REMOVAL OF COMMUNICATION BARRIERS IN CLASSROOMS THROUGH MODULATED FREQUENCY SYSTEMS
The auditory capacities of students and the acoustic conditions of the classroom determine accessibility to oral communications in auditory-verbal learning environments. Optimal acoustics for hearing students may be insufficient for students with hearing loss. This study analyses the acoustic suitability of 23 ordinary classrooms for the inclusion of students with hearing loss who wear hearing aids or cochlear implants. Based on measurements of background noise, reverberation and classroom size, a computer simulation was conducted of the speech recognition ability of hearing loss and hearing students. The benefit of the use of Modulated Frequency systems as a technical aid in the removal of oral communication barriers was studied. Selected students with hearing loss took part in a speech recognition test, in silence and with background noise for lists of words of high and low lexical frequency, with and without the Modulated Frequency system. The results showed that the total number of classrooms studied had adequate acoustic conditions for hearing students but not for students with hearing loss.
The installation of Modulated Frequency systems significantly facilitated speech recognition, especially for low lexical frequency words in the presence of background noise. This study shows that introducing modulated frequency systems in classrooms with students with hearing loss is an effective procedure for reducing communication barriers.
For your bibliography: Zenker, F. (2013): “Removal of communication barriers in classrooms using modulated frequency systems”. FIAPAS Journal, April-June 2014, No.149, FIAPAS Supplement.