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The voice of the elderly: pleasantness and voice quality

Grant number: 11/23441-7
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): May 01, 2012
Effective date (End): December 31, 2012
Field of knowledge:Health Sciences - Speech Therapy
Principal Investigator:Eliana Maria Gradim Fabbron
Grantee:Uiara Aparecida dos Santos
Host Institution: Faculdade de Filosofia e Ciências (FFC). Universidade Estadual Paulista (UNESP). Campus de Marília. Marília , SP, Brazil


Life expectancy is increasing worldwide. In speech therapy, research to understand the changes in communication patterns in the elderly population are important as they seek to improve the quality of social relationships of the individual and, specifically in the voice area, they aim at the understanding of vocal aging and its impact on the vocal communication process. Such studies support the development of proposals for intervention and health promotion for the elderly with their direct implication on communication. Studies about the judgment of pleasantness and positive or negative adjectives made by the person's voice showed that some vocal characteristics can influence the perception that the listener has about the speaker. Thus, we intend to seek the understanding of the judgment of listeners on the voices of the elderly and to observe if the vocal changes that these individuals suffer influence the listener's perception of their personal characteristics. So, this project aims at perceptual evaluation and auditory-perceptive analyses of the voices of elderly women who were previously judged in the previous study on the pleasantness and adjectives from a range of beliefs and attitudes toward the elderly. It also aims at investigating the correlation with vocal parameters of this judgment, raised by means of perceptual evaluations and auditory-perceptive analyses. The research project presented here is part of an extension project developed by teachers and students of the speech therapy course, with the students of the project University open to seniors (Universidade Aberta à Terceira Idade - UNATI) of Unesp/Marília and users of the Basic Health Units of the city of Marília, that aims at promoting the quality of oral communication and maintenance of vocal health of the participants.(AU)

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