Pamela A. Davis

University of Vermont

Communications Sciences Disorders and Psychology


Mentor: John Limber, Associate Professor of Psychology

Adults' Perceptions of People with Mild Voice Disorders

From earliest recorded history the elements of voice, pitch level, loudness and quality have been said to reveal our personality and self concept with reference to such dimensions as passiveness, aggressiveness, masculinity, femininity, maturity or immaturity, and though we continue to judge people based on the sounds of their voices formal studies of the relationship between personality and voice in normal subjects have shown uncertain results; if they have proved anything it is that we have learned to accept a wide variety of voices as normal.

Research in the area of mild voice disorders has usually focused on adolescents perceptions of normal or voice disordered children (Ruscello, Bradshaw & Blankenship 1991). The purpose of this study was to investigate adult perceptions of speech and non-speech characteristics of other adults with mild voice disorders. Two questionnaires were used in this study which covered four sections dealing with the emotional health of the voice disordered adult, leadership capabilities, intelligence and job capabilities and overall voice characteristics.

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