Vocabulary facilitates speech perception in children with hearing aids

Kelsey E. Klein, Elizabeth A. Walker, Benjamin Kirby, Ryan W. McCreery

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


Purpose: We examined the effects of vocabulary, lexical Results: Children from both groups with larger vocabularies characteristics (age of acquisition and phonotactic showedbetterperformancethanchildrenwithsmaller probability), and auditory access (aided audibility and vocabularies on nonwords and late-acquired words but not daily hearing aid [HA] use) on speech perception skills in early-acquired words. Overall, children with HAs showed children with HAs. poorer performance than children with NH. Auditory access Method: Participants included 24 children with HAs and was not associated with speech perception for the children 25 children with normal hearing (NH), ages 5–12 years. with HAs. Groups were matched on age, expressive and receptive Conclusions: Children with HAs show deficits in sensitivity vocabulary, articulation, and nonverbal working memory. to phonological structure but appear to take advantage of Participants repeated monosyllabic words and nonwords in vocabulary skills to support speech perception in the same noise. Stimuli varied on age of acquisition, lexical frequency, way as children with NH. Further investigation is needed to and phonotactic probability. Performance in each condition understand the causes of the gap that exists between the was measured by the signal-to-noise ratio at which the child overall speech perception abilities of children with HAs and could accurately repeat 50% of the stimuli. children with NH.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2281-2296
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research
Issue number8
StatePublished - 2017

ASJC Scopus subject areas

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


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