Vocal Stress/Lie Detectors

  • Harry Hollien
Part of the Applied Psycholinguistics and Communication Disorders book series (APCD)


It is without question that law enforcement, security, intelligence and related agencies need an effective method for the detection of deception. Incidentally, “detection of deception” is the phrase used by many professionals when they mean lying. Whether a lie detector—were it to exist—would be used effectively, legally and ethically is not the focus of our concern here (however, these issues will be discussed briefly at the end of the chapter). Rather, I will stress the need for such a system and some approaches to the problem. But first, let us consider the basic issue: can lies be detected; is there such a thing as a lie response?


Vocal Tract Speech Sample Laryngeal Muscle Taboo Word Voice Analysis 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Almeida, A., Fleischmann, G., Heike, G., and Thormann, E. (1975) Short Time Statistics of the Fundamental Tone in Verbal Utterances, Eighth Internat. Cong. Phonetic Sciences, Leeds, UK.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Andreassi, J. L. (1980) Psychophysiology: Human Behavior and Physiological Response, New York, Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Anonymous (1975) Dallas: New Questions and Answers, Newsweek, 36-38 (April 28).Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Bachrach, A. J. (1979) Speech and Its Potential for Stress Monitoring, Proceed. Workshop on Monitoring Vital Signs in the Diver (C. E. G. Lundgren, Ed.), Washington, DC, Undersea Med. Soc. and Office of Naval Research, 78–93.Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Barland, G. (1973) Use of Voice Changes in Detection of Deception, J. Acoust. Soc. Amer. 54:63(A).Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Bennett, R. H., Jr. (1977) Hagoth: Fundamentals of Voice Stress Analysis, Issaquah, WA, Hagoth Corp.Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Board of Directors (1973) Resolution Concerning the Dektor Psychological Stress Evaluator (PSE 1), American Polygraph Association, Miami, Florida.Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Brenner, M. (1974) Stagefright and Steven’s Law (paper) Eastern Psychol. Assoc. Meetings (April).Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Brenner, M. and Branscomb, H. H. (1979) The Psychological Stress Evaluator, Technical Limitations Affecting Lie Detection, Polygraph 8:127–132.Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Brenner, M., Branscomb, H. H. and Schwartz, G. E. (1979) Psychological Stress Evaluator—Two Tests of a Vocal Measure, Psychophysiology 16:351–357.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Brockway, B. F., Plummer, O. B. and Lowe, B. M. (1976) The Effects of Two Types of Nursing Reassurance Upon Patient Vocal Stress Levels as Measured by a New Tool, the PSE, Nursing. Res. 25:440–446.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Brumlik, J. and Yap, C. (1970) Normal Tremor: A Comparative Study, Springfield, IL, C. C Thomas.Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Cooke, J. (1981) Scientific Truth Detector Reveals: Sinatra Told the Truth When He Denied Mob Ties, National Enquirer, 7 (March 20).Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Dick, W. (1975) Scientific Evidence Proves Ted Told the Truth About Chappaquidick, National Enquirer, 49 (July 1).Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Dick, W. (1975) Sirhan Was Hypnotized to Kill Bobby Kennedy, National Enquirer, 50 (October 27).Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    Dworken, A. (1975) Patty Hearst Not Guilty, Voice Test Proves She Was Forced to Lie, National Enquirer, 50 (September 23).Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Eisenberg, E. and Hill, T.L. (1985) Muscle Contraction and Free Energy Transduction in Biological Systems, Science 227:999–1006.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Ekman, P., Friesen, W. V. and Scherer, K. R. (1976) Body Movement and Voice Pitch in Deceptive Interaction, Semiotica 16:23–27.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    Faaborg-Anderson, K. (1957) Electromyographic Investigation of Intrinsic Laryngeal Muscles in Humans, Acta Physio. Scand. 41 (Suppl.):140.Google Scholar
  20. 20.
    Geison, L. L. (1979) Evaluation of High Stress Lying by Voice Analysis, Unpublished MA Thesis, University of Florida.Google Scholar
  21. 21.
    Haines, R. (1976) Elizabeth Ray Told the Truth about the Washington Sex Scandal; Congressman Hayes Did Not, National Enquirer, 51 (April).Google Scholar
  22. 22.
    Hart, C. (1980) Scientific Truth Detector Reveals... Laren Bacall is Lying in Her Ford TV Commercial, National Enquirer, 54 (July 29).Google Scholar
  23. 23.
    Heisse, J. W. (1976) Audio Stress Analysis—A Validation and Reliability Study of the Psychological Stress Evaluator (PSE), Proceed. Carnahan Conf., Crime Countermeasures, Lexington, KY, 5-18.Google Scholar
  24. 24.
    Hicks, J. W., Jr. (1979) An Acoustical/Temporal Analysis of Emotional Stress in Speech, Unpublished Ph.D. Dissertation, University of Florida.Google Scholar
  25. 25.
    Hocking, J. E. and Leathers, D. G. (1980) Nonverbal Indicators of Deception: A New Theoretical Perspective, Commun. Monographs 47:119–131.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. 26.
    Hollien, H. (1980) Vocal Indicators of Psychological Stress, in Forensic Psychology and Psychiatry (F. Wright, C. Bahm and R. Rieber, Eds.), New York Academy of Sciences, 47–72.Google Scholar
  27. 27.
    Hollien, H., Geison, L. L. and Hicks, J. W., Jr. (1980) Stress/Lie Studies Utilizing the PSE, paper read at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences, New Orleans, LA.Google Scholar
  28. 28.
    Hollien, H., Geisson, L. L. and Hicks, J. W. Jr., (1986) Data on Psychological Stress Evaluators and Voice Lie Detection, J. Forensic Sciences 32:405–418.Google Scholar
  29. 29.
    Horvath, F. (1982) Detecting Deception: The Promise and Reality of Voice Stress Analysis, J. Forensic Sciences 27:340–352.Google Scholar
  30. 30.
    Inbar, G. F., Eden, G. and Kaplan, M. A. (1977) Frequency Modulation in the Human Voice and the Source of Its Mediation, Proceed. Carnahan Conf., Crime Countermeasures Lexington, KY, 213-219.Google Scholar
  31. 31.
    Krauss, R. M., Geller, V, Olson, C. and Appel, W. (1977) Pitch Changes During Attempted Deception, J. Personality, Social Psychology 35:345–350.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. 32.
    Kubis, J. (1973) Comparison of Voice Analysis and Polygraph as Lie Detection Procedures, Technical Report LWL-CR-U3B70, Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD, U.S. Army Land Warfare Laboratory.Google Scholar
  33. 33.
    Kupec, E. W. (1977) Truth or the Consequences, Law Enforce. Comm. 4:12–18/42–45.Google Scholar
  34. 34.
    Leith, W R., Timmons, J. L. and Sugarman, M. D. (1977) The Use of the Psychological Stress Evaluator with Stutterers, Abstract, Conven. Amer. Speech Hearing Assoc.Google Scholar
  35. 35.
    Lippold, O. (1971) Physiological Tremor, Scientific Amer. 224:65–73.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. 36.
    Lykken, D. (1974) Psychology and the Lie Detector Industry, Amer. Psychol. 725-739.Google Scholar
  37. 37.
    Lykken, D. (1981) A Tremor in the Blood, New York, McGraw-Hill.Google Scholar
  38. 38.
    Matte, J. A. (1980) The Art and Science of the Polygraph Technique, Springfield, IL, Charles C Thomas.Google Scholar
  39. 39.
    McGlone, R. E. (1975) Tests of the Psychological Stress Evaluator (PSE) as a Lie and Stress Detector, Proceed. Carnahan Conf., Crime Countermeasures, Lexington, KY, 83-86.Google Scholar
  40. 40.
    McGlone, R. E. and Hollien, H. (1976) Partial Analysis of the Acoustic Signal of Stressed and Unstressed Speech, Proceed. Carnahan Conf., Crime Countermeasures, Lexington, KY, 19-21.Google Scholar
  41. 41.
    McGlone, R. E., Petrie, C. and Frye, J. (1974) Acoustic Analysis of Low-Risk Lies, J. Acoust. Soc. Amer. 55:S20(A).Google Scholar
  42. 42.
    Nachshon, I. and Feldman, B. (1980) Vocal Indices of Psychological Stress: A Validation Study of the Psychological Stress Evaluator, J. Police Science, Admin. 8:40–53.Google Scholar
  43. 43.
    Nagle, D. E. (1985) The Polygraph in Employment: Applications and Legal Considerations, Polygraph 14:1–33.Google Scholar
  44. 44.
    O’Toole, G. (1975) Lee Harvey Oswald was Innocent, Penthouse, 45-46:124–132.Google Scholar
  45. 45.
    Papcun, G. (1973) The Effects of Psychological Stress on Speech, paper presented to Convent. Acoust. Soc. Amer., Los Angeles, CA.Google Scholar
  46. 46.
    Reid, J. E. and Inbau, F. E. (1977) Truth and Deception: The Polygraph (“Lie Detector”) Technique (2nd Ed.), Baltimore, MD, The Williams and Wilkins Co.Google Scholar
  47. 47.
    Sawyer, C. (1983) Detecting the Unspoken Deception, Security World, 50-51 (January).Google Scholar
  48. 48.
    Shipp, T. and McGlone, R. E. (1973) Physiologic Correlates of Acoustic Correlates of Psychological Stress, J. Acoust. Soc. Amer. 53:S63(A).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. 49.
    Shipp, T. and Izdebski, K. (1981) Current Evidence for the Existence of Laryngeal Macrotremor and Microtremor, J. Forensic Sciences 26:501–505.Google Scholar
  50. 50.
    Smith, G. A. (1977) Voice Analysis for the Measurement of Anxiety, Brit. J. Med. Psychol. 50:367–373.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. 51.
    VanderCar, D. H., Greaner, J., Hibler, N., Speelberger, C. D. and Bloch, S. (1980) A Description and Analysis of the Operation and Validity of the Psychological Stress Evaluator, J. Forensic Sciences 25:174–188.Google Scholar
  52. 52.
    Weir, R. J. and Atwood, W. F. (1981) Applicant Screening Polygraph Examinations, Polygraph 10:129–142.Google Scholar
  53. 53.
    Zuckerman, M., Lubin, B., Vogel, L. and Valeruis, E. (1964) Measurement of Experimentally Induced Affects, J. Consult. Psychol. 28:418–425.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • Harry Hollien
    • 1
  1. 1.University of FloridaGainesvilleUSA

Personalised recommendations