Processing speech of varying intelligibility

Rajka Smiljanic, Bharath Chandrasekaran*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


In this talk we examine how variation in intelligibility impacts speech processing with insights from behavioral and neuroimaging studies. We discuss a set of experiments that explore the extent to which listener-oriented speaking style changes, sentence context, and visual information contribute to enhanced word recognition in challenging listening conditions. We further examine whether these same enhancements impact speech processing beyond word recognition, namely recognition memory for sentences. The results show that both signal-related and contextual enhancements lead to improved speech recognition in noise and, crucially, to a substantially better sentence recall. We then discuss studies examining neural mechanisms involved in processing speech of varying intelligibility using fMRI. Previous fMRI studies have examined speech intelligibility by using artificially degraded speech stimuli. Few studies have examined natural variation in intelligibility. Here we present neuroimaging data from two studies that examine natural variations in speech intelligibility (native vs. non-native speech; audio versus audiovisual speech). Overall, combined insights from behavioral and neuroimaging studies provide important additions to our understanding of how different sources of variability in the speech signal affect speech processing and memory representations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number060102
JournalProceedings of Meetings on Acoustics
StatePublished - 2013
Event21st International Congress on Acoustics, ICA 2013 - 165th Meeting of the Acoustical Society of America - Montreal, QC, Canada
Duration: Jun 2 2013Jun 7 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Acoustics and Ultrasonics


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