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Learning to Remediate Sound Localization in the Median Plane Using a Virtual Auditory Display

Previous studies have shown the efficacy of sound localization training with non-individual head-related transfer functions (HRTFs) using a virtual auditory display (VAD) in the horizontal plane. The efficiency of training of sound localization in the upper part of the median plane was experimentally examined in this study. During each training session, noise stimuli for nine elevation angles were prepared, and each of them was presented five times in random order with feedback regarding the correct position. During test sessions, in contrast, music stimuli for ten elevation angles were tested. Just one training session was required to induce a significant learning effect with regard to remediation of sound localization, while a ceiling effect was observed by three sessions. Seven training sessions resulted in the persistence of learning efficacy for over one month. The efficiency of short periods of training will enable us to utilize a VAD with non-individual HRTFs in various applications.

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