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The relationship between auditory figure-ground perception and academic achievement in open area and.. Brown, Cheryl Ann 1975-12-31

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THE  RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN AUDITORY  FIGURE-GROUND  PERCEPTION AND ACADEMIC ACHIEVEMENT IN OPEN AREA AND SELF-CONTAINED CLASSROOMS  by  CHERYL ANN BROWN  B.A., S i r George W i l l i a m s U n i v e r s i t y , 1966 D i p . C h i l d Study, U n i v e r s i t y o f T o r o n t o , 1967  A t h e s i s submitted  i n p a r t i a l f u l f i l m e n t of  the requirements  f o r the degree o f  Master o f A r t s i n the F a c u l t y of Education  We accept t h i s t h e s i s as conforming required standard  THE  to the  UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA MARCH, 1975  In p r e s e n t i n g  t h i s t h e s i s in p a r t i a l  f u l f i l m e n t o f the requirements f o r  an advanced degree at the U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia, I agree the L i b r a r y s h a l l make i t f r e e l y  that  a v a i l a b l e f o r r e f e r e n c e and study.  I f u r t h e r agree t h a t p e r m i s s i o n f o r e x t e n s i v e  copying o f t h i s  thesis  f o r s c h o l a r l y purposes may be g r a n t e d by the Head o f my Department o r by h i s r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s .  I t i s understood that c o p y i n g o r p u b l i c a t i o n  of t h i s t h e s i s f o r f i n a n c i a l written  gain s h a l l  permission.  Department o f  /Zt^t^^^-^^  The U n i v e r s i t y o f B r i t i s h Columbia Vancouver 8, Canada  Date  not be a l l o w e d w i t h o u t my  ii ABSTRACT  T h i s study was  designed  l e a r n i n g environments on of  having  to i n v e s t i g a t e the e f f e c t s o f two  the achievement of c h i l d r e n who  a u d i t o r y f i g u r e - g r o u n d p e r c e p t i o n problems.  the n o i s e l e v e l s i n the t h r e e open a r e a and rooms used i n the study  statistically significant  Comparison o f  the d i f f e r e n c e s were o n l y Because o f these  hypothesized  p e r c e p t i o n as measured by the n o i s e s u b t e s t o f the  to be  found  Primary  i n grade one  Tests.  Goldman-Fristoe-  received their  used to t e s t  h y p o t h e s i s w i t h Wide Range Achievement Test s c o r e s  scores  (administered  trend i n the expected statistically concluded  d i r e c t i o n was  significant  (oC  first  this  (administered  t h r e e s u b t e s t s o f the C o o p e r a t i v e  i n the S p r i n g )  was  classrooms.  A s t e p w i s e m u l t i p l e r e g r e s s i o n a n a l y s i s was  F a l l ) as c o v a r i a t e s and  achievement  This relationship  c h i l d r e n who  year o f f o r m a l i n s t r u c t i o n i n s e l f - c o n t a i n e d  difficulty  figure-ground  Woodcock T e s t of A u d i t o r y D i s c r i m i n a t i o n , the lower t h e i r on the C o o p e r a t i v e  expected  t h a t the more  c h i l d r e n i n open areas had w i t h a u d i t o r y  n o t expected  suspected  three s e l f - c o n t a i n e d c l a s s -  i n the mornings.  d i f f e r e n c e s i n n o i s e l e v e l , i t was  s c o r e s would be  were  r e v e a l e d t h a t the open areas were c o n s i s t e n t l y  l o u d e r than the s e l f - c o n t a i n e d c l a s s e s b u t  grade one  different  i n the  Primary  as dependent v a r i a b l e s .  Test  Although  a  found, the r e s u l t s were n o t  = .05).  Therefore,  i t c o u l d not  be  t h a t c h i l d r e n w i t h a u d i t o r y f i g u r e - g r o u n d p e r c e p t i o n problems  were more a p p r o p r i a t e l y p l a c e d i n s e l f - c o n t a i n e d  classrooms.  iii  TABLE OF CONTENTS  page Abstract  11  T a b l e o f Contents  i i i  L i s t of Tables  iv  L i s t o f Figures-  v  Acknowledgements  •  v  i  Chapter 1  The Problem and R e l a t e d  2  H y p o t h e s i s and O p e r a t i o n a l  3  Method  4  Results  28  5  D i s c u s s i o n and C o n c l u s i o n s  46  Bibliography  Research  . .  1  Definitions  16 •  19  52  iv  LIST OF TABLES  Table  Title  1  Comparisons between the GFWT Norming Sample and the Sample used i n t h i s study (Chi-Square Goodness o f F i t )  Page  •  29  2  Summary o f Sound L e v e l Readings  30  3  Means, Standard D e v i a t i o n s , and I n t e r c o r r e l a t i o n s between the WRAT and GFWT Scores f o r the Open A r e a Group •  32  Means, Standard D e v i a t i o n s , and I n t e r c o r r e l a t i o n s between the WRAT and GFWT Scores f o r t h e S e l f Contained Group  33  Means, Standard D e v i a t i o n s , and I n t e r c o r r e l a t i o n s between t h e v a r i a l i l e s Used i n t b e Study  34  R e s u l t s o f t h e R e g r e s s i o n A n a l y s e s f o r the Q u i e t Subtest Data  37  4  5  6  7  Results M  the R e g r e s s i o n A n a l y s e s f o r the N o i s e  Subtest Data 8  Mean CPT Scores f o r t h e Type by N o i s e I n t e r a c t i o n  9  Mean CPT A d j u s t e d Scores f o r the Combined Groups Of The Type By N o i s e I n t e r a c t i o n  38 . .  41  ^3  V  LIST OF FIGURES  Figure  Title  Page  1  E x p e r i m e n t a l Design  . . . . . . . . .  20  2  Histogram of the Observed F r e q u e n c i e s o f the N o i s e S u b t e s t Raw Scores . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  4°  Type By Sex By N o i s e I n t e r a c t i o n on the Reading Regression Analysis  44  Type by Sex by N o i s e I n t e r a c t i o n f o r the C r i t i c a l and N o n - c r i t i c a l Groups on the Reading ANOVA . . . .  45  3  4  i  ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS  The a s s i s t a n c e and p a t i e n c e o f the members o f my Drs. D. Thomas, J . Conry, and R. Conry a r e g r a t e f u l l y  t h e s i s committee, acknowledged.  The c o o p e r a t i o n of Mr. L i n c o l n Chew and Dr. H. E. McLean o f the Vancouver M e t r o p o l i t a n H e a l t h Department was  sincerely  appreciated  f o r g a t h e r i n g the data t o compare the n o i s e l e v e l s i n the i n v o l v e d i n my  study while conducting  sound l e v e l s i n v a r i o u s classroom recognize  the i n t e r e s t and support  t h e i r own  situations.  f o r making i t p o s s i b l e f o r me schools.  into  I would a l s o l i k e to and Mr. A. Moody  o f P l a n n i n g and E v a l u a t i o n  to conduct my r e s e a r c h i n the Vancouver  F i n a l l y , I would l i k e to express  p r i n c i p a l s , teachers, parents  investigation  of Dr. E. N. E l l i s  o f the Vancouver School Board's Department  classrooms  my  g r a t i t u d e to the  and c h i l d r e n w i t h o u t whose  t h i s study would not have been p o s s i b l e .  cooperation  1  CHAPTER 1 THE  PROBLEM AND  RELATED RESEARCH  Overview of the Problem C h i l d r e n a r e bombarded c o n s t a n t l y by  competing a u d i t o r y  stimuli  but i n o r d e r t o f u n c t i o n e f f e c t i v e l y i n the s c h o o l s i t u a t i o n , must be a b l e to a t t e n d and Academic success  and b e h a v i o u r may  a b i l i t y to separate ground s t i m u l i  foreground  impaired  a u d i t o r y s t i m u l i from i r r e l e v a n t back-  t h a t a c h i l d has  Marsh, 1973).  a d i f f i c u l t y with  auditory  p e r c e p t i o n , i t i s u s u a l l y recommended t h a t he be  i n a "calm" atmosphere (Magdol, 1973). opinions  stimuli.  be s e r i o u s l y a f f e c t e d by  ( S i e g e n t h a l e r and B a r r , 1967;  When i t i s s u s p e c t e d figure-ground  respond s p e c i f i c a l l y t o r e l e v a n t  they  C r i t i c i s m based on  taught  teachers'  i s f r e q u e n t l y d i r e c t e d towards open a r e a c l a s s e s because o f  excessive noise conditions  ( A l l e n , 1972;  M e t r o p o l i t a n Toronto S c h o o l Board, 1971  P r i t c h a r d and Moodie, and  1973).  Therefore,  1971; i t is  u n l i k e l y t h a t t h i s type o f c l a s s r o o m would be a p p r o p r i a t e f o r a who  has  difficulty  auditory The suspected  irrelevant  stimuli. f o l l o w i n g case study of h a v i n g  S e v e r a l y e a r s ago, observation ment.  d i s t i n g u i s h i n g between r e l e v a n t and  child  i s an i l l u s t r a t i o n o f a c h i l d who  an a u d i t o r y f i g u r e - g r o u n d a seven y e a r o l d boy was  was  p e r c e p t i o n problem.  r e f e r r e d to  an  c l a s s because o f h i s d i s r u p t i v e b e h a v i o u r and  H i s o r i g i n a l placement had been i n an open a r e a  which c o n s i s t e d of f o u r c l a s s e s i n a l a r g e room.  underachieve-  situation  Individual  2  p s y c h o l o g i c a l t e s t i n g i n d i c a t e d t h a t he had h i g h average i n t e l l i g e n c e (Wechsler I n t e l l i g e n c e S c a l e f o r C h i l d r e n : V e r b a l IQ Performance IQ - 115;  F u l l S c a l e IQ - 117)  w i t h no  116;  apparent l e a r n i n g  d i s a b i l i t i e s except g r e a t d i f f i c u l t y i n l i s t e n i n g s i t u a t i o n s w i t h competing a u d i t o r y s t i m u l i a a s measured by the T e s t of A u d i t o r y D i s c r i m i n a t i o n (GFWT). and p a r e n t s  n o t e d t h a t he  background n o i s e and  turned on or h i s f a t h e r was  observed t h a t he  when t h e r e was  to her d i r e c t i o n s or  mastoid o p e r a t i o n s  i t was  functioning i n s i t u a t i o n s with  I t was  t h a t he may  because of t h i s suspected s e l f contained  c l a s s r o o m may  c o u l d have  Because o f h i s  have an a u d i t o r y f i g u r e - g r o u n d  problem, and  preschool  competing a u d i t o r y  recommended t h a t he not be  His  even though h i s  a p p a r e n t l y normal a t the time of r e f e r r a l .  suspected  problem.  child  conversation  during h i s  impeded the development of h i s a u d i t o r y p r o c e s s e s  difficulty  parents  p l a y i n g the g u i t a r .  the h e a r i n g impairment p r i o r to the o p e r a t i o n s  h e a r i n g was  His  q u i t e a b i t of a u d i t o r y a c t i v i t y i n the classroom.  h i s t o r y i n c l u d e d two  and  speech.  f u n c t i o n e d i n many ways l i k e a deaf  because of h i s f a i l u r e to a t t e n d  years  teacher  f r e q u e n t l y d i d n o t respond when spoken to i f the  t e l e v i s i o n s e t was  medical  Consultation with his  e l i c i t e d many examples o f h i s l a c k of a t t e n t i o n i n  s i t u a t i o n s where t h e r e was  His teacher  Goldman-Fristoe-Woodcock  returned  stimuli, perception  to the open  area  subsequent placement i n a q u i e t  have been p a r t i a l l y r e s p o n s i b l e f o r  e v e n t u a l improvement i n h i s b e h a v i o u r and  achievement.  3  The  Problem I t i s p o s s i b l e t h a t o t h e r c h i l d r e n who have d i f f i c u l t y  on r e l e v a n t a s p e c t s  o f the a u d i t o r y f i e l d  focussing  and " t u n i n g o u t " i r r e l e v a n t  background s t i m u l i a r e i n a p p r o p r i a t e l y p l a c e d i n open a r e a  classrooms  which a r e b e l i e v e d t o have more a u d i t o r y d i s t r a c t i o n s than  self-  contained evidence  classrooms. t o support  There does n o t appear t o be any e m p i r i c a l  t h i s statement, a l t h o u g h  a review  of the l i t e r a t u r e  l e n d s credence t o i t s v a l i d i t y . The  areas o f r e s e a r c h t o be e x p l o r e d i n c l u d e s p e c i f i c s t u d i e s  r e l a t e d t o a u d i t o r y f i g u r e ground p e r c e p t i o n as w e l l as the c o n t r o v e r s y over whether o r n o t open areas  a r e n o i s i e r than s e l f c o n t a i n e d c l a s s e s .  I f some l e a r n i n g environments a r e n o i s i e r than o t h e r s , t h e r e i s a need to i n v e s t i g a t e whether t h i s n o i s e has a d e t r i m e n t a l e f f e c t c o n a l l o r some c h i l d r e n s u c h as the case d e s c r i b e d p r e v i o u s l y .  Specific learning  d i f f i c u l t i e s may r e s u l t from poor a u d i t o r y f i g u r e - g r o u n d p e r c e p t i o n ; and, t h e r e f o r e , a review  o f s t u d i e s r e l a t e d to the d i a g n o s i s and r e m e d i a t i o n  of t h i s type o f problem i s a l s o  presented.  S t u d i e s R e l a t e d t o A u d i t o r y F i g u r e Ground P e r c e p t i o n As e a r l y as 1947, S t r a u s s and L e h t i n e n expressed c h i l d r e n who had d i f f i c u l t y auditory f i e l d  concern  about  f o c u s s i n g on r e l e v a n t a s p e c t s o f the  and ' t u n i n g out' i r r e l e v a n t background s t i m u l i .  s t u d i e s o f s e l e c t i v e a t t e n t i o n i n c h i l d r e n suggest f i g u r e - g r o u n d p e r c e p t i o n develops  w i t h age.  Some  that auditory  I n Junker's (1972)  o b s e r v a t i o n s o f i n f a n t s , he n o t i c e d t h a t the average twelve week o l d i n f a n t becomes s i l e n t i n the p r e s e n c e o f speech o r music.  By f o u r t e e n  4 weeks, a c h i l d w i l l o f sound s t i m u l i . found  t u r n h i s head and v i s u a l l y s e a r c h f o r the source Junker  d e v i s e d an a t t e n t i o n t e s t f o r i n f a n t s and  t h a t c h i l d r e n who had d i f f i c u l t y w i t h a u d i t o r y s e l e c t i v e  a t t e n t i o n i n i n f a n c y had a s t r o n g tendency  t o develop  d e f e c t i v e speech  and/or communication s k i l l s as i n d i c a t e d from f o l l o w - u p two y e a r s  assessments  later.  Maccoby and Konrad  (1966) s t u d i e d age trends i n s e l e c t i v e  a t t e n t i o n i n r e s p e c t to the s e l e c t i o n o f one a u d i t o r y s t i m u l u s when two were p r e s e n t e d s i m u l t a n e o u s l y .  Their subjects included thirty-two  c h i l d r e n i n each o f t h r e e grades: K i n d e r g a r t e n , second Each s u b j e c t l i s t e n e d twice t o twenty-three  and f o u r t h .  p a i r s o f words spoken  s i m u l t a n e o u s l y by two s p e a k e r s , a man and a woman.  On one o c c a s i o n ,  the words were p r e s e n t e d b i n a u r a l l y w i t h b o t h words i n b o t h e a r s a t the same time, and on t h e second  o c c a s i o n , the words were p r e s e n t e d  d i c h o t i c a l l y w i t h two d i f f e r e n t words i n each e a r a t the same time. The  s u b j e c t was i n s t r u c t e d to r e p e a t the words s a i d by the woman o r  man depending on the c o n d i t i o n . number o f c o r r e c t responses intrusive errors  Maccoby and Konrad found  that the  i n c r e a s e d w i t h age and the number o f  ( i . e . r e p o r t s o f words spoken b y the o t h e r v o i c e )  decreased w i t h age. Doyle  (1973) i n v e s t i g a t e d the e f f e c t s o f d i s t r a c t i o n on a u d i t o r y  s e l e c t i v e a t t e n t i o n w i t h 108 c h i l d r e n aged e i g h t , e l e v e n , and f o u r t e e n . She p r e s e n t e d s u b j e c t s w i t h l i s t s o f t a r g e t words which they had to r e p e a t word by word and remember.  While  t w o - t h i r d o f the s u b j e c t s  at each age l e v e l l i s t e n e d and r e p e a t e d the t a r g e t words, they were d i s t r a c t e d by another v o i c e s p e a k i n g s i m u l t a n e o u s l y .  The r e s t o f the  5  s u b j e c t s were not d i s t r a c t e d w h i l e target l i s t .  they l i s t e n e d and  R e t e n t i o n of the t a r g e t words was  repeated  t e s t e d by  the  presenting  each s u b j e c t w i t h a f o u r a l t e r n a t i v e , f o r c e d c h o i c e r e c o g n i t i o n t a s k . A s i m i l a r t a s k was I t was  found  used to t e s t f o r r e t e n t i o n o f d i s t r a c t i n g words.  t h a t the r e t e n t i o n o f the t a r g e t words was  a f f e c t e d among younger c h i l d r e n , and w i t h age. of  Doyle suggested  more s e r i o u s l y  that i n t r u s i v e e r r o r s  decreased  that these r e s u l t s demonstrated an  o l d e r c h i l d r e n to i n h i b i t  the i n t r u s i o n of d i s t r a c t i o n s  s e l e c t i v e a t t e n t i o n r a t h e r than an a b i l i t y  to f i l t e r  out  ability  during  distracting  m a t e r i a l i n the i n i t i a l stages o f p r o c e s s i n g . N e i t h e r Doyle nor Maccoby and Konrad made any  r e f e r e n c e to  the  p o s s i b i l i t y of a sex d i f f e r e n c e i n s e l e c t i v e a t t e n t i o n which was to be a s i g n i f i c a n t f a c t o r i n a study by  S i e g e n t h a l e r and B a r r  found (1967).  They s t u d i e d a u d i t o r y f i g u r e - g r o u n d p e r c e p t i o n i n f i v e groups o f c h i l d r e n , aged f o u r , f i v e , seven, n i n e , and groups was  eleven.  composed o f ten c h i l d r e n of each sex.  Each of  Using  these  the P i c t u r e  I d e n t i f i c a t i o n T e s t on which a c h i l d i s i n s t r u c t e d to p o i n t to s p e c i f i c p i c t u r e s , they determined each c h i l d ' s speech r e c e p t i o n t h r e s h o l d under q u i e t and n o i s e c o n d i t i o n s .  A tape r e c o r d i n g of a man  was  r e - r e c o r d e d seven times  and  then p l a y e d backward as the n o i s e c o n d i t i o n .  of  v a r i a t i o n was  although  not  t h e r e was  found  to produce a b a b b l i n g o f v o i c e s  A s i g n i f i c a n t amount  a s i g n i f i c a n t improvement i n a u d i t o r y  s i x to e l e v e n .  effect  i n g i r l s between the ages of f o u r and  p e r c e p t i o n i n e l e v e n year o l d g i r l s . from age  reading a story  figure  Boys tended to improve s t e a d i l y  At ages f o u r and  ground p e r c e p t i o n o f both sexes was  nine  f i v e , the a u d i t o r y  e q u a l but as age  figure-  i n c r e a s e d , boys  6  tended to perform b e t t e r than  girls.  These f i n d i n g s c o n f l i c t w i t h Marsh (1973) who  tha r e s u l t s o f a r e c e n t study  e x p l o r e d developmental trends i n a u d i t o r y f i g u r e -  ground p e r c e p t i o n w i t h 210  c h i l d r e n from K i n d e r g a r t e n  A u d i t o r y f i g u r e - g r o u n d p e r c e p t i o n was repeat spondee words p r e s e n t e d  t h a t e r r o r s decreased  a significant factor.  She  to grade t h r e e .  t e s t e d by h a v i n g  the s u b j e c t  i n v a r y i n g l e v e l s of white n o i s e  each word had been s u c c e s s f u l l y r e p e a t e d found  as age  p e r c e p t i o n and s c o r e s on  i n c r e a s e d (P<=  .01)  also discovered a s i g n i f i c a n t  the Wide Range Achievement T e s t  had  made more e r r o r s on  Marsh  but sex was  t e s t s were a d m i n i s t e r e d w i t h i n two weeks of each o t h e r . c h i l d r e n who  after  under q u i e t c o n d i t i o n s .  r e l a t i o n s h i p between the r e s u l t s o f t h i s t e s t o f a u d i t o r y  constant,  by  (P<=  not  .01)  figure-ground (WRAT).  Both  With age  held  the a u d i t o r y p e r c e p t i o n  lower s c o r e s on the r e a d i n g , s p e l l i n g and  arithmetic subtests  test of  the WRAT. These s t u d i e s may  have important  educational implications.  p o s s i b l e t h a t some c h i l d r e n , e s p e c i a l l y i n the p r i m a r y difficulty  grades,  l e a r n i n g i n c e r t a i n environments such as open a r e a  have classrooms  because o f some type o f problem f o c u s s i n g on v e r b a l i n s t r u c t i o n s directions while n o i s e and  It is  and  t u n i n g out i r r e l e v a n t background s t i m u l i such as  speech ( P a l m i e r i , 1973).  Studies Related Kingsbury  to Noise L e v e l s i n Classrooms (1973), who  it  i s very d i f f i c u l t  to  reduce ambient n o i s e and  i s an a r c h i t e c t u r a l e n g i n e e r ,  to adequately  s t r e s s e d that  d e s i g n open a r e a s c h o o l s i n o r d e r  i n c r e a s e speech i n t e l l i g i b i l i t y .  Recent  s t u d i e s o f open a r e a c l a s s e s i n B r i t i s h Columbia s c h o o l s i n d i c a t e d t h a t one  o f the most common c r i t i c i s m s o f open areas by t e a c h e r s and  p r i n c i p a l s was the p r e s e n c e o f n o i s e and d i s t r a c t i o n P r i t c h a r d and Moodie, 1971). (1971) compared twelve s c h o o l s and found  ( A l l e n , 1972;  The M e t r o p o l i t a n Toronto  open p l a n s c h o o l s w i t h twelve  that twenty-five percent  School  t r a d i t i o n a l plan  o f the open p l a n  r e p o r t e d n o i s e as a problem whereas a s i m i l a r complaint four percent of t r a d i t i o n a l plan teachers.  Board  teachers  was made by o n l y  I n a b o o k l e t on open p l a n  s c h o o l s p u b l i s h e d by t h i s s c h o o l board, the a d v i c e g i v e n t o new open p l a n t e a c h e r s by e x p e r i e n c e d  open p l a n t e a c h e r s was " t o be aware o f the  h i g h n o i s e l e v e l and t o l e a r n t o i g n o r e i t , o r w i t h s t a n d earplugs  and p l e n t y o f t r a n q u i l i z e r s " was one p o i n t e d  ( M e t r o p o l i t a n Toronto  S c h o o l Board, 1973, page 11)."  i t , - "Take  suggestion Unfortunately,  the b o o k l e t does n o t c o n t a i n any a d v i c e f o r the c h i l d r e n who have d i f f i c u l t y coping w i t h the n o i s e  level.  Ambient n o i s e and d i s t r a c t i o n may have been p a r t i a l l y r e s p o n s i b l e for at  the r e s u l t s o f a study by B e l l and S w i t z e r the end o f the f i r s t  (1973).  grade, c h i l d r e n i n t r a d i t i o n a l  They found  that  classrooms  performed s i g n i f i c a n t l y b e t t e r on a b a t t e r y o f r e a d i n g t e s t s  than  c h i l d r e n i n open a r e a s , even though t h e two groups d i d n o t d i f f e r s i g n i f i c a n t l y i n terms o f i n t e l l i g e n c e o r p e r c e p t u a l s k i l l s a t the beginning  o f the s c h o o l y e a r .  I n the d i s c u s s i o n o f t h e i r r e s u l t s , i t  was s t a t e d : A t e a c h e r must h o l d the a t t e n t i o n o f the c l a s s a g a i n s t c o n s i d e r a b l e d i s t r a c t i o n , thus expending c o n s i d e r a b l e energy u n p r o f i t a b l y . Movements o f c l a s s e s through the a r e a , and r i v a l programmes, o f t e n w i t h sound e f f e c t s , make c o n c e n t r a t i o n d i f f i c u l t f o r the c h i l d r e n , many o f whom have a s h o r t a t t e n t i o n span a t the b e s t o f times.  8  In a d d i t i o n , the t e a c h e r i s s i t u a t i o n which i s probably harmony among s t a f f members or between the t e a c h e r s and S t u d i e s by S l a t e r  placed i n a tension-provoking n o t conducive to a s t a t e o f who must compete f o r a h e a r i n g , the c l a s s (page 25-26).  (1967), C a r t e r and D i a z (1971) , and K a s s i n o v e  (1972) suggest t h a t background n o i s e does n o t a f f e c t c h i l d r e n ' s and t h a t s c h o o l s s h o u l d n o t waste e l i m i n a t e such n o i s e .  learning  t h e i r time and e f f o r t s a t t e m p t i n g t o  S l a t e r t e s t e d s e v e n t h grade c h i l d r e n on the  Reading s u b t e s t o f the S e q u e n t i a l T e s t o f E d u c a t i o n a l P r o g r e s s , under quiet  (45-55 d e c i b e l s ) , average (55-70 d e c i b e l s ) , and n o i s y  decibels) conditions. Reading Comprehension  (75-90  C a r t e r and D i a z t e s t e d s i x t h grade boys on the s u b t e s t o f t h e S t a n f o r d Achievement  c o n d i t i o n s o f low background d i s t r a c t i o n  Test  under  ( s i l e n c e ) , medium background  distraction  (45-55 d e c i b e l s ) , and h i g h background d i s t r a c t i o n  (55-65  decibels).  K a s s i n o v e t e s t e d t h i r d and s i x t h grade c h i l d r e n on w r i t t e n  a r i t h m e t i c tasks under c o n d i t i o n s o f no a u d i t o r y s t i m u l a t i o n , background s t o r i e s , background music, music and s t o r i e s p r e s e n t e d s i m u l t a n e o u s l y but  difficult  to d i s c r i m i n a t e , and music and s t o r i e s p r e s e n t e d  s i m u l t a n e o u s l y b u t e a s i e r to d i s c r i m i n a t e .  In a l l o f these studies,"  i t was found that background n o i s e d i d n o t a f f e c t c h i l d r e n s '  performance.  S l a t e r , who used s e v e n t h grade c h i l d r e n i n h e r s t u d y , and K a s s i n o v e , who used t h i r d and s i x t h grade c h i l d r e n , b o t h g e n e r a l i z e d t h e i r to  results  a l l grade l e v e l s w i t h o u t r e g a r d f o r developmental d i f f e r e n c e s i d i n  attention.  C a r t e r and D i a z used s i x t h grade c h i l d r e n b u t c a u t i o n e d  a g a i n s t g e n e r a l i z i n g t h e i r r e s u l t s to c h i l d r e n i n p r i m a r y grades. In  these t h r e e s t u d i e s , r e a d i n g o r a r i t h m e t i c t a s k s were used as  dependent v a r i a b l e s .  T h i s suggests t h a t t h e a b i l i t y  previously learned s k i l l s ,  t o make use o f  i n the p r e s e n c e o f v a r y i n g degrees o f back-  9 ground n o i s e was b e i n g measured.  I f t h e s u b j e c t s had been r e q u i r e d t o  l e a r n some type o f new- s k i l l under the v a r i o u s t e s t i n g c o n d i t i o n s , the background n o i s e may have had a more d e t r i m e n t a l e f f e c t on t h e i r performances.  On the b a s i s o f the r e s u l t s o f t h e i r s t u d i e s , these  r e s e a r c h e r s have i m p l i e d t h a t background n o i s e does n o t i n t e r f e r e  with  c h i l d r e n ' s l e a r n i n g even though they have made no attempt to measure the e f f e c t s o f t h i s background n o i s e on t h e speech i n t e l l i g i b i l i t y o f teachers  g i v i n g v e r b a l i n s t r u c t i o n s to students.  I n o r d e r t o determine  what e f f e c t background n o i s e does have on speech communication i n t h e classroom  situation,  i t would be n e c e s s a r y  to i n v e s t i g a t e the ' s i g n a l -  to n o i s e r a t i o ' w h i c h i s " t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p between the i n t e n s i t y o f the speech and the i n t e n s i t y o f the n o i s e " (Newby, 1972, page 275).  S p e c i f i c Learning D i f f i c u l t i e s Related Perception In Kassinove's  to A u d i t o r y  Figure-Ground  (1972) study, each c h i l d was observed  one way m i r r o r w h i l e he o r she was b e i n g t e s t e d . o b s e r v a t i o n s suggested  through a  These b e h a v i o u r a l  t h a t t h e e f f e c t s o f background n o i s e seemed t o  be r e l a t e d t o i n d i v i d u a l d i f f e r e n c e s i n c h i l d r e n . Dykman, Ackerman, Clements, and Peterss(1971) disabilities  a r e a t t e n t i o n a l d e f i c i t s which r e s u l t  suggest  t h a t many l e a r n i n g  from d e f e c t i v e  i n h i b i t i o n i n the c o r t e x o f the n e u r o l o g i c a l l y immature c h i l d . (1973) s a i d t h a t some c h i l d r e n a r e " s t u c k " b e i n g r e s p o n s i v e  Kinsbourne  to a l l  s t i m u l i because o f a m a t u r a t i o n a l l a g i n t h e i r a b i l i t y t o f o c u s . Rabinovitch  (1972) suggested  t h a t problems w i t h a u d i t o r y  p e r c e p t i o n may r e s u l t from l a c k o f sensory childhood.  figure-ground  stimulation i n early  10  Whether these a t t e n t i o n a l problems are p h y s i o l o g i c a l l y environmentally induced,  there a r e c h i l d r e n who  a s s i s t a n c e because o f t h e i r apparent a u d i t o r y and v i s u a l s t i m u l a t i o n . d i a g n o s t i c measures are  appear to need to cope w i t h  remedial  excessive  In o r d e r to i d e n t i f y these  children,  necessary.  D i a g n o s i s of A u d i t o r y Figure-Ground S p e c i f i c behaviours suspected  inability  and/or  which may  P e r c e p t i o n Problems be observed  i n c h i l d r e n who  are  of h a v i n g an a u d i t o r y f i g u r e - g r o u n d p e r c e p t i o n problem are  l i s t e d by Mann and S u i t e r  (1974):  1. The student may e x h i b i t f o r c e d a t t e n t i o n to sound c a u s i n g him to a t t e n d to extraneous n o i s e s i n h i s environment. 2.  He may  f i n d i t d i f f i c u l t to a t t e n d to speech.  3. By comparison to o t h e r s t u d e n t s , he may not be a b l e to s i t f o r l o n g p e r i o d s o f time. He may appear to be d i s t r a c t a b l e and h y p e r a c t i v e . 4. of  The t e a c h e r may the t e a c h e r next  f i n d t h a t the student door.  obeys the commands  5. He may not be a b l e to focus h i s a t t e n t i o n on h i s own work and may tend to i n t e r f e r e when the teacher i s working w i t h another s t u d e n t , (page 70). Nober (1973) a d m i n i s t e r e d to  t h i r t e e n normal, t h i r t e e n speech d e f e c t i v e , and  retarded children She  the Wepman A u d i t o r y D i s c r i m i n a t i o n T e s t  found  (ages 5.1  a statistically  - 7.11)  thirteen  reading  under q u i e t and n o i s e c o n d i t i o n s .  s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e f o r the normal and  r e a d i n g r e t a r d e d groups, (>.01  l e v e l ) between the number o f e r r o r s made  i n a q u i e t t e s t room as compared to the number o f e r r o r s made i n the same t e s t room w i t h taped c l a s s r o o m n o i s e p l a y i n g i n the background. When the s c o r e s f o r each t e s t i n g c o n d i t i o n were compared u s i n g a d j u s t e d Wepman p a s s - f a i l s c o r e s which take age  the  into consideration,  11 t h e r e was a s t a t i s t i c a l l y retarded  s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e f o r the reading  group.  On the b a s i s o f these r e s u l t s , Nober q u e s t i o n e d t e s t , which was s t a n d a r d i z e d  whether the Wepman  under q u i e t t e s t i n g c o n d i t i o n s , was a  v a l i d measure o f a c h i l d ' s a u d i t o r y d i s c r i m i n a t i o n a b i l i t y under normal classroom  c o n d i t i o n s where f o r m a l l e a r n i n g i s to take p l a c e .  she makes no mention o f a u d i t o r y f i g u r e - g r o u n d  Although  p e r c e p t i o n , i t would  appear that t h i s i s the s p e c i f i c a u d i t o r y p e r c e p t u a l s k i l l which she b e l i e v e s should be measured. One s t a n d a r d i z e d figure-ground  t e s t which can be used to a s s e s s  an a u d i t o r y  p e r c e p t i o n problem i s the Goldman-Fristoe-Woodcock T e s t  of A u d i t o r y D i s c r i m i n a t i o n (GFWT).  T h i s t e s t was designed  a measure o f a u d i t o r y d i s c r i m i n a t i o n under i d e a l l i s t e n i n g  to " p r o v i d e conditions  p l u s a comparative measure o f a u d i t o r y d i s c r i m i n a t i o n i n the p r e s e n c e of c o n t r o l l e d background n o i s e C h a l f a n t and F l a t h o u s e questions  (Goldman e t a l . , 1970, page 4 ) . "  (1971; page 265) suggest t h a t the f o l l o w i n g  should be c o n s i d e r e d  i n an i n v e s t i g a t i o n o f f i g u r e - g r o u n d  perception: 1. I s h e a r i n g o r v i s u a l a c u i t y a f a c t o r ? 2. Does the c h i l d understand what he i s to do? 3. Has the f i g u r e s t i m u l u s been c l e a r l y i d e n t i f i e d ? 4. I s the f i g u r e s t i m u l u s meaningful? 5. Are the background s t i m u l i meaningful? 6. What i s the s t r e n g t h ( i n t e n s i t y ) o f the background stimuli? Of the f i g u r e s t i m u l i ? 7. How many s t i m u l i a r e i n v o l v e d ( c o m p l e x i t y ) ? 8. How many times has a s i m i l a r f i g u r e - g r o u n d c o n d i t i o n been presented? Were the c h i l d ' s responses c o n s i s t e n t ? 9. I s f a t i g u e a f a c t o r ? 10. Are f i g u r e and/or background s t i m u l i p r e s e n t e d simultaneously or successively? 11. What happens i f the c h i l d responds a p p r o p r i a t e l y ? Inappropriately?  12  In  o r d e r to j u s t i f y tlie use o f t h e GFWT as a measure o f a u d i t o r y  f i g u r e - g r o u n d p e r c e p t i o n , C h a l f a n t and F l a t h o u s e ' s q u e s t i o n s can be answered i n t h e f o l l o w i n g manner. 1. H e a r i n g and v i s u a l a c u i t y s h o u l d be w i t h i n normal l i m i t s i n o r d e r to  make a p p r o p r i a t e use o f t h i s  test.  2. D i r e c t i o n s a r e c l e a r l y p r e s e n t e d on audio  tape.  3. The f i g u r e s t i m u l i a r e common E n g l i s h words. 4. A l l words used  as f i g u r e s t i m u l i a r e reviewed  and/or taught to  the c h i l d b e f o r e f o r m a l t e s t i n g b e g i n s . 5. The background s t i m u l i a r e r e c o r d e d environmental school  sounds from a  cafeteria.  6. The background s t i m u l i a r e n i n e d e c i b e l s l e s s i n t e n s e than t h e figure stimuli;  the s t r e n g t h o f the f i g u r e s t i m u l u s i s 60 to 70 d e c i b e l s .  7. One f i g u r e s t i m u l u s i s p r e s e n t e d a t a time. 8. The f i g u r e ground c o n d i t i o n i s p r e s e n t e d t h i r t y  times;  C o n s i s t e n c y o f responses  depends on t h e c h i l d .  9. The t e s t i n g procedure  o n l y takes seven and o n e - h a l f minutes so i t  i s u n l i k e l y t h a t f a t i g u e would be a f a c t o r w i t h most c h i l d r e n . 10. F i g u r e s t i m u l i a r e p r e s e n t e d s i m u l t a n e o u s l y w i t h the background s timuli. 11. The c h i l d does n o t r e c e i v e feedback his  as to the a p p r o p r i a t e n e s s o f  responses. The o n l y a v a i l a b l e data r e g a r d i n g r e l i a b i l i t y  GFWT i s r e p o r t e d i n the t e s t manual. for  and v a l i d i t y  Test-retest r e l i a b i l i t i e s  f o r the o f .87  the q u i e t s u b t e s t and .81 f o r the n o i s e s u b t e s t and s p l i t - h a l f  reliabilities  o f .87 f o r the q u i e t s u b t e s t and .68 f o r the n o i s e  13 s u b t e s t are r e p o r t e d .  To determine the v a l i d i t y o f t h e t e s t , GFWT  s c o r e s were c o r r e l a t e d w i t h t h e judgments o f e x p e r t group o f e i g h t e e n  clinicians for a  s u b j e c t s r e c e i v i n g speech therapy.  The r e s u l t i n g  c o e f f i c i e n t s o f .68 f o r the q u i e t s u b t e s t and .72 f o r the s u b t e s t were used as evidence The  GFWT was s t a n d a r d i z e d  three t o e i g h t y - f o u r .  o f v a l i d i t y by the t e s t on 745 s u b j e c t s r a n g i n g  noise  authors. i n age from  The developmental t r e n d i n a u d i t o r y  figure-ground  p e r c e p t i o n n o t e d i n the s t u d i e s o f Marsh (1973), Doyle (1973), and Maccoby and Konrad sample.  (1966) was a l s o observed i n t h i s s t a n d a r d i z a t i o n  The t e s t authors  also report sex d i f f e r e n c e s but claim that  they are " o f s m a l l magnitude and thus, i t i s a p p r o p r i a t e s i n g l e s e t o f norms f o r b o t h male and female s u b j e c t s On  (page  16)."  the GFWT, s t i m u l u s words on the q u i e t and n o i s e s u b t e s t s a r e  presented  on audio  tape and the s u b j e c t has t o choose one o f f o u r  p i c t u r e s which corresponds to the word he h e a r s . new  t o use a  s e l e c t i o n of four p i c t u r e s presented  on a s e p a r a t e p l a t e .  s u b j e c t ' s performance i s above the t w e n t i e t h both subtests, according  Each word has a  t o t h i r t i e t h p e r c e n t i l e on  t o the norms, i t i s concluded  a u d i t o r y d i s c r i m i n a t i o n s k i l l s a r e adequate.  If a  that h i s  I f he s c o r e s above t h i s  c u t - o f f p o i n t on the q u i e t s u b t e s t , b u t below i t on the n o i s e  subtest,  then i t i s i n t e r p r e t e d t h a t he f u n c t i o n s p o o r l y on a u d i t o r y d i s c r i m i n a t i o n in a difficult no h e a r i n g  listening situation.  Given the c o n d i t i o n t h a t t h e r e i s  l o s s , i f he performs below the t w e n t i e t h  p e r c e n t i l e on both s u b t e s t s , then the t e s t authors  to t h i r t i e t h suggest t h a t he has  an a u d i t o r y d i s c r i m i n a t i o n problem and may a l s o have d i f f i c u l t y i n a l i s t e n i n g s i t u a t i o n with  competing a u d i t o r y s i g n a l s .  14 Remediation of A u d i t o r y Figure-Ground P e r c e p t i o n Problems Once d i f f i c u l t i e s w i t h a u d i t o r y f i g u r e - g r o u n d p e r c e p t i o n have been i d e n t i f i e d , attempts can be made to remediate them.  Mann and S u i t e r  (1974) make the f o l l o w i n g g e n e r a l recommendations f o r c h i l d r e n s u s p e c t e d of h a v i n g an a u d i t o r y f i g u r e - g r o u n d p e r c e p t i o n problem: 1. The t e a c h e r s h o u l d p r o v i d e a p l a c e t h a t i s r e a s o n a b l y q u i e t where the student can get o f f by h i m s e l f f o r p a r t s o f the day. 2. He s h o u l d not s e a t the student by noisy a i r conditioner.  the window, door, or  3. He can h e l p him s e l e c t r e l e v a n t from i r r e l e v a n t sounds i n his- environment w i t h h i s eyes c l o s e d , then w i t h h i s eyes open. 4. He can use tapes o r r e c o r d s to h e l p the student b u i l d i n sound s e l e c t i v i t y (ear phones can be used to s c r e e n out distraction). 5. Drugs under s t r i c t  s u p e r v i s i o n may  help.  6. The t e a c h e r s h o u l d r e g u l a t e the r a t e of i n p u t a c c o r d i n g l y . Going slower makes a d i f f e r e n c e . 7. He can c o n d i t i o n the student by i n t r o d u c i n g sound i n t o environment on a s e l e c t i v e b a s i s . (Page 70-71). In a d d i t i o n , t h e r e are many o t h e r sources to a s s i s t t e a c h e r s i n d e v e l o p i n g children  ( C h a l f a n t and  Flathouse,  M a t e r i a l s of Chicago has  suggestions  r e m e d i a l programmes f o r these 1971).  a commercially  T r a i n i n g K i t which i n c l u d e s audio  of s p e c i f i c  the  tapes  Developmental L e a r n i n g produced A u d i t o r y  Perception  to remediate a u d i t o r y  figure-  ground p e r c e p t i o n problems. To i n v e s t i g a t e the e f f e c t i v e n e s s of r e m e d i a l figure-ground perception s k i l l s , Marascuilo conducted an experiment u s i n g t h e i r own b e l i e v e d that c h i l d r e n who  and P e n f i e l d (1972)  taped  d i d not know how  t r a i n i n g of a u d i t o r y  training materials.  They  to f i l t e r out background  n o i s e were at a tremendous e d u c a t i o n a l disadvantage  because,  "without  15  doubt, t h e degree o f success t h a t a student has i n l e a r n i n g newm a t e r i a l s i s d i r e c t l y r e l a t e d t o h i s a b i l i t y t o r e c e i v e and t r a n s m i t messages by o r a l communication s k i l l s In  t h i s study, second,  (page 5 ) . "  f i f t h , e i g h t h and e l e v e n t h grade  students  were exposed to audio tape r e c o r d e d r e m e d i a l m a t e r i a l designed to improve t h e i r l i s t e n i n g s k i l l s i n the presence o f background n o i s e . They found t h a t t h i s r e m e d i a l t r a i n i n g was e f f e c t i v e w i t h the second grade  c h i l d r e n b u t n o t w i t h the o t h e r  groups.  Summary A l l o f t h i s i n f o r m a t i o n r a i s e s many q u e s t i o n s r e g a r d i n g the educational implications of auditory figure-ground perception. schools d i r e c t a great deal o f e f f o r t  towards the i d e n t i f i c a t i o n and  r e m e d i a t i o n o f these s u s p e c t e d problems, essential.  Attempts  Before  a d d i t i o n a l research i s  must be made to determine what e f f e c t s a u d i t o r y  f i g u r e - g r o u n d p e r c e p t i o n problems have on academic achievement and whether s p e c i f i c l e a r n i n g environments  impede the l e a r n i n g p r o c e s s  i n c h i l d r e n w i t h t h i s type o f d i f f i c u l t y . designed as an attempt  The p r e s e n t study has been  to i n v e s t i g a t e these a r e a s .  16  CHAPTER .2 HYPOTHESIS AND  OPERATIONAL DEFINITIONS  In Chapter 1, a review o f s t u d i e s r e l a t e d to a u d i t o r y  figure-  ground p e r c e p t i o n i n d i c a t e d t h a t c h i l d r e n do d i f f e r i n t h e i r  ability  to d i s c r i m i n a t e between f i g u r e and background a u d i t o r y s t i m u l i .  The  p o s s i b i l i t y of d i f f e r e n c e s i n the amount o f background n o i s e i n various classroom  environments was  also discussed.  the c h i l d r e n w i t h a u d i t o r y f i g u r e - g r o u n d difficulty  I t was  suggested  p e r c e p t i o n problems have  f u n c t i o n i n g i n l e a r n i n g s i t u a t i o n s which have an  excessive  amount of background a u d i t o r y s t i m u l a t i o n .  Hypothesis Based on these s t u d i e s , i t i s h y p o t h e s i z e d c h i l d r e n have w i t h a u d i t o r y f i g u r e - g r o u n d they are to achieve i n s e l f contained  academic success  classrooms,  that the more d i f f i c u l t y  p e r c e p t i o n , the l e s s  i n open a r e a classrooms;  problems w i t h a u d i t o r y  p e r c e p t i o n w i l l have l e s s e f f e c t on academic  likely whereas,  figure-ground  success.  Assumptions In o r d e r f o r t h i s h y p o t h e s i s  to be  tested, i t i s necessary  to  i n v e s t i g a t e the f o l l o w i n g assumptions: 1. The  subjects  (Ss) used i n t h i s study  came from a p o p u l a t i o n  s i m i l a r to the normative p o p u l a t i o n of the GFWT, and 2. The  grade one  open, a r e a classrooms used i n t h i s study have a  17  h i g h e r n o i s e l e v e l than the s e l f c o n t a i n e d  classrooms.  Operational Definitions. A u d i t o r y f i g u r e - g r o u n d p e r c e p t i o n r e f e r s to the a b i l i t y on r e l e v a n t a s p e c t s o f the a u d i t o r y f i e l d and "tune o u t " background s t i m u l i .  The  to focus  irrelevant  t e s t used to measure t h i s a b i l i t y i s the  Goldman-Fristoe-Woodcock T e s t of A u d i t o r y D i s c r i m i n a t i o n which has s u b t e s t s - one  under n o i s e c o n d i t i o n s and one  Academic success Primary  two  under q u i e t c o n d i t i o n s .  i s measured by t h r e e s u b t e s t s of the  Cooperative  T e s t - r e a d i n g , l i s t e n i n g and mathematics.  S e l f c o n t a i n e d c l a s s r o o m r e f e r s to a c o n v e n t i o n a l l e a r n i n g environment w i t h approximately  twenty—five students  andoone t e a c h e r  i n a s t a n d a r d s i z e d room. Open a r e a c l a s s r o o m r e f e r s to a l a r g e l e a r n i n g environment c o n t a i n i n g two,  t h r e e , o r f o u r c l a s s e s , each w i t h approximately  twenty-  f i v e s t u d e n t s and a t e a c h e r . Noise L e v e l .  The n o i s e l e v e l data were c o l l e c t e d by  the r e a d i n g s on a d e c i b e l meter f o r approximately each o f ten d i f f e r e n t areas of each c l a s s r o o m .  f i f t e e n seconds i n  D u r i n g each  second o b s e r v a t i o n , the upper extreme n o i s e l e v e l , n o i s e l e v e l , and  observing  the lower  the mean n o i s e l e v e l were r e c o r d e d .  fifteen extreme  The d e c i b e l  r e a d i n g s were taken once i n the morning and once i n the a f t e r n o o n two  c o n s e c u t i v e days f o r each c l a s s  (Chew and McLean, 1974).  on  18  D e l i m i t a t i o n o f the T h i s s t u d y was  Study r e s t r i c t e d t o E n g l i s h s p e a k i n g grade one  children  i n e i t h e r open a r e a o r s e l f c o n t a i n e d c l a s s e s l o c a t e d w i t h i n the Vancouver s c h o o l d i s t r i c t .  J u s t i f i c a t i o n o f the  Study  I f the h y p o t h e s i s i s supported by the r e s u l t s o f t h i s  study,  p o s s i b l y the GFWT might be u s e f u l as a s c r e e n i n g i n s t r u m e n t whether grade one  c h i l d r e n who  determine  have d i f f i c u l t y w i t h a u d i t o r y f i g u r e -  ground p e r c e p t i o n are more a p p r o p r i a t e l y a s s i g n e d to s e l f o r open a r e a c l a s s r o o m s .  to  Thereby,  i t may  contained  be p o s s i b l e to p r e v e n t  the  l e a r n i n g and/or b e h a v i o u r problems w h i c h can r e s u l t from e x p o s i n g a c h i l d to a l e a r n i n g environment  w i t h w h i c h he has  difficulty  coping.  19  CHAPTER 3 METHOD  Design In o r d e r t o o b t a i n d a t a b e a r i n g on t h e h y p o t h e s i s , a n o n - e q u i v a l e n t c o n t r o l group d e s i g n was used  (Campbell  and S t a n l e y , Design  10, 1963).  (See F i g u r e 1 ) . An e x p e r i m e n t a l group o f grade one s u b j e c t s (Ss) was randomly s e l e c t e d from open a r e a c l a s s e s and a c o n t r o l group from s e l f classes. one  contained  To p r o v i d e s t a t i s t i c a l c o n t r o l f o r p o s s i b l e b e g i n n i n g  grade  achievement l e v e l i n r e a d i n g , a r i t h m e t i c , and s p e l l i n g , the Wide  Range Achievement T e s t (WRAT) was a d m i n i s t e r e d i n d i v i d u a l l y t o each S_ i n September o r October.  I n January  o r F e b r u a r y , t h e Goldman-Fristoe-  Woodcock T e s t o f A u d i t o r y D i s c r i m i n a t i o n (GFWT) was a d m i n i s t e r e d to p r o v i d e a measure o f each S/ s a b i l i t y presence  t o d i s c r i m i n a t e sounds i n t h e  o f c o n t r o l l e d background n o i s e .  In A p r i l ,  the C o o p e r a t i v e  Primary T e s t (CPT) was a d m i n i s t e r e d to p r o v i d e a measure o f each S_'s academic p r o g r e s s i n a r i t h m e t i c , r e a d i n g and l i s t e n i n g  Sampling  skills.  Procedure  O r i g i n a l l y , 12 S_s from each o f f o u r open areaaand  four s e l f  c o n t a i n e d grade one c l a s s e s were randomly s e l e c t e d from a p o o l o f S_s whose p a r e n t s gave t h e i r w r i t t e n p e r m i s s i o n f o r t h e i r p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n the study. selection  A t a b l e o f random numbers was used ( M a r a s c u i l o , 1971).  to make the random  S h o r t l y a f t e r t h i s s e l e c t i o n was made,  Open Area  |  *°1  °3  ^/\  ^/\  °2 Self-contained  I September or October 1973  *P 0^:  WRAT  0-0.: 3 4 0 O,: 5 6  GFWT  1  C  °5 ^V /_  °4  °6  V  A  January or February 1974  CPT  Figure 1 E x p e r i m e n t a l Design  April 1974  21 i t was  d i s c o v e r e d t h a t one  Initial  Teaching Alphabet  of the open a r e a c l a s s e s was  using  approach to r e a d i n g which would have a f f e c t e d  these S_* s performance on the s t a n d a r d i z e d r e a d i n g t e s t s . and  i t s c o n t r o l c l a s s were e l i m i n a t e d from the study and  Ss i n each o f the remaining s i x t e e n per  the  c l a s s e s was  This  class  the number o f  i n c r e a s e d from twelve  to  class.  From January  to A p r i l ,  ten Ss had  to be e l i m i n a t e d from the  because they had e i t h e r moved to another i l l n e s s d u r i n g one o f the f o l l o w - u p remained i n the  s c h o o l or had  test periods.  study  a lengthy  E i g h t y - s i x Ss  study.  Subjects S_s were s e l e c t e d from open a r e a and c l a s s e s i n Vancouver s c h o o l s .  s e l f contained f i r s t  grade  In c o n s u l t a t i o n w i t h the Vancouver  S c h o o l Board's r e s e a r c h department, t h r e e s c h o o l s w i t h p r i m a r y areas were nominated and  open  c o n t r o l s c h o o l s were chosen because o f  p h y s i c a l p r o x i m i t y to the e x p e r i m e n t a l  schools.  their  I n c l u d e d were s c h o o l s  which are l o c a t e d on both the e a s t and west s i d e s of the c i t y and r e p r e s e n t a f a i r l y wide range o f socio-economic of  a l l S_s gave t h e i r w r i t t e n consent  study.  levels.  The  they  parents  f o r t h e i r p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n the  A c c o r d i n g to t e a c h e r judgement and s c h o o l m e d i c a l  i n c l u d e d whisper t e s t r e s u l t s f o r a l l c h i l d r e n and  cards which  audiometer  test  r e s u l t s f o r some c h i l d r e n , a l l Ss were a b l e to speak E n g l i s h f l u e n t l y and had no obvious h e a r i n g problems. f i v e y e a r s f o u r months to s i x y e a r s s i x y e a r s two  months.  Ages i n September ranged from ten months.  The median age  was  Materials Wide Range Achievement  Test.  The WRAT was a d m i n i s t e r e d  to provide  a g e n e r a l measure o f achievement i n r e a d i n g , s p e l l i n g , and a r i t h m e t i c . A t e s t c o v e r i n g a l l grade l e v e l s was chosen because i t was expected that beginning  grade one c h i l d r e n would be f u n c t i o n i n g a t many d i f f e r e n t  l e v e l s depending upon f a c t o r s such as t h e f l e x i b i l i t y g a r t e n programme and p a r e n t a l t u t o r i n g . measure o f alphabet  of their  Kinder-  The r e a d i n g s u b t e s t i n c l u d e s a  naming which has been found to be one o f the b e s t  s i n g l e p r e d i c t o r s o f r e a d i n g r e a d i n e s s i n many s t u d i e s ( L o w e l l , 1971). Available r e l i a b i l i t y  and v a l i d i t y data support  WRAT as a g e n e r a l measure o f achievement.  the use o f the  A United States n a t i o n a l  h e a l t h s u r v e y c o r r e l a t e d the WRAT r e a d i n g and a r i t h m e t i c s c o r e s f o r 2,500 c h i l d r e n a t a l l grade l e v e l s w i t h  the S t a n f o r d and M e t r o p o l i t a n  Achievement T e s t s and concluded t h a t the WRAT was a " s a t i s f a c t o r y e s t i m a t e o f s c h o o l achievement Reger  brief  (Nat. Cent, f o r H e a l t h S t a t . , 1967)."  (1962) r e p o r t e d a c o r r e l a t i o n o f .76 between t h e WRAT r e a d i n g and  a r i t h m e t i c s c o r e s and the M e t r o p o l i t a n Achievement T e s t .  A correlation  c o e f f i c i e n t o f .92 between t h e WRAT r e a d i n g s u b t e s t and the Gray O r a l Reading T e s t was r e p o r t e d by Lawson and A v i l a and O l d r i d g e  (19 72).  Hopkins, Dobson  (1962) c o r r e l a t e d WRAT s c o r e s w i t h t e a c h e r r a t i n g s and  r e p o r t e d c o n c u r r e n t v a l i d i t y c o e f f i c i e n t s fronF=.74 t o .86 f o r 502 c h i l d r e n i n grades one t o f i v e .  They a l s o r e p o r t e d  correlation  c o e f f i c i e n t s o f .86 and .71 between t h e WRAT and the C a l i f o r n i a Reading V o c a b u l a r y and Comprehension for  tests.  Split-half reliability  coefficients  the r e a d i n g , s p e l l i n g , and a r i t h m e t i c s u b t e s t s were .98 t o .99,  .96 to .98, and .94 to .97 r e s p e c t i v e l y , a c c o r d i n g t o J a s t a k and J a s t a k  (1965) and  .98,  .99,  Salopek (1971). of  .88  to .93,  and  .98 r e s p e c t i v e l y i n a study by Sundeau and  J a s t a k and J a s t a k r e p o r t a l t e r n a t e form .88  to .93,  and  .79  reliabilities  to . 89 f o r the r e a d i n g , s p e l l i n g  and  arithmetic subtests respectively. GoIdman-Fristoe-Woodcock T e s t of A u d i t o r y D i s c r i m i n a t i o n . The  GFWT was  The  justification  validity  administered  data was  to measure a u d i t o r y f i g u r e - g r o u n d p e r c e p t i o n .  f o r the use o f t h i s  t e s t and  The  r e a d i n g , mathematics,  l i s t e n i n g s u b t e s t s of the CPT were a d m i n i s t e r e d measure o f academic achievement. and  and  p r e s e n t e d w i t h the r e l a t e d r e s e a r c h on pages 13 to  C o o p e r a t i v e Primary T e s t s .  understanding  the r e l i a b i l i t y  skills  and  to p r o v i d e a  These t e s t s were designed  follow-up to  "survey  c o n s i d e r e d b a s i c to f u t u r e development" i n  r e a d i n g , mathematics and l i s t e n i n g  (CPT Handbook, 1967,  A c c o r d i n g to the t e s t a u t h o r s , one  o f the o b j e c t i v e s i n d e s i g n i n g  t e s t was  to p r o v i d e academic measures which would be  independent o f d i f f e r e n t t e a c h i n g t e c h n i q u e s .  page 6 ) .  The  this  relatively  T h i s makes the  a p p r o p r i a t e f o r the p r e s e n t study because o f the number of s c h o o l s , c l a s s e s , and  15.  CPT  different  teachers i n v o l v e d .  CP.T HanHbook i n c l u d e s i t e m a n a l y s i s data f o r each s u b t e s t  and  the content v a l i d i t y has been d e s c r i b e d as " o u t s t a n d i n g " by Hanna (1972) i n h i s review of the t e s t i n the Seventh Mental Measurements Yearbook. The median i n t e r n a l c o n s i s t e n c y c o e f f i c i e n t s were .90 for  mathematics, and  c o e f f i c i e n t s were .85 listening.  .81  for l i s t e n i n g .  f o r r e a d i n g , .82  The  for reading,  a l t e r n a t e form  f o r mathematics and  .83  reliability .76  for  24  Apparatus A Sony TC106 tape r e c o r d e r with, two s e t s o f h i g h f i d e l i t y  Hosiden  earphones were used f o r the GFWT. A B r u e l and K j a e r Sound L e v e l Meter, Type 2205 f i t t e d w i t h a p i e z o e l e c t r i c microphone, Type 4117 i n each  was used t o measure the n o i s e  levels  classroom.  Procedure In September and October, the WRAT was a d m i n i s t e r e d  individually  to each S_ a c c o r d i n g t o the d i r e c t i o n s i n the t e s t manual.  The Ss were  a l l t e s t e d by the same examiner i n q u i e t rooms i n t h e i r own s c h o o l s . In January and February,  the GFWT was a d m i n i s t e r e d  i n d i v i d u a l l y to  each ^ a c c o r d i n g to the d i r e c t i o n s i n the t e s t manual, u s i n g the r e c o r d e r and earphones.  tape  A l l S_s were t e s t e d by the same examiner i n  the rooms used f o r the WRAT t e s t i n g . In A p r i l ,  the CPT was a d m i n i s t e r e d  the d i r e c t i o n s i n the t e s t manual. three separate  as a group t e s t a c c o r d i n g t o  The t e s t i n g was c a r r i e d out i n  s e s s i o n s , w i t h each group b e i n g  t e s t e d i n t h e i r own  s c h o o l by the same examiner. In May and June, the ambient n o i s e l e v e l i n each c l a s s was compared u s i n g a sound l e v e l meter on a time sampling  basis.  The f o l l o w i n g  p r o c e d u r a l d e s c r i p t i o n has been e x t r a c t e d from the r e p o r t ^ o f Chew and McLean (1974) who were r e s p o n s i b l e f o r c o l l e c t i n g these  data:  Measurements were made d u r i n g the s c h o o l day a t random times throughout the morning and the a f t e r n o o n . Each c l a s s r o o m was surveyed f o u r times, twice a day (once i n the morning and once i n the afternoon) f o r two c o n s e c u t i v e days. ...Each room was v i s u a l l y d i v i d e d i n t o a g r i d , c u t t i n g up  25 the f l o o r s u r f a c e a r e a i n t o t e n squares o f a p p r o x i m a t e l y equal area. The a c t u a l l o c a t i o n p o s i t i o n i n g o f the i n s t r u m e n t v a r i e d from room t o room and from v i s i t t o v i s i t i n a g i v e n room, due to movement o f s t u d e n t s and positioning of furniture. ...One s e t o f r e a d i n g s was taken i n t h e c e n t r e o f each o f t h e ten g r i d s . Each s e t c o n s i s t e d o f 30 r e a d i n g s o f the n o i s e l e v e l i n dBA u s i n g the SLOW meter response. T h i s was done by o b s e r v i n g t h e sound l e v e l meter n e e d l e f o r no l e s s than 15 seconds and v i s u a l l y e s t i m a t i n g the mean v a l u e , t o g e t h e r w i t h b o t h the capper and lower extremes and r e p e a t i n g the whole p r o c e s s 10 times f o r each g r i d . S i n c e t h e r e were 10 such g r i d s p e r room a t o t a l o f 30 r e a d i n g s were taken. (Chew and McLean, 1974, page 6-8). Statistical  Analyses  Assumption 1;  A c h i - s q u a r e t e s t was used  t o determine  whether a  s t a t i s t i c a l l y s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e e x i s t e d between t h e d i s t r i b u t i o n of  s c o r e s on t h e s u b t e s t s o f the GFWT f o r the sample used i n t h i s  study and the normative who  population.  S i n c e most o f the n i n e t y - o n e Ss  were g i v e n the GFWT were between 6-0 and 6-11 a t the time o f  t e s t i n g , o n l y these S_s were used f o r comparison purposes.  Forty-five  _Ss were compared to the t e s t norms f o r c h i l d r e n r a n g i n g i n age from 6-0  t o 6-5 and t h i r t y - e i g h t Ss were compared t o t h e t e s t norms f o r  c h i l d r e n r a n g i n g i n age from 6-6 to 6-11. Assumption 2:  I n o r d e r to t e s t t h e assumption  t h a t open a r e a  have a h i g h e r n o i s e l e v e l than the s e l f - c o n t a i n e d classrooms, were performed  t-tests  on the d a t a from the d e c i b e l r e a d i n g s u s i n g the  S t a t i s t i c a l Package f o r the S o c i a l S c i e n c e s Separate  classrooms  a n a l y s e s were performed  ( K i t a and Morley,  1973b).  f o r the mean, upper extreme, and lower  extreme d e c i b e l r e a d i n g s i n the a f t e r n o o n s . Hypothesis:  I n o r d e r t o t e s t the h y p o t h e s i s  t h a t the more d i f f i c u l t y  c h i l d r e n i n open a r e a classrooms had w i t h a u d i t o r y f i g u r e - g r o u h d  26 p e r c e p t i o n as measured by the GFWT, the lower t h e i r achievement would be on the CPT, a stepwise was  used.  scores  m u l t i p l e r e g r e s s i o n a n a l y s i s procedure  The advantages o f u s i n g t h i s data a n a l y s i s technique  been d i s c u s s e d e x t e n s i v e l y b y authors S p i e g e l , 1970; and Walberg, 1971.  such as Cohen, 1968;  have  O v e r a l l and  T h i s approach was p a r t i c u l a r l y  a p p r o p r i a t e f o r t h i s study because i t a l l o w s f o r t h e t e s t i n g o f the e f f e c t s o f continuous  v a r i a b l e s without  a r b i t r a r y groups which i s n e c e s s a r y The  stepwise  i n analysis of variance.  a n a l y s i s i n v o l v e s an _a p r i o r i o r d e r i n g o f t h e  independent v a r i a b l e s . adjusted  the n e c e s s i t y o f making  Estimates  o f each independent v a r i a b l e a r e  f o r the e f f e c t s p r e c e d i n g  the terms which f o l l o w i t .  terms i n the o r d e r i n g but n o t f o r  Separate stepwise  a n a l y s e s were performed  f o r each o f the t h r e e dependent v a r i a b l e s , u s i n g t h e d a t a from the GFWT n o i s e s u b t e s t as oneooftlfche independent v a r i a b l e s and the WRAT s c o r e s as a c o v a r i a t e . In o r d e r t o determine whether t h e r e was any r e l a t i o n s h i p between performance on the GFWT q u i e t s u b t e s t and the dependent v a r i a b l e s , separate  a n a l y s e s were c a r r i e d out, i d e n t i c a l t o t h e a n a l y s e s  described  above except t h a t the s c o r e s on the q u i e t s u b t e s t were s u b s t i t u t e d f o r the s c o r e s on the n o i s e The  subtest.  r e g r e s s i o n a n a l y s e s were performed u s i n g the  r e g r e s s i o n programme (Halm, 1972).  stepwise  The p r o b a b i l i t y l e v e l s  s i g n i f i c a n c e were c a l c u l a t e d u s i n g the f o l l o w i n g  (p) f o r  formula:  2 •p ( d f s , dfe)  =  ~ R /df source SS e r r o r / d f e r r o r ( O v e r a l l and S p i e g e l , 1970).  27 P o s t Hoc A n a l y s e s : to  Some p o s t hoc a n a l y s i s o f the data was c a r r i e d o u t  f u r t h e r i n v e s t i g a t e s i g n i f i c a n t i n t e r a c t i o n s r e s u l t i n g from the  multiple regression analyses. The UBC FREQ computer programme to  p l o t histograms  o f observed  s u b t e s t o f the GFWT. meaningful  ( K i t a and M o r l e y ,  f r e q u e n c i e s o f raw s c o r e s on t h e n o i s e  T h i s f a c i l i t a t e d the d i v i s i o n o f the d a t a  groups f o r comparison  into  purposes.  Four groups f o r each c l a s s type were generated The  1973a) was used  i n t h i s manner.  f o u r t h l e v e l groups ( c r i t i c a l ) r e p r e s e n t e d Ss who were f u n c t i o n i n g  in  the c r i t i c a l r e g i o n o f a u d i t o r y f i g u r e ground p e r c e p t i o n a c c o r d i n g  to  the t e s t norms.  classroom of  type  The CPT r e s u l t s f o r the f i r s t  t h r e e groups o f each  ( n o n - c r i t i c a l ) were c o l l a p s e d to a l l o w f o r an a n a l y s i s  c o v a r i a n c e between the c r i t i c a l  WRAT s c o r e s as a c o v a r i a t e .  and n o n - c r i t i c a l groups, u s i n g Tthe  The General L i n e a r Hypothesis  ( B j e r r i n g , G r e i g , and Halm, 1973) was used f o r t h i s  programme  analysis.  28  CHAPTER 4 RESULTS  Initially,  the r e s u l t s r e l a t e d t o t h e assumptions a r e p r e s e n t e d ,  f o l l o w e d by a s t a t i s t i c a l d e s c r i p t i o n o f the sample used i n t h i s The r e s u l t s o f the m u l t i p l e r e g r e s s i o n a n a l y s e s used hypothesis are presented next.  study.  to t e s t the  I n c l u d e d i n t h i s s e c t i o n a r e the  r e s u l t s o f the q u i e t s u b t e s t d a t a as w e l l as the n o i s e s u b t e s t data. F i n a l l y , the r e s u l t s o f the p o s t hoc a n a l y s e s axe p r e s e n t e d . Assumption 1:  The r e s u l t s o f the c h i - s q u a r e t e s t used  to compare the  d i s t r i b u t i o n o f s c o r e s on t h e GFWT f o r the sample useditn t h i s  study  w i t h the sample used i n t h e development o f the t e s t norms a r e p r e s e n t e d i n T a b l e 1.  There was no s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e between the groups a t  e i t h e r age l e v e l on the q u i e t o r thennoise s u b t e s t s . be concluded  T h e r e f o r e , i t can  t h a t they r e p r e s e n t s i m i l a r p o p u l a t i o n s .  Assumption 2;  The r e s u l t s o f t h e t - t e s t s performed  r e a d i n g d a t a a r e p r e s e n t e d i n T a b l e 2.  on t h e d e c i b e l  The c o l l e c t i o n o f the n o i s e  l e v e l d a t a c o n s i s t e d o f o b s e r v i n g the r e a d i n g s on the d e c i b e l meter f o r approximately classroom.  D u r i n g each f i f t e e n second  noise l e v e l , recorded.  f i f t e e n seconds i n each o f t e n d i f f e r e n t areas o f each o b s e r v a t i o n , the upper extreme  the lower extreme n o i s e l e v e l and the mean n o i s e l e v e l were  The mean upper extreme r e p o r t e d i n the t a b l e r e f e r s  to the  mean o f a l l the r e c o r d e d upper extreme n o i s e l e v e l s i n the t e n areas i n two mornings o r a f t e r n o o n s o f o b s e r v a t i o n . was c a l c u l a t e d i n a s i m i l a r manner.  The mean lower  The meantinoise  extreme  l e v e l as w e l l as  Table 1 Comparisons between the GFWT Norming Sample amddtfre Sample used i n t h i s study (Chi-Square Goodness o f F i t )  Subtest.  df  Age 6-0 to 6-5  Age 6-6  to 6-11  Quiet  5  8.50  2.90*  Noise  12  7.12  18.35**  * C r i t i c a l v a l u e f o r c h i - s q u a r e (df=5) i s 11.070. * * C r i t i c a l v a l u e f o r c h i - s q u a r e (df=12) i s 21.026.  Table 2 Summary o f Sound L e v e l  Type  Readings  Mean dbA  tT V a l u e  Significance*  Open Area  62.50  2.:.2^  vgs  Self-contained  55.20  Mean PM Open Area  58.40 0.95  No  Self-contained  56.67  Lower L i m i t Mean AM Open A r e a  58. 83 2.28  Yes  1.55  No  2.30  Yes  Mean AM  Self-contained  51.60  Lower L i m i t Mean PM Open A r e a  54.80  Self-contained  51.50  Upper L i m i t Mean AM Open A r e a  66.00  Self-contained  58.80  Upper L i m i t Mean PM Open A r e a  62. 40  Self-contained  58.83  1.47-  * C r i t i c a l v a l u e f o r tCdf=9) f o r a one t a i l  t e s t i s 1.833.  No  31 the mean upper and mean lower extremes, of n o i s e , ware c o n s i s t e n t l y h i g h e r i n the open a r e a classrooms  than t h e s e l f c o n t a i n e d  classrooms.  However, i n terms o f s t a t i s t i c a l s i g n i f i c a n c e , o n l y the n o i s e l e v e l s i n the mornings^ were s i g n i f i c a n t l y g r e a t e r i n the open areas than the contained  self  classrooms.  D e s c r i p t i o n o f the Sample:  The means, s t a n d a r d d e v i a t i o n s , and i n t e r -  c o r r e l a t i o n s f o r the open a r e a group a r e p r e s e n t e d i n T a b l e 3 and f o r the s e l f c o n t a i n e d group i n Table 4.  T - t e s t comparisons were made  between the open a r e a and s e l f c o n t a i n e d groups f o r each o f the s u b t e s t s o f the WRAT and GFWT.  The o n l y s i g n i f i c a n t i n i t i a l d i f f e r e n c e between  the two groups was found  on the a r i t h m e t i c s u b t e s t o f the WRAT. The  s e l f c o n t a i n e d group s c o r e d s i g n i f i c a n t l y h i g h e r on t h i s s u b t e s t  than  the open a r e a group. The means, s t a n d a r d d e v i a t i o n s , and i n t e r c o r r e l a t i o n s between a l l o f the v a r i a b l e s used i n t h i s study are p r e s e n t e d i n Table 5. i n t e r e s t i n g t o note  It is  t h a t the c o r r e l a t i o n s between WRAT r e a d i n g and CPT  r e a d i n g , and WRAT a r i t h m e t i c and CPT mathematics are not v e r y h i g h . r a i s e s q u e s t i o n s r e g a r d i n g the c o n c u r r e n t o r d i f f e r e n t i a l content of these t e s t s .  This  validity  They don't appear t o measure the same f a c e t s o f t h e i r  r e s p e c t i v e domains. Hypothesis: procedure  Stepwise m u l t i p l e r e g r e s s i o n a n a l y s i s was the  used t o a n a l y z e the data f o r t h i s h y p o t h e s i s .  statistical  Two p a r a l l e l  s e t s o f a n a l y s e s were performed, one on the n o i s e s u b t e s t data and one on the q u i e t s u b t e s t d a t a . was  The purpose o f the q u i e t s u b t e s t  analyses  t o ensure t h a t an a u d i t o r y d i s c r i m i n a t i o n problem was not r e s p o n s i b l e  f o r the expected  underachievement o f the open a r e a Ss who had d i f f i c u l t y  with auditory figure-ground perception.  Table 3 Means, Standard D e v i a t i o n s , and I n t e r c o r r e l a t i o n s between the WRAT and GFWT Scores f o r the Open A r e a Group (N=43)**  — —  ———  Variable  s  1  —  2  3  4  1. WRAT Reading  24.95  13.34  2. WRAT. Spelling  20.79  6.75  77*  —  3. WRAT Arithmetic  16.84  2.94  75*  57*  4. GFWT Quiet  1.35  1.27  -49*  -31*  -51*  —  5. GFWT Noise  10.00  2.96  -12  -03  -31*  23  5  —  * Any c o r r e l a t i o n g r e a t e r than .30 i s s i g n i f i c a n t where o C =.05. ** C o r r e l a t i o n e n t r i e s a r e rounded t o two' f i g u r e s and decimals are o m i t t e d . T h i s sample does n o t i n c l u d e Ss who were e l i m i n a t e d from the study due to i l l n e s s o r changing s c h o o l s p r i o r to f i n a l CPT t e s t i n g .  Table 4 Means, Standard D e v i a t i o n s , and I n t e r c o r r e l a t i o n s between the WRAT and GFWT Scores f o r the S e l f - C o n t a i n e d Group (N=43)**  Variables  1. WRAT Reading  26. 35  5.34  2. WRAT Spelling  20.54  2.07  62*  3. WRAT Arithmetic  18.16  1.77  34*  44*  4. GFWT Quiet  1.54  1.20  -10  -15  -42*  5. GFWT Noise  10.44  2.80  02  -12  -10  33*  * Any c o r r e l a t i o n g r e a t e r than .30 i s s i g n i f i c a n t where o<=.05. ** C o r r e l a t i o n e n t r i e s are rounded to two f i g u r e s and decimals are o m i t t e d . T h i s sample does not i n c l u d e J s who were e l i m i n a t e d from the study due to i l l n e s s o r changing s c h o o l s p r i o r to f i n a l CPT t e s t i n g .  T.aMe 5 Means, Standard D e v i a t i o n s ,  Variable  X  and I n t e r c o r r e l a t i o n s between the V a r i a b l e s Used i n the Study (N=86) ** ;  s  1  1. C l a s s  0.50  .50  —  2. Sex  1.51  .50  -.05  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  3. WRAT «ea,. Reading  25.65  10.13  -07  14  4. WRATling Spelling  20.66  4.97  02  02  5. WRAT Arithmetic  17.50  2.50  -27*  6. QFWT Quiet  1.44  1.23  -08  7. GFWT Noise  10.22  2.87  -08  10  8. CPT Reading  19.41  10.53  -23*  08  55*  52*  52*  -18  -07  9. CPT Listening  30.04  6.42  -10  -0(D1  56*  37*  52*  -40*  -41* -48*  30.72  8.48  -23*  16  47*  35*  64*  -30*  -15  10.  CPT Math  * Any e n t r y  greater  23*  10  74* 66*  -26* -35* -07  than .21 i s s i g n i f i c a n t where  50* -25* -05  -43* -20  29*  54*  64*  o < =.05.  ** I n t e r c o r r e l a t i o n e n t r i e s a r e rounded t o two f i g u r e s and decimals are o m i t t e d .  -c-  35 A r a t i o n a l r a n k i n g procedure  was used f o r the o r d e r i n g o f the  independent v a r i a b l e s i n the stepwise of  analysis.  The f i r s t  category  v a r i a b l e s t o be e n t e r e d i n t o the e q u a t i o n was t h e c o v a r i a t e . The  combined r e a d i n g , s p e l l i n g and a r i t h m e t i c s c o r e s o f the WRAT were used as a c o v a r i a t e w h i c h e f f e c t e d the e q u i v a l e n t o f an a n a l y s i s o f c o v a r i a n c e . The of  second terms t o be e n t e r e d i n t o t h e e q u a t i o n were o r g a n i s m i c v a r i a b l e s little  sex.  interest.  The o n l y v a r i a b l e which f e l l  i n t o t h i s c a t e g o r y was  The t h i r d c a t e g o r y o f v a r i a b l e s t o be e n t e r e d was t h e s c o r e s on  the n o i s e s u b t e s t o f t h e GFWT.  The f o u r t h c a t e g o r y t o be e n t e r e d  into  the r e g r e s s i o n e q u a t i o n was the type o f c l a s s r o o m - open a r e a o f s e l f contained.  The f i f t h  term t o be e n t e r e d was the p o t e n t i a l  between s e x and n o i s e s u b t e s t s c o r e s .  interaction  The s i x t h term t o be e n t e r e d  was t h e p o t e n t i a l i n t e r a c t i o n between sex and type o f c l a s s . p o t e n t i a l i n t e r a c t i o n which corresponds seventh  term t o be e n t e r e d .  The  t o the h y p o t h e s i s was the  T h i s was t h e expected  type o f c l a s s and s c o r e s on t h e n o i s e s u b t e s t .  i n t e r a c t i o n between  The e i g h t h c a t e g o r y t o  be e n t e r e d was a p o t e n t i a l i n t e r a c t i o n between type o f c l a s s , s e x and s c o r e s on t h e n o i s e s u b t e s t . The  r e g r e s s i o n model f o r each o f t h e t h r e e dependent v a r i a b l e s was  as f.follows: Y = B X 0  0  +  + B X 2  2  +  BgXg + E ,  where Y i s t h e dependent v a r i a b l e , is  t h e combined e f f e c t o f the c o v a r i a t e s - WRAT Reading,  A r i t h m e t i c and S p e l l i n g , i s Sex, is  s c o r e s on the N o i s e  s u b t e s t o f the GFWT,  36  is  the Type o f c l a s s ,  X,. i s t h e combined e f f e c t o f Sex and N o i s e s c o r e s , Xg i s the combined e f f e c t o f Sex and Type o f c l a s s , is  the combined e f f e c t o f Type o f c l a s s and N o i s e s c o r e s ,  X„ i s the combined e f f e c t o f Type o f c l a s s , Sex and N o i s e o " ' s c o r e s , and E i s experimental  error.  T h i s c o n c e p t u a l model f o r e a c h r e g r e s s i o n a n a l y s i s was b u i l t on s i x v a r i a b l e s which were grouped i n t o e i g h t c a t e g o r i e s .  Four o f these  s i x v a r i a b l e s were c o n s i d e r e d to be i n t e r v a l s c a l e s , b u t sex and type of  c l a s s were c a t e g o r i c a l v a r i a b l e s which were r e p r e s e n t e d i n t h e  a n a l y s i s as dummy v a r i a b l e s . Separate  stepwise r e g r e s s i o n a n a l y s e s were performed  and q u i e t d a t a , f o r each o f the t h r e e dependent v a r i a b l e s . of  on the n o i s e The r e s u l t s  the q u i e t s u b t e s t a n a l y s e s are p r e s e n t e d i n T a b l e 6. The o n l y s i g n i f i c a n t s o u r c e o f v a r i a n c e (except f o r t h e c o v a r i a t e s )  in  the t h r e e a n a l y s e s o f t h e q u i e t s u b t e s t data was the main e f f e c t o f  the q u i e t s u b t e s t on the l i s t e n i n g measure.  T h i s corresponds  to a  s i g n i f i c a n t source o f v a r i a n c e found i n the a n a l y s i s o f the n o i s e s u b t e s t d a t a (see Table 3) w h i c h was t h e e f f e c t o f the n o i s e f a c t o r on the s c o r e s o f the l i s t e n i n g measure. difficulty  T h i s suggests  t h a t the more  c h i l d r e n have w i t h a u d i t o r y d i s c r i m i n a t i o n under q u i e t as  w e l l as n o i s e c o n d i t i o n s on t h e GFWT, t h e p o o r e r t h e i r l i s t e n i n g w i l l be on the CPT.  skills  There d i d not appear to be any r e l a t i o n s h i p between  poor a u d i t o r y d i s c r i m i n a t i o n as measured by the q u i e t s u b t e s t and r e a d i n g o r mathematics achievement on the CPT r e g a r d l e s s o f c l a s s r o o m  37  Table 6 R e s u l t s o f the R e g r e s s i o n A n a l y s e s  df  AR  Mathematics  Listening  Reading Source o f Variation  f o r the Q u i e t S u b t e s t Data  2  obs  AR  2  F . obs  F , obs  17.66*  .3551  15.58*  .4081  .04  .3746  2.55  .4085  .05  .3757  .53  .53  4.91*  .4092  .09  1  .3964  2.65  .4129  .15  .4162  .91  Sex • Q u i e t  1  .3978  .18  .4243  1.50  .4195  .43  Type • Sex  1  .3985  .09  .4271  .36  .4196  .01  Type  • Quiet  1  .4111  1.62  .4291  .26  .4209  .17  Type  • Sex • Quiet  1  .4135  .31  .4304  .18  . 4209  .00  Covariates  3  .3713  Sex  1  .3716  Quiet  1  Type  15.87*  Note - E r r o r terms f o r Reading = ,0078; L i s t e n i n g = .0076; and Mathematics = .0077. *p <  .05.  38  Table 7 R e s u l t s o f the R e g r e s s i o n A n a l y s e s f o r the N o i s e Subtest  Data  1 Reading Source o f Variation  df  . „2 A R  Covariates  3  .3713  Sex  1  .3716  Noise  1  .3717  Type  1  .3956  3.53  .4758  1  .4092  1.99  Type • Sex  1  .4096  Type • N o i s e  1  . 4163  Type • Sex • Noise  1  .4914  Sex  • Noise  Mathematics  Listening  obs  18.21*  obs  AR  .05.  F , obs  .3551  17.41*  .4081  .04  .3746  2.85  .4085  .05  .02 .  .4740  14.62*  .4094  .12  .28  . 4162  .10  .4852  1.37  .4205  .59  .06  .4853  .02  .4206  .01  .99  .4865  .18  .4210  .04  .4865  .02  .4379  2.27  11.04*  Note - E r r o r terms f o r Reading = .0068; L i s t e n i n g = .0068; and Mathematics = .0075. *p <  2  18.13*  39 type. T h i s study was the more d i f f i c u l t y  s p e c i f i c a l l y designed first  to t e s t the h y p o t h e s i s  that  grade c h i l d r e n i n open area classrooms  had  w i t h a u d i t o r y f i g u r e - g r o u n d p e r c e p t i o n as measured by the n o i s e s u b t e s t of  the GFWT, the lower  t h e i r s c o r e s would be on the CPT  A s i m i l a r r e l a t i o n s h i p was classrooms.  The  expected  on the n o i s e s u b t e s t was h y p o t h e s i s had noted and P o s t Hoc  not expected  not  found  Analyses:  t o be s i g n i f i c a n t and  A t r e n d i n the expected  e x p l o r e d f u r t h e r i n p o s t hoc  necessary  scores  t h e r e f o r e , the direction  a n a l y s e s o f the  was  data.  In o r d e r to v i s u a l i z e the r e l a t i o n s h i p s between  i n t e r a c t i o n s c o n t a i n i n g the n o i s e v a r i a b l e and i t was  test.  i n self-contained  i n t e r a c t i o n between type of c l a s s and  to be r e j e c t e d .  t h i s was  to be found  achievement  to group the raw  the h i s t o g r a m p r e s e n t e d e s t a b l i s h e d : group 1,  the dependent v a r i a b l e s ,  s c o r e s on the n o i s e s u b t e s t .  Using  i n F i g u r e 2, the f o l l o w i n g f o u r groups were  c o n s i s t i n g o f S_s w i t h s c o r e s r a n g i n g from 0  group 2, c o n s i s t i n g of Ss w i t h s c o r e s r a n g i n g from 7 to 9; c o n s i s t i n g of S_s w i t h s c o r e s r a n g i n g from 10 to 12; c o n s i s t i n g of S_s w i t h s c o r e s g r e a t e r than  group  and group  to66; 3,  4,  12.  U s i n g these f o u r groups to r e p r e s e n t the l e v e l s o f performance on the n o i s e s u b t e s t , the type by n o i s e i n t e r a c t i o n and  the mean  raw  s c o r e s f o r each group o f the three*dependent v a r i a b l e s are p r e s e n t e d i n T a b l e <S. i t was  Even though these i n t e r a c t i o n s were not  noted  found  to be  t h a t the s e l f c o n t a i n e d Ss i n group 4 tended  significant,  to s c o r e  h i g h e r on a l l t h r e e dependent v a r i a b l e s than the open a r e a S_s i n group 4.  S i n c e the f o u r t h l e v e l group r e p r e s e n t e d Ss who  are s u s p e c t e d  of  f u n c t i o n i n g i n the c r i t i c a l range of a u d i t o r y f i g u r e - g r o u n d p e r c e p t i o n  15 14 13 12 11 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 Raw Score  5  . 6  10  , 11  . 12  . 13  • 14  • 15  • 16  • 17  Group  Figure 2 H i s t o g r a m of the Observed F r e q u e n c i e s of the Noise Subtest Raw  Scores  18  41  Table 8 Mean CPT Scores- f o r t h e Type by N o i s e I n t e r a c t i o n  Open A r e a  14.84  15.80  23.19  9.43  Self-contained  23.75  23.92  21.12  21.73  Open Area  34.75  27.40  32.13  21.63  Self-contained  32.00  33.13  33.43  31.27  Open Area  35.00  30.27  30.50  22.63  Self-contained  38.00  31.20  30.50  28.27  Reading  Mathematics  Listening  42 a c c o r d i n g t o the GFWT norms f o r s i x y e a r o l d c h i l d r e n , t h e f i r s t  three  groups f o r each type o f c l a s s r o o m were combined and compared w i t h the f o u r t h l e v e l groups by means o f a n a l y s i s o f c o v a r i a n c e . p r e s e n t s t h e type by n o i s e a d j u s t e d means f o r the r e a d i n g ,  Table 9 listening,  and mathematics measures.  None o f these r e l a t i o n s h i p s were s t a t i s t i c a l l y  s i g n i f i c a n t which suggests  t h a t the academic achievement o f c h i l d r e n i n  group 4 who had extremely  h i g h s c o r e s on the n o i s e s u b t e s t was n o t  a d v e r s e l y a f f e c t e d by d i f f e r e n c e s i n t h e i r l e a r n i n g environments. An unexpected s t a t i s t i c a l l y s i g n i f i c a n t r e l a t i o n s h i p between o f classroom, variables.  sex and n o i s e s u b t e s t s c o r e s was found  This i n t e r a c t i o n  (see F i g u r e 3) suggests  type  f o r the r e a d i n g t h a t the more  d i f f i c u l t y boys have w i t h a u d i t o r y d i s c r i m i n a t i o n under n o i s e c o n d i t i o n s , t h e p o o r e r t h e i r r e a d i n g achievement w i l l be i n open a r e a classes but not i n s e l f contained c l a s s e s . found  among g i r l s ,  s u b t e s t , the p o o r e r  A d i f f e r e n t r e l a t i o n s h i p was  i n t h a t the more d i f f i c u l t y  they had on the n o i s e  t h e i r r e a d i n g achievement was i n s e l f - c o n t a i n e d  c l a s s e s , b u t t h i s was not t r u e i n open a r e a c l a s s e s . A n a l y s i s o f c o v a r i a n c e was used t o determine whether t h e r e was a s t a t i s t i c a l l y s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e between t h e Ss i n t h e c r i t i c a l and n o n - c r i t i c a l groups i n t h i s i n t e r a c t i o n .  Graphical representation  o f the r e s u l t s o f t h i s a n a l y s i s i s p r e s e n t e d i n F i g u r e 4.  The  r e s u l t i n g F r a t i o o f 5.9142 was s i g n i f i c a n t a t the .05 l e v e l .  This  may be i n t e r p r e t e d as meaning t h a t boys w i t h a u d i t o r y f i g u r e - g r o u n d p e r c e p t i o n problems have more success l e a r n i n g t o read i n s e l f classrooms  .  contained  than open areas b u t g i r l s w i t h a s i m i l a r problem appear to  have more r e a d i n g success  i n open areas than s e l f c o n t a i n e d  classrooms.  Table 9 Mean CPT A d j u s t e d Scores f o r the Combined Groups Of The Type By N o i s e I n t e r a c t i o n  Reading Reading  1-3  4  Open A r e a  18.16  16.02  Self-contained  21.56  19.51  Open A r e a  30.36  29.03  Self-contained  31.56  30.68  Open A r e a  30.78  26.90  Self-contained  30.84  27.62  Mathematics  Listening  44  ff  r# Open A r e a : Male  •  # Open A r e a : Female  A.  A S e l f - c o n t a i n e d : Male  A  • • ASelf-contained:  30 28 26 24 CD  2  22  oc C  20  o o  •H  Td  S"  rt  18  IX  16 14 12 10 8  2  3  N o i s e Group  Figure 3 Type by Sex by N o i s e I n t e r a c t i o n on the Reading Regression Analysis  Female  45  '  • Open A r e a : Male  . ...  Open A r e a : Female _W S e l f - c o n t a i n e d : Male  -  • -A S e l f - c o n t a i n e d :  30 28 cfl  26  •rl  24  rt  22  03 60  •H  20  rt  18  13 cfl CU  2-  ^  16 14  Group  Figure 4 Type by Sex b y N o i s e I n t e r a c t i o n f o r t h e C r i t i c a l and N o n - C r i t i c a l Groups on the Reading ANOVA  Female  46  CHAPTER 4 DISCUSSION AND CONCLUSIONS  Discussion The purpose o f t h i s study was t o i n v e s t i g a t e the r e l a t i o n s h i p between a u d i t o r y f i g u r e - g r o u n d p e r c e p t i o n as measured by the GFWT and academic achievement as measured by the CPT, i n open a r e a and s e l f c o n t a i n e d classrooms. was  expected  rooms.  The n o i s e l e v e l i n open a r e a grade one classrooms  t o be h i g h e r than the n o i s e l e v e l i n s e l f c o n t a i n e d  T h i s l e d to the h y p o t h e s i s  t h a t the more d i f f i c u l t y  i n open a r e a c l a s s e s had p e r c e i v i n g sounds i n d i f f i c u l t  to be found  found  their  A s i m i l a r r e l a t i o n s h i p was n o t expected  amongst c h i l d r e n i n s e l f  Although  children  listening  s i t u a t i o n s as measured by the GFWT n o i s e s u b t e s t , t h e lower achievement s c o r e s would be.  class-  contained c l a s s e s .  the open a r e a classrooms  used i n t h i s study were g e n e r a l l y  to be n o i s i e r than t h e s e l f c o n t a i n e d classrooms,  the expected  r e l a t i o n s h i p between the GFWT n o i s e s u b t e s t and performance on the CPT was  n o t found  to s t a t i s t i c a l l y  significant.  However, examination o f  the raw data i n d i c a t e d a t r e n d i n t h e expected  direction.  The Ss were  grouped a c c o r d i n g t o t h e i r n o i s e s u b t e s t s c o r e s , and the S_s i n the c r i t i c a l group were compared u s i n g the CPT grade norms.  I t was found  t h a t t h e average open a r e a S_ i n t h e c r i t i c a l group was f u n c t i o n i n g a t the b e g i n n i n g  grade 1.0 r e a d i n g l e v e l i n A p r i l whereas t h e average  s e l f c o n t a i n e d S_ i n the c r i t i c a l level.  group was r e a d i n g a t the grade 1.8  There was a l s o a tendency f o r the s e l f  contained c r i t i c a l  group  47  to p e r f o r m  s l i g h t l y b e t t e r than  mathematics and v a r i a n c e due  the open a r e a c r i t i c a l  l i s t e n i n g subtests.  group on  the  U n f o r t u n a t e l y , the c o v a r i a t e s and  to o t h e r unknown f a c t o r s masked p o s s i b l e s t a t i s t i c a l l y  s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s between these groups when they were compared by a n a l y s i s of c o v a r i a n c e .  The  d i f f e r e n c e between the two  the mathematics s u b t e s t of the CPT  c o u l d be a t t r i b u t e d to  groups on the  s i g n i f i c a n t l y b e t t e r performance o f the s e l f c o n t a i n e d group on i n i t i a l WRATaarithmetic t e s t i n g i n the f a l l . d i f f e r e n c e between the two t e s t i n g b u t t h e r e was  may  be one  no  significant  groups i n r e a d i n g on the i n i t i a l WRAT  a tendency f o r the m a j o r i t y o f the open a r e a  s u b j e c t s to f u n c t i o n a t a lower c o n t a i n e d group.  There was  the  r e a d i n g l e v e l on the CPT.than the  self  T h i s d i f f e r e n c e approached s i g n i f i c a n c e ato<=.05  o f the reasons why  the d i f f e r e n c e between the c r i t i c a l  d i d not t u r n out to be s t a t i s t i c a l l y  groups  significant.  In the m u l t i p l e r e g r e s s i o n a n a l y s e s based on the n o i s e s u b t e s t t h e r e were o n l y two Regarding  sex, and n o i s e s u b t e s t s c o r e s was  who  data,  s t a t i s t i c a l l y s i g n i f i c a n t sources o f v a r i a n c e .  the r e a d i n g a n a l y s i s , the i n t e r a c t i o n between type o f  and extremely  and  difficult  highly significant,  to e x p l a i n .  class,  t o t a l l y unexpected,  T h i s i n t e r a c t i o n suggests  t h a t boys  have d i f f i c u l t y w i t h a u d i t o r y f i g u r e - g r o u n d p e r c e p t i o n l e a r n to  read more e f f i c i e n t l y i n s e l f c o n t a i n e d c l a s s e s r a t h e r than open a r e a s , whereas g i r l s w i t h a s i m i l a r problem l e a r n to read more e f f i c i e n t l y i n open areas r a t h e r than s e l f  contained c l a s s e s .  This  relationship  appears to be i n e x p l i c a b l e w i t h i n the framework o f the p r e s e n t and may The  be due  to sampling  e r r o r or some o t h e r p r o c e d u r a l  second s i g n i f i c a n t source of v a r i a n c e on  research  artifact.  the n o i s e a n a l y s i s  48 was  t h e e f f e c t o f n o i s e s c o r e s on t h e l i s t e n i n g s u b t e s t .  A similar  e f f e c t was found on t h e q u i e t a n a l y s i s i n which the q u i e t s u b t e s t of  scores  the GFWT were a s t a t i s t i c a l l y  s i g n i f i c a n t source o f v a r i a n c e on t h e  s c o r e s o f the l i s t e n i n g s u b t e s t .  These f i n d i n g s i n d i c a t e t h a t the more  difficulty  c h i l d r e n have p e r c e i v i n g sounds on t h e q u i e t and n o i s e  s u b t e s t s o f the GFWT, the poorer s u b t e s t o f t h e CPT.  t h e i r s c o r e s w i l l be on the l i s t e n i n g  T h i s i n f o r m a t i o n suggests  t h a t the GFWT c o u l d be  used to i d e n t i f y c h i l d r e n i n need o f r e m e d i a t i o n  t o improve  their  l i s t e n i n g s k i l l s , i f t h e development o f l i s t e n i n g s k i l l s i s one o f t h e o b j e c t i v e s o f a s p e c i f i c i n s t r u c t i o n a l programme. The r e s u l t s o f t h i s study do n o t i n d i c a t e a s i g n i f i c a n t  relation-  s h i p between the GFWT s c o r e s and the r e a d i n g and mathematics s c o r e s o f the CPT amongst  e i t h e r the open a r e a o r s e l f c o n t a i n e d  C o n f l i c t i n g r e s u l t s were found  subjects.  i n Marsh's study i n w h i c h a s i g n i f i c a n t  r e l a t i o n s h i p was found between h e r measure o f a u d i t o r y  figure-ground  p e r c e p t i o n and t h e r e a d i n g , s p e l l i n g and a r i t h m e t i c s c o r e s o f the Wide Range Achievement T e s t . This raises questions  as to whether b o t h  tests  aremmeasuring  the same a u d i t o r y p e r c e p t i o n t r a i t and whether the s k i l l s measured by the GFWT a r e e s s e n t i a l f o r l e a r n i n g r e a d i n g and a r i t h m e t i c s k i l l s .  It  i s p o s s i b l e t h a t many o f t h e c h i l d r e n i n t h i s study who had d i f f i c u l t y on the GFWT were a b l e t o compensate  f o r their auditory perceptual  d e f i c i e n c i e s by s t r e n g t h s i n o t h e r p e r c e p t u a l Marascuilo  areas.  and P e n f i e l d (1972) i m p l i e d t h a t c h i l d r e n have t o  l e a r n how to f i l t e r out background n o i s e i n o r d e r to s u c c e s s f u l l y l e a r n new m a t e r i a l i n t h e c l a s s r o o m  situation.  Although  the r e s u l t s  of  t h e i r study suggest  grade two  that t h i s type o f s k i l l can be  l e v e l , t h e y o f f e r no evidence  trained at  the  to l i n k the u s e f u l n e s s o f  this  s k i l l w i t h the l e a r n i n g of b a s i c academic s k i l l s such as r e a d i n g , arithmetic.  There i s an obvious  need f o r f u r t h e r r e s e a r c h to  what e f f e c t a u d i t o r y f i g u r e - g r o u n d p e r c e p t i o n has l e a r n i n g and  and  clarify  on c h i l d r e n ' s  behaviour.  Conclusion The for  r e s u l t s of t h i s study have not p r o v i d e d s t a t i s t i c a l  the s u g g e s t i o n  that c h i l d r e n with auditory figure-ground  support perception  problems are more s u i t a b l y p l a c e d i n s e l f c o n t a i n e d classrooms than open a r e a classrooms.  rather  However, many i n t e r e s t i n g q u e s t i o n s  have  been r a i s e d r e g a r d i n g the e d u c a t i o n a l i m p l i c a t i o n s of t h i s a b i l i t y focus on r e l e v a n t a s p e c t s of the a u d i t o r y f i e l d and i r r e l e v a n t background s t i m u l i .  The  having  are suspected  of  education.  Recommendations and I m p l i c a t i o n s f o r F u t u r e  Research  I t c o u l d be argued t h a t c a u s a t i v e f a c t o r s i n the f a i l u r e o f  r e s u l t s o f t h i s study t o support for  await  an a u d i t o r y f i g u r e - g r o u n d p e r c e p t i o n problem r e c e i v e the b e s t  possible  1.  "tune o u t "  answers to these q u e s t i o n s  f u t u r e r e s e a r c h i n o r d e r to ensure t h a t c h i l d r e n who  to  the  the h y p o t h e s i s were l a c k of c o n t r o l  v a r i a b l e s such as the v a r i e t y of rooms used f o r t e s t a d m i n i s t r a t i o n ,  l a c k of sound p r o o f i n g i n the t e s t rooms, and ment t e s t i n g s i t u a t i o n . r e s e a r c h e r who  has  use of a group  I f the study were to be r e p e a t e d by  achievea  access to a sound p r o o f , m o b i l e l a b o r a t o r y and  50 u n l i m i t e d time i n which t o i n d i v i d u a l l y a s s e s s each c h i l d , i t i s p o s s i b l e but not probable  t h a t the h y p o t h e s i s would be supported.  A  more r e a l i s t i c recommendation f o r f u t u r e r e s e a r c h would be t o experiment w i t h d i f f e r e n t measures o f a u d i t o r y f i g u r e - g r o u n d  perception  and/or achievement. 2.  Examination o f the r e s u l t s o f the p r e s e n t  and p a s t s t u d i e s i n d i c a t e s  a need f o r an i n v e s t i g a t i o n o f t h e c o n s t r u c t v a l i d i t y o f a u d i t o r y figure-ground perception.  F o r example, an attempt c o u l d be made t o  determine whether the n o i s e s u b t e s t o f the GFWT i s measuring the same trait  t h a t i s b e i n g measured by e x p e r i m e n t a l  measures o f a u d i t o r y  f i g u r e - g r o u n d p e r c e p t i o n used i n o t h e r s t u d i e s . 3.  B e f o r e a g r e a t d e a l o f time and e f f o r t a r e spent  attempting to  remediate a u d i t o r y f i g u r e - g r o u n d p e r c e p t i o n problems, s t u d i e s a r e needed t o f u r t h e r i n v e s i g a t e the e f f e c t s o f e x i s t i n g procedures  on the a c q u i s i t i o n o f s k i l l s  training  such as r e a d i n g and a r i t h m e t i c .  P o s s i b l y Marsh's t e s t o f a u d i t o r y f i g u r e - g r o u n d p e r c e p t i o n c o u l d be used to i d e n t i f y grade two c h i l d r e n w i t h d i f f i c u l t i e s noisy conditions.  One group o f these  i n l i s t e n i n g under  c h i l d r e n c o u l d be g i v e n  r e m e d i a t i o n w i t h MariascuiHro and P e n f i e l d ' s t r a i n i n g programme and another  group c o u l d be g i v e n r e m e d i a t i o n  i n some u n r e l a t e d a r e a .  At  the end o f the t r a i n i n g p e r i o d , the two groups c o u l d be compared on the WRAT t o determine whether they was any d i f f e r e n c e i n t h e i r s p e l l i n g , and a r i t h m e t i c s c o r e s .  I f M a r a s c u i l o and P e n f i e l d ' s t r a i n i n g  programme i s r e l a t e d to academic s u c c e s s , then  the group r e c e i v i n g t h e  t r a i n i n g s h o u l d s c o r e h i g h e r on the WRAT than the p l a c e b o 4.  reading,  group.  One o t h e r p p o s s i b i l i t y f o r f u t u r e r e s e a r c h would be t o repeat the  p r e s e n t study u s i n g Marsh's t e s t as a measure o f a u d i t o r y f i g u r e ground p e r c e p t i o n i n s t e a d of the GFWT.  P o s s i b l y Marsh's t e s t would  prove to be the p r e d i c t i v e instrument which the p r e s e n t  study  u n s u c c e s s f u l l y sought t o h e l p i d e n t i f y c h i l d r e n who may  be  i n a p p r o p r i a t e l y p l a c e d i n open a r e a  classrooms.  52  BIBLIOGRAPHY  A l l e n , D.I. Open areas In B r i t i s h Columbia. F r a s e r " U n i v e r s i t y , 1972.  Vancouver, B.C.: Simon  B e l l , A.E., and S w i t z e r , F. F a c t o r s r e l a t e d to p r e - s c h o o l p r e d i c t i o n of academic achievement: B e g i n n i n g r e a d i n g i n open-area v s . t r a d i t i o n a l c l a s s r o o m systems. Manitoba J o u r n a l of E d u c a t i o n , 1973, _8, ( 2 ) , 21-27. 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