Communication Behaviors of Infants With Hearing Loss and Their Hearing Mothers This study documented communication behaviors of hearing mothers and infants with a hearing loss that had been identified before 9 months of age (Group HL). Their behaviors were compared with those of mothers and infants without hearing loss (Group H). Each group was composed of 18 dyads videotaped during mother-infant ... Research Article
Research Article  |   April 01, 1993
Communication Behaviors of Infants With Hearing Loss and Their Hearing Mothers
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Patricia Elizabeth Spencer
    Gallaudet Research Institute Gallaudet University, Washington, DC
Article Information
Hearing & Speech Perception / Hearing Disorders / Language / Research Articles
Research Article   |   April 01, 1993
Communication Behaviors of Infants With Hearing Loss and Their Hearing Mothers
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, April 1993, Vol. 36, 311-321. doi:10.1044/jshr.3602.311
History: Received September 24, 1991 , Accepted September 22, 1992
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, April 1993, Vol. 36, 311-321. doi:10.1044/jshr.3602.311
History: Received September 24, 1991; Accepted September 22, 1992

This study documented communication behaviors of hearing mothers and infants with a hearing loss that had been identified before 9 months of age (Group HL). Their behaviors were compared with those of mothers and infants without hearing loss (Group H). Each group was composed of 18 dyads videotaped during mother-infant play with toys at 12- and 18-months. Group HL mothers produced more gestural and tactile communications (but similar numbers of vocal communications) compared to H mothers. In contrast with earlier reports, infants with and without hearing loss were similar in quantity of gestural and vocal expressive prelinguistic communication behaviors. Despite group similarities in quantity of prelinguistic communications, H infants as a group surpassed HL infants in expression of formal language by 18 months. There was considerable variation within each group in formal language expression, however, with performance of some HL infants matching that of H infants.

Acknowledgments
This research was supported by the Division of Maternal and Child Health, Bureau of Health Care Delivery and Assistance (Grant #MCJ-110563), and the Gallaudet Research Institute.
I thank Kathryn Meadow-Orlans for her support for this project and her assistance in preparation of this paper. I also thank Patricia Albee, Lynne Siegel, Karen Solomon, and Michael Tierney for performing the coding of videotapes and Suzanne Scott for categorizing hearing levels of infants with hearing loss.
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