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Res Pract Persons Severe Disabl. 2008 Mar;33(1-2):59-70.

Increasing Communication in Children With Concurrent Vision and Hearing Loss.

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  • 1University of Kansas, Lawrence.

Abstract

Nine children with complex communication needs and concurrent vision and hearing losses participated in an intervention program aimed at increasing intentional prelinguistic communication. The intervention constituted a pilot, descriptive study of an adapted version of prelinguistic milieu teaching, hence referred to as A-PMT. In A-PMT, natural gestures and vocalizations were targeted in child-focused, one-on-one activities conducted by a member of the project staff. Adaptations included using more physical prompts than in other forms of PMT and using means other than directed eye gaze to determine directionality of gestures. All nine participants increased their rates of initiated, intentional communication substantially during the course of intervention; in addition, each participant acquired new forms of natural gestures. Results were limited primarily to requests (as opposed to other communication functions). Discussion centers on how to promote more generalized communication developments in future implementations of the program.

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