Speech in masks: New papers out

Our lab has two papers now available that report on the effects of face masks on speech:

  1. “The impact of face masks on spectral acoustics of speech: Effect of clear and loud speech styles” was just published in the Journal of the Acoustical Society of America. We found that the low-pass filter effects of face masks are consistent across habitual, clear, & loud speech styles in young, healthy talkers, but effortful speech can help compensate for these acoustic effects.

  2. “Acoustic and perceptual impact of face masks on speech: A scoping review” is now available as a preprint. We conducted a search in May 2021 examining evidence reporting on how face masks affect speech acoustics and/or perceptual consequences during spoken communication. We report on the various outcome measures reported, types of masks studied, and study populations included. Note that since the search was completed in May 2021, more research on the topic has been published, so this scoping review is a snapshot into the available literature.

Big shout out to Gursharan Badh for her work on these projects! These papers are the first two available in a series of our Speech-in-Masks studies (which we affectionately refer to as our SiM studies). Next week, I (Thea) will be presenting on the effects of face masks and effortful speech on speech acoustics in talkers with Parkinson’s disease. We have a couple of manuscripts in the works that explore perceptual consequences of these effects as well.

Stay tuned for more!