ISCA Archive

Disfluency in Spontaneous Speech

Aix-en-Provence, France
September 10-12, 2005


Disfluencies as a Window on Cognitive Processing. An Analysis of Silent Pauses in Simultaneous Interpreting

Myriam Piccaluga (1), Jean-Luc Nespoulous (2), Bernard Harmegnies (1)

(1) Université de Mons-Hainaut, Mons, Belgium
(2) Université de Toulouse-Le Mirail, France

The paper focuses on silent pauses observed in the productions of subjects involved in simultaneous interpreting tasks. Four bilingual subjects with various degrees of expertise in interpreting and various degrees of mastery of the languages involved (French and Spanish) have been recorded while interpreting utterances of French and Spanish talks. The source discourses had been perturbated by changes both in speech rates (by time compression) and in auditory quality (by addition of a parasiting noise). On the basis of acoustical analyzes performed on the subjects’ productions, statistical analyzes focus both on the number and on the duration of the observed pauses. This double approach enables investigations of the kind of cognitive disturbances caused by the independent variables and allows further speculation on the semiology of the pauses durations.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Piccaluga, Myriam / Nespoulous, Jean-Luc / Harmegnies, Bernard (2005): "Disfluencies as a window on cognitive processing. an analysis of silent pauses in simultaneous interpreting", In DiSS-2005, 151-155.