Clear speech strategies in adverse listening conditions
In order to communicate effectively in adverse listening conditions, talkers typically make acoustic-phonetic and linguistic adaptations to their speech and produce clear speaking styles. In a series of linked studies, we have analysed these adaptations in adolescents, young and older adults, in order to investigate how the ability to maintain effective communication in such conditions varies across the lifespan. In our studies, we naturally elicit clear speaking styles by recording pairs of speakers while they complete a ‘spot the difference’ picture task together (diapix task) either in good listening conditions or in a range of adverse listening conditions affecting one or both of the speakers. These adverse conditions include babble noise, hearing loss simulations affecting one of the speakers, or passing the speech of one of the speakers through a noise-excited vocoder. In this talk, I will review our findings on developmental changes across the lifespan. I will also discuss the degree to which speakers tailor their clear speech strategies to specific adverse conditions and individual differences in clear speech strategies.