Recognition of Echolalic Autistic Child Vocalisations Utilising Convolutional Recurrent Neural Networks

Shahin Amiriparian, Alice Baird, Sahib Julka, Alyssa Alcorn, Sandra Ottl, Sunčica Petrović, Eloise Ainger, Nicholas Cummins, Björn Schuller


Autism spectrum conditions (ASC) are a set of neuro-developmental conditions partly characterised by difficulties with communication. Individuals with ASC can show a variety of atypical speech behaviours, including echolalia or the `echoing' of another's speech. We herein introduce a new dataset of 15 Serbian ASC children in a human-robot interaction scenario, annotated for the presence of echolalia amongst other ASC vocal behaviours. From this, we propose a four-class classification problem and investigate the suitability of applying a 2D convolutional neural network augmented with a recurrent neural network with bidirectional long short-term memory cells to solve the proposed task of echolalia recognition. In this approach, log Mel-spectrograms are first generated from the audio recordings and then fed as input into the convolutional layers to extract high-level spectral features. The subsequent recurrent layers are applied to learn the long-term temporal context from the obtained features. Finally, we use a feed forward neural network with softmax activation to classify the dataset. To evaluate the performance of our deep learning approach, we use leave-one-subject-out cross-validation. Key results presented indicate the suitability of our approach by achieving a classification accuracy of 83.5% unweighted average recall.


 DOI: 10.21437/Interspeech.2018-1772

Cite as: Amiriparian, S., Baird, A., Julka, S., Alcorn, A., Ottl, S., Petrović, S., Ainger, E., Cummins, N., Schuller, B. (2018) Recognition of Echolalic Autistic Child Vocalisations Utilising Convolutional Recurrent Neural Networks. Proc. Interspeech 2018, 2334-2338, DOI: 10.21437/Interspeech.2018-1772.


@inproceedings{Amiriparian2018,
  author={Shahin Amiriparian and Alice Baird and Sahib Julka and Alyssa Alcorn and Sandra Ottl and Sunčica Petrović and Eloise Ainger and Nicholas Cummins and Björn Schuller},
  title={Recognition of Echolalic Autistic Child Vocalisations Utilising Convolutional Recurrent Neural Networks},
  year=2018,
  booktitle={Proc. Interspeech 2018},
  pages={2334--2338},
  doi={10.21437/Interspeech.2018-1772},
  url={http://dx.doi.org/10.21437/Interspeech.2018-1772}
}