An Item-Difficulty Based Speech Discrimination Test In an attempt to improve the differentiating ability of monosyllabic speech discrimination tests, two equivalent, 25-word test recordings with rectilinear distributions of item difficulty were constructed from W-22 Hirsh recordings. These lists and selected half lists of the standard W-22 recordings were then presented to 40 ears of listeners with ... Research Article
Research Article  |   December 01, 1971
An Item-Difficulty Based Speech Discrimination Test
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Robert H. Margolis
    Kent State University, Kent, Ohio
  • Joseph P. Millin
    Kent State University, Kent, Ohio
Article Information
Research Articles
Research Article   |   December 01, 1971
An Item-Difficulty Based Speech Discrimination Test
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, December 1971, Vol. 14, 865-873. doi:10.1044/jshr.1404.865
History: Received October 10, 1969
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, December 1971, Vol. 14, 865-873. doi:10.1044/jshr.1404.865
History: Received October 10, 1969

In an attempt to improve the differentiating ability of monosyllabic speech discrimination tests, two equivalent, 25-word test recordings with rectilinear distributions of item difficulty were constructed from W-22 Hirsh recordings. These lists and selected half lists of the standard W-22 recordings were then presented to 40 ears of listeners with losses ranging in severity from -10 dB to 60 dB (SRT) at sensation levels of 20, 30, 40, and 50 dB. Scores obtained with the new lists describe a less skewed frequency distribution than those obtained with the W-22 half lists. The new recordings were also more successful in differentiating between subjects with varying levels of sensorineural hearing losses, particularly between normal-hearing listeners and listeners with mild loss, who are usually poorly differentiated by W-22 tests. This was accomplished without resorting to deliberate distortion of stimulus words. These new recordings appear to have clinical usefulness in their ability to more accurately reflect differences in discrimination ability among listeners and particularly in their ability to reveal reduced discrimination in mild sensorineural hearing loss.

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