Principles of word learning in individuals with normal and with impaired hearing Principles of word learning in individuals with normal and with impaired hearing A critical accomplishment of childhood is the formation of a vocabulary that is sufficient to support language and literacy development. This process is slowed in children with hearing loss, such that these children have significantly smaller vocabularies compared to children with normal hearing of the same age. As a result, children with any degree of hearing loss are at significant risk for academic, social, and psychological hardships. There is thus a need for effective and efficient interventions to aid word learning in children with hearing loss. A potentially fruitful intervention is direct instruction that compliments academic curricula. However, current training regimens, of which there are few, are not based on scientific principles that promote optimal word learning and retention. We propose to evaluate the extent to which learning principles derived from examinations of perceptual learning apply to word learning in three populations: young adults with normal hearing (best word learners), children with normal hearing (poorer word learners), and children with hearing loss (poorest word learners). We plan to test three predictions about word-learning behavior that are based on a model of perceptual learning by assessing how the ability to retain newly learned vocabulary from one day to the next is affected by: the number of training trials per day (Aim 1), the inclusion of a within-day practice break (Aim 2), and the combination of instances of the word plus the item to which it refers with instances of the word alone (Aim 3). The results will provide insight into the principles that are common to perceptual and associative learning, and provide a principled approach to the design of vocabulary training regimens for children with hearing loss.
|Effective start/end date
|12/1/16 → 11/30/18
- OTHER: Domestic Non-ABOR University: $44,000.00
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