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An Evaluation Study on Using an Automatic Speech Recognition System to Identify EFL Students’ Pronunciation Problems
Chen, Hao Jan
Automatic speech recognition
ASR and human ratings
Perceptions toward ASR
|Abstract:|| 對英語為外語的學習者來說，英語口說能力一直都是相當重要的技能。然由於諸多限制，口說能力的涵養時常受忽略且甚少被教學。隨著語音辨識技術（即ASR，Automatic Speech Recognition）的發展，教師們開始有更多機會鍛鍊學生的口語能力。本研究之目的，即是探究學習者如何與一個載有語音辨識技術的免費網站LearnMode互動，此網站不僅讓教師能自行設計練習題，也能幫助在學生低焦慮感的環境中，逐漸熟習開口說英語。對著ASR系統練習同時，此系統也在為學習者診斷其問題發音，並以顏色標記或評語的方式，提供學習者即時的修正性回饋。在本研究中，總計有66名高中學生成為受試者，他們完成了20個根據易混淆母音/子音設計的口說任務。此外，受試者也在完成任務後填寫了一份問卷，當中10位更接受了一對一的訪談，藉此深入了解他們對於語音辨識科技的觀感與態度。
English speaking ability has been highly recognized as an important skill for EFL learners. Due to many constraints, though, the speaking skill cultivation is often neglected and seldom taught at school. With the developing of automatic speech recognition technologies, teachers can provide students with more opportunities to train their oral abilities. The current study investigates how learners interact with a website named LearnMode, enhanced by automatic speech technology which allows teachers to create their own speaking exercises and helps EFL learners get accustomed to speaking English under a low anxiety environment. In the meantime, the ASR system can diagnose their problematic pronunciation and offer immediate corrective feedback in the form of color highlight and comments. There are in total 66 senior high school students invited to complete 20 tasks with regard to difficult pairs of vowels and consonants. One questionnaire and one-on-one interviewed are also administered to probe into the learners’ perceptions and attitudes of the speech technologies. The result indicates that there is a high degree of agreement of the error detection between the automatic speech recognition system and human raters. In five randomly selected units among twenty, there are four units showing that over eighty-five percent of mispronounced words locatedby ASR technology and teachers respectively are the same. Also, it is shown that learners enjoy ASR assistance and are more willing to speak English but they still want teachers to help them refine their problematic sounds. With regard to the immediate feedback mechanism, participants consider the color highlight helpful, but they would love to have further instructions on how to make the adjustment. These findings can serve as useful information for teachers who would like to incorporate speaking enhancement into their teaching and for researchers who intend to develop better ASR technologies for language teaching and learning.
|Appears in Collections:||學位論文|
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