8th Annual Conference of the International Speech Communication Association

Antwerp, Belgium
August 27-31, 2007

The Effect of Filled Pauses in a Lecture Speech on Impressive Evaluation of Listeners

Hiromitsu Nishizaki, Mitsuhiro Sohmiya, Kenji Kobayashi, Yoshihiro Sekiguchi

University of Yamanashi, Japan

This paper examines and reports on how "filled pauses" included when delivering speeches influence the understanding, and change the impression, of the speech as shown through the research and experiments we conducted on trial subjects. We conducted research about speeches and lectures given at classes at our university, and at academic meetings. A questionnaire related to filled pauses was given to audiences in university classrooms, and the speeches given where recorded. Then, we prepared a number of speeches that were manually altered to put emphasis on the frequency, position, and duration of filled pauses in the speeches. Comparing those speeches with the original speeches which were not processed in our listening experiments, we were able to estimate the effect of filled pauses in a lecture speech and how effective these were in altering the impressions of the audiences. We were able to find the best conditions related to the frequency, position, and duration of filled pauses, and how these conditions clearly changed a lecture or speech into a better one which is easy to understanding and listen to for the audience.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Nishizaki, Hiromitsu / Sohmiya, Mitsuhiro / Kobayashi, Kenji / Sekiguchi, Yoshihiro (2007): "The effect of filled pauses in a lecture speech on impressive evaluation of listeners", In INTERSPEECH-2007, 2673-2676.