Welcome to the Speech Perception and Cognition Research Laboratory!

Our work is motivated by the overarching goal of improving speech communication ability in older adults. Speech communication, the ability to engage in conversation and communicate with others in social scenarios, is a crucial component in older adults’ social participation and directly impacts their psychosocial well-being. We know a common complaint from many older individuals is difficulty in perceiving speech under adverse conditions, such as in noisy environments, or in group conversations. This problem is also exacerbated by multiple health issues, such as age-related hearing loss and cognitive impairment. The research in our lab addresses this problem based on multiple lines of work.     

  • Perceptual mechanisms in older adults’ speech perception under adverse conditions and the variability across individual listeners   
  • The interplay between hearing loss and cognitive difficulty in the aging cohort and its impact on clinical service  
  • Speech perception outcome measures that capture online processing of speech with fine-grained time sensitivity 
Hearing test in a study protocol

Support 

We are grateful to have ongoing support for our work from the National Institute on Deafness and other Communication Disorders. 

Opportunities for older individuals  

We are interested in working with older individuals with and without hearing loss who would like to participate in research. All of our research participants are compensated for their time and offered counseling about their auditory abilities as part of their involvement in our studies.

 For information on our current research projects, please contact us at spaclab@temple.edu

Lab news

1/2023 Mollee received the Mentored Student Presentation Travel Award from the American Auditory Society to present our work at the annual conference in March. Congratulations, Mollee and co-authors!

12/2022 Our lab is currently recruiting new volunteer RAs starting next semester. Please find details here if you are interested.

10/2022 New publication from our lab in Frontiers in Psychology – Auditory Cognitive Neuroscience with the title of “Interactions between Acoustic Challenges and Processing Depth in Speech Perception as Measured by Task-evoked Pupil Response”.

6/2022 New publication from our lab in the Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research with the title of “Speech Recognition in Noise Performance Measured Remotely Versus In-Laboratory From Older and Younger Listeners”.

6/2022 Our work is spotlighted in the College of Public Health News. Watch a short You2be video to learn more about our work!

4/2022 Dr. Jing Shen gave a talk at the 2022 Convention of the New Jersey Speech-Language-Hearing Association. The title of the talk was “The ear is connected to the brain: aging and cognition in the audiology clinic”.

3/2022 Congratulations to Mollee Feeney! Mollee has been awarded the Diamond Research Scholarship for working on a project about the perception of continuous speech in background noise.