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Centre for Neuroscience in Education


The first publication from the project funded by the Fondation Botnar was published in the Journal of the Acoustical Society of America on 19th October 2021.

Children’s brains need time to develop crucial listening skills

It is well documented that children are generally worse at being able to hear speech clearly when there is background noise, such as other voices.  The reason for this is not well understood.  Our study has identified that on average young children aged below 10 years have limited ability to combine ‘spatial’ information across their two ears.  This ability, known as binaural processing, occurs in the brain and is important for hearing in noisy conditions.  One significance of these findings relates to the environmental characteristics of spaces designed for teaching and learning.  It is obviously important that a teacher can be heard clearly by their pupils.  Clarity can be improved by design of the classroom acoustics to reduce background noise.

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