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Audiology. 1980;19(5):434-55.

Influence of the speaker and other factors affecting speech intelligibility.


20 phonetically balanced word lists comprising 25 words in each and recorded on tape by a professional announcer have been tested on 45 subjects. Analysis of the results has enabled each of the 500 words to be assigned a grade of difficulty within the range 1-35. 25 'difficult' and 25 'easy' words re-recorded from the original tapes to form two new lists have been shown to retain their same grade of difficulty. With the same lists recorded by two additional speakers, however, word order difficulty was dramatically altered. Consideration has been given to various factors likely to affect word intelligibility including phonetic construction, word familiarity and word environment. None appeared to exert any marked influence. It is concluded that the characteristics of any recorded word articulation material are determined predominantly by the speaker and the recording technique adopted and are largely independent of other factors. Given sufficient experimental data upon recorded material, words can be selected out of context and re-recorded to provide test lists with virtually any desired characteristics.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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