Predicting speech-in-noise recognition from performance on the trail making test

results from a large-scale internet study

Rachel J. Ellis*, Peter Molander, Jerker Rönnberg, Björn Lyxell, Gerhard Andersson, Thomas Lunner

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

10 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: The aim of the study was to investigate the utility of an internet- based version of the trail making test (TMT) to predict performance on a speech-in-noise perception task.

Design: Data were taken from a sample of 1509 listeners between ages 18 and 91 years old. Participants completed computerized versions of the TMT and an adaptive speech-in-noise recognition test. All testing was conducted via the internet.

Results: The results indicate that better performance on both the simple and complex subtests of the TMT are associated with better speechin- noise recognition scores. Thirty-eight percent of the participants had scores on the speech-in-noise test that indicated the presence of a hearing loss.

Conclusions: The findings suggest that the TMT may be a useful tool in the assessment, and possibly the treatment, of speech-recognition difficulties. The results indicate that the relation between speech-in-noise recognition and TMT performance relates both to the capacity of the TMT to index processing speed and to the more complex cognitive abilities also implicated in TMT performance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)73-79
Number of pages7
JournalEar and Hearing
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • cognition
  • internet screening
  • speech-in-noise perception
  • trail making test

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