Effects of noise on speech recognition and listening effort in children with normal hearing and children with mild bilateral or unilateral hearing loss

Dawna Lewis, Kendra Schmid, Samantha O’Leary, Jody Spalding, Elizabeth Heinrichs-Graham, Robin High

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

20 Scopus citations

Abstract

Purpose: This study examined the effects of stimulus type and hearing status on speech recognition and listening effort in children with normal hearing (NH) and children with mild bilateral hearing loss (MBHL) or unilateral hearing loss (UHL). Method: Children (5–12 years of age) with NH (Experiment 1) and children (8–12 years of age) with MBHL, UHL, or NH (Experiment 2) performed consonant identification and word and sentence recognition in background noise. Percentage correct performance and verbal response time (VRT) were assessed (onset time, total duration). Results: In general, speech recognition improved as signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) increased both for children with NH and children with MBHL or UHL. The groups did not differ on measures of VRT. Onset times were longer for incorrect than for correct responses. For correct responses only, there was a general increase in VRT with decreasing SNR. Conclusions: Findings indicate poorer sentence recognition in children with NH and MBHL or UHL as SNR decreases. VRT results suggest that greater effort was expended when processing stimuli that were incorrectly identified. Increasing VRT with decreasing SNR for correct responses also supports greater effort in poorer acoustic conditions. The absence of significant hearing status differences suggests that VRT was not differentially affected by MBHL, UHL, or NH for children in this study.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1218-1232
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research
Volume59
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Linguistics and Language
  • Speech and Hearing

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