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Familiar Voices Are More Intelligible, Even if They Are Not Recognized as Familiar

Holmes, E; Domingo, Y; Johnsrude, IS; (2018) Familiar Voices Are More Intelligible, Even if They Are Not Recognized as Familiar. Psychological Science 10.1177/0956797618779083. Green open access

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Abstract

We can recognize familiar people by their voices, and familiar talkers are more intelligible than unfamiliar talkers when competing talkers are present. However, whether the acoustic voice characteristics that permit recognition and those that benefit intelligibility are the same or different is unknown. Here, we recruited pairs of participants who had known each other for 6 months or longer and manipulated the acoustic correlates of two voice characteristics (vocal tract length and glottal pulse rate). These had different effects on explicit recognition of and the speech-intelligibility benefit realized from familiar voices. Furthermore, even when explicit recognition of familiar voices was eliminated, they were still more intelligible than unfamiliar voices-demonstrating that familiar voices do not need to be explicitly recognized to benefit intelligibility. Processing familiar-voice information appears therefore to depend on multiple, at least partially independent, systems that are recruited depending on the perceptual goal of the listener.

Type: Article
Title: Familiar Voices Are More Intelligible, Even if They Are Not Recognized as Familiar
Location: United States
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1177/0956797618779083
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1177/0956797618779083
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: Attention, auditory perception, speech perception
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10055998
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