Patti M. Johnstone, Ph.D.

Research Interests

The focus of my research with students and colleagues involves hearing in children, specifically: spatial and binaural hearing; aided and prosthetic hearing; informational masking; and hearing loss prevention.

Graduate students and I are starting a major research project, funded by the American Academy of Audiology Foundation, investigating the effect of personal amplification on sound localization ability in children with unilateral sensorineural hearing loss.

Other studies with UT colleague, Dr. Michael Kotowski, investigate the efficacy of specific messages and media in conveying the hazards of leisure (nonoccupational) excessive noise exposure to young people and in persuading them to take measures to protect their hearing.


  • B.A., Loma Linda University (1981)
  • M.A., University of Buffalo (SUNY) (1983)
  • M.A., University of Buffalo (SUNY) (1984)
  • Ph.D., University of Wisconsin-Madison (2006)

Recent Honors and Awards

  • 2008 - American Academy of Audiology Foundation (2008-2009)
    Awarded funding to complete a research project entitled: Sound Source Identification Ability and Minimum Audible Angle Thresholds in Children with Unilateral Sensorineural Hearing Loss: The Effect of Amplification. ($10,000)
  • 2008 - Widex Pediatric Hearing Assistance Program – Loaner Network (2008-2009) Clinic program grant that provides immediate access to advanced digital hearing aids as loaner hearing aids for infants and young children during the waiting period for their permanent personal amplification solution. ($10,000)
  • 2008 - New Investigator Award, American Academy of Audiology Foundation. May/2008-Apr/2009, Awarded funding to complete a study at the University of Tennessee entitled: Sound Source Identification Ability and Minimum Audible Angle Thresholds in Children with Unilateral Sensorineural Hearing Loss: The Effect of Amplification.
  • 2007 - Alexander Graham Bell Cochlear Implant Fellowship (2007-2008) Training grant to provide graduate-level clinical training to an audiology graduate student at the University of Tennessee in aural habilitation services to children with cochlear implants. ($15,000)
  • 2004 - Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (Individual Fellowship), Sept/2004-Aug/2006, Awarded fellowship to complete dissertation research project Stimulus Uncertainty in a “Cocktail Party” Environment (NIH/NIDCD Research Grant F31-DC006785-01A1).

Representative Publications

  • Johnstone, P. M., Nábelek, A. K., and Robertson, V.S. (2010). Sound localization acuity in children with unilateral hearing loss who wear a hearing aid in the impaired ear. Journal of the American Academy of Audiology, 21, 522-534.
  • Alworth, L.N., Plyler, P.N., Bertges, M. and Johnstone, P. (2010). The effects of receiver placement on probe microphone, performance and subjective measures with open canal hearing instruments. Journal of the American Academy of Audiology, 21, 249-266.
  • Horner, J., Schwarz, I., Jackson, R., Johnstone, P., Mulligan, M., Roberts, K., and Sohlberg, M. (2009). “Developing an essential functions rubric: Purposes and applications.” Allied Health Journal, 38, 242-247.
  • Lowery, K.J., von Hapsburg, D., Plyler, E.L., and Johnstone, P.M. (2009). A comparison of video versus conventional visual reinforcement in 7 to 16 month old infants. Journal of Speech Language and Hearing Research. 51(8), 731-742.
  • Johnstone, P. (2008). “Toward evidence-based practice in the auditory processing disorders clinic.” Perspectives in Audiology. Division 6 on Auditory Processing. American Speech Language Hearing Association.
  • Johnstone, P.M. and Litovsky, R.Y. (2006). Effect of masker type and age on speech intelligibility and spatial release from masking in children and adults. Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, 120, 2177-2189.
  • Litovsky, R.Y, Johnstone, P.M., and Godar, S. (2006). Benefits of bilateral cochlear implants and/or hearing aids in children. International Journal of Audiology, 45, 1-13.
  • Litovsky, R.Y., Johnstone, P.M., Godar, S., Agrawal, S., Parkinson, A., Peters, R., Lake, J. (2006). Bilateral cochlear implants in children: Localization acuity measured with minimum audible angle. Ear & Hearing, 27(1), 43-59.
  • Litovsky, R.Y., Parkinson, A., Arcaroli, J., Peters, R., Lake, J., Johnstone, P., & Yu, G. (2004). Bilateral cochlear implants in adults and children. Annals of Otolaryngology, Head & Neck Surgery, 130, 648-655.
  • Johnstone, P.M. (1995). “A glimpse of an IPA as a living system.” Behavioral Science, 40(4): 304-313.

Courses Taught

  • ASP 510- Clinical Education Seminars
  • ASP 511- Introduction to Research Methods
  • ASP 545- Sound Measurement and Hearing Conservation
  • ASP 613- Externship in Audiology

patti johnstone

Contact Information

Patti M. Johnstone
Associate Professor

Department of Audiology and Speech Pathology
University of Tennessee
444 S. Stadium Hall
Knoxville, TN 37996-0740

Phone: (865) 974-3319