their…

  17. Statistical properties of infant-directed versus adult-directed speech: Insights from speech recognition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kirchhoff, Katrin; Schimmel, Steven

    2005-04-01

    Previous studies have shown that infant-directed speech (`motherese') exhibits overemphasized acoustic properties which may facilitate the acquisition of phonetic categories by infant learners. It has been suggested that the use of infant-directed data for training automatic speech recognition systems might also enhance the automatic learning and discrimination of phonetic categories. This study investigates the properties of infant-directed vs. adult-directed speech from the point of view of the statistical pattern recognition paradigm underlying automatic speech recognition. Isolated-word speech recognizers were trained on adult-directed vs. infant-directed data sets and were tested on both matched and mismatched data. Results show that recognizers trained on infant-directed speech did not always exhibit better recognition performance; however, their relative loss in performance on mismatched data was significantly less severe than that of recognizers trained on adult-directed speech and presented with infant-directed test data. An analysis of the statistical distributions of a subset of phonetic classes in both data sets showed that this pattern is caused by larger class overlaps in infant-directed speech. This finding has implications for both automatic speech recognition and theories of infant speech perception. .

  18. Start/End Delays of Voiced and Unvoiced Speech Signals

    SciTech Connect

    Herrnstein, A

    1999-09-24

    Recent experiments using low power EM-radar like sensors (e.g, GEMs) have demonstrated a new method for measuring vocal fold activity and the onset times of voiced speech, as vocal fold contact begins to take place. Similarly the end time of a voiced speech segment can be measured. Secondly it appears that in most normal uses of American English speech, unvoiced-speech segments directly precede or directly follow voiced-speech segments. For many applications, it is useful to know typical duration times of these unvoiced speech segments. A corpus, assembled earlier of spoken ''Timit'' words, phrases, and sentences and recorded using simultaneously measured acoustic and EM-sensor glottal signals, from 16 male speakers, was used for this study. By inspecting the onset (or end) of unvoiced speech, using the acoustic signal, and the onset (or end) of voiced speech using the EM sensor signal, the average duration times for unvoiced segments preceding onset of vocalization were found to be 300ms, and for following segments, 500ms. An unvoiced speech period is then defined in time, first by using the onset of the EM-sensed glottal signal, as the onset-time marker for the voiced speech segment and end marker for the unvoiced segment. Then, by subtracting 300ms from the onset time mark of voicing, the unvoiced speech segment start time is found. Similarly, the times for a following unvoiced speech segment can be found. While data of this nature have proven to be useful for work in our laboratory, a great deal of additional work remains to validate such data for use with general populations of users. These procedures have been useful for applying optimal processing algorithms over time segments of unvoiced, voiced, and non-speech acoustic signals. For example, these data appear to be of use in speaker validation, in vocoding, and in denoising algorithms.

  19. Speech Research

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Several articles addressing topics in speech research are presented. The topics include: exploring the functional significance of physiological tremor: A biospectroscopic approach; differences between experienced and inexperienced listeners to deaf speech; a language-oriented view of reading and its disabilities; Phonetic factors in letter detection; categorical perception; Short-term recall by deaf signers of American sign language; a common basis for auditory sensory storage in perception and immediate memory; phonological awareness and verbal short-term memory; initiation versus execution time during manual and oral counting by stutterers; trading relations in the perception of speech by five-year-old children; the role of the strap muscles in pitch lowering; phonetic validation of distinctive features; consonants and syllable boundaires; and vowel information in postvocalic frictions.

  20. Speech processing based on short-time Fourier analysis

    SciTech Connect

    Portnoff, M.R.

    1981-06-02

    Short-time Fourier analysis (STFA) is a mathematical technique that represents nonstationary signals, such as speech, music, and seismic signals in terms of time-varying spectra. This representation provides a formalism for such intuitive notions as time-varying frequency components and pitch contours. Consequently, STFA is useful for speech analysis and speech processing. This paper shows that STFA provides a convenient technique for estimating and modifying certain perceptual parameters of speech. As an example of an application of STFA of speech, the problem of time-compression or expansion of speech, while preserving pitch and time-varying frequency content is presented.

  1. Learning Vowel Categories from Maternal Speech in Gurindji Kriol

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jones, Caroline; Meakins, Felicity; Muawiyath, Shujau

    2012-01-01

    Distributional learning is a proposal for how infants might learn early speech sound categories from acoustic input before they know many words. When categories in the input differ greatly in relative frequency and overlap in acoustic space, research in bilingual development suggests that this affects the course of development. In the present…

  2. Talker Versus Dialect Effects on Speech Intelligibility: A Symmetrical Study.

    PubMed

    McCloy, Daniel R; Wright, Richard A; Souza, Pamela E

    2015-09-01

    This study investigates the relative effects of talker-specific variation and dialect-based variation on speech intelligibility. Listeners from two dialects of American English performed speech-in-noise tasks with sentences spoken by talkers of each dialect. An initial statistical model showed no significant effects for either talker or listener dialect group, and no interaction. However, a mixed-effects regression model including several acoustic measures of the talker's speech revealed a subtle effect of talker dialect once the various acoustic dimensions were accounted for. Results are discussed in relation to other recent studies of cross-dialect intelligibility. PMID:26529902

  3. Talker versus dialect effects on speech intelligibility: a symmetrical study

    PubMed Central

    McCloy, Daniel R.; Wright, Richard A.; Souza, Pamela E.

    2014-01-01

    This study investigates the relative effects of talker-specific variation and dialect-based variation on speech intelligibility. Listeners from two dialects of American English performed speech-in-noise tasks with sentences spoken by talkers of each dialect. An initial statistical model showed no significant effects for either talker or listener dialect group, and no interaction. However, a mixed-effects regression model including several acoustic measures of the talker’s speech revealed a subtle effect of talker dialect once the various acoustic dimensions were accounted for. Results are discussed in relation to other recent studies of cross-dialect intelligibility. PMID:26529902

  4. Talker Versus Dialect Effects on Speech Intelligibility: A Symmetrical Study.

    PubMed

    McCloy, Daniel R; Wright, Richard A; Souza, Pamela E

    2015-09-01

    This study investigates the relative effects of talker-specific variation and dialect-based variation on speech intelligibility. Listeners from two dialects of American English performed speech-in-noise tasks with sentences spoken by talkers of each dialect. An initial statistical model showed no significant effects for either talker or listener dialect group, and no interaction. However, a mixed-effects regression model including several acoustic measures of the talker's speech revealed a subtle effect of talker dialect once the various acoustic dimensions were accounted for. Results are discussed in relation to other recent studies of cross-dialect intelligibility.

  5. Requirements for the evaluation of computational speech segregation systems.

    PubMed

    May, Tobias; Dau, Torsten

    2014-12-01

    Recent studies on computational speech segregation reported improved speech intelligibility in noise when estimating and applying an ideal binary mask with supervised learning algorithms. However, an important requirement for such systems in technical applications is their robustness to acoustic conditions not considered during training. This study demonstrates that the spectro-temporal noise variations that occur during training and testing determine the achievable segregation performance. In particular, such variations strongly affect the identification of acoustical features in the system associated with perceptual attributes in speech segregation. The results could help establish a framework for a systematic evaluation of future segregation systems.

  6. Communication in a noisy environment: Perception of one's own voice and speech enhancement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Le Cocq, Cecile

    Workers in noisy industrial environments are often confronted to communication problems. Lost of workers complain about not being able to communicate easily with their coworkers when they wear hearing protectors. In consequence, they tend to remove their protectors, which expose them to the risk of hearing loss. In fact this communication problem is a double one: first the hearing protectors modify one's own voice perception; second they interfere with understanding speech from others. This double problem is examined in this thesis. When wearing hearing protectors, the modification of one's own voice perception is partly due to the occlusion effect which is produced when an earplug is inserted in the car canal. This occlusion effect has two main consequences: first the physiological noises in low frequencies are better perceived, second the perception of one's own voice is modified. In order to have a better understanding of this phenomenon, the literature results are analyzed systematically, and a new method to quantify the occlusion effect is developed. Instead of stimulating the skull with a bone vibrator or asking the subject to speak as is usually done in the literature, it has been decided to excite the buccal cavity with an acoustic wave. The experiment has been designed in such a way that the acoustic wave which excites the buccal cavity does not excite the external car or the rest of the body directly. The measurement of the hearing threshold in open and occluded car has been used to quantify the subjective occlusion effect for an acoustic wave in the buccal cavity. These experimental results as well as those reported in the literature have lead to a better understanding of the occlusion effect and an evaluation of the role of each internal path from the acoustic source to the internal car. The speech intelligibility from others is altered by both the high sound levels of noisy industrial environments and the speech signal attenuation due to hearing

  7. GALLAUDET'S NEW HEARING AND SPEECH CENTER.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    FRISINA, D. ROBERT

    THIS REPROT DESCRIBES THE DESIGN OF A NEW SPEECH AND HEARING CENTER AND ITS INTEGRATION INTO THE OVERALL ARCHITECTURAL SCHEME OF THE CAMPUS. THE CIRCULAR SHAPE WAS SELECTED TO COMPLEMENT THE SURROUNDING STRUCTURES AND COMPENSATE FOR DIFFERENCES IN SITE, WHILE PROVIDING THE ACOUSTICAL ADVANTAGES OF NON-PARALLEL WALLS, AND FACILITATING TRAFFIC FLOW.…

  8. Enhancement of Electrolaryngeal Speech by Adaptive Filtering.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Espy-Wilson, Carol Y.; Chari, Venkatesh R.; MacAuslan, Joel M.; Huang, Caroline B.; Walsh, Michael J.

    1998-01-01

    A study tested the quality and intelligibility, as judged by several listeners, of four users' electrolaryngeal speech, with and without filtering to compensate for perceptually objectionable acoustic characteristics. Results indicated that an adaptive filtering technique produced a noticeable improvement in the quality of the Transcutaneous…

  9. Effects of Syntactic Expectations on Speech Segmentation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mattys, Sven L.; Melhorn, James F.; White, Laurence

    2007-01-01

    Although the effect of acoustic cues on speech segmentation has been extensively investigated, the role of higher order information (e.g., syntax) has received less attention. Here, the authors examined whether syntactic expectations based on subject-verb agreement have an effect on segmentation and whether they do so despite conflicting acoustic…

  10. Effects of Cognitive Load on Speech Recognition

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mattys, Sven L.; Wiget, Lukas

    2011-01-01

    The effect of cognitive load (CL) on speech recognition has received little attention despite the prevalence of CL in everyday life, e.g., dual-tasking. To assess the effect of CL on the interaction between lexically-mediated and acoustically-mediated processes, we measured the magnitude of the "Ganong effect" (i.e., lexical bias on phoneme…

  11. Speech Intelligibility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brand, Thomas

    Speech intelligibility (SI) is important for different fields of research, engineering and diagnostics in order to quantify very different phenomena like the quality of recordings, communication and playback devices, the reverberation of auditoria, characteristics of hearing impairment, benefit using hearing aids or combinations of these things.

  12. Speech neglect: A strange educational blind spot

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harris, Katherine Safford

    2005-09-01

    Speaking is universally acknowledged as an important human talent, yet as a topic of educated common knowledge, it is peculiarly neglected. Partly, this is a consequence of the relatively recent growth of research on speech perception, production, and development, but also a function of the way that information is sliced up by undergraduate colleges. Although the basic acoustic mechanism of vowel production was known to Helmholtz, the ability to view speech production as a physiological event is evolving even now with such techniques as fMRI. Intensive research on speech perception emerged only in the early 1930s as Fletcher and the engineers at Bell Telephone Laboratories developed the transmission of speech over telephone lines. The study of speech development was revolutionized by the papers of Eimas and his colleagues on speech perception in infants in the 1970s. Dissemination of knowledge in these fields is the responsibility of no single academic discipline. It forms a center for two departments, Linguistics, and Speech and Hearing, but in the former, there is a heavy emphasis on other aspects of language than speech and, in the latter, a focus on clinical practice. For psychologists, it is a rather minor component of a very diverse assembly of topics. I will focus on these three fields in proposing possible remedies.

  13. Speech vs. singing: infants choose happier sounds

    PubMed Central

    Corbeil, Marieve; Trehub, Sandra E.; Peretz, Isabelle

    2013-01-01

    Infants prefer speech to non-vocal sounds and to non-human vocalizations, and they prefer happy-sounding speech to neutral speech. They also exhibit an interest in singing, but there is little knowledge of their relative interest in speech and singing. The present study explored infants' attention to unfamiliar audio samples of speech and singing. In Experiment 1, infants 4–13 months of age were exposed to happy-sounding infant-directed speech vs. hummed lullabies by the same woman. They listened significantly longer to the speech, which had considerably greater acoustic variability and expressiveness, than to the lullabies. In Experiment 2, infants of comparable age who heard the lyrics of a Turkish children's song spoken vs. sung in a joyful/happy manner did not exhibit differential listening. Infants in Experiment 3 heard the happily sung lyrics of the Turkish children's song vs. a version that was spoken in an adult-directed or affectively neutral manner. They listened significantly longer to the sung version. Overall, happy voice quality rather than vocal mode (speech or singing) was the principal contributor to infant attention, regardless of age. PMID:23805119

  14. The Modulation Transfer Function for Speech Intelligibility

    PubMed Central

    Elliott, Taffeta M.; Theunissen, Frédéric E.

    2009-01-01

    We systematically determined which spectrotemporal modulations in speech are necessary for comprehension by human listeners. Speech comprehension has been shown to be robust to spectral and temporal degradations, but the specific relevance of particular degradations is arguable due to the complexity of the joint spectral and temporal information in the speech signal. We applied a novel modulation filtering technique to recorded sentences to restrict acoustic information quantitatively and to obtain a joint spectrotemporal modulation transfer function for speech comprehension, the speech MTF. For American English, the speech MTF showed the criticality of low modulation frequencies in both time and frequency. Comprehension was significantly impaired when temporal modulations <12 Hz or spectral modulations <4 cycles/kHz were removed. More specifically, the MTF was bandpass in temporal modulations and low-pass in spectral modulations: temporal modulations from 1 to 7 Hz and spectral modulations <1 cycles/kHz were the most important. We evaluated the importance of spectrotemporal modulations for vocal gender identification and found a different region of interest: removing spectral modulations between 3 and 7 cycles/kHz significantly increases gender misidentifications of female speakers. The determination of the speech MTF furnishes an additional method for producing speech signals with reduced bandwidth but high intelligibility. Such compression could be used for audio applications such as file compression or noise removal and for clinical applications such as signal processing for cochlear implants. PMID:19266016

  15. Brain-Computer Interfaces for Speech Communication

    PubMed Central

    Brumberg, Jonathan S.; Nieto-Castanon, Alfonso; Kennedy, Philip R.; Guenther, Frank H.

    2010-01-01

    This paper briefly reviews current silent speech methodologies for normal and disabled individuals. Current techniques utilizing electromyographic (EMG) recordings of vocal tract movements are useful for physically healthy individuals but fail for tetraplegic individuals who do not have accurate voluntary control over the speech articulators. Alternative methods utilizing EMG from other body parts (e.g., hand, arm, or facial muscles) or electroencephalography (EEG) can provide capable silent communication to severely paralyzed users, though current interfaces are extremely slow relative to normal conversation rates and require constant attention to a computer screen that provides visual feedback and/or cueing. We present a novel approach to the problem of silent speech via an intracortical microelectrode brain computer interface (BCI) to predict intended speech information directly from the activity of neurons involved in speech production. The predicted speech is synthesized and acoustically fed back to the user with a delay under 50 ms. We demonstrate that the Neurotrophic Electrode used in the BCI is capable of providing useful neural recordings for over 4 years, a necessary property for BCIs that need to remain viable over the lifespan of the user. Other design considerations include neural decoding techniques based on previous research involving BCIs for computer cursor or robotic arm control via prediction of intended movement kinematics from motor cortical signals in monkeys and humans. Initial results from a study of continuous speech production with instantaneous acoustic feedback show the BCI user was able to improve his control over an artificial speech synthesizer both within and across recording sessions. The success of this initial trial validates the potential of the intracortical microelectrode-based approach for providing a speech prosthesis that can allow much more rapid communication rates. PMID:20204164

  16. Brain-Computer Interfaces for Speech Communication.

    PubMed

    Brumberg, Jonathan S; Nieto-Castanon, Alfonso; Kennedy, Philip R; Guenther, Frank H

    2010-04-01

    This paper briefly reviews current silent speech methodologies for normal and disabled individuals. Current techniques utilizing electromyographic (EMG) recordings of vocal tract movements are useful for physically healthy individuals but fail for tetraplegic individuals who do not have accurate voluntary control over the speech articulators. Alternative methods utilizing EMG from other body parts (e.g., hand, arm, or facial muscles) or electroencephalography (EEG) can provide capable silent communication to severely paralyzed users, though current interfaces are extremely slow relative to normal conversation rates and require constant attention to a computer screen that provides visual feedback and/or cueing. We present a novel approach to the problem of silent speech via an intracortical microelectrode brain computer interface (BCI) to predict intended speech information directly from the activity of neurons involved in speech production. The predicted speech is synthesized and acoustically fed back to the user with a delay under 50 ms. We demonstrate that the Neurotrophic Electrode used in the BCI is capable of providing useful neural recordings for over 4 years, a necessary property for BCIs that need to remain viable over the lifespan of the user. Other design considerations include neural decoding techniques based on previous research involving BCIs for computer cursor or robotic arm control via prediction of intended movement kinematics from motor cortical signals in monkeys and humans. Initial results from a study of continuous speech production with instantaneous acoustic feedback show the BCI user was able to improve his control over an artificial speech synthesizer both within and across recording sessions. The success of this initial trial validates the potential of the intracortical microelectrode-based approach for providing a speech prosthesis that can allow much more rapid communication rates.

  17. Intensive Speech and Language Therapy for Older Children with Cerebral Palsy: A Systems Approach

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pennington, Lindsay; Miller, Nick; Robson, Sheila; Steen, Nick

    2010-01-01

    Aim: To investigate whether speech therapy using a speech systems approach to controlling breath support, phonation, and speech rate can increase the speech intelligibility of children with dysarthria and cerebral palsy (CP). Method: Sixteen children with dysarthria and CP participated in a modified time series design. Group characteristics were…

  18. Neural Oscillations Carry Speech Rhythm through to Comprehension

    PubMed Central

    Peelle, Jonathan E.; Davis, Matthew H.

    2012-01-01

    A key feature of speech is the quasi-regular rhythmic information contained in its slow amplitude modulations. In this article we review the information conveyed by speech rhythm, and the role of ongoing brain oscillations in listeners’ processing of this content. Our starting point is the fact that speech is inherently temporal, and that rhythmic information conveyed by the amplitude envelope contains important markers for place and manner of articulation, segmental information, and speech rate. Behavioral studies demonstrate that amplitude envelope information is relied upon by listeners and plays a key role in speech intelligibility. Extending behavioral findings, data from neuroimaging – particularly electroencephalography (EEG) and magnetoencephalography (MEG) – point to phase locking by ongoing cortical oscillations to low-frequency information (~4–8 Hz) in the speech envelope. This phase modulation effectively encodes a prediction of when important events (such as stressed syllables) are likely to occur, and acts to increase sensitivity to these relevant acoustic cues. We suggest a framework through which such neural entrainment to speech rhythm can explain effects of speech rate on word and segment perception (i.e., that the perception of phonemes and words in connected speech is influenced by preceding speech rate). Neuroanatomically, acoustic amplitude modulations are processed largely bilaterally in auditory cortex, with intelligible speech resulting in differential recruitment of left-hemisphere regions. Notable among these is lateral anterior temporal cortex, which we propose functions in a domain-general fashion to support ongoing memory and integration of meaningful input. Together, the reviewed evidence suggests that low-frequency oscillations in the acoustic speech signal form the foundation of a rhythmic hierarchy supporting spoken language, mirrored by phase-locked oscillations in the human brain. PMID:22973251

  19. Speech perception as an active cognitive process

    PubMed Central

    Heald, Shannon L. M.; Nusbaum, Howard C.

    2014-01-01

    One view of speech perception is that acoustic signals are transformed into representations for pattern matching to determine linguistic structure. This process can be taken as a statistical pattern-matching problem, assuming realtively stable linguistic categories are characterized by neural representations related to auditory properties of speech that can be compared to speech input. This kind of pattern matching can be termed a passive process which implies rigidity of processing with few demands on cognitive processing. An alternative view is that speech recognition, even in early stages, is an active process in which speech analysis is attentionally guided. Note that this does not mean consciously guided but that information-contingent changes in early auditory encoding can occur as a function of context and experience. Active processing assumes that attention, plasticity, and listening goals are important in considering how listeners cope with adverse circumstances that impair hearing by masking noise in the environment or hearing loss. Although theories of speech perception have begun to incorporate some active processing, they seldom treat early speech encoding as plastic and attentionally guided. Recent research has suggested that speech perception is the product of both feedforward and feedback interactions between a number of brain regions that include descending projections perhaps as far downstream as the cochlea. It is important to understand how the ambiguity of the speech signal and constraints of context dynamically determine cognitive resources recruited during perception including focused attention, learning, and working memory. Theories of speech perception need to go beyond the current corticocentric approach in order to account for the intrinsic dynamics of the auditory encoding of speech. In doing so, this may provide new insights into ways in which hearing disorders and loss may be treated either through augementation or therapy. PMID

  20. Lexical effects on speech production and intelligibility in Parkinson's disease

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chiu, Yi-Fang

    Individuals with Parkinson's disease (PD) often have speech deficits that lead to reduced speech intelligibility. Previous research provides a rich database regarding the articulatory deficits associated with PD including restricted vowel space (Skodda, Visser, & Schlegel, 2011) and flatter formant transitions (Tjaden & Wilding, 2004; Walsh & Smith, 2012). However, few studies consider the effect of higher level structural variables of word usage frequency and the number of similar sounding words (i.e. neighborhood density) on lower level articulation or on listeners' perception of dysarthric speech. The purpose of the study is to examine the interaction of lexical properties and speech articulation as measured acoustically in speakers with PD and healthy controls (HC) and the effect of lexical properties on the perception of their speech. Individuals diagnosed with PD and age-matched healthy controls read sentences with words that varied in word frequency and neighborhood density. Acoustic analysis was performed to compare second formant transitions in diphthongs, an indicator of the dynamics of tongue movement during speech production, across different lexical characteristics. Young listeners transcribed the spoken sentences and the transcription accuracy was compared across lexical conditions. The acoustic results indicate that both PD and HC speakers adjusted their articulation based on lexical properties but the PD group had significant reductions in second formant transitions compared to HC. Both groups of speakers increased second formant transitions for words with low frequency and low density, but the lexical effect is diphthong dependent. The change in second formant slope was limited in the PD group when the required formant movement for the diphthong is small. The data from listeners' perception of the speech by PD and HC show that listeners identified high frequency words with greater accuracy suggesting the use of lexical knowledge during the

  1. Speech preparation in adults with persistent developmental stuttering.

    PubMed

    Mock, Jeffrey R; Foundas, Anne L; Golob, Edward J

    2015-10-01

    Motor efference copy conveys movement information to sensory areas before and during vocalization. We hypothesized speech preparation would modulate auditory processing, via motor efference copy, differently in men who stutter (MWS) vs. fluent adults. Participants (n=12/group) had EEG recorded during a cue-target paradigm with two conditions: speech which allowed for speech preparation, while a control condition did not. Acoustic stimuli probed auditory responsiveness between the cue and target. MWS had longer vocal reaction times (p<0.01) when the cue-target differed (10% of trials), suggesting a difficulty of rapidly updating their speech plans. Acoustic probes elicited a negative slow wave indexing motor efference copy that was smaller in MWS vs. fluent adults (p<0.03). Current density responses in MWS showed smaller left prefrontal responses and auditory responses that were delayed and correlated to stuttering rate. Taken together, the results provide insight into the cortical mechanisms underlying atypical speech planning and dysfluencies in MWS.

  2. Speech research: Studies on the nature of speech, instrumentation for its investigation, and practical applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liberman, A. M.

    1982-03-01

    This report is one of a regular series on the status and progress of studies on the nature of speech, instrumentation for its investigation and practical applications. Manuscripts cover the following topics: Speech perception and memory coding in relation to reading ability; The use of orthographic structure by deaf adults: Recognition of finger-spelled letters; Exploring the information support for speech; The stream of speech; Using the acoustic signal to make inferences about place and duration of tongue-palate contact. Patterns of human interlimb coordination emerge from the the properties of nonlinear limit cycle oscillatory processes: Theory and data; Motor control: Which themes do we orchestrate? Exploring the nature of motor control in Down's syndrome; Periodicity and auditory memory: A pilot study; Reading skill and language skill: On the role of sign order and morphological structure in memory for American Sign Language sentences; Perception of nasal consonants with special reference to Catalan; and Speech production Characteristics of the hearing impaired.

  3. Speech and noise levels for predicting the degree of speech security

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bradley, John S.; Gover, Bradford N.

    2005-09-01

    A meeting room is speech secure when it is difficult or impossible for an eavesdropper to overhear speech from within. The degree of security could range from less stringent conditions of being barely able to understand a few words from the meeting room, to higher levels, where transmitted speech would be completely inaudible. This paper reports on measurements to determine the statistical distribution of speech levels in meeting rooms and the distribution of ambient noise levels just outside meeting rooms. To select the required transmission characteristics for a meeting room wall, one would first decide on an acceptable level of risk, in terms of the probability of a speech security lapse occurring. This leads to the selection of a combination of a speech level in the meeting room and a noise level nearby that would occur together with this probability. The combination of appropriate estimates of meeting room speech levels and nearby ambient noise levels, together with the sound transmission characteristics of the intervening partition, makes it possible to calculate signal/noise ratio indices related to speech security [J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 116(6), 3480-3490 (2004)]. The value of these indices indicates if adequate speech security will be achieved.

  4. Cortical speech and non-speech discrimination in relation to cognitive measures in preschool children.

    PubMed

    Kuuluvainen, Soila; Alku, Paavo; Makkonen, Tommi; Lipsanen, Jari; Kujala, Teija

    2016-03-01

    Effective speech sound discrimination at preschool age is known to be a prerequisite for the development of language skills and later literacy acquisition. However, the speech specificity of cortical discrimination skills in small children is currently not known, as previous research has either studied speech functions without comparison with non-speech sounds, or used much simpler sounds such as harmonic or sinusoidal tones as control stimuli. We investigated the cortical discrimination of five syllable features (consonant, vowel, vowel duration, fundamental frequency, and intensity), covering both segmental and prosodic phonetic changes, and their acoustically matched non-speech counterparts in 63 6-year-old typically developed children, by using a multi-feature mismatch negativity (MMN) paradigm. Each of the five investigated features elicited a unique pattern of differentiating negativities: an early differentiating negativity, MMN, and a late differentiating negativity. All five studied features showed speech-related enhancement of at least one of these responses, suggesting experience-related neural commitment in both phonetic and prosodic speech processing. In addition, the cognitive performance and language skills of the children were tested extensively. The speech-related neural enhancement was positively associated with the level of performance in several neurocognitive tasks, indicating a relationship between successful establishment of cortical memory traces for speech and enhanced cognitive functioning. The results contribute to the understanding of typical developmental trajectories of linguistic vs. non-linguistic auditory skills, and provide a reference for future studies investigating deficits in language-related disorders at preschool age.

  5. Cortical speech and non-speech discrimination in relation to cognitive measures in preschool children.

    PubMed

    Kuuluvainen, Soila; Alku, Paavo; Makkonen, Tommi; Lipsanen, Jari; Kujala, Teija

    2016-03-01

    Effective speech sound discrimination at preschool age is known to be a prerequisite for the development of language skills and later literacy acquisition. However, the speech specificity of cortical discrimination skills in small children is currently not known, as previous research has either studied speech functions without comparison with non-speech sounds, or used much simpler sounds such as harmonic or sinusoidal tones as control stimuli. We investigated the cortical discrimination of five syllable features (consonant, vowel, vowel duration, fundamental frequency, and intensity), covering both segmental and prosodic phonetic changes, and their acoustically matched non-speech counterparts in 63 6-year-old typically developed children, by using a multi-feature mismatch negativity (MMN) paradigm. Each of the five investigated features elicited a unique pattern of differentiating negativities: an early differentiating negativity, MMN, and a late differentiating negativity. All five studied features showed speech-related enhancement of at least one of these responses, suggesting experience-related neural commitment in both phonetic and prosodic speech processing. In addition, the cognitive performance and language skills of the children were tested extensively. The speech-related neural enhancement was positively associated with the level of performance in several neurocognitive tasks, indicating a relationship between successful establishment of cortical memory traces for speech and enhanced cognitive functioning. The results contribute to the understanding of typical developmental trajectories of linguistic vs. non-linguistic auditory skills, and provide a reference for future studies investigating deficits in language-related disorders at preschool age. PMID:26647120

  6. Melodic contour identification and sentence recognition using sung speech

    PubMed Central

    Crew, Joseph D.; Galvin, John J.; Fu, Qian-Jie

    2015-01-01

    For bimodal cochlear implant users, acoustic and electric hearing has been shown to contribute differently to speech and music perception. However, differences in test paradigms and stimuli in speech and music testing can make it difficult to assess the relative contributions of each device. To address these concerns, the Sung Speech Corpus (SSC) was created. The SSC contains 50 monosyllable words sung over an octave range and can be used to test both speech and music perception using the same stimuli. Here SSC data are presented with normal hearing listeners and any advantage of musicianship is examined. PMID:26428838

  7. Speech communications in noise

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1984-01-01

    The physical characteristics of speech, the methods of speech masking measurement, and the effects of noise on speech communication are investigated. Topics include the speech signal and intelligibility, the effects of noise on intelligibility, the articulation index, and various devices for evaluating speech systems.

  8. Measuring glottal activity during voiced speech using a tuned electromagnetic resonating collar sensor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brown, D. R., III; Keenaghan, K.; Desimini, S.

    2005-11-01

    Non-acoustic speech sensors can be employed to obtain measurements of one or more aspects of the speech production process, such as glottal activity, even in the presence of background noise. These sensors have a long history of clinical applications and have also recently been applied to the problem of denoising speech signals recorded in acoustically noisy environments (Ng et al 2000 Proc. Int. Conf. on Acoustics, Speech, and Signal Processing (ICASSP) (Istanbul, Turkey) vol 1, pp 229-32). Recently, researchers developed a new non-acoustic speech sensor based primarily on a tuned electromagnetic resonator collar (TERC) (Brown et al 2004 Meas. Sci. Technol. 15 1291). The TERC sensor measures glottal activity by sensing small changes in the dielectric properties of the glottis that result from voiced speech. This paper builds on the seminal work in Brown et al (2004). The primary contributions of this paper are (i) a description of a new single-mode TERC sensor design addressing the comfort and complexity issues of the original sensor, (ii) a complete description of new external interface systems used to obtain long-duration recordings from the TERC sensor and (iii) more extensive experimental results and analysis for the single-mode TERC sensor including spectrograms of speech containing both voiced and unvoiced speech segments in quiet and acoustically noisy environments. The experimental results demonstrate that the single-mode TERC sensor is able to detect glottal activity up to the fourth harmonic and is also insensitive to acoustic background noise.

  9. [Acoustic characteristics of classrooms].

    PubMed

    Koszarny, Zbigniew; Chyla, Andrzej

    2003-01-01

    Quality and usefulness of school rooms for transmission of verbal information depends on the two basic parameters: form and quantity of the reverberation time, and profitable line measurements of school rooms from the acoustic point of view. An analysis of the above-mentioned parameters in 48 class rooms and two gymnasiums in schools, which were built in different periods, shows that the most important problem is connected with too long reverberation time and inappropriate acoustic proportions. In schools built in the 1970s, the length of reverberation time is mostly within a low frequency band, while in schools built contemporarily, the maximum length of disappearance time takes place in a quite wide band of 250-2000 Hz. This exceeds optimal values for that kind of rooms at least twice, and five times in the newly built school. A long reverberation time is connected with a low acoustic absorption of school rooms. Moreover, school rooms are characterised by inappropriate acoustic proportions. The classrooms, in their relation to the height, are too long and too wide. It is connected with deterioration of the transmission of verbal information. The data show that this transmission is unequal. Automatically, it leads to a speech disturbance and difficulties with understanding. There is the need for adaptation of school rooms through increase of an acoustic absorption.

  10. The evolution of speech: vision, rhythm, cooperation

    PubMed Central

    Ghazanfar, Asif A.; Takahashi, Daniel Y.

    2014-01-01

    A full account of human speech evolution must consider its multisensory, rhythmic, and cooperative characteristics. Humans, apes and monkeys recognize the correspondence between vocalizations and the associated facial postures and gain behavioral benefits from them. Some monkey vocalizations even have a speech-like acoustic rhythmicity, yet they lack the concomitant rhythmic facial motion that speech exhibits. We review data showing that facial expressions like lip-smacking may be an ancestral expression that was later linked to vocal output in order to produce rhythmic audiovisual speech. Finally, we argue that human vocal cooperation (turn-taking) may have arisen through a combination of volubility and prosociality, and provide comparative evidence from one species to support this hypothesis. PMID:25048821

  11. Combined Electric and Contralateral Acoustic Hearing: Word and Sentence Recognition with Bimodal Hearing

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gifford, Rene H.; Dorman, Michael F.; McKarns, Sharon A.; Spahr, Anthony J.

    2007-01-01

    Purpose: The authors assessed whether (a) a full-insertion cochlear implant would provide a higher level of speech understanding than bilateral low-frequency acoustic hearing, (b) contralateral acoustic hearing would add to the speech understanding provided by the implant, and (c) the level of performance achieved with electric stimulation plus…

  12. The Auditory-Brainstem Response to Continuous, Non-repetitive Speech Is Modulated by the Speech Envelope and Reflects Speech Processing

    PubMed Central

    Reichenbach, Chagit S.; Braiman, Chananel; Schiff, Nicholas D.; Hudspeth, A. J.; Reichenbach, Tobias

    2016-01-01

    The auditory-brainstem response (ABR) to short and simple acoustical signals is an important clinical tool used to diagnose the integrity of the brainstem. The ABR is also employed to investigate the auditory brainstem in a multitude of tasks related to hearing, such as processing speech or selectively focusing on one speaker in a noisy environment. Such research measures the response of the brainstem to short speech signals such as vowels or words. Because the voltage signal of the ABR has a tiny amplitude, several hundred to a thousand repetitions of the acoustic signal are needed to obtain a reliable response. The large number of repetitions poses a challenge to assessing cognitive functions due to neural adaptation. Here we show that continuous, non-repetitive speech, lasting several minutes, may be employed to measure the ABR. Because the speech is not repeated during the experiment, the precise temporal form of the ABR cannot be determined. We show, however, that important structural features of the ABR can nevertheless be inferred. In particular, the brainstem responds at the fundamental frequency of the speech signal, and this response is modulated by the envelope of the voiced parts of speech. We accordingly introduce a novel measure that assesses the ABR as modulated by the speech envelope, at the fundamental frequency of speech and at the characteristic latency of the response. This measure has a high signal-to-noise ratio and can hence be employed effectively to measure the ABR to continuous speech. We use this novel measure to show that the ABR is weaker to intelligible speech than to unintelligible, time-reversed speech. The methods presented here can be employed for further research on speech processing in the auditory brainstem and can lead to the development of future clinical diagnosis of brainstem function. PMID:27303286

  13. Analysis of speech and tongue motion in normal and post-glossectomy speaker using cine MRI

    PubMed Central

    Ha, Jinhee; Sung, Iel-yong; Son, Jang-ho; Stone, Maureen; Ord, Robert; Cho, Yeong-cheol

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Objective Since the tongue is the oral structure responsible for mastication, pronunciation, and swallowing functions, patients who undergo glossectomy can be affected in various aspects of these functions. The vowel /i/ uses the tongue shape, whereas /u/ uses tongue and lip shapes. The purpose of this study is to investigate the morphological changes of the tongue and the adaptation of pronunciation using cine MRI for speech of patients who undergo glossectomy. Material and Methods Twenty-three controls (11 males and 12 females) and 13 patients (eight males and five females) volunteered to participate in the experiment. The patients underwent glossectomy surgery for T1 or T2 lateral lingual tumors. The speech tasks “a souk” and “a geese” were spoken by all subjects providing data for the vowels /u/ and /i/. Cine MRI and speech acoustics were recorded and measured to compare the changes in the tongue with vowel acoustics after surgery. 2D measurements were made of the interlip distance, tongue-palate distance, tongue position (anterior-posterior and superior-inferior), tongue height on the left and right sides, and pharynx size. Vowel formants Fl, F2, and F3 were measured. Results The patients had significantly lower F2/Fl ratios (F=5.911, p=0.018), and lower F3/F1 ratios that approached significance. This was seen primarily in the /u/ data. Patients had flatter tongue shapes than controls with a greater effect seen in /u/ than /i/. Conclusion The patients showed complex adaptation motion in order to preserve the acoustic integrity of the vowels, and the tongue modified cavity size relationships to maintain the value of the formant frequencies. PMID:27812617

  14. Headphone localization of speech stimuli

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Begault, Durand R.; Wenzel, Elizabeth M.

    1991-01-01

    Recently, three dimensional acoustic display systems have been developed that synthesize virtual sound sources over headphones based on filtering by Head-Related Transfer Functions (HRTFs), the direction-dependent spectral changes caused primarily by the outer ears. Here, 11 inexperienced subjects judged the apparent spatial location of headphone-presented speech stimuli filtered with non-individualized HRTFs. About half of the subjects 'pulled' their judgements toward either the median or the lateral-vertical planes, and estimates were almost always elevated. Individual differences were pronounced for the distance judgements; 15 to 46 percent of stimuli were heard inside the head with the shortest estimates near the median plane. The results infer that most listeners can obtain useful azimuth information from speech stimuli filtered by nonindividualized RTFs. Measurements of localization error and reversal rates are comparable with a previous study that used broadband noise stimuli.

  15. Hidden Markov models in automatic speech recognition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wrzoskowicz, Adam

    1993-11-01

    This article describes a method for constructing an automatic speech recognition system based on hidden Markov models (HMMs). The author discusses the basic concepts of HMM theory and the application of these models to the analysis and recognition of speech signals. The author provides algorithms which make it possible to train the ASR system and recognize signals on the basis of distinct stochastic models of selected speech sound classes. The author describes the specific components of the system and the procedures used to model and recognize speech. The author discusses problems associated with the choice of optimal signal detection and parameterization characteristics and their effect on the performance of the system. The author presents different options for the choice of speech signal segments and their consequences for the ASR process. The author gives special attention to the use of lexical, syntactic, and semantic information for the purpose of improving the quality and efficiency of the system. The author also describes an ASR system developed by the Speech Acoustics Laboratory of the IBPT PAS. The author discusses the results of experiments on the effect of noise on the performance of the ASR system and describes methods of constructing HMM's designed to operate in a noisy environment. The author also describes a language for human-robot communications which was defined as a complex multilevel network from an HMM model of speech sounds geared towards Polish inflections. The author also added mandatory lexical and syntactic rules to the system for its communications vocabulary.

  16. Production and perception of clear speech in Croatian and English

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smiljanić, Rajka; Bradlow, Ann R.

    2005-09-01

    Previous research has established that naturally produced English clear speech is more intelligible than English conversational speech. The major goal of this paper was to establish the presence of the clear speech effect in production and perception of a language other than English, namely Croatian. A systematic investigation of the conversational-to-clear speech transformations across languages with different phonological properties (e.g., large versus small vowel inventory) can provide a window into the interaction of general auditory-perceptual and phonological, structural factors that contribute to the high intelligibility of clear speech. The results of this study showed that naturally produced clear speech is a distinct, listener-oriented, intelligibility-enhancing mode of speech production in both languages. Furthermore, the acoustic-phonetic features of the conversational-to-clear speech transformation revealed cross-language similarities in clear speech production strategies. In both languages, talkers exhibited a decrease in speaking rate and an increase in pitch range, as well as an expansion of the vowel space. Notably, the findings of this study showed equivalent vowel space expansion in English and Croatian clear speech, despite the difference in vowel inventory size across the two languages, suggesting that the extent of vowel contrast enhancement in hyperarticulated clear speech is independent of vowel inventory size.

  17. Perception and the temporal properties of speech

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gordon, Peter C.

    1991-11-01

    Four experiments addressing the role of attention in phonetic perception are reported. The first experiment shows that the relative importance of two cues to the voicing distinction changes when subjects must perform an arithmetic distractor task at the same time as identifying a speech stimulus. The voice onset time cue loses phonetic significance when subjects are distracted, while the F0 onset frequency cue does not. The second experiment shows a similar pattern for two cues to the distinction between the vowels /i/ (as in 'beat') and /I/ (as in 'bit'). Together these experiments indicate that careful attention to speech perception is necessary for strong acoustic cues to achieve their full phonetic impact, while weaker acoustic cues achieve their full phonetic impact without close attention. Experiment 3 shows that this pattern is obtained when the distractor task places little demand on verbal short term memory. Experiment 4 provides a large data set for testing formal models of the role of attention in speech perception. Attention is shown to influence the signal to noise ratio in phonetic encoding. This principle is instantiated in a network model in which the role of attention is to reduce noise in the phonetic encoding of acoustic cues. Implications of this work for understanding speech perception and general theories of the role of attention in perception are discussed.

  18. Speech Motor Correlates of Treatment-Related Changes in Stuttering Severity and Speech Naturalness

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tasko, Stephen M.; McClean, Michael D.; Runyan, Charles M.

    2007-01-01

    Participants of stuttering treatment programs provide an opportunity to evaluate persons who stutter as they demonstrate varying levels of fluency. Identifying physiologic correlates of altered fluency levels may lead to insights about mechanisms of speech disfluency. This study examined respiratory, orofacial kinematic and acoustic measures in 35…

  19. Is infant-directed speech prosody a result of the vocal expression of emotion?

    PubMed

    Trainor, L J; Austin, C M; Desjardins, R N

    2000-05-01

    Many studies have found that infant-directed (ID) speech has higher pitch, has more exaggerated pitch contours, has a larger pitch range, has a slower tempo, and is more rhythmic than typical adult-directed (AD) speech. We show that the ID speech style reflects free vocal expression of emotion to infants, in comparison with more inhibited expression of emotion in typical AD speech. When AD speech does express emotion, the same acoustic features are used as in ID speech. We recorded ID and AD samples of speech expressing love-comfort, fear, and surprise. The emotions were equally discriminable in the ID and AD samples. Acoustic analyses showed few differences between the ID and AD samples, but robust differences across the emotions. We conclude that ID prosody itself is not special. What is special is the widespread expression of emotion to infants in comparison with the more inhibited expression of emotion in typical adult interactions.

  20. Discriminating between auditory and motor cortical responses to speech and nonspeech mouth sounds.

    PubMed

    Agnew, Zarinah K; McGettigan, Carolyn; Scott, Sophie K

    2011-12-01

    Several perspectives on speech perception posit a central role for the representation of articulations in speech comprehension, supported by evidence for premotor activation when participants listen to speech. However, no experiments have directly tested whether motor responses mirror the profile of selective auditory cortical responses to native speech sounds or whether motor and auditory areas respond in different ways to sounds. We used fMRI to investigate cortical responses to speech and nonspeech mouth (ingressive click) sounds. Speech sounds activated bilateral superior temporal gyri more than other sounds, a profile not seen in motor and premotor cortices. These results suggest that there are qualitative differences in the ways that temporal and motor areas are activated by speech and click sounds: Anterior temporal lobe areas are sensitive to the acoustic or phonetic properties, whereas motor responses may show more generalized responses to the acoustic stimuli.

  1. Human speech articulator measurements using low power, 2GHz Homodyne sensors

    SciTech Connect

    Barnes, T; Burnett, G C; Holzrichter, J F

    1999-06-29

    Very low power, short-range microwave ''radar-like'' sensors can measure the motions and vibrations of internal human speech articulators as speech is produced. In these animate (and also in inanimate acoustic systems) microwave sensors can measure vibration information associated with excitation sources and other interfaces. These data, together with the corresponding acoustic data, enable the calculation of system transfer functions. This information appears to be useful for a surprisingly wide range of applications such as speech coding and recognition, speaker or object identification, speech and musical instrument synthesis, noise cancellation, and other applications.

  2. Acoustic and Perceptual Characteristics of Vowels Produced during Simultaneous Communication

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schiavetti, Nicholas; Metz, Dale Evan; Whitehead, Robert L.; Brown, Shannon; Borges, Janie; Rivera, Sara; Schultz, Christine

    2004-01-01

    This study investigated the acoustical and perceptual characteristics of vowels in speech produced during simultaneous communication (SC). Twelve normal hearing, experienced sign language users were recorded under SC and speech alone (SA) conditions speaking a set of sentences containing monosyllabic words designed for measurement of vowel…

  3. On-Line Acoustic and Semantic Interpretation of Talker Information

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Creel, Sarah C.; Tumlin, Melanie A.

    2011-01-01

    Recent work demonstrates that listeners utilize talker-specific information in the speech signal to inform real-time language processing. However, there are multiple representational levels at which this may take place. Listeners might use acoustic cues in the speech signal to access the talker's identity and information about what they tend to…

  4. Acoustic Correlates of Emphatic Stress in Central Catalan

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nadeu, Marianna; Hualde, Jose Ignacio

    2012-01-01

    A common feature of public speech in Catalan is the placement of prominence on lexically unstressed syllables ("emphatic stress"). This paper presents an acoustic study of radio speech data. Instances of emphatic stress were perceptually identified. Within-word comparison between vowels with emphatic stress and vowels with primary lexical stress…

  5. Assessing the acoustical climate of underground stations.

    PubMed

    Nowicka, Elzbieta

    2007-01-01

    Designing a proper acoustical environment--indispensable to speech recognition--in long enclosures is difficult. Although there is some literature on the acoustical conditions in underground stations, there is still little information about methods that make estimation of correct reverberation conditions possible. This paper discusses the assessment of the reverberation conditions of underground stations. A comparison of the measurements of reverberation time in Warsaw's underground stations with calculated data proves there are divergences between measured and calculated early decay time values, especially for long source-receiver distances. Rapid speech transmission index values for measured stations are also presented. PMID:18082025

  6. Voice Quality Modelling for Expressive Speech Synthesis

    PubMed Central

    Socoró, Joan Claudi

    2014-01-01

    This paper presents the perceptual experiments that were carried out in order to validate the methodology of transforming expressive speech styles using voice quality (VoQ) parameters modelling, along with the well-known prosody (F0, duration, and energy), from a neutral style into a number of expressive ones. The main goal was to validate the usefulness of VoQ in the enhancement of expressive synthetic speech in terms of speech quality and style identification. A harmonic plus noise model (HNM) was used to modify VoQ and prosodic parameters that were extracted from an expressive speech corpus. Perception test results indicated the improvement of obtained expressive speech styles using VoQ modelling along with prosodic characteristics. PMID:24587738

  7. Speech recognition and understanding

    SciTech Connect

    Vintsyuk, T.K.

    1983-05-01

    This article discusses the automatic processing of speech signals with the aim of finding a sequence of works (speech recognition) or a concept (speech understanding) being transmitted by the speech signal. The goal of the research is to develop an automatic typewriter that will automatically edit and type text under voice control. A dynamic programming method is proposed in which all possible class signals are stored, after which the presented signal is compared to all the stored signals during the recognition phase. Topics considered include element-by-element recognition of words of speech, learning speech recognition, phoneme-by-phoneme speech recognition, the recognition of connected speech, understanding connected speech, and prospects for designing speech recognition and understanding systems. An application of the composition dynamic programming method for the solution of basic problems in the recognition and understanding of speech is presented.

  8. Vocal tract resonances in speech, singing, and playing musical instruments.

    PubMed

    Wolfe, Joe; Garnier, Maëva; Smith, John

    2009-01-01

    IN BOTH THE VOICE AND MUSICAL WIND INSTRUMENTS, A VALVE (VOCAL FOLDS, LIPS, OR REED) LIES BETWEEN AN UPSTREAM AND DOWNSTREAM DUCT: trachea and vocal tract for the voice; vocal tract and bore for the instrument. Examining the structural similarities and functional differences gives insight into their operation and the duct-valve interactions. In speech and singing, vocal tract resonances usually determine the spectral envelope and usually have a smaller influence on the operating frequency. The resonances are important not only for the phonemic information they produce, but also because of their contribution to voice timbre, loudness, and efficiency. The role of the tract resonances is usually different in brass and some woodwind instruments, where they modify and to some extent compete or collaborate with resonances of the instrument to control the vibration of a reed or the player's lips, andor the spectrum of air flow into the instrument. We give a brief overview of oscillator mechanisms and vocal tract acoustics. We discuss recent and current research on how the acoustical resonances of the vocal tract are involved in singing and the playing of musical wind instruments. Finally, we compare techniques used in determining tract resonances and suggest some future developments.

  9. Vocal tract resonances in speech, singing, and playing musical instruments

    PubMed Central

    Wolfe, Joe; Garnier, Maëva; Smith, John

    2009-01-01

    In both the voice and musical wind instruments, a valve (vocal folds, lips, or reed) lies between an upstream and downstream duct: trachea and vocal tract for the voice; vocal tract and bore for the instrument. Examining the structural similarities and functional differences gives insight into their operation and the duct-valve interactions. In speech and singing, vocal tract resonances usually determine the spectral envelope and usually have a smaller influence on the operating frequency. The resonances are important not only for the phonemic information they produce, but also because of their contribution to voice timbre, loudness, and efficiency. The role of the tract resonances is usually different in brass and some woodwind instruments, where they modify and to some extent compete or collaborate with resonances of the instrument to control the vibration of a reed or the player’s lips, and∕or the spectrum of air flow into the instrument. We give a brief overview of oscillator mechanisms and vocal tract acoustics. We discuss recent and current research on how the acoustical resonances of the vocal tract are involved in singing and the playing of musical wind instruments. Finally, we compare techniques used in determining tract resonances and suggest some future developments. PMID:19649157

  10. Acoustical standards in engineering acoustics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burkhard, Mahlon D.

    2001-05-01

    The Engineering Acoustics Technical Committee is concerned with the evolution and improvement of acoustical techniques and apparatus, and with the promotion of new applications of acoustics. As cited in the Membership Directory and Handbook (2002), the interest areas include transducers and arrays; underwater acoustic systems; acoustical instrumentation and monitoring; applied sonics, promotion of useful effects, information gathering and transmission; audio engineering; acoustic holography and acoustic imaging; acoustic signal processing (equipment and techniques); and ultrasound and infrasound. Evident connections between engineering and standards are needs for calibration, consistent terminology, uniform presentation of data, reference levels, or design targets for product development. Thus for the acoustical engineer standards are both a tool for practices, for communication, and for comparison of his efforts with those of others. Development of many standards depends on knowledge of the way products are put together for the market place and acoustical engineers provide important input to the development of standards. Acoustical engineers and members of the Engineering Acoustics arm of the Society both benefit from and contribute to the Acoustical Standards of the Acoustical Society.

  11. Top-Down Influences of Written Text on Perceived Clarity of Degraded Speech

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    An unresolved question is how the reported clarity of degraded speech is enhanced when listeners have prior knowledge of speech content. One account of this phenomenon proposes top-down modulation of early acoustic processing by higher-level linguistic knowledge. Alternative, strictly bottom-up accounts argue that acoustic information and higher-level knowledge are combined at a late decision stage without modulating early acoustic processing. Here we tested top-down and bottom-up accounts using written text to manipulate listeners’ knowledge of speech content. The effect of written text on the reported clarity of noise-vocoded speech was most pronounced when text was presented before (rather than after) speech (Experiment 1). Fine-grained manipulation of the onset asynchrony between text and speech revealed that this effect declined when text was presented more than 120 ms after speech onset (Experiment 2). Finally, the influence of written text was found to arise from phonological (rather than lexical) correspondence between text and speech (Experiment 3). These results suggest that prior knowledge effects are time-limited by the duration of auditory echoic memory for degraded speech, consistent with top-down modulation of early acoustic processing by linguistic knowledge. PMID:23750966

  12. Opportunities in Speech Pathology.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Newman, Parley W.

    The importance of speech is discussed and speech pathology is described. Types of communication disorders considered are articulation disorders, aphasia, facial deformity, hearing loss, stuttering, delayed speech, voice disorders, and cerebral palsy; examples of five disorders are given. Speech pathology is investigated from these aspects: the…

  13. Careers in Speech Communication.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Speech Communication Association, New York, NY.

    Brief discussions in this pamphlet suggest educational and career opportunities in the following fields of speech communication: rhetoric, public address, and communication; theatre, drama, and oral interpretation; radio, television, and film; speech pathology and audiology; speech science, phonetics, and linguistics; and speech education.…

  14. Linguistic cues and memory for synthetic and natural speech.

    PubMed

    Paris, C R; Thomas, M H; Gilson, R D; Kincaid, J P

    2000-01-01

    Past research has demonstrated that there are cognitive processing costs associated with comprehension of speech generated by text-to-speech synthesizers, relative to comprehension of natural speech. This finding has important performance implications for the many applications that use such systems. The purpose of this study was to ascertain whether certain characteristics of synthetic speech slow on-line, real-time cognitive processing. Whereas past research has focused on the phonemic acoustic structure of synthetic speech, we manipulated prosodic, syntactic, and semantic cues in a task requiring participants to recall sentences spoken either by a human or by one of two speech synthesizers. The findings were interpreted to suggest that inappropriate prosodic modeling in synthetic speech was the major source of a performance differential between natural and synthetic speech. Prosodic cues, along with others, guide the parsing of speech and provide redundancy. When these cues are absent or inaccurate, the additional burden placed on working memory may exceed its capacity, particularly in time-limited, demanding tasks. Actual or potential applications of this research include improvement of text-to-speech output systems in warning systems, feedback devices in aerospace vehicles, educational and training modules, aids for the handicapped, consumer products, and technologies designed to increase the functional independence of older adults. PMID:11132803

  15. Acoustic Neuroma

    MedlinePlus

    An acoustic neuroma is a benign tumor that develops on the nerve that connects the ear to the brain. The tumor ... press against the brain, becoming life-threatening. Acoustic neuroma can be difficult to diagnose, because the symptoms ...

  16. Diagnostic Distortions: A Case Report of Progressive Apraxia of Speech.

    PubMed

    Brodtmann, Amy; Pemberton, Hugh; Darby, David; Vogel, Adam P

    2016-04-19

    Apraxia of speech (AOS) can be the presenting symptom of neurodegenerative disease. The position of primary progressive AOS in the nosology of the dementias is still controversial. Despite seeing many specialists, patients are often misdiagnosed, in part due to a lack of quantitative measures of speech dysfunction. We present a single case report of a patient presenting with AOS, including acoustic analysis, language assessment, and brain imaging. A 52-year-old woman presenting with AOS had remained undiagnosed for 6 years despite seeing 8 specialists. Results of her MRI scans, genetic testing, and computerized speech analysis are provided. AOS is an underdiagnosed clinical syndrome causing great distress to patients and families. Using acoustic analysis of speech may lead to improved diagnostic accuracy. AOS is a complex entity with an expanding phenotype, and quantitative clinical measures will be critical for detection and to assess progression. PMID:27104903

  17. Cue integration and context effects in speech: Evidence against speaking rate normalization

    PubMed Central

    Toscano, Joseph C.; McMurray, Bob

    2012-01-01

    Listeners are able to accurately recognize speech despite variation in acoustic cues across contexts, such as different speaking rates. Previous work has suggested that listeners use rate information (indicated by vowel length; VL) to modify their use of context-dependent acoustic cues, like voice-onset time (VOT), a primary cue to voicing. We present several experiments and simulations that offer an alternative explanation: listeners treat VL as an phonetic cue, rather than as an indicator of speaking rate, and rely on general cue-integration principles to combine information from VOT and VL. We demonstrate that listeners use the two cues independently, that VL is used in both naturally-produced and synthetic speech, and that effects of stimulus naturalness can be explained by a cue-integration model. Together, these results suggest that listeners do not interpret VOT relative to rate information provided by VL and that effects of speaking rate can be explained by more general cue-integration principles. PMID:22532385

  18. Comparison of a short-time speech-based intelligibility metric to the speech transmission index and intelligibility dataa

    PubMed Central

    Payton, Karen L.; Shrestha, Mona

    2013-01-01

    Several algorithms have been shown to generate a metric corresponding to the Speech Transmission Index (STI) using speech as a probe stimulus [e.g., Goldsworthy and Greenberg, J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 116, 3679–3689 (2004)]. The time-domain approaches work well on long speech segments and have the added potential to be used for short-time analysis. This study investigates the performance of the Envelope Regression (ER) time-domain STI method as a function of window length, in acoustically degraded environments with multiple talkers and speaking styles. The ER method is compared with a short-time Theoretical STI, derived from octave-band signal-to-noise ratios and reverberation times. For windows as short as 0.3 s, the ER method tracks short-time Theoretical STI changes in stationary speech-shaped noise, fluctuating restaurant babble and stationary noise plus reverberation. The metric is also compared to intelligibility scores on conversational speech and speech articulated clearly but at normal speaking rates (Clear/Norm) in stationary noise. Correlation between the metric and intelligibility scores is high and, consistent with the subject scores, the metrics are higher for Clear/Norm speech than for conversational speech and higher for the first word in a sentence than for the last word. PMID:24180791

  19. Models of speech synthesis.

    PubMed

    Carlson, R

    1995-10-24

    The term "speech synthesis" has been used for diverse technical approaches. In this paper, some of the approaches used to generate synthetic speech in a text-to-speech system are reviewed, and some of the basic motivations for choosing one method over another are discussed. It is important to keep in mind, however, that speech synthesis models are needed not just for speech generation but to help us understand how speech is created, or even how articulation can explain language structure. General issues such as the synthesis of different voices, accents, and multiple languages are discussed as special challenges facing the speech synthesis community. PMID:7479805

  20. Models of speech synthesis.

    PubMed Central

    Carlson, R

    1995-01-01

    The term "speech synthesis" has been used for diverse technical approaches. In this paper, some of the approaches used to generate synthetic speech in a text-to-speech system are reviewed, and some of the basic motivations for choosing one method over another are discussed. It is important to keep in mind, however, that speech synthesis models are needed not just for speech generation but to help us understand how speech is created, or even how articulation can explain language structure. General issues such as the synthesis of different voices, accents, and multiple languages are discussed as special challenges facing the speech synthesis community. PMID:7479805

  1. Predicting the intelligibility of vocoded speech

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Fei; Loizou, Philipos C.

    2010-01-01

    Objectives The purpose of this study is to evaluate the performance of a number of speech intelligibility indices in terms of predicting the intelligibility of vocoded speech. Design Noise-corrupted sentences were vocoded in a total of 80 conditions, involving three different SNR levels (-5, 0 and 5 dB) and two types of maskers (steady-state noise and two-talker). Tone-vocoder simulations were used as well as simulations of combined electric-acoustic stimulation (EAS). The vocoded sentences were presented to normal-hearing listeners for identification, and the resulting intelligibility scores were used to assess the correlation of various speech intelligibility measures. These included measures designed to assess speech intelligibility, including the speech-transmission index (STI) and articulation index (AI) based measures, as well as distortions in hearing aids (e.g., coherence-based measures). These measures employed primarily either the temporal-envelope or the spectral-envelope information in the prediction model. The underlying hypothesis in the present study is that measures that assess temporal envelope distortions, such as those based on the speech-transmission index, should correlate highly with the intelligibility of vocoded speech. This is based on the fact that vocoder simulations preserve primarily envelope information, similar to the processing implemented in current cochlear implant speech processors. Similarly, it is hypothesized that measures such as the coherence-based index that assess the distortions present in the spectral envelope could also be used to model the intelligibility of vocoded speech. Results Of all the intelligibility measures considered, the coherence-based and the STI-based measures performed the best. High correlations (r=0.9-0.96) were maintained with the coherence-based measures in all noisy conditions. The highest correlation obtained with the STI-based measure was 0.92, and that was obtained when high modulation rates (100

  2. The Effects of Simulated Stuttering and Prolonged Speech on the Neural Activation Patterns of Stuttering and Nonstuttering Adults

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    De Nil, Luc F.; Beal, Deryk S.; Lafaille, Sophie J.; Kroll, Robert M.; Crawley, Adrian P.; Gracco, Vincent L.

    2008-01-01

    Functional magnetic resonance imaging was used to investigate the neural correlates of passive listening, habitual speech and two modified speech patterns (simulated stuttering and prolonged speech) in stuttering and nonstuttering adults. Within-group comparisons revealed increased right hemisphere biased activation of speech-related regions…

  3. Acoustic Characteristics of Simulated Respiratory-Induced Vocal Tremor

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lester, Rosemary A.; Story, Brad H.

    2013-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of this study was to investigate the relation of respiratory forced oscillation to the acoustic characteristics of vocal tremor. Method: Acoustical analyses were performed to determine the characteristics of the intensity and fundamental frequency (F[subscript 0]) for speech samples obtained by Farinella, Hixon, Hoit, Story,…

  4. Acoustic Seal

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Steinetz, Bruce M. (Inventor)

    2006-01-01

    The invention relates to a sealing device having an acoustic resonator. The acoustic resonator is adapted to create acoustic waveforms to generate a sealing pressure barrier blocking fluid flow from a high pressure area to a lower pressure area. The sealing device permits noncontacting sealing operation. The sealing device may include a resonant-macrosonic-synthesis (RMS) resonator.

  5. Acoustic seal

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Steinetz, Bruce M. (Inventor)

    2006-01-01

    The invention relates to a sealing device having an acoustic resonator. The acoustic resonator is adapted to create acoustic waveforms to generate a sealing pressure barrier blocking fluid flow from a high pressure area to a lower pressure area. The sealing device permits noncontacting sealing operation. The sealing device may include a resonant-macrosonic-synthesis (RMS) resonator.

  6. Chinese speech intelligibility and its relationship with the speech transmission index for children in elementary school classrooms.

    PubMed

    Peng, Jianxin; Yan, Nanjie; Wang, Dan

    2015-01-01

    The present study investigated Chinese speech intelligibility in 28 classrooms from nine different elementary schools in Guangzhou, China. The subjective Chinese speech intelligibility in the classrooms was evaluated with children in grades 2, 4, and 6 (7 to 12 years old). Acoustical measurements were also performed in these classrooms. Subjective Chinese speech intelligibility scores and objective speech intelligibility parameters, such as speech transmission index (STI), were obtained at each listening position for all tests. The relationship between subjective Chinese speech intelligibility scores and STI was revealed and analyzed. The effects of age on Chinese speech intelligibility scores were compared. Results indicate high correlations between subjective Chinese speech intelligibility scores and STI for grades 2, 4, and 6 children. Chinese speech intelligibility scores increase with increase of age under the same STI condition. The differences in scores among different age groups decrease as STI increases. To achieve 95% Chinese speech intelligibility scores, the STIs required for grades 2, 4, and 6 children are 0.75, 0.69, and 0.63, respectively.

  7. Development of the Cantonese speech intelligibility index.

    PubMed

    Wong, Lena L N; Ho, Amy H S; Chua, Elizabeth W W; Soli, Sigfrid D

    2007-04-01

    A Speech Intelligibility Index (SII) for the sentences in the Cantonese version of the Hearing In Noise Test (CHINT) was derived using conventional procedures described previously in studies such as Studebaker and Sherbecoe [J. Speech Hear. Res. 34, 427-438 (1991)]. Two studies were conducted to determine the signal-to-noise ratios and high- and low-pass filtering conditions that should be used and to measure speech intelligibility in these conditions. Normal hearing subjects listened to the sentences presented in speech-spectrum shaped noise. Compared to other English speech assessment materials such as the English Hearing In Noise Test [Nilsson et al., J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 95, 1085-1099 (1994)], the frequency importance function of the CHINT suggests that low-frequency information is more important for Cantonese speech understanding. The difference in ,frequency importance weight in Chinese, compared to English, was attributed to the redundancy of test material, tonal nature of the Cantonese language, or a combination of these factors.

  8. Speech prosody in cerebellar ataxia.

    PubMed

    Casper, Maureen A; Raphael, Lawrence J; Harris, Katherine S; Geibel, Jennifer M

    2007-01-01

    Persons with cerebellar ataxia exhibit changes in physical coordination and speech and voice production. Previously, these alterations of speech and voice production were described primarily via perceptual coordinates. In this study, the spatial-temporal properties of syllable production were examined in 12 speakers, six of whom were healthy speakers and six with ataxia. The speaking task was designed to elicit six different prosodic conditions and four contrastive prosodic events. Distinct prosodic patterns were elicited by the examiner for cerebellar patients and healthy speakers. These utterances were digitally recorded and analysed acoustically and statistically. The healthy speakers showed statistically significant differences among all four prosodic contrasts. The normal model described by the prosodic contrasts provided a sensitive index of cerebellar pathology with quantitative acoustic analyses. A significant interaction between subject groups and prosodic conditions revealed a compromised prosody in cerebellar patients. Significant differences were found for durational parameters, F0 and formant frequencies. The cerebellar speakers demonstrated different patterns of syllable lengthening and syllable reduction from that of the healthy speakers. PMID:17613097

  9. Speech pattern hearing aids for the profoundly hearing impaired: speech perception and auditory abilities.

    PubMed

    Faulkner, A; Ball, V; Rosen, S; Moore, B C; Fourcin, A

    1992-04-01

    A family of prototype speech pattern hearing aids for the profoundly hearing impaired has been compared to amplification. These aids are designed to extract acoustic speech patterns that convey essential phonetic contrasts, and to match this information to residual receptive abilities. In the first study, the presentation of voice fundamental frequency information from a wearable SiVo (sinusoidal voice) aid was compared to amplification in 11 profoundly deafened adults. Intonation reception was often better, and never worse, with fundamental frequency information. Four subjects scored more highly in audio-visual consonant identification with fundamental frequency information, five performed better with amplified speech, and two performed similarly under these two conditions. Five of the 11 subjects continued use of the SiVo aid after the tests were complete. A second study examined a laboratory prototype compound speech pattern aid, which encoded voice fundamental frequency, amplitude envelope, and the presence of voiceless excitation. In five profoundly deafened adults, performance was better in consonant identification when additional speech patterns were present than with fundamental frequency alone; the main advantage was derived from amplitude information. In both consonant identification and connected discourse tracking, performance with appropriately matched compound speech pattern signals was better than with amplified speech in three subjects, and similar to performance with amplified speech in the other two. In nine subjects, frequency discrimination, gap detection, and frequency selectivity were measured, and were compared to speech receptive abilities with both amplification and fundamental frequency presentation. The subjects who showed the greatest advantage from fundamental frequency presentation showed the greatest average hearing losses, and the least degree of frequency selectivity. Compound speech pattern aids appear to be more effective for some

  10. Acoustic analysis of trill sounds.

    PubMed

    Dhananjaya, N; Yegnanarayana, B; Bhaskararao, Peri

    2012-04-01

    In this paper, the acoustic-phonetic characteristics of steady apical trills--trill sounds produced by the periodic vibration of the apex of the tongue--are studied. Signal processing methods, namely, zero-frequency filtering and zero-time liftering of speech signals, are used to analyze the excitation source and the resonance characteristics of the vocal tract system, respectively. Although it is natural to expect the effect of trilling on the resonances of the vocal tract system, it is interesting to note that trilling influences the glottal source of excitation as well. The excitation characteristics derived using zero-frequency filtering of speech signals are glottal epochs, strength of impulses at the glottal epochs, and instantaneous fundamental frequency of the glottal vibration. Analysis based on zero-time liftering of speech signals is used to study the dynamic resonance characteristics of vocal tract system during the production of trill sounds. Qualitative analysis of trill sounds in different vowel contexts, and the acoustic cues that may help spotting trills in continuous speech are discussed. PMID:22501086

  11. Analysis of Speech Disorders in Acute Pseudobulbar Palsy: a Longitudinal Study of a Patient with Lingual Paralysis.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Leroy-Malherbe, V.; Chevrie-Muller, C.; Rigoard, M. T.; Arabia, C.

    1998-01-01

    This case report describes the case of a 52-year-old man with bilateral central lingual paralysis following a myocardial infarction. Analysis of speech recordings 15 days and 18 months after the attack were acoustically analyzed. The case demonstrates the usefulness of acoustic analysis to detect slight acoustic differences. (DB)

  12. Psychoacoustic cues to emotion in speech prosody and music.

    PubMed

    Coutinho, Eduardo; Dibben, Nicola

    2013-01-01

    There is strong evidence of shared acoustic profiles common to the expression of emotions in music and speech, yet relatively limited understanding of the specific psychoacoustic features involved. This study combined a controlled experiment and computational modelling to investigate the perceptual codes associated with the expression of emotion in the acoustic domain. The empirical stage of the study provided continuous human ratings of emotions perceived in excerpts of film music and natural speech samples. The computational stage created a computer model that retrieves the relevant information from the acoustic stimuli and makes predictions about the emotional expressiveness of speech and music close to the responses of human subjects. We show that a significant part of the listeners' second-by-second reported emotions to music and speech prosody can be predicted from a set of seven psychoacoustic features: loudness, tempo/speech rate, melody/prosody contour, spectral centroid, spectral flux, sharpness, and roughness. The implications of these results are discussed in the context of cross-modal similarities in the communication of emotion in the acoustic domain. PMID:23057507

  13. Psychoacoustic cues to emotion in speech prosody and music.

    PubMed

    Coutinho, Eduardo; Dibben, Nicola

    2013-01-01

    There is strong evidence of shared acoustic profiles common to the expression of emotions in music and speech, yet relatively limited understanding of the specific psychoacoustic features involved. This study combined a controlled experiment and computational modelling to investigate the perceptual codes associated with the expression of emotion in the acoustic domain. The empirical stage of the study provided continuous human ratings of emotions perceived in excerpts of film music and natural speech samples. The computational stage created a computer model that retrieves the relevant information from the acoustic stimuli and makes predictions about the emotional expressiveness of speech and music close to the responses of human subjects. We show that a significant part of the listeners' second-by-second reported emotions to music and speech prosody can be predicted from a set of seven psychoacoustic features: loudness, tempo/speech rate, melody/prosody contour, spectral centroid, spectral flux, sharpness, and roughness. The implications of these results are discussed in the context of cross-modal similarities in the communication of emotion in the acoustic domain.

  14. Hemispheric Asymmetries in Speech Perception: Sense, Nonsense and Modulations

    PubMed Central

    Rosen, Stuart; Wise, Richard J. S.; Chadha, Shabneet; Conway, Eleanor-Jayne; Scott, Sophie K.

    2011-01-01

    Background The well-established left hemisphere specialisation for language processing has long been claimed to be based on a low-level auditory specialization for specific acoustic features in speech, particularly regarding ‘rapid temporal processing’. Methodology A novel analysis/synthesis technique was used to construct a variety of sounds based on simple sentences which could be manipulated in spectro-temporal complexity, and whether they were intelligible or not. All sounds consisted of two noise-excited spectral prominences (based on the lower two formants in the original speech) which could be static or varying in frequency and/or amplitude independently. Dynamically varying both acoustic features based on the same sentence led to intelligible speech but when either or both acoustic features were static, the stimuli were not intelligible. Using the frequency dynamics from one sentence with the amplitude dynamics of another led to unintelligible sounds of comparable spectro-temporal complexity to the intelligible ones. Positron emission tomography (PET) was used to compare which brain regions were active when participants listened to the different sounds. Conclusions Neural activity to spectral and amplitude modulations sufficient to support speech intelligibility (without actually being intelligible) was seen bilaterally, with a right temporal lobe dominance. A left dominant response was seen only to intelligible sounds. It thus appears that the left hemisphere specialisation for speech is based on the linguistic properties of utterances, not on particular acoustic features. PMID:21980349

  15. Emotion Identification Using Extremely Low Frequency Components of Speech Feature Contours

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Chang-Hong; Liao, Wei-Kai; Hsieh, Wen-Chi; Liao, Wei-Jiun

    2014-01-01

    The investigations of emotional speech identification can be divided into two main parts, features and classifiers. In this paper, how to extract an effective speech feature set for the emotional speech identification is addressed. In our speech feature set, we use not only statistical analysis of frame-based acoustical features, but also the approximated speech feature contours, which are obtained by extracting extremely low frequency components to speech feature contours. Furthermore, principal component analysis (PCA) is applied to the approximated speech feature contours so that an efficient representation of approximated contours can be derived. The proposed speech feature set is fed into support vector machines (SVMs) to perform multiclass emotion identification. The experimental results demonstrate the performance of the proposed system with 82.26% identification rate. PMID:24982991

  16. Talker variability in audio-visual speech perception.

    PubMed

    Heald, Shannon L M; Nusbaum, Howard C

    2014-01-01

    A change in talker is a change in the context for the phonetic interpretation of acoustic patterns of speech. Different talkers have different mappings between acoustic patterns and phonetic categories and listeners need to adapt to these differences. Despite this complexity, listeners are adept at comprehending speech in multiple-talker contexts, albeit at a slight but measurable performance cost (e.g., slower recognition). So far, this talker variability cost has been demonstrated only in audio-only speech. Other research in single-talker contexts have shown, however, that when listeners are able to see a talker's face, speech recognition is improved under adverse listening (e.g., noise or distortion) conditions that can increase uncertainty in the mapping between acoustic patterns and phonetic categories. Does seeing a talker's face reduce the cost of word recognition in multiple-talker contexts? We used a speeded word-monitoring task in which listeners make quick judgments about target word recognition in single- and multiple-talker contexts. Results show faster recognition performance in single-talker conditions compared to multiple-talker conditions for both audio-only and audio-visual speech. However, recognition time in a multiple-talker context was slower in the audio-visual condition compared to audio-only condition. These results suggest that seeing a talker's face during speech perception may slow recognition by increasing the importance of talker identification, signaling to the listener a change in talker has occurred. PMID:25076919

  17. Cortical asymmetries in speech perception: what’s wrong, what’s right, and what’s left?

    PubMed Central

    McGettigan, Carolyn; Scott, Sophie K.

    2014-01-01

    Over the last 30 years hemispheric asymmetries in speech perception have been construed within a domain general framework, where preferential processing of speech is due to left lateralized, non-linguistic acoustic sensitivities. A prominent version of this argument holds that the left temporal lobe selectively processes rapid/temporal information in sound. Acoustically, this is a poor characterization of speech and there has been little empirical support for a left-hemisphere selectivity for these cues. In sharp contrast, the right temporal lobe is demonstrably sensitive to specific acoustic properties. We suggest that acoustic accounts of speech sensitivities need to be informed by the nature of the speech signal, and that a simple domain general/specific dichotomy may be incorrect. PMID:22521208

  18. Speaker verification using combined acoustic and EM sensor signal processing

    SciTech Connect

    Ng, L C; Gable, T J; Holzrichter, J F

    2000-11-10

    Low Power EM radar-like sensors have made it possible to measure properties of the human speech production system in real-time, without acoustic interference. This greatly enhances the quality and quantity of information for many speech related applications. See Holzrichter, Burnett, Ng, and Lea, J. Acoustic. SOC. Am . 103 ( 1) 622 (1998). By combining the Glottal-EM-Sensor (GEMS) with the Acoustic-signals, we've demonstrated an almost 10 fold reduction in error rates from a speaker verification system experiment under a moderate noisy environment (-10dB).

  19. Low Bandwidth Vocoding using EM Sensor and Acoustic Signal Processing

    SciTech Connect

    Ng, L C; Holzrichter, J F; Larson, P E

    2001-10-25

    Low-power EM radar-like sensors have made it possible to measure properties of the human speech production system in real-time, without acoustic interference [1]. By combining these data with the corresponding acoustic signal, we've demonstrated an almost 10-fold bandwidth reduction in speech compression, compared to a standard 2.4 kbps LPC10 protocol used in the STU-III (Secure Terminal Unit, third generation) telephone. This paper describes a potential EM sensor/acoustic based vocoder implementation.

  20. Comparison of voice acquisition methodologies in speech research.

    PubMed

    Vogel, Adam P; Maruff, Paul

    2008-11-01

    The use of voice acoustic techniques has the potential to extend beyond work devoted purely to speech or vocal pathology. For this to occur, however, researchers and clinicians will require acquisition technologies that provide fast, accurate, and cost-effective methods for recording data. Therefore, the present study aimed to compare industry-standard techniques for acquiring high-quality acoustic signals (e.g., hard drive and solid-state recorder) with widely available and easy-to-use, computer-based (standard laptop) data-acquisition methods. Speech samples were simultaneously acquired from 15 healthy controls using all three methods and were analyzed using identical analysis techniques. Data from all three acquisition methods were directly compared using a variety of acoustic correlates. The results suggested that selected acoustic measures (e.g., f 0, noise-to-harmonic ratio, number of pauses) were accurately obtained using all three methods; however, minimum recording standards were required for widely used measures of perturbation.

  1. Speech research directions

    SciTech Connect

    Atal, B.S.; Rabiner, L.R.

    1986-09-01

    This paper presents an overview of the current activities in speech research. The authors discuss the state of the art in speech coding, text-to-speech synthesis, speech recognition, and speaker recognition. In the speech coding area, current algorithms perform well at bit rates down to 9.6 kb/s, and the research is directed at bringing the rate for high-quality speech coding down to 2.4 kb/s. In text-to-speech synthesis, what we currently are able to produce is very intelligible but not yet completely natural. Current research aims at providing higher quality and intelligibility to the synthetic speech that these systems produce. Finally, today's systems for speech and speaker recognition provide excellent performance on limited tasks; i.e., limited vocabulary, modest syntax, small talker populations, constrained inputs, etc.

  2. Speech and non‐speech processing in children with phonological disorders: an electrophysiological study

    PubMed Central

    Gonçalves, Isabela Crivellaro; Wertzner, Haydée Fiszbein; Samelli, Alessandra Giannella; Matas, Carla Gentile

    2011-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To determine whether neurophysiological auditory brainstem responses to clicks and repeated speech stimuli differ between typically developing children and children with phonological disorders. INTRODUCTION: Phonological disorders are language impairments resulting from inadequate use of adult phonological language rules and are among the most common speech and language disorders in children (prevalence: 8 ‐ 9%). Our hypothesis is that children with phonological disorders have basic differences in the way that their brains encode acoustic signals at brainstem level when compared to normal counterparts. METHODS: We recorded click and speech evoked auditory brainstem responses in 18 typically developing children (control group) and in 18 children who were clinically diagnosed with phonological disorders (research group). The age range of the children was from 7‐11 years. RESULTS: The research group exhibited significantly longer latency responses to click stimuli (waves I, III and V) and speech stimuli (waves V and A) when compared to the control group. DISCUSSION: These results suggest that the abnormal encoding of speech sounds may be a biological marker of phonological disorders. However, these results cannot define the biological origins of phonological problems. We also observed that speech‐evoked auditory brainstem responses had a higher specificity/sensitivity for identifying phonological disorders than click‐evoked auditory brainstem responses. CONCLUSIONS: Early stages of the auditory pathway processing of an acoustic stimulus are not similar in typically developing children and those with phonological disorders. These findings suggest that there are brainstem auditory pathway abnormalities in children with phonological disorders. PMID:21484049

  3. Sensitivity to Structure in the Speech Signal by Children with Speech Sound Disorder and Reading Disability

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, Erin Phinney; Pennington, Bruce F.; Lowenstein, Joanna H.; Nittrouer, Susan

    2011-01-01

    Purpose Children with speech sound disorder (SSD) and reading disability (RD) have poor phonological awareness, a problem believed to arise largely from deficits in processing the sensory information in speech, specifically individual acoustic cues. However, such cues are details of acoustic structure. Recent theories suggest that listeners also need to be able to integrate those details to perceive linguistically relevant form. This study examined abilities of children with SSD, RD, and SSD+RD not only to process acoustic cues but also to recover linguistically relevant form from the speech signal. Method Ten- to 11-year-olds with SSD (n = 17), RD (n = 16), SSD+RD (n = 17), and Controls (n = 16) were tested to examine their sensitivity to (1) voice onset times (VOT); (2) spectral structure in fricative-vowel syllables; and (3) vocoded sentences. Results Children in all groups performed similarly with VOT stimuli, but children with disorders showed delays on other tasks, although the specifics of their performance varied. Conclusion Children with poor phonemic awareness not only lack sensitivity to acoustic details, but are also less able to recover linguistically relevant forms. This is contrary to one of the main current theories of the relation between spoken and written language development. PMID:21329941

  4. A Study of Additive Noise Model for Robust Speech Recognition

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Awatade, Manisha H.

    2011-12-01

    A model of how speech amplitude spectra are affected by additive noise is studied. Acoustic features are extracted based on the noise robust parts of speech spectra without losing discriminative information. An existing two non-linear processing methods, harmonic demodulation and spectral peak-to-valley ratio locking, are designed to minimize mismatch between clean and noisy speech features. Previously studied methods, including peak isolation [1], do not require noise estimation and are effective in dealing with both stationary and non-stationary noise.

  5. Acoustics, Noise, and Buildings. Revised Edition 1969.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Parkin, P. H.; Humphreys, H. R.

    The fundamental physical concepts needed in any appreciation of acoustical problems are discussed by a scientist and an architect. The major areas of interest are--(1) the nature of sound, (2) the behavior of sound in rooms, (3) the design of rooms for speech, (4) the design of rooms for music, (5) the design of studios, (6) the design of high…

  6. Classroom Acoustics: The Problem, Impact, and Solution.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Berg, Frederick S.; And Others

    1996-01-01

    This article describes aspects of classroom acoustics that interfere with the ability of listeners to understand speech. It considers impacts on students and teachers and offers four possible solutions: noise control, signal control without amplification, individual amplification systems, and sound field amplification systems. (Author/DB)

  7. Experiments on the Acoustics of Whistling.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shadle, Christine H.

    1983-01-01

    The acoustics of speech production allows the prediction of resonances for a given vocal tract configuration. Combining these predictions with aerodynamic theory developed for mechanical whistles makes theories about human whistling more complete. Several experiments involving human whistling are reported which support the theory and indicate new…

  8. Acoustic Packaging of Action Sequences by Infants

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brand, Rebecca J.; Tapscott, Stephanie

    2007-01-01

    This study investigated whether acoustic input, in the form of infant-directed speech, influenced infants' segmenting of action sequences. Thirty-two 7.5- to 11.5-month-old infants were familiarized with video sequences made up of short action clips. Narration coincided with portions of the action stream to package certain pairs of clips together.…

  9. The Effect of Technology and Testing Environment on Speech Perception Using Telehealth with Cochlear Implant Recipients

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Goehring, Jenny L.; Hughes, Michelle L.; Baudhuin, Jacquelyn L.; Valente, Daniel L.; McCreery, Ryan W.; Diaz, Gina R.; Sanford, Todd; Harpster, Roger

    2012-01-01

    Purpose: In this study, the authors evaluated the effect of remote system and acoustic environment on speech perception via telehealth with cochlear implant recipients. Method: Speech perception was measured in quiet and in noise. Systems evaluated were Polycom visual concert (PVC) and a hybrid presentation system (HPS). Each system was evaluated…

  10. Speech Modification by a Deaf Child through Dynamic Orometric Modeling and Feedback.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fletcher, Samuel G.; Hasegawa, Akira

    1983-01-01

    A three and one-half-year-old profoundly deaf girl, whose physiologic, acoustic, and phonetic data indicated poor speech production, rapidly learned goal articulation gestures (positional and timing features of speech) after visual articulatory modeling and feedbck on tongue position with a microprocessor based instrument and video display.…

  11. Learning to Match Auditory and Visual Speech Cues: Social Influences on Acquisition of Phonological Categories

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Altvater-Mackensen, Nicole; Grossmann, Tobias

    2015-01-01

    Infants' language exposure largely involves face-to-face interactions providing acoustic and visual speech cues but also social cues that might foster language learning. Yet, both audiovisual speech information and social information have so far received little attention in research on infants' early language development. Using a preferential…

  12. Seeing to Hear Better: Evidence for Early Audio-Visual Interactions in Speech Identification

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schwartz, Jean-Luc; Berthommier, Frederic; Savariaux, Christophe

    2004-01-01

    Lip reading is the ability to partially understand speech by looking at the speaker's lips. It improves the intelligibility of speech in noise when audio-visual perception is compared with audio-only perception. A recent set of experiments showed that seeing the speaker's lips also enhances "sensitivity" to acoustic information, decreasing the…

  13. Emotional and Physiological Responses of Fluent Listeners while Watching the Speech of Adults Who Stutter

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Guntupalli, Vijaya K.; Everhart, D. Erik; Kalinowski, Joseph; Nanjundeswaran, Chayadevie; Saltuklaroglu, Tim

    2007-01-01

    Background: People who stutter produce speech that is characterized by intermittent, involuntary part-word repetitions and prolongations. In addition to these signature acoustic manifestations, those who stutter often display repetitive and fixated behaviours outside the speech producing mechanism (e.g. in the head, arm, fingers, nares, etc.).…

  14. Behavioral and Electrophysiological Evidence for Early and Automatic Detection of Phonological Equivalence in Variable Speech Inputs

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kharlamov, Viktor; Campbell, Kenneth; Kazanina, Nina

    2011-01-01

    Speech sounds are not always perceived in accordance with their acoustic-phonetic content. For example, an early and automatic process of perceptual repair, which ensures conformity of speech inputs to the listener's native language phonology, applies to individual input segments that do not exist in the native inventory or to sound sequences that…

  15. Phonetic Category Cues in Adult-Directed Speech: Evidence from Three Languages with Distinct Vowel Characteristics

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pons, Ferran; Biesanz, Jeremy C.; Kajikawa, Sachiyo; Fais, Laurel; Narayan, Chandan R.; Amano, Shigeaki; Werker, Janet F.

    2012-01-01

    Using an artificial language learning manipulation, Maye, Werker, and Gerken (2002) demonstrated that infants' speech sound categories change as a function of the distributional properties of the input. In a recent study, Werker et al. (2007) showed that Infant-directed Speech (IDS) input contains reliable acoustic cues that support distributional…

  16. Prosody in Infant-Directed Speech Is Similar across Western and Traditional Cultures

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Broesch, Tanya L.; Bryant, Gregory A.

    2015-01-01

    When speaking to infants, adults typically alter the acoustic properties of their speech in a variety of ways compared with how they speak to other adults; for example, they use higher pitch, increased pitch range, more pitch variability, and slower speech rate. Research shows that these vocal changes happen similarly across industrialized…

  17. The Perception of "Sine-Wave Speech" by Adults with Developmental Dyslexia.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rosner, Burton S.; Talcott, Joel B.; Witton, Caroline; Hogg, James D.; Richardson, Alexandra J.; Hansen, Peter C.; Stein, John F.

    2003-01-01

    "Sine-wave speech" sentences contain only four frequency-modulated sine waves, lacking many acoustic cues present in natural speech. Adults with (n=19) and without (n=14) dyslexia were asked to reproduce orally sine-wave utterances in successive trials. Results suggest comprehension of sine-wave sentences is impaired in some adults with dyslexia.…

  18. Speech articulator measurements using low power EM-wave sensors

    SciTech Connect

    Holzrichter, J.F.; Burnett, G.C.; Ng, L.C.; Lea, W.A.

    1998-01-01

    Very low power electromagnetic (EM) wave sensors are being used to measure speech articulator motions as speech is produced. Glottal tissue oscillations, jaw, tongue, soft palate, and other organs have been measured. Previously, microwave imaging (e.g., using radar sensors) appears not to have been considered for such monitoring. Glottal tissue movements detected by radar sensors correlate well with those obtained by established laboratory techniques, and have been used to estimate a voiced excitation function for speech processing applications. The noninvasive access, coupled with the small size, low power, and high resolution of these new sensors, permit promising research and development applications in speech production, communication disorders, speech recognition and related topics. {copyright} {ital 1998 Acoustical Society of America.}

  19. Neural mechanisms underlying auditory feedback control of speech.

    PubMed

    Tourville, Jason A; Reilly, Kevin J; Guenther, Frank H

    2008-02-01

    The neural substrates underlying auditory feedback control of speech were investigated using a combination of functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and computational modeling. Neural responses were measured while subjects spoke monosyllabic words under two conditions: (i) normal auditory feedback of their speech and (ii) auditory feedback in which the first formant frequency of their speech was unexpectedly shifted in real time. Acoustic measurements showed compensation to the shift within approximately 136 ms of onset. Neuroimaging revealed increased activity in bilateral superior temporal cortex during shifted feedback, indicative of neurons coding mismatches between expected and actual auditory signals, as well as right prefrontal and Rolandic cortical activity. Structural equation modeling revealed increased influence of bilateral auditory cortical areas on right frontal areas during shifted speech, indicating that projections from auditory error cells in posterior superior temporal cortex to motor correction cells in right frontal cortex mediate auditory feedback control of speech.

  20. How may the basal ganglia contribute to auditory categorization and speech perception?

    PubMed Central

    Lim, Sung-Joo; Fiez, Julie A.; Holt, Lori L.

    2014-01-01

    Listeners must accomplish two complementary perceptual feats in extracting a message from speech. They must discriminate linguistically-relevant acoustic variability and generalize across irrelevant variability. Said another way, they must categorize speech. Since the mapping of acoustic variability is language-specific, these categories must be learned from experience. Thus, understanding how, in general, the auditory system acquires and represents categories can inform us about the toolbox of mechanisms available to speech perception. This perspective invites consideration of findings from cognitive neuroscience literatures outside of the speech domain as a means of constraining models of speech perception. Although neurobiological models of speech perception have mainly focused on cerebral cortex, research outside the speech domain is consistent with the possibility of significant subcortical contributions in category learning. Here, we review the functional role of one such structure, the basal ganglia. We examine research from animal electrophysiology, human neuroimaging, and behavior to consider characteristics of basal ganglia processing that may be advantageous for speech category learning. We also present emerging evidence for a direct role for basal ganglia in learning auditory categories in a complex, naturalistic task intended to model the incidental manner in which speech categories are acquired. To conclude, we highlight new research questions that arise in incorporating the broader neuroscience research literature in modeling speech perception, and suggest how understanding contributions of the basal ganglia can inform attempts to optimize training protocols for learning non-native speech categories in adulthood. PMID:25136291

  1. Acoustics and its relation to language: The influence of Dick Bolt

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stevens, Kenneth N.

    2003-04-01

    Under the mentoring of Dick Bolt, and the stimulation he provided in the Acoustics Laboratory at MIT, many students were exposed to a range of topics in acoustics, including mechanisms of sound generation, radiation, and propagation, noise control, acoustics of resonators and rooms, human responses to sound, and speech perception under various adverse conditions. As someone who became interested in speech communication, I have recognized that this kind of quantitative background in acoustics is an important requirement for developing models of how humans produce speech, how they perceive and understand speech, and how children acquire these skills. Speech production involves sound sources produced by a nonlinear mechanical system and by noise arising from turbulent airflow. Sound is propagated in a vocal tract with yielding walls, and acoustic coupling is introduced by lossy resonators attached to the vocal tract, including the trachea and the nasal cavity. These acoustic principles of sound generation create an inventory of sound types that give rise to distinctive responses in the ears and brains of listeners. The solid grounding in acoustics provided by Dick Bolt and his leadership have helped in the formation of this linkage between acoustics, speech physiology, linguistics, and human perception.

  2. Delayed Speech or Language Development

    MedlinePlus

    ... to Know About Zika & Pregnancy Delayed Speech or Language Development KidsHealth > For Parents > Delayed Speech or Language ... your child is right on schedule. Normal Speech & Language Development It's important to discuss early speech and ...

  3. Classroom acoustics: Three pilot studies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smaldino, Joseph J.

    2005-04-01

    This paper summarizes three related pilot projects designed to focus on the possible effects of classroom acoustics on fine auditory discrimination as it relates to language acquisition, especially English as a second language. The first study investigated the influence of improving the signal-to-noise ratio on the differentiation of English phonemes. The results showed better differentiation with better signal-to-noise ratio. The second studied speech perception in noise by young adults for whom English was a second language. The outcome indicated that the second language learners required a better signal-to-noise ratio to perform equally to the native language participants. The last study surveyed the acoustic conditions of preschool and day care classrooms, wherein first and second language learning occurs. The survey suggested an unfavorable acoustic environment for language learning.

  4. Linguistic aspects of speech synthesis.

    PubMed

    Allen, J

    1995-10-24

    The conversion of text to speech is seen as an analysis of the input text to obtain a common underlying linguistic description, followed by a synthesis of the output speech waveform from this fundamental specification. Hence, the comprehensive linguistic structure serving as the substrate for an utterance must be discovered by analysis from the text. The pronunciation of individual words in unrestricted text is determined by morphological analysis or letter-to-sound conversion, followed by specification of the word-level stress contour. In addition, many text character strings, such as titles, numbers, and acronyms, are abbreviations for normal words, which must be derived. To further refine these pronunciations and to discover the prosodic structure of the utterance, word part of speech must be computed, followed by a phrase-level parsing. From this structure the prosodic structure of the utterance can be determined, which is needed in order to specify the durational framework and fundamental frequency contour of the utterance. In discourse contexts, several factors such as the specification of new and old information, contrast, and pronominal reference can be used to further modify the prosodic specification. When the prosodic correlates have been computed and the segmental sequence is assembled, a complete input suitable for speech synthesis has been determined. Lastly, multilingual systems utilizing rule frameworks are mentioned, and future directions are characterized. PMID:7479807

  5. Preparing an E-learning-based Speech Therapy (EST) efficacy study: Identifying suitable outcome measures to detect within-subject changes of speech intelligibility in dysarthric speakers.

    PubMed

    Beijer, L J; Rietveld, A C M; Ruiter, M B; Geurts, A C H

    2014-12-01

    We explored the suitability of perceptual and acoustic outcome measures to prepare E-learning based Speech Therapy (EST) efficacy tests regarding speech intelligibility in dysarthric speakers. Eight speakers with stroke (n=3), Parkinson's disease (n=4) and traumatic brain injury (n=1) participated in a 4 weeks EST trial. A repeated measures design was employed. Perceptual measures were (a) scale ratings for "ease of intelligibility" and "pleasantness" in continuous speech and (b) orthographic transcription scores of semantically unpredictable sentences. Acoustic measures were (c) "intensity during closure" (ΔIDC) in the occlusion phase of voiceless plosives, (d) changes in the vowel space of /a/, /e/ and /o/ and (e) the F0 variability in semantically unpredictable sentences. The only consistent finding concerned an increased (instead of the expected decreased) ΔIDC after EST, possibly caused by increased speech intensity without articulatory adjustments. The importance of suitable perceptual and acoustic measures for efficacy research is discussed.

  6. Preparing an E-learning-based Speech Therapy (EST) efficacy study: Identifying suitable outcome measures to detect within-subject changes of speech intelligibility in dysarthric speakers.

    PubMed

    Beijer, L J; Rietveld, A C M; Ruiter, M B; Geurts, A C H

    2014-12-01

    We explored the suitability of perceptual and acoustic outcome measures to prepare E-learning based Speech Therapy (EST) efficacy tests regarding speech intelligibility in dysarthric speakers. Eight speakers with stroke (n=3), Parkinson's disease (n=4) and traumatic brain injury (n=1) participated in a 4 weeks EST trial. A repeated measures design was employed. Perceptual measures were (a) scale ratings for "ease of intelligibility" and "pleasantness" in continuous speech and (b) orthographic transcription scores of semantically unpredictable sentences. Acoustic measures were (c) "intensity during closure" (ΔIDC) in the occlusion phase of voiceless plosives, (d) changes in the vowel space of /a/, /e/ and /o/ and (e) the F0 variability in semantically unpredictable sentences. The only consistent finding concerned an increased (instead of the expected decreased) ΔIDC after EST, possibly caused by increased speech intensity without articulatory adjustments. The importance of suitable perceptual and acoustic measures for efficacy research is discussed. PMID:25025268

  7. Acoustical evaluation of preschool classrooms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Wonyoung; Hodgson, Murray

    2003-10-01

    An investigation was made of the acoustical environments in the Berwick Preschool, Vancouver, in response to complaints by the teachers. Reverberation times (RT), background noise levels (BNL), and in-class sound levels (Leq) were measured for acoustical evaluation in the classrooms. With respect to the measured RT and BNL, none of the classrooms in the preschool were acceptable according to the criteria relevant to this study. A questionnaire was administered to the teachers to assess their subjective responses to the acoustical and nonacoustical environments of the classrooms. Teachers agreed that the nonacoustical environments in the classrooms were fair, but that the acoustical environments had problems. Eight different classroom configurations were simulated to improve the acoustical environments, using the CATT room acoustical simulation program. When the surface absorption was increased, both the RT and speech levels decreased. RASTI was dependent on the volumes of the classrooms when the background noise levels were high; however, it depended on the total absorption of the classrooms when the background noise levels were low. Ceiling heights are critical as well. It is recommended that decreasing the volume of the classrooms is effective. Sound absorptive materials should be added to the walls or ceiling.

  8. Classroom acoustics and intervention strategies to enhance the learning environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Savage, Christal

    The classroom environment can be an acoustically difficult atmosphere for students to learn effectively, sometimes due in part to poor acoustical properties. Noise and reverberation have a substantial influence on room acoustics and subsequently intelligibility of speech. The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA, 1995) developed minimal standards for noise and reverberation in a classroom for the purpose of providing an adequate listening environment. A lack of adherence to these standards may have undesirable consequences, which may lead to poor academic performance. The purpose of this capstone project is to develop a protocol to measure the acoustical properties of reverberation time and noise levels in elementary classrooms and present the educators with strategies to improve the learning environment. Noise level and reverberation will be measured and recorded in seven, unoccupied third grade classrooms in Lincoln Parish in North Louisiana. The recordings will occur at six specific distances in the classroom to simulate teacher and student positions. The recordings will be compared to the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association standards for noise and reverberation. If discrepancies are observed, the primary investigator will serve as an auditory consultant for the school and educators to recommend remediation and intervention strategies to improve these acoustical properties. The hypothesis of the study is that the classroom acoustical properties of noise and reverberation will exceed the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association standards; therefore, the auditory consultant will provide strategies to improve those acoustical properties.

  9. Parents' Speech and Children's Stuttering: A Critique of the Literature.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nippold, Marilyn A.; Rudzinski, Mishelle

    1995-01-01

    This critical review of the literature finds little evidence to indicate that parents of children who stutter differ from parents of children who do not stutter in the way they talk with their children. Similarly, there is little support that parents' speech behaviors contribute to children's stuttering or that modifying parents' speech behaviors…

  10. Speaker verification system using acoustic data and non-acoustic data

    DOEpatents

    Gable, Todd J.; Ng, Lawrence C.; Holzrichter, John F.; Burnett, Greg C.

    2006-03-21

    A method and system for speech characterization. One embodiment includes a method for speaker verification which includes collecting data from a speaker, wherein the data comprises acoustic data and non-acoustic data. The data is used to generate a template that includes a first set of "template" parameters. The method further includes receiving a real-time identity claim from a claimant, and using acoustic data and non-acoustic data from the identity claim to generate a second set of parameters. The method further includes comparing the first set of parameters to the set of parameters to determine whether the claimant is the speaker. The first set of parameters and the second set of parameters include at least one purely non-acoustic parameter, including a non-acoustic glottal shape parameter derived from averaging multiple glottal cycle waveforms.

  11. Measurement of acoustical characteristics of mosques in Saudi Arabia.

    PubMed

    Abdou, Adel A

    2003-03-01

    The study of mosque acoustics, with regard to acoustical characteristics, sound quality for speech intelligibility, and other applicable acoustic criteria, has been largely neglected. In this study a background as to why mosques are designed as they are and how mosque design is influenced by worship considerations is given. In the study the acoustical characteristics of typically constructed contemporary mosques in Saudi Arabia have been investigated, employing a well-known impulse response. Extensive field measurements were taken in 21 representative mosques of different sizes and architectural features in order to characterize their acoustical quality and to identify the impact of air conditioning, ceiling fans, and sound reinforcement systems on their acoustics. Objective room-acoustic indicators such as reverberation time (RT) and clarity (C50) were measured. Background noise (BN) was assessed with and without the operation of air conditioning and fans. The speech transmission index (STI) was also evaluated with and without the operation of existing sound reinforcement systems. The existence of acoustical deficiencies was confirmed and quantified. The study, in addition to describing mosque acoustics, compares design goals to results obtained in practice and suggests acoustical target values for mosque design. The results show that acoustical quality in the investigated mosques deviates from optimum conditions when unoccupied, but is much better in the occupied condition.

  12. Topological Acoustics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Zhaoju; Gao, Fei; Shi, Xihang; Lin, Xiao; Gao, Zhen; Chong, Yidong; Zhang, Baile

    2015-03-01

    The manipulation of acoustic wave propagation in fluids has numerous applications, including some in everyday life. Acoustic technologies frequently develop in tandem with optics, using shared concepts such as waveguiding and metamedia. It is thus noteworthy that an entirely novel class of electromagnetic waves, known as "topological edge states," has recently been demonstrated. These are inspired by the electronic edge states occurring in topological insulators, and possess a striking and technologically promising property: the ability to travel in a single direction along a surface without backscattering, regardless of the existence of defects or disorder. Here, we develop an analogous theory of topological fluid acoustics, and propose a scheme for realizing topological edge states in an acoustic structure containing circulating fluids. The phenomenon of disorder-free one-way sound propagation, which does not occur in ordinary acoustic devices, may have novel applications for acoustic isolators, modulators, and transducers.

  13. Topological acoustics.

    PubMed

    Yang, Zhaoju; Gao, Fei; Shi, Xihang; Lin, Xiao; Gao, Zhen; Chong, Yidong; Zhang, Baile

    2015-03-20

    The manipulation of acoustic wave propagation in fluids has numerous applications, including some in everyday life. Acoustic technologies frequently develop in tandem with optics, using shared concepts such as waveguiding and metamedia. It is thus noteworthy that an entirely novel class of electromagnetic waves, known as "topological edge states," has recently been demonstrated. These are inspired by the electronic edge states occurring in topological insulators, and possess a striking and technologically promising property: the ability to travel in a single direction along a surface without backscattering, regardless of the existence of defects or disorder. Here, we develop an analogous theory of topological fluid acoustics, and propose a scheme for realizing topological edge states in an acoustic structure containing circulating fluids. The phenomenon of disorder-free one-way sound propagation, which does not occur in ordinary acoustic devices, may have novel applications for acoustic isolators, modulators, and transducers.

  14. Acoustics, computers and measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Truchard, James J.

    2003-10-01

    The human ear has created a high standard for the requirements of acoustical measurements. The transient nature of most acoustical signals has limited the success of traditional volt meters. Professor Hixson's pioneering work in electroacoustical measurements at ARL and The University of Texas helped set the stage for modern computer-based measurements. The tremendous performance of modern PCs and extensive libraries of signal processing functions in virtual instrumentation application software has revolutionized the way acoustical measurements are made. Today's analog to digital converters have up to 24 bits of resolution with a dynamic range of over 120 dB and a single PC processor can process 112 channels of FFTs at 4 kHz in real time. Wavelet technology further extends the capabilities for analyzing transients. The tools available for measurements in speech, electroacoustics, noise, and vibration represent some of the most advanced measurement tools available. During the last 50 years, Professor Hixson has helped drive this revolution from simple oscilloscope measurements to the modern high performance computer-based measurements.

  15. Cortical processing of degraded speech sounds: effects of distortion type and continuity.

    PubMed

    Miettinen, Ismo; Alku, Paavo; Yrttiaho, Santeri; May, Patrick J C; Tiitinen, Hannu

    2012-04-01

    Human speech perception is highly resilient to acoustic distortions. In addition to distortions from external sound sources, degradation of the acoustic structure of the sound itself can substantially reduce the intelligibility of speech. The degradation of the internal structure of speech happens, for example, when the digital representation of the signal is impoverished by reducing its amplitude resolution. Further, the perception of speech is also influenced by whether the distortion is transient, coinciding with speech, or is heard continuously in the background. However, the complex effects of the acoustic structure and continuity of the distortion on the cortical processing of degraded speech are unclear. In the present magnetoencephalography study, we investigated how the cortical processing of degraded speech sounds as measured through the auditory N1m response is affected by variation of both the distortion type (internal, external) and the continuity of distortion (transient, continuous). We found that when the distortion was continuous, the N1m was significantly delayed, regardless of the type of distortion. The N1m amplitude, in turn, was affected only when speech sounds were degraded with transient internal distortion, which resulted in larger response amplitudes. The results suggest that external and internal distortions of speech result in divergent patterns of activity in the auditory cortex, and that the effects are modulated by the temporal continuity of the distortion.

  16. Use of amplitude modulation cues recovered from frequency modulation for cochlear implant users when original speech cues are severely degraded.

    PubMed

    Won, Jong Ho; Shim, Hyun Joon; Lorenzi, Christian; Rubinstein, Jay T

    2014-06-01

    Won et al. (J Acoust Soc Am 132:1113-1119, 2012) reported that cochlear implant (CI) speech processors generate amplitude-modulation (AM) cues recovered from broadband speech frequency modulation (FM) and that CI users can use these cues for speech identification in quiet. The present study was designed to extend this finding for a wide range of listening conditions, where the original speech cues were severely degraded by manipulating either the acoustic signals or the speech processor. The manipulation of the acoustic signals included the presentation of background noise, simulation of reverberation, and amplitude compression. The manipulation of the speech processor included changing the input dynamic range and the number of channels. For each of these conditions, multiple levels of speech degradation were tested. Speech identification was measured for CI users and compared for stimuli having both AM and FM information (intact condition) or FM information only (FM condition). Each manipulation degraded speech identification performance for both intact and FM conditions. Performance for the intact and FM conditions became similar for stimuli having the most severe degradations. Identification performance generally overlapped for the intact and FM conditions. Moreover, identification performance for the FM condition was better than chance performance even at the maximum level of distortion. Finally, significant correlations were found between speech identification scores for the intact and FM conditions. Altogether, these results suggest that despite poor frequency selectivity, CI users can make efficient use of AM cues recovered from speech FM in difficult listening situations.

  17. Speech impairment (adult)

    MedlinePlus

    Language impairment; Impairment of speech; Inability to speak; Aphasia; Dysarthria; Slurred speech; Dysphonia voice disorders ... environment and keep external stimuli to a minimum. Speak in a normal tone of voice (this condition ...

  18. Auditory perception bias in speech imitation

    PubMed Central

    Postma-Nilsenová, Marie; Postma, Eric

    2013-01-01

    In an experimental study, we explored the role of auditory perception bias in vocal pitch imitation. Psychoacoustic tasks involving a missing fundamental indicate that some listeners are attuned to the relationship between all the higher harmonics present in the signal, which supports their perception of the fundamental frequency (the primary acoustic correlate of pitch). Other listeners focus on the lowest harmonic constituents of the complex sound signal which may hamper the perception of the fundamental. These two listener types are referred to as fundamental and spectral listeners, respectively. We hypothesized that the individual differences in speakers' capacity to imitate F0 found in earlier studies, may at least partly be due to the capacity to extract information about F0 from the speech signal. Participants' auditory perception bias was determined with a standard missing fundamental perceptual test. Subsequently, speech data were collected in a shadowing task with two conditions, one with a full speech signal and one with high-pass filtered speech above 300 Hz. The results showed that perception bias toward fundamental frequency was related to the degree of F0 imitation. The effect was stronger in the condition with high-pass filtered speech. The experimental outcomes suggest advantages for fundamental listeners in communicative situations where F0 imitation is used as a behavioral cue. Future research needs to determine to what extent auditory perception bias may be related to other individual properties known to improve imitation, such as phonetic talent. PMID:24204361

  19. Information-bearing acoustic change outperforms duration in predicting intelligibility of full-spectrum and noise-vocoded sentences.

    PubMed

    Stilp, Christian E

    2014-03-01

    Recent research has demonstrated a strong relationship between information-bearing acoustic changes in the speech signal and speech intelligibility. The availability of information-bearing acoustic changes reliably predicts intelligibility of full-spectrum [Stilp and Kluender (2010). Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 107(27), 12387-12392] and noise-vocoded sentences amid noise interruption [Stilp et al. (2013). J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 133(2), EL136-EL141]. However, other research reports that proportion of signal duration preserved also predicts intelligibility of noise-interrupted speech. These factors have only ever been investigated independently, obscuring whether one better explains speech perception. The present experiments manipulated both factors to answer this question. A broad range of sentence durations (160-480 ms) containing high or low information-bearing acoustic changes were replaced by speech-shaped noise in noise-vocoded (Experiment 1) and full-spectrum sentences (Experiment 2). Sentence intelligibility worsened with increasing noise replacement, but in both experiments, information-bearing acoustic change was a statistically superior predictor of performance. Perception relied more heavily on information-bearing acoustic changes in poorer listening conditions (in spectrally degraded sentences and amid increasing noise replacement). Highly linear relationships between measures of information and performance suggest that exploiting information-bearing acoustic change is a shared principle underlying perception of acoustically rich and degraded speech. Results demonstrate the explanatory power of information-theoretic approaches for speech perception.

  20. SPEECH HANDICAPPED SCHOOL CHILDREN.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    JOHNSON, WENDELL; AND OTHERS

    THIS BOOK IS DESIGNED PRIMARILY FOR STUDENTS WHO ARE BEING TRAINED TO WORK WITH SPEECH HANDICAPPED SCHOOL CHILDREN, EITHER AS SPEECH CORRECTIONISTS OR AS CLASSROOM TEACHERS. THE BOOK DEALS WITH FOUR MAJOR QUESTIONS--(1) WHAT KINDS OF SPEECH DISORDERS ARE FOUND AMONG SCHOOL CHILDREN, (2) WHAT ARE THE PHYSICAL, PSYCHOLOGICAL AND SOCIAL CONDITIONS,…

  1. Free Speech Yearbook 1978.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Phifer, Gregg, Ed.

    The 17 articles in this collection deal with theoretical and practical freedom of speech issues. The topics include: freedom of speech in Marquette Park, Illinois; Nazis in Skokie, Illinois; freedom of expression in the Confederate States of America; Robert M. LaFollette's arguments for free speech and the rights of Congress; the United States…

  2. Talking Speech Input.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Berliss-Vincent, Jane; Whitford, Gigi

    2002-01-01

    This article presents both the factors involved in successful speech input use and the potential barriers that may suggest that other access technologies could be more appropriate for a given individual. Speech input options that are available are reviewed and strategies for optimizing use of speech recognition technology are discussed. (Contains…

  3. Speech 7 through 12.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nederland Independent School District, TX.

    GRADES OR AGES: Grades 7 through 12. SUBJECT MATTER: Speech. ORGANIZATION AND PHYSICAL APPEARANCE: Following the foreward, philosophy and objectives, this guide presents a speech curriculum. The curriculum covers junior high and Speech I, II, III (senior high). Thirteen units of study are presented for junior high, each unit is divided into…

  4. Speech and Language Delay

    MedlinePlus

    MENU Return to Web version Speech and Language Delay Overview How do I know if my child has speech delay? Every child develops at his or her ... of the same age, the problem may be speech delay. Your doctor may think your child has ...

  5. The Limits of Speech.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shea, Christopher

    1993-01-01

    Colleges and universities are finding it difficult to mold administrative policy concerning freedom of speech on campus. Even when speech or harassment codes mirror federal guidelines for antidiscrimination policy, controversy is common. Potential infringement on rights to free speech is the central issue. (MSE)

  6. Physical properties of modification of speech signal fragments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gusev, Mikhail N.

    2004-04-01

    The methods used for modification of separate speech signals fragments in the process of speech synthesis by arbitrary text are described in this report. Three groups of sounds differ in the modification methods of frequency characteristics. Two groups of sounds differ in that they need different methods of duration changes. To modify the samples of a speaker's voice by the methods used it is necessary to make pre-marking, so called segementation. As variable speech fragments, the allophones are taken. The modification methods described allow form arbitrary speech successions in the wide intonation diapason on the basis of limited amount of the speaker's voice patterns.

  7. A Comparison of the Speech Patterns and Dialect Attitudes of Oklahoma

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bakos, Jon

    2013-01-01

    The lexical dialect usage of Oklahoma has been well-studied in the past by the Survey of Oklahoma Dialects, but the acoustic speech production of the state has received little attention. Apart from two people from Tulsa and two people from Oklahoma City that were interviewed for the Atlas of North American English, no other acoustic work has been…

  8. Acoustic constituents of prosodic typology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Komatsu, Masahiko

    Different languages sound different, and considerable part of it derives from the typological difference of prosody. Although such difference is often referred to as lexical accent types (stress accent, pitch accent, and tone; e.g. English, Japanese, and Chinese respectively) and rhythm types (stress-, syllable-, and mora-timed rhythms; e.g. English, Spanish, and Japanese respectively), it is unclear whether these types are determined in terms of acoustic properties, The thesis intends to provide a potential basis for the description of prosody in terms of acoustics. It argues for the hypothesis that the source component of the source-filter model (acoustic features) approximately corresponds to prosody (linguistic features) through several experimental-phonetic studies. The study consists of four parts. (1) Preliminary experiment: Perceptual language identification tests were performed using English and Japanese speech samples whose frequency spectral information (i.e. non-source component) is heavily reduced. The results indicated that humans can discriminate languages with such signals. (2) Discussion on the linguistic information that the source component contains: This part constitutes the foundation of the argument of the thesis. Perception tests of consonants with the source signal indicated that the source component carries the information on broad categories of phonemes that contributes to the creation of rhythm. (3) Acoustic analysis: The speech samples of Chinese, English, Japanese, and Spanish, differing in prosodic types, were analyzed. These languages showed difference in acoustic characteristics of the source component. (4) Perceptual experiment: A language identification test for the above four languages was performed using the source signal with its acoustic features parameterized. It revealed that humans can discriminate prosodic types solely with the source features and that the discrimination is easier as acoustic information increases. The

  9. Neurophysiological evidence that musical training influences the recruitment of right hemispheric homologues for speech perception.

    PubMed

    Jantzen, McNeel G; Howe, Bradley M; Jantzen, Kelly J

    2014-01-01

    Musicians have a more accurate temporal and tonal representation of auditory stimuli than their non-musician counterparts (Musacchia et al., 2007; Parbery-Clark et al., 2009a; Zendel and Alain, 2009; Kraus and Chandrasekaran, 2010). Musicians who are adept at the production and perception of music are also more sensitive to key acoustic features of speech such as voice onset timing and pitch. Together, these data suggest that musical training may enhance the processing of acoustic information for speech sounds. In the current study, we sought to provide neural evidence that musicians process speech and music in a similar way. We hypothesized that for musicians, right hemisphere areas traditionally associated with music are also engaged for the processing of speech sounds. In contrast we predicted that in non-musicians processing of speech sounds would be localized to traditional left hemisphere language areas. Speech stimuli differing in voice onset time was presented using a dichotic listening paradigm. Subjects either indicated aural location for a specified speech sound or identified a specific speech sound from a directed aural location. Musical training effects and organization of acoustic features were reflected by activity in source generators of the P50. This included greater activation of right middle temporal gyrus and superior temporal gyrus in musicians. The findings demonstrate recruitment of right hemisphere in musicians for discriminating speech sounds and a putative broadening of their language network. Musicians appear to have an increased sensitivity to acoustic features and enhanced selective attention to temporal features of speech that is facilitated by musical training and supported, in part, by right hemisphere homologues of established speech processing regions of the brain. PMID:24624107

  10. On learning to recognize spectrally reduced speech: II. Individual differences

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chiu, Peter; Eng, Michelle; Strange, Bethany; Yampolsky, Sasha; Waters, Gloria

    2002-05-01

    When patients with cochlear implants attempt speech recognition, or when listeners with normal hearing try to recognize spectrally reduced speech, performance may suffer because of additional demands on cognitive resources imposed by sensory degradation. Some previous studies have reported a significant correlation between digit span and recognition of spectrally reduced speech, but others have not [Eisenberg et al., J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 107, 2704-2710 (2000)]. In this study, we administered 3 separate measures of working memory capacity (i.e., digit span, alphabet span, and sentence span) and 1 measure of reading ability (American National Adult Reading Test, ANART) to normal-hearing listeners who participated in our previous studies [Chiu et al., J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 109, 2501 (2001) and Fishbeck and Chiu, J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 109, 2504 (2001)]. Preliminary data show that the listener's ability to recognize spectrally reduced speech shows the strongest relationship with ANART scores and the weakest relationship with digit span. Implications of the current findings on theories of speech recognition and working memory will be discussed. [Work supported by URC, Univ. of Cincinnati.

  11. Musical Acoustics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gough, Colin

    This chapter provides an introduction to the physical and psycho-acoustic principles underlying the production and perception of the sounds of musical instruments. The first section introduces generic aspects of musical acoustics and the perception of musical sounds, followed by separate sections on string, wind and percussion instruments.

  12. A modeling investigation of vowel-to-vowel movement planning in acoustic and muscle spaces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zandipour, Majid

    The primary objective of this research was to explore the coordinate space in which speech movements are planned. A two dimensional biomechanical model of the vocal tract (tongue, lips, jaw, and pharynx) was constructed based on anatomical and physiological data from a subject. The model transforms neural command signals into the actions of muscles. The tongue was modeled by a 221-node finite element mesh. Each of the eight tongue muscles defined within the mesh was controlled by a virtual muscle model. The other vocal-tract components were modeled as simple 2nd-order systems. The model's geometry was adapted to a speaker, using MRI scans of the speaker's vocal tract. The vocal tract model, combined with an adaptive controller that consisted of a forward model (mapping 12-dimensional motor commands to a 64-dimensional acoustic spectrum) and an inverse model (mapping acoustic trajectories to motor command trajectories), was used to simulate and explore the implications of two planning hypotheses: planning in motor space vs. acoustic space. The acoustic, kinematic, and muscle activation (EMG) patterns of vowel-to-vowel sequences generated by the model were compared to data from the speaker whose acoustic, kinematic and EMG were also recorded. The simulation results showed that: (a) modulations of the motor commands effectively accounted for the effects of speaking rate on EMG, kinematic, and acoustic outputs; (b) the movement and acoustic trajectories were influenced by vocal tract biomechanics; and (c) both planning schemes produced similar articulatory movement, EMG, muscle length, force, and acoustic trajectories, which were also comparable to the subject's data under normal speaking conditions. In addition, the effects of a bite-block on measured EMG, kinematics and formants were simulated by the model. Acoustic planning produced successful simulations but motor planning did not. The simulation results suggest that with somatosensory feedback but no auditory

  13. Applications of Hilbert Spectral Analysis for Speech and Sound Signals

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Huang, Norden E.

    2003-01-01

    A new method for analyzing nonlinear and nonstationary data has been developed, and the natural applications are to speech and sound signals. The key part of the method is the Empirical Mode Decomposition method with which any complicated data set can be decomposed into a finite and often small number of Intrinsic Mode Functions (IMF). An IMF is defined as any function having the same numbers of zero-crossing and extrema, and also having symmetric envelopes defined by the local maxima and minima respectively. The IMF also admits well-behaved Hilbert transform. This decomposition method is adaptive, and, therefore, highly efficient. Since the decomposition is based on the local characteristic time scale of the data, it is applicable to nonlinear and nonstationary processes. With the Hilbert transform, the Intrinsic Mode Functions yield instantaneous frequencies as functions of time, which give sharp identifications of imbedded structures. This method invention can be used to process all acoustic signals. Specifically, it can process the speech signals for Speech synthesis, Speaker identification and verification, Speech recognition, and Sound signal enhancement and filtering. Additionally, as the acoustical signals from machinery are essentially the way the machines are talking to us. Therefore, the acoustical signals, from the machines, either from sound through air or vibration on the machines, can tell us the operating conditions of the machines. Thus, we can use the acoustic signal to diagnosis the problems of machines.

  14. The Role of the Listener's State in Speech Perception

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Viswanathan, Navin

    2009-01-01

    Accounts of speech perception disagree on whether listeners perceive the acoustic signal (Diehl, Lotto, & Holt, 2004) or the vocal tract gestures that produce the signal (e.g., Fowler, 1986). In this dissertation, I outline a research program using a phenomenon called "perceptual compensation for coarticulation" (Mann, 1980) to examine this…

  15. Speech Research Status Report, July-December 1992.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fowler, Carol A., Ed.

    One of a series of semi-annual reports, this publication contains 25 articles which report the status and progress of studies on the nature of speech, instruments for its investigation, and practical applications. Articles are as follows: "Acoustic Shards, Perceptual Glue" (Robert E. Remez and Philip E. Rubin); "F0 Gives Voicing Information Even…

  16. Speech prosody in Friedreich's and olivo-ponto cerebellar atrophy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Casper, Maureen

    2001-05-01

    A critical issue in the study of speech motor control is the identification of the mechanisms that generate the temporal flow of serially ordered articulatory events. Two staged models of serial ordered events (Lashley, 1951; Lindblom, 1963) claim that time controls events whereas dynamic models predict a relative relation between time and space. Each of these models predicts a different relation between the acoustic measures of formant frequency and segmental duration. The most recent method described herein provides a sensitive index of speech deterioration which is both acoustically robust and phonetically systematic. Both acoustic and magnetic resonance imaging measures were used to describe the speech disturbance in two neurologically distinct groups of cerebellar ataxia: Friedreich's ataxia and olivo-ponto cerebellar ataxia. The speaking task was designed to elicit six different prosodic conditions and four prosodic contrasts. All subjects read the same syllable embedded in a sentence, under six different prosodic conditions. Pair-wise comparisons derived from the six conditions were used to describe (1) final lengthening, (2) phrasal accent, (3) nuclear accent and (4) syllable reduction. An estimate of speech deterioration as determined by individual and normal subects' acoustic values of syllable duration, formant and fundamental frequencies was used in correlation analyses with magnetic resonance imaging ratings.

  17. Inconsistency of speech in children with childhood apraxia of speech, phonological disorders, and typical speech

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Iuzzini, Jenya

    There is a lack of agreement on the features used to differentiate Childhood Apraxia of Speech (CAS) from Phonological Disorders (PD). One criterion which has gained consensus is lexical inconsistency of speech (ASHA, 2007); however, no accepted measure of this feature has been defined. Although lexical assessment provides information about consistency of an item across repeated trials, it may not capture the magnitude of inconsistency within an item. In contrast, segmental analysis provides more extensive information about consistency of phoneme usage across multiple contexts and word-positions. The current research compared segmental and lexical inconsistency metrics in preschool-aged children with PD, CAS, and typical development (TD) to determine how inconsistency varies with age in typical and disordered speakers, and whether CAS and PD were differentiated equally well by both assessment levels. Whereas lexical and segmental analyses may be influenced by listener characteristics or speaker intelligibility, the acoustic signal is less vulnerable to these factors. In addition, the acoustic signal may reveal information which is not evident in the perceptual signal. A second focus of the current research was motivated by Blumstein et al.'s (1980) classic study on voice onset time (VOT) in adults with acquired apraxia of speech (AOS) which demonstrated a motor impairment underlying AOS. In the current study, VOT analyses were conducted to determine the relationship between age and group with the voicing distribution for bilabial and alveolar plosives. Findings revealed that 3-year-olds evidenced significantly higher inconsistency than 5-year-olds; segmental inconsistency approached 0% in 5-year-olds with TD, whereas it persisted in children with PD and CAS suggesting that for child in this age-range, inconsistency is a feature of speech disorder rather than typical development (Holm et al., 2007). Likewise, whereas segmental and lexical inconsistency were

  18. Acoustic metafluids.

    PubMed

    Norris, Andrew N

    2009-02-01

    Acoustic metafluids are defined as the class of fluids that allow one domain of fluid to acoustically mimic another, as exemplified by acoustic cloaks. It is shown that the most general class of acoustic metafluids are materials with anisotropic inertia and the elastic properties of what are known as pentamode materials. The derivation uses the notion of finite deformation to define the transformation of one region to another. The main result is found by considering energy density in the original and transformed regions. Properties of acoustic metafluids are discussed, and general conditions are found which ensure that the mapped fluid has isotropic inertia, which potentially opens up the possibility of achieving broadband cloaking. PMID:19206861

  19. Auditory-Motor Expertise Alters “Speech Selectivity” in Professional Musicians and Actors

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Hwee Ling; Nusbaum, Howard; Price, Cathy J.

    2011-01-01

    Several perisylvian brain regions show preferential activation for spoken language above and beyond other complex sounds. These “speech-selective” effects might be driven by regions’ intrinsic biases for processing the acoustical or informational properties of speech. Alternatively, such speech selectivity might emerge through extensive experience in perceiving and producing speech sounds. This functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) study disambiguated such audiomotor expertise from speech selectivity by comparing activation for listening to speech and music in female professional violinists and actors. Audiomotor expertise effects were identified in several right and left superior temporal regions that responded to speech in all participants and music in violinists more than actresses. Regions associated with the acoustic/information content of speech were identified along the entire length of the superior temporal sulci bilaterally where activation was greater for speech than music in all participants. Finally, an effect of performing arts training was identified in bilateral premotor regions commonly activated by finger and mouth movements as well as in right hemisphere “language regions.” These results distinguish the seemingly speech-specific neural responses that can be abolished and even reversed by long-term audiomotor experience. PMID:20829245

  20. Children's perception of their synthetically corrected speech production.

    PubMed

    Strömbergsson, Sofia; Wengelin, Asa; House, David

    2014-06-01

    We explore children's perception of their own speech - in its online form, in its recorded form, and in synthetically modified forms. Children with phonological disorder (PD) and children with typical speech and language development (TD) performed tasks of evaluating accuracy of the different types of speech stimuli, either immediately after having produced the utterance or after a delay. In addition, they performed a task designed to assess their ability to detect synthetic modification. Both groups showed high performance in tasks involving evaluation of other children's speech, whereas in tasks of evaluating one's own speech, the children with PD were less accurate than their TD peers. The children with PD were less sensitive to misproductions in immediate conjunction with their production of an utterance, and more accurate after a delay. Within-category modification often passed undetected, indicating a satisfactory quality of the generated speech. Potential clinical benefits of using corrective re-synthesis are discussed.

  1. Visual Feedback of Tongue Movement for Novel Speech Sound Learning.

    PubMed

    Katz, William F; Mehta, Sonya

    2015-01-01

    Pronunciation training studies have yielded important information concerning the processing of audiovisual (AV) information. Second language (L2) learners show increased reliance on bottom-up, multimodal input for speech perception (compared to monolingual individuals). However, little is known about the role of viewing one's own speech articulation processes during speech training. The current study investigated whether real-time, visual feedback for tongue movement can improve a speaker's learning of non-native speech sounds. An interactive 3D tongue visualization system based on electromagnetic articulography (EMA) was used in a speech training experiment. Native speakers of American English produced a novel speech sound (/ɖ/; a voiced, coronal, palatal stop) before, during, and after trials in which they viewed their own speech movements using the 3D model. Talkers' productions were evaluated using kinematic (tongue-tip spatial positioning) and acoustic (burst spectra) measures. The results indicated a rapid gain in accuracy associated with visual feedback training. The findings are discussed with respect to neural models for multimodal speech processing. PMID:26635571

  2. Temporal lobe regions engaged during normal speech comprehension.

    PubMed

    Crinion, Jennifer T; Lambon-Ralph, Matthew A; Warburton, Elizabeth A; Howard, David; Wise, Richard J S

    2003-05-01

    Processing of speech is obligatory. Thus, during normal speech comprehension, the listener is aware of the overall meaning of the speaker's utterance without the need to direct attention to individual linguistic and paralinguistic (intonational, prosodic, etc.) features contained within the speech signal. However, most functional neuroimaging studies of speech perception have used metalinguistic tasks that required the subjects to attend to specific features of the stimuli. Such tasks have demanded a forced-choice decision and a motor response from the subjects, which will engage frontal systems and may include unpredictable top-down modulation of the signals observed in one or more of the temporal lobe neural systems engaged during speech perception. This study contrasted the implicit comprehension of simple narrative speech with listening to reversed versions of the narratives: the latter are as acoustically complex as speech but are unintelligible in terms of both linguistic and paralinguistic information. The result demonstrated that normal comprehension, free of task demands that do not form part of everyday discourse, engages regions distributed between the two temporal lobes, more widely on the left. In particular, comprehension is dependent on anterolateral and ventral left temporal regions, as suggested by observations on patients with semantic dementia, as well as posterior regions described in studies on aphasic stroke patients. The only frontal contribution was confined to the ventrolateral left prefrontal cortex, compatible with observations that comprehension of simple speech is preserved in patients with left posterior frontal infarction. PMID:12690058

  3. Processing changes when listening to foreign-accented speech

    PubMed Central

    Romero-Rivas, Carlos; Martin, Clara D.; Costa, Albert

    2015-01-01

    This study investigates the mechanisms responsible for fast changes in processing foreign-accented speech. Event Related brain Potentials (ERPs) were obtained while native speakers of Spanish listened to native and foreign-accented speakers of Spanish. We observed a less positive P200 component for foreign-accented speech relative to native speech comprehension. This suggests that the extraction of spectral information and other important acoustic features was hampered during foreign-accented speech comprehension. However, the amplitude of the N400 component for foreign-accented speech comprehension decreased across the experiment, suggesting the use of a higher level, lexical mechanism. Furthermore, during native speech comprehension, semantic violations in the critical words elicited an N400 effect followed by a late positivity. During foreign-accented speech comprehension, semantic violations only elicited an N400 effect. Overall, our results suggest that, despite a lack of improvement in phonetic discrimination, native listeners experience changes at lexical-semantic levels of processing after brief exposure to foreign-accented speech. Moreover, these results suggest that lexical access, semantic integration and linguistic re-analysis processes are permeable to external factors, such as the accent of the speaker. PMID:25859209

  4. Visual Feedback of Tongue Movement for Novel Speech Sound Learning

    PubMed Central

    Katz, William F.; Mehta, Sonya

    2015-01-01

    Pronunciation training studies have yielded important information concerning the processing of audiovisual (AV) information. Second language (L2) learners show increased reliance on bottom-up, multimodal input for speech perception (compared to monolingual individuals). However, little is known about the role of viewing one's own speech articulation processes during speech training. The current study investigated whether real-time, visual feedback for tongue movement can improve a speaker's learning of non-native speech sounds. An interactive 3D tongue visualization system based on electromagnetic articulography (EMA) was used in a speech training experiment. Native speakers of American English produced a novel speech sound (/ɖ/; a voiced, coronal, palatal stop) before, during, and after trials in which they viewed their own speech movements using the 3D model. Talkers' productions were evaluated using kinematic (tongue-tip spatial positioning) and acoustic (burst spectra) measures. The results indicated a rapid gain in accuracy associated with visual feedback training. The findings are discussed with respect to neural models for multimodal speech processing. PMID:26635571

  5. Cortical tracking of hierarchical linguistic structures in connected speech.

    PubMed

    Ding, Nai; Melloni, Lucia; Zhang, Hang; Tian, Xing; Poeppel, David

    2016-01-01

    The most critical attribute of human language is its unbounded combinatorial nature: smaller elements can be combined into larger structures on the basis of a grammatical system, resulting in a hierarchy of linguistic units, such as words, phrases and sentences. Mentally parsing and representing such structures, however, poses challenges for speech comprehension. In speech, hierarchical linguistic structures do not have boundaries that are clearly defined by acoustic cues and must therefore be internally and incrementally constructed during comprehension. We found that, during listening to connected speech, cortical activity of different timescales concurrently tracked the time course of abstract linguistic structures at different hierarchical levels, such as words, phrases and sentences. Notably, the neural tracking of hierarchical linguistic structures was dissociated from the encoding of acoustic cues and from the predictability of incoming words. Our results indicate that a hierarchy of neural processing timescales underlies grammar-based internal construction of hierarchical linguistic structure.

  6. Cortical Tracking of Hierarchical Linguistic Structures in Connected Speech

    PubMed Central

    Ding, Nai; Melloni, Lucia; Zhang, Hang; Tian, Xing; Poeppel, David

    2016-01-01

    The most critical attribute of human language is its unbounded combinatorial nature: smaller elements can be combined into larger structures based on a grammatical system, resulting in a hierarchy of linguistic units, e.g., words, phrases, and sentences. Mentally parsing and representing such structures, however, poses challenges for speech comprehension. In speech, hierarchical linguistic structures do not have boundaries clearly defined by acoustic cues and must therefore be internally and incrementally constructed during comprehension. Here we demonstrate that during listening to connected speech, cortical activity of different time scales concurrently tracks the time course of abstract linguistic structures at different hierarchical levels, e.g. words, phrases, and sentences. Critically, the neural tracking of hierarchical linguistic structures is dissociated from the encoding of acoustic cues as well as from the predictability of incoming words. The results demonstrate that a hierarchy of neural processing timescales underlies grammar-based internal construction of hierarchical linguistic structure. PMID:26642090

  7. Auditory-tactile echo-reverberating stuttering speech corrector

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuniszyk-Jozkowiak, Wieslawa; Adamczyk, Bogdan

    1997-02-01

    The work presents the construction of a device, which transforms speech sounds into acoustical and tactile signals of echo and reverberation. Research has been done on the influence of the echo and reverberation, which are transmitted as acoustic and tactile stimuli, on speech fluency. Introducing the echo or reverberation into the auditory feedback circuit results in a reduction of stuttering. A bit less, but still significant corrective effects are observed while using the tactile channel for transmitting the signals. The use of joined auditory and tactile channels increases the effects of their corrective influence on the stutterers' speech. The results of the experiment justify the use of the tactile channel in the stutterers' therapy.

  8. The acoustics of snoring.

    PubMed

    Pevernagie, Dirk; Aarts, Ronald M; De Meyer, Micheline

    2010-04-01

    Snoring is a prevalent disorder affecting 20-40% of the general population. The mechanism of snoring is vibration of anatomical structures in the pharyngeal airway. Flutter of the soft palate accounts for the harsh aspect of the snoring sound. Natural or drug-induced sleep is required for its appearance. Snoring is subject to many influences such as body position, sleep stage, route of breathing and the presence or absence of sleep-disordered breathing. Its presentation may be variable within or between nights. While snoring is generally perceived as a social nuisance, rating of its noisiness is subjective and, therefore, inconsistent. Objective assessment of snoring is important to evaluate the effect of treatment interventions. Moreover, snoring carries information relating to the site and degree of obstruction of the upper airway. If evidence for monolevel snoring at the site of the soft palate is provided, the patient may benefit from palatal surgery. These considerations have inspired researchers to scrutinize the acoustic characteristics of snoring events. Similarly to speech, snoring is produced in the vocal tract. Because of this analogy, existing techniques for speech analysis have been applied to evaluate snoring sounds. It appears that the pitch of the snoring sound is in the low-frequency range (<500 Hz) and corresponds to a fundamental frequency with associated harmonics. The pitch of snoring is determined by vibration of the soft palate, while nonpalatal snoring is more 'noise-like', and has scattered energy content in the higher spectral sub-bands (>500 Hz). To evaluate acoustic properties of snoring, sleep nasendoscopy is often performed. Recent evidence suggests that the acoustic quality of snoring is markedly different in drug-induced sleep as compared with natural sleep. Most often, palatal surgery alters sound characteristics of snoring, but is no cure for this disorder. It is uncertain whether the perceived improvement after palatal surgery, as

  9. Speech in spinocerebellar ataxia.

    PubMed

    Schalling, Ellika; Hartelius, Lena

    2013-12-01

    Spinocerebellar ataxias (SCAs) are a heterogeneous group of autosomal dominant cerebellar ataxias clinically characterized by progressive ataxia, dysarthria and a range of other concomitant neurological symptoms. Only a few studies include detailed characterization of speech symptoms in SCA. Speech symptoms in SCA resemble ataxic dysarthria but symptoms related to phonation may be more prominent. One study to date has shown an association between differences in speech and voice symptoms related to genotype. More studies of speech and voice phenotypes are motivated, to possibly aid in clinical diagnosis. In addition, instrumental speech analysis has been demonstrated to be a reliable measure that may be used to monitor disease progression or therapy outcomes in possible future pharmacological treatments. Intervention by speech and language pathologists should go beyond assessment. Clinical guidelines for management of speech, communication and swallowing need to be developed for individuals with progressive cerebellar ataxia.

  10. Speech Acquisition and Automatic Speech Recognition for Integrated Spacesuit Audio Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Huang, Yiteng; Chen, Jingdong; Chen, Shaoyan

    2010-01-01

    A voice-command human-machine interface system has been developed for spacesuit extravehicular activity (EVA) missions. A multichannel acoustic signal processing method has been created for distant speech acquisition in noisy and reverberant environments. This technology reduces noise by exploiting differences in the statistical nature of signal (i.e., speech) and noise that exists in the spatial and temporal domains. As a result, the automatic speech recognition (ASR) accuracy can be improved to the level at which crewmembers would find the speech interface useful. The developed speech human/machine interface will enable both crewmember usability and operational efficiency. It can enjoy a fast rate of data/text entry, small overall size, and can be lightweight. In addition, this design will free the hands and eyes of a suited crewmember. The system components and steps include beam forming/multi-channel noise reduction, single-channel noise reduction, speech feature extraction, feature transformation and normalization, feature compression, model adaption, ASR HMM (Hidden Markov Model) training, and ASR decoding. A state-of-the-art phoneme recognizer can obtain an accuracy rate of 65 percent when the training and testing data are free of noise. When it is used in spacesuits, the rate drops to about 33 percent. With the developed microphone array speech-processing technologies, the performance is improved and the phoneme recognition accuracy rate rises to 44 percent. The recognizer can be further improved by combining the microphone array and HMM model adaptation techniques and using speech samples collected from inside spacesuits. In addition, arithmetic complexity models for the major HMMbased ASR components were developed. They can help real-time ASR system designers select proper tasks when in the face of constraints in computational resources.

  11. Song and speech: examining the link between singing talent and speech imitation ability.

    PubMed

    Christiner, Markus; Reiterer, Susanne M

    2013-01-01

    In previous research on speech imitation, musicality, and an ability to sing were isolated as the strongest indicators of good pronunciation skills in foreign languages. We, therefore, wanted to take a closer look at the nature of the ability to sing, which shares a common ground with the ability to imitate speech. This study focuses on whether good singing performance predicts good speech imitation. Forty-one singers of different levels of proficiency were selected for the study and their ability to sing, to imitate speech, their musical talent and working memory were tested. Results indicated that singing performance is a better indicator of the ability to imitate speech than the playing of a musical instrument. A multiple regression revealed that 64% of the speech imitation score variance could be explained by working memory together with educational background and singing performance. A second multiple regression showed that 66% of the speech imitation variance of completely unintelligible and unfamiliar language stimuli (Hindi) could be explained by working memory together with a singer's sense of rhythm and quality of voice. This supports the idea that both vocal behaviors have a common grounding in terms of vocal and motor flexibility, ontogenetic and phylogenetic development, neural orchestration and auditory memory with singing fitting better into the category of "speech" on the productive level and "music" on the acoustic level. As a result, good singers benefit from vocal and motor flexibility, productively and cognitively, in three ways. (1) Motor flexibility and the ability to sing improve language and musical function. (2) Good singers retain a certain plasticity and are open to new and unusual sound combinations during adulthood both perceptually and productively. (3) The ability to sing improves the memory span of the auditory working memory.

  12. Segmental intelligibility of synthetic speech produced by rule.

    PubMed

    Logan, J S; Greene, B G; Pisoni, D B

    1989-08-01

    This paper reports the results of an investigation that employed the modified rhyme test (MRT) to measure the segmental intelligibility of synthetic speech generated automatically by rule. Synthetic speech produced by ten text-to-speech systems was studied and compared to natural speech. A variation of the standard MRT was also used to study the effects of response set size on perceptual confusions. Results indicated that the segmental intelligibility scores formed a continuum. Several systems displayed very high levels of performance that were close to or equal to scores obtained with natural speech; other systems displayed substantially worse performance compared to natural speech. The overall performance of the best system, DECtalk--Paul, was equivalent to the data obtained with natural speech for consonants in syllable-initial position. The findings from this study are discussed in terms of the use of a set of standardized procedures for measuring intelligibility of synthetic speech under controlled laboratory conditions. Recent work investigating the perception of synthetic speech under more severe conditions in which greater demands are made on the listener's processing resources is also considered. The wide range of intelligibility scores obtained in the present study demonstrates important differences in perception and suggests that not all synthetic speech is perceptually equivalent to the listener. PMID:2527884

  13. Suppression of competing speech through entrainment of cortical oscillations.

    PubMed

    Horton, Cort; D'Zmura, Michael; Srinivasan, Ramesh

    2013-06-01

    People are highly skilled at attending to one speaker in the presence of competitors, but the neural mechanisms supporting this remain unclear. Recent studies have argued that the auditory system enhances the gain of a speech stream relative to competitors by entraining (or "phase-locking") to the rhythmic structure in its acoustic envelope, thus ensuring that syllables arrive during periods of high neuronal excitability. We hypothesized that such a mechanism could also suppress a competing speech stream by ensuring that syllables arrive during periods of low neuronal excitability. To test this, we analyzed high-density EEG recorded from human adults while they attended to one of two competing, naturalistic speech streams. By calculating the cross-correlation between the EEG channels and the speech envelopes, we found evidence of entrainment to the attended speech's acoustic envelope as well as weaker yet significant entrainment to the unattended speech's envelope. An independent component analysis (ICA) decomposition of the data revealed sources in the posterior temporal cortices that displayed robust correlations to both the attended and unattended envelopes. Critically, in these components the signs of the correlations when attended were opposite those when unattended, consistent with the hypothesized entrainment-based suppressive mechanism. PMID:23515789

  14. Review of text-to-speech conversion for English.

    PubMed

    Klatt, D H

    1987-09-01

    The automatic conversion of English text to synthetic speech is presently being performed, remarkably well, by a number of laboratory systems and commercial devices. Progress in this area has been made possible by advances in linguistic theory, acoustic-phonetic characterization of English sound patterns, perceptual psychology, mathematical modeling of speech production, structured programming, and computer hardware design. This review traces the early work on the development of speech synthesizers, discovery of minimal acoustic cues for phonetic contrasts, evolution of phonemic rule programs, incorporation of prosodic rules, and formulation of techniques for text analysis. Examples of rules are used liberally to illustrate the state of the art. Many of the examples are taken from Klattalk, a text-to-speech system developed by the author. A number of scientific problems are identified that prevent current systems from achieving the goal of completely human-sounding speech. While the emphasis is on rule programs that drive a format synthesizer, alternatives such as articulatory synthesis and waveform concatenation are also reviewed. An extensive bibliography has been assembled to show both the breadth of synthesis activity and the wealth of phenomena covered by rules in the best of these programs. A recording of selected examples of the historical development of synthetic speech, enclosed as a 33 1/3-rpm record, is described in the Appendix. PMID:2958525

  15. Phase-locked responses to speech in human auditory cortex are enhanced during comprehension.

    PubMed

    Peelle, Jonathan E; Gross, Joachim; Davis, Matthew H

    2013-06-01

    A growing body of evidence shows that ongoing oscillations in auditory cortex modulate their phase to match the rhythm of temporally regular acoustic stimuli, increasing sensitivity to relevant environmental cues and improving detection accuracy. In the current study, we test the hypothesis that nonsensory information provided by linguistic content enhances phase-locked responses to intelligible speech in the human brain. Sixteen adults listened to meaningful sentences while we recorded neural activity using magnetoencephalography. Stimuli were processed using a noise-vocoding technique to vary intelligibility while keeping the temporal acoustic envelope consistent. We show that the acoustic envelopes of sentences contain most power between 4 and 7 Hz and that it is in this frequency band that phase locking between neural activity and envelopes is strongest. Bilateral oscillatory neural activity phase-locked to unintelligible speech, but this cerebro-acoustic phase locking was enhanced when speech was intelligible. This enhanced phase locking was left lateralized and localized to left temporal cortex. Together, our results demonstrate that entrainment to connected speech does not only depend on acoustic characteristics, but is also affected by listeners' ability to extract linguistic information. This suggests a biological framework for speech comprehension in which acoustic and linguistic cues reciprocally aid in stimulus prediction.

  16. My 65 years in acoustics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beranek, Leo L.

    2001-05-01

    My entry into acoustics began as research assistant to Professor F. V. Hunt at Harvard University. I received my doctorate in 1940 and directed the Electro-Acoustic Laboratory at Harvard from October 1940 until September 1945. In 1947, I became a tenured associate professor at MIT, and, with Richard H. Bolt, formed the consulting firm Bolt and Beranek, that later included Robert B. Newman, becoming BBN. My most significant contributions before 1970 were design of wedge-lined anechoic chambers, systemization of noise reduction in ventilation systems, design of the world's largest muffler for the testing of supersonic jet engines at NASA's Lewis Laboratory in Cleveland, speech interference level, NC noise criterion curves, heading New York Port Authority's noise study that resulted in mufflers on jet aircraft, and steep aircraft climb procedures, and publishing books titled, Acoustical Measurements, Acoustics, Noise Reduction, Noise and Vibration Control, and Music, Acoustics and Architecture. As President of BBN, I supervised the formation of the group that built and operated the ARPANET (1969), which, when split in two (using TCP/IP protocol) became the INTERNET (1984). Since then, I have written two books on Concert Halls and Opera Houses and have consulted on four concert halls and an opera house.

  17. A Novel Method for Speech Acquisition and Enhancement by 94 GHz Millimeter-Wave Sensor.

    PubMed

    Chen, Fuming; Li, Sheng; Li, Chuantao; Liu, Miao; Li, Zhao; Xue, Huijun; Jing, Xijing; Wang, Jianqi

    2015-12-31

    In order to improve the speech acquisition ability of a non-contact method, a 94 GHz millimeter wave (MMW) radar sensor was employed to detect speech signals. This novel non-contact speech acquisition method was shown to have high directional sensitivity, and to be immune to strong acoustical disturbance. However, MMW radar speech is often degraded by combined sources of noise, which mainly include harmonic, electrical circuit and channel noise. In this paper, an algorithm combining empirical mode decomposition (EMD) and mutual information entropy (MIE) was proposed for enhancing the perceptibility and intelligibility of radar speech. Firstly, the radar speech signal was adaptively decomposed into oscillatory components called intrinsic mode functions (IMFs) by EMD. Secondly, MIE was used to determine the number of reconstructive components, and then an adaptive threshold was employed to remove the noise from the radar speech. The experimental results show that human speech can be effectively acquired by a 94 GHz MMW radar sensor when the detection distance is 20 m. Moreover, the noise of the radar speech is greatly suppressed and the speech sounds become more pleasant to human listeners after being enhanced by the proposed algorithm, suggesting that this novel speech acquisition and enhancement method will provide a promising alternative for various applications associated with speech detection.

  18. A Novel Method for Speech Acquisition and Enhancement by 94 GHz Millimeter-Wave Sensor

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Fuming; Li, Sheng; Li, Chuantao; Liu, Miao; Li, Zhao; Xue, Huijun; Jing, Xijing; Wang, Jianqi

    2015-01-01

    In order to improve the speech acquisition ability of a non-contact method, a 94 GHz millimeter wave (MMW) radar sensor was employed to detect speech signals. This novel non-contact speech acquisition method was shown to have high directional sensitivity, and to be immune to strong acoustical disturbance. However, MMW radar speech is often degraded by combined sources of noise, which mainly include harmonic, electrical circuit and channel noise. In this paper, an algorithm combining empirical mode decomposition (EMD) and mutual information entropy (MIE) was proposed for enhancing the perceptibility and intelligibility of radar speech. Firstly, the radar speech signal was adaptively decomposed into oscillatory components called intrinsic mode functions (IMFs) by EMD. Secondly, MIE was used to determine the number of reconstructive components, and then an adaptive threshold was employed to remove the noise from the radar speech. The experimental results show that human speech can be effectively acquired by a 94 GHz MMW radar sensor when the detection distance is 20 m. Moreover, the noise of the radar speech is greatly suppressed and the speech sounds become more pleasant to human listeners after being enhanced by the proposed algorithm, suggesting that this novel speech acquisition and enhancement method will provide a promising alternative for various applications associated with speech detection. PMID:26729126

  19. Intelligibility and clarity of clear and conversational speech by children with implants and hearing aids

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carney, Arlene E.; Nie, Yingjiu; Main, Jennifer; Carney, Edward; Higgins, Maureen B.

    2005-09-01

    Studies of clear versus conversational speech have shown perceptual and acoustic differences. The basic premise is that the speaker understands the direction to speak more clearly, and translates the direction to speech motor acts. Children with hearing losses receive intervention during which they are instructed to use their best speech. The purpose of this study was to determine: (1) whether hearing-impaired children's intelligibility changed with directions to use better speech, and (2) whether these children's speech was judged to be clearer when they had intended to produce clear speech. There were two groups of speakers: 14 deaf children with cochlear implants and 7 hard-of-hearing children with hearing aids. Each produced ten short sentences using typical speech, better speech, and best speech. All sentences were presented to a total of 189 adult listeners with normal hearing who wrote down what they heard. Hard-of-hearing children had average speech intelligibility of 98% those with implants averaged 66%. Both groups had very small increases across conditions. All sentences in three speech conditions were presented in a paired-comparison task to ten additional listeners. Results of clarity judgments will be discussed in relation to the relatively small changes in speech intelligibility. [Research supported by NIH.

  20. Infant directed speech and the development of speech perception: enhancing development or an unintended consequence?

    PubMed

    McMurray, Bob; Kovack-Lesh, Kristine A; Goodwin, Dresden; McEchron, William

    2013-11-01

    Infant directed speech (IDS) is a speech register characterized by simpler sentences, a slower rate, and more variable prosody. Recent work has implicated it in more subtle aspects of language development. Kuhl et al. (1997) demonstrated that segmental cues for vowels are affected by IDS in a way that may enhance development: the average locations of the extreme "point" vowels (/a/, /i/ and /u/) are further apart in acoustic space. If infants learn speech categories, in part, from the statistical distributions of such cues, these changes may specifically enhance speech category learning. We revisited this by asking (1) if these findings extend to a new cue (Voice Onset Time, a cue for voicing); (2) whether they extend to the interior vowels which are much harder to learn and/or discriminate; and (3) whether these changes may be an unintended phonetic consequence of factors like speaking rate or prosodic changes associated with IDS. Eighteen caregivers were recorded reading a picture book including minimal pairs for voicing (e.g., beach/peach) and a variety of vowels to either an adult or their infant. Acoustic measurements suggested that VOT was different in IDS, but not in a way that necessarily supports better development, and that these changes are almost entirely due to slower rate of speech of IDS. Measurements of the vowel suggested that in addition to changes in the mean, there was also an increase in variance, and statistical modeling suggests that this may counteract the benefit of any expansion of the vowel space. As a whole this suggests that changes in segmental cues associated with IDS may be an unintended by-product of the slower rate of speech and different prosodic structure, and do not necessarily derive from a motivation to enhance development.