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Sensory articulation speech system: SASSy – a 3D animation based therapeutic application for motor speech disorders

Pip Cornelius (Senior Lecturer in the Faculty of Health and Life Sciences, De Montfort University, Leicester, UK)
Nick Higgett (Principal Lecturer in the Faculty of Art & Design, De Montfort University, Leicester, UK)
Rehan Kaleem (Based in the Faculty of Art & Design, De Montfort University, Leicester, UK)

Journal of Assistive Technologies

ISSN: 1754-9450

Article publication date: 16 September 2011

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to describe the development of a multimedia 3D animation based resource for speech sound training.

Design/methodology/approach

Speech sound training is historically auditory in nature and speech sound disorders often prove intractable. Sensory articulation speech system (SASSy) combines auditory and visual stimuli as a novel multimedia resource to enhance learning.

Findings

The advantages of the visual presentation of information have been described by the authors of various studies using instrumental analysis of speech as a training resource. With the further integration of a speech analysis and biofeedback mechanism, SASSy is designed to be used as a non‐invasive diagnostic and therapeutic tool.

Practical implications

Intended users are speech and language therapy clients with motor speech sound disorders (MSDs). At any one time, up to 20 per cent of the population – adults and children – have a speech disorder arising from a difficulty in producing perceptually acceptable speech sounds. Therapy is very time and resource intensive and the consultative role that speech and language therapists are now assuming means they have less capacity to deliver and assess traditional articulation therapy. Training and feedback can only be on a 1:1 basis and relies on the therapist providing an explanation and description of the speech mechanism to facilitate correct speech.

Originality/value

MSDs often prove resistant to change which is frustrating for clients and therapists alike. It is anticipated that a new, non‐intrusive instrumental analytic and therapeutic tool will improve the treatment and management of motor speech disorders. Animations of speech sounds were derived from the instrumental analysis of real speech to provide a real‐time visual sequence for users to match.

Keywords

Citation

Cornelius, P., Higgett, N. and Kaleem, R. (2011), "Sensory articulation speech system: SASSy – a 3D animation based therapeutic application for motor speech disorders", Journal of Assistive Technologies, Vol. 5 No. 3, pp. 123-130. https://doi.org/10.1108/17549451111173479

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited