PSYCHOSOCIAL DEVELOPMENT OF DHH CHILDREN: OBSTACLES AND STRATEGIES FOR PROMOTING SELF-CONCEPT AND SOCIALIZATION
University of the Free State, Faculty of Humanities, Department of SASL & Deaf Studies (SOUTH AFRICA)
About this paper:
Conference name: 14th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 4-6 July, 2022
Location: Palma, Spain
Abstract:Due to a lack of sufficient socialization, many Deaf-and-hard-of-hearing (DHH) children born to hearing parents encounter greater social hurdles than typical growing hearing children. Socialization begins at a young age, when parents communicate their moral ideas, expectations, and social "rules" to their infants. This presents a problem for many deaf children growing up in hearing homes, as they are deprived from this essential communication process that begins shortly after birth. Numerous language barriers, such as hearing parents' inability to communicate effectively in sign language or any other mode of communication, can result in a breakdown of communication between a hearing parent and his or her DHH child – whether due to a lack of sign language and/or aural/oral modes of communication. As a result, the basis for social skills development in some of these deaf learners is not established at an early age. The former can have far-reaching consequences later in life, most notably upon school enrollment and even as adults, by reducing prospects for effective socialization as a consequence of reduced communication options beginning in infancy. The purpose of this article is to investigate the effect of specific psychosocial and biographical variables on the psychosocial development of deaf students (which inter alia includes their self-concept and socialization experiences). This paper investigates four major elements that affect the socialization experiences of DHH children: Child-related variables, parental factors, cultural and school-related variables. More precisely, the article will examine the effect of the following factors on the socialization experiences of DHH children: their age at onset of deafness, gender, and degree of hearing loss; their parents' hearing status; their reaction to and acceptance of their child's deafness; communication opportunities with deaf children; group identification and educational placement of deaf learners.
Keywords: Deaf-and-hard-of-hearing children, socialization, self-concept, child-, parental-, cultural and school-related variables.