Use of a Simultaneous Sentence Perception Test to Enhance Sensitivity to Ease of Listening The purpose of the study was to determine if a divided-attention, sentence-recall task was more sensitive to distortion of the speech signal than a conventional focused-attention task. The divided-attention task required listeners to repeat both of two sentences delivered simultaneously to the same ear. The focused-attention task required listeners to ... Research Article
Research Article  |   June 01, 2000
Use of a Simultaneous Sentence Perception Test to Enhance Sensitivity to Ease of Listening
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Carol L. Mackersie
    San Diego State University San Diego, CA
  • Arthur Boothroyd
    San Diego State University San Diego, CA
  • Tammy Prida
    San Diego State University San Diego, CA
  • Contact author: Carol Mackersie, PhD, Department of Communicative Disorders, San Diego State University, 5500 Campanile Drive, San Diego, CA 92182-1518.
    Contact author: Carol Mackersie, PhD, Department of Communicative Disorders, San Diego State University, 5500 Campanile Drive, San Diego, CA 92182-1518.×
  • Corresponding author: Email: cmackers@mail.sdsu.edu
Article Information
Hearing & Speech Perception / Acoustics / Hearing Disorders / Attention, Memory & Executive Functions / Hearing / Research Articles
Research Article   |   June 01, 2000
Use of a Simultaneous Sentence Perception Test to Enhance Sensitivity to Ease of Listening
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 2000, Vol. 43, 675-682. doi:10.1044/jslhr.4303.675
History: Received April 20, 1999 , Accepted December 9, 1999
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 2000, Vol. 43, 675-682. doi:10.1044/jslhr.4303.675
History: Received April 20, 1999; Accepted December 9, 1999

The purpose of the study was to determine if a divided-attention, sentence-recall task was more sensitive to distortion of the speech signal than a conventional focused-attention task. The divided-attention task required listeners to repeat both of two sentences delivered simultaneously to the same ear. The focused-attention task required listeners to repeat a single sentence presented to one ear in quiet or in amplitude-modulated noise (0 dB signal-to-noise ratio). Distortion was introduced by peak clipping. Eighteen listeners with normal hearing were tested under three levels of peak clipping: 0 dB, 11 dB, and 29 dB (re: waveform peak).

The effects of clipping were similar, on average, for simultaneous sentences and single sentences in noise. When data were separated by sentence length, however, the effects of clipping were found to be greater for the simultaneoussentence task, but only for the short sentences (6 words or fewer).

The simultaneous-sentence test, in its present form, is not more sensitive to the effects of clipping than is a single-sentence test in noise. Modification of the simultaneous-sentence test to include only short sentences, however, may provide greater test sensitivity than more conventional tests using single sentences in noise.

Acknowledgments
This research was supported by an American Speech-Language-Hearing Foundation New Investigator Grant awarded to the first author. The authors are grateful to Lee Philkill and Kristen Sobieck, who assisted with the data collection.
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