Research Article|Articles in Press

Comparison of Client-Led Asynchronous and Clinician-Led Synchronous Online Methods for Evaluation of Subjective Vocal Measures in Teachers: A Feasibility Study



      COVID-19 has transformed face to face teaching in classrooms to online and hybrid modes. Increased vocal intensity/ pitch to call attention of students and transact in the online class, inappropriate posture (head, neck & upper trunk) while using the laptop and other online tools cause vocal loading leading to voice related concerns in teachers. Tele voice assessment is a feasible alternative means to seek professional help in the current situation and possibly in the future too. Client-led asynchronous and clinician-led synchronous voice recordings for clinical vocal measures among school teachers were compared in this study.


      Twenty-five school teachers (21 females & four males) from Chennai consented to the study. Information of voice use, its impact on the day-to-day situations, self-perception of vocal fatigue, and their recorded voice sample (phonation & speaking) were obtained online (asynchronous mode). Within a period of ten days, the clinician-led synchronous session was planned on a mutually convenient time for obtaining voice samples through zoom call. The voice samples obtained were compared for clinical measures and perceptual voice evaluation.


      Participants reported of vocal symptoms and increased vocal fatigue scores. The maximum phonation time values obtained through synchronous mode were lesser when compared to asynchronous mode. Also, variability was noted in the perceptual vocal measures of voice samples obtained through synchronous mode. During synchronous voice recording & evaluation, the background noise, internet stability, audio enhancement feature, and microphone placement & quality could be monitored, and immediate feedback was provided. Additionally, the asynchronous recording can be supplemented for synchronous recording, with clear instructions & demonstration.


      This study explored the feasibility of using synchronous and asynchronous voice recording for voice analysis in school teachers. The findings could serve as a base to understand the advantages and challenges of using client-led asynchronous and clinician-led synchronous methods for estimating vocal measures.

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