ERIC Number: EJ1067947
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Jun
Abstractor: As Provided
Weighting of Acoustic Cues to a Manner Distinction by Children with and without Hearing Loss
Nittrouer, Susan; Lowenstein, Joanna H.
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, v58 n3 p1077-1092 Jun 2015
Purpose: Children must develop optimal perceptual weighting strategies for processing speech in their first language. Hearing loss can interfere with that development, especially if cochlear implants are required. The three goals of this study were to measure, for children with and without hearing loss: (a) cue weighting for a manner distinction, (b) sensitivity to those cues, and (c) real-world communication functions. Method: One hundred and seven children (43 with normal hearing [NH], 17 with hearing aids [HAs], and 47 with cochlear implants [CIs]) performed several tasks: labeling of stimuli from /b?/-to-/w?/ continua varying in formant and amplitude rise time (FRT and ART), discrimination of ART, word recognition, and phonemic awareness. Results: Children with hearing loss were less attentive overall to acoustic structure than children with NH. Children with CIs, but not those with HAs, weighted FRT less and ART more than children with NH. Sensitivity could not explain cue weighting. FRT cue weighting explained significant amounts of variability in word recognition and phonemic awareness; ART cue weighting did not. Conclusion: Signal degradation inhibits access to spectral structure for children with CIs, but cannot explain their delayed development of optimal weighting strategies. Auditory training could strengthen the weighting of spectral cues for children with CIs, thus aiding spoken language acquisition.
Descriptors: Children, Hearing Impairments, Acoustics, Cues, Speech, Assistive Technology, Word Recognition, Phonemic Awareness
American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA). 10801 Rockville Pike, Rockville, MD 20852. Tel: 800-638-8255; Fax: 301-571-0457; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; Web site: http://jslhr.asha.org
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD)
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: R01 DC006237