Spoken language and everyday functioning in 5-year-old children using hearing aids or cochlear implants

Linda Cupples*, Teresa YC Ching, Laura Button, Mark Seeto, Vicky Zhang, Jessica Whitfield, Miriam Gunnourie, Louise Martin, Vivienne Marnane

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    63 Citations (Scopus)


    Objective: This study investigated the factors influencing 5-year language, speech and everyday functioning of children with congenital hearing loss. Design: Standardised tests including PLS-4, PPVT-4 and DEAP were directly administered to children. Parent reports on language (CDI) and everyday functioning (PEACH) were collected. Regression analyses were conducted to examine the influence of a range of demographic variables on outcomes. Study sample: Participants were 339 children enrolled in the Longitudinal Outcomes of Children with Hearing Impairment (LOCHI) study. Results: Children’s average receptive and expressive language scores were approximately 1 SD below the mean of typically developing children, and scores on speech production and everyday functioning were more than 1 SD below. Regression models accounted for 70–23% of variance in scores across different tests. Earlier CI switch-on and higher non-verbal ability were associated with better outcomes in most domains. Earlier HA fitting and use of oral communication were associated with better outcomes on directly administered language assessments. Severity of hearing loss and maternal education influenced outcomes of children with HAs. The presence of additional disabilities affected outcomes of children with CIs. Conclusions: The findings provide strong evidence for the benefits of early HA fitting and early CI for improving children’s outcomes.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)S55-S69
    Number of pages15
    JournalInternational Journal of Audiology
    Issue numbersup2
    Early online date12 Sept 2017
    Publication statusPublished - 2018


    • children
    • hearing loss
    • language and speech
    • hearing aids
    • cochlear implants
    • early intervention
    • predictors of outcomes
    • everyday functioning


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