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Special Interest Group 19 - Speech Science

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Perception, Technology, and Clinical Applications
Format(s): SIG Perspectives and Exam
These Perspectives (SIG 19) articles focus on perceptual considerations and the use of a system to investigate lingual coordination as a clinical tool. In the first article Rakerd et al. review the resonant effects of performers, resonance associated with nasality, and resonant voice for both normal and disordered populations. In the second article Grover et al. use the bubble noise method, which places noise randomly in time and frequency with “holes” or “bubbles” that give glimpses into the target signal, to determine what is perceptually important in the speech signal for native/first language listeners versus nonnative/second language listeners. In the final article, Dugan et al. review TonguePART, an image processing system used to track the tongue surface, as a reliable, fast method to track articulatory movement of the tongue for syllables
Use of Technology to Assess  Speech Production and Voice
Format(s): SIG Perspectives and Exam
These Perspectives (SIG 19) articles provide with information relevant to speech science research and education. Lulich and Pearson present two demonstrations in this technical report to illustrate the utility of 3D/4D ultrasound technology. First, the authors report that “not only can structures be imaged which previously were impossible to identify from 2D ultrasound alone (e.g., piriform sinuses and posterior pharyngeal wall), but questions involving non-sagittal structures and asymmetrical tongue shapes, such as the pervasiveness and extensiveness of lateral contact between the tongue and the palate-teeth, can now be addressed non-invasively.” Second, they also conclude that “the fusion of ultrasound data with MRI images further enhances the utility of 3D/4D ultrasound, since it combines the strengths of ultrasound with the complementary strengths of the other modality, while mitigating the weaknesses of each.” Richardson et al., compare various acoustical measures of sustained vowels obtained using the Multidimensional Voice Program (MDVP) by Computerized Speech Lab, Praat, and TF32. Results show that the MDVP yield significantly higher values of standard deviation of fundamental frequency, jitter, and shimmer, and significantly lower values of noise-to-harmonics ratio compared to the other programs. They discuss the variation of numerical values across programs and the resulting clinical implications. Hagedorn et al. discuss the benefits of a collaboration among engineers, speech scientists, and clinicians which yield “the development of biologically inspired technology that has been proven useful for both small- and large-scale analysis,” a better understanding of speech production, and the development of assessment tools with a clinical benefit and interdisciplinary reach. They also review the use of real-time magnetic resonance imaging across clinical populations and discuss the challenges associated with collaborative work. Lee and Fischer reveal an association between acoustic vowel space and the severity of dysarthria. They review sex differences, factors that may affect formant-related measures, and clinical implications.
Perspectives, SIG 19, Vol. 3, Part 1, 2018
Format(s): SIG Perspectives and Exam
The article provided affiliates with novel information relevant to speech science, specifically room acoustics. In both practicing audiology and speech language pathology, as well as in speech and hearing science research, the space where the work is done is an integral part of the function. Hence, for all of these endeavors it can be important to measure the acoustics of a room. This article provided a tutorial regarding the measurement of room reverberation and background noise, both of which are important when evaluating a space’s strengths and limitations for speech communication. As the privacy of patients and research participants is a primary concern, the tutorial also describes a method for measuring the amount of acoustical insulation provided by a room’s barriers (walls, windows, and doors). Several room measurement data sets—all obtained from the assessment of clinical and research spaces within the authors’ department—are presented as examples in the article.

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