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Title:The Comprehension of Some Aspects of Figurative Language by Deaf and Hearing Subjects
Author(s):Giorcelli, Loretta Rae
Department / Program:Education
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Education, Special
Abstract:The study was designed to investigate the comprehension of some aspects of figurative language by deaf subjects and to compare their performances with those of hearing subjects. Three groups of deaf children and one group of hearing children were tested. Each group contained 25 children. Each hearing subject studied had an I.Q. of 80 points or more and had at least functional literacy skills, i.e., fourth grade reading level. Deaf subjects had sensorineural hearing losses of 90 dB (ANSI) or more in the better ear averaged over the speech range, i.e., 500 to 2000 Hz. Each deaf subject suffered a hearing loss before the age of two, was from a family where neither parent was deaf, and had an I.Q. of 80 points or more.
The Test of Figurative Language Competence, composed of 100 multiple-choice items in 10 categories, was created for this study. The test battery measures logical reasoning, linguistic problem solving, associative fluency, associative figurativeness, interpretation of anomaly and discrimination between paraphrases of novel and forzen (idiomatic) metaphors. Reliability, validity and usability criteria were applied to the test battery and high intercorrelations between categories were obtained. No universal order of difficulty was established for categories in the test battery, but hierarchial orders of difficulty were delineated for each group.
Anova and Scheffe contrasts procedures indicated that the hearing subjects (8-9 years) scored significantly higher than all deaf groups combined on overall test performance and on 7 of the 10 subtests. Older deaf subjects (14-20 years) outperformed the younger deaf subjects (10-14 years) on overall test performance and on 7 subtests. The hearing subjects scored significantly better than the younger deaf subjects on 9 subtests and on the overall performance.
This study suggests that increased significance be placed on the teaching of figurative language skills to deaf subjects. Reforms in reading materials for deaf students are also recommended so that written language will more accurately reflect the figurative nature of the English language.
Issue Date:1983
Description:189 p.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1983.
Other Identifier(s):(UMI)AAI8309945
Date Available in IDEALS:2014-12-15
Date Deposited:1983

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