Comparison of Nasal Acceleration and Nasalance Across Vowels PurposeThe purpose of this study was to determine the performance of normalized nasal acceleration (NNA) relative to nasalance as estimates of nasalized versus nonnasalized vowel and sentence productions.MethodParticipants were 18 healthy speakers of American English. NNA was measured using a custom sensor, and nasalance was measured using the KayPentax Nasometer ... Article
Article  |   October 01, 2013
Comparison of Nasal Acceleration and Nasalance Across Vowels
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Elias B. Thorp
    Boston University
  • Boris T. Virnik
    Boston University
  • Cara E. Stepp
    Boston University
  • Correspondence to Cara E. Stepp: cstepp@bu.edu
  • Elias B. Thorp is now at Northwestern University, Evanston, IL.
    Elias B. Thorp is now at Northwestern University, Evanston, IL.×
  • Editor: Jody Kreiman
    Editor: Jody Kreiman×
  • Associate Editor: Kate Bunton
    Associate Editor: Kate Bunton×
Article Information
Speech, Voice & Prosody / Speech
Article   |   October 01, 2013
Comparison of Nasal Acceleration and Nasalance Across Vowels
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, October 2013, Vol. 56, 1476-1484. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2013/12-0239)
History: Received July 30, 2012 , Revised September 27, 2012 , Accepted January 18, 2013
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, October 2013, Vol. 56, 1476-1484. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2013/12-0239)
History: Received July 30, 2012; Revised September 27, 2012; Accepted January 18, 2013
Web of Science® Times Cited: 4

PurposeThe purpose of this study was to determine the performance of normalized nasal acceleration (NNA) relative to nasalance as estimates of nasalized versus nonnasalized vowel and sentence productions.

MethodParticipants were 18 healthy speakers of American English. NNA was measured using a custom sensor, and nasalance was measured using the KayPentax Nasometer II. Speech stimuli consisted of CVC syllables with the vowels (/ɑ/, /æ/, /i/, /u/) and sentences loaded with high front, high back, low front, and low back vowels in both nasal and nonnasal contexts.

ResultsNNA showed a small but significant effect of the vowel produced during syllable stimuli but no significant effect of vowel loading during sentence stimuli. Nasalance was significantly affected by the vowel being produced during both syllables and sentences with large effect sizes. Both NNA and nasalance were highly sensitive and specific to nasalization.

ConclusionsNNA was less affected by vowel than nasalance. Discrimination of nasal versus nonnasal stimuli using NNA and nasalance was comparable, suggesting potential for use of NNA for biofeedback applications. Future work to improve calibration of NNA is needed to lower intersubject variability.

Acknowledgments
We thank Maia Braden, MS, CCC-SLP, of the University of Wisconsin for her help in auditory–perceptual screening of participants and Emma Billard of Boston University for her helpful comments.
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