The Effect of Remote Masking on the Reception of Speech by Young School-Age Children Purpose Psychoacoustic data indicate that infants and children are less likely than adults to focus on a spectral region containing an anticipated signal and are more susceptible to remote masking of a signal. These detection tasks suggest that infants and children, unlike adults, do not listen selectively. However, less is ... Research Note
Research Note  |   February 15, 2018
The Effect of Remote Masking on the Reception of Speech by Young School-Age Children
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Carla L. Youngdahl
    Department of Speech and Hearing Science, The Ohio State University, Columbus
  • Eric W. Healy
    Department of Speech and Hearing Science, The Ohio State University, Columbus
  • Sarah E. Yoho
    Department of Speech and Hearing Science, The Ohio State University, Columbus
  • Frédéric Apoux
    Department of Speech and Hearing Science, The Ohio State University, Columbus
  • Rachael Frush Holt
    Department of Speech and Hearing Science, The Ohio State University, Columbus
  • 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 Carla L. Youngdahl: cyoungdahl@saintmarys.edu, and Eric W. Healy: healy.66@osu.edu
  • Carla L. Youngdahl is now at the Department of Communicative Sciences and Disorders, Saint Mary's College, University of Notre Dame, IN.
    Carla L. Youngdahl is now at the Department of Communicative Sciences and Disorders, Saint Mary's College, University of Notre Dame, IN.×
  • Sarah E. Yoho is now at the Department of Communicative Disorders & Deaf Education, Utah State University, Logan.
    Sarah E. Yoho is now at the Department of Communicative Disorders & Deaf Education, Utah State University, Logan.×
  • Frédéric Apoux is now at the Department of Otolaryngology–Head & Neck Surgery, The Ohio State University, Columbus.
    Frédéric Apoux is now at the Department of Otolaryngology–Head & Neck Surgery, The Ohio State University, Columbus.×
  • Editor-in-Chief: Frederick (Erick) Gallun
    Editor-in-Chief: Frederick (Erick) Gallun×
  • Editor: Jennifer Lentz
    Editor: Jennifer Lentz×
Article Information
Hearing & Speech Perception / Hearing / Research Notes
Research Note   |   February 15, 2018
The Effect of Remote Masking on the Reception of Speech by Young School-Age Children
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, February 2018, Vol. 61, 420-427. doi:10.1044/2017_JSLHR-H-17-0118
History: Received April 3, 2017 , Revised September 1, 2017 , Accepted September 7, 2017
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, February 2018, Vol. 61, 420-427. doi:10.1044/2017_JSLHR-H-17-0118
History: Received April 3, 2017; Revised September 1, 2017; Accepted September 7, 2017

Purpose Psychoacoustic data indicate that infants and children are less likely than adults to focus on a spectral region containing an anticipated signal and are more susceptible to remote masking of a signal. These detection tasks suggest that infants and children, unlike adults, do not listen selectively. However, less is known about children's ability to listen selectively during speech recognition. Accordingly, the current study examines remote masking during speech recognition in children and adults.

Method Adults and 7- and 5-year-old children performed sentence recognition in the presence of various spectrally remote maskers. Intelligibility was determined for each remote-masker condition, and performance was compared across age groups.

Results It was found that speech recognition for 5-year-olds was reduced in the presence of spectrally remote noise, whereas the maskers had no effect on the 7-year-olds or adults. Maskers of different bandwidth and remoteness had similar effects.

Conclusions In accord with psychoacoustic data, young children do not appear to focus on a spectral region of interest and ignore other regions during speech recognition. This tendency may help account for their typically poorer speech perception in noise. This study also appears to capture an important developmental stage, during which a substantial refinement in spectral listening occurs.

Acknowledgments
This work formed a portion of a dissertation submitted by the first author, under the direction of the second author, in partial fulfillment of degree requirements for the PhD in Speech and Hearing Science. This research was supported in part through grants from the National Institutes of Health (NIDCD R01DC008594 and R01 DC015521 to author Eric W. Healy and R01 DC014956 to author Rachael Frush Holt). Additional funding came from The Ohio State University Alumni Grants for Graduate Research and Scholarship Program to author Carla L. Youngdahl. Portions were presented at the 2015 Annual American Speech-Language-Hearing Association Convention and the 169th Meeting of the Acoustical Society of America. The authors thank Brittney Carter for assistance in collecting the data and Jordan Vasko for conducting the excitation pattern calculations and assisting with manuscript preparation.
Order a Subscription
Pay Per View
Entire Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research content & archive
24-hour access
This Article
24-hour access