Publication Date

2014-07-29

Availability

Embargoed

Embargo Period

2016-07-28

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department

Psychology (Arts and Sciences)

Date of Defense

2014-05-05

First Committee Member

Alexandra. L. Quittner

Second Committee Member

Amanda Jensen-Doss

Third Committee Member

Ivette Cejas

Abstract

Children with hearing loss, who have substantial delays in language development, are likely to experience deficits in various aspects of social competence, such as social skills, emotional awareness, and interpersonal problem-solving. To date, few studies have measured and compared social competence in children with cochlear implants (CIs) and their hearing peers, and no studies have compared their longitudinal outcomes. Using parent, teacher, and child reports from two standardized measures, this study compared social competence in children with CIs and their hearing peers, followed by an analysis of discrepancies among these respondents over five years. Further, a latent variable of social competence was created and then modeled over time using data from parents. Several hypotheses were tested: 1) Children with CIs would have significant delays in social competence compared to their hearing peers on all measures and across all raters; 2) Fewer deficits in social competence would be observed in children implanted before vs. after age two; 3) A greater magnitude of rater discrepancies would be found between parents and teachers in the CI vs. hearing groups; 4) A greater magnitude of rater discrepancies would be found between parents and children in the CI vs. hearing groups; and 5) Using longitudinal modeling, children with CIs would display worse social competence at 48 months, but exhibit more improvement in social skills than their hearing peers over time. Results showed that children with CIs were rated as significantly delayed compared to hearing peers at all time points, according to both parent and child report. However, teachers reported no differences between the CI and hearing groups. Longitudinal modeling of the parent data revealed that children with CIs were significantly delayed compared to their hearing peers at 48, 72, and 96 months post-implantation and demonstrated minimal evidence of catch-up over a 5-year period. The magnitude of interrater discrepancies did not vary as a function of hearing status, but correlations among raters were low. These results indicated that children with CIs continue to experience delays in social competence even 8 years following implantation and, to date, no interventions exist to address these deficits.

Keywords

Cochlear Implants; Social Development; Deaf; Longitudinal Trajectories

Share

COinS