Audibility-based predictions of speech recognition for children and adults with normal hearing

Ryan W McCreery, Patricia G. Stelmachowicz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

45 Scopus citations


This study investigated the relationship between audibility and predictions of speech recognition for children and adults with normal hearing. The Speech Intelligibility Index (SII) is used to quantify the audibility of speech signals and can be applied to transfer functions to predict speech recognition scores. Although the SII is used clinically with children, relatively few studies have evaluated SII predictions of children's speech recognition directly. Children have required more audibility than adults to reach maximum levels of speech understanding in previous studies. Furthermore, children may require greater bandwidth than adults for optimal speech understanding, which could influence frequency-importance functions used to calculate the SII. Speech recognition was measured for 116 children and 19 adults with normal hearing. Stimulus bandwidth and background noise level were varied systematically in order to evaluate speech recognition as predicted by the SII and derive frequency-importance functions for children and adults. Results suggested that children required greater audibility to reach the same level of speech understanding as adults. However, differences in performance between adults and children did not vary across frequency bands.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4070-4081
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of the Acoustical Society of America
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 1 2011


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Acoustics and Ultrasonics

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