Document Details

Document Type:   Thesis
Title:   Novel Word Learning of Children with Hearing Impairment and Children with Typical Hearing
Author:   Matthew Ryan Clark
College:   College of Health Professions
Degree Program:   Communication Disorders, M.S.
Degree:   Master of Arts
Committee Director:   Dr. Mary Reynolds, PhD/CCC-SLP
Document Availability:   Document available for World-Wide access.
Date of Defense:   04/10/2009

Children with hearing impairment may be at risk for reading difficulty due, in part, to delayed vocabulary development. However, advances in amplification technology, most notably cochlear implant technology, make it possible for children with profound hearing loss to acquire oral language. This study asked if novel word learning differed between children with typical hearing and those with severe to profound hearing loss who either wore hearing aids or had cochlear implants. Children learned nonsense words as names for Beanie Babies during a play scenario and were later asked to identify and name each Beanie Baby using its correct nonsense word name. Results showed no significant difference in novel word learning between children with hearing impairment and those with typical hearing. Additionally, novel word learning strongly correlated to phonological working memory, spontaneous vocabulary measures, age of implantation, and length of speech and language therapy in children with hearing impairment.  

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