Document Type

Conference Paper


Available under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial Share Alike 4.0 International Licence


Computer Sciences, Acoustics, Psychiatry

Publication Details

Paper presented at the 7th EAI International Symposium on Pervasive Computing Paradigms for Mental Health (MindCare), Boston, United States, January, 2018.


Six in-depth clinical interviews, involving six elderly female patients (aged 60+) and one female psychiatrist, were recorded and analysed for a number of prosodic accommodation variables.

Our analysis focused on pitch, speaking time, and vowel-space ratio. Findings indicate that there is a dynamic manifestation of prosodic accommodation over the course of the interactions. There is clear adaptation on the part of the psychiatrist, even going so far as to have a reduced vowel-space ratio, mirroring a reduced vowel-space ratio in the depressed patients. Previous research has found a reduced vowel-space ratio to be associated with psychological distress; however, we suggest that it indicates a high level of adaptation on the part of the psychiatrist and needs to be considered when analysing psychiatric clinical interactions.