The PhD student will assess hearing impairment by exploring a novel noninvasive method of
recording auditory nerve activity to continuous naturalistic sounds (e.g. speech). The goals are to
gain a better understanding of differences in sound representations and processes in healthy and
damaged auditory systems and to explore the value of such recordings in guiding the adjustment of
hearing aid parameters.
The PhD candidate shall conduct measurements on normal hearing and hearing impaired subjects,
with and without hearing aids, during several carefully designed studies with the goal of assessing
the feasibility of ANA based hearing aid fitting.
Exploring auditory nerve activity as a means of understanding the benefit and adjusting hearing aid
Hearing impairment associated with aging affects two‐thirds of individuals over 70 years of age.
Despite the complexity of the auditory system and its malfunctioning, the predominant method of
determining the extent of the hearing impairment, deciding on the potential treatment and finally
fitting the hearing aid is a single outcome measure ‐ the audiogram. An audiogram measures hearing
thresholds in quiet for narrowband pure tones, and as such gives very little additional information
about the state of the inner, outer hair cells and/or the auditory nerve activity (ANA).