Psychophysics involves the development of quantitative relationships between physical stimuli and their perception. In our psychophysical research, we investigate how acoustic features in sound are extracted and processed by the human listener to perform complex tasks such as speech recognition, source segregation, and sound localization. In real listening environments, sound from a source of interest and the information it contains are often interfered with by competing sounds, which may also contain distracting information. We use systematic experiments to measure human performance in similarly complex but controlled acoustic environments. Experiments are designed and organized according to listeners with and without hearing loss or cochlear implants. Current psychophysical studies in the HRC address directional and distance perception, effects of reverberation on auditory perception, the influence of spatial cues on acoustic source segregation, and short-term plasticity and perceptual learning in spatial hearing. Quantifying the relationship between the acoustic stimulus and human performance also often involves the development of mathematical models to describe the effects of interferers and the signal processing performed by the auditory system in extracting the features of interest.

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