Rowan, Daniel and Lutman, Mark E.
Learning to discriminate interaural time differences at low and high frequencies
International Journal of Audiology, 46, (10), . (doi:10.1080/14992020701524828).
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This study investigated learning, in normal-hearing
adults, associated with training (i.e. repeated practice)
on the discrimination of ongoing interaural time difference
(ITD). Specifically, the study addressed an apparent
disparity in the conclusions of previous studies, which
reported training-induced learning at high frequencies
but not at low frequencies. Twenty normal-hearing adults
were trained with either low- or high-frequency stimuli,
associated with comparable asymptotic thresholds, or
served as untrained controls. Overall, trained listeners
learnt more than controls and over multiple sessions. The
magnitudes and time-courses of learning with the lowand
high-frequency stimuli were similar. While this is
inconsistent with the conclusion of a previous study with
low-frequency ITD, this previous conclusion may not be
justified by the results reported. Generalization of learning
across frequency was found, although more detailed
investigations of stimulus-specific learning are warranted.
Overall, the results are consistent with the notion that
ongoing ITD processing is functionally uniform across
frequency. These results may have implications for clinical
populations, such as users of bilateral cochlear implants.
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