An Exploration of Listener Variability in Intelligibility Judgments Purpose This study was designed to assess potential contributors to listener variability in judgments of intelligibility. Method A total of 228 unfamiliar everyday listeners judged speech samples from 3 individuals with dysarthria. Samples were the single-word phonetic contrast test, the Sentence Intelligibility Test, an unpredictable sentence intelligibility test, ... Research Article
Research Article  |   May 01, 2011
An Exploration of Listener Variability in Intelligibility Judgments
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Monica McHenry
    University of Houston, Houston, TX
  • Correspondence to Monica McHenry: mmchenry@uh.edu
  • Editor: Laura Justice
    Editor: Laura Justice×
  • Associate Editor: Jessica Huber
    Associate Editor: Jessica Huber×
Article Information
Speech, Voice & Prosodic Disorders / Research Articles
Research Article   |   May 01, 2011
An Exploration of Listener Variability in Intelligibility Judgments
American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, May 2011, Vol. 20, 119-123. doi:10.1044/1058-0360(2010/10-0059)
History: Received June 28, 2010 , Revised October 29, 2010 , Accepted December 8, 2010
 
American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, May 2011, Vol. 20, 119-123. doi:10.1044/1058-0360(2010/10-0059)
History: Received June 28, 2010; Revised October 29, 2010; Accepted December 8, 2010
Web of Science® Times Cited: 10

Purpose This study was designed to assess potential contributors to listener variability in judgments of intelligibility.

Method A total of 228 unfamiliar everyday listeners judged speech samples from 3 individuals with dysarthria. Samples were the single-word phonetic contrast test, the Sentence Intelligibility Test, an unpredictable sentence intelligibility test, and conversational speech.

Results Across speakers, significant variability was found for all samples except the phonetic contrast test. Across tasks, significant variability was found for all speakers. There were no significant differences in age, gender, or education between the highest and lowest scoring listeners on the phonetic contrast test.

Conclusions These findings suggest that seemingly objective intelligibility tests are subject to a number of factors that affect scores.

Acknowledgments
This work was partially supported by a grant from the Lebel Endowment to the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders at the University of Houston.
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