Speech and language development in a parent-infant total communication program

A. Dee, I. Rapin, R. J. Ruben

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


In the program described, the use of total communication (TC) did not impede speech development in preschool deaf children. Evidence indicates that sign language facilitated the young hearing-impaired child's acquisition of communicative oral speech. Exposure to sign language combined with speech enhanced the meaningfulness of residual hearing and lipreading. Milestones in sign language acquisition paralleled the milestone of spoken language. Young hearing-impaired TC children appeared to learn and express more language at an earlier age than is typical of orally trained hearing-impaired children. This implies that their cognition may not be as severely inhibited because their language acquisition is less severely delayed. This should have favorable consequences for later educational and social development. The families in the TC program were able to normalize their child-rearing activities and relationships.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)62-72
Number of pages11
JournalAnnals of Otology, Rhinology and Laryngology
Issue number5 II Suppl. 97
StatePublished - 1982

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology


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