Synthesized Speech Output and Children: A Scoping Review Purpose Many computer-based augmentative and alternative communication systems in use by children have speech output. This article (a) provides a scoping review of the literature addressing the intelligibility and listener comprehension of synthesized speech output with children and (b) discusses future research directions. Method Studies investigating synthesized speech ... Research Article
Research Article  |   August 01, 2010
Synthesized Speech Output and Children: A Scoping Review
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Kathryn D. R. Drager
    The Pennsylvania State University, University Park
  • Joe Reichle
    University of Minnesota, Minneapolis
  • Carrie Pinkoski
    University of Minnesota, Minneapolis
  • Contact author: Kathryn Drager, Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders, 308G Ford Building, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA 16802. E-mail: kdd5@psu.edu.
Article Information
Speech, Voice & Prosodic Disorders / Augmentative & Alternative Communication / Research Articles
Research Article   |   August 01, 2010
Synthesized Speech Output and Children: A Scoping Review
American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, August 2010, Vol. 19, 259-273. doi:10.1044/1058-0360(2010/09-0024)
History: Received March 26, 2009 , Revised November 16, 2009 , Accepted May 18, 2010
 
American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, August 2010, Vol. 19, 259-273. doi:10.1044/1058-0360(2010/09-0024)
History: Received March 26, 2009; Revised November 16, 2009; Accepted May 18, 2010
Web of Science® Times Cited: 6

Purpose Many computer-based augmentative and alternative communication systems in use by children have speech output. This article (a) provides a scoping review of the literature addressing the intelligibility and listener comprehension of synthesized speech output with children and (b) discusses future research directions.

Method Studies investigating synthesized speech intelligibility and/or comprehension with children as listeners were systematically identified and coded according to their objectives and methodology.

Results Ten studies were identified. They were organized according to the following variables: intelligibility variables related to the stimuli (context and rate), intelligibility variables related to aspects of the listener (age of the child, the language or languages spoken by the listener, experience, and practice effects), and comprehension. Each of these factors—and the research support with child participants—was discussed.

Conclusions Overall, there is a paucity of research investigating synthesized speech for use with children. Available evidence suggests that children produce similar trends but lower levels of intelligibility performance when compared with adults. Future areas of applied research are required to adequately define this relationship and the variables that may contribute to improving the intelligibility and comprehension of synthesized speech for children.

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