Development and preliminary validation of the EASE: A tool to measure perceived singing voice function

Debra J Phyland, Julie F Pallant, Michael S Benninger, Susan L Thibeault, Ken Mark Greenwood, Julian Anderson Smith, Neil Vallance

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Objectives: Most voice self-rating tools are disease-specific measures and are not suitable for use with healthy voice users. There is a need for a tool that is sensitive to the subtleties of a singer s voice and to perceived physical changes in the singing voice mechanism as a function of load. The aim of this study was to devise and validate a scale to assess singer s perceptions of the current status of their singing voice. Methods: Ninety-five vocal health descriptors were collected from focus group interviews of singers. These were reviewed by 25 currently performing music theater (MT) singers. Based on a consensus technique, the number of descriptors was decreased to 42 items. These were administered to a sample of 284 professional MT singers using an online survey to evaluate their perception of current singing voice status. Results: Principal component analysis identified two subsets of items. Rasch analysis was used to evaluate and refine these sets of items to form two 10-item subscales. Both subscales demonstrated good overall fit to the Rasch model, no differential item functioning by sex or age, and good internal consistency reliability. The two subscales were strongly correlated and subsequent Rasch analysis supported their combination to form a single 20-item scale with good psychometric properties. Conclusions: The Evaluation of the Ability to Sing Easily (EASE) is a concise clinical tool to assess singer s perceptions of the current status of their singing voice with good measurement properties. EASE may prove a useful tool to measure changes in the singing voice as indicators of the effect of vocal load. Furthermore, it may offer a valuable means for the prediction or screening of singers at risk of developing voice disorders. ? 2013 The Voice Foundation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)454 - 462
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Voice
Volume27
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2013

Cite this

Phyland, Debra J ; Pallant, Julie F ; Benninger, Michael S ; Thibeault, Susan L ; Greenwood, Ken Mark ; Smith, Julian Anderson ; Vallance, Neil. / Development and preliminary validation of the EASE: A tool to measure perceived singing voice function. In: Journal of Voice. 2013 ; Vol. 27, No. 4. pp. 454 - 462.
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abstract = "Objectives: Most voice self-rating tools are disease-specific measures and are not suitable for use with healthy voice users. There is a need for a tool that is sensitive to the subtleties of a singer s voice and to perceived physical changes in the singing voice mechanism as a function of load. The aim of this study was to devise and validate a scale to assess singer s perceptions of the current status of their singing voice. Methods: Ninety-five vocal health descriptors were collected from focus group interviews of singers. These were reviewed by 25 currently performing music theater (MT) singers. Based on a consensus technique, the number of descriptors was decreased to 42 items. These were administered to a sample of 284 professional MT singers using an online survey to evaluate their perception of current singing voice status. Results: Principal component analysis identified two subsets of items. Rasch analysis was used to evaluate and refine these sets of items to form two 10-item subscales. Both subscales demonstrated good overall fit to the Rasch model, no differential item functioning by sex or age, and good internal consistency reliability. The two subscales were strongly correlated and subsequent Rasch analysis supported their combination to form a single 20-item scale with good psychometric properties. Conclusions: The Evaluation of the Ability to Sing Easily (EASE) is a concise clinical tool to assess singer s perceptions of the current status of their singing voice with good measurement properties. EASE may prove a useful tool to measure changes in the singing voice as indicators of the effect of vocal load. Furthermore, it may offer a valuable means for the prediction or screening of singers at risk of developing voice disorders. ? 2013 The Voice Foundation.",
author = "Phyland, {Debra J} and Pallant, {Julie F} and Benninger, {Michael S} and Thibeault, {Susan L} and Greenwood, {Ken Mark} and Smith, {Julian Anderson} and Neil Vallance",
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Development and preliminary validation of the EASE: A tool to measure perceived singing voice function. / Phyland, Debra J; Pallant, Julie F; Benninger, Michael S; Thibeault, Susan L; Greenwood, Ken Mark; Smith, Julian Anderson; Vallance, Neil.

In: Journal of Voice, Vol. 27, No. 4, 2013, p. 454 - 462.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

TY - JOUR

T1 - Development and preliminary validation of the EASE: A tool to measure perceived singing voice function

AU - Phyland, Debra J

AU - Pallant, Julie F

AU - Benninger, Michael S

AU - Thibeault, Susan L

AU - Greenwood, Ken Mark

AU - Smith, Julian Anderson

AU - Vallance, Neil

PY - 2013

Y1 - 2013

N2 - Objectives: Most voice self-rating tools are disease-specific measures and are not suitable for use with healthy voice users. There is a need for a tool that is sensitive to the subtleties of a singer s voice and to perceived physical changes in the singing voice mechanism as a function of load. The aim of this study was to devise and validate a scale to assess singer s perceptions of the current status of their singing voice. Methods: Ninety-five vocal health descriptors were collected from focus group interviews of singers. These were reviewed by 25 currently performing music theater (MT) singers. Based on a consensus technique, the number of descriptors was decreased to 42 items. These were administered to a sample of 284 professional MT singers using an online survey to evaluate their perception of current singing voice status. Results: Principal component analysis identified two subsets of items. Rasch analysis was used to evaluate and refine these sets of items to form two 10-item subscales. Both subscales demonstrated good overall fit to the Rasch model, no differential item functioning by sex or age, and good internal consistency reliability. The two subscales were strongly correlated and subsequent Rasch analysis supported their combination to form a single 20-item scale with good psychometric properties. Conclusions: The Evaluation of the Ability to Sing Easily (EASE) is a concise clinical tool to assess singer s perceptions of the current status of their singing voice with good measurement properties. EASE may prove a useful tool to measure changes in the singing voice as indicators of the effect of vocal load. Furthermore, it may offer a valuable means for the prediction or screening of singers at risk of developing voice disorders. ? 2013 The Voice Foundation.

AB - Objectives: Most voice self-rating tools are disease-specific measures and are not suitable for use with healthy voice users. There is a need for a tool that is sensitive to the subtleties of a singer s voice and to perceived physical changes in the singing voice mechanism as a function of load. The aim of this study was to devise and validate a scale to assess singer s perceptions of the current status of their singing voice. Methods: Ninety-five vocal health descriptors were collected from focus group interviews of singers. These were reviewed by 25 currently performing music theater (MT) singers. Based on a consensus technique, the number of descriptors was decreased to 42 items. These were administered to a sample of 284 professional MT singers using an online survey to evaluate their perception of current singing voice status. Results: Principal component analysis identified two subsets of items. Rasch analysis was used to evaluate and refine these sets of items to form two 10-item subscales. Both subscales demonstrated good overall fit to the Rasch model, no differential item functioning by sex or age, and good internal consistency reliability. The two subscales were strongly correlated and subsequent Rasch analysis supported their combination to form a single 20-item scale with good psychometric properties. Conclusions: The Evaluation of the Ability to Sing Easily (EASE) is a concise clinical tool to assess singer s perceptions of the current status of their singing voice with good measurement properties. EASE may prove a useful tool to measure changes in the singing voice as indicators of the effect of vocal load. Furthermore, it may offer a valuable means for the prediction or screening of singers at risk of developing voice disorders. ? 2013 The Voice Foundation.

UR - http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23583205

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DO - 10.1016/j.jvoice.2013.01.019

M3 - Article

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EP - 462

JO - Journal of Voice

JF - Journal of Voice

SN - 0892-1997

IS - 4

ER -