Research in the field of Audiology is p­­­ri­marily directed at:

  • Studying new options in hearing rehabilitation. 
  • Acquiring better insight in genetic hearing loss.

As such, it is embedded in the ENT -sub-centres “Hearing and Implants” and “Hearing and Genes”. Three projects are distinguished: Communication in subjects with intellectual disabilities, speech perception and aging, and development of an auditory speech perception standard for children.

Communication in subjects with intellectual disabilities

Marjolein Coppens (PHD student)
Ben Maassen (University of Groningen) and Ad Snik (supervisors).

The project started in 2008 and is aimed at measuring the effect of improved hearing and, separately, speech production therapy on communication.

First results show that rehabilitation of hearing loss with hearing devices is rather ineffective, most probably because verbal communication is at a low level in most living groups at the institutes where the subjects live. Speech production therapy has a significant effect on intelligibility. Long-term effects are still under study. The data suggest that rehabilitation is mainly effective in groups with obvious verbal communication.

Speech perception in realistic environments

Joop Leijendeckers (audiologist)
Ad Snik (supervisor)
In collaboration with Esther Janse (Max Planck Institute)­­

The project started early 2012. We participate as an associate partner. Scope of the research is to study the effect of bottom-up (perceptive) and top-down (cognitive) processing upon speech perception and a.o. to study the effects of speech and noise processing algorithms in hearing aids. 

Development of an intra European auditory speech perception standard

Anneke Vermeulen and Frans Coninx (Cologne) (supervisors)

The project started in 2011. Scope of the project is to develop and validate new speech perception tests (mainly for children) using new technology and additionally, to use such data (acquired internationally) to establish a measure that describes effectively the profit of rehabilitation in young deaf children and hearing impaired children.