This paper uses a plausible, and hopefully non-controversial, model of speech understanding that comprises auditory processing, speech processing, and language processing, all potentially affected by the degree of attention applied and the listener’s memory ability. In a fresh approach to the construction of test batteries, the stages of the model are linked to tests designed to assess either all or selected parts of the processes involved. For two of the stages, a listener’s performance is quantified as the additional signal-to-noise ratio that he or she needs to function equivalently to his or her age peers. Subtraction of the deficits revealed by each test enables the contributions of each processing stage to a listening deficit to be quantified. As a further novel contribution, the impact of memory and attention on each test score is quantitatively allowed for, by an amount that depends on each test’s dependence on memory and attention. Attention displayed during the test is estimated from the fluctuations in performance during the test.
The paper concludes with a summary of the research that must be conducted before the structured tests can be used to quantify the extent to which different potential causes of listening difficulties are responsible for real-life difficulties in an individual child.
|Journal||Ear and hearing|
|Publication status||Accepted/In press - 6 Apr 2021|
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Munro, K., Millman, R., Lamb, W., Dawes, P., Plack, C., Stone, M., Kluk-De Kort, K., Moore, D., Morton, C., Prendergast, G., Couth, S., Schlittenlacher, J., Chilton, H., Visram, A., Dillon, H., Guest, H., Heinrich, A., Jackson, I., Littlejohn, J., Jones, L., Lough, M., Morgan, R., Perugia, E., Roughley, A., Whiston, H., Wright, C., Saunders, G., Kelly, C., Cross, H., Loughran, M. & Hoseinabadi, R.