Individual Differences in Voice Quality Perception Sixteen listeners (10 expert, 6 naive) judged the dissimilarity of pairs of voices drawn from pathological and normal populations. Separate nonmetric multidimensional scaling solutions were calculated for each listener and voice set. The correlations between individual listeners’ dissimilarity ratings were low However, scaling solutions indicated that each subject judged the ... Research Article
Research Article  |   June 01, 1992
Individual Differences in Voice Quality Perception
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Jody Kreiman
    VA Medical Center, West Los Angeles and Division of Head and Neck Surgery UCLA School of Medicine
  • Bruce R. Gerratt
    VA Medical Center, West Los Angeles and Division of Head and Neck Surgery UCLA School of Medicine
  • Kristin Precoda
    VA Medical Center, West Los Angeles and Division of Head and Neck Surgery UCLA School of Medicine
  • Gerald S. Berke
    VA Medical Center, West Los Angeles and Division of Head and Neck Surgery UCLA School of Medicine
Article Information
Speech / Research Articles
Research Article   |   June 01, 1992
Individual Differences in Voice Quality Perception
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 1992, Vol. 35, 512-520. doi:10.1044/jshr.3503.512
History: Received January 7, 1991 , Accepted July 18, 1991
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 1992, Vol. 35, 512-520. doi:10.1044/jshr.3503.512
History: Received January 7, 1991; Accepted July 18, 1991

Sixteen listeners (10 expert, 6 naive) judged the dissimilarity of pairs of voices drawn from pathological and normal populations. Separate nonmetric multidimensional scaling solutions were calculated for each listener and voice set. The correlations between individual listeners’ dissimilarity ratings were low However, scaling solutions indicated that each subject judged the voices in a reliable, meaningful way. Listeners differed more from one another in their judgments of the pathological voices (which varied widely on a number of acoustic parameters) than they did for the normal voices (which formed a much more homogeneous set acoustically). The acoustic features listeners used to judge dissimilarity were predictable from the characteristics of the stimulus sets’ only parameters that showed substantial variability were perceptually salient across listeners. These results are consistent with prototype models of voice perception They suggest that traditional means of assessing listener reliability n voice perception tasks may not be appropriate, and highlight the importance of using explicit comparisons between stimuli when studying voice quality perception

Acknowledgments
We thank Andrew Erman, Patty Gomeztrejo, David Hanson, Jean Holle, Daniel Kempler, Linda Mackey, Cynthia Moreno, and Jill Zweier for serving as expert listeners. We also thank Andrew Erman (again!) and Justin Woo for their help with data analysis. Gail Kempster, Alan Reich, and an anonymous reviewer provided many helpful comments on an earlier version of this paper. This research was supported by NIDCD award NS20707, by a NIDCD postdoctoral traineeship to the first author (NS07059), and by Veterans’ Administration Rehabilitation Research and Development funds.
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