11th Annual Conference of the International Speech Communication Association

Makuhari, Chiba, Japan
September 26-30. 2010

Towards an ASR-Free Objective Analysis of Pathological Speech

Catherine Middag, Yvan Saeys, Jean-Pierre Martens

Universiteit Gent, Belgium

Nowadays, intelligibility is a popular measure of the severity of the articulatory deficiencies of a pathological speaker. Usually, this measure is obtained by means of a perceptual test, consisting of nonconventional and/or nonconnected words. In previous work, we developed a system incorporating two Automatic Speech Recognizers (ASR) that could fairly accurately estimate phoneme intelligibility (PI). In the present paper, we propose a novel method that aims to assess the running speech intelligibility (RSI) as a more relevant indicator of the communication efficiency of a speaker in a natural setting. The proposed method computes a phonological characterization of the speaker by means of a statistical analysis of frame-level phonological features. Important is that this analysis requires no knowledge of what the speaker was supposed to say. The new characterization is demonstrated to predict PI and to provide valuable information about the nature and severity of the pathology.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Middag, Catherine / Saeys, Yvan / Martens, Jean-Pierre (2010): "Towards an ASR-free objective analysis of pathological speech", In INTERSPEECH-2010, 294-297.