Effects of Repeated Listening Experiences on the Recognition of Synthetic Speech by Individuals With Severe Intellectual Disabilities Purpose To examine the perception of synthetic speech by individuals with severe intellectual disabilities using a closed-response format task. Method Participants were 14 individuals with severe intellectual disabilities and a group of 14 typical individuals. A between-groups design was used to compare the performance of the 2 groups ... Research Article
Research Article  |   February 01, 2006
Effects of Repeated Listening Experiences on the Recognition of Synthetic Speech by Individuals With Severe Intellectual Disabilities
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Rajinder Koul
    Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, Lubbock
  • Kasey Hester
    Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, Lubbock
  • Contact author: Rajinder Koul, Department of Speech-Language and Hearing Sciences, Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, 3601 4th Street, Lubbock, TX 79430. Email: Rajinder.Koul@ttuhsc.edu
Article Information
Augmentative & Alternative Communication / Language / Research Articles
Research Article   |   February 01, 2006
Effects of Repeated Listening Experiences on the Recognition of Synthetic Speech by Individuals With Severe Intellectual Disabilities
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, February 2006, Vol. 49, 47-57. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2006/004)
History: Received February 19, 2004 , Revised July 9, 2004 , Accepted May 17, 2005
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, February 2006, Vol. 49, 47-57. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2006/004)
History: Received February 19, 2004; Revised July 9, 2004; Accepted May 17, 2005

Purpose To examine the perception of synthetic speech by individuals with severe intellectual disabilities using a closed-response format task.

Method Participants were 14 individuals with severe intellectual disabilities and a group of 14 typical individuals. A between-groups design was used to compare the performance of the 2 groups on word identification accuracy and word latency tasks. Data were analyzed using a repeated measures design.

Results The results indicated that the performance of a group of individuals with severe intellectual disabilities was significantly poorer (p < .05) than that of typical individuals on the word identification task. Data analyzed for practice effects indicated that individuals with severe intellectual disabilities demonstrated a significant reduction (p < .01) in their word latency scores across sessions. Furthermore, there was an absence of significant effect (p > .01) of stimulus type (i.e., repeated vs. novel), indicating that individuals with intellectual disabilities are able to generalize their knowledge of the acoustic–phonetic properties of synthetic speech to novel stimuli.

Conclusions This study indicates that persons with severe intellectual impairments become more proficient at recognizing synthetic speech as a result of repeated exposure to it. These results have significant clinical implications for people who use speech-generating devices.

Acknowledgments
The research reported in this article was supported by a research fellowship grant (84 133F) from the U.S. Department of Education. We are most grateful for the valuable support and assistance provided by Monica Gurule and to the participants who took part in this study.
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