Estimation of Speech Intelligibility Using Speech Recognition Systems

Yusuke TAKANO  Kazuhiro KONDO  

IEICE TRANSACTIONS on Information and Systems   Vol.E93-D   No.12   pp.3368-3376
Publication Date: 2010/12/01
Online ISSN: 1745-1361
DOI: 10.1587/transinf.E93.D.3368
Print ISSN: 0916-8532
Type of Manuscript: PAPER
Category: Speech and Hearing
objective estimation,  speech intelligibility,  speech recognition,  Japanese Diagnostic Rhyme Test,  noise adaptation,  

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We attempted to estimate subjective scores of the Japanese Diagnostic Rhyme Test (DRT), a two-to-one forced selection speech intelligibility test. We used automatic speech recognizers with language models that force one of the words in the word-pair, mimicking the human recognition process of the DRT. Initial testing was done using speaker-independent models, and they showed significantly lower scores than subjective scores. The acoustic models were then adapted to each of the speakers in the corpus, and then adapted to noise at a specified SNR. Three different types of noise were tested: white noise, multi-talker (babble) noise, and pseudo-speech noise. The match between subjective and estimated scores improved significantly with noise-adapted models compared to speaker-independent models and the speaker-adapted models, when the adapted noise level and the tested level match. However, when SNR conditions do not match, the recognition scores degraded especially when tested SNR conditions were higher than the adapted noise level. Accordingly, we adapted the models to mixed levels of noise, i.e., multi-condition training. The adapted models now showed relatively high intelligibility matching subjective intelligibility performance over all levels of noise. The correlation between subjective and estimated intelligibility scores increased to 0.94 with multi-talker noise, 0.93 with white noise, and 0.89 with pseudo-speech noise, while the root mean square error (RMSE) reduced from more than 40 to 13.10, 13.05 and 16.06, respectively.