Humanities Forum: Rob Harari, "From the ICU to Your Classroom: How Acoustics Affects Comprehension"

Wednesday, November 19, 2014 ( 1:00 pm to 2:00 pm )

Location: Morton 324, Stevens Institute of Technology

Humanities Forum: Rob Harari (Industry Associate Professor, Music & Technology)
"From the ICU to Your Classroom: How Acoustics Affects Comprehension"

In the hospital environment, there have been indicators that as a patient’s stay is extended, increased occurrences of delirium present, as well as potential impairment of cognitive ability. By comparison, the classroom environment is subject to many of the same noise sources, minus the diagnostic metering devices necessary for health care. Through spectrograph analysis, it will be possible to see what masking frequencies  generated environmentally and by diagnostic equipment – would directly interfere with the brain’s ability to interpret signals from the Cochlear membrane, to identify the frequency range directly related to speech intelligibility. This talk will explore how the acoustical profile of the patient room and classroom environment contributes to this condition. 

Rob Harari has versatility in the field of audio and music with alternating roles as a composer, music producer, audio engineer, musician, sound designer and educator. Over a 30-year career in music, Harari has been fortunate enough to work in the studio and tour with major artists while serving in multiple roles. Recently, Harari has added Clinical Researcher at Hackensack University Medical Center to the list of endeavors. 
Taking the decades of experience creating and mixing sound in a variety of venues, and combining that with an appreciation of how the audience reacts in any particular venue, Harari has explored how sound inherently causes physiological reactions in our bodies. Harari believes that if we can map the brain while analyzing specific aural signals, we can open the door to understanding how to live better through innovative design specifically focused on sound profiles of our environment.