ISCA International Workshop on Speech and Language Technology in Education (SLaTE 2011)
We investigate the effectiveness of using an accepted readability
index, the Flesch Reading Ease (FRE) scale, to design
prompts for an automatic oral proficiency assessment system.
The prompts in question are uttered by the system, and must be
repeated from memory by the test subjects, in the form of an
elicited imitation exercise. The FRE scores for our prompts are
shown to correlate well with the repeat accuracy ratings given
to the same prompts by human judges. The prompts are also
shown to perform well in the automatic assessment of oral proficiency
by means of the elicited imitation tasks with more than
one group of university students. We therefore conclude that
a readability index, such as the FRE, can be used as a design
criterion for prompts in an automated elicited imitation test.
Index Terms. elicited imitation task, readability index, Flesch Reading Ease scale, automatic oral proficiency assessment
Bibliographic reference. Wet, Febe de / Müller, Pieter / Walt, Christa van der / Niesler, Thomas (2011): "Readability index as a design criterion for elicited imitation tasks in automatic oral proficiency assessment", In SLaTE-2011, 105-108.