Date of Award

Spring 1-1-2015

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Speech, Language & Hearing Sciences

First Advisor

Christine Yoshinaga-Itano

Second Advisor

Allison Sedey

Third Advisor

Eliana Colunga

Fourth Advisor

Jill Gilkerson

Fifth Advisor

Pui Fong Kan


Children with hearing loss may demonstrate speech and language delays as a result of reduced auditory access. Though this population historically has exhibited delayed or deviant speech and language, there have been decreases in the average age of identification as a result of Universal Newborn Hearing Screening and advancements in cochlear implants and hearing aids over the last 20 years to improve these outcomes. Three studies are presented addressing different areas of speech and language development where progress has been noted as compared to historical outcomes. Phoneme development is described for children with hearing loss ages 4 years to 7 years and compared to normal hearing typically developing peers. Specific demographic factors impacting phoneme development are considered and evaluated using Hierarchical Linear Modeling (HLM). The school and home language environment is described using LENA (Language Environment Analysis). Additionally, LENA is used to assess the impact of parent education. Implications for clinical practice are discussed as they pertain to developing speech and language in young children with hearing loss.