Researchers from UCLA’s Voice Center for Medicine and the Arts explored how the 2016 Presidential candidates vary their vocal pitch in variety of settings. Regardless of gender or political affiliation, Dr. Rosario Signorello, a postdoctoral researcher, found that these candidates varied their vocalizations in very predictable ways based on the goals they were trying to achieve. When trying to maximize persuasiveness and charisma, the candidates used a large pitch range inclusive of low and high frequencies. However, when these candidates were trying to demonstrate dominance and control, they restricted their vocal range to low and medium frequencies.
As public speakers and communicators, we all can benefit by employing different “vocal profiles” to accomplish specific speaking goals (e.g., persuasion versus instilling confidence). The question them arises…how do we develop our vocal profiles? Thankfully, technology can help. Many apps exist to assist us not only in recognizing and developing our vocal range, but also our rate and use of filler words (e.g., “um’s” and “uh’s”). Here are a list of three useful apps:
I encourage you to explore these apps as a way to become more comfortable with your vocal range and to accomplish your speaking goals.