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Is Oral Communication An Effective Approach For Hearing Impaired Children With Cochlear Implant?

1536 words - 7 pages

Michael is a 2 year, 6 month old boy. He was born healthy and full term. Following failure of his newborn hearing screening, Michael was identified with a bilateral severe sensorineural hearing loss. At 3 months of age he was fit with hearing aids and began a home intervention program. He received a cochlear implant at 18 months and continues to wear a hearing aid on his contralateral ear. Michael has met all motor milestones expected of children his age. He is using single word utterances and has a vocabulary of 30 words. His parents feel that he is intelligible about 50% of the time. My concern for Michael is what educational and/ or aural rehabilitative approaches might help him achieve the most progress with his current amplification. In hearing impaired children with cochlear implants is oral-communication an effective approach for facilitating language?
Oral-communication is used by people with normal hearing, as well as some hearing impaired individuals. A child with a hearing impairment speaks their messages and will use auditory information and speechreading to receive a message. Oral communication is a multisensory approach since it uses both auditory (hearing) and visual cues. While children are learning to talk they will rely on their residual hearing, speechreading, and sometimes touch. According to Tye-Murray (2009) children in oral educational programs are more likely to achieve better speech intelligibility than children in total communication programs. Tye-Murray (2009) also states that several studies have shown children who use a cochlear implant and are in an oral-communication program develop better speech and language skills, as well as better speech perception than children who communicate with sign.
One study investigated the relationship of spoken language between auditory only and audiovisual measures in hearing impaired children who had received cochlear implants. The Common Phrase Test, which measures a person’s ability to understand everyday phrases, was used to measure speech perception. Scores were obtained under three different presentation conditions including auditory only, visual only, and audiovisual. The Lexical Neighborhood Test (LNT) and Multisyllabic Lexical Neighborhood Test (MLNT) were used to obtain word recognition scores under auditory only conditions. Both of these tests have “Easy” and “Hard” items. Easy items are words that commonly occur in everyday conversation with few phonologically similar words. Hard words are words that aren’t used often and have many phonologically similar words they can easily be confused with (Lachs, Pisoni, and Kirk, 2001). Researchers also used the Phonetically Balanced Kindergarten word list to obtain auditory alone measures. In order to measure receptive language abilities the Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test (PPVT) was administered. The test items were given using either speech (oral-communication) or sign (total communication), depending on the child’s...

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