Communication Systems for the Nonvocal Based on Frequent Phoneme Sequences A new type of nonvocal communication system has been developed for people unable to produce speech because of neuromotor impairment. It is designed to be as flexible as the alphabet, while requiring significantly fewer acts of selection on the part of the user. The items in this type of system ... Research Article
Research Article  |   September 01, 1981
Communication Systems for the Nonvocal Based on Frequent Phoneme Sequences
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Cheryl Goodenough-Trepagnier
    Tufts-New England Medical Center, Boston
  • Penny Prather
    Tufts-New England Medical Center, Boston
Article Information
Research Articles
Research Article   |   September 01, 1981
Communication Systems for the Nonvocal Based on Frequent Phoneme Sequences
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, September 1981, Vol. 24, 322-329. doi:10.1044/jshr.2403.322
History: Received August 8, 1979 , Accepted April 24, 1980
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, September 1981, Vol. 24, 322-329. doi:10.1044/jshr.2403.322
History: Received August 8, 1979; Accepted April 24, 1980

A new type of nonvocal communication system has been developed for people unable to produce speech because of neuromotor impairment. It is designed to be as flexible as the alphabet, while requiring significantly fewer acts of selection on the part of the user. The items in this type of system are phoneme sequences which have a high frequency of occurrence in the spoken language, along with the full set of single phonemes, represented in a simplified, consistent orthography. The more phoneme sequences included, the fewer the selection gestures required.

A system of this type—Par lē si la b— is available for French, and one for English—SPEEC (Sequences of Phonemes for Efficient English Communication)—is being field-tested. Both systems are implemented in lapboard form and on encoded eye-gaze selection (Etran) charts (Eichler, 1975) and are potentially compatible with a variety of electronic communication devices.

To the nonvocal individual with good comprehension and the ability to begin learning regular sound-letter correspondences, this approach offers an unrestricted and potentially more rapid communication mode that may allow greater opportunity to develop and exercise language than is currently afforded by the alphabet or by preselected-vocabulary systems.

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