Author: Lise’ D. DeLong, Ph.D
As a NeuroCognitive Specialist, I have come to realize many of the common characteristics we attribute to ADHD, ADD, and nonspecific learning disabilities are frequently exacerbated by Auditory Processing concerns. Although most of these disorders interface with one another and share many common elements it is important to determine whether the attention difficulties are particularly associated with cognitive, auditory or visual processing deficits.
Therefore, I have found that by using of a variety of Auditory tests I can discern the attention problems more specifically. Current tests, such as Scan-C for children or Scan-A for adolescents and adults, or The Woodcock Test of Auditory Discrimination, are relatively inexpensive and can help pinpoint whether problems with processing the information exist.
The Woodcock Test for Auditory Discrimination looks at whether the individual can discriminate phonemes in the initial, medial or final position, in a quiet or noisy environment.
The Scan-C or Scan-A determines the processing of information using dichotic listening techniques; isolated words in specific ears, figure-ground, competing words in both ears or competing sentences simultaneously.
Another excellent test for a pre & post measurement for neurofeedback is an out of print test called ITPA (Illinois Test of Psycholinguistic Abilities). This test is comprised of several subtests, but there are four which I find extremely useful; Auditory Reception, Auditory Association, Auditory Sequential Memory and Auditory Closure. Each of these subtests measures a separate component of listening and attention skills.
Neurofeedback is an useful tool when working with Auditory Disorders. Through my graduate research, I found that after twenty sessions of neurofeedback—coupled with the neurocognitive activities described below—the experimental group had significant gains in Auditory Discrimination in comparison with the control group (DeLong, 2002).
Management of CAPD
The management of CAPD can be addressed using several different methods. In her book, Assessment and Management of Central Auditory Processing Disorders (1998), Teri James Bellis describes the use of the following as a program for effective treatment.
Temporal Patterning Training
Examples of Auditory Processing Activities
TriBond, Blurt, Think-
Thinking Goes to School
Mad Gab, Moods,
Who, Parrot Software
Saying One Thing and
Auditory Sequential Memory
Soundsmart, Soft Tools,
Listen & Recall
Auditory Sequential Memory– the number of digits retained in working memory.
Auditory Discrimination– The ability to differentiate between frequency, rhythms, inflections and intensity levels.
Auditory Association – The ability to connect auditory information with past knowledge in a logical manner.
Auditory Reception – The ability to perceive the gestalt of the information being said while in rapid conversation