Speech Perception Benefits From Sound Field FM Amplification The effects of sound field FM amplification (SFA) on speech perception performance were investigated in this 2-year study. Kindergarten children with normal hearing were randomly assigned to a treatment group, which comprised 7 classrooms that had SFA systems installed in them, and to a control group, which comprised another 7 ... Research Article
Research Article  |   December 01, 2003
Speech Perception Benefits From Sound Field FM Amplification
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Lisa Lucks Mendel, PhD
    School of Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology, The University of Memphis, 807 Jefferson Avenue, Memphis, TN 38105
  • Richard A. Roberts
    University of South Florida, Tampa
  • Julie H. Walton
    The University of Mississippi, University, MS
  • Corresponding author: e-mail: lmendel@memphis.edu
Article Information
Hearing & Speech Perception / Acoustics / Hearing Disorders / Audiologic / Aural Rehabilitation / School-Based Settings / Research and Technology / Research Articles
Research Article   |   December 01, 2003
Speech Perception Benefits From Sound Field FM Amplification
American Journal of Audiology, December 2003, Vol. 12, 114-124. doi:10.1044/1059-0889(2003/019)
History: Received September 23, 2003 , Accepted October 9, 2003
 
American Journal of Audiology, December 2003, Vol. 12, 114-124. doi:10.1044/1059-0889(2003/019)
History: Received September 23, 2003; Accepted October 9, 2003

The effects of sound field FM amplification (SFA) on speech perception performance were investigated in this 2-year study. Kindergarten children with normal hearing were randomly assigned to a treatment group, which comprised 7 classrooms that had SFA systems installed in them, and to a control group, which comprised another 7 classrooms that did not have any amplification available. The children were followed from the beginning of kindergarten through the end of first grade. Improvements in speech perception performance were measured for both groups, with the treatment group demonstrating progress much sooner than the control group. However, this difference was not apparent by the end of the study. The only significant difference measured between the treatment and control groups was that the treatment group performed significantly better than the control group when the stimuli were presented with SFA for the treatment group and without SFA for the control group. The teachers who used SFA enjoyed using amplification in their classrooms and felt that their students enjoyed using it as well.

Acknowledgments
This study was conducted as a joint effort between The University of Mississippi, The University of Memphis, and Bramlett Elementary School. Appreciation is expressed to Mary Jo Ridgeway, Principal of Bramlett Elementary, for allowing us access to the students and facilities at her school. Thanks also go to Darlene Washington, Speech-Language Pathologist at Bramlett Elementary, for assisting in scheduling and organizing data collection sites within the school. We appreciate all of the Communicative Disorders graduate students at The University of Mississippi for their assistance during data collection, with special thanks to Audiology graduate students Holley-Marie Biggs, Sarah Hickey, Christi Lynch, Gina Sibley, and Stephanie Sun. Extra thanks go to Holley-Marie Biggs for her time preparing the data collection forms and entering the data for analysis.
Portions of this manuscript were presented at the annual convention of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, November 2001, and at the Mid-South Conference on Communicative Disorders, March 2002.
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