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Technology-Assisted Language Intervention for Children who are Deaf or Hard-of-Hearing

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The long term objective of this research is to facilitate language development and subsequent communication and social functioning of young children who are deaf or hard-of-hearing (DHH). Despite early identification and intervention, hearing loss continues to have a life-long impact on independent functioning among children who are deaf or hard-of-hearing (DHH). Based on recent findings, many of these children are at risk of language delay in grammar, lexicon, and phonology. Children who are DHH also demonstrate significant delays in pragmatic language skills. There is a lack of evidenced-based practice regarding language interventions for this population. Augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) is an evidence-based approach that targets core communication deficits in children with complex communication needs. Research has suggested that children who are DHH would likely benefit from interventions that directly teach language structures. We proposed to combine augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) strategies with up-to-date and socially acceptable technology (i.e., iPadsĀ®) to enhance language development in children who are DHH who continue to display clinically significant gaps in language. This pilot study focuses on the feasibility of such an intervention and the effectiveness of the intervention on language development.

Author(s):

Sandra Grether    
Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center
United States

Rose McAuley    
Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center
United States

Jareen Meinzen-Derr    
Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center
United States

 

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