Cochlear Implants Special Issue Article: Vocal Emotion Recognition by Normal-Hearing Listeners and Cochlear Implant Users

Xin Luo, Qian Jie Fu, John J. Galvin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

83 Scopus citations

Abstract

The present study investigated the ability of normal-hearing listeners and cochlear implant users to recognize vocal emotions. Sentences were produced by 1 male and 1 female talker according to 5 target emotions: angry, anxious, happy, sad, and neutral. Overall amplitude differences between the stimuli were either preserved or normalized. In experiment 1, vocal emotion recognition was measured in normal-hearing and cochlear implant listeners; cochlear implant subjects were tested using their clinically assigned processors. When overall amplitude cues were preserved, normal-hearing listeners achieved near-perfect performance, whereas listeners with cochlear implant recognized less than half of the target emotions. Removing the overall amplitude cues significantly worsened mean normal-hearing and cochlear implant performance. In experiment 2, vocal emotion recognition was measured in listeners with cochlear implant as a function of the number of channels (from 1 to 8) and envelope filter cutoff frequency (50 vs 400 Hz) in experimental speech processors. In experiment 3, vocal emotion recognition was measured in normal-hearing listeners as a function of the number of channels (from 1 to 16) and envelope filter cutoff frequency (50 vs 500 Hz) in acoustic cochlear implant simulations. Results from experiments 2 and 3 showed that both cochlear implant and normal-hearing performance significantly improved as the number of channels or the envelope filter cutoff frequency was increased. The results suggest that spectral, temporal, and overall amplitude cues each contribute to vocal emotion recognition. The poorer cochlear implant performance is most likely attributable to the lack of salient pitch cues and the limited functional spectral resolution.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)301-315
Number of pages15
JournalTrends in Amplification
Volume11
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2007
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • cochlear implant
  • normal hearing
  • spectral resolution
  • temporal resolution
  • vocal emotion

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Speech and Hearing

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Cochlear Implants Special Issue Article: Vocal Emotion Recognition by Normal-Hearing Listeners and Cochlear Implant Users'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this