SpecialTime: Automatically Detecting Dialogue Acts from Speech to Support Parent-Child Interaction Therapy

Bernd Huber, Richard F. Davis, III, Allison Cotter, Emily Junkin, Mindy Yard, Stuart Shieber, Elizabeth Brestan-Knight, and Krzysztof Z. Gajos


 


Abstract

Parent-child interaction therapy (PCIT) helps parents improve the quality of interaction with children who have behavior problems. The therapy trains parents to use effective dialogue acts when interacting with their children. Besides weekly coaching by therapists, the therapy relies on deliberate practice of skills by parents in their homes. We developed SpecialTime, a system that provides parents engaged in PCIT with automatic, real-time feedback on their dialogue act use. To do this, we first created a dataset of 6,022 parent dialogue acts, annotated by experts with dialogue act labels that therapists use to code parent speech. We then developed an algorithm that classifies the dialogue acts into 8 classes with an overall accuracy of 78%. To test the system in an actual clinical setting, we conducted a one month pilot study with four parents currently in therapy. The results suggest that automatic feedback on spoken dialogue acts is possible in PCIT, and that parents find the automatic feedback useful.

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Citation Information

Bernd Huber, Richard F. Davis, III, Allison Cotter, Emily Junkin, Mindy Yard, Stuart Shieber, Elizabeth Brestan-Knight, and Krzysztof Z. Gajos. Specialtime: Automatically detecting dialogue acts from speech to support parent-child interaction therapy. In Proceedings of the 13th EAI International Conference on Pervasive Computing Technologies for Healthcare, PervasiveHealth'19, pages 139–148, New York, NY, USA, 2019. ACM.

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