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1.
Proc Conf Assoc Comput Linguist Meet ; 2020: 177-185, 2020 Jul.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33060888

RESUMO

Many clinical assessment instruments used to diagnose language impairments in children include a task in which the subject must formulate a sentence to describe an image using a specific target word. Because producing sentences in this way requires the speaker to integrate syntactic and semantic knowledge in a complex manner, responses are typically evaluated on several different dimensions of appropriateness yielding a single composite score for each response. In this paper, we present a dataset consisting of non-clinically elicited responses for three related sentence formulation tasks, and we propose an approach for automatically evaluating their appropriateness. Using neural machine translation, we generate correct-incorrect sentence pairs to serve as synthetic data in order to increase the amount and diversity of training data for our scoring model. Our scoring model uses transfer learning to facilitate automatic sentence appropriateness evaluation. We further compare custom word embeddings with pre-trained contextualized embeddings serving as features for our scoring model. We find that transfer learning improves scoring accuracy, particularly when using pre-trained contextualized embeddings.

2.
Annu Int Conf IEEE Eng Med Biol Soc ; 2020: 6111-6114, 2020 07.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33019365

RESUMO

This study describes a fully automated method of expressive language assessment based on vocal responses of children to a sentence repetition task (SRT), a language test that taps into core language skills. Our proposed method automatically transcribes the vocal responses using a test-specific automatic speech recognition system. From the transcriptions, a regression model predicts the gold standard test scores provided by speech-language pathologists. Our preliminary experimental results on audio recordings of 104 children (43 with typical development and 61 with a neurodevelopmental disorder) verifies the feasibility of the proposed automatic method for predicting gold standard scores on this language test, with averaged mean absolute error of 6.52 (on a observed score range from 0 to 90 with a mean value of 49.56) between observed and predicted ratings.Clinical relevance-We describe the use of fully automatic voice-based scoring in language assessment including the clinical impact this development may have on the field of speech-language pathology. The automated test also creates a technological foundation for the computerization of a broad array of tests for voice-based language assessment.


Assuntos
Patologia da Fala e Linguagem , Voz , Criança , Humanos , Idioma , Desenvolvimento da Linguagem , Testes de Linguagem
3.
J Vis ; 20(7): 13, 2020 07 01.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-32678878

RESUMO

Despite many recent advances in the field of computer vision, there remains a disconnect between how computers process images and how humans understand them. To begin to bridge this gap, we propose a framework that integrates human-elicited gaze and spoken language to label perceptually important regions in an image. Our work relies on the notion that gaze and spoken narratives can jointly model how humans inspect and analyze images. Using an unsupervised bitext alignment algorithm originally developed for machine translation, we create meaningful mappings between participants' eye movements over an image and their spoken descriptions of that image. The resulting multimodal alignments are then used to annotate image regions with linguistic labels. The accuracy of these labels exceeds that of baseline alignments obtained using purely temporal correspondence between fixations and words. We also find differences in system performances when identifying image regions using clustering methods that rely on gaze information rather than image features. The alignments produced by our framework can be used to create a database of low-level image features and high-level semantic annotations corresponding to perceptually important image regions. The framework can potentially be applied to any multimodal data stream and to any visual domain. To this end, we provide the research community with access to the computational framework.

4.
Proc Conf Assoc Comput Linguist Meet ; 2015: 212-217, 2015 Jul.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-29217874

RESUMO

A defining symptom of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is the presence of restricted and repetitive activities and interests, which can surface in language as a perseverative focus on idiosyncratic topics. In this paper, we use semantic similarity measures to identify such idiosyncratic topics in narratives produced by children with and without ASD. We find that neurotypical children tend to use the same words and semantic concepts when retelling the same narrative, while children with ASD, even when producing accurate retellings, use different words and concepts relative not only to neurotypical children but also to other children with ASD. Our results indicate that children with ASD not only stray from the target topic but do so in idiosyncratic ways according to their own restricted interests.

5.
SLT Workshop Spok Lang Technol ; 2014: 266-271, 2014 Dec.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-29057398

RESUMO

Deficits in semantic and pragmatic expression are among the hallmark linguistic features of autism. Recent work in deriving computational correlates of clinical spoken language measures has demonstrated the utility of automated linguistic analysis for characterizing the language of children with autism. Most of this research, however, has focused either on young children still acquiring language or on small populations covering a wide age range. In this paper, we extract numerous linguistic features from narratives produced by two groups of children with and without autism from two narrow age ranges. We find that although many differences between diagnostic groups remain constant with age, certain pragmatic measures, particularly the ability to remain on topic and avoid digressions, seem to improve. These results confirm findings reported in the psychology literature while underscoring the need for careful consideration of the age range of the population under investigation when performing clinically oriented computational analysis of spoken language.

6.
Proc Conf ; 2013: 709-714, 2013 Jun.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-25419547

RESUMO

Atypical semantic and pragmatic expression is frequently reported in the language of children with autism. Although this atypicality often manifests itself in the use of unusual or unexpected words and phrases, the rate of use of such unexpected words is rarely directly measured or quantified. In this paper, we use distributional semantic models to automatically identify unexpected words in narrative retellings by children with autism. The classification of unexpected words is sufficiently accurate to distinguish the retellings of children with autism from those with typical development. These techniques demonstrate the potential of applying automated language analysis techniques to clinically elicited language data for diagnostic purposes.

7.
Workshop Child Comput Interact ; 2012: 1-6, 2012 Sep 14.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-28691126

RESUMO

Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is characterized by atypical and idiosyncratic language, which often has its roots in pragmatic deficits. Identifying and measuring pragmatic language ability is challenging and requires substantial clinical expertise. In this paper, we present a method for automatically identifying pragmatically inappropriate language in narratives using two features related to relevance and topicality. These features, which are derived using techniques from machine translation and information retrieval, are able to distinguish the narratives from children with ASD from those of their language-matched peers and may prove useful in the development of automated screening tools for autism and neurodevelopmental disorders.

8.
Autism ; 14(3): 215-36, 2010 May.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-20591942

RESUMO

We present results obtained with new instrumental methods for the acoustic analysis of prosody to evaluate prosody production by children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and Typical Development (TD). Two tasks elicit focal stress - one in a vocal imitation paradigm, the other in a picture-description paradigm; a third task also uses a vocal imitation paradigm, and requires repeating stress patterns of two-syllable nonsense words. The instrumental methods differentiated significantly between the ASD and TD groups in all but the focal stress imitation task. The methods also showed smaller differences in the two vocal imitation tasks than in the picture-description task, as was predicted. In fact, in the nonsense word stress repetition task, the instrumental methods showed better performance for the ASD group. The methods also revealed that the acoustic features that predict auditory-perceptual judgment are not the same as those that differentiate between groups. Specifically, a key difference between the groups appears to be a difference in the balance between the various prosodic cues, such as pitch, amplitude, and duration, and not necessarily a difference in the strength or clarity with which prosodic contrasts are expressed.


Assuntos
Transtorno Autístico/psicologia , Instrução por Computador , Acústica da Fala , Percepção Auditiva , Criança , Pré-Escolar , Instrução por Computador/métodos , Humanos , Julgamento , Fonética , Escalas de Wechsler
9.
Speech Commun ; 51(11): 1082-1097, 2009 Nov 01.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-20160984

RESUMO

Assessment of prosody is important for diagnosis and remediation of speech and language disorders, for diagnosis of neurological conditions, and for foreign language instruction. Current assessment is largely auditory-perceptual, which has obvious drawbacks; however, automation of assessment faces numerous obstacles. We propose methods for automatically assessing production of lexical stress, focus, phrasing, pragmatic style, and vocal affect. Speech was analyzed from children in six tasks designed to elicit specific prosodic contrasts. The methods involve dynamic and global features, using spectral, fundamental frequency, and temporal information. The automatically computed scores were validated against mean scores from judges who, in all but one task, listened to "prosodic minimal pairs" of recordings, each pair containing two utterances from the same child with approximately the same phonemic material but differing on a specific prosodic dimension, such as stress. The judges identified the prosodic categories of the two utterances and rated the strength of their contrast. For almost all tasks, we found that the automated scores correlated with the mean scores approximately as well as the judges' individual scores. Real-time scores assigned during examination - as is fairly typical in speech assessment - correlated substantially less than the automated scores with the mean scores.

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