Teresa Y. C. Ching1,2, Linda Cupples2, Mark Seeto1, Vicky Zhang1,2, Carmen Kung1,2
National Acoustic Laboratories, Sydney, Australia
2Department of Linguistics, Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia

The presence of congenital permanent childhood hearing loss (PCHL) reduces auditory access to spectral and temporal cues in the speech signal, thereby influencing the development of auditory processing and language abilities in children. Despite early detection and intervention, weaknesses in listening in noise and language development in children with PCHL have been documented. Even though concurrent relationships between these abilities have been examined, there has been little research on how the ability to recognize speech in noise develops from preschool to school age, and on the direction of the relationship between speech recognition and language abilities. Increased knowledge about development of these abilities and their potentially predictive relationship has important implications for theoretical understanding of the mechanisms that underlie development after treatment of sensory deprivation (in this case, providing cochlear implants to children with profound PCHL); and clinical implications to guide management of children for improving outcomes. In this paper, the influence of speech recognition at age 5 years on language ability at age 9 years will be examined using cross-lagged correlation analyses of data from a group of children with profound hearing loss who were followed as part of the Longitudinal Outcomes of Children with Hearing Impairment (LOCHI) study.

Acknowledgements: The project described was partly supported by Award Number R01DC008080 from the National Institute On Deafness And Other Communication Disorders. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institute On Deafness And Other Communication Disorders or the National Institutes of Health. The project was also supported by the Commonwealth of Australia through the Office of Hearing Services and the HEARing Cooperative Reserach Centre.