Catalogue

UK Data Service data catalogue record for:

Dynamic Variability in Speech: a Forensic Phonetic Study of British English, 2006-2007

Title details

SN: 6790
Title: Dynamic Variability in Speech: a Forensic Phonetic Study of British English, 2006-2007
Alternative title: DyViS Database
Persistent identifier: 10.5255/UKDA-SN-6790-1
Depositor: Nolan, F., University of Cambridge. Faculty of Modern and Medieval Languages. Department of Linguistics
Principal investigator(s): Nolan, F., University of Cambridge. Faculty of Modern and Medieval Languages. Department of Linguistics
Data collector(s): de Jong, G., University of Cambridge. Faculty of Modern and Medieval Languages. Department of Linguistics
McDougall, K., University of Cambridge. Faculty of Modern and Medieval Languages. Department of Linguistics
Hudson, T., University of Cambridge. Faculty of Modern and Medieval Languages. Department of Linguistics
Sponsor(s): Economic and Social Research Council
Grant number: RES-000-23-1248
Other acknowledgements: The telephone aspect of the project was made possible by a donation from BT (formerly British Telecom). The authors are grateful to the large number of speakers who participated in the recordings for the DyViS database. Thanks are due to Geoffrey Potter for technical assistance and to Mark J. Jones for his initial involvement in the design of the project and for ongoing feedback. Thanks are also due to Sophie Lawrence, Claire Nance, and Jana Dankovicova, who contributed to some of the transcripts. Sophie Lawrence also assisted with the recruitment of speakers. The authors are grateful to Philip Harrison for advice regarding the telephone intercept in the experimental set-up.

Subject Categories

Crime and law enforcement - Law, crime and legal systems
Language and linguistics - Media, communication and language

Abstract

This is a qualitative data collection.

The aim of the DyViS database is to provide a database of 100 speakers of similar age and with the same accent, primarily with a view to studying variation in personal voice characteristics untrammelled by accent variation. Such a resource has applications in forensic phonetic research, but will also be useful for studying many linguistic aspects of speech. The speakers are all male, aged between 18 and 25 years, and selected as speakers with Standard Southern British English (SSBE) pronunciation.

In order to elicit some of the range of variation a voice may exhibit, the speakers were recorded doing four tasks. In the first, they took part in a simulated police interview based on a crime, the details of which were supplied to them as they were interviewed. Some of the information, being incriminating within the imaginary scenario, had to be denied. In the second, the speaker engaged in a telephone conversation with an 'accomplice'. Both these tasks provide extensive examples of spontaneous conversation. The telephone call was recorded simultaneously direct and over a landline, allowing acoustic comparisons to be made. Speakers also read a text, and sentences containing target words. A subset of 20 returned over a month later to re-record non-contemporaneous versions of the reading tasks.

Further information about the project may be found on the ESRC Dynamic variability in speech: a forensic phonetic study of British English award webpage and on the DyVis project website.

Database Availability
Users should note that due to the size of the DyVis database, only the documentation files are available for download via the standard download route. Registered users interested in the sound files should contact the HelpDesk in the first instance to arrange supply of .wav (lossless format) audio files and accompanying text files. These materials can be used for internal research purposes only and may not be incorporated in whole or in part into any product or service.

Main Topics:
Forensic phonetics; personal voice characteristics; effects of stylistic variation on the voice; within-speaker variation over time; transmission characteristics of the telephone and its effect on the voice; population statistics for the voice; Standard Southern British English pronunciation; sound change.

Coverage, universe, methodology

Dates of fieldwork: March 2006 - August 2007
Country: England
Geography: Southern England
Spatial units: No spatial unit
Universe: Subnational
Male speakers aged 18-25 years with Standard Southern British English (SSBE) pronunciation. Coverage defined by age range and accent of English.
Time dimensions: Cross-sectional (one-time) study
Includes partial follow-up recordings of 20% of subjects.
Sampling procedures: Purposive selection/case studies; Volunteer sample
Number of units: 100 speakers; 20 speakers also made subsequent follow-up recordings.
Method of data collection: Face-to-face interview; Audio recording
Weighting: Not applicable

Keywords

CRIMEENGLANDENGLISH (LANGUAGE)
INTERPERSONAL COMMUNICATIONINTERVIEWS (DATA COLLECTION)LANGUAGE VARIATIONS
LINGUISTIC ANALYSISLINGUISTICSSOCIOLINGUISTICS
SPEECH

Administrative and access information

Date of release:
First edition: 19 July 2011
Copyright: Copyright F. Nolan and University of Cambridge, Department of Linguistics
Access conditions: The depositor has specified that registration is required and standard conditions of use apply. The depositor may be informed about usage. See terms and conditions of access for further information.
Please note: Users should note that due to the size of the DyVis database, only the documentation files are available for download via the standard download route. Registered users interested in the sound files should contact the HelpDesk in the first instance to arrange supply of .wav (lossless format) audio files and accompanying text files. These materials can be used for internal research purposes only and may not be incorporated in whole or in part into any product or service.
Availability: UK Data Service
Contact: Get in touch

Documentation

TitleFile NameSize (KB)
DyVis database information 6790_dyvis_database_information.pdf 1730
ESRC End-of-award report 6790_res-000-23-1248.pdf 484
Study information and citation UKDA_Study_6790_Information.htm 22
READ File read6790.htm 4

Publications

By principal investigator(s):
McDougall, K., Nolan, F., de Jong, G. and Hudson, T. (2006) 'A forensic phonetic study of 'dynamic' sources of variability in speech: the DyViS project', in P. Warren and C.I. Watson (eds.) Proceedings of the 11th Australasian International Conference on Speech Science and Technology, 6-8 December 2006, Auckland: Australasian Speech Science and Technology Association, pp.13-18.

de Jong, G., McDougall, K. and Nolan, F. (2007) 'Sound change and speaker identity: an acoustic study', in C. Mueller and S. Schoetz (eds.) Speaker classification, New York: Springer, pp.130-141. DOI 10.1007/978-3-540-74122-0_12.

McDougall, K. and Nolan, F. (2007) 'Discrimination of speakers using the formant dynamics of /u:/ in British English', Proceedings of the 16th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences, 6-10 August 2007, Germany: Saarbruecken, pp.1825-1828.

de Jong, G., McDougall, K., Hudson, T. and Nolan, F. (2007) 'The speaker-discriminating power of sounds undergoing historical change: a formant-based study', Proceedings of the 16th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences, 6-10 August 2007, Germany: Saarbruecken, pp.1813-1816.

Hudson, T., de Jong, G., McDougall, K., Harrison, P. and Nolan, F. (2007) 'F0 statistics for 100 young male speakers of Standard Southern British English', Proceedings of the 16th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences, 6-10 August 2007, Germany: Saarbruecken, pp.1809-1812.

Lawrence, S., Nolan, F. and McDougall, K. (2008) 'Acoustic and perceptual effects of telephone transmission on vowel quality', International Journal of Speech, Language and the Law, 15(2), pp.161-192.

Nolan, F., McDougall, K., de Jong, G. and Hudson, T. (2009) 'The DyViS database: style-controlled recordings of 100 homogeneous speakers for forensic phonetic research', International Journal of Speech, Language and the Law, 16(1), pp.31-57.

Resulting from secondary analysis:

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