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Comparing Self-Perceptions to Subjective and Objective Measures of Femininity in Transgender Speakers Open Access

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Due to the increasing number of Male-to-Female transgender (TG) individuals seeking speech-language pathology services, there is a need for empirical study of vocal feminization assessment and treatment. Current research indicates psychosocial perceptions and TG-specific questionnaires may be beneficial for this population. This study explored relationships between acoustic properties, listener perceptions and speaker's self-perceptions of 20 TG and 10 nonTG voices, as well as psychosocial measures (i.e., TSEQ, VHI and V-RQOL). Mean fundamental frequency and semitone range, but not perturbations in the voice, were strongly related to femininity as rated by speaker or listener. Listener-rated femininity correlated with speaker's self-rated femininity. TSEQ scores were strongly correlated with both the VHI and V-RQOL but not self-or listener-rated femininity. Results of this study provide rationale for training mean speaking Fo and intonation in vocal feminization treatment, as well as using the speaker's perceptions to predict listener-perception and the TSEQ to measure impact of voice on psychosocial well-being of male-to-female transgender individuals.

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