Direct Magnitude Estimates of Speech Intelligibility in Dysarthria Effects of a Chosen Standard Research Article
Research Article  |   June 2002
Direct Magnitude Estimates of Speech Intelligibility in Dysarthria
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Gary Weismer, PhD
    Department of Communicative Disorders and Waisman Center University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • Jacqueline S. Laures
    Program in Communication Disorders Georgia State University Atlanta
  • Contact author: Gary Weismer, PhD, Department of Communicative Disorders, University of Wisconsin–Madison, 1975 Willow Drive, Madison, WI 53706. E-mail: weismer@waisman.wisc.edu
Article Information
Speech, Voice & Prosodic Disorders / Dysarthria / Speech / Research Articles
Research Article   |   June 2002
Direct Magnitude Estimates of Speech Intelligibility in Dysarthria
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 2002, Vol. 45, 421-433. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2002/033)
History: Received June 26, 2001 , Accepted January 3, 2002
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 2002, Vol. 45, 421-433. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2002/033)
History: Received June 26, 2001; Accepted January 3, 2002

Direct magnitude estimation (DME) has been used frequently as a perceptual scaling technique in studies of the speech intelligibility of persons with speech disorders. The technique is typically used with a standard, or reference stimulus, chosen as a good exemplar of "midrange" intelligibility. In several published studies, the standard has been chosen subjectively, usually on the basis of the expertise of the investigators. The current experiment demonstrates that a fixed set of sentence-level utterances, obtained from 4 individuals with dysarthria (2 with Parkinson disease, 2 with traumatic brain injury) as well as 3 neurologically normal speakers, is scaled differently depending on the identity of the standard. Four different standards were used in the main experiment, three of which were judged qualitatively in two independent evaluations to be good exemplars of midrange intelligibility. Acoustic analyses did not reveal obvious differences between these four standards but suggested that the standard with the worst-scaled intelligibility had much poorer voice source characteristics compared to the other three standards. Results are discussed in terms of possible standardization of midrange intelligibility exemplars for DME experiments.

Acknowledgment
The research reported here was supported in part by NIDCD awards DC00319 and DC01409.
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