Improving Speech Recognition for the Elderly: A New Corpus of Elderly Japanese Speech and Investigation of Acoustic Modeling for Speech Recognition

Meiko Fukuda, Hiromitsu Nishizaki, Yurie Iribe, Ryota Nishimura, Norihide Kitaoka


Abstract
In an aging society like Japan, a highly accurate speech recognition system is needed for use in electronic devices for the elderly, but this level of accuracy cannot be obtained using conventional speech recognition systems due to the unique features of the speech of elderly people. S-JNAS, a corpus of elderly Japanese speech, is widely used for acoustic modeling in Japan, but the average age of its speakers is 67.6 years old. Since average life expectancy in Japan is now 84.2 years, we are constructing a new speech corpus, which currently consists of the utterances of 221 speakers with an average age of 79.2, collected from four regions of Japan. In addition, we expand on our previous study (Fukuda, 2019) by further investigating the construction of acoustic models suitable for elderly speech. We create new acoustic models and train them using a combination of existing Japanese speech corpora (JNAS, S-JNAS, CSJ), with and without our ‘super-elderly’ speech data, and conduct speech recognition experiments. Our new acoustic models achieve word error rates (WER) as low as 13.38%, exceeding the results of our previous study in which we used the CSJ acoustic model adapted for elderly speech (17.4% WER).
Anthology ID:
2020.lrec-1.810
Volume:
Proceedings of the 12th Language Resources and Evaluation Conference
Month:
May
Year:
2020
Address:
Marseille, France
Venue:
LREC
SIG:
Publisher:
European Language Resources Association
Note:
Pages:
6578–6585
Language:
English
URL:
https://aclanthology.org/2020.lrec-1.810
DOI:
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PDF:
https://aclanthology.org/2020.lrec-1.810.pdf