NNL.20.007 – Adaptive Language Enabling Virtual Interactions

Route: NeuroLabNL: the ultimate living lab for brain, cognition and behavioural research

Cluster question: 069 What causes language variation and why do we understand each other despite the differences?

Communicating in online video-mediated platforms is no longer the exception. It has become the norm, in particular in health and education settings where efficient communication matters most. Very little is known, however, about the communicative efficiency of such virtual platforms. Compared to in-vivo face-to-face contexts, they support only limited use of visual cues such as hand gestures, directed eye gaze and posture – cues that are known to enhance speech comprehension (especially in noisy contexts) and conversational fluency. These limitations might be especially problematic for those who have language accessibility issues such as patients with language problems, older and hearing-impaired populations, children, and second-language users (including newly-arrived immigrants). The purpose of this project is to conduct corpus-based research as well as experimental studies to a) understand how these different populations achieve communication and use their language adaptively in virtual online platforms, b) provide evidence-based solutions where communication problems arise, and c) to communicate and disseminate this information to groups who can benefit from this knowledge most. The project will consist of a multidisciplinary group of experts in speech and language comprehension, conversational analysis, and multimodal communication as well as experts in bilingualism, language therapies, language learning, and patient communication. We will cooperate with, for example, the Sint Maartenskliniek (https://www.maartenskliniek.nl; clinical language therapies), second language teaching centers, senior homes, schools, as well as European online companies (e.g., BigBlueButton; https://bigbluebutton.org). The results will have specific implications for multiple (clinical and immigration) groups, but also broader consequences for all users of online video-mediated platforms and their developers for healthier communication globally. The results will also advance fundamental knowledge about how human language and communic

Keywords

accessibility, Diversity, language, multimodal communication, virtual interactions

Submitter

Organisation Radboud University/Donders Institute (RU)
Name Prof. Asli Ozyurek
E-mail asli.ozyurek@mpi.nl
Website https://www.ru.nl/english/people/ozyurek-h/