Canadian Journal of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology

Hearing Aid Noise Reduction Algorithms and the Acquisition of Novel Speech Contrasts by Young Children

 
Author(s) Christine Turgeon
Michele Dostaler
Asha Yathiraj
André Marcoux
Volume 33
Number 3
Year 2009
Page(s) 140-145
Language English
Category
Keywords Digital
Noise
Reduction
DNR
language
acquisition
cross
speech recognition
discrimination
Signal-to-Noise
Ratio
SNR
audibility
hearing
aids
Abstract A previous study by the authors concluded that digital noise reduction (DNR) does not have an infl uence on the acquisition of a second language in adults. On the basis of results from adult subjects, it was inferred that DNR is not likely to infl uence language acquisition in pre-verbal infants. The present study serves as an update to determine whether the tasks being modeled could be conducted with younger participants of 4- and 5-years of age, and whether similar results would be found. Two groups of normal-hearing, monolingual English-speaking children were presented with noise-embedded Hindi speech contrasts that were diffi cult to discriminate. One group listened to both speech items and noise processed with DNR while the other group listened to unprocessed speech in noise. To ensure task appropriateness, these results were also compared to measures from a third group composed of Hindi-speaking children of the same age. Results indicated that Hindi-speaking children performed better than English-speaking children, confi rming age-appropriateness of the cross-language task, but that DNR did not enhance nor impair the acquisition of novel speech contrasts by young listeners.

Une étude précédente des mêmes auteurs a mené à la conclusion que la réduction du bruit numérique n’a pas d’infl uence sur l’acquisition d’une langue seconde chez les adultes. À partir de résultats obtenus auprès de sujets adultes, on a postulé que la réduction du bruit numérique n’était pas susceptible d’infl uencer l’acquisition d’une langue chez les jeunes enfants à l’étape préverbale. La présente étude se veut un suivi pour déterminer si les tâches démontrées pourraient servir avec de jeunes participants de 4 et 5 ans et si l’on arriverait à des résultats semblables. Dans le bruit, on a présenté à deux groupes d’enfants monolingues anglophones ayant une acuité auditive normale des sons opposés en hindi diffi ciles à distinguer. Un groupe a écouté les deux sons et le bruit transformés avec la réduction du bruit numérique, tandis que l’autre groupe a entendu les sons sans transformation. Pour assurer la pertinence de la tâche, on a aussi comparé les résultats à des mesures d’un troisième groupe d’enfants parlant le hindi et ayant le même âge. Les résultats montrent que les enfants parlant le hindi ont mieux réussi que les enfants anglophones, ce qui confi rme la pertinence de la tâche inter-linguistique pour l’âge, mais la réduction du bruit numérique n’a pas amélioré ni freiné l’acquisition de contrastes de sons nouveaux chez les jeunes.
Record ID 985
Link http://cjslpa.ca/files/2009_CJSLPA_Vol_33/No_03_113-160/Turgeon_CJSLPA_2009.pdf
 
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