Objective Measurement of Cognitive Systems during Effortful Listening

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Adults with hearing loss who report difficulty understanding speech with and without hearing aids often also report increased mental or listening effort. Although speech recognition measures are well known and have been in use for decades, measures of listening effort are relatively new and include objective measures such as working memory tasks, pupillometry, heart rate, skin conductance, and brain imaging. This purpose of this study is to evaluate an electroencephalogram (EEG)-based method to assess cognitive states associated with high frequency alpha (10-13 Hz) and theta (4-8 Hz) during effortful listening. Changes in high frequency alpha have been associated with semantic memory and cognitive demands. In addition, changes in theta have been associated with encoding information and increased listening effort. Correlations between EEG frequency recordings, self-report, and behavioral measures in speech recognition and auditory working memory tasks will be described. Results will be presented demonstrating the extent to which high frequency alpha predicts word recognition in noise performance and self-reported listening effort.


Scottsdale, AZ

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