Consistency of Sentence Intelligibility Across Difficult Listening Situations Purpose The extent to which a sentence retains its level of spoken intelligibility relative to other sentences in a list under a variety of difficult listening situations was examined. Method The strength of this sentence effect was studied using the Central Institute for the Deaf Everyday Speech sentences ... Research Article
Research Article  |   August 01, 2006
Consistency of Sentence Intelligibility Across Difficult Listening Situations
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Eric W. Healy
    Arnold School of Public Health, University of South Carolina, Columbia
  • Allen A. Montgomery
    Arnold School of Public Health, University of South Carolina, Columbia
  • Contact author: Eric W. Healy, Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders, Arnold School of Public Health, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC 29208. E-mail: ewh@sc.edu
Article Information
Speech, Voice & Prosodic Disorders / Hearing / Research Articles
Research Article   |   August 01, 2006
Consistency of Sentence Intelligibility Across Difficult Listening Situations
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, August 2006, Vol. 49, 823-834. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2006/058)
History: Received April 19, 2005 , Accepted December 22, 2005
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, August 2006, Vol. 49, 823-834. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2006/058)
History: Received April 19, 2005; Accepted December 22, 2005
Web of Science® Times Cited: 2

Purpose The extent to which a sentence retains its level of spoken intelligibility relative to other sentences in a list under a variety of difficult listening situations was examined.

Method The strength of this sentence effect was studied using the Central Institute for the Deaf Everyday Speech sentences and both generalizability analysis (Experiments 1 and 2) and correlation (Analyses 1 and 2).

Results Experiments 1 and 2 indicated the presence of a prominent sentence effect (substantial variance accounted for) across a large range of group mean intelligibilities (Experiment 1) and different spectral contents (Experiment 2). In Correlation Analysis 1, individual sentence scores were found to be correlated across listeners in each group producing widely ranging levels of performance. The sentence effect accounted for over half of the variance between listener-ability groups. In Correlation Analysis 2, correlations accounted for an average of 42% of the variance across a variety of listening conditions. However, when the auditory data were compared to speech-reading data, the cross-modal correlations were quite low.

Conclusions The stability of relative sentence intelligibility (the sentence effect) appears across a wide range of mean intelligibilities, across different spectral compositions, and across different listener performance levels, but not across sensory modalities.

Acknowledgments
This work was supported in part by Grant DC05795 from the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders. We thank Marilyn Demorest for helpful comments and Robert Hinkle for providing the speech-reading data used in Correlation Analysis 2.
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