Acoustic-prosodic Entrainment in Structural Metadata Events

Vera Cabarrão, Fernando Batista, Helena Moniz, Isabel Trancoso, Ana Isabel Mata


This paper presents an acoustic-prosodic analysis of entrainment in a Portuguese map-task corpus. Our aim is to analyze how turn-by-turn entrainment varies with distinct structural metadata events: types of sentence-like units (SU) in consecutive turns (e.g. interrogatives followed by declaratives, or both declaratives) and with the presence of discourse markers, affirmative cue words and disfluencies in the beginning of turns. Entrainment at turn-exchanges may be observed in terms of pitch, energy, duration and voice quality. Regarding SU types, question-answer turns are the ones with stronger similarity and declarative-interrogative pairs are the ones where less entrainment occurs, as expected. Moreover, in question-answer pairs, there is also stronger evidence of entrainment with Yes/No and Tag questions than with Wh-questions. In fact, these subtypes are coded in distinctive prosodic ways (moreover, the first subtype has no associated lexical-syntactic cues in Portuguese, only prosodic). As for turn-initial structures, entrainment is stronger when the second turn begins with an affirmative cue word; less strong with ambiguous structures (such as ‘OK’), emphatic affirmative answers and negative answers; and scarce with disfluencies and discourse markers. The different degrees of local entrainment may be related with the informative structure of distinct structural metadata events.


 DOI: 10.21437/Interspeech.2018-2366

Cite as: Cabarrão, V., Batista, F., Moniz, H., Trancoso, I., Mata, A.I. (2018) Acoustic-prosodic Entrainment in Structural Metadata Events. Proc. Interspeech 2018, 2176-2180, DOI: 10.21437/Interspeech.2018-2366.


@inproceedings{Cabarrão2018,
  author={Vera Cabarrão and Fernando Batista and Helena Moniz and Isabel Trancoso and Ana Isabel Mata},
  title={Acoustic-prosodic Entrainment in Structural Metadata Events},
  year=2018,
  booktitle={Proc. Interspeech 2018},
  pages={2176--2180},
  doi={10.21437/Interspeech.2018-2366},
  url={http://dx.doi.org/10.21437/Interspeech.2018-2366}
}