Rethinking Sound Computer-assisted reading intervention with a phonics approach for deaf and hard of hearing children using cochlear implants or hearing aids
Sammanfattning: In the present thesis, computer-assisted reading intervention with a phonics approach was examined in deaf and hard of hearing children (DHH) aged 5, 6 or 7 years old using cochlear implants, hearing aids or a combination of both. Children with normal hearing (NH), matched for non-verbal intelligence and age, served as a reference group. Deaf and hard of hearing children constitute a heterogenetic population regarding cognitive and academic achievement. Many of them do not reach age appropriate levels in language and reading ability during their school years, with negative consequences for later training facilities and job opportunities. Finding relevant intervention methods to promote early language learning and literacy development that are easy to implement is therefore of great importance. In this thesis three aspects of cognitive ability (phonological processing skills, lexical access and working memory capacity), and reading ability was examined at three points in time; baseline 1, pre intervention and post intervention. Additionally, computer-assisted training delivered by means of the Internet in the children’s homes was explored in order to determine whether it would be a useful and efficient method for the DHH population. Overall, the results from the present thesis support the notion that offering a computer-assisted intervention program delivered at home, is an alternative way to support not only NH children with reading difficulties but also to support DHH children’s phonological development and decoding proficiency.
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