Pilot Study Validation of Hear Mobile Hearing Screening Application in the General Population
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The purpose of this pilot study was to test the quality of data collected by a mobile hearing screening application (hEAR) against the gold standard of pure tone audiometry administered by a certified audiologist. hEAR used 7 pre-set frequencies (125 Hz, 250 Hz, 500 Hz, 1000 Hz, 2000 Hz, 4000 Hz and 8000 Hz), which were the independent variables, and recorded measurements as sound pressure levels in decibels (dB) during three trials. In total, 30 subjects were recruited from the general population at Texas A&M University. Subjects were randomly assigned and counterbalanced in their assignment to a “quiet” room and a “noisy” room. Subjects used the hEAR mobile hearing screening application to self-administer hearing screening tests. Subjects also had hearing screening examinations performed by a certified audiologist at the identified pre-set frequencies. Data were analyzed using a mixed effect model and testing for repeated measures at 95% confidence intervals, results were separated by room. It was found that the hEAR trials differed from the audiologist trial at almost all frequencies in a noisy environment, but only at 2000 Hz and 8000 Hz for the quiet environment. It was also found that the app trials were very similar to one another (trials 1&2, trials 1&3 and trials 2&3 similar to each other) in the noisy environment; while they statistically differed from one another at almost all frequencies except 125 Hz in a quiet environment. Further research is needed so as to develop hEAR as an effective alternative to an audiologist-administered pure tone hearing test, which can consequently be used for better compliance with OSHA’s hearing screening requirements.
Dakuri, Lakshmi V (2015). Pilot Study Validation of Hear Mobile Hearing Screening Application in the General Population. Master's thesis, Texas A & M University. Available electronically from