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The Benefits Of Advances In Communication For The Visual Or Hearing Impaired

2771 words - 11 pages

The Benefits of Advances in Communication for the Visual or Hearing Impaired

Language is a means of communication that people use to interact with others in society. Generally, language comprises vocal sounds to which meanings have been assigned by cultural convention and often supplemented by various gestures. (Sharma, 30) For any 'normal' person, language is no longer viewed as a tool to acquire: language is placed as a standard and basic skill, almost being considered given at birth. Such an idea about language is reasonable when taking into account how the development of speech and language is acquired in early childhood. But as a rule, such a 'standard and basic' process of language development is only relevant to 'normal' people, those without any sensory impairments such as blindness or deafness. For the blind and the deaf, acquiring and developing language is a studious process - the blind having to depend extensively on their hearing, and the deaf depending extensively on their vision. With restricted sensory abilities on thorough development of language, both the blind and the deaf can be limited to possible communication and interaction with others in society. Consequently, many computer related technological inventions and improvements have been developed, and both the blind and the deaf have significantly benefited from these innovations as a way of having wider access and use of language in day-to-day living.

Indeed until an emergence of technological innovations, the blind and the deaf suffered limited access of communication and interaction with others, among many other things. In order to fully understand and analyze affects of technological innovations on language development, social interactions, and communication means of the blind and the deaf, we first consider language acquisition and development of the blind and the deaf in comparison to the language development of the 'normal'. Then, we consider difficulties that the blind and the deaf face in their communication and interaction with others. Finally, after identifying the difficulties, we then focus on different technological innovations and improvements that concentrate to ease such difficulties for the blind and the deaf, thus providing them wider access and use of language especially in their everyday life.

First, let's consider the difference for people with visual and hearing impairments to acquire the use of language in comparison to the 'standard and basic' language development process. From age 0 month to 6 months, babies typically learn most basic communicating language skills such as crying and babbling to express different feelings they experiences. Also, they start to recognize and look for familiar voices and sounds. (Oesterriech) The development of typical language skills of children aging 0 to 6 months primarily depends on hearing. These language skills are essentially responses to what children hear in their life. So it is presumably...

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