4pPPa9. Effect of age on the comfortable loudness range in women.

Session: Thursday Afternoon, June 19

Author: Vishakha W. Rawool
Location: Commun. Disord. and Special Education, Bloomsburg Univ., Bloomsburg, PA 17815
Author: Joseph P. Pillion
Location: Kennedy Krieger Inst., Baltimore, MD 21205


This study is designed to evaluate the effect of age on the range of sound pressure levels perceived as ``comfortable.'' Ten young (22--26 years) and eight older (42--50 years) female subjects participated in the study. All the subjects had auditory sensitivity within 20 dB HL across 0.5 to 4 kHz. Subjects were asked to judge the loudness of warble tones in the following categories: not audible, very soft, soft, comfortable, loud and very loud. The loudness judgments were made at 0.5, 1, 2, and 4 kHz. For any loudness judgement to be considered valid, the same loudness judgment had to be assigned by the subject at least twice to the same sound pressure level. The comfortable loudness range was calculated for each subject by subtracting the highest sound pressure levels judged as ``soft'' from the lowest sound pressure levels judged as ``loud.'' The mean ``range of comfortable loudness'' values for the older female subjects is lower than that obtained from the younger subjects. Additional data are being collected. Following completion of data collection, the data will be submitted to the mixed multivariate analyses of variance. The results and possible implications of the findings will be discussed. [Work supported by Research and Disciplinary grant from Bloomsburg University.]

ASA 133rd meeting - Penn State, June 1997