Become a research participant!
As part of LAOLA, we are looking for speech-language pathologists as well as former and current voice patients in Germany who would like to take part in interviews, online surveys, video shoots, practical tests (as a participant, you are not expected to participate in every part of this data gathering process). No previous technical knowledge required. The LAOLA demonstrator should be usable for all interested users. Participants with little or no experience with digital apps are very welcome. Data protection is a top priority in all studies. As a participant, you contribute to the success of the LAOLA project. Contact us for more information and if you would like to become a test participant.
Voice disorders cause 636 million euros in costs for voice therapy in Germany
29.9 % lifetime prevalence in Germany
Source: Jung, und Delb (2018). Systematisches Review und Metaanalyse zur konservativen Behandlung von funktionellen Stimmstörungen.
The state of the art
Functional voice therapy is an evidence-based and practically proven method of treating voice disorders. Based on functional voice therapy, University Clinic for Visceral Surgery at Carl von Ossietzky University of Oldenburg and the working group “Assistance Systems and Medical Technology” developed an app for speech-language pathologists and patients: OLA, the Oldenburg speech therapy app.OLA was tailored towards thyroid surgery patients who need to train specific vocal aspects as part of their recovery process. In a study, the OLA researchers found positive effects on users of the app. The OLA researchers also noted a high level of acceptance among users. These results form the basis for LAOLA, which aims to offer even more digital training options to a broader target group.
Our vision: Voice training with a mobile phone in hand
LAOLA is intended as a digital homework assistant for patients. It enables them to record videos of their training sessions which the app will then evaluate. We want to give patients access to important analytic data about training frequencies, durations of their exercises, and scores. Based on this information, users will receive direct feedback on their own exercises. In this way, they can train their voice more effectively and stay motivated while practicing at home.
Innovative therapy design
We are researching new technological methods for detecting and analyzing mouth movements and posture. For the first time, pathologists will be able to access extensive objective data on voice exercises. LAOLA opens up completely new decision-making processes in therapy design. It will also carry out valuable speech therapy analyses in the field of voice recognition, such as determining the roughness or breathiness of the voice.
Machine learning and data protection
In project LAOLA, we are exploring potential benefits of machine learning and artificial intelligence for speech therapy. An AI will learn to assess the therapy progress of individual patients and provide meaningful assistance when it comes to selecting therapy videos or planning entire exercise courses. At the same time, we give top priority to data protection and patient safety. Sensitive information is safe from access by unauthorized persons.
Digital support for patients and speech-language pathologists
LAOLA is not intended to replace direct exchange with one’s own pathologists, of course. However, it could serve as an excellent supplement to therapeutic communication. With the help of AI, speech-language pathologists can more precisely tailor training to their patients’ actual needs. They will be able to objectively review the course of therapy. Patients, on the other hand, can be encouraged by LAOLA to complete their self-training more regularly and in a more controlled manner – always as a Complement to regular therapy.
In LAOLA, academic scholars and the private sector experts work closely together. We combine expertise in the fields of speech therapy research, teaching and education, therapeutic practice and medical technology as well as basic technological research.
+ 49 (0) 4222 – 805850 0
Ascora GmbH Birkenallee43, 27777 Ganderkesee