Cognitive Computation

, Volume 6, Issue 4, pp 892–913 | Cite as

Investigation of Speaker Group-Dependent Modelling for Recognition of Affective States from Speech

  • Ingo SiegertEmail author
  • David Philippou-Hübner
  • Kim Hartmann
  • Ronald Böck
  • Andreas Wendemuth


For successful human–machine-interaction (HCI) the pure textual information and the individual skills, preferences, and affective states of the user must be known. Therefore, as a starting point, the user’s actual affective state has to be recognized. In this work we investigated how additional knowledge, for example age and gender of the user, can be used to improve recognition of affective state. Two methods from automatic speech recognition are used to incorporate age and gender differences in recognition of affective state: speaker group-dependent (SGD) modelling and vocal tract length normalisation (VTLN). The investigations were performed on four corpora with acted and natural affected speech. Different features and two methods of classification (Gaussian mixture models (GMMs) and multi-layer perceptrons (MLPs)) were used. In addition, the effects of channel compensation and contextual characteristics were analysed. The results are compared with our own baseline results and with results reported in the literature. Two hypotheses were tested. First, incorporation of age information further improves speaker group-dependent modelling. Second, acoustic normalization does not achieve the same improvement as achieved by speaker group-dependent modelling, because the age and gender of a speaker affects the way emotions are expressed.


Affect recognition Companion systems Vocal tract length normalization Speaker group-dependent classifiers 



The work presented in this article was conducted within the Transregional Collaborative Research Centre SFB/TRR 62 “Companion-Technology for Cognitive Technical Systems” funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG). We also acknowledge the DFG for financing our computing cluster. Portions of the research in this article use the LAST MINUTE Corpus generated under the supervision of Professor Jörg Frommer and Professor Dietmar Rösner.


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© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ingo Siegert
    • 1
    Email author
  • David Philippou-Hübner
    • 1
  • Kim Hartmann
    • 1
  • Ronald Böck
    • 1
  • Andreas Wendemuth
    • 1
  1. 1.IIKT and CBBSOtto von Guericke University MagdeburgMagdeburgGermany

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