Literacy Among Deaf Students

Essay by natalia09University, Bachelor's June 2014

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Literacy Among Deaf Students

Deafness can be defined as extreme hearing impairment to the degree that a person cannot understand speech even in the presence of amplification (Rodda and Grove, 1987). A person can have a mild, moderate, severe or profound hearing loss. These terms are used to define the type of hearing loss a deaf person has. Mild means that the person has difficultly hearing faint or distant speech, even when it is quiet. Moderate means the person can hear conversational speech but only at a close distance. People who are severely deaf can't hear conversational speech at all. Profoundly deaf means that the person may hear loud sounds but that is all (Andrews, Leigh, and Weiner, 2004). About 2 to 3 out of every 1,000 children in the United States are born deaf or hard of hearing. According to Owens, Metz, and Farinella, there are approximately 10% or 31.5

million people in the Unites States that have some degree of hearing loss and that this number is expected to reach 40 million by 2025 (2011). Over 90% of these children are born to parents who can hear. Parents have to learn to communicate with their children in a way that they are not used to, they are basically learning a new language if they decided to teach their child ASL and assimilate them into the Deaf Community. Parents of deaf or hard of hearing children face many challenges, including the misconceptions concerning deaf people. Many people have the misconception that because someone is born deaf, that the person has a mental disability. And because a deaf person has a mental disability, that he or she is illiterate, or just not as literate as someone who can hear. This is not true. No matter if a child is...