BACKGROUND: Ecological momentary assessment (EMA) methods allow for real-time, real-world survey data collection. Studies with adults have reported EMA as a feasible and valid tool in the measurement of real-world listening experience. Research is needed to investigate the use of EMA with children who wear hearing aids.
OBJECTIVES: This study explored the implementation of EMA with children using a single-blinded repeated measures design to evaluate real-world aided outcome.
METHODS: Twenty-nine children, aged 7-17, used manual program switching to access hearing aid programs, fitted according to Desired Sensation Level (DSL) version 5.0 child quiet and noise prescriptive targets. Aided outcome was measured using participant-triggered twice-daily EMA entries, across listening situations and hearing dimensions.
RESULTS: Adherence to the EMA protocol by the children was high (82.4% compliance rate). Speech loudness, understanding and preference results were found to relate to both the hearing aid program and the listening situation. Aided outcomes related to prescription-based noise management were found to be highest in noisy situations.
CONCLUSIONS: Mobile device-based EMA methods can be used to inform daily life listening experience with children. Prescription-based noise management was found to decrease perceived loudness in noisy, non-school environments; this should be evaluated in combination with hearing aid noise reductions features.