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ERIC Number: ED552095
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 259
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-2678-9923-1
Deaf Families with Children Who Have Cochlear Implants: Perspectives and Beliefs on Bilingualism in American Sign Language and English
Mitchiner, Julie Cantrell
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, George Mason University
This study examines Deaf parents with children who have cochlear implants on their beliefs and perspectives of bilingualism in American Sign Language and English using complementary mixed methods through surveys and follow-up interviews. Seventeen families participated in the survey and eight families continued their participation in semi-formal follow-up interviews. Findings show a majority of the Deaf families in the study exhibit positive beliefs and perspectives towards using both English and ASL for their children with cochlear implants and set high expectations for their children to become equally fluent in both languages, including English. However, American Sign Language is perceived to be essential for effective communication among families as well as for developing a strong identity as a Deaf person and a foundation for learning English. Parents' beliefs and perspectives towards both languages may stem from their own experiences being Deaf and being bilingual. They value both languages as part of their children's lives for social, academic, and cognitive gains. Most of the families used ASL with their children since birth and continued to use ASL after their children have received cochlear implants. Several families have added the use of spoken language at home to support their children's spoken language development after implantation. Parents expressed some challenges and solutions to maintain bilingualism with their children. Ensuring that their children have sufficient exposure to both languages was the most common challenge expressed by the families. Finding the right educational placement for their child was also difficult for many families. Families sought different ways to support their children's language development through technology, speech therapy services, and interacting with spoken language models. Parents with deaf children who have cochlear implants, regardless if they are hearing or deaf, may benefit from learning about the advantages as well as the challenges of maintaining bilingualism in sign and spoken languages and being part of both the deaf and hearing communities. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A