Automated Spoken English Test




Communication is one of the most important skills that any organization would want their employees to have. The popularity of voice-BPOs has lead to a massive demand for skilled English speakers. While India has abundance of people with English speaking Skills, the level of expertise needed in conversational English to be able to work in voice BPOs is not easily available still.

MeritTrac has been at the forefront of creating and developing tools to objectively measure English skills for varied requirements ranging from speaking, to writing and listening based on industry requirements.

SpeechTrac – MeritTrac’s automated spoken English assessment framework combines MeritTrac’s knowledge and expertise in spoken English evaluation assessment and speech recognition technology provided by Carnegie Speech of the US, coupled with an Interactive Voice Response (IVR) system for performance reporting to evaluate the Spoken English skills of non-native speakers of English on independent parameters without human intervention. It uses speech recognition and pinpointing technology to listen to a user’s speech and to pinpoint exactly what was correct and incorrect in the sound, rhythm and pitch of the speech. Thus it ensures highly objective, consistent and reliable evaluations and repeatable results. It does NOT look for a native or advanced proficiency in Spoken English abilities but focuses on identifying ‘trainable’, competent Spoken English skills.

The solution offered uses an IVR interface in order to administer the assessment over any telephone line. The interface is tuned to ensure that background noise levels are filtered out so that the tool could be used in most recruitment locations as opposed to other tools that need complete isolation.

A significant amount of customization has been carried out to ensure that the tool has its internal benchmarks based on neutral Indian speakers of English. Voice clips of Indian speakers covering all aspects mentioned above have been used to train the audio analyzer to benchmark phoneme sounds. All the clips are validated by a set of trainers from the BPO industry.

SpeechTrac assesses a candidates spoken English on four parameters – Pronunciation, Grammar, Vocabulary, Fluency. The test can be administered in 10 – 15 minutes.

SpeechTrac generates detailed phonem-wise reports that supports recruitment team to take the selection decisions and the training team to generate detailed training information.

Following are the benefits of using SpeechTrac:

• Neutral from ‘Foreign Bias’. These tests are designed keeping native test takers in context
• Simple reports for quick interpretation and decisions
• Designed for specific purpose and roles
• Viable for mass hiring