Development of the Cantonese Hearing In Noise Test (CHINT)

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Abstract

Objective:

To develop a Cantonese version of the Hearing In Noise Test (CHINT) with the same features as the English Hearing In Noise Test (HINT) (Nilsson, Soli, & Sullivan, 1994).

Design:

The CHINT was developed in five separate studies: (1) evaluation of initial materials; (2) creation of sentence materials; (3) equalization of sentence difficulty; (4) creation of sentence lists; and (5) evaluation of response variability, inter-list reliability, and establishment of norms. Using the CHINT material, reception thresholds for sentences were measured under four headphone test conditions: Quiet, and in noise with noise simulated as originating from 0° (noise front), 90° (noise right), and 270° (noise left). The speech source was located at 0° in all conditions. The locations of the speech and noise sources were simulated using virtual audio processing, as with the English HINT. The noise conditions consisted of listening with noise fixed at 65 dBA with the level of speech varied in an adaptive procedure. A total of 142 subjects with normal hearing thresholds participated in the five studies.

Results:

Two versions of the test materials, twenty-four 10-sentence lists and twelve 20-sentence lists, were created from a single set of 240 sentences containing 10 syllables per sentence. Using the twenty-four 10-sentence lists, mean thresholds under earphones in quiet were measured at 19.4 dBA and reception thresholds for sentences of −3.9 dB for noise front, −10.6 dB for noise right, and −10.5 dB for noise left. Similar results were obtained using the 20-sentence lists (19.4, −4.0, −10.9, and −11.0 dB, respectively, for quiet, noise front, noise right, and noise left conditions). There was low response variability within each list. High inter-list reliability suggests that consistent results could be obtained using any list. Confidence intervals are reported. The CHINT norms for listening in quiet and noise conditions were comparable to those for the English HINT.

Conclusions:

The CHINT is the first standardized Cantonese sentence speech intelligibility test. The CHINT was developed using the same rationale as the English HINT, allowing norm reference results from the two tests to be compared directly across languages. Results showed the CHINT is a reliable test. The CHINT would benefit from further evaluation of validity.

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