Attention, Memory, and Auditory Processing in 10- to 15-Year-Old Children With Listening Difficulties Purpose The aim of this study was to examine attention, memory, and auditory processing in children with reported listening difficulty in noise (LDN) despite having clinically normal hearing. Method Twenty-one children with LDN and 15 children with no listening concerns (controls) participated. The clinically normed auditory processing tests ... Research Article
Research Article  |   December 01, 2014
Attention, Memory, and Auditory Processing in 10- to 15-Year-Old Children With Listening Difficulties
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Mridula Sharma
    Macquarie University, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
    The HEARing Cooperative Research Centre, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
  • Imran Dhamani
    Macquarie University, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
    The HEARing Cooperative Research Centre, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
  • Johahn Leung
    University of Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
  • Simon Carlile
    University of Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
  • 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 Mridula Sharma: mridula.sharma@mq.edu.au
  • Imran Dhamani is now with Australian Hearing, Rockhampton, Queensland, Australia.
    Imran Dhamani is now with Australian Hearing, Rockhampton, Queensland, Australia.×
  • Editor: Nancy Tye-Murray
    Editor: Nancy Tye-Murray×
  • Associate Editor: Mitchell Sommers
    Associate Editor: Mitchell Sommers×
Article Information
Hearing & Speech Perception / Acoustics / Attention, Memory & Executive Functions / Hearing / Research Articles
Research Article   |   December 01, 2014
Attention, Memory, and Auditory Processing in 10- to 15-Year-Old Children With Listening Difficulties
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, December 2014, Vol. 57, 2308-2321. doi:10.1044/2014_JSLHR-H-13-0226
History: Received December 3, 2013 , Revised May 19, 2014 , Accepted August 20, 2014
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, December 2014, Vol. 57, 2308-2321. doi:10.1044/2014_JSLHR-H-13-0226
History: Received December 3, 2013; Revised May 19, 2014; Accepted August 20, 2014
Web of Science® Times Cited: 5

Purpose The aim of this study was to examine attention, memory, and auditory processing in children with reported listening difficulty in noise (LDN) despite having clinically normal hearing.

Method Twenty-one children with LDN and 15 children with no listening concerns (controls) participated. The clinically normed auditory processing tests included the Frequency/Pitch Pattern Test (FPT; Musiek, 2002), the Dichotic Digits Test (Musiek, 1983), the Listening in Spatialized Noise—Sentences (LiSN–S) test (Dillon, Cameron, Glyde, Wilson, & Tomlin, 2012), gap detection in noise (Baker, Jayewardene, Sayle, & Saeed, 2008), and masking level difference (MLD; Wilson, Moncrieff, Townsend, & Pillion, 2003). Also included were research-based psychoacoustic tasks, such as auditory stream segregation, localization, sinusoidal amplitude modulation (SAM), and fine structure perception. All were also evaluated on attention and memory test batteries.

Results The LDN group was significantly slower switching their auditory attention and had poorer inhibitory control. Additionally, the group mean results showed significantly poorer performance on FPT, MLD, 4-Hz SAM, and memory tests. Close inspection of the individual data revealed that only 5 participants (out of 21) in the LDN group showed significantly poor performance on FPT compared with clinical norms. Further testing revealed the frequency discrimination of these 5 children to be significantly impaired.

Conclusion Thus, the LDN group showed deficits in attention switching and inhibitory control, whereas only a subset of these participants demonstrated an additional frequency resolution deficit.

Acknowledgments
This research was financially supported by the HEARing Cooperative Research Centre (Melbourne, Victoria, Australia), established and supported under the Australian Government's Cooperative Research Centres Program. We acknowledge Bertram Scharf, Adam Reeves, Albert Bregman, Christophe Micheyl, and Suzanne Purdy for their helpful suggestions and comments.
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