Accuracy of Speech Intelligibility Index Predictions for Noise-Masked Young Listeners With Normal Hearing and for Elderly Listeners With Hearing Impairment This study examined whether the accuracy of Speech Intelligibility Index (SII) predictions is affected by subject age when between-groups auditory sensitivity differences are controlled. SII predictive accuracy was assessed for elderly listeners with hearing impairment (EHI) and for young noise-masked listeners with normal hearing (NMN). SII predictive accuracy was poorer ... Research Article
Research Article  |   February 01, 1995
Accuracy of Speech Intelligibility Index Predictions for Noise-Masked Young Listeners With Normal Hearing and for Elderly Listeners With Hearing Impairment
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Sarah E. Hargus
    University of Maryland College Park
  • Sandra Gordon-Salant
    University of Maryland College Park
  • Currently affiliated with the Medical University of South Carolina.
    Currently affiliated with the Medical University of South Carolina.×
Article Information
Speech, Voice & Prosodic Disorders / Hearing & Speech Perception / Acoustics / Hearing Disorders / Special Populations / Older Adults & Aging / Hearing / Research Articles
Research Article   |   February 01, 1995
Accuracy of Speech Intelligibility Index Predictions for Noise-Masked Young Listeners With Normal Hearing and for Elderly Listeners With Hearing Impairment
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, February 1995, Vol. 38, 234-243. doi:10.1044/jshr.3801.234
History: Received April 22, 1994 , Accepted September 14, 1994
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, February 1995, Vol. 38, 234-243. doi:10.1044/jshr.3801.234
History: Received April 22, 1994; Accepted September 14, 1994

This study examined whether the accuracy of Speech Intelligibility Index (SII) predictions is affected by subject age when between-groups auditory sensitivity differences are controlled. SII predictive accuracy was assessed for elderly listeners with hearing impairment (EHI) and for young noise-masked listeners with normal hearing (NMN). SII predictive accuracy was poorer for the EHI subjects than for the NMN subjects across a range of test conditions and stimuli. Speech test redundancy, speech presentation level, signal-to-babble ratio, and babble level also affected SII predictive accuracy. The results suggest that the speech recognition difficulties experienced in noise by elderly listeners do not result solely from reduced auditory sensitivity.

Acknowledgments
This research was supported in part by a grant from the National Institute on Aging awarded to the second author. The authors thank Chaslav Pavlovic for providing a draft of the proposed SII calculation procedures and a copy of the computer program for calculating the SII. We are also grateful to Peter Fitzgibbons, Patricia Balfour, and Grace Yeni-Komshian for their assistance and advice regarding research design, instrumentation, and statistical analysis, and to Judy Dubno, Jayne Ahlstrom, Lois Matthews, Lenore Holte, and two anonymous reviewers for their helpful comments on earlier drafts of this manuscript. Finally, we thank the subjects who participated in this experiment for their generous contributions of time and effort.
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