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Publication Detail
Reward enhances online participants’ engagement with a demanding auditory task
Online recruitment platforms are increasingly utilized for experimental research. Crowdsourcing is associated with numerous benefits but also notable constraints, including lack of control over participants’ environment and engagement. In the context of auditory experiments, these limitations may be particularly detrimental to threshold-based tasks that require effortful listening. Here, we ask whether incorporating a performance-based monetary bonus will improve speech reception performance of online participants. In two experiments, participants performed an adaptive matrix-type speech-in-noise task (where listeners select two key words out of closed sets). In Experiment 1, our results revealed worse performance in online (N = 49) compared with in-lab (N = 81) groups. Specifically, relative to the in-lab cohort, significantly fewer participants in the online group achieved very low (< -17dB) thresholds. In Experiment 2 (N = 200), we show that a monetary reward improved listeners’ threshold to levels similar to those observed in the lab setting. Overall the results suggest that providing a small performance-based bonus increases participants’ task-engagement, facilitating a more accurate estimation of auditory ability under challenging listening conditions.
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Speech, Hearing & Phonetic Sciences
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