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J Speech Hear Res. 1994 Jun;37(3):662-70.

Age effects on measures of auditory duration discrimination.

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Gallaudet University, Center for Auditory & Speech Sciences, Washington, DC 20002-3695.


This study examined auditory temporal sensitivity in young adult and elderly listeners using psychophysical tasks that measured duration discrimination. Listeners in the experiments were divided into groups of young and elderly subjects with normal hearing sensitivity and with mild-to-moderate sloping sensorineural hearing loss. Temporal thresholds in all tasks were measured with an adaptive forced-choice procedure using tonal stimuli centered at 500 Hz and 4000 Hz. Difference limens for duration were measured for tone bursts (250 msec reference duration) and for silent intervals between tone bursts (250 msec and 6.4 msec reference durations). Results showed that the elderly listeners exhibited diminished duration discrimination for both tones and silent intervals when the reference duration was 250 msec. Hearing loss did not affect these results. Discrimination of the brief temporal gap (6.4 msec) was influenced by age and hearing loss, but these effects were not consistent across all listeners. Effects of stimulus frequency were not evident for most of the duration discrimination conditions.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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