Staff and students encouraged to take part in University-led sound tolerance survey

Researchers from the School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences have launched two surveys to investigate sound tolerance prevalence in students at university, with hopes that the results will contribute to making the university experience for students who experience such conditions more enjoyable.

Several recent studies (Yilmaz et al., 2017; Naylor et al., 2020) have shown that a considerable number of students experience sound tolerance problems, but estimates have been somewhat varied. However, it is believed it can range between 6%-40%.

The aim of the student survey is to determine the prevalence of hyperacusis (a heightened sensitivity to some sounds) and misophonia (having a negative response or emotion to hearing particular sounds) in the undergraduate-student population at Loughborough University, using established and newly developed measures of these disorders. The survey consists of a number of questionnaires alongside a listening task.

For the staff version, the aim is to assess lecturers’ levels of awareness of the existence of sound tolerant problems in the student body, and to study the lecturers’ attitudes towards these problems and their willingness to make adjustments for affected students.

It is hoped the results of both surveys can provide useful insights and ultimately improve the support offering for students with sound tolerance conditions.

The research has been led by four Psychology undergraduate students – Lauren Feather, Billie Fenner, Kate Plant and Georgia Wyld – under the supervision of Dr Christian Füllgrabe, an internationally-recognised hearing scientist.

How to take part

Staff can participate here.

Students can access the survey here.

Please note the survey will remain open until 17 May 2021.

As the student survey can take up to 45 minutes to complete, participants will either receive a £10 Amazon voucher as a thank you for their time, or for 1st year Psychology students, course credit via the student participation scheme. The staff alternative should take less than five minutes to finish.

To take part, students must be undergraduates aged between 18-30 years, and staff must have taught for a minimum of two years.