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Hearing Care Platform Launch

The CIRMMT and the Schulich School of Music launch joint project that assesses exposure to noise experienced by McGill music students.

On the occasion of World Hearing Day (March 3rd, 2020), the Schulich School of Music of McGill University and the Centre for Interdisciplinary Research in Music Media and Technology (CIRMMT) are pleased to announce the launch of their Hearing Care Platform (HCP). Conceived in partnership with the NSERC-EERS Industrial Research Chair in In-Ear Technologies (CRITIAS) at the École de technologie supérieure (ÉTS), this project is designed to assess the noise exposure experienced by McGill music students.

As part of the School’s continued efforts to provide healthy work environments, this project aims to raise awareness of and promote hearing care. With a calibrated custom mobile app and a “listening device” measuring kiosk, participants will be able to assess their weekly sound exposure from music and non-music activities, as well as the potential risks for their hearing health.

While a pilot program with music students will begin in October 2020, the HCP’s measuring kiosk is now accessible to all students. Using their own listening devices and playlists, participants are asked to place their headphones on the artificial ears of a mannequin’s head. After a series of questions, listening levels are assessed on a tablet and personalized information on hearing care is provided to the participant.

The kiosk is located on the fourth floor of the Elizabeth Wirth Music Building in the Marvin Duchow Music Library. (The library entrance is on the third floor.) Operating hours follow the library schedule. 

“Hearing protection awareness is crucial for our musicians. We are pleased to collaborate with CIRMMT who has provided the scientific and technological expertise to undertake the study and develop the measurement tools that will impact our students' lives,” said Brenda Ravenscroft, Dean of the Schulich School of Music. 

The project's originality lies in the assessment method, which calls upon users' active involvement by using their own devices. Anonymous datasets, generated by the future pilot study, will be also made available for research purposes. More information about this project and the upcoming results will be available soon at cirmmt.org/hearingplatform.