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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Relationships between cognitive processes and language abilities among hearing-impaired readers Booth, Janice Ann


The purpose of the study was to investigate the relationships among reading, language, and cognitive functioning within a hearing-impaired population. Tasks of vocabulary, comprehension, syntactic ability, internal speech, temporal/spatial coding, and intelligence were administered to 120 eight to eighteen year old students with a hearing threshold level (better-ear average) greater than 60 dB (ANSI). Result of stepwise multiple regression analyses showed that age and syntactic ability accounted for 28 and 42%, respectively, of the explained variability of reading comprehension. In addition to these variables the contributions of vocabulary, intelligence, internal speech, and gender resulted in a total of 79.5% of the variance of reading comprehension attributable to the measured variable. Degree of Internal Speech was found to be significantly related to performance on tasks of vocabulary, comprehension, and syntactic ability when scores were adjusted for intelligence. Results of a sub-study conducted with 40 students using a modified task of temporal/spatial coding revealed that altering rate of presentation and display affected students' response preferences. The incongruent temporal/spatial presentation of digits at an increased rate was better able to discriminate between those hearing-impaired students who responded temporally or spatially than presentation of digits at a slower rate. Relationships between temporal/spatial coding and internal speech warrant further investigation. Limitations and implications of this research are discussed.

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