Final Thesis

Exploring the applicability of virtual reality to investigate auditory selective attention in children

Key Info

Basic Information

Research Area:
Audio-visual Interaction
Type of Thesis:


The ability to focus our attention on a specific sound source in complex everyday situations is a very fascinating skill, which is widely described as auditory selective attention (ASA). A new approach allows to investigate ASA in a realistic virtual reality (VR) environment. In using VR, we can improve the engagement in the task and keep adults motivated during the experiments. However, we know that children behave differently than adults. Research has shown, that the auditory attention develops with age and reaches an adult-like level roughly around the age of 12 years. Furthermore, children are more susceptible to noise than adults. This makes it necessary to investigate children instead of only considering results obtained from adults. Unfortunately, many manufacturers of VR hardware have age restrictions above 13 years due to children’s head dimensions and their high immersion in the virtual environments. This thesis investigates, how VR can be used for research on ASA with children and will conduct a first pilot study with children.

- interest to design and conduct a listening experiment
- interest to work with children/teenagers
- basic programming skills, - German language skills

Optional Skills:
- Knowledge of MATLAB
- Unity
- C#