On guest visit in York with eye-tracking facilities

Wednesday 24 Sep 14


Dorothea Wendt
Guest Senior Researcher
DTU Health Tech
As part of the European Marie Curie Initial Training Network ‘INSPIRE’, Dorothea Wendt from the Hearing Systems Group spent a week in September as a guest researcher at the University of York (UK). The purpose of her visit was to set up eye-tracking facilities and start testing an eye-tracking experiment.

The experiment is the continuation of a study that was undertaken at the DTU with Danish participants, aiming to investigate the effect of a competing talker on sentence comprehension. This study is part of a PhD project carried out by Huarda Valdés-Laribi, an Early Stage Researcher based at the University of York, and whose second host institution within the INSPIRE network is the Technical University of Denmark. The eye-tracking experiment that Dorothea Wendt has been overseeing, alongside Professor Sven Mattys, The University of York; and Professor Ewen MacDonald, Hearing Systems, DTU, aims to test the hypothesis that informational interference, due to a competing talker, depletes processing resources that would otherwise be allocated to recognizing and understanding the target speech.
Using a speeded picture selection task, we are testing native and non-native participants’ understanding of English sentences varying in syntactic complexity, played against a competing talker versus an energetic mask (speech-modulated noise, and reversed speech). Eye fixations and pupil size are measured and analyzed as indicators of processing difficulties, thus providing insight into the psycholinguistic mechanisms underlying sentence comprehension in the presence of a competing talker. Huarda Valdés-Laribi tested non-native participants in Denmark during her month-long stay in April, and will now be testing native participants in order to gain a better understanding of the difficulties that could be faced by non-native listeners of English.

Read more about Dorothea Wendt's postdoc project here

Read more about Huarda Valdés-Laribi's guest stay at Hearing Systems here

Professor Sven Mattys will visit Hearing Systems on October 10 at Copenhagen Hearing Colloquium

The Marie Curie Initial Training Network INSPIRE

Starting Jan 2012, the Marie Curie Initial Training Network Investigating Speech Processing In Realistic Environments (INSPIRE) provides research opportunities for 13 PhD students (Early Stage Researchers) and 3 postdocs (Experienced Researchers) to study speech communication in real-world conditions.
The network consists of 10 European research institutes and 7 associated partners (5 companies and 2 academic hospitals).

The senior researchers in the network are academics in computer science, engineering, psychology, linguistics, hearing science, as well as Research and Development scientists from leading businesses in acoustics and hearing instruments, and ear, nose and throat specialists.

Read more here:

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