From dichotic listening to the irrelevant sound effect: a behavioural and neuroimaging analysis of the processing of unattended speech
Beaman, C.P., Bridges, A. M. and Scott, S. K. (2007) From dichotic listening to the irrelevant sound effect: a behavioural and neuroimaging analysis of the processing of unattended speech. Cortex, 43 (1). pp. 124-134. ISSN 0010-9452
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To link to this article DOI: 10.1016/S0010-9452(08)70450-7
The assumption that ignoring irrelevant sound in a serial recall situation is identical to ignoring a non-target channel in dichotic listening is challenged. Dichotic listening is open to moderating effects of working memory capacity (Conway et al., 2001) whereas irrelevant sound effects (ISE) are not (Beaman, 2004). A right ear processing bias is apparent in dichotic listening, whereas the bias is to the left ear in the ISE (Hadlington et al., 2004). Positron emission tomography (PET) imaging data (Scott et al., 2004, submitted) show bilateral activation of the superior temporal gyrus (STG) in the presence of intelligible, but ignored, background speech and right hemisphere activation of the STG in the presence of unintelligible background speech. It is suggested that the right STG may be involved in the ISE and a particularly strong left ear effect might occur because of the contralateral connections in audition. It is further suggested that left STG activity is associated with dichotic listening effects and may be influenced by working memory span capacity. The relationship of this functional and neuroanatomical model to known neural correlates of working memory is considered.