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  • 1.
    Eccles, Renata
    et al.
    University of Pretoria, South Africa.
    van der Linde, Jeannie
    University of Pretoria, South Africa.
    le Roux, Mia
    University of Pretoria, South Africa.
    Holloway, Jenny
    Council for Scientific and Industrial Research Next Generation Enterprises and Institutions, Pretoria, South Africa.
    MacCutcheon, Douglas
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building Engineering, Energy Systems and Sustainability Science, Environmental Science.
    Ljung, Robert
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building Engineering, Energy Systems and Sustainability Science, Environmental Science.
    Swanepoel, De Wet
    University of Pretoria, South Africa.
    Effect of music instruction on phonological awareness and early literacy skills of five- to seven-year-old children2021In: Early Child Development and Care, ISSN 0300-4430, E-ISSN 1476-8275, Vol. 191, no 12, p. 1896-1910Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    ABSTRACT Multiple studies and systematic reviews have shown that music instruction improves phonological awareness (PA) and early literacy skills in children, although findings vary. In meta-analyses, the reliability and significance of the transfer effect are reduced. The study evaluated the effect of varying durations of music instruction exposure, over a single academic year, on PA and early literacy of young children. Based on the exposure to music instruction, participants were assigned to either a low- or high-exposure group. Additional analyses were conducted for 17 age-matched pairs and to compare participants that only received class music to those that received additional music instruction. Between-groups comparisons showed no significant difference after a single academic year of music instruction. Within-groups comparisons identified more PA improvements in the high-exposure group. Exposure to music instruction for no less than one academic year, is required to conclusively evaluate the effect on PA and early literacy.

  • 2.
    Eccles, Renata
    et al.
    University of Pretoria.
    van der Linde, Jeannie
    University of Pretoria.
    le Roux, Mia
    University of Pretoria.
    Holloway, Jenny
    Council for Scientific and Industrial Research Next Generation Enterprises and Institutions, Pretoria.
    MacCutcheon, Douglas
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building Engineering, Energy Systems and Sustainability Science, Environmental Science.
    Ljung, Robert
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building Engineering, Energy Systems and Sustainability Science, Environmental Science.
    Swanepoel, De Wet
    University of Pretoria.
    Is phonological awareness related to pitch, rhythm, and speech-in-noise discrimination in young children?2021In: Language, speech & hearing services in schools, ISSN 0161-1461, E-ISSN 1558-9129, Vol. 52, no 1, p. 383-395Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Purpose. Phonological awareness (PA) requires the complex integration of language, speech, and auditory processing abilities. Enhanced pitch and rhythm discrimination have been shown to improve PA and speech-in-noise (SiN) discrimination. The screening of pitch and rhythm discrimination, if nonlinguistic correlates of these abilities, could contribute to screening procedures prior to diagnostic assessment. This research aimed to determine the association of PA abilities with pitch, rhythm, and SiN discrimination in children aged 5–7 years old.

    Method. Forty-one participants' pitch, rhythm, and SiN discrimination and PA abilities were evaluated. To control for confounding factors, including biological and environmental risk exposure and gender differences, typically developing male children from high socioeconomic statuses were selected. Pearson correlation was used to identify associations between variables, and stepwise regression analysis was used to identify possible predictors of PA.

    Results. Correlations of medium strength were identified between PA and pitch, rhythm, and SiN discrimination. Pitch and diotic digit-in-noise discrimination formed the strongest regression model (adjusted R2 = .4213, r = .649) for phoneme–grapheme correspondence.

    Conclusions. The current study demonstrates predictive relationships between the complex auditory discrimination skills of pitch, rhythm, and diotic digit-in-noise recognition and foundational phonemic awareness and phonic skills in young males from high socioeconomic statuses. Pitch, rhythm, and digit-in-noise discrimination measures hold potential as screening measures for delays in phonemic awareness and phonic difficulties and as components of stimulation programs.

  • 3.
    Eccles, Renata
    et al.
    University of Pretoria, South Africa.
    van der Linde, Jeannie
    University of Pretoria, South Africa.
    le Roux, Mia
    University of Pretoria, South Africa.
    Swanepoel, De Wet
    University of Pretoria, South Africa.
    MacCutcheon, Douglas
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building Engineering, Energy Systems and Sustainability Science, Environmental Science.
    Ljung, Robert
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building Engineering, Energy Systems and Sustainability Science, Environmental Science.
    The effect of music education approaches on phonological awareness and early literacy: A systematic review2021In: Australian Journal of Language & Literacy, ISSN 1038-1562, Vol. 44, no 1, p. 46-60Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Music education has been demonstrated to positively influence the development of early literacy with the type of intervention identified as a moderating factor. However, research comparing the effects of different music education approaches on phonological awareness and early literacy is limited. This systematic review aimed to compare the effect of the predominant music education approaches, namely Orff, Kodály, Suzuki and Dalcroze, on phonological awareness and early literacy. The PRISMA-P protocol was followed, and the study was registered with PROSPERO (CRD42018094131). Five electronic databases were searched. Eligibility criteria included peer reviewed English-language journal publications of quasi-experimental or experimental research studies with typically developing populations aged five to eight years old. Musical intervention had to be based on the principles of the Orff, Kodály, Suzuki or Dalcroze music education approaches or a combination thereof. Narrative synthesis was used in data analysis. From 329 records identified, five articles, from 1975 to 2013, qualified for final inclusion. The sample was heterogeneous regarding population characteristics, music education frequency and duration and abilities assessed. The outcomes from the included studies showed that music education improved aspects of phonological awareness and early literacy. However, standardization of methodological aspects would be required for definite comparisons between the music education approaches to be made. Although direct effects of the music education approaches could not be described, the review outlined factors, such as methodological diversity, that influence the investigation of skill transfer from music education to literacy abilities. The lack of and need for research from lower-middle income countries investigating music education as an intervention approach for phonological awareness and early literacy was identified.

  • 4.
    Kabanshi, Alan
    et al.
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building Engineering, Energy Systems and Sustainability Science, Energy Systems and Building Technology.
    Linden, Elisabet
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building Engineering, Energy Systems and Sustainability Science, Energy Systems and Building Technology.
    Ogbuagu, Too-Chukwu
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building Engineering, Energy Systems and Sustainability Science.
    MacCutcheon, Douglas
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building Engineering, Energy Systems and Sustainability Science, Environmental Science. SG Ecophon AB..
    Persson, Torbjörn
    SG Ecophon AB..
    Plenum airflow distribution and its influence on the performance of a diffuse ceiling ventilation2022In: E3S Web Conf. Volume 356, 2022 The 16th ROOMVENT Conference (ROOMVENT 2022) / [ed] Li A., Olofsson T., Kosonen R., Xian, 2022, Vol. 356, article id 01026Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Implementation of diffuse ceiling ventilation (DCV) is slowly gaining momentum and applications in building ventilation have taken off with countries like Denmark, Finland and Netherlands taking the lead in Europe. However, DCV is yet to gain a foothold in Sweden and so not many installations are known, and their performance in relation to Swedish building practice is not yet established. A school in southern Sweden was subsequently renovated and two classrooms were equipped with a sound-absorbent suspended ceiling compatible with DCV. DCV has possible benefits for educational environments including improved thermal comfort as well as lower costs and noise levels. However, it is currently still unknown how supply conditions in the plenum affect the diffusion of air and resulting conditions within the room. To assess airflow characteristics and whether these influence flow conditions in the classroom, we investigated and compared the performance of DCV with two different supply conditions in the plenum. Air speeds and temperature distribution measurements in the plenum and classroom were performed with constant temperature anemometers and thermocouples respectively. The general observation from this study and the system setup herein is that airflow and temperature characteristics in the classroom were independent of the airflow conditions in the plenum. Further investigations in a controlled climate chamber are recommended to investigate and optimise system performance in accordance with Swedish building practice.

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  • 5.
    Ljung, Robert
    et al.
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building, Energy and Environmental Engineering, Environmental psychology.
    MacCutcheon, Douglas
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building, Energy and Environmental Engineering, Environmental psychology.
    Pausch, Florian
    RWTH Aachen Institut für Technische Akustik, Aachen, Tyskland.
    Fels, Janina
    RWTH Aachen Institut für Technische Akustik, Aachen, Tyskland.
    Top-Down Cognitive Factors Influence Second-Language Word Identification in Noise2017In: Abstracts of the Psychonomic Society, 2017, Vol. 22, p. 291-291, article id 5109Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Forty-four sequential bilingual children aged fifteen underwent assessments of speech-in-noise perception, first and second language vocabulary and auditory working memory (forward digit span). In order to investigate the signal driven processes might affect bilinguals’ “spatial release from masking” (SRM) a listening in spatialized noise paradigm was adapted for the bilingual context. A simple number and colour identification task presented in English and Swedish, and the talker was masked adaptively by speech-shaped noise and eight-talker babble under two spatialized conditions in simulated room acoustics; targets and maskers were either collocated at zero degrees azimuth or spatially separated at ninety degrees azimuth to either side. The resulting language and noise conditions were contrasted with existing research on bilingual adults and native-language speaking children, extending findings to a younger sample of sequential bilingual children. The results indicating a significant relationship between cognitive ability and second-language speech reception threshold.

  • 6.
    MacCutcheon, Douglas
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building Engineering, Energy Systems and Sustainability Science, Environmental Science.
    Effects of environmental acoustic factors, individual differences and musical training on speech perception in simulated classrooms2020Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Formal learning takes place primarily through speech perception in classroom environments and is therefore dependent on the listener’s ability to cope with a number of acoustic factors that interfere with the speech signal. As classrooms are inclusive spaces accommodating learners with a broad range of abilities and backgrounds, this research investigated some of the ways in which individual differences in supporting cognitive skills are related to speech perception outcomes in various challenging acoustic environments. A potential avenue for the remediation of speech perception problems was also investigated. Studies comparing trained musicians’ with non-musicians’ speech perception have consistently shown a “musicians’ advantage” for speech-in-noise tasks, therefore this research longitudinally investigated whether one year of musical training was capable of producing improved speech perception thresholds in children. Therefore, the first three studies investigated relationships between the cognitive abilities of the listener and speech perception under various challenging environmental conditions, and the final study reported whether a year of musical training was able to produce learning effects generalizable to speech perception in the same challenging auditory environments tested in the two preceding experiments. Tests involved attending to a target talker underexperimental conditions in which the target signal was increasingly difficult todiscern either by lengthening reverberation time or by adding noise (i.e., competing sounds or talkers). In the second, third and fourth studies, the configuration of target and noise sources in the simulated room were manipulated to be either collocated or spatially separated from one-another. In order to additionally explore the relationship between speech perception and underlying cognitive processes, a number of measures were taken including phonological working memory capacity (number updating, digit span) and language assessments (vocabulary, expressive language) and analysed in relation to speech perception outcomes under the various experimental conditions. In all four studies, speech perception was tested in virtual classroom environments that were simulated based on actual classroom acoustic measurements taken in participating Swedish schools. The cumulative findings of this body of work linked differences in language ability, background and performance on various cognitive tests to speech perception thresholds, suggesting that not all learners are on equal footing in the classroom environment. However, musical training of the intensity and duration provided was unable to improve group performanceon speech perception or cognitive measures.

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  • 7.
    MacCutcheon, Douglas
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building Engineering, Energy Systems and Sustainability Science, Environmental Science.
    Negative responses to urban residential noise as a social rebound effect of increasing population density: Legislative challenges and auditory territoriality.2021In: Noise & Health, ISSN 1463-1741, E-ISSN 1998-4030, Vol. 23, no 108, p. 35-41Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Populations in cities are projected to increase globally, densifying urban residential environments with both positive and negative effects. Positive social effects are offset by negative health effects however; urban residential noise has been identified in a large number of studies as a significant contributor to social unrest as well as a risk to physiological and psychological health caused by stress, making this topic highly relevant to the discussion on sustainability urban growth. Focusing on the psychological rebound effect of urban residential noise, this paper attempts to explain how and why auditory aspects of the spatial environment negatively influences urban residents. To provide context and to indicate areas in need of improvement, the legislative challenges to be faced are considered, with Sweden as a prime example of a first world country grappling with the effects of increased urban density. Existing building legislation regarding residential noise is considered in relation to studies investigating the effects of residential noise on psychological and physiological health, outlining areas in need of future development. Then, health responses to residential noise are placed in a broader evolutionary context by considering how these effects might be the result of triggered evolutionary mechanisms for keeping population size optimal. Further, the spatial dimension of hearing is discussed with reference to theories of territoriality in environmental psychology and the concept of auditory territoriality is described.

  • 8.
    MacCutcheon, Douglas
    et al.
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building Engineering, Energy Systems and Sustainability Science, Environmental Science. University of Pretoria, South Africa.
    Füllgrabe, Christian
    Loughborough University, UK.
    Eccles, Renata
    University of Pretoria, South Africa.
    van der Linde, Jeannie
    University of Pretoria, South Africa.
    Panebianco, Clorinda
    University of Pretoria, South Africa.
    Ljung, Robert
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building Engineering, Energy Systems and Sustainability Science, Environmental Science.
    Investigating the Effect of One Year of Learning to Play a Musical Instrument on Speech-in-Noise Perception and Phonological Short-Term Memory in 5-to-7-Year-Old Children2020In: Frontiers in Psychology, E-ISSN 1664-1078, Vol. 10, article id 2865Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The benefits in speech-in-noise perception, language and cognition brought about by extensive musical training in adults and children have been demonstrated in a number of cross-sectional studies. Therefore, this study aimed to investigate whether one year of school-delivered musical training, consisting of individual and group instrumental classes, was capable of producing advantages for speech-in-noise perception and phonological short-term memory in children tested in a simulated classroom environment. Forty-one children aged 5-7 years at the first measurement point participated in the study and either went to a music-focused or a sport-focused private school with an otherwise equivalent school curriculum. The children’s ability to detect number and color words in noise was measured under a number of conditions including different masker types (speech-shaped noise, single-talker background) and under varying spatial combinations of target and masker (spatially collocated, spatially separated). Additionally, a cognitive factor essential to speech perception, namely phonological short-term memory, was assessed. Findings were unable to confirm that musical training of the frequency and duration administered was associated with a musician's advantage for either speech in noise, under any of the masker or spatial conditions tested, or phonological short-term memory.

  • 9.
    MacCutcheon, Douglas
    et al.
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building Engineering, Energy Systems and Sustainability Science, Environmental Science.
    Holmgren, Mattias
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building Engineering, Energy Systems and Sustainability Science, Environmental Science.
    Haga, Andreas
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building Engineering, Energy Systems and Sustainability Science, Environmental Science.
    Assuming the best: Individual differences in compensatory “green” beliefs predict susceptibility to the negative footprint illusion2020In: Sustainability, E-ISSN 2071-1050, Vol. 12, no 8, article id 3414Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Recent years have seen a marked increase in carbon emissions despite pledges made by the international community at the Paris Accord in 2015 to reduce fossil fuel production and consumption. Rebound effects could contribute to this phenomenon as, in which attempts to curb carbon emissions might have inadvertently led to an upswing in fossil fuel usage. The present study hypothesizes that rebound effects are driven by a misapplication of compensatory balancing heuristics, with the unintended outcome of producing inaccurate estimates of the environmental impact of “green” or environmentally friendly labelled products or behaviors. The present study therefore aims to investigate the relationship between participants’ degree of compensatory thinking (e.g., “Recycling compensates for driving a car”) and their susceptibility to the Negative Footprint Illusion, a widely replicated phenomenon demonstrating that the presence of “green” products biases carbon footprint estimations. One hundred and twelve participants were asked to complete a 15-item Compensatory Green Beliefs scale and to estimate the total carbon footprint of a set of 15 conventional houses, followed by a set that included 15 “green” houses in addition to 15 conventional houses. Results indicated that participants, on average, believed that the "green" houses were carbon neutral, and that susceptibility to the Negative Footprint Illusion was predicted by performance on the Compensatory Green Beliefs scale. This is the first study confirming that individual differences in cognitive processes (i.e., Compensatory Green Beliefs) are indeed related to inaccurate estimates of “green” products, providing a foundation for further investigation of the influence of “green” and compensatory beliefs on carbon footprint estimates.

  • 10.
    MacCutcheon, Douglas
    et al.
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building Engineering, Energy Systems and Sustainability Science, Environmental Science.
    Hurtig, Anders
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building Engineering, Energy Systems and Sustainability Science, Environmental Science.
    Pausch, Florian
    Aachen University, Aachen, Germany.
    Hygge, Staffan
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building Engineering, Energy Systems and Sustainability Science, Environmental Science.
    Fels, Janina
    Aachen University, Aachen, Germany.
    Ljung, Robert
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building Engineering, Energy Systems and Sustainability Science, Environmental Science.
    Second language vocabulary level is related to benefits for second language listening comprehension under lower reverberation time conditions2019In: Journal of Cognitive Psychology, ISSN 2044-5911, E-ISSN 2044-592X, Vol. 31, no 2, p. 175-185Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The acoustic qualities of a room can have a deleterious effect on the quality of speech signals. The acoustic measurement of reverberation time (RT) has shown to impact second language (L2) speech comprehension positively when lower due to release from spectral and temporal masking effects as well as top-down processing factors. This auralization experiment investigated the benefits of better L2 vocabulary and executive function (updating) skills during L2 listening comprehension tests under shorter versus longer RT conditions (0.3 and 0.9 s). 57 bilingual university students undertook L2 vocabulary, number updating and L2 listening comprehension tests. After splitting groups into high/low vocabulary and updating groups, a mixed ANOVA was conducted. The high number updating group showed no significant differences or interactions in L2 listening comprehension than the lower number updating group across RT conditions. The high vocabulary group had 22% better L2 listening comprehension than the low vocabulary group in long RT, and 9% better in short RT. A significant benefit in L2 listening comprehension due to release from reverberation was only evident in the high vocabulary group. Results indicate that the benefit of good room acoustics for listening comprehension is greatest for those with better language (vocabulary) ability.

  • 11.
    MacCutcheon, Douglas
    et al.
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building, Energy and Environmental Engineering, Environmental psychology.
    Pausch, Florian
    Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Information Technology, RWTH Aachen University, Aachen, Germany.
    Fels, Janina
    Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Information Technology, RWTH Aachen University, Aachen, Germany.
    Ljung, Robert
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building, Energy and Environmental Engineering, Environmental psychology.
    The effect of language, spatial factors, masker type and memory span on speech-in-noise thresholds in sequential bilingual children2018In: Scandinavian Journal of Psychology, ISSN 0036-5564, E-ISSN 1467-9450, Vol. 59, no 6, p. 567-577Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This study considers whether bilingual children listening in a second language are among those on which higher processing and cognitive demands are placed when noise is present. Forty-four Swedish sequential bilingual 15 year-olds were given memory span and vocabulary assessments in their first and second language (Swedish and English). First and second language speech reception thresholds (SRTs) at 50% intelligibility for numbers and colors presented in noise were obtained using an adaptive procedure. The target sentences were presented in simulated, virtual classroom acoustics, masked by either 16-talker multi-talker babble noise (MTBN) or speech shaped noise (SSN), positioned either directly in front of the listener (collocated with the target speech), or spatially separated from the target speech by 90° to either side. Main effects in the Spatial and Noise factors indicated that intelligibility was 3.8 dB lower in collocated conditions and 2.9 dB lower in MTBN conditions. SRTs were unexpectedly higher by 0.9 dB in second language conditions. Memory span significantly predicted 17% of the variance in the second language SRTs, and 9% of the variance in first language SRTs, indicating the possibility that the SRT task places higher cognitive demands when listening to second language speech than when the target is in the listener's first language.

  • 12.
    MacCutcheon, Douglas
    et al.
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building, Energy and Environmental Engineering, Environmental psychology.
    Pausch, Florian
    RWTH Aachen University.
    Fels, Janina
    RWTH Aachen University.
    Ljung, Robert
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building, Energy and Environmental Engineering, Environmental psychology.
    The relationship between working memory and second language speech reception thresholds in sequential bilingual children2017In: APCAM 2017: 16th Annual Auditory Perception, Cognition, and Action Meeting, 2017, p. 14-14Conference paper (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    This study considers whether or not bilingual school children listening and learning in a second language are among those on which higher perceptual processing and cognitive demands are placed when classroom noise is present. Empirical substantiation for this theory would include elevated speech reception thresholds (SRTs) for second language speech in noise, and native or second language-specific correlations between SRTs and cognitive measures such as working memory (WM) or factors such as the age at which the second language was acquired (age of second language acquisition). Forty-four Swedish sequential bilingual children with no sensory or learning deficits took part in this study. Working memory and vocabulary assessments were conducted and language background data were collected. SRTs at 50 % intelligibility were obtained using an adaptive procedure under Language, Spatial and Noise conditions. The target sentence was presented in simulated room acoustics in Swedish and English, masked by either 8-talker babble or speech shaped noise (SSN) with identical long-term average speech spectra, and noise maskers were positioned either directly in front of the listener or spatially separated from the target at 90° azimuth to either side. Main effects in the Spatial and Noise conditions indicated that spatial release from masking favoured spatially separated conditions and a noise release from masking advantage for SSN conditions, indicated by significantly lower thresholds for those conditions. There were no significant interactions with Language. The age of second language acquisition did not significantly predict second language SRTs and was excluded from the regression model. However, WM significantly predicted 21% of the variance in the second language SRTs, and 9% of the variance in native language SRTs. WM predicted more of the variance in second language SRTs than first language SRTs, suggesting that cognition plays more of a role in second language perceptual processes than native language ones.

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  • 13.
    MacCutcheon, Douglas
    et al.
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building Engineering, Energy Systems and Sustainability Science, Environmental Science.
    Pausch, Florian
    Medical Acoustics Group, Institute of Technical Acoustics, Rheinisch Westfalische Technische Hochschule Aachen, Germany.
    Füllgrabe, Christian
    School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences, Loughborough University, UK.
    Eccles, Renata
    Department of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology, University of Pretoria, South Africa.
    van der Linde, Jeannie
    Panebianco, Clorinda
    Department of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology, University of Pretoria, South Africa.
    Fels, Janina
    Medical Acoustics Group, Institute of Technical Acoustics, Rheinisch Westfalische Technische Hochschule Aachen, Germany.
    Ljung, Robert
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building Engineering, Energy Systems and Sustainability Science, Environmental Science.
    The contribution of individual differences in memory span and language ability to spatial release from masking in young children2019In: Journal of Speech, Language and Hearing Research, ISSN 1092-4388, E-ISSN 1558-9102, Vol. 62, no 10, p. 3741-3751Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Purpose: Working memory capacity and language ability modulate speech reception; however, the respective roles of peripheral and cognitive processing are unclear. The contribution of individual differences in these abilities to utilization of spatial cues when separating speech from informational and energetic masking backgrounds in children has not yet been determined. Therefore, this study explored whether speech reception in children is modulated by environmental factors, such as the type of background noise and spatial configuration of target and noise sources, and individual differences in the cognitive and linguistic abilities of listeners.

    Method: Speech reception thresholds were assessed in 39 children aged 5-7 years in simulated school listening environments. Speech reception thresholds of target sentences spoken by an adult male consisting of number and color combinations were measured using an adaptive procedure, with speech-shaped white noise and single-talker backgrounds that were either collocated (target and back-ground at 0°) or spatially separated (target at 0°, background noise at 90° to the right). Spatial release from masking was assessed alongside memory span and expressive language.

    Results and Conclusion: Significant main effect results showed that speech reception thresholds were highest for informational maskers and collocated conditions. Significant interactions indicated that individual differences in memory span and language ability were related to spatial release from masking advantages. Specifically, individual differences in memory span and language were related to the utilization of spatial cues in separated conditions. Language differences were related to auditory stream segregation abilities in collocated conditions that lack helpful spatial cues, pointing to the utilization of language processes to make up for losses in spatial information.

  • 14.
    Marsh, John E.
    et al.
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building, Energy and Environmental Engineering, Environmental psychology.
    Ljung, Robert
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building, Energy and Environmental Engineering, Environmental psychology.
    Jahncke, Helena
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Health and Occupational Studies, Department of Occupational and Public Health Sciences, Occupational health science. University of Gävle, Centre for Musculoskeletal Research.
    MacCutcheon, Douglas
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building, Energy and Environmental Engineering, Environmental psychology.
    Pausch, Florian
    Institute of Technical Acoustics, RWTH Aachen University, Aachen, Germany.
    Ball, Linden J.
    School of Psychology, University of Central Lancashire, Preston, UK 3.
    Vachon, François
    École de psychologie, Université Laval, Québec, Canada.
    Why are background telephone conversations distracting?2018In: Journal of experimental psychology. Applied, ISSN 1076-898X, E-ISSN 1939-2192, Vol. 24, no 2, p. 222-235Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Telephone conversation is ubiquitous within the office setting. Overhearing a telephone conversation-whereby only one of the two speakers is heard-is subjectively more annoying and objectively more distracting than overhearing a full conversation. The present study sought to determine whether this "halfalogue" effect is attributable to unexpected offsets and onsets within the background speech (acoustic unexpectedness) or to the tendency to predict the unheard part of the conversation (semantic [un]predictability), and whether these effects can be shielded against through top-down cognitive control. In Experiment 1, participants performed an office-related task in quiet or in the presence of halfalogue and dialogue background speech. Irrelevant speech was either meaningful or meaningless speech. The halfalogue effect was only present for the meaningful speech condition. Experiment 2 addressed whether higher task-engagement could shield against the halfalogue effect by manipulating the font of the to-be-read material. Although the halfalogue effect was found with an easy-to-read font (fluent text), the use of a difficult-to-read font (disfluent text) eliminated the effect. The halfalogue effect is thus attributable to the semantic (un)predictability, not the acoustic unexpectedness, of background telephone conversation and can be prevented by simple means such as increasing the level of engagement required by the focal task. 

  • 15. Ogbuagu, Cyracus Too-Chukwu
    et al.
    Linden, Elisabet
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building Engineering, Energy Systems and Sustainability Science, Energy Systems and Building Technology.
    MacCutcheon, Douglas
    SG Ecophon AB, Box 500, 265 03 Hyllinge, Sweden.
    Nilsson, Erling
    SG Ecophon AB, Box 500, 265 03 Hyllinge, Sweden.
    Persson, Torbjorn
    SG Ecophon AB, Box 500, 265 03 Hyllinge, Sweden.
    Kabanshi, Alan
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building Engineering, Energy Systems and Sustainability Science, Energy Systems and Building Technology.
    On the Performance of Diffuse Ceiling Ventilation in Classrooms: A Pre-Occupancy Study at a School in Southern Sweden2023In: Sustainability, E-ISSN 2071-1050, Vol. 15, no 3, article id 2546Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The implementation and application of diffused ceiling ventilation (DCV) is gradually gaining momentum, especially in Denmark, Finland, and the Netherlands. In countries such as Sweden, the application is limited despite the favorable conditions for implementation. The current study investigates the performance of DCV and mixing ventilation in a pre-occupancy field study for newly renovated classrooms in Southern Sweden. Two classrooms at the school were installed with diffuse ceiling ventilation while the rest had mixing ventilation. The objective of the study was to compare and evaluate the ventilation performance in terms of indoor environmental quality parameters such as thermal comfort, air quality indexes, airflow, and temperature distribution. Pre-occupancy measurements were performed in two classrooms with similar room characteristics, with one room running under mixing ventilation and the other under DCV. Constant temperature anemometers, thermocouples, and INNOVA thermal comfort were used to measure the indoor air speeds, temperature, and thermal comfort, respectively. Tracer gas measurements, with SF6, were performed to assess air quality. Additionally acoustic measurements were conducted to assess the acoustic benefits of DCV on reducing ventilation noise. The results demonstrate that DCV offers similar indoor environmental conditions to mixing ventilation but has better acoustic performance especially on reducing the ventilation noise. Indoor environmental conditions were very homogeneous under DCV with mixing ventilation showing tendencies for short circuit ventilation. This study demonstrates that DCV has a potential for implementation in Swedish schools with minimal system modification on existing ventilation and air distribution systems.

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  • 16.
    Sörqvist, Patrik
    et al.
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building Engineering, Energy Systems and Sustainability Science, Environmental Science.
    MacCutcheon, Douglas
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building Engineering, Energy Systems and Sustainability Science, Environmental Science.
    Holmgren, Mattias
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building Engineering, Energy Systems and Sustainability Science, Environmental Science.
    Haga, Andreas
    University of Gävle, Faculty of Engineering and Sustainable Development, Department of Building Engineering, Energy Systems and Sustainability Science, Environmental Science.
    Västfjäll, Daniel
    Linköpings universitet.
    Moral spillover in carbon offset judgments2022In: Frontiers in Psychology, E-ISSN 1664-1078, Vol. 13, article id 957252Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Moral spillover occurs when a morally loaded behavior becomes associated with another source. In the current paper, we addressed whether the moral motive behind causing CO2 emissions spills over on to how much people think is needed to compensate for the emissions. Reforestation (planting trees) is a common carbon-offset technique. With this in mind, participants estimated the number of trees needed to compensate for the carbon emissions from vehicles that were traveling with various moral motives. Two experiments revealed that people think larger carbon offsets are needed to compensate for the emissions when the emissions are caused by traveling for immoral reasons, in comparison with when caused by traveling for moral reasons. Hence, moral motives influence people’s judgments of carbon-offset requirements even though these motives have no bearing on what is compensated for. Moreover, the effect was insensitive to individual differences in carbon literacy and gender and to the unit (kilograms or tons) in which the CO2 emissions were expressed to the participants. The findings stress the role of emotion in how people perceive carbon offsetting.

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