Adaptation to an electropalatograph palate: Acoustic, impressionistic, and perceptual data.

Sharynne McLeod, Jeff Searl

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

24 Citations (Scopus)


The purpose of this study was to evaluate adaptation to the electropalatograph (EPG) from the perspective of consonant acoustics, listener perceptions, and speaker ratings. METHOD: Seven adults with typical speech wore an EPG and pseudo-EPG palate over 2 days and produced syllables, read a passage, counted, and rated their adaptation to the palate. Consonant acoustics, listener ratings, and speaker ratings were analyzed. RESULTS: The spectral mean for the burst (/t/) and frication (/s/) was reduced for the first 60'120 min of wearing the pseudo-EPG palate. Temporal features (stop gap, frication, and syllable duration) were unaffected by wearing the pseudo-EPG palate. The EPG palate had a similar effect on consonant acoustics as the pseudo-EPG palate. Expert listener ratings indicated minimal to no change in speech naturalness or distortion from the pseudo-EPG or EPG palate. The sounds /tesh, d{ezh}, esh, s, z, {ezh}/ were most likely to be affected. Speaker self-ratings related to oral comfort, speech, tongue movement, appearance, and oral sensation were negatively affected by the presence of the palatal devices. CONCLUSIONS: Speakers detected a substantial difference when wearing a palatal device, but the effects on speech were minimal based on listener ratings. Spectral features of consonants were initially affected, although adaptation occurred. Wearing an EPG or pseudo-EPG palate for approximately 2 hr results in relatively normal-sounding speech with acoustic features similar to a no-palate condition.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)192-206
Number of pages15
JournalAmerican Journal of Speech-Language Pathology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - May 2006


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