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  ISVR-HABC-114: Optimizing the detection of cortical auditory evoked potentials in hearing aid fitting verification


   Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences

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  Prof David Simpson, Dr Steven Bell  Applications accepted all year round

About the Project

Hearing aids are now routinely fitted to infants as young as 6 weeks of age, following hearing screening. After fitting it is desirable to test whether the infant has access to auditory input, but before the age of 6-8 months it is not possible to carry out conventional clinical tests. In patients with dementia or learning difficulties, there are similar challenges. There is growing clinical interest in using Cortical Auditory Evoked Potential (CAEP) to address this. CAEPs are obtained by recording the electrical signals from the brain (EEG signals, recorded by electrodes on the scalp) during auditory stimulation. Through appropriate signal processing methods, the specific responses to the stimuli can be extracted. The current project will extend our previous work in this area by developing, testing and optimizing signal processing and statistical methods to detect the presence of CAEPs in the recorded signals, using data from healthy adults and small groups of patients (obtained with the assistance of clinical audiologists).

Successful applicants will have to demonstrate good knowledge of signal processing and statistics. While prior knowledge of audiology or evoked potentials is not required, some practical experience with biomedical applications of signal processing will be a distinct advantage.

ISVR has one of the UKs leading academic groups in audiology, with undergraduate, MSc and PhD programmes training professionals for clinical and research environments. The project will be supervised by Prof. David Simpson and Dr. Steven Bell, who have a background in biomedical signal processing and audiology, respectively. The work will be carried out in collaboration with industry with co-supervision from Dr. James Harte (Interacoustics Research Unit, Copenhagen, Denmark). Funding support comes from the Oticon Foundation (Denmark), and the project is expected to include a short stay (approximately 3 months) in Copenhagen. Funding covers living costs and home/EU (not overseas) student fees.

If you wish to discuss any details of the project informally, please contact Prof. David Simpson, Human Sciences Group, ISVR, Email: [Email Address Removed] Tel: +44 (0) 2380 59 3221, or Dr. Steven Bell, Human Sciences Group, ISVR, Email: [Email Address Removed] Tel: +44 (0) 2380 59 4950

 About the Project