The present study developed simple and rapid school-based binaural hearing tests as part of an experimental assessment for Central Auditory Processing Disorder (CAPD), and investigated the outcomes in relation to socioeconomic status. The investigations were carried out in a population study on 256 primary school children from fourteen schools within the Perth Metropolitan area. It was hypothesized that the tests results would show a significant association with socioeconomic level based on the reported association between CAPD and history of otitis media with effusion (OME), a disease known to be prevalent in disadvantaged populations. A significant association would raise concern of an underlying physiological auditory problem for the educational and social-emotional issues often reported in this population. The tests of binaural hearing used in this study were subjective measure of directional hearing (DH) ability and the objective measure of binaural interaction using the postauricular muscle response (PAMR). Both of these tests have been shown to be sensitive to identifying subjects diagnosed with CAPD in a laboratory set-up (Zakaria, 2007). The tests were adapted for use within the school environment and implemented in a protocol that allowed for large number of children to be tested in a relatively short amount of time. This was done by incorporating the use of inexpensive MP3 players, simple score sheets and automatic video marking for the lateralization test; and custom-made portable two-channel equipment for the PAMR test.
|Qualification||Doctor of Philosophy|
|Publication status||Unpublished - 2010|