The Digit Triplet Test and Lesser Explored Languages

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Background: The digit triplets test is a speech in noise test that aims to evaluate individuals’ ability to understand speech in the presence of background noise. Determining the capability of recognizing speech in noise is important because one of the most frequent complaints of people with hearing loss is difficulty understanding speech in a noisy environment. Digit triplet test has been developed widely in different languages including Dutch, French, Finnish, and English. However, limited research has been conducted with the goal of developing an Arabic version of the digit triplets test. Aim: The aim of the current study is to investigate whether the Arabic or English digits triplet test should be used with native Arabic speakers. In order to do accomplish this, an Arabic version of the digit triplet test must first be developed. Method: Nineteen adults with normal hearing thresholds will be recruited for this study. The participants must speak Arabic as their first language and English as a second language. Pure tone audiometry will first be administered in one ear to determine the hearing sensitivity of the subjects. Participants will then be asked to complete two versions of digits in noise test (Arabic and English) in one ear using a computer. Impact of findings: The results of the study will help to determine whether an Arabic version of the digit triplet test should be used with Arabic-speaking people. This research has particular relevance because many native speakers of Arabic are living in English-speaking countries. Positive results will mean that the use of an Arabic digit triplet test is recommended for Arabic-speaking people in order to increase the accuracy of the obtained results. In turn, this will help guide the most appropriate intervention for the target population.