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Hearing and Donuts (Brain and Bagels) Seminar
April 23, 2021 @ 8:30 am - 9:30 am
Presenter: Jordan Drew, Ph.D. Candidate (Laboratory for Auditory Brain Sciences & Neuroengineering), University of Washington – Seattle
Topic: Functional Connectivity in Auditory Attention Task
Current methods of assessing listening difficulties that focus on the periphery can sometimes fail to acknowledge higher cognitive contributions to a mixed ability to perceive speech in complex acoustic environments across listeners. These types of hearing difficulties are often referred to as hidden hearing loss or central auditory processing disorder since the locus of variability is unknown. The motivation behind this study is to elucidate the dynamic cortical network responsible for executing auditory attention tasks. Using M/EEG, we have discerned several brain regions engaged in maintaining and switching auditory attention within and across auditory features such as location and pitch. With this brain imaging data, we apply an autoregressive model to determine the functional connectivity between brain regions engaged in auditory attention. Long-term goals involve elucidating higher cognitive variability that could explain the mixed abilities across listeners to understand speech in complex auditory environments.