Perceptual Organization of Sequential Stimuli in Listeners With Cochlear Hearing Loss The perceptual organization of sequential stimuli presumably depends in part on the fidelity with which acoustic cues are encoded in the auditory system. The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of cochlear hearing loss on two measures of sequential processing that rely on spectro-temporal information. The results ... Research Article
Research Article  |   December 01, 1996
Perceptual Organization of Sequential Stimuli in Listeners With Cochlear Hearing Loss
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • J. H. Grose
    Division of Otolaryngology/Head & Neck Surgery University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • J. W. Hall, III
    Division of Otolaryngology/Head & Neck Surgery University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • Contact author: John H. Grose, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Division of Otolaryngology/Head & Neck Surgery, CB# 7070, Bumett-Womack Clinical Sciences, Chapel Hill, NC 27599-7070.
    Contact author: John H. Grose, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Division of Otolaryngology/Head & Neck Surgery, CB# 7070, Bumett-Womack Clinical Sciences, Chapel Hill, NC 27599-7070.×
Article Information
Hearing & Speech Perception / Acoustics / Hearing Disorders / Hearing / Research Articles
Research Article   |   December 01, 1996
Perceptual Organization of Sequential Stimuli in Listeners With Cochlear Hearing Loss
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, December 1996, Vol. 39, 1149-1158. doi:10.1044/jshr.3906.1149
History: Received January 19, 1996 , Accepted August 20, 1996
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, December 1996, Vol. 39, 1149-1158. doi:10.1044/jshr.3906.1149
History: Received January 19, 1996; Accepted August 20, 1996

The perceptual organization of sequential stimuli presumably depends in part on the fidelity with which acoustic cues are encoded in the auditory system. The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of cochlear hearing loss on two measures of sequential processing that rely on spectro-temporal information. The results of a gap detection/discrimination task indicated that listeners with cochlear hearing loss exhibited particular difficulty discriminating gaps between tonal markers that were disparate in frequency. Performance improved when the disparate tones were embedded into a sequence of alternating low- and high-frequency tones that may have facilitated the perceptual parsing of the stimuli into separate auditory streams. However, performance for listeners with cochlear hearing loss was generally poorer than that of normal-hearing listeners and did not appear to be related to threshold in quiet or to frequency selectivity. The results of a melody recognition task that required a target melody to be "heard out" from simultaneous competing melodies also indicated generally poorer performance on the part of the listeners with hearing loss, although the pattern of results across all listeners was highly idiosyncratic. It was concluded that cochlear hearing loss deleteriously affects the processes underlying perceptual organization of sequential stimuli. In particular, perceptual organization in the presence of cochlear hearing loss appears to require a greater frequency separation between presumed auditory streams in comparison to normal-hearing listeners.

Acknowledgments
This research was supported by Grant# R01 DC01507 from the NIDCD. Portions of the work were presented at the 126th Meeting of the Acoustical Society of America, Denver, CO, Oct. 4–11, 1993. The helpful comments of Peter Fitzgibbons, Marjorie Leek, and an anonymous reviewer on a previous version of this paper are gratefully acknowledged.
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