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Ecological Momentary Assessment (EMA) is a method for evaluating hearing problems in real life where test participants repeatedly report on the current situation. Thus, hearing difficulties in many different situations can be assessed in real time avoiding memory bias. However, answering smartphone-based surveys in all kinds of situations can be burdensome and sometimes collides with the desire to continue pursuing the current activity or with social norms of politeness. These norms vary between societies. Also, the perception of smartphone usage in social situations depends on the culture of the test participants and their peers. In an EMA study with 20 German bilateral hearing aid wearers, Schinkel-Bielefeld et al (2020) found that social situations are the main reason that questionnaires are not answered and that situations classified as speech in noise are underrepresented in the questionnaires. Compared to Germany, Singapore has a higher rate of smart phone users (also in the elderly population), longer average screen time on mobile devices and a lesser willingness to part with those devices. Therefore, we replicated this study with 10 Singaporean hearing aid wearers (age 47 to 73, mean hearing loss 57.5 dB HL). Over the course of two weeks they were triggered at random times to fill out EMA questionnaires. If triggers were not answered, we asked for the reason the questionnaire was missed. Furthermore, subjects reported on reasons for not carrying along the mobile phone. In contrast to the German subjects, Singapore participants rarely reported social interaction as the reason for having missed a questionnaire. Instead, they more often indicated technical problems with the app. While German subjects also encountered technical problems, those were rarely given as a reason not to fill out questionnaires. Thus, EMA studies targeting social situations may be easier or more reliable in populations with frequent mobile phone usage. Email Address: Available Dates: 3 May 2021
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