Effects of perceived disability on persuasiveness of computer-synthesized speech

Steven E. Stern, John W. Mullennix, Stephen J. Wilson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


Are perceptions of computer-synthesized speech altered by the belief that the person using this technology is disabled? In a 2 × 2 factorial design, participants completed an attitude pretest and were randomly assigned to watch an actor deliver a persuasive appeal under 1 of the following 4 conditions: disabled or nondisabled using normal speech and disabled or nondisabled using computer-synthesized speech. Participants then completed a posttest survey and a series of questionnaires assessing perceptions of voice, speaker, and message. Natural speech was perceived more favorably and was more persuasive than computer-synthesized speech. When the speaker was perceived to be speech-disabled, however, this difference diminished. This finding suggests that negatively viewed assistive technologies will be perceived more favorably when used by people with disabilities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)411-417
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Applied Psychology
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2002

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Applied Psychology


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