Phonetics Laboratory

Principal Investigators
Chiu-yu TSENG 
〔Lab Profile〕
The major differences of my research from most phoneticians are the topics and methods. My collaboration with speech scientists and engineers dates back to 1982, which has led me away from studying limited samples and numbers of speakers toward multiple speakers, larger chunks of more realistic speech, and larger quantities of data (though modest by speech technology community standards). My research has integrated techniques from engineering and speech technology into acoustic phonetic experimental studies. My investigation of Mandarin Chinese fluent speech prosody beyond the sentence level begins from a macro/top-down perspective, taking intonation units larger than the phrase or sentence into consideration, has resulted in the emergence of what I believe to be the defining feature of fluent speech prosody: systematic cross-phrase prosodic association, which constitutes prosodic context. This approach contrasts with analyses of discourse intonation based on patterns of individual phrase intonation. Using quantitative evidence, I have developed a hierarchical prosodic framework, which models the formation of spoken discourse prosody as the accumulation of multi-layered prosodic contributions. I have also been able to tease apart the contributions to cross-phrase prosodic association made by each layer of the prosodic hierarchy for a range of acoustic parameters for which, interestingly, the contributions made by supra-segmental acoustic correlates have been found to vary. As of 2008, I have also begun phonetic comparisons of L1 and L2 English (with a focus on prosody) as a member of AESOP (Asian English Speech cOrpus Project).

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