The P* reading group will be meeting again this Thursday (26 October) at 10 in room 117 (and on Zoom, at the following link). This week, in preparation for this week’s colloquium talk, Irene will be leading discussion on Chris Carignan’s 2021 paper A practical method of estimating the time-varying degree of vowel nasalization from acoustic features. The paper is attached, and also available in the Google Drive. Here is the abstract:

This paper presents a simple and easy-to-use method of creating a time-varying signal of the degree of nasalization in vowels, generated from acoustic features measured in oral and nasalized vowel contexts. The method is presented for separate models constructed using two sets of acoustic features: (1) an uninformed set of 13 Mel-frequency cepstral coefficients (MFCCs) and (2) a combination of the 13 MFCCs and a phonetically informed set of 20 acoustic features of vowel nasality derived from previous research. Both models are compared against two traditional approaches to estimating vowel nasalization from acoustics: A1-P0 and A1-P1, as well as their formant-compensated counterparts. Data include productions from six speakers of different language backgrounds, producing 11 different qualities within the vowel quadrilateral. The results generated from each of the methods are compared against nasometric measurements, representing an objective “ground truth” of the degree of nasalization. The results suggest that the proposed method is more robust than conventional acoustic approaches, generating signals which correlate strongly with nasometric measures across all vowel qualities and all speakers and accurately approximate the time-varying change in the degree of nasalization. Finally, an experimental example is provided to help researchers implement the method in their own study designs.

The full schedule for the semester is available here.