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Executive Functioning, Communicative Competence and Behavior Disorders in Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Students

Keywords: hard-of-hearing students , executive functioning , communicative competence , behavior disorders

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Abstract:

Because of restricted auditory perception many deaf and hard of hearing (D/HH) students are jeopardized in a manifold manner for their linguistic, cognitive and socio-emotional development. In this study socio-emotional problems of D/HH school-aged students are discussed in the context of executive functioning and communicative competence. Executive functions were assessed for a sample of 145 students by their teachers with a German version of Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Functions (BRIEF-D)“. In addition a questionnaire measuring communicative competence was administered as well as a questionnaire on socio-emotional problems (German version of the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire; SDQ-D). The results show a significantly higher rate of problems in developing executive functions for all scales, and significant relationships of the BRIEF scales with the SDQ-D scales. Path analysis reveals the important contributions of executive functions, communicative competence and sex for socio-emotional problems. Additional information is drawn from analyzing sociodemographic and deaf related characteristics. The relevance of the findings for pedagogical work is discussed. A specific focus on competencies like self-efficacy or self-control in educational concepts for D/HH students seems to be necessary in addition to extending language competencies.

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