Jason Galster

Jason Galster, PhD, CCC-A, of Starkey Laboratories Inc, Eden Prairie, Minn, has received the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association’s (ASHA) Editors’ Award for the most outstanding article of the year for 2007, in conjunction with a team of researchers from Vanderbilt University.

Galster, a member of Starkey’s education and training department, was the second author on the article titled, Directional Benefit in Simulated Classroom Environments, published in The American Journal of Audiology. ASHAs criteria for choosing the top submission was based on elements such as experimental design, educational value, scientific or clinical merit, contribution to the profession, and theoretical impact.

“Starkey is committed to all aspects of research, and to the application of that research in the real world to help patients and our industry,” says Barry Freeman, PhD, director of education and training for the company. “Jason’s award is a testament of his research skill as well as the importance of the topics he is delving into.”

The paper, authored by Todd Ricketts, PhD, Galster and Anne Marie Tharpe, PhD, outlines research examining speech recognition performance and subjective ratings for directional and omnidirectional microphone modes in simulated classroom environments with children ages 10 to 17. The study found directional hearing aids can be useful in some noisy school environments, while the directional function should be limited to situations where talkers the students must hear are situated in front of them. The results highlight the importance of switching between microphone modes in the school-age population.

Galster earned his undergraduate and master’s degrees from Purdue University, and completed a PhD in audiology at Vanderbilt. Prior to joining Starkey, he worked as a pediatric audiologist at Riley Children’s Hospital, Indianapolis, and as a research audiologist at Vanderbilt. At Starkey, he fosters the philosophy of evidence-based design. Galster’s research interests include digital-signal processing, physical-room acoustics, and the application of amplification technology in hearing-impaired pediatric populations.