Acoustic and Articulatory Features of Diphthong Production: A Speech Clarity Study PurposeThe purpose of this study was to evaluate how speaking clearly influences selected acoustic and orofacial kinematic measures associated with diphthong production.MethodForty-nine speakers, drawn from the University of Wisconsin X-Ray Microbeam Speech Production Database (J. R. Westbury, 1994), served as participants. Samples of clear and conversational productions of the word ... Article
Article  |   February 01, 2010
Acoustic and Articulatory Features of Diphthong Production: A Speech Clarity Study
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Stephen M. Tasko
    Western Michigan University
  • Kristin Greilick
    Sydney, Australia
  • Contact author: Stephen M. Tasko, Department of Speech Pathology and Audiology, Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, MI 49008. E-mail: Stephen.tasko@wmich.edu.
Article Information
Hearing & Speech Perception / Acoustics / Normal Language Processing / Speech, Voice & Prosody / Speech
Article   |   February 01, 2010
Acoustic and Articulatory Features of Diphthong Production: A Speech Clarity Study
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, February 2010, Vol. 53, 84-99. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2009/08-0124)
History: Received June 15, 2008 , Accepted July 1, 2009
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, February 2010, Vol. 53, 84-99. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2009/08-0124)
History: Received June 15, 2008; Accepted July 1, 2009
Web of Science® Times Cited: 20

PurposeThe purpose of this study was to evaluate how speaking clearly influences selected acoustic and orofacial kinematic measures associated with diphthong production.

MethodForty-nine speakers, drawn from the University of Wisconsin X-Ray Microbeam Speech Production Database (J. R. Westbury, 1994), served as participants. Samples of clear and conversational productions of the word combine were extracted for analysis. Analyses included listener ratings of speech clarity and a number of acoustic and articulatory kinematic measures associated with production of the diphthong /aI/.

ResultsKey results indicate that speaking clearly is associated with (a) increased duration of diphthong-related acoustic and kinematic events, (b) larger F1 and F2 excursions and associated tongue and mandible movements, and (c) minimal evidence of change in formant transition rate.

ConclusionsOverall, the results suggest that clarity-related changes in diphthong production are accomplished through larger, longer, but not necessarily faster diphthong-related transitions. The clarity-related adjustments in diphthong production observed in this study conform to a simple model that assumes speech clarity arises out of reduced overlap of articulatory gestures.

Acknowledgments
Portions of this work were part of a master’s thesis completed by the second author at Western Michigan University. Some of these results were presented at the 2004 American Speech-Language-Hearing Association Convention in Philadelphia, PA.
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