An overview of the effect of stimulus type, age and dominance on the ear binaural integration
Objective: The aim of the present study is to assess stimulus type, age and ear dominance effect on thebinaural integration capacity of school-aged children using dichotic listening tests. Methods: Thirty-eightFrench speaking children with normal hearing sensitivity of six, eight, nine and twelve years old (28participated in Jutras & al., 2012’ study) performed the four subtests of the newly developed test in French– Écoute dichotique de chiffres (EDC), under earphones at normal conversational level. Three subtests werecomposed respectively of one, two and three different digit pairs. The forth version comprised fourdifferent digits, but only the second and third were heard simultaneously. The participants were alsoassessed with a word dichotic listening test, having the same structure than the EDC forth version, namelythe French adaptation of the Staggered Spondaic Word test (Rudmin & Normandin, 1983). Results: Datafrom the 28 participants in Jutras & al. (2012)’ study were included in the analysis in addition of the datafrom the ten children of the present study. Results on the dichotic listening tests were significantly higherwith digits than with words and improved as a function of age. Also, in general, participants obtainedhigher performance when the stimuli were presented in the right ear then when it was sent to the left ear.Conclusion: The dichotic digit listening test in French is sensitive to stimulus type and to the age of theparticipants. Results showed also a bias towards the ear tested.
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