Speech Analysis to Evaluate Robot-Assisted Recreation of Older Adults with Dementia
Tomoko Nariai*, Shiroh Itai**, and Hiroaki Kojima***
2-19-1 Ohmiya, Suginami, Tokyo 168-8508, Japan
**Tsukuba Gakuin University
3-1 Azuma, Tsukuba, Ibaraki 305-0031, Japan
***National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST)
1-1-1 Umezono, Tsukuba, Ibaraki 305-8560, Japan
We investigated robot-assisted recreation (RAR) for improving the quality of life (QoL) of older adults with dementia in an aged care facility. However, as a simple method to evaluate RAR has not been established at the field level, limited scientific data exists to show its effectiveness. To solve this problem, we studied a method to evaluate RAR based on speech analysis, which can reduce the burden on subjects (older adults) and data analysts. This study conducted both subjective and objective analyses of speech data. Subjective analysis based on the transcripts of speech data resulted in findings that supported and added to the knowledge of previous research, such as an increased willingness to participate in RAR, positive feelings toward the future, and interest in interacting with others. The results of the objective analysis based on the fundamental frequency (F0) demonstrated that there was a difference in the distribution of F0 during RAR and the interviews conducted before and after RAR. This study thus provides the prospect for easy evaluation of recreational activities, including RAR, in aged care facilities at the field level using speech analysis.
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