Improving Accent Identification and Accented Speech Recognition Under a Framework of Self-supervised Learning
Recently, self-supervised pre-training has gained success in automatic speech recognition (ASR). However, considering the difference between speech accents in real scenarios, how to identify accents and use accent features to improve ASR is still challenging. In this paper, we employ the self-supervised pre-training method for both accent identification and accented speech recognition tasks. For the former task, a standard deviation constraint loss (SDC-loss) based end-to-end (E2E) architecture is proposed to identify accents under the same language. As for accented speech recognition task, we design an accent-dependent ASR system, which can utilize additional accent input features. Furthermore, we propose a frame-level accent feature, which is extracted based on the proposed accent identification model and can be dynamically adjusted. We pre-train our models using 960 hours unlabeled LibriSpeech dataset and fine-tune them on AESRC2020 speech dataset. The experimental results show that our proposed accent-dependent ASR system is significantly ahead of the AESRC2020 baseline and achieves $6.5\%$ relative word error rate (WER) reduction compared with our accent-independent ASR system.