Gap Detection in School-Age Children and Adults: Effects of Inherent Envelope Modulation and the Availability of Cues Across Frequency Purpose The present study evaluated the effects of inherent envelope modulation and the availability of cues across frequency on behavioral gap detection with noise-band stimuli in school-age children. Method Listeners were 34 normal-hearing children (ages 5.2–15.6 years) and 12 normal-hearing adults (ages 18.5–28.8 years). Stimuli were continuous bands of ... Research Article
Research Article  |   June 01, 2014
Gap Detection in School-Age Children and Adults: Effects of Inherent Envelope Modulation and the Availability of Cues Across Frequency
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Emily Buss
    University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • Joseph W. Hall, III
    University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • Heather Porter
    University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • John H. Grose
    University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • 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 Emily Buss: ebuss@med.unc.edu
  • Editor: Craig Champlin
    Editor: Craig Champlin×
  • Associate Editor: Eric Healy
    Associate Editor: Eric Healy×
Article Information
Hearing & Speech Perception / Acoustics / Hearing / Research Articles
Research Article   |   June 01, 2014
Gap Detection in School-Age Children and Adults: Effects of Inherent Envelope Modulation and the Availability of Cues Across Frequency
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 2014, Vol. 57, 1098-1107. doi:10.1044/2014_JSLHR-H-13-0132
History: Received May 22, 2013 , Revised September 19, 2013 , Accepted October 10, 2013
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 2014, Vol. 57, 1098-1107. doi:10.1044/2014_JSLHR-H-13-0132
History: Received May 22, 2013; Revised September 19, 2013; Accepted October 10, 2013
Web of Science® Times Cited: 3

Purpose The present study evaluated the effects of inherent envelope modulation and the availability of cues across frequency on behavioral gap detection with noise-band stimuli in school-age children.

Method Listeners were 34 normal-hearing children (ages 5.2–15.6 years) and 12 normal-hearing adults (ages 18.5–28.8 years). Stimuli were continuous bands of noise centered on 2000 Hz, either 1000- or 25-Hz wide. In addition to Gaussian noise at these bandwidths, there were conditions using 25-Hz-wide noise bands modified to either accentuate or minimize inherent envelope modulation (staccato and low-fluctuation noise, respectively).

Results Within the 25-Hz-wide conditions, adults' gap detection thresholds were highest in the staccato, lower in the Gaussian, and lowest in the low-fluctuation noise. Similar trends were evident in children's thresholds, although inherent envelope modulation had a smaller effect on children than on adults. Whereas adults' thresholds were comparable for the 1000-Hz-wide Gaussian and 25-Hz-wide low-fluctuation stimulus, children's performance converged on adults' performance at a younger age for the 1000-Hz-wide Gaussian stimulus.

Conclusions Results are consistent with the idea that children are less susceptible to the disruptive effects of inherent envelope modulation than adults when detecting a gap in a narrow-band noise. Further, the ability to use spectrally distributed gap detection cues appears to mature relatively early in childhood.

Acknowledgment
This work was supported by National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders Grant R01 DC000397 to Joseph W. Hall III.
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