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Comparison between perceptual assessments of nasality and nasalance scores
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Clinical Sciences, Speech and Language Therapy.
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Clinical Sciences, Speech and Language Therapy.
2012 (English)In: International journal of language and communication disorders, ISSN 1368-2822, E-ISSN 1460-6984, Vol. 47, no 5, 556-566 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Background: There are different reports of the usefulness of the Nasometer™ as a complement to listening, often as correlation calculations between listening and nasalance measurements. Differences between findings have been attributed to listener experience and types of speech stimuli.

Aims: To compare nasalance scores from the Nasometer with perceptual assessments, for the same and different Swedish speech stimuli, using three groups of listeners with differing levels of experience in judging speech nasality. Methods & Procedures: To compare nasalance scores and blinded listener ratings of randomized recordings using three groups of listeners and two groups of speakers. Speakers were either classified as having hypernasal speech or speech with typical speech resonance. Listeners were speech-language pathologists (SLPs) working predominantly with resonance disorders, other SLPs and untrained listeners.

Outcomes & Results: Correlations (r(s) ) between hypernasality ratings and nasalance scores for each listener group and speech stimuli were calculated. For both groups of SLPs all correlations between perceptual ratings and nasalance scores were significant at p= 0.01. The correlations between the nasalance scores and ratings by listeners in the SLP groups were higher than those for the untrained listener group regardless of stimulus type. Post-hoc Mann-Whitney U-tests showed that the only difference that was significant was expert SLP group versus untrained listener group. Secondly, correlations between perceptual ratings and oral stimulus nasalance scores were higher when the perceptual ratings were based on spontaneous speech rather than on the oral stimulus. However, a Wilcoxon signed rank test showed that the difference was not significant. A third finding was that correlations between oral stimulus nasalance scores and perceptual scores were higher than those between mixed stimulus nasalance scores and perceptual scores. A Wilcoxon signed rank test showed that the difference was significant.

Conclusions & Implications: The Nasometer might be useful for the SLP with limited experience in assessing resonance disorders in differentiating between hyper- and hyponasality. With listener reliability for ratings of hypernasality still being an issue, the use of a nasalance score as a complement to the perceptual evaluation will also aid the expert SLP. It will give an alternative way of quantifying speech resonance and might help in especially hard to judge cases.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Wiley-Blackwell, 2012. Vol. 47, no 5, 556-566 p.
Keyword [en]
nasality, perceptual, acoustics
National Category
Other Medical Sciences not elsewhere specified
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-60204DOI: 10.1111/j.1460-6984.2012.00165.xPubMedID: 22938066OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-60204DiVA: diva2:558753
Available from: 2012-10-04 Created: 2012-10-04 Last updated: 2017-12-07Bibliographically approved

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