The Development of the Mealings, Demuth, Dillon, and Buchholz Classroom Speech Perception Test Purpose Open-plan classroom styles are increasingly being adopted in Australia despite evidence that their high intrusive noise levels adversely affect learning. The aim of this study was to develop a new Australian speech perception task (the Mealings, Demuth, Dillon, and Buchholz Classroom Speech Perception Test) and use it in an ... Research Article
Research Article  |   August 01, 2015
The Development of the Mealings, Demuth, Dillon, and Buchholz Classroom Speech Perception Test
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Kiri T. Mealings
    ARC Centre for Cognition and its Disorders, Macquarie University, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
  • Katherine Demuth
    ARC Centre for Cognition and its Disorders, Macquarie University, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
  • Jörg Buchholz
    Macquarie University, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
    National Acoustics Laboratories, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
  • Harvey Dillon
    National Acoustics Laboratories, 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 Kiri T. Mealings: kiri.mealings@mq.edu.au
  • Editor: Nancy Tye-Murray
    Editor: Nancy Tye-Murray×
  • Associate Editor: Karen Kirk
    Associate Editor: Karen Kirk×
Article Information
Hearing & Speech Perception / School-Based Settings / Hearing / Research Articles
Research Article   |   August 01, 2015
The Development of the Mealings, Demuth, Dillon, and Buchholz Classroom Speech Perception Test
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, August 2015, Vol. 58, 1350-1362. doi:10.1044/2015_JSLHR-H-14-0332
History: Received November 26, 2014 , Revised March 2, 2015 , Accepted April 10, 2015
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, August 2015, Vol. 58, 1350-1362. doi:10.1044/2015_JSLHR-H-14-0332
History: Received November 26, 2014; Revised March 2, 2015; Accepted April 10, 2015
Web of Science® Times Cited: 1

Purpose Open-plan classroom styles are increasingly being adopted in Australia despite evidence that their high intrusive noise levels adversely affect learning. The aim of this study was to develop a new Australian speech perception task (the Mealings, Demuth, Dillon, and Buchholz Classroom Speech Perception Test) and use it in an open-plan classroom to assess how intrusive noise affects speech perception.

Method The first part of this article describes how the online 4-picture choice speech perception task materials were created. The second part focuses on the study involving twenty-two 5- to 6-year-old children in an open-plan classroom who completed the task while other classes engaged in quiet and noisy activities.

Results Children's performance accuracy, number of responses, and speed were lower in the noisy condition compared with the quiet condition. In addition, children's speech perception scores decreased the farther away they were seated from the loudspeaker. Overall, the children understood and were engaged in the task, demonstrating that it is an appropriate tool for assessing speech perception live in the classroom with 5- to 6-year-old children.

Conclusions The results suggest that the Mealings, Demuth, Dillon, and Buchholz Classroom Speech Perception Test is a helpful tool for assessing speech perception in classrooms and that it would be beneficial to use in future research investigating how classroom design and noise affect speech perception.

Acknowledgments
This research was supported, in part, by funding from Macquarie University, the ARC Centre for Cognition and its Disorders at Macquarie University, and Grants ARC CE110001021 and ARC FL130100014. We thank Hui Chen, Mark Seeto, Tobias Weller, Nan Xu, and the Child Language Lab at Macquarie University for their helpful assistance and feedback.
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