Computer-assisted training of phoneme-grapheme correspondence for children who are deaf and hard of hearing: Effects on phonological processing skills

Cecilia Nakeva von Mentzer*, Björn Lyxell, Birgitta Sahlén, Malin Wass, Magnus Lindgren, Marianne Ors, Petter Kallioinen, Inger Uhlén

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    21 Citations (Scopus)


    Objective: Examine deaf and hard of hearing (DHH) children's phonological processing skills in relation to a reference group of children with normal hearing (NH) at two baselines pre intervention. Study the effects of computer-assisted phoneme-grapheme correspondence training in the children. Specifically analyze possible effects on DHH children's phonological processing skills. Methods: The study included 48 children who participated in a computer-assisted intervention study, which focuses on phoneme-grapheme correspondence. Children were 5, 6, and 7 years of age. There were 32 DHH children using cochlear implants (CI) or hearing aids (HA), or both in combination, and 16 children with NH. The study had a quasi-experimental design with three test occasions separated in time by four weeks; baseline 1 and 2 pre intervention, and 3 post intervention. Children performed tasks measuring lexical access, phonological processing, and letter knowledge. All children were asked to practice ten minutes per day at home supported by their parents. Results: NH children outperformed DHH children on the majority of tasks. All children improved their accuracy in phoneme-grapheme correspondence and output phonology as a function of the computer-assisted intervention. For the whole group of children, and specifically for children with CI, a lower initial phonological composite score was associated with a larger phonological change between baseline 2 and post intervention. Finally, 18 DHH children, whereof 11 children with CI, showed specific intervention effects on their phonological processing skills, and strong effect sizes for their improved accuracy of phoneme-grapheme correspondence. Conclusion: For some DHH children phonological processing skills are boosted relatively more by phoneme-grapheme correspondence training. This reflects the reciprocal relationship between phonological change and exposure to and manipulations of letters.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)2049-2057
    Number of pages9
    JournalInternational Journal of Pediatric Otorhinolaryngology
    Issue number12
    Publication statusPublished - Dec 2013


    • Children
    • Cochlear implants
    • Computer-assisted intervention
    • Deaf and hard of hearing
    • Hearing aids
    • Phonological processing skills


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