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Title: Performance on stochastic figure-ground perception varies with individual differences in speech-in-noise recognition and working memory capacity

Speech recognition in noisy environments can be challenging and requires listeners to accurately segregate a target speaker from irrelevant background noise. Stochastic figure-ground (SFG) tasks in which temporally coherent inharmonic pure-tones must be identified from a background have been used to probe the non-linguistic auditory stream segregation processes important for speech-in-noise processing. However, little is known about the relationship between performance on SFG tasks and speech-in-noise tasks nor the individual differences that may modulate such relationships. In this study, 37 younger normal-hearing adults performed an SFG task with target figure chords consisting of four, six, eight, or ten temporally coherent tones amongst a background of randomly varying tones. Stimuli were designed to be spectrally and temporally flat. An increased number of temporally coherent tones resulted in higher accuracy and faster reaction times (RTs). For ten target tones, faster RTs were associated with better scores on the Quick Speech-in-Noise task. Individual differences in working memory capacity and self-reported musicianship further modulated these relationships. Overall, results demonstrate that the SFG task could serve as an assessment of auditory stream segregation accuracy and RT that is sensitive to individual differences in cognitive and auditory abilities, even among younger normal-hearing adults.

 
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Award ID(s):
2020624
NSF-PAR ID:
10484682
Author(s) / Creator(s):
; ; ; ; ; ; ; ;
Publisher / Repository:
The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America
Date Published:
Journal Name:
The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America
Volume:
153
Issue:
1
ISSN:
0001-4966
Page Range / eLocation ID:
286 to 303
Format(s):
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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