ISCA Archive SpeechProsody 2022
ISCA Archive SpeechProsody 2022

Effect of Age and Gender on Categorical Vocal Emotion Recognition in Mandarin Chinese

Yu Chen, Ting Wang, Hongwei Ding

Categorical perception (CP) effect, as a fundamental feature of perception which allows humans to rapidly and properly respond to sensory cues, has received accumulating evidences from various perceptual experiments, such as musical tone perception and facial emotion identification. The current study attempted to detect the potential CP effect of vocal emotion expression in Mandarin Chinese and further explored the effect of age and gender on emotional prosody categorization. Three emotional prosody continua (happiness-sadness, neutral-happiness, neutral-sadness) were created using speech synthesis. Each continuum consists of 11 emotional speeches with equal-sized physical differences. Two groups of subjects (children and adults) were instructed to finish both the identification tasks and discrimination tasks. Results indicated that adults showed significantly narrower boundary width compared to younger children, and women’s boundary width was also significantly narrower than men’s. Moreover, the emotion categories of children group did not coincide with those of adults. These findings provide novel evidence for categorical emotion recognition from voice and also illuminate the effect of age and gender on prosodic perception of emotional speech. Particularly, the current research indicates that children’s capacity to decode emotions follows a slow course of development before changing into adults’ emotional category pattern.


doi: 10.21437/SpeechProsody.2022-118

Cite as: Chen, Y., Wang, T., Ding, H. (2022) Effect of Age and Gender on Categorical Vocal Emotion Recognition in Mandarin Chinese. Proc. Speech Prosody 2022, 580-584, doi: 10.21437/SpeechProsody.2022-118

@inproceedings{chen22_speechprosody,
  author={Yu Chen and Ting Wang and Hongwei Ding},
  title={{Effect of Age and Gender on Categorical Vocal Emotion Recognition in Mandarin Chinese}},
  year=2022,
  booktitle={Proc. Speech Prosody 2022},
  pages={580--584},
  doi={10.21437/SpeechProsody.2022-118}
}