Deafness occurring at adulthood leads to major communication problems. Some deaf people will be able to lip read, while others will not be able to do so and will be at risk of social isolation. Effective audio-visual (AV) integration is a predictor of successful cochlear implantation (CI). However, very little is known about the neurophysiological factors underlying these differences. Our hypothesis is that AV fusion is fixed from childhood and poorly improves despite deafness occurrence.
Our project will test AV interactions of adult subjects with and without deafness (lip reading and McGurk effect), engaged in a short lip reading program. It will include behavioural and neuroimaging recordings.
Understanding the plastic potential of AV interactions is a major aim to help the hearing impaired population and understand the variability observed during rehabilitation (acoustic prostheses and CI). Our results will allow to identify subjects at risk of poor performance and to offer new cognitive and fitting strategies.
The student will learn to create stimuli, test normal-hearing and hearing-impaired subjects, address central processing and formulate hypotheses for rehabilitative care, within a young and dynamic team at the Institut de l'Audition, Centre Pasteur.