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J Speech Hear Res. 1985 Mar;28(1):96-103.

Speaking clearly for the hard of hearing I: Intelligibility differences between clear and conversational speech.


This paper is concerned with variations in the intelligibility of speech produced for hearing-impaired listeners under two conditions. Estimates were made of the magnitude of the intelligibility differences between attempts to speak clearly and attempts to speak conversationally. Five listeners with sensorineural hearing losses were tested on groups of nonsense sentences spoken clearly and conversationally by three male talkers as a function of level and frequency-gain characteristic. The average intelligibility difference between clear and conversational speech averaged across talker was found to be 17 percentage points. To a first approximation, this difference was independent of the listener, level, and frequency-gain characteristic. Analysis of segmental-level errors was only possible for two listeners and indicated that improvements in intelligibility occurred across all phoneme classes.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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