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Participants

The Participants consists of 28 eight year old children. (14 monolingual and 14

bilinguals) The bilingual are either exposed to English along with another language from

birth or they were exposed to English at an early age. Parents reported that their bilingual

children spoke English on most occasions.

Apparatus

Testing was conducted in a double walled sound-attenuating booth (Industrial

acoustics co.) 3x2.8x2m in size, with the use of a customized program on a Dell

computer (Pentium 4). The participant sat on the left side of the room. The right speaker

(EMI) is located in front of the participant and the left speaker (EMI) is located 70

degrees to the left of the participant. The participant responded on each trial by speaking

into a microphone (Audi Technical ATM63) and the responses were recorded onto the

computer. The experimenter sat to the right of the participant and pushed a key on a

numerical keypad to initiate or repeat any trials.

Stimuli

The stimuli consists of 60 short simple sentences from Hearing in Noise Test, or Hint

(Nilsson, Soli, & Sullivan, 1994) which were spoken in accent free English by a male.

Each sentences consists of four to seven words and each sentence typically constitutes a

(see Table 1) A spectrally degraded version of each sentence was generated by a speech vocoder algorithm. The speech samples are digitized at a sampling rate of 10 kHz with 16-bit resolution. In the . the children were informed that the sentences were distorted to various degrees and their task is to repeat the sentence back in verbatim. (see Appendix 1 and 2) In the experiment. the higher the cut off frequency. meaning that any frequency above the cut off frequency is attenuated. 1995) The spectral content of the original sentences were low pass filtered. Procedure Participants were tested individually in the sound-attenuating booth with the experimenter present through the session. intelligibility increase as the number of noise bands increase because the more noise-bands you have.total of six or seven syllables. which consist of 1 sentence from each level of degradation. (Shannon et all. They were Generated with 4 6 8 10 noise bands. so any frequency above 300Hz would be attenuated in the 4 noise-band condition. All sentences were equated for amplitude and presented at 60db through the speakers. With speech generated in this manner. For example a noise band of 4 would have a cut off frequency of 300Hz. While the child is doing the experiment. which means that more frequencies is included. They were then given practice trials. with a frequency range of 300-6000Hz. the accompanying parent remained in an adjoining room filling out a brief questioner about their child’s use of each language and their family hearing history.

15 at each level of degradation presented in random order and unlike the practice trials. feedbacks were given.practice trials. The participants were then given the real trials. which consist of 60 sentences. no feedbacks were given. They were also told that they could ask for any sentence to be repeated at anytime and they were also encouraged to guess if they were unsure of the word heard. .