A NEW computer-based programme is being launched in Southampton today that will enable profoundly deaf people to listen to music.

After three years of development, the Interactive Music Awareness Programme (IMAP) will be launched at the University of Southampton which will help cochlear implant (CI) users hear music more clearly.

The IMAP is a free, online rehabilitation programme that has been developed with adult CI users through a series of consultations, music workshops and a trial. The programme guides the user through sessions with video instructions on interactive applications. These applications allow the user to create, manipulate and play music using different combinations of instruments, pitch ranges and rhythms in order to improve their listening experience.

The new online IMAP also includes a larger library of music, featuring artists such as Sir Cliff Richard and 10cc.

Dr Ben Oliver, from the university, said: “We hope that IMAP helps CI users re-engage with music and help them recognise specific features of music through their implant.”