Perceptual Learning of Acoustic Noise by Individuals With Dyslexia Purpose A phonological deficit is thought to affect most individuals with developmental dyslexia. The present study addresses whether the phonological deficit is caused by difficulties with perceptual learning of fine acoustic details. Method A demanding test of nonverbal auditory memory, “noise learning,” was administered to both adults with dyslexia ... Research Article
Research Article  |   June 01, 2014
Perceptual Learning of Acoustic Noise by Individuals With Dyslexia
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Trevor R. Agus
    Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Paris, France
    Laboratoire des Systèmes Perceptifs, Paris, France
    École Normale Supérieure, Paris, France
  • Amaia Carrión-Castillo
    Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Paris, France
    École Normale Supérieure, Paris, France
    Laboratoire de Sciences Cognitives et Psycholinguistique, Paris, France
    École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales, Paris, France
  • Daniel Pressnitzer
    Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Paris, France
    Laboratoire des Systèmes Perceptifs, Paris, France
    École Normale Supérieure, Paris, France
  • Franck Ramus
    Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Paris, France
    École Normale Supérieure, Paris, France
    Laboratoire de Sciences Cognitives et Psycholinguistique, Paris, France
    École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales, Paris, France
  • Disclosure: The authors have declared that no competing interests existed at the time of publication.
    Disclosure: The authors have declared that no competing interests existed at the time of publication.×
  • Correspondence to Trevor R. Agus, who is now affiliated with Queen’s University, Belfast, United Kingdom: t.agus@qub.ac.uk
  • Editor: Craig Champlin
    Editor: Craig Champlin×
  • Associate Editor: Bharath Chandrasekaran
    Associate Editor: Bharath Chandrasekaran×
Article Information
Hearing & Speech Perception / Acoustics / Language Disorders / Reading & Writing Disorders / Attention, Memory & Executive Functions / Hearing / Research Articles
Research Article   |   June 01, 2014
Perceptual Learning of Acoustic Noise by Individuals With Dyslexia
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 2014, Vol. 57, 1069-1077. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2013/13-0020)
History: Received January 24, 2013 , Revised July 11, 2013 , Accepted August 26, 2013
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 2014, Vol. 57, 1069-1077. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2013/13-0020)
History: Received January 24, 2013; Revised July 11, 2013; Accepted August 26, 2013
Web of Science® Times Cited: 2

Purpose A phonological deficit is thought to affect most individuals with developmental dyslexia. The present study addresses whether the phonological deficit is caused by difficulties with perceptual learning of fine acoustic details.

Method A demanding test of nonverbal auditory memory, “noise learning,” was administered to both adults with dyslexia and control adult participants. On each trial, listeners had to decide whether a stimulus was a 1-s noise token or 2 abutting presentations of the same 0.5-s noise token (repeated noise). Without the listener's knowledge, the exact same noise tokens were presented over many trials. An improved ability to perform the task for such “reference” noises reflects learning of their acoustic details.

Results Listeners with dyslexia did not differ from controls in any aspect of the task, qualitatively or quantitatively. They required the same amount of training to achieve discrimination of repeated from nonrepeated noises, and they learned the reference noises as often and as rapidly as the control group. However, they did show all the hallmarks of dyslexia, including a well-characterized phonological deficit.

Conclusion The data did not support the hypothesis that deficits in basic auditory processing or nonverbal learning and memory are the cause of the phonological deficit in dyslexia.

Acknowledgments
This work was supported by the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS) and the Agence Nationale de la Recherche (Grants ANR-06-NEUR-022-01, ANR-06-NEURO-019-01, ANR-08-BLAN-0167-01, ANR-2010-BLAN-1906, ANR-10-LABX-0087 IEC, ANR-11-BSV4-014-01, and ANR-10-IDEX-0001-02 PSL*). We thank Nadège Villiermet, Sanaa Moukawane, Amélie Lachat, and Mathilde Dausse for their contribution to data collection.
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