Poster Session B, Sunday, March 24, 8:00 – 10:00 am, Pacific Concourse
The Effect of Noise on the Selective Attention
Emina Alickovic1,2, Carina Graversen1, Dorothea Wendt1,3, Patrycja Książek1, Renskje Hietkamp1, Thomas Lunner1,3,4,5; 1Eriksholm Research Center, Oticon A/S, Denmark, 2Department of Electrical Engineering, Linkoping University, Sweden, 3Department of Electrical Engineering, Technical University of Denmark, Denmark, 4Department of Behavioral Sciences and Learning, Linkoping University, Sweden, 5Linnaeus Centre HEAD, The Swedish Institute for Disability Research, Linkoping and Orebro Universities, Sweden
Recent research, investigating selective attention, has demonstrated that neural responses can be decoded to identify the sound source of a listener’s interest in everyday concurrent talkers situations. The objective of this study was to measure the effect of different signal to noise ratios (SNRs) on selective attention and listening effort, quantified by decoding accuracy and pupil dilation (PD). In an experimental setup with two competing talkers (presented at ±30°) and four-talker babble presented from the back of the listener (180°), we tested 8 hearing-impaired (HI) subjects. Subjects were instructed to attend to a speaker at either 0 dB SNR (high SNR) or at -5 dB SNR (low SNR), with respect to the other speaker. Sixty-four channels of scalp EEG and PD were acquired during the experiment. As expected, the behavioral data showed significantly improved performance with increasing SNR, although the performance level at low SNR was still above chance level. This entails that the HI subjects could still perform the task even in the low SNR condition. PD data showed non-significant increase in overall dilation for low SNR in the time-interval 10-25 sec after stimulus onset. EEG data analysis, using auditory attention decoding (AAD) methods, showed that the SNR had a significant effect on AAD performances. Significantly higher AAD accuracy (p < 0.03) and correlations between reconstructed and actual speech envelopes (p <0.01) were observed for the high SNR condition. It demonstrates the potential of the AAD methods to reveal the impact of SNR on selective attention in HI subjects.
Topic Area: ATTENTION: Auditory