Development and Evaluation of a Computer-Based System to Measure and Analyze Pause and Speech Events in Extended Speech Samples of Normal and Dysarthric Speakers with ALS

J Green, D Beukelman, L Ball, C Ullman, K Maassen


The purpose of this project was to develop and evaluate a computer-based system to measure and analyze speech and pause time in paragraph length speech samples.  Speech samples were produced by 10 non-disabled adult speakers, and 37 speakers with dysarthria due to amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Pause durations, speech durations and pause frequency were measured in two ways. First, the computer-assisted detection methods were developed for Matlab to determine the onset and offset of speech and pause events. Second, a research assistant determined the onset and offset of speech and pause events using the CoolEdit program to display acoustic waveform and monitored associated speech signals. Reliability and validity data will be presented.