A Longitudinal Evaluation of the Speech Perception Capabilities of Children Using Multichannel Tactile Vocoders Thirty children (mean age 6:11, range 4:3 to 11:0, SD = 2:3) with profound hearing impairments were followed longitudinally over a 3-year period and evaluated every 6 months with a battery of speech perception tests. The battery spanned several levels of perception, from pattern perception to open-set word recognition. The ... Research Article
Research Article  |   June 01, 1996
A Longitudinal Evaluation of the Speech Perception Capabilities of Children Using Multichannel Tactile Vocoders
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Rebecca E. Eilers
    Mailman Center for Child Development and Department of Psychology, University of Miami, Coral Gables, FL
  • Alan B. Cobo-Lewis
    Mailman Center for Child Development and Department of Psychology, University of Miami, Coral Gables, FL
  • Kathleen C. Vergara
    Mailman Center for Child Development and Department of Psychology, University of Miami, Coral Gables, FL
  • D. Kimbrough Oller
    Mailman Center for Child Development and Department of Psychology, University of Miami, Coral Gables, FL
  • Karen E. Friedman
    Mailman Center for Child Development and Department of Psychology, University of Miami, Coral Gables, FL
  • Contact author: Rebecca E. Eilers, PhD, Psychology Annex, University of Miami, P.O. Box 249229, Coral Gables, FL 33124-0721. E-mail: reilers@peds.med.miami.edu
Article Information
Hearing & Speech Perception / Hearing Disorders / Hearing Aids, Cochlear Implants & Assistive Technology / School-Based Settings / Speech, Voice & Prosody / Hearing / Research Articles
Research Article   |   June 01, 1996
A Longitudinal Evaluation of the Speech Perception Capabilities of Children Using Multichannel Tactile Vocoders
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 1996, Vol. 39, 518-533. doi:10.1044/jshr.3903.518
History: Received May 1, 1995 , Accepted January 22, 1996
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 1996, Vol. 39, 518-533. doi:10.1044/jshr.3903.518
History: Received May 1, 1995; Accepted January 22, 1996

Thirty children (mean age 6:11, range 4:3 to 11:0, SD = 2:3) with profound hearing impairments were followed longitudinally over a 3-year period and evaluated every 6 months with a battery of speech perception tests. The battery spanned several levels of perception, from pattern perception to open-set word recognition. The children were all enrolled in a single full-day educational program that used multichannel tactile aids in addition to hearing aids. Testing was conducted in Auditory alone (A), Tactile plus Auditory (TA), Tactile alone (T), and in one instance, Tactile plus Auditory plus Vision (TAV) conditions because the primary interest of the work was the relationship between auditory and tactile training on perception. Results indicated that children’s performance improved with age, with the oldest children achieving open-set speech recognition in the TA condition. Performance in the TA condition generally exceeded that in both A and T conditions. Outcomes were compared to those from two studies in the literature for children of similar age with cochlear implants and tactile aids on the same tests. Results suggest that performance of children who had cochlear implants for an average of 21 months was similar to TA and TAV performance of children in the present study who had tactile experience over a similar period.

Acknowledgments
This research was supported by DOE NIDRR grant #H133 G10118 to Rebecca Eilers. Our thanks go to Kelly Meyers-Sinett, Dina Williams, Maria C Vergara, Laura Adt, Maria Escobar, and especially Roberta Turner, without whom this monumental undertaking would never have been completed.
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