Audiovisual spoken word recognition by children with cochlear implants

Karen Iler Kirk, Marcia J. Hay-McCutcheon, Rachael Frush Holt, Sujuan Gao, Rong Qi, Bethany L. Gerlain

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study examined how prelingually deafened children with cochlear implants combine visual information from lip-reading with auditory cues in an open-set speech perception task. A secondary aim was to examine lexical effects on the recognition of words in isolation and in sentences. Fifteen children with cochlear implants served as participants in this study. Participants were administered two tests of spoken word recognition. The LNT assessed isolated word recognition in an auditory-only format. The AV-LNST assessed recognition of key words in sentences in a visual-only, auditory-only and audiovisual presentation format. On each test, lexical characteristics of the stimulus items were controlled to assess the effects of lexical competition. The children also were administered a test of receptive vocabulary knowledge. The results revealed that recognition of key words was significantly influenced by presentation format. Audiovisual speech perception was best, followed by auditory-only and visual-only presentation, respectively. Lexical effects on spoken word recognition were evident for isolated words, but not when words were presented in sentences. Finally, there was a significant relationship between auditory-only and audiovisual word recognition and language knowledge. The results demonstrate that children with cochlear implants obtain significant benefit from audiovisual speech integration, and suggest such tests should be included in test batteries intended to evaluate cochlear implant outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)250-261
Number of pages12
JournalAudiological Medicine
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2007
Externally publishedYes


  • Assessment
  • Cochlear implant
  • Hearing impairment
  • Speech perception

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Speech and Hearing

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