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Title:Capturing and Maintaining Deaf Toddler Gaze in Pretend Play: A Comparison of Dyads With Deaf and Hearing Mothers
Author(s):Prendergast, Susan Georgia
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):McCollum, Jeanette A.
Department / Program:Education
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Education, Special
Abstract:An examination of behaviors related to joint attention during toy play in eight deaf mother-deaf toddler and eight hearing mother-deaf toddler dyads was conducted. The gaze patterns of the 18- to 28-month-old toddlers and selected aspects of maternal communicative behavior were analyzed to determine the relative success of the two groups of mothers in capturing and maintaining their toddlers' gaze and to determine if any differences in maternal behavior related to that success.
Statistical analysis of the two groups of eight dyads each revealed that the deaf mother group used longer gazes at their mothers and spent more time looking at their mothers while their mothers signed, but spent no less time focusing on objects, than the hearing mother group. The deaf mothers signed and gestured more, but both hearing and deaf mothers modified most of their signs in a variation on motherese. The groups did not differ in the use of repetition and nonconventional placement, but the deaf mothers used attention getting, pointing, exaggeration and holding the referent of their commentary more than the hearing mothers. Relationships among the various measures were markedly different within the two groups; most of the "motherese" modifications were not related to mutual gaze during maternal signing for the deaf mother group but were often strongly related for the hearing mother group.
Analysis of group differences was complicated by the presence of two subgroups within the hearing mother group; one subgroup was very similar to the deaf mother group in the maternal and toddler measures (engaged subgroup), while the other displayed fewer instances of the behaviors measured (unengaged). The presence of the subgroups within the hearing mother group appeared to contribute to the different patterns of relationships. Possible reasons for the existence of the subgroups and implications for facilitating development of visual communication skills in hearing caregivers of deaf children are discussed.
Issue Date:1992
Description:134 p.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1992.
Other Identifier(s):(UMI)AAI9305657
Date Available in IDEALS:2014-12-16
Date Deposited:1992

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