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Series of Syllables Representing the /?/-/?/ Acoustic Continuum (Demorest et al., 2011)

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journal contribution
posted on 01.12.2011, 00:00 authored by Marilyn E. Demorest, David J. Wark, Sue Ann Erdman
Purpose The goal of this study was to develop a brief self-assessment instrument to screen for communication problems and psychosocial adjustment to hearing impairment as part of a rehabilitative needs assessment.
Method A pseudorandom sample of 1,000 cases was drawn from a large, heterogeneous clinical database containing audiometric data and responses to the Communication Profile for the Hearing Impaired (CPHI; Erdman & Demorest, 1998a). Item response theory was used to derive item-characteristic curves, and item selection was based primarily on item discrimination. Internal consistency, factor structure, sensitivity, and specificity of 2 scales, Communication and Adjustment, were evaluated in a holdout sample of 319 cases from the same database.
Results A 9-item Communication scale and an 11-item Adjustment scale both showed satisfactory internal consistency, and the 20-item test presented a clear 2-factor structure. Sensitivity and specificity functions and positive and negative predictive values indicated that the 2 scales could be used to identify the bottom 2 quartiles of the clinical population, as defined by factor scores on the CPHI.
Conclusion The 2 scales of the Screening Test for Hearing Problems can be used to screen for communication and adjustment problems that warrant a comprehensive rehabilitative assessment.


The original clinical study was supported by National Institutes of Health Grant R01DC01091. We gratefully acknowledge the following collaborators and the centers with which they were affiliated for their contributions to the clinical database on which the present study is based: Robert D. Madory, San Francisco Hearing and Speech Center; Joseph J. Montano, Manhattan Eye and Ear Hospital; the late Margaret W. Skinner, Washington University, St. Louis; and P. Lee Wilson, Callier Center for Communication Disorders, University of Texas at Dallas.