The Effect of Listener Experience and Anchors on Judgments of Dysphonia PurposeTo determine the effect of auditory anchors on judgments of overall severity (OS) and vocal effort (VE) in dysphonic speech when judgments are made by experienced and inexperienced listeners, and when self-rated by individuals with dysphonia (speaker–listeners).MethodTwenty individuals with dysphonia and 4 normal controls provided speech recordings. Speaker–listeners judged their ... Article
Article  |   April 01, 2011
The Effect of Listener Experience and Anchors on Judgments of Dysphonia
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Tanya L. Eadie
    University of Washington, Seattle
    University of Washington, Seattle
  • Mara Kapsner-Smith
    University of Washington, Seattle
    University of Washington, Seattle
  • Correspondence to Tanya L. Eadie: teadie@uw.edu
  • Editor: Anne Smith
    Editor: Anne Smith×
  • Associate Editor: Robert Hillman
    Associate Editor: Robert Hillman×
Article Information
Speech, Voice & Prosodic Disorders / Voice Disorders / Speech
Article   |   April 01, 2011
The Effect of Listener Experience and Anchors on Judgments of Dysphonia
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, April 2011, Vol. 54, 430-447. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2010/09-0205)
History: Received September 19, 2009 , Revised April 21, 2010 , Accepted August 30, 2010
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, April 2011, Vol. 54, 430-447. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2010/09-0205)
History: Received September 19, 2009; Revised April 21, 2010; Accepted August 30, 2010
Web of Science® Times Cited: 21

PurposeTo determine the effect of auditory anchors on judgments of overall severity (OS) and vocal effort (VE) in dysphonic speech when judgments are made by experienced and inexperienced listeners, and when self-rated by individuals with dysphonia (speaker–listeners).

MethodTwenty individuals with dysphonia and 4 normal controls provided speech recordings. Speaker–listeners judged their own speech samples for OS and VE without auditory anchors, and then in the presence of anchors, using 100-mm visual analog scales (VAS). Twenty inexperienced and 10 experienced listeners evaluated the same speech samples for OS and VE in similar rating conditions. Twenty inexperienced listeners also made judgments of the speech samples solely in anchored conditions.

ResultsAll listeners judged the speech samples as significantly less severe and effortful in the anchored conditions. No significant effects of anchors or experience were found for intrarater agreement within 7.14 mm on the VAS. Both inexperienced and experienced listeners were significantly less variable and showed improved interrater agreement in the anchored conditions. Anchors significantly improved agreement across groups of listeners, particularly between inexperienced and speaker–listeners.

ConclusionListeners systematically shift judgments of voice quality in response to auditory anchors. Anchors reduce interrater variability and may improve agreement across some types of listeners.

Acknowledgments
We wish to acknowledge funding support of the Royalty Research Fund at the University of Washington. Portions of this article were presented at the Annual Convention of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, November 2008, Chicago, IL. This work is based on a thesis by Mara Kapsner-Smith, submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the Master of Science degree from the Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences, University of Washington. We acknowledge the valuable insight provided by Kristie Spencer and Martin Nevdahl throughout this project. Finally, we thank all of the participants in this study, student researchers—particularly Kathy Nagle—in the Vocal Function Laboratory who helped with data collection, and Andrew Smith, who programmed the perceptual software.
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