15th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences (ICPhS-15)

Barcelona, Spain
August 3-9, 2003


Voice and Information Processing

Claire Gélinas-Chebat (1), Jean-Charles Chebat (2), Robert Boivin (1)

(1) Université du Québec à Montréal, Canada
(2) Ecole des Hautes Etudes Commerciales, Canada

Do intonation, intensity, speech rate and source gender impact on information processing? In a factorial design experiment, we tried to put forward an answer to those questions. Two professional actors (a male and a female) were asked to record a message previously validated about bank services. The experimental conditions totalized 14 conditions (6 conditions plus the moderate for both male and female source's voices) and were presented to undergraduate university students. We asked subjects to complete a questionnaire (a series of questions 7 points Likert scales) concerning different dimensions about the message, the services, the spokesperson and the bank. A total of 391 questionnaires were fully completed, 51,2% of the subjects heard the female voice source and 48,9% the male voice. Mean age was 26,51. Results show that phonetic variables affect the dependant variables differently. The speech rate is the most important variable and more specifically impact the most on information processing i.e. the spokesperson perception, attitudes to the message, the services or the bank. The attractiveness and the impression of competence of the spokesperson are significantly induced by the speech rate. In this message about banking services, the intelligibility of the message is not influenced by the intensity or the intonation. There is no significant impact of the source and respondents gender.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Gélinas-Chebat, Claire / Chebat, Jean-Charles / Boivin, Robert (2003): "Voice and information processing", In ICPhS-15, 667-670.