Data from: Individual differences in selective attention predict speech identification at a cocktail party
Oberfeld, Daniel; Klöckner-Nowotny, Felicitas (2017), Data from: Individual differences in selective attention predict speech identification at a cocktail party, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.f96cr
Listeners with normal hearing show considerable individual differences in speech understanding when competing speakers are present, as in a crowded restaurant. Here, we show that one source of this variance are individual differences in the ability to focus selective attention on a target stimulus in the presence of distractors. In 50 young normal-hearing listeners, the performance in tasks measuring auditory and visual selective attention was associated with sentence identification in the presence of spatially separated competing speakers. Together, the measures of selective attention explained a similar proportion of variance as the binaural sensitivity for the acoustic temporal fine structure. Working memory span, age, and audiometric thresholds showed no significant association with speech understanding. These results suggest that a reduced ability to focus attention on a target is one reason why some listeners with normal hearing sensitivity have difficulty communicating in situations with background noise.