[PS-2.11] Investigating the Role of Phonological Recoding During Reading in Deaf Children; an Eye-tracking Study

Cooley, F. & Quinto-Pozos, D.

University of Texas at Austin

Researchers debate the role of spoken language phonological awareness in deaf/hard-of-hearing (DHH) children?s early reading. We utilize eye-tracking technology to investigate phonological recoding, the mapping of graphemes to speech sounds, during reading in DHH signing children. Eye-movement patterns during the reading of target words serve as a window into language processing.

We measure DHH and typically hearing (TH) children?s reading times and number of regressions for target words embedded in sentences. Target words appear in three experimental conditions: correct target, homophone foil, and spelling foil. We also test phonological awareness in English and ASL, English reading, and speechreading. Data from 17 children (9 DHH, 8 TH) ages 10;0-12;9 have been analyzed. Data collection is ongoing.

DHH and TH perform similarly on correct (t = -0.33, p = 0.74) and homophone foil (t = 0.78, p = 0.45) conditions as measured by total reading time, suggesting that they may employ similar reading strategies for such words. Neither group displays reading times consistent with reported phonological recoding patterns. Regression patterns for both groups also mimic previous studies, although DHH regress less frequently to target words than the TH controls (t = 3.48, p = 0.0005). Results of other measures will also be provided.