Effect of Fingerspelling Task on Temporal Characteristics and Perceived Naturalness of Speech in Simultaneous Communication This study investigated the effect of fingerspelling task length on temporal characteristics and perceived naturalness of speech produced during simultaneous communication. Stimulus words at four levels of fingerspelling task length were embedded in a sentence that was spoken and produced with simultaneous communication. Five temporal measures were calculated from acoustic ... Research Article
Research Article  |   February 01, 1998
Effect of Fingerspelling Task on Temporal Characteristics and Perceived Naturalness of Speech in Simultaneous Communication
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Nicholas Schiavetti
    State University of New York Geneseo
  • Robert L. Whitehead
    National Technical Institute for the Deaf Rochester, NY
  • Brenda Whitehead
    National Technical Institute for the Deaf Rochester, NY
  • Dale Evan Metz
    State University of New York Geneseo
  • Contact author: Nicholas Schiavetti, PhD, Dept. of Communicative Disorders, SUNY at Geneseo, 1 College Circle, Geneseo, NY 14454
Article Information
Hearing & Speech Perception / Acoustics / Hearing Disorders / Speech, Voice & Prosody / Speech / Research Articles
Research Article   |   February 01, 1998
Effect of Fingerspelling Task on Temporal Characteristics and Perceived Naturalness of Speech in Simultaneous Communication
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, February 1998, Vol. 41, 5-17. doi:10.1044/jslhr.4101.05
History: Received January 21, 1997 , Accepted June 12, 1997
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, February 1998, Vol. 41, 5-17. doi:10.1044/jslhr.4101.05
History: Received January 21, 1997; Accepted June 12, 1997

This study investigated the effect of fingerspelling task length on temporal characteristics and perceived naturalness of speech produced during simultaneous communication. Stimulus words at four levels of fingerspelling task length were embedded in a sentence that was spoken and produced with simultaneous communication. Five temporal measures were calculated from acoustic recordings, and perceived speech naturalness was rated by a panel of listeners using a 9-point scale. Results indicated significant differences in temporal measures and naturalness ratings between the speech and simultaneous communication conditions and among levels of fingerspelling task length. Speech produced during simultaneous communication was rated as less natural and demonstrated increased interword interval, diphthong, word, and sentence durations. Regression analysis indicated significant correlations between temporal measures and perceived speech naturalness, and analysis of variance showed significant increases in segmental and interword interval durations and perceived speech unnaturalness as fingerspelling task length increased. These results are discussed in relation to previous findings regarding production and perception characteristics of speech that is altered in temporal parameters by a variety of conditions.

Acknowledgment
A portion of this research was conducted at the National Technical Institute for the Deaf in the course of an agreement between the Rochester Institute of Technology and the U.S. Department of Education. Part of this research was supported by funds from the Geneseo Foundation, provided through the Research Council. The authors thank Thomas Farrell and Amy Braverman for their assistance with the data analysis.
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