Eliciting extra prominence in read-speech tasks: The effects of different text-highlighting methods on acoustic cues to perceived prominence

Stephanie Berger, Oliver Niebuhr, Kerstin Fischer


The research initiative Innovating Speech EliCitation Tech-niques (INSPECT) aims to describe and quantify how recording methods, situations, and materials influence speech production in lab-speech experiments. On this basis, INSPECT aims to develop methods that reliably stimulate specific patterns and styles of speech, like expressive or conversational speech or different types emphatic accents. The present study investigates if and how different text highlighting methods (yellow background, bold, capital letters, italics, and underlining) make speakers reinforce the level of perceived prominence of pitch-accented target words in German. Analyzed prominence parameters were F0 level, F0 range, normalized intensity level, and word duration. Results show that text highlighting in fact caused prominence parameters to increase. Based on the prominence sensitivity of the affected parameters and the magnitude of their increase, the tested highlighting strategies form the following order of (descending) effectiveness: (i) italics, (ii) yellow, (iii) bold, (iv) capital letters, and (v) underlining.


 DOI: 10.21437/SpeechProsody.2018-15

Cite as: Berger, S., Niebuhr, O., Fischer, K. (2018) Eliciting extra prominence in read-speech tasks: The effects of different text-highlighting methods on acoustic cues to perceived prominence. Proc. 9th International Conference on Speech Prosody 2018, 75-79, DOI: 10.21437/SpeechProsody.2018-15.


@inproceedings{Berger2018,
  author={Stephanie Berger and Oliver Niebuhr and Kerstin Fischer},
  title={Eliciting extra prominence in read-speech tasks: The effects of different text-highlighting methods on acoustic cues to perceived prominence},
  year=2018,
  booktitle={Proc. 9th International Conference on Speech Prosody 2018},
  pages={75--79},
  doi={10.21437/SpeechProsody.2018-15},
  url={http://dx.doi.org/10.21437/SpeechProsody.2018-15}
}